As a follower of Jesus, you are on a stage. People are watching to see what you do—and whether they want to be part of that. You are on a stage, and people see everything you do.
Read Mark 12: 28-34. What stands out to you?
We often read the first part of this account and memorize Jesus’ words as to the greatest two commands. What we often miss is that not everyone in the crowd was skeptical.
Review the passage again. How does the man who asked the question respond to Jesus’ answer?
And how does Jesus respond to that?
Isn’t that what we all want? We just want a little taste of the kingdom of Heaven. We just want to know what is expected of us. This man answered correctly, not because of “knowledge”, but because he honestly sought Jesus’ response and he was willing to accept the answer.
In that same passage, how did the people respond to this interchange?
When the kingdom of God is near, suddenly the people have no more words. They saw a man “get it right”, saw the Savior’s approval, and instead of clamoring on, they stayed their questions.
“You have spoken the truth, for there is one God, and there is no other but He. And to love Him with all the heart, with all the understanding, with all the soul, and with all the strength, and to love one’s neighbor as oneself, is more than all the whole burnt offerings and sacrifices.” –Mark 12:32b-33
Love one another
Read the following passages and write out what you learn about loving one another.
- John 13:34-35
- John 15:12-17
- Romans 12:10-13
- 1 Thessalonians 3:12-13
- Hebrews 10:24-25
- 1 Peter 1:22-25
- 1 Peter 3:8-9
- 1 Peter 4:8-10
- 1 John 3:11-12
- 1 John 3:23
- 1 John 4:7-12
- 2 John 1:5-6
We are the body of Christ. We are His people and His light to the watching world. How we treat each other is a foreshadowing to the unbelieving world as to how they will be treated if they, too, become a follower of Christ. It is not just good family dynamics to love one another—it is a proclamation to the world that grace, love, and accountability are the norm here.
What is God asking you to do right now?
Read Matthew 5:13-48. What stands out to you?
Reviewing that passage, what specific commands does Jesus give regarding our behavior toward others?
I submit that each and every one of these is rooted in love. If we have a heart of love for the people around us, we can more easily turn the other cheek, we can more easily share the grace bestowed on us with the one in front of us.
A heart of love changes everything.
Go back and now read Matthew 5:1-12. What stands out to you?
What rewards are listed in this passage?
A heart of love is poor in spirit, is meek, is hungry for righteousness, and all of the other things listed there. If you put on a heart of love, if you follow through with the commands of this chapter, you will experience the love of God in a measure you have not known before.
What is He asking you to do right now?