The Central Importance Of Love

The core ethic of the Christian faith is love. It is so basic that Jesus said that it sums up everything else. Matthew 22:34-40 34  Hearing that Jesus had silenced the Sadducees, the Pharisees got together. 35  One of them, an expert in the law, tested him with this question:  36  ‘Teacher, which is the greatest commandment in the Law?’ 37  Jesus replied: ‘“Love the Lord your God with all your heart and with all your soul and with all your mind.”  38  This is the first and greatest commandment. 39  And the second is like it: “Love your neighbour as yourself.”  40  All the Law and the Prophets hang on these two commandments.’ Jesus was asked to identify the greatest commandment and He didn’t hesitate except that He named two, saying that the whole of the Law and the Prophets hung on those two commands. It is notable that Jesus prioritised love for God over love for people although that should not be used as an excuse for not loving people. Clearly, loving people is high on God’s priority list. In fact, love for God will require love for people since people are made in the image of God and loved by God and God commands love for people. Sometimes those who have the strongest grip on truth are also the least loving. That is a travesty to the extent that we might question the reality of their faith. One cannot truly love God without also loving God’s people. 1 John 4:19-21 19  We love because he first loved us.  20  Whoever claims to love God yet hates a brother or sister is a liar. For whoever does not love their brother and sister, whom they have seen, cannot love God, whom they have not seen.  21  And he has given us this command: anyone who loves God must also love their brother and sister. The Christian ethic is not simply love. It is love, firstly, for God and, secondly, for neighbour.

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© 2017 Peter Cheyne
A Christian’s Guide To Homosexuality
Truth In Love
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The Central

Importance Of Love

The core ethic of the Christian faith is love. It is so basic that Jesus said that it sums up everything else. Matthew 22:34-40 34  Hearing that Jesus had silenced the Sadducees, the Pharisees got together. 35  One of them, an expert in the law, tested him with this question:  36  ‘Teacher, which is the greatest commandment in the Law?’ 37  Jesus replied: ‘“Love the Lord your God with all your heart and with all your soul and with all your mind.”  38   This is the first and greatest commandment. 39  And the second is like it: “Love your neighbour as yourself.”  40  All the Law and the Prophets hang on these two commandments.’ Jesus was asked to identify the greatest commandment and He didn’t hesitate except that He named two, saying that the whole of the Law and the Prophets hung on those two commands. It is notable that Jesus prioritised love for God over love for people although that should not be used as an excuse for not loving people. Clearly, loving people is high on God’s priority list. In fact, love for God will require love for people since people are made in the image of God and loved by God and God commands love for people. Sometimes those who have the strongest grip on truth are also the least loving. That is a travesty to the extent that we might question the reality of their faith. One cannot truly love God without also loving God’s people. 1 John 4:19-21 19  We love because he first loved us.  20   Whoever claims to love God yet hates a brother or sister is a liar. For whoever does not love their brother and sister, whom they have seen, cannot love God, whom they have not seen.  21  And he has given us this command: anyone who loves God must also love their brother and sister. The Christian ethic is not simply love. It is love, firstly, for God and, secondly, for neighbour.

Related pages

© Peter Cheyne 2017.
A Christian’s Guide To Homosexuality
Truth In Love
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