Like many, I find myself deeply troubled by the current state of the world. When we turn on our devices, we’re hit with a barrage of negative commentary from the news, social media, and general conversations. My reaction is to lash out against so many atrocities, but I ultimately want to escape from it all. I would gravitate to more isolation if that were possible amid a worldwide pandemic.
So what is the right reaction? The answer to that is still the same and never changed. Humankind changes but not Jesus, our Lord, and savior. He is today what He was yesterday and will be for eternity. His faithfulness delivers a sanctuary of comfort.
Still, I find myself condemning the world and getting sucked into the minutia resulting in self-righteousness and judgment. Convicted by this wrongdoing, I know this is not His way because it is written in John 3:17 “For God did not send His Son into the world to condemn the world, but to save the world through Him.”
Therefore, instead of spending time and energy in worldly battles, what does God expect of me in a society fallen from grace? News flash, a fallen world is nothing new.
Quickly I’m reminded of what I already know. Jesus makes this very clear in Mark 12:28-31 by sharing the most important commandment.
The Greatest Commandment
One of the teachers of the law came and heard them debating. Noticing that Jesus had given them a good answer, he asked him, “Of all the commandments, which is the most important?”
“The most important one,” answered Jesus, “is this: ‘Hear, O Israel: The Lord our God, the Lord is one. Love the Lord your God with all your heart and with all your soul and with all your mind and with all your strength. The second is this: ‘Love your neighbor as yourself.’ There is no commandment greater than these.”
I have to ask myself if I am honoring and fulfilling the greatest commandment of God almighty. Lately, I’m failing at this. If I love the Lord with all of my heart and soul, I would not be capable of condemning the world. Remember, God did not send Jesus to condemn but to save us through Him. Therefore, if we are here to be the Light of Christ and emulate His ways, what should we do instead of sitting by as the judge?
Jesus spells this out very clearly in Matthew 28:16-20.
The Great Commission
Then the eleven disciples went to Galilee, to the mountain where Jesus had told them to go. When they saw him, they worshiped him; but some doubted. Then Jesus came to them and said, “All authority in heaven and on earth has been given to me. Therefore go and make disciples of all nations, baptizing them in the name of the Father and of the Son and of the Holy Spirit, and teaching them to obey everything I have commanded you. And surely I am with you always, to the very end of the age.”
Therefore, my purpose (and for all followers of Jesus) is crystal clear. I must replace the time and energy spent on participating in worldly battles with spiritual victories for the Lord.
How do I get off track with living out God’s greatest commandment? It’s simple. I am human like everyone else. We become the thoughts that we allow into our minds, and the eyes are the gateway to our soul.
Jesus said best in Matthew 6:22-23.
“The eye is the lamp of the body; so then if your eye is clear, your whole body will be full of light. But if your eye is bad, your whole body will be full of darkness. If then the light that is in you is darkness, how great is the darkness!
The good news is that we don’t have to stay in this distracted and negative mindset. We have the power and authority through God’s grace to get back on track or start on this track.
The first step in making disciples is to become a disciple. We cannot disciple others effectively until we become disciples by actively following His greatest commandment. Therefore it makes sense that Jesus would deliver the Greatest Commandment (The What) and then the Great Commission (The How). When we learn how to build an intimate relationship with Jesus, we become the happiest and best version of ourselves vs. miserable and unfulfilled vessels wandering the earth looking for our purpose. God knows what is best for us if we will just surrender our will and follow Him.
Our purpose is Mark 12:28-31, and our mission is Matthew 28:16-20.
Today, I surrender my will to living out the greatest commandment as never before.
I commit to the following:
- Learning more about loving God and others through His living Word.
- Deeper Bible studies and meditating on His Word.
- Increased quiet time listening for Holy Spirit guidance.
- Taking more action as His disciple and teach discipleship to others.
- Replace time watching media with positive encouragement to others.
- Building a deeper relationship with God the Father, God the Son, and God the Holy Spirit.
- Share my testimony and Truth of God with anyone interested.
I encourage you to think about your reaction to world events. Is it bringing you closer to Jesus or pushing Him away? If you need help developing or growing a personal relationship with God, we offer FREE courses, resources and support to do just that.
We simply want to spread the gospel and work together as followers of Jesus.