by James Andrade
August 23, 2013
When the Pharisees heard that Jesus had silenced the Sadducees, they gathered together, and one of them, a scholar of the law, tested him by asking, “Teacher, which commandment in the law is the greatest?” He said to him, “You shall love the Lord, your God, with all your heart, with all your soul, and with all your mind. This is the greatest and the first commandment. The second is like it: You shall love your neighbor as yourself. The whole law and the prophets depend on these two commandments.”
I wonder if the Pharisees were thinking two thoughts. One, if we can trip up Jesus then He will not receive so much glory and honor. Second, PLUS we’ll be better than the Sadducees. Human nature prods us to lift ourselves up, as if we deserve recognition. We want to be noticed, loved, desired. The Pharisees wanted to be number 1 – know anyone like that?
Jesus, in one fell swoop, put both desires into the proper perspective. Love God! Love your neighbor! It isn’t inherently wrong to want recognition for what we do (mostly the good kind). But it must be held in the perspective of God first, and others before us. We all need to practice lifting each other up, because the world works even harder to tear us down. Love God first! Love others like we love ourselves! Everything depends on these. Be like Ruth!
“See now,” she (Naomi) said, “your sister-in-law has gone back to her people and her god. Go back after your sister-in-law!” But Ruth said, “Do not press me to go back and abandon you! Wherever you go I will go,
wherever you lodge I will lodge. Your people shall be my people and your God, my God.
Below is submitted by Alika Cockett
“Ask and it will be given to you; seek and you will find; knock and the door will be opened to you.” (Matthew 7:7, NIV)
What do you need from God today? A lot of times, it’s easy to think that we’re not supposed to ask for too much, but scripture encourages us to go to God with all of our needs. He longs to give you the desires of your heart and pour out His favor and blessing on you. In fact, Jesus said, “You have not because you ask not.”
Anytime you step out and ask for God’s favor, blessing or increase, you are exercising your faith. When you do pray, make sure there isn’t anything in your heart that would block that faith. Begin your prayers by surrendering every thought and attitude to the Lord. Ask Him to purify your motives and show you if there is any unforgiveness in your life. When you surrender everything to the Lord, it opens the door for Him to move on your behalf. Today, surrender all to Him and ask for whatever you need. Let Him pour out His favor and blessing on every area of your life.
A PRAYER FOR TODAY
Father, I humbly come to You and surrender every area of my heart and life. I ask that You pour out Your favor and blessing on me so that I can be a greater blessing to others in Jesus’ name. Amen.