Rabbi’s Reflections – Saturday, January 29, 2022
Shabbat Shalom,

Growing in Love for God – part 1 by David Harwood

I desire to grow in sincere love towards God. I want Him to experience my love. I need to experience His. I want the same thing for everybody. Are we together on this? I hope so.

Here’s a truth that arrests my heart.

You are a creation whose love for your Creator is meaningful to your Creator.

I’m going to stress this. It’s important. When believed it imparts holy balance to our souls. It has immediate relevance to today’s meditation on the Foremost Command.

Concerning God’s commands…

Our Creator has a right to command His creation, but there are so many commandments. How might they be prioritized? Let’s learn from Yeshua. God’s Son pointed out His priority. Look at the record of this revelation:

Yeshua answered, “The first is, ‘Shema Yisrael, Adonai Eloheinu, Adonai echad. Hear, O Israel, the Lord our God, the Lord is One. And you shall love Adonai your God with all your heart, and with all your soul, and with all your mind, and with all your strength. (Mark 12:29-30 TLV)

This call was unique to Israel. Israel’s deliverance from Egypt was the spiritual-social-relational context in which this command was given. Israel is God’s unique people. However, Israel is also the priestly, pattern people. Yeshua is Israel’s saving Messiah, and He is also the Savior of all humanity. This call is important to all.

Through Yeshua, God opens the door to all peoples to enter into relationship with His people and Himself. The call to love “Adonai your God” is no longer unique to Israel. It is a universal command that unveils the ultimate priority to every person.

Since this rule is universally relevant, let’s inquire: Why might this command be so important? Why is it head and shoulders above all others?

Let’s explore one rationale behind the Great Command. Here it is:

Your Creator loves your love.

My perspective is that this is a significant reason for this revelatory, authoritative, guidance. This rationale is true and can be life changing. Please consider it. I hope you embrace the heart behind the command.

The growing fulfillment of the command to love God is the foundation of our fellowship with God. The command is a call to develop a holy, loving, relationship with our Creator.

This call to relationship with the Creator was not new. In the heavenlies “all your heart” types of loving relationships were already established and developed.

Of first importance – first of all – there has always been supremely meaningful, eternally interactive, Love-in-God. The relational love of Father, Son, and Spirit is the most meaningful love there is. Nobody knows God like God knows Himself. Nobody, and nothing, experientially interacts with God like He interacts with Himself. The Triune God has always loved because He was always worth loving in Himself. He, Himself, is eternal love. (1 John 4:8)

Let us consider John 1:1 as the pattern of this reality.

In the beginning was the Word. The Word was with God, and the Word was God. (John 1:1 TLV)

This withness of the Word towards God entailed love. We have been called to love God in the same way our Messiah loves God. The command we’re considering is a means through which God reproduces the relationship of Son-to-Father with us. The command calls us to enter into a Ruach empowered relational love.

We are loved and valued so much that we are called into this holy fellowship. You are commanded to love God with all you are and all you have. Why? Because…

You are a creation whose love for your Creator is important to your Creator.

The Messiah knew that Father delighted in Him and that His love for Father was important to His Father. Yeshua’s love for God caused God’s heart to rejoice.

We are invited to believe the same thing about ourselves. A primary reason we are called to love God is because our love gives God delight. He delights in our love for Him.

Our Creator’s pleasure in us, His love of our fellowship, is a motivation behind His giving Israel, and all humanity, this command. We have been born from above and already love God. It is a significant result of the rebirth. Do you desire to love Him more? When we soberly meditate upon the importance of our love for God, to the God we love, it helps motivate us to love Him more.

Your love for God delights the God you love.

Daily Bread, reading plan by Lars Enarson (https://www.thewatchman.org/)
Sat 29-Jan-2022 27th of Sh’vat, 5782 Parashat Mishpatim
Ex 23:26-24:18 Jer 34:8-22; 33:25-26 1 Ti 6