Rabbi’s Reflections – Saturday, November 19, 2022
Day 22: Evening
by David Harwood
People Who Love God More Than Anything Else
Through Yeshua’s words the Foremost Command has become the Spotlighted Command. It is of the highest priority. In these series of meditations, we’re trying to highlight this command to ourselves. Yeshua said:
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 12:30 TLV)
If you’re a fan of a specific sport spending time with another fan, you will probably end up talking about the sport. If you are someone who spends a lot of time clipping coupons with another person of like frugality, guess what? You’ll probably talk about sales and bargains. Movies, music, cars, high culture, golf, guns? I know you understand. Oh! Did I forget about politics? I did! How did I forget that?
Now, we are a fellowship of people who love God more than anyone, or anything else. Yeshua said,
“He who loves father or mother more than Me isn’t worthy of Me, and he who loves son or daughter more than Me isn’t worthy of Me. 38And whoever does not take up his cross and follow after Me isn’t worthy of Me. 39He who finds his life will lose it, and he who loses his life for My sake will find it. (Matthew 10:37-39 TLV)
Such challenging words express a norm that is rarely consistently achieved. We really do need enabling favor. No wonder we might ask:
Father, please reveal something about Your Son to us which would increase our devotion to Him.
People who love the Messiah will talk with one another about what the Lord is revealing and doing in their lives. This is normative. This is good. This is edifying. This is fellowship.
What we have seen and heard we proclaim also to you, so you may have fellowship with us. Indeed, our fellowship is with the Father and His Son, Yeshua the Messiah. (1 John 1:3 TLV)
Every disciple has a measure of responsibility for the spiritual health of the Body. The wellbeing of the Messianic Communities can be measured, in part, by the quality of the sincere love they have for God.
Pertaining to unique circumstances, seven times it is written, “He who has an ear, let him hear what the Ruach is saying to Messiah’s communities.” (Revelation 2:7a, 11a, 17a, 29a; 3:6a, 13a, 22a TLV) The Foremost Command is nottailor made to unique situations. It is for all people, in all places, at all times. For those who are willing, there is a winsome way to strengthen one another’s love.
First, it requires intentionality. A reason we communicate is to edify each other. Led by the Ruach, we can share that which will give grace to those with whom we speak. Here is Paul’s call to purposeful speech:
Let no harmful word come out of your mouth, but only what is beneficial for building others up according to the need, so that it gives grace to those who hear it. (Ephesians 4:29 TLV)
Might you benefit from receiving grace (enabling favor) in your pursuit of fulfilling the Great Command? Of course you would and God desires to impart light to us through His Ruach ha-Kodesh. Let’s return to Paul’s prayer along these lines.
(I pray) that the God of our Lord Yeshua the Messiah, our glorious Father, may give you spiritual wisdom and revelation in knowing Him. 18I pray that the eyes of your heart may be enlightened… (Ephesians 1:17-18a TLV)
How might we experience this? Let’s consider two ways. I believe that one is to be more highly prized than the other. The greater means is to hear directly from God through His Ruach receiving illumination by His Word, or intuitively through the Voice of the Ruach. Secondarily we hear from God through one another. I encourage you to take advantage of venues established for this to transpire. If there are none, why not make one?
We are called to have fellowship with one another and what we receive as Light is often intended to help others in our relational spheres. We get to have the opportunity to help others grow and maintain their love for the Creator. This is important to the One who made us. Why? As we’ve emphasized:
We are creations whose love for our Creator is meaningful to the Creator.
Ask, receive, and share.
Daily Bread, reading plan by Lars Enarsson (https://www.thewatchman.org/)
Sat 19-Nov-2022 25th of Cheshvan, 5783 Parashat Chayei Sara
Ge 25:12-18 1 Ki 1:1-31 Gal 4:21-31