Rabbi’s Reflections – Saturday, February 12, 2022 

Shabbat Shalom,

Growing Love 3 by David Harwood

God loves you with all of His heart. He longs for you to believe, receive, and return this love.

Love Adonai your God… (Deuteronomy 6:5a TLV)

You were created to be God’s beloved child, and your Father wants you to be in a loving relationship with Him. That is a foundational reason behind the foremost command. Another important reason you are commanded to love God is that it’s good for you. 

Father loves you, and wants things to be well with you. Therefore He calls you into this loving covenantal relationship and asks you to embrace it with all you are. Through faith in Him you connect with Him. Through your love for Him you receive life from Him. 

This is true, but – although this is supremely beneficial – do not lose sight of this, because it is also true: the Great Command reveals that Your love is significant to God.

Who you are, and what you are, draws love from God. You were created to be, in God’s sight, worthy of His love. You were created to be a creation whose love for God is meaningful to God. When grasped, this is breathtaking and motivating.

Perhaps I should phrase it like this: the command to love God reveals that He loves you, your love for God is valuable to God, and – because He loves you – He wants things to go well for you.

Yeshua pointed out the Great Command. Let’s read the record in Matthew to emphasize it. The Messiah was approached by a well-trained, professional clergyman – a “lawyer” – and that lawyer sought to assess the value of Yeshua as a teacher.

And testing Him, one of them, a lawyer, asked, “Teacher, which is the greatest commandment in the Torah?” 

And He said to him, “ ‘You shall love Adonai your God with all your heart, and with all your soul, and with all your mind.’ This is the first and greatest commandment. (Matthew 22:35–38 TLV) 

That’s what Yeshua said. To His word we say, “amen.” We believe it. We believe whatever He said. He has the words of eternal life. Perhaps, afterwards, if you were alone with your Rabbi you might have asked, “Why?” He might have said something that conveyed this:

Your love for Father is important to Him. You were successfully fashioned by Him to be the type of creation He would love, and whose love for Him is meaningful to Him.

Could God accomplish this? Yes, He could. Yes, He did. 

Why is this command important? Personalize this reason. Please read this reverently:

My love for God is important to the God I love because I was successfully created to be the type of creation who would be loved by my Creator, and whose love for my Creator is meaningful to my Creator.

Consider directing this as a prayer, respectfully, towards God.

My love for You is important to You because I was successfully created by You to be loved by You. I am the type of creation whose love for You is meaningful to You.

Step into this. Personalize it, and meditate on this simple sentence.

The greatest command reveals that my love for God is meaningful to the God I love.

This love is relational. 

It may be expressed in every aspect of worship: from song to service, from self-disclosure to self-sacrifice. The Messiah is your supreme teacher and great example. He revealed that this command is the most important one to God and to us. 

In Acts 3:14a and 22:14 Yeshua was called the Righteous One. 

But you rejected the Holy and Righteous One … (Acts 3:14a TLV) 

And he said, ‘The God of our fathers handpicked you to know His will—to see the Righteous One and to hear an utterance from His mouth. (Acts 22:14 TLV) 

The foundation of His righteousness is found in the fulfillment of the foremost, fundamental command. All His righteous acts flowed from that fountain. Yeshua not only identified, He exemplified the Great Command. He lived this command. 

The Messiah knew the importance of this command to the Creator. He knew that He was loved, His Father told Him so. He steadfastly responded and never departed from His love for your Father. Yeshua’s love delighted His Father throughout His whole life.

Your love delights Him, too.

Daily Bread, reading plan by Lars Enarson (https://www.thewatchman.org/)

Sat 12-Feb-2022 11th of Adar I, 5782 Parashat Tetzaveh

Ex 30:1-10 Ez 43:10-27 Ac 2:38-3:1