Realizing the presence, promise, and power of the Kingdom of God.
In the Gates

The First Commandment No other gods

Deuteronomy 6.4-9

Hear, O Israel: The LORD our God, the LORD is one. You shall love the LORD your God with all your heart and with all your soul and with all your might. And these words that I command you today shall be on your heart. You shall teach them diligently to your children, and shall talk of them when you sit in your house, and when you walk by the way, and when you lie down, and when you rise. You shall bind them as a sign on your hand, and they shall be as frontlets between your eyes. You shall write them on the doorposts of your house and on your gates.”

 

Deuteronomy 6.4-9

Hear, O Israel: The LORD our God, the LORD is one. You shall love the LORD your God with all your heart and with all your soul and with all your might. And these words that I command you today shall be on your heart. You shall teach them diligently to your children, and shall talk of them when you sit in your house, and when you walk by the way, and when you lie down, and when you rise. You shall bind them as a sign on your hand, and they shall be as frontlets between your eyes. You shall write them on the doorposts of your house and on your gates.”

Ephesians 5.15-17; Colossians 4.6

Pure love for God embraces and involves our entire being. Our goal must be to love God with all our soul and strength. This means that our minds, hearts, and consciences must be daily consecrated and devoted to loving God, and all our strength of body – whether exerted in words or deeds – must reflect and express the love we have for Him.

The Lord mentions here heart, soul, mind, and might. Both the immaterial and material facets of our lives are to be devoted to loving God. The heart is the vital wellspring of all existence, for from it flow all the other issues of life (Prov. 4.23). All our affections are to be devoted to loving God. The mind refers to the various cognitive functions we perform each day – thinking, imagining, recalling, synthesizing, analyzing, and all the rest. It too must be devoted to the service of the living God through love (2 Cor. 10.3-5). The soul probably is intended here to encompass heart and mind in the larger spiritual entity, the soul, and so includes what the New Testament will refer to as the conscience (Acts 24.16). We must discipline our affections, thinking, and priorities (will) to bend toward loving God as of the first importance in all we do.

This series of In the Gates we present a detailed explanation of the Law of God, beginning with the Ten Commandments, and working through the statutes and rules that accompany each commandment. For a practical guide to the role of God’s Law in the practice of ethics, get The Ground for Christian Ethics by going to www.MyParuchia.com and click on our Book Store.

T.M. Moore

T. M. Moore is principal of The Fellowship of Ailbe, a spiritual fellowship in the Celtic Christian tradition. He and his wife, Susie, make their home in Essex Junction, VT.
Books by T. M. Moore

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