The Essence of Christian Living
Scripture Reading: 1 Corinthians 13
Key Verses: Matthew 22:34-39
Hearing that Jesus had silenced the Sadducees, the Pharisees got together. One of them, an expert in the law, tested him with this question: “Teacher, which is the greatest commandment in the Law?”
Jesus replied: ” ‘Love the Lord your God with all your heart and with all your soul and with all your mind.’ This is the first and greatest commandment. And the second is like it: ‘Love your neighbor as yourself.’
For many, giving up drinking alcohol is a major decision. It is a very tough decision for some, especially those who don’t abuse it themselves. If you fall into this group, I understand the “wrestling match” your mind is having this week. I am sure that you don’t deny the terrible destruction alcohol has caused our society. I am sure that you are a caring person and you don’t take lightly those around you that are “weak” in this area. Probably you are wrestling with the question of how much responsibility you need to feel for those around you. It is a real and different issue for all of us… in more areas than alcohol.
Today’s scripture may help. Read, again, Jesus’ answer to the question he was asked about what commandments were the greatest! I have always been amazed at Jesus’ answer – I would have thought Jesus would have answered “All commandments of God have equal value!” But He didn’t. According to Jesus, there were two all-encompassing laws of God that should guide anyone wanting to walk with God: 1. Be more interested in God than anything else and 2. Be more interested in others than self.
As you struggle with the issue of social drinking, or any other issues, these two principles are great guidelines. May we all make the necessary lifestyle changes to honor these values!
Father, I want to love what you love and hate what you hate. Please guide me! I need your wisdom and strength to love you and others as I should. I ask this in Jesus’ Name, amen.