When the Pharisees heard that Jesus had silenced the Sadducees,
they gathered together, and one of them,
a scholar of the law tested him by asking,
“Teacher, which commandment in the law is the greatest?”
He said to him,
“You shall love the Lord, your God,
with all your heart,
with all your soul,
and with all your mind.
This is the greatest and the first commandment.
The second is like it:
You shall love your neighbor as yourself.
The whole law and the prophets depend on these two commandments.”
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The Ten Commandments that God gives us are built off of two basic laws that Jesus reminds us of in this Sunday’s Gospel reading. We must always love God above all things, making him the center of our lives and our first priority. We have to love our neighbor as ourselves, giving them the care and kindness that we’d want to receive. This reading reminds me of a quote by St. Augustine which reads, “Love God and do as you will.” Don’t be mistaken and think this means that we can do whatever we want as long as we love. When we’re so deeply in love with God, we will what God wills. We don’t seek to do what we want for our lives, but what God wants. I think this can also be applied to our neighbors. When we truly love our brothers and sisters in Christ, we put their needs above ours. As we listen to Jesus’ commands in this Sunday’s Gospel, let’s truly take them to heart by loving the Lord more intentionally and living as an instrument of his love.
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