October 23, 2011: 30th Sunday in Ordinary Time
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.’.” (Matthew 22:34-40.)
We recently mentioned that there were 613 commands that the rabbis followed in Jewish law, based on the writings of Moses (Genesis through Deuteronomy), of which 248 were positive and 365 were negative. They were again testing Jesus to single out one over the rest. When Jesus tells them, “You shall love the Lord, your God with all your heart, with all your soul, and with all your mind,” it’s important to note his emphasis on “all.” Jesus encourages us to give God our “all.”
We are so busy with activities – going to school, sports practice and games, watching TV, spending time on the computer, etc. – it can be hard to find time for God. We may say a quick prayer before bed or hum a song from church, and that’s a good start. How can we schedule more time in our day for God so we’re including all our heart, soul and mind? Jesus then adds the second most important command – to love our neighbor ourselves, finding a balance between loving God and serving others. Let’s give God our all this week.