Jesus Teaches on the Primary Commands
Open Your Bible
BY Vina Mogg
He only had a few more days to walk this Earth. He knew the end was approaching.
In His last days, He passionately attempted to make the words of His Father’s message clear: He is the Son of God, our Savior. Days earlier, He physically cleared the temple.
On this day, He spoke in parables (Matthew 22:1). Through stories, He tries to make His point to the mixed audience of locals and religious leaders, making clear the demands of God’s word.
He could ask us the same. Maybe you have heard stories of Abraham, King David, a wedding feast, and a coin due to Caesar during the early days of Sunday School. Or maybe you’re reading for the first time as an adult today.
Jesus uses wordplay to point out that He fulfills these stories. On the days leading up to His death on the cross, the words He chose to explain who He is left all who heard them marveling, astonished, awestruck.
He catches them in their own snare when they ask Him: what are the most important laws to obey? (v.36).
He answers the upright religious leaders with the words of the shema, a prayer recited from their earliest days of the Jewish faith: “Love the Lord your God with all your heart, with all your soul, and with all your mind” (v.37).
Picture Jesus on stage today, lips close to the microphone that He clutches in His hand, His voice capturing the audience of believers and skeptics with authority and truth. He leans in for one last word. A well-known word. He drops the mic. He turns and walks away.
The words He chose to speak held familiarity and authority.
Are these words we hear authoritative or just words to recite: “Love the Lord your God with all your heart, with all your soul, and with all your mind” (v.37).
The Hebrew word shema means to hear. Do we listen to what Jesus is saying?