Matthew 22:36, 37 - Loving God With All Your Heart, Soul And Mind.
Matthew 22:36, 37 (NIV) "Teacher, which is
the greatest commandment in the Law?" 37 Jesus
replied: "'Love the Lord your God with all your heart
and with all your soul and with all your mind.'
Like many other people, I enjoy social
media, television, reading, and talking on the
phone. Until recently, the first thing I did every
morning was look at social media and see what was
going on with my friends. I enjoyed sending
birthday and anniversary greetings. Afterward, I
would say my prayers. But I began to I realize, I
was spending more time posting on Facebook than
talking to Jesus or reading His Word.
The things I enjoy are not sinful. Work,
family, relationships, and hobbies are good things.
But sin comes creeping in when we make these
things a priority over Jesus. The first commandment
says for us to have no other gods before Him. I
had literally put my entertainment before Jesus.
Matthew 6:33 (ESV) instructs us, But seek first
the kingdom of God and his righteousness, and
all these things will be added to you.
When I evaluated my time, I realized that
all of my time was really His time. I rearranged
my priorities and put Him first.
Since I have reorganized my priorities, I
begin each day by praying and connecting with
Jesus. I read my Bible and devotions daily and
listen to Christian music while Im working or
driving. Throughout the day, I talk to Jesus. Since
Jesus has become first in my life, everything else
is falling into place. His peace is filling my
heart. I still enjoy Facebook and chatting with
friends, but I dont let them rule my life and
time. by Katie Minter Jones
Faith Step: Evaluate how much time you
spend doing other things and if Jesus is your
priority. [Mornings With Jesus 2020 Devotional by
Guideposts and Zondervan]
The Bee Gees sang, How can you mend a
broken heart? Elvis lived down at the end of
Lonely Street at Heartbreak Hotel. Bruce
Springsteen said that everybodys got a hungry
heart. Tom Petty was tired of people dragging his
heart around. And Selena Gomez sang that the heart
wants what it wants.
But heres the problem with our hearts.
They can lead us in the wrong direction. In fact,
the Bible tells us in Jeremiah 17:9, The
heart is deceitful above all things, and
desperately wicked; Who can know it? (NKJV). The
Message puts the same verse this way: The heart
is hopelessly dark and deceitful, a puzzle that
no one can figure out.
Jesus, showing the potential darkness of
our own hearts, said, For out of the heart
proceed evil thoughts, murders, adulteries,
fornications, thefts, false witness, blasphemies
(Matthew 15:19 NKJV).
Our hearts are dark. Our hearts are evil.
And our hearts can mislead us. Thats why we
need to let our minds step in and help us.
Jesus said, You shall love the Lord
your God with all your heart, with all your soul,
and with all your mind (Matthew 22:37 NKJV).
The Hebrew word for soul would be closer to our
use of the word heart. It speaks of something
deep inside a person.
Our love for God needs to be emotive and
intelligent. One doesnt cancel out the other. We need
to love the Lord with all of our hearts. We
need to love God with our emotions and our
intellect. And we need to love God with our strength.
We need to love Him with our time and
resources, with everything that we have.
As Christians, the objective is not to
focus on our hearts. It is to focus our hearts on
God. [By Greg Laurie from Harvest Ministries;
There are a lot of people who say they
love God, but sometimes we wonder about that
because their actions seem to contradict it.
Matthews Gospel tells us about an
occasion when the religious leaders came to Jesus
with a trap. They were trying to get Him to
identify the greatest of the commandments. But
instead of answering their question, He tells them
how to love God and what it actually means.
Jesus said, You must love the Lord
your God with all your heart, all your soul, and
all your mind. This is the first and greatest
commandment. A second is equally important: Love your
neighbor as yourself. The entire law and all the
demands of the prophets are based on these two
commandments (Matthew 22:37"40 NLT). Jesus got to the
heart of the matter about loving God.
To loosely paraphrase, Jesus was saying,
Guys, instead of trying to focus on all of these
rules, try this. Just love God. If you love God as
you ought to love Him, then everything will fall
into its proper place.
That is why Augustine, one of the early
church fathers, said, Love God, and do as you
please. That almost sounds insane, but it isnt.
If you really love God in the way the Bible
tells you to love Him, then youll want to do
what pleases Him.
When you love God with all your heart,
all your soul, and all your mind, it means
that you love Him with every part of your being.
To the ancient Hebrews, the word heart did not
refer as much to the emotions as it did to the
core of ones being. For the Christian, the
objective is not to focus on your heart; it is to
focus your heart on God. [By Greg Laurie from
Harvest Ministries; https://www.harvestdaily.com]
Jesus says in Mark 12:29-30, The most
important commandment is this You must love the
Lord your God with all your heart, all your soul,
all your mind, and all your strength (NLT).
Do you hear the emotion in the words of
Jesus? Hes saying he doesnt want you to just
kind of love him. He wants you to love him
passionately - with all your heart, all your soul, all
your mind, and all your strength. God wants more
than your head knowledge. He wants an emotional
relationship with you.
There are some things you need to
understand about emotions.
First, God has emotions. God is an
emotional God. He feels joy, grief, pain, and hatred
toward sin. He gets frustrated with people. The
only reason you have emotions is because youre
made in Gods image. If God wasnt an
emotional God, you wouldnt have any emotions.
Second, your ability to feel is a gift
from God. Emotions are what make you human. It is
your emotional ability that allows you to love
and create and be faithful and loyal and kind
and generous and experience all of the emotions
that are attached to the good things in life.
Your emotions may not always seem like a gift,
but even the negative ones have a purpose in
Third, there are two extremes to avoid.
Emotionalism is the extreme of saying the only thing that
matters in life is how you feel - not what you think
or whats right or wrong. Everything in life
is based on your emotions. Emotions control
On the other hand, stoicism says feelings
arent important at all, and the only things that
matter are your intellect and your will.
There are entire Christian denominations
built on these differing approaches to emotions.
Some Christians have decided that it doesnt
really matter how you feel. They downplay
Thats not right. God gave you your
emotions for a reason, and he wants you to worship
him emotionally - with all your heart and all
your mind. [Daily Devotional by Rick Warren:
Staying Close to the Master
Both dogs and cats have taught me lessons
A dog loves unconditionally, accepting
discipline and holding no resentment. A dog follows its
master and likes to be right at his or her feet.
Our dog Shabah was always where we were. When we
went upstairs to bed, he planted himself right in
our doorway. In the morning, he sat on my feet
or Rick's while we did our devotions together.
He was easily trained because he wanted to
please us. If he needed something, he let us know
through his manner and his "puppy dog look": "I have
to go out." "Please please please throw
the tennis ball." "Give me a scratch." We always
responded. Shabah died, but now Sarge is much the
I had numerous cats when I was a child,
and cats are lovely but independent. They don't
need to be with the "master" at all times. In
fact, cats seem to think they are the masters of
their own realms. "Here, kitty, kitty," doesn't
always bring them running. Sometimes cats will look
at you with that "what do you want?"
expression, and sometimes they'll find a nice quiet
place and just plain ignore you. On the plus side,
petting them is said to reduce stress. Who can
resist that nimbly purring sound they make when
they're being stroked? But affection has to be on
their own terms. They'll come when they're called
as long as you're offering food or milk. If
there isn't something in it for them, they'll come
when they please.
Don't get me wrong; I love both dogs and
cats. But in matters of faith, I don't want to be
like a cat, thinking I can call the shots and do
my own thing. I want to be like a dog. I want
to be at my Master's feet. I want to serve Him
the way the apostle Peter describes: "willingly,
not grudgingly - not for what [I] will get out
of it, but because [I am] eager to serve God."
When I hear God's quiet voice, I want to come
running, grinning from ear to ear, ready to do
whatever He asks.
Lord God, I want to be wholehearted in my
devotion to You, loving You fully and unconditionally
because You are my God and You care for me. Teach me
to be loyal, to remain close to You, and to be
eager to do Your will. May I serve You with my
whole heart, not out of duty but out of pure love
for who You are. [Earth Psalms by Francine
Rivers re 1 Pet. 5:2]
I prayed fervently and persistently for
God to fulfill a deep desire. Over time the
pleas grew deeper and more desperate, and the
desire grew larger in my own mind. In fact, it grew
so large that I eventually realized it had
become almost as important to me as God was. I had
been desperately praying for God to fulfill my
love for something that would rival Him in my
We do that often, though usually so
subtly that we hardly notice. We treat God as our
Cyrano de Bergerac, who was put in the painful
position of helping another man win the heart of
someone Cyrano himself loved deeply. We ask God for
those objects of our affection, forgetting that He
desires to be an even greater object of our
affection. We provoke His jealousy in our prayers for
His blessings. God then has to choose between
either watching our heart delight in His gift
rather than the Giver or disappointing us by not
giving us our heart's delight at all. In His mercy,
He often gives anyway, but our joy in our
treasures often overshadows our joy in Him.
There's a way around this dilemma, of
course. It's to always treasure God over and above
the things we ask of Him. But that's easier said
than done, considering our common misperceptions
of His goodness and glory. Hannah was able to
maintain her priorities by offering the gift, her
child Samuel, back to God.And in a sense, that's
what we have to do with every request we plead.
The God who loves us passionately offers us
extravagant blessings, as long as we love Him more
extravagantly than them all.
Lord, please forgive me for exalting my
requests above You. I want You to fulfill my desires,
but not more than I want to fulfill Your
desires. My greatest affections belong to You -
always. [The One Year Experiencing Gods Presence
Devotional by Chris Tiegreen re 1 Samuel 1:11]
LINKS FOR FURTHER STUDY ON THIS PASSAGE
Matthew 22:36-40 - The Greatest Commandment.
Matthew 22:36-40 - Loving God With All Your
Heart, Soul And Mind.
If anyone has a paraphrase, commentary or
testimony on this passage of Scripture, either
personal or otherwise, I would be interested in
hearing from you. Thanks in advance and let's keep
uplifting Jesus that all might be drawn to Him. Fred
LINKS WORTH CHECKING OUT
Most Important Decision in Life:
A Man without Equal by Bill Bright:
Seeking God Made Real:
Prayer Made Real:
Importance of Choice:
http://creationhealth.com/CREATION-Health/Choice [click on video]
Medical Seminar on Healthful Living by David
DeRose, MD, MPH:
LINKS FOR BIBLE STUDIES
Lifting Up Jesus Bible Studies:
Amazing Facts Bible Studies:
Hope Awakens Bible Study Guides:
Glow Tract Video Bible Studies:
LINKS FOR BIBLE PROPHECY SEMINARS
Unlocking Bible Prophecies by Cami Oetman of
Adventist World Radio (currently live):
Hope Awakens by John Bradshaw of IIW:
The Last Day of Prophecy by Pastor Doug
Prophecies Decoded by Pastor Ron Clouzet: