Mark 12:29-31 - Love for God and Mankind; Spirit and Summary of The Ten Commandments.

Mark 12:29-31 (NKJV) Jesus answered him, 
"The first of all the commandments is: 'Hear, O 
Israel, the Lord our God, the Lord is one.  And you 
shall love the Lord your God with all your heart, 
with all your soul, with all your mind, and with 
all your strength.' This is the first 
commandment.  And the second, like it, is this: 'You 
shall love your neighbor as yourself.' There is no 
other commandment greater than these."  


The Scripture passage here quoted (Deut. 
6:4) has been the sacred watchword of Israel down 
through their long history. It reflects the 
distinctive belief of the Jews in the one true God, in 
contrast with the many gods of the nations. These 
words were uttered to open the morning and evening 
prayer services in the Temple, and are a regular 
part of Jewish synagogue services to this day.  
[SDA Bible Commentary] 

The first quotation came to be known as the 
Shema, named after the first word of Deut. 6:4 in 
Hebrew, which means "hear." The Shema became the 
Jewish confession of faith, which was recited by 
pious Jews every morning and evening. To this day 
it begins every synagogue service To the 
Shema Jesus joined the commandment from Lev 19:18 
to show that love for neighbor is a natural and 
logical outgrowth of love for God. [NIV SB] 

"Thou shalt love the Lord thy God with all 
thy heart, and with all thy soul, and with all 
thy mind, and with all thy strength. This is the 
first commandment. And the second is like, namely 
this: Thou shalt love thy neighbor as thyself. 
There is none other commandment greater than 
these." These two great principles embrace the first 
four commandments, showing the duty of man to 
God, and the last six, showing the duty of man to 
his fellowman. 1BC1104 

The Ten Commandments can be divided into two 
categories: those dealing with love for God (the first 
four Commandments) and those dealing with 
responsibilities toward other people (the last six 
Commandments). The same may be said for all the Law and the 
Prophets. [Nelson SB re Mat. 22:29-31] 


   How do you get into a swimming pool? Some 
people dip in their toes to test the water's 
temperature. Others walk to the shallow end and slowly 
ease themselves into the water. Then there are 
those who leap off the side of the pool and do a 
cannonball into the deep end. 
   In the early 1980s, cannonballs were more 
than a way to jump into the water. They were a 
source of competition at the World Belly-Flop and 
Cannonball Diving Championships. Contestants dressed in 
funny costumes and bright bathing suits, hoping to 
make a big splash. Each competitor - some weighed 
over 250 pounds - performed three jumps from a 
one-meter diving board where they earned points based 
on six criteria: height of splash, water 
displaced from pool, degree of difficulty, artistry, 
personality, and color of swimsuit. The winner received 
an amazing array of prizes, including a green 
bathroom, a trophy, a bowling bag, a set of wrenches, 
and a bag of cash. Not to mention bragging 
rights as the world's best cannonballer. 
   A silly contest might appear to have 
little to do with our faith in Christ. But when it 
comes to following Jesus, he wants us to dive in! 
Dipping your toe into Christianity can be an okay 
way to start, but until you take the plunge and 
give your whole life to Christ, your faith can 
leave you feeling cold. 
   During Jesus' time on earth, a teacher of 
the law asked him which of the commandments was 
the most important. Jesus answered, "Love the 
Lord your God with all your heart and with all 
your soul and with all your mind and with all 
your strength (Mark 12:30). Notice that Jesus 
said all your heart, all your soul, all your 
mind, and all your strength. We can't effectively 
live for Christ when we just dip in our toes. 
Doing a cannonball into a life with Jesus Christ 
can seem scary. You might risk people thinking 
you're a little weird. But in reality, diving into 
your relationship with God isn't risky at all. 
When you take the plunge and wholeheartedly 
commit to Christ, you're guaranteed to never 
belly-flop but always make a big splash. 
   "Love the Lord your God with all your 
heart and with all your soul and with all your 
mind and with all your strength" Mark 12:30. 
[Case For Christ For Kids by Les Strobel] 


Your Emotions Serve a Purpose
   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 
your life. 
   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 
your life. 
   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: 

What does it mean to "Love your neighbor as 
   Jesus speaks of loving one's neighbor as 
the second most important of the Old Testament 
commandments (Mark 12:31). Love summarizes the entire Old 
Testament law (Matthew 7:12; 22:40). Jesus repeatedly 
criticized the Pharisees for their failure to show 
love. Love is the mark of a true follower of Jesus 
and of an authentic experience of God (John 
13:34-35; 1 John 4:7-21).  
   When we turn to Paul's writings, we see 
that love is the most important virtue and more 
important than any of the spiritual gifts. Love "binds 
us all together in perfect harmony" (Colossians 
3:14). Without love, ministry has limited value (1 
Corinthians 13:1-3). Paul summed up Christian ethics as 
"faith expressing itself in love" (Galatians 5:6). 
Love is the central ethical expression of 
Christian faith, the primary fruit of the Spirit 
(Galatians 5:22), and one of the most important 
motivations for ministry. The most important thing for 
believers to value and seek is to become a faithfully 
loving person. [One Year NLT SB] 


   On Christmas morning, little Amy was 
delighted to find a beautiful golden-haired doll among 
the presents she unwrapped. "She's so pretty!" 
Amy squealed in excitement as she hugged her new 
doll. Then rushing to hug her grandmother, the 
giver of the doll, she cried, "Thank you, thank 
you, thank you!" 
   Amy played with her new doll most of the 
day, but toward evening she put it down and 
sought out one of her old dolls. Amy cradled the 
tattered and dilapidated old doll in her arms. Its 
hair had nearly worn away, its nose was broken, 
one eye was askew, and an arm was missing. 
   "Well, well," Grandma noted, "it seems as 
though you like that old dolly better. 
   I like the beautiful doll you gave me, 
Grandma, little Amy explained, "but I love this old 
doll more, because if I didn't love her, no one 
else would." 
   We all know the saying, "Beauty is in the 
eye of the beholder." A similar saying might be, 
"Love is the choice of the beholder." When we see 
faults in others, we can choose to look beyond 
them. We can choose to love them regardless of 
their negative attributes, faults, or quirks. 
[God's Little Devotional Bible] 


   Mine deep enough in every heart and 
you'll find it: a longing for meaning, a quest for 
purpose. As surely as a child breathes, he will 
someday wonder, "What is the purpose of my life?" 
   Some search for meaning in a career. "My 
purpose is to be a dentist." Fine vocation but 
hardly a justification for existence. They opt to 
be a human "doing" rather than a human "being." 
Who they are is what they do; consequently they 
do a lot. They work many hours because if they 
don't work, they don't have an identity. 
   For others, who they are is what they 
have. They find meaning in a new car or a new 
house or new clothes. These people are great for 
the economy and rough on the budget because they 
are always seeking meaning in something they own 
... Some try sports, entertainment, cults, sex, 
you name it. 
   All mirages in the desert of purpose...
   Shouldn't we face the truth? If we don't 
acknowledge God, we are flotsam in the universe. [Grace 
For The Moment SB By Max Lucado re Mark 12:30] 


Love is not the work of the Holy Spirit, it 
is the Holy Spirit - working in us. God is 
love, He doesn't merely have it or give it; He 
gives Himself - to all men, to all sorts and 
conditions. Joseph Fletcher  


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 


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