Jesus commands us to love God and our neighbor.
1. “Teacher, which is the greatest commandment in the Law?” Jesus replied: “Love the Lord your God with all your heart and with all your soul and with all your mind. This is the first and greatest commandment. And the second is like it; Love your neighbor as yourself. All the Law and the Prophets hang on these two commandments.” Matthew 22:36-40
Jesus was quoting the Old Testament.
2. Love the Lord your God with all your heart and with all your soul and with all your strength. Deuteronomy 6:5
3. Do not seek revenge or bear a grudge against one of your people, but love your neighbor as yourself. I am the Lord. Leviticus 19:18
Now we are to love each other as Jesus has loved us, not just as we love ourselves.
4. A new command I (Jesus) give you: Love one another. As I have loved you, so you must love one another. By this all men will know that you are my disciples, if you love one another. John 13:34-35
5. My command is this: Love each other as I have loved you. Greater love has no one than this, that he lay down his life for his friends. John 15:12-13
6. This is how we know what love is: Jesus Christ laid down his life for us. And we ought to lay down our lives for our brothers. If anyone has material possessions and sees his brother in need but has no pity on him, how can the love of God be in him? Dear children, let us not love with words or tongue but with actions and in truth. I John 3:16-18
7. Let no debt remain outstanding, except the continuing debt to love one another, for he who loves his fellowman has fulfilled the law. The commandments, “Do not commit adultery,” “Do not murder,” “Do not steal,” “Do not covet,” and whatever other commandment there may be, are summed up in this one rule: “Love your neighbor as yourself.” Love does no harm to its neighbor. Therefore love is the fulfillment of the law. Romans 13:8-10
How do we love God? By obeying His commands.
8. This is how we know that we love the children of God: by loving God and carrying out his commands. This is love for God: to obey his commands. And his commands are not burdensome. I John 5:2-3
9. You have heard that it was said, “Love your neighbor and hate your enemy.” But I (Jesus) tell you: Love your enemies (bless those who curse you, do good to those who hate you) and pray for those who persecute you, that you may be sons of your Father in heaven. He causes his sun to rise on the evil and the good, and sends rain on the righteous and the unrighteous. If you love those who love you, what reward will you get? Are not even the tax collectors doing that? Matthew 5:43-46
10. For in Christ Jesus neither circumcision nor uncircumcision has any value. The only thing that counts is faith expressing itself through love (working through love). Galatians 5:6
11. But the fruit of the Spirit is love, joy, peace, patience, kindness, goodness, faithfulness, gentleness and self-control. Against such things there is no law (that can bring a charge). Galatians 5:22-23
12. Hatred stirs up dissension, but love covers over all wrongs. Proverbs 10-12
13. For God did not give us a spirit of timidity, but a spirit of power, of love and of self-discipline (a sound mind). II Timothy 1:7
14. Better a meal of vegetables where there is love than a fattened calf with hatred. Proverbs 15-17
15. And he died for all, that those who live should no longer live for themselves but for him who died for them and was raised again. II Corinthians 5:15
Prayer: Father, You command us to love You and everyone else, even as Jesus has loved me. I choose to do that and be obedient, but I cannot do that on my own, so I ask You to help me. Your command even includes loving my enemies. I know that the people that seem to be my enemies are being influenced by satan and his demons. Help me remember that and love them with Your help. Thank You. In Jesus' name. Amen