The Greatest Command – Ps Kerrin Wallis [24/03/2019 AM]
Mark 12:28-34 (NLT)
28 One of the teachers of the law came and heard them debating. Noticing that Jesus had given them a good answer, he asked him, “Of all the commandments, which is the most important?”
29 “The most important one,” answered Jesus, “is this: ‘Hear, O Israel: The Lord our God, the Lord is one. 30 Love the Lord your God with all your heart and with all your soul and with all your mind and with all your strength.’ 31 The second is this: ‘Love your neighbour as yourself.’ There is no commandment greater than these.”
32 “Well said, teacher,” the man replied. “You are right in saying that God is one and there is no other but him. 33 To love him with all your heart, with all your understanding and with all your strength, and to love your neighbour as yourself is more important than all burnt offerings and sacrifices.”
34 When Jesus saw that he had answered wisely, he said to him, “You are not far from the kingdom of God.” And from then on no one dared ask him any more questions.
- Love the Lord your God
- This is the most important command.
- What does that command look like?
This is what it means.
Only One God. He is the only one.
- Not like ‘Spotify’ a music program where you can skip this song or leave that music.
- We don’t have the right to pick and choose.
- God will not take second place.
- There is no other competition.
- Do not conform to the pattern of this world.
Romans 12:1-2 (NLT)
12 And so, dear brothers and sisters, I plead with you to give your bodies to God because of all he has done for you. Let them be a living and holy sacrifice—the kind he will find acceptable. This is truly the way to worship him. 2 Don’t copy the behaviour and customs of this world, but let God transform you into a new person by changing the way you think. Then you will learn to know God’s will for you, which is good and pleasing and perfect.
- Repentance is not just a one off deal. It should keep going forever. People stop having a repentant heart.
- We need to make God number one in our world.
- To be surrendered to Him you have to live in repentance.
Where does God start?
- Our Heart
- Our Soul
- Our Mind
- Our Strength.
- Our heart is the most important place to love God.
- Religion is focussed on externals.
- Christianity puts the heart first.
- Change your heart motivation.
- Have you ever noticed that once you start talking about food you have difficulty stopping?
- When Kerrin was surfing with his friends early in the morning and they were out on the ocean, they started thinking about food, the bakery and egg and bacon rolls and soon could think of nothing else.
- Our heart loves God and wants to serve Him.
- Our heart directs our soul and we need to think on Jesus and the scriptures and when we do, our mind becomes renewed.
- When we love God with all our strength, we will do all we can to follow Him.
- When you have offence in your heart because someone hurt you, it is hard to focus on God.
- God command of forgiveness changes us.
- It starts with the heart then the soul, mind and strength and then it gradually enables you to forgive with all your strength.
Romans 7:14-25 (NLT)
14 So the trouble is not with the law, for it is spiritual and good. The trouble is with me, for I am all too human, a slave to sin. 15 I don’t really understand myself, for I want to do what is right, but I don’t do it. Instead, I do what I hate. 16 But if I know that what I am doing is wrong, this shows that I agree that the law is good. 17 So I am not the one doing wrong; it is sin living in me that does it.
18 And I know that nothing good lives in me, that is, in my sinful nature. I want to do what is right, but I can’t. 19 I want to do what is good, but I don’t. I don’t want to do what is wrong, but I do it anyway. 20 But if I do what I don’t want to do, I am not really the one doing wrong; it is sin living in me that does it.
21 I have discovered this principle of life—that when I want to do what is right, I inevitably do what is wrong. 22 I love God’s law with all my heart. 23 But there is another power within me that is at war with my mind. This power makes me a slave to the sin that is still within me. 24 Oh, what a miserable person I am! Who will free me from this life that is dominated by sin and death? 25 Thank God! The answer is in Jesus Christ our Lord. So you see how it is: In my mind I really want to obey God’s law, but because of my sinful nature I am a slave to sin.
- Kerrin did a Defensive Driving course. He was directed to not hit the cones but by focussing on not hitting them, he hit them every time. He had to change his focus on to steering to the space in between the cones.
- When you want to be healthy all you can concentrate on is the coke and chocolate in the fridge.
- We know we need to do the right thing, but we don’t.
- Sin, addiction, thoughts, temptation are hard to stop focussing on, but eventually we do. We try to become better wives, husbands, fathers, mothers, family members, friends and Christians.
- Sanctification is to process of becoming like God. It is the journey of becoming more like Jesus in our lives.It takes time. We are not perfect, we have to work out our sanctification.
- Justification – who we are when we become a Christian.God looks at you as totally clean of sin.
- Glorification – how we appear when we meet God in our glorified bodies.We all have problems and we need to have God help us.
Our hearts are different and our lives have many challenges.
John 14:15-21 (NKJV)
15 “If you love Me, keep My commandments. 16 And I will pray the Father, and He will give you another Helper, that He may abide with you forever— 17 the Spirit of truth, whom the world cannot receive, because it neither sees Him nor knows Him; but you know Him, for He dwells with you and will be in you. 18 I will not leave you orphans; I will come to you.
19 “A little while longer and the world will see Me no more, but you will see Me. Because I live, you will live also. 20 At that day you will know that I am in My Father, and you in Me, and I in you. 21 He who has My commandments and keeps them, it is he who loves Me. And he who loves Me will be loved by My Father, and I will love him and [c]manifest Myself to him.”
- If we love God with all our heart, He will send us the Helper (Holy Spirit).
- We can’t do it on our own. The Holy Spirit helps us to live our lives as God wants us to.
Galatians 5:19-22 (NLT)
19 When you follow the desires of your sinful nature, the results are very clear: sexual immorality, impurity, lustful pleasures, 20 idolatry, sorcery, hostility, quarrelling, jealousy, outbursts of anger, selfish ambition, dissension, division, 21 envy, drunkenness, wild parties, and other sins like these. Let me tell you again, as I have before, that anyone living that sort of life will not inherit the Kingdom of God.
22 But the Holy Spirit produces this kind of fruit in our lives: love, joy, peace, patience, kindness, goodness, faithfulness,
- Love, joy, peace, patience, kindness, goodness
- There is a process to get fruit.
- When you plant a fruit tree you need to fertilise, water, prune and protect it from the birds before you can pick the fruit.
- Our lives are the same, surrendering to God is a state of repentance.
- It will eventually lead us to strength.
- Get the heart right and then the strength will begin to be worked out.
- Begins in the heart then moves to our soul, mind and then our strength.
- Having a repentant heart helps us to make decisions in our heart.
- Don’t miss the person of Jesus. Love God himself.
- Don’t just love the blessings because if you do, you won’t take instruction.
- God is here to make you holy.
- We need to have Bible Kingdom Culture.
- We need to work to become righteous.
- When you are hungry for God, you will seek after Him.
- Don’t beat yourself up. Give God some space to change your life. Don’t let the devil beat you up. Allow the fruit of the Holy Spirit to grow in you.
- Don’t compromise. It was a command to us to love the Lord our God with all our heart, soul, mind and strength.
- Put God in the number one place. Truly love Him with all your heart.
- Understand the grace of God. He will begin to move you towards Him.
- Don’t beat yourselves up.
- Simply love the Lord your God.
- Loving God is a friendship and a relationship.
- Let Him develop that in you.
- Let the Holy Spirit meet you where you are at.
- Jesus is the lifter of our head– not the bowing of your head.
- Simply love God with all your heart.
Suggestions for Discussion Questions
- Only One God. He is the only one. Discuss what this means to you.
- Do you understand what it means when it is said: God will not take second place?
- Repentance is not just a one off deal. What does this mean to you?
- We know we need to do the right thing, but we don’t. Is this how you feel about your life?