“Love God. Love your neighbor.” That’s the message of today’s Gospel. “Love God. Love your neighbor.”
What does it mean to love? We think the word means we have nice feelings about somebody or something else. But Jesus must mean something else. He says we’re to love God with all our heart, soul, and mind. In another account, He adds “strength.” This can’t mean we’re to just have strong feelings about Him. It means we’re to show that love.
So who are we to love? God! Who is He? He’s David’s Son yet David’s Lord. He’s Jesus! Love Him more than anything else. Then love your neighbor as yourself. That means love others as if they are you. Those others are everybody: everybody here in this building, in this county, state, nation, world.
Why? Because Jesus died for you and for all! That’s why you should love Him more than anything else. That’s why you should love everybody just as much, if not more, than yourself. He has taken away your sins. He gives you eternal life. What a great gift! We can never get anything better.
So we love Him in response. We’re thankful for what He’s done for us. So we put Him first in our lives. We want to please Him all the time. Part of that is helping those around us however we can whenever we can.
But how can we do this? We’re sinners! We’re programmed to only care about ourselves and nobody else. We aren’t able to please God. The only way we can do it is if He gives us His Holy Spirit to direct and rule our hearts. When we hear God’s Word, He gives us His Spirit. He’s working in you now, and He’ll keep working to lead you to love God and neighbor and to show it in what you do. Love God and neighbor? God help me! Amen.