SUNDAY- 31st WEEK IN ORDINARY TIME –B
I Reading: Deuteronomy 6:2-6: Listen, Israel: You shall love the Lord your God with all your heart.
II Reading: Hebrews 7:23-28: Because he remains forever, Christ can never lose his priesthood.
Gospel: Mark 12:28-34: This is the first commandment. The second is like this.
The Question about the Greatest Commandment, Mk 12:28-34
Why should we love Lord our God and our neighbour? In what does loving one’s own neighbour consist? Today’s readings vividly explain and give the answers to the above questions.
Jesus summed up God’s commandments into one: to love God through loving one’s neighbour. The Jews turned God’s command into a daily prayer. In today’s reading Moses urges his people “to fear God and to keep his commandments.” Moses was not telling his people “to be afraid of God”, but to revere him as we revere our own father and mother, and to obey him out of love.
God promises the three gifts to those who keep his commandments:
1. A long life
2. A numerous family
3. All sorts of material blessings during life.
We should not be keeping in our hearts grudges, which mean we must forgive those who sin against us. We must support or help or rescue people in need. It is all about actions and deeds not so much of words or thoughts. We must be always united in God’s love, mercy and forgiveness.
Jesus had met his third group of challengers, the Sadducees. In their minds, His threat to their security remained. He had silenced and routed them. Jesus used the occasion to teach man the greatest provision and duty of human life: love. Love will provide for every need man has; therefore love is the greatest duty of man.
1. A Teacher of the Law approached Jesus (v.28)
a. Observed Jesus’ arguments
b. Posed a test question: Which is the important commandment?
2. The greatest commandment (v.29-31)
a. The Lord our God, The Lord is one
b. The Lord our God is to be loved
c. The Lord our God demands that we love our neighbours as ourselves
3. The great vastness of the commandment (v.32-34)
a. So great it causes honest and thinking men to agree
b. So great it exceeds all offerings and sacrifices
c. So great it almost assurances salvation to those who understand it
Thought: People are to love God supremely and love their neighbours selflessly without any discrimination because all are the children of one God.