Tuesday, May 4, 2010

motes and beams

I have had some thoughts on religion that I want to share.

In Matthew 22, on of the Pharisees asks Jesus

36. Master, which is the great commandment in the law?
37. Jesus answered saying, Thou shalt love the Lord thy God with all thy heart, and with all thy soul, and with all thy mind.
38. This is the first and great commandment, and the second is like unto it.
39. Thou shalt love thy neighbor as thyself.
40. On these two commandments hang all the law and prophets.

I think that it is necessary to love God in every way, because when we do, we trust that His commandments will be for our good even when we don't understand how.  That makes it possible to live them.

I think the second law is explained in Matthew 7.

3. And why beholdest thou the mote that is in thy brother's eye, but considerest not the beam that is in thine own eye?
4. Or how wilt thou say to thy brother, Let me pull the mote out of thine eye;and, behold, a beam is in thine own eye?
5. Thou hypocrite, first cast out the beam out of thine own eye; and then shalt thou see clearly to cast out the mote out of thy brother's eye.

I think that the beam that Jesus refers to is a failure to love others as ourselves. And it is a huge problem to not love others.  We can only see how to help others when we love them.  By comparison, all other flaws are motes, whereas failure to love is a beam that gets in the way of everything.  Not just helping others, but every interaction.

When Jesus said that "On these two commandments hang all the law and prophets", I think he was explaining how we are to save ourselves and others, and that it is simply and sincerely though loving God and mankind.  I think that when those two commandments are kept, then keeping the rest of God's commandments follows more easily.

I can think of zillions of reasons that it is hard to love others as ourselves.  I struggle with that.  It is easy to love my family, but hard to love annoying or dishonest or mean people.  It's something for me to work on and it is hard for me, but I am trying to do it.  I have a lot of growing up to do.

1 comment:

Carroll said...

Miriam, you are one of the most loving people I know. You are an example to so many.