“Jesus replied, ‘You must love the Lord your God with all your heart, all your soul, and all your mind. This is the first and greatest commandment. A second is equally important: Love your neighbor as yourself.'” – Matthew 22:37-39
Take a minute to read the Ten Commandments. Now, read the scripture reference for this devotion again. Jesus makes us realize the standard is even tougher than we thought. For instance, most of us are pretty confident that we are obeying the commandment, “Thou shall not murder,” but then Jesus sets our world on end with His perspective on the verse. Not only is the actual act a violation of the commandment, but Jesus says our angry thoughts are just as sinful.
Wow. That’s a little tougher than the first reading of the Ten Commandments. Jesus says that God weighs whether our heart and thoughts are in line. Because if we lose our cool with our fellow man, we have broken this commandment on murder! Now that seems unfair doesn’t it? But Jesus is very clear. God doesn’t just judge us by our actions. He also judges us by our thoughts and hearts’ desires. Is that a tough standard to follow? You bet. Yet we are fortunate that God sent His only Son to pay for the many sins we are bound to commit in our day-to-day lives! But not only does He forgive us when we trust Christ, He gives us the inner “want-to” to have our heart as pleasing to God as our actions.
Christ’s standard is the toughest. Yet, in Him is the victory.