One of the scribes came to Jesus and asked him, “Which is the first of all the commandments?”
In responding to the scribe’s question, Jesus first quotes the Book of Deuteronomy, with the same words that Moses spoke to the people in today’s first reading. Jesus goes on the say: The second is this: You shall love your neighbor as yourself. There is no other commandment greater than these. Jesus tells the scribe that the two commandments cannot be considered separately, but are linked together. The scribe, who was earnestly seeking to learn from Jesus, responds with understanding. In other words, the scribe saw this as a way of living. Thus, Jesus responds: You are not far from the kingdom of God. Jesus confirms that the scribe is on the right track.
Throughout the gospels we hear Jesus speak about the kingdom of God. Jesus tells parables to help us understand what the kingdom of God is like. The kingdom of God is about love – which must be so, since God is love. The kingdom of God grows on earth with each loving thought, word and action.
We are not alone in our efforts to love. Therefore, he is always able to save those who approach God through him, since he lives forever to make intercession for them. While Jesus was on earth, He was the servant of humankind. I have come not to be served, but to serve. Jesus’s service continues. He is the eternal priest, forever interceding for us.
Moses spoke to the people, saying: “Fear the Lord, your God, and keep, throughout the days of your lives, all his statutes and commandments which I enjoin on you, and thus have long life.” A life of loving God and neighbor extends into eternal life with the Most Holy Trinity!
May God bless us all always!