Bethlehem Lutheran Church

37000 Union Lake Rd, Harrison Twp., MI 48045
(586) 791-3030

Spiritual Matters

The Shema (continued)

Posted by bethlehemlutheran on March 16, 2012 at 10:45 PM

The Shema (Deuteronomy 6: 4-9) reminds the Israelites that they owe their loyalty and love to one god, the Lord God Almighty, not to many gods, as the pagans believed. They are commanded to “love the Lord your God with all your heart and with all you soul and with all your strength.” Jesus adds “mind” to the list (Mark 12:29) because of the Greek understanding of the day. Both Scriptures are a call to love God completely, body, mind and spirit (soul).

What does it mean to love God with our minds? Unlike the Hebrews, but like the Greeks, we think of the mind (not the heart) as the control center, the seat of reason. We might say there are two main functions of the mind: being aware of and understanding the world and making decisions based on information we have stored in our minds. Some people have used their power of reason to conclude that God doesn’t exist. Others have used that same power of reason to come to the opposite conclusion. So the first way we use our minds to love God is to decide that there is a God to love. After that, there is an interplay of mind and spirit. More on that next week.

Blessings for your Lenten journey,
Mary

Categories: Mary's Musings

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