Deuteronomy 6: The Shema

Hear, O Israel: The Lord our God, the Lord is one. Love the Lord your God with all your heart and with all your soul and with all your strength. These commandments that I give you today are to be on your hearts. Impress them on your children. Talk about them when you sit at home and when you walk along the road, when you lie down and when you get up. Tie them as symbols on your hands and bind them on your foreheads. Write them on the doorframes of your houses and on your gates. -Deuteronomy 6:4-9

Deuteronomy 6 includes the passage known to the Jewish people as the Shema or saying, “Hear, O Israel: The Lord our God, the Lord is one. Love the Lord your God with all your heart and with all your soul and with all your strength.” It was and is to be said every day by every person who follows the Law of the Lord in the Jewish tradition.

In fact, when Jesus was asked, “What is the greatest commandment?” he answered with this same passage. Jesus did not change the Law; he came to fulfill it. It only made sense that Jesus agreed with the teaching that to love God fully was the highest of commands, encompassing all others.

How often we forget this! We pursue wealth, relationships, fitness, and material possessions with more regard than God. Most people plan their vacation or even their weekend with more care than their pursuit of the Creator. Let us not simply say we love God, but live like it. Let us begin with the Saying, the Shema, and continually remind ourselves that our lives are about him and his glory rather than our own.

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Dillon Burroughs is the author and coauthor of numerous books and is handwriting a copy of all 31,173 verses of the Bible at HolyWritProject.com. Find out more about Dillon at Facebook.com/readdB or readdB.com.


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