“How we see ourselves, how we conduct our interpersonal relationships are fruitful unto God, only if our relationship with God is according to His commands”
36Master, which [is] the great commandment in the law?37Jesus said unto him, Thou shalt love the Lord thy God with all thy heart, and with all thy soul, and with all thy mind.38This is the first and great commandment.39And the second [is] like unto it, Thou shalt love thy neighbour as thyself.40On these two commandments hang all the law and the prophets.” (Matthew 22:36-40 KJV)
THE 1-2-3 DOMINO EFFECT OF THE TWO GREATEST COMMANDMENTS
**Point 1 – Point 2 – Point 3 Domino Effect**
Let us ensure that the two greatest commandments are always at the forefront of our minds so that we
POINT 1 – Sustain a love relationship with God through a worshipful life (bible study, praise, prayer..) which includes focus on God in all that we do and do them as unto Him.
This is the only way we can
POINT 2 – Love ourselves because it is in this place that we Learn to love ourselves by understanding who we are in God and who He is to us.
As a result of Point 2 out worked from Point 1 of the 1-2-3 Domino Effect, (whatever position we hold in the Body of Christ or society – in God’s eyes a servant’s heart is the mark of an obedient heart – Jesus is our example)
We are able to
POINT 3 – Love our neighbours (anyone: friend, spouse, colleague, acquaintance etc…); this means we are able to demonstrate God’s love through us to others meaning
– we are able to have compassion for people
– empathise with them
– care about their feelings so as to be cautious how we treat them, ensuring we are not doing or saying anything to hurt them nor lording over them …
-treat others as we would like to be treated.
Prayer: Father, help us in our weakness so that we live according to these two greatest commandments. Thank you for answering this prayer in my life and that of my brethren. In Jesus’ mighty name I pray Amen
THE POWER OF FORGIVENESS
Satan exerts himself in his attempt to ruin interpersonal relationships in general and especially those between Christian friends, spouses, ministers, work colleagues and acquaintances, because he is a sly crafty, cunning fool who will do anything to attempt to bring chaos in the harmony that is the 1-2-3 Domino Effect of the Two Greatest commandments.
Let us take heed not to let the hurts inflicted upon us from childhood through to adulthood or what people are doing currently to hurt or upset us (it may not even be deliberate) prevent us from having or sustaining the peace we have in the knowledge that we are lovable or significant human beings created in the image of God and restored as such through Christ for His pleasure and purposes. The born again experience opens the door for us to be healed from lies satan has said about who we are and our worth especially through others. Our healing starts with forgiving all those who have hurt us directly or indirectly and contributed to these lies about our identity and worth.
Forgiveness by God and therefore making peace with Him is conditional to our forgiving others. This is why Jesus included these words in the prayer he taught his disciples to pray 12 And forgive us our debts, as we forgive our debtors. (Matthew 6:14-15 KJV)
There is an assumption therefore that his disciples know that they should forgive their debtors so that God will forgive them.
After this, he emphasised the point by saying:“14 For if ye forgive men their trespasses, your heavenly Father will also forgive you:15 But if ye forgive not men their trespasses, neither will your Father forgive your trespasses.” (Matthew 6:14-15 KJV).
When we forgive, we receive forgiveness from father which means cleansing from all unrighteousness and so a way is made for us to have fellowship with God through the Holy Spirit. Unforgiveness is a decision not to demonstrate the love of God to our “neighbour” (Point 3), it is therefore disobedience and as sin, disobedience also separates us from God and so we are prevented from loving God with all our heart, mind and soul (Point 1). Without loving God, we cannot love ourselves or sustain the unconditional God kind of love (Point 2).
Forgiveness is the key to overcoming satan’s attempts at creating discord, causing contention and hatred between Christians so that they do not demonstrate the love of God for one another (Point 3 of the 1-2-3 Domino Effect). This is often because when people are hurt, they are likely to fall into temptation as they are angry, discouraged, disappointed and begin to exercise thoughts of retaliation which range from either not speaking to the one who has hurt them or doing something to hurt them as well.
The importance of forgiveness is reinforced by Jesus, expressing the heart of God on the matter when he said that
-you must forgive those who have sinned against you not 7 times but 70 x 7 times (Matthew 18:21-22); In other words forgiveness should be a perpetual lifestyle attitude of a children of God.
-when you are bringing your offering to God and you remember that someone has something against you then you must first go and reconcile with them before doing so. (Matthew 5:23-24)
God also cares about that person who has something against you whether they are Christians or not and so should you, is what Jesus is saying. Your “neighbour” (Matthew 22) is not necessarily a fellow Christian and approaching them to make peace means you desire to obey God’s command that you love your neighbour. Your neighbour could also be your enemy, in relation to this Jesus taught as follows:
You have heard the law that says, ‘Love your neighbor’ and hate your enemy. 44 But I say, love your enemies! Pray for those who persecute you! 45 In that way, you will be acting as true children of your Father in heaven. For he gives his sunlight to both the evil and the good, and he sends rain on the just and the unjust alike. 46 If you love only those who love you, what reward is there for that? Even corrupt tax collectors do that much. (Matthew 5:43-46 NLT)
It is evident therefore that the responsibility to cultivate harmonious co-existence (hence expressing the love of God) lies with the disciple of Jesus and forgiveness is the key. When used therefore, this key not only opens the door to a sustained relationship of love with God but it also serves to keep us within the realm of the 1-2-3 Domino Effect (Two Greatest Commandments) cycle all the days of our lives.
To God be the glory great things He has done!
You are blessed, determine to stay blessed!
©Deborah E.Nyamekye 22/01/2016