With All Your Heart

With All Your Heart

Mark 12:28-34
And one of the scribes came up and heard them disputing with one another, and seeing that [Jesus] answered them well, asked him, “Which commandment is the most important of all?” Jesus answered, “The most important is, Hear, O Israel: The Lord our God, the Lord is one. And you shall love the Lord your God with all your heart and with all your soul and with all your mind and with all your strength.’ The second is this: You shall love your neighbor as yourself.’ There is no other commandment greater than these.”

The commandment above, which Jesus quoted from Deuteronomy 6:4-5, is a well-known passage of scripture. Jesus says that loving the Lord with “all of your heart and all of your soul and all of your might” is the most important commandment. The seeming simplicity of this commandment could make it easy to overlook, but what Jesus calls the greatest commandment is worth pausing a moment! The emphasis that the Bible, and Jesus himself, place on the idea of wholeheartedness cannot be overstated. God is serious about having all of our hearts. He doesn’t want some of our love or a bit of our time. His doesn’t desire to be just a part of our Sunday routine. He’s the Creator of the universe. He’s the King of Kings and the Lord of Lords, and He wants all of us. Some variation of the phrase “wholeheartedness" can be seen hundreds of times throughout the Bible and especially in the Old Testament. Here are just some of the things that God specifically says to do “with a whole heart:”

• Love Him (Deut. 6:4-5)
• Seek Him (Deut. 4:29; Jeremiah 29:12-13; Psalm 119:2,10; 2 Chronicles 15:15)
• Serve Him and keep His commandments (Deut. 10:12-13; 1 Samuel 12:24; 1 Chronicles 28:9-10)
• Repent and return to Him (2 chronicles 6:38-39; Joel 2:12-13; Jeremiah 24:7)
• Trust Him (Proverbs 3:5)
• Rejoice and Exult in Him (Zephaniah 3:14)
• Give offerings to Him (1 Chronicles 29:9)
• Observe His law (Psalm 119:34)

Everything we do for God should be done with our whole heart, and that has to start with love! The Bible says in James 1:8, “But let him ask in faith, with no doubting, for the one who doubts is like a wave of the sea that is driven and tossed by the wind. For that person must not suppose that he will receive anything from the Lord; he is a double-minded man, unstable in all his ways.” The opposite of a whole heart is a divided heart (profound, I know) and a divided heart will inevitably lead to a divided mind (Prov. 28:19). We see from the above scripture that double-mindedness will hinder us from receiving from God in faith. That’s not because God doesn’t still desire good things for us. He does! However, if He doesn’t have all of us, we won’t be able to receive all that He has for us. Romans 8:32 says, “He who did not spare his own Son but gave him up for us all, how will he not also with him graciously give us all things?” God gave His son, the most precious thing that He had, and Jesus gave his very life for us. He only has good things planned for us because He is only good, holy, and pure. There is no shadow of darkness or turning in Him, and He desires your love. The God of universe wants your all, and there is no safer place to surrender! So, let’s fulfill the greatest commandment that’s ever been given and love God, who loves us more than we’ll every know, with all that we have—all of our hearts, all of our souls, and all of our minds. He is worthy of nothing less!