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Love God, Love Your Neighbor

August 8, 2011

Pretty straight forward really. Over two thousand years ago it seems that the people of God had no problem distilling what God wanted for his people down to these two basic concepts. Love God and love your neighbor.

Does that still stand? Luke 10 records an exchange between an expert of religious law and Jesus. The question is what do people do who have eternal life.

The man responds with love God and love your neighbor. Jesus says that if you do those two you will live. So what is so wrong with focusing on those two things as a church?

I really don’t know what to do. Love God and love your youth group? Love God and love your children’s ministry? Love God and love the preaching? Love God and love the technology? Love God and love the building? I don’t know.

Jesus says that these two bring life. Is it wrong to focus only on these two commands? If a teacher could distill God’s truth to these two why can’t we? Paul repeats this idea in Romans 13:8-10, and Galatians 5:14. James repeats the refrain in James 2:8 and explains what this love means.

I have been told that people don’t listen because we are a small church in the old part of town in a building that needs repair. I hear all of that but why aren’t Jesus words enough? What do I have to prove? I have actually had people reject our fellowship because they say we don’t focus on the Bible and the Holy Spirit. How is it that this teacher of the law can distill the Bible down to two commands, the ones we focus on, and yet we are not Bible based or Spirit-led?

If you don’t want to be a part of our fellowship that is fine, just please don’t attack what we are trying to accomplish and belittle our efforts because it is actually all about loving God and loving your neighbor.

6 Comments leave one →
  1. Nicole permalink
    August 8, 2011 7:45 pm

    Hi Darin! Can I just say, “Yes, yes and yes.” The “Love God, Love Your Neighbor” attitude of New Heights is what actually brought us here. You want my opinion? I hope we never change our building or our kind of fellowship or our kind of worship. It’s real. And that’s what people need. I thank New Heights for sticking to the two basics and for drawing in some members of my family whom I was fearful were too wounded by the church to return. Love on!
    Nicole Taulman

  2. Terri permalink
    August 9, 2011 12:39 am

    I am saddened that anyone would think New Heights does not focus on the Bible or Holy Spirit. I have regularly attended church for over 30 years in two different churches. I started New Heights 2 months ago and it is the first time in about 5 years that I really feel like I went to church. Sunday morning services are always based on scripture with ALOT of verses from the Bible used in the service. Actually there is more scripture read here than other churches I have attended. Every Sunday during worship there is time for those needing prayer to pray with an elder and then a time if you want to give your life to God. I have recently visited several churches and have found that praying one on one with someone and the alter call (salvation call) is now missing in churches. Sure the building is old, so what! I am not there to worship a building. I am there to worship God! New Heights does not try and entertain you with Sunday morning concerts as their music and video games for kids ministry. It is biblically based great worship with great music because it is sincere.
    For a refreshing change New Heights does “church” with a focus of loving our neighbors and being the hands and feet of Jesus. The congregation can not be more friendly and am so glad I found New Heights.

  3. August 10, 2011 2:53 pm

    Darin – Home run man. I wish we would all focus on loving God and others. I admit that I don’t always know how to do it, or I’m not able to do it, or, sometimes, I don’t want to do it. But I must. If we focused on these two items that would consume our whole lives. Good post.

    Read this morning that someone asked D.L. Moody if he was filled with the Holy Spirit. He said, “Yes. But I leak.” Great humlity!

    Glad camp went well for you guys. Maybe next year I can drive over for a day and we can visit. Might have done it this year, but our last child is only home for … one more week. Not wanting to be away more than necessary.

    And Nicole – hello! Haven’t read your blog in a while. I’ll link over. And glad you are going to New Heights.

  4. August 10, 2011 3:28 pm

    Thanks Warren, that means a lot to me. Nicole and Terri thanks for your feedback and your envolvement at New Heights.

  5. E.D. Harden permalink
    September 21, 2012 9:57 pm

    Hello, friend! I came upon this page by doing a Google image search. I love the illustration that shows a person giving (and receiving) love to God and others. Can you direct me to the source of this image? Blessings as your church seeks to fulfill the Greatest Commandments!


  1. Love Your Neighbor | hifzan shafiee

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