Seeing the Great Commandment lived out would satisfy God’s dream.
Pope Francis suggested this yesterday during his midday Angelus address with those gathered in St. Peter’s Square.
Reflecting on the passage from the Gospel of St. Matthew, and Jesus giving the Great Commandment to love your neighbor as you love yourself.
When the Pharisees came together to put Jesus to the test, asking Him which commandment in the Law is the greatest, Francis observed it was an “insidious” question because in the Law of Moses more than 600 precepts are mentioned.
“How can one distinguish, among all these, the great commandment?” he asked.
However,” he noted, “Jesus has no hesitation and answers: ‘You shall love the Lord your God with all your heart, and with all your soul, and with all your mind.” And adds: “You shall love your neighbor as yourself’ (vv. 37.39).
Jesus’ answer, the Holy Father noted, was not ‘a given’ because, among the many precepts of the Jewish Law, the most important were the Ten Commandments, communicated directly by God to Moses, as conditions of the pact of the Covenant with the people.
“However,” he stressed, “Jesus wants it understood that without the love of God and of one’s neighbor there isn’t true fidelity to this Covenant with the Lord. You can do many good things, fulfill many precepts, many good things, but if you don’t have love, it’s all for nothing.”
Jesus, Francis reminded, lived His life precisely preaching and doing what really counts and is essential, namely, love.
“Love gives impetus and fruitfulness to life and to the journey of faith: without love, life and faith remain sterile.”
What Jesus proposes in this evangelical passage, the Pope noted, corresponds to the most authentic desire of our heart, namely that we were created to love and to be loved.
“God, who is Love, has created us to make us participants in His life, to be loved by Him and to love Him and, with Him, to love other people. This is God’s “dream” for man.”
However, to realize it, he said, we need His grace.
Pope Francis concluded, praying: “May the Holy Virgin help us to receive in our life the “great commandment” of love of God and of our neighbor.”
As usual, Pope Francis concluded, wishing all those gathered a good Sunday, a good lunch, and reminding them to pray for him.
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