Hebrew Roots/Torah Lifestyle/Guidelines
HONORING YAHWEH GOD
Yeshua summed up the whole law in one verse:
"You shalt love the Lord your God with all your heart, and with all your soul, and with all your strength, and with all your mind; and your neighbor as yourself." Luke 10:27
Speaking again to the Pharisees, He confirmed that this is the greatest commandment in the law, saying, "This is the first and great commandment. And the second is like it: You shall love your neighbor as yourself. On these two commandments hang all the law and Prophets." Matthew 22:34-40 (verses38-40)
This is the sum total of all the other laws, precepts, statutes and commandments. How awesome!
Everything is contained in these two principles:
1. Love Yahweh God with every part of your being, and
2. Love your neighbor as yourself.
This is the basis for inheriting eternal life and the sum total of what is required to honor Him in our lives. To love Him without measure - with all one's heart, all one's mind and with all one's strength. And then, to love one's neighbor as oneself.
If loving Him is the sum total of the Law, then it is a love measured by keeping His commands and not by our emotions toward Him. To love Him with all our heart does convey that our affections are toward Him and that He is the pre-eminent love of our life, that we put Him and His principles first in everything.
To love Him with all of our mind, means that our thoughts, our intentions and our purposes are directed to be in agreement with His Word which will have its outworking in us loving Him with all of our strength in what we do, so that all of our actions are set to glorify Him, and not to please ourselves.
To execute this in our lives we must understand what is required of us, how these basic principles are applied in situations, and therefore how we are to live. It is not so difficult to know how to love our neighbor as ourselves, if we apply the "do unto others as you would have them do to you" principle. But how do we expand the basic principle of loving Yahweh God with all of our being? We must go to the scriptures.
THE LAYERED APPLICATION
Having understood the basic principle which in essence, starts with our own attitude and mind-set, we then go to the next layer in the ten commands which give the first practical level of applying the basic principles. The first four commands have to do with our worship of Yahweh God and the other six, with our service to our fellow man. Then the greater expansion from that is in the rest of the scriptures.
==THE TEN COMMANDS== - LOVING GOD & YOUR NEIGHBOUR
The first command;
"I am Yahweh your God, who brought you out of the land of Egypt, out of the house of bondage." "You shall have no other gods before Me" Exodus 20: 2-3 This is calling us to acknowledge Him as the Supreme being, God of all, our Redeemer and our Deliverer. He alone is to have first place in our lives and nothing else is to be allowed to contend for that position.
The second command;
"You shall not make yourself a carved image - any likeness of anything that is in heaven above, or that is in earth beneath, or that is in the water under the earth; you shall not bow down to them nor serve them. For I, Yahweh your God, am a jealous God, visiting the iniquity of the fathers upon the children to the third and fourth generation of those who hate Me, but showing mercy to thousands, to those who love Me and keep My commandments." Exodus 20: 4-7 We are not to place a representation of anything before our eyes which will cause us to come into servitude to it Any and every thing which we allow to have dominion over us will have its repercussions upon our descendants through the bondage to the elemental forces of this world which are controlled by Satan. Whereas His mercy is extended to those who Fear Him and keep His commandments.
The third command;
"You shall not take the Name of Yahweh your God in vain, for Yahweh will not hold him guiltless who takes His Name in vain. Exodus 20: 7 Taking His Name in vain, or dishonoring His Name has many applications, from using it to make a vain oath to not using it at all, which is by default, ignoring His name. It is an insult to not use His Name, Yahweh.
The fourth command;
"Remember the Sabbath day, to keep it holy. Six days you shall labor and do all your work, but the seventh day is the Sabbath of Yahweh your God. In it you shall do no work: you, nor your son, nor your daughter, nor your male servant, nor your female servant, nor your cattle, nor your stranger within your gates. For in six days Yahweh made the heavens and the earth, the sea, and all that is in them , and rested the seventh day. Therefore Yahweh blessed the seventh day and hallowed it." Exodus 20: 8-11 Keeping the seventh day, the Sabbath, is one of the four practical ways in which we honor Yahweh God. It is a day to be kept set aside from the issues of our livelihood and from the affairs of this life. A day reserved for Him for the whole of our household to rest and be spiritually and physically refreshed.
LOVING OUR NEIGHBOUR
Our obedience to the rest of the commands will be determined by how much we honor Him personally. So, in the keeping of these first four, the relationship which we have with Him will be reflected in our actions with our neighbor. In reverencing Him above all, we will reverence those made in His image also.
"God is love, and he who abides in love abides in God, and God in him." 1 John 4:16b In reverse, lack of love for our neighbor is a reflection of the fact that we do not really love God. In other words, we are not really keeping those commands which pertain to honoring Him in our lives. As John says, "Beloved, let us love one another, for love is of God; and every one who loves is born of God and knows God. He who does not love does not know God, for God is love." 1 John 4: 7
"If someone says,'I love God,' and hates his brother, he is a liar; for he who does not love his brother whom he has seen, how can he love God whom he has not seen? And this commandment we have from Him: that he who loves God should love his brother also." 1 John 4:20-21 We have the commandment to love our brother out of our love for God. Quite often the hindrance to being able to love our fellow-man is in the breakdown of the first two commands. We do not love God with all of our being and/or we have something or someone else that is occupying the seat of our affections. That person may be "Self" in first place, which is idolatry of ourselves. In which case, we need to repent and seek His forgiveness.
The rest of the commands toward our fellow-man come in the order of their importance: No. 5 - Honoring our parents as the source and providers of life and sustenance - Mark 10:19 No. 6 - Murder in its origin in the heart as hatred onto the final act - Matthew 5:21-26 No. 7 - Adultery in all forms back to its origin in lustful desires - Matthew 5:27-32 No. 8 - Stealing in all forms of taking what is not rightfully yours to take - Matthew 5:38-42 No. 9 - Swearing falsely against the known truth - Matthew 5:33-37 No.10 - Covetousness to possess what belongs to another - Matthew 6:19-34
This forms the framework of Yahweh God's holy laws, built upon the basic principles which Yeshua gave us, which are fleshed out in detail in the rest of the scriptures.
Regarding the second part John tells us that if we don't love our brother whom we then we do not love God whom we haven't seen. So we have to take out of this, that our love for Yahweh God is expressed in our actions toward our fellow man.
"If someone says,'I love God,' and hates his brother, he is a liar; for for he who does not love his brother whom he has seen, how can he love God whom he has not seen?? And this commandment we have from Him: that he who loves God should love his brother also." 1 John 4:20-21
"For this is the message that you heard from the beginning, that we should love one another" 1 John 3:11