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"The entrance of thy words giveth light (Psalm 119:130)."

What's Most Important

"Teacher, which is the greatest commandment in the Law?"

Jesus replied: "'Love the Lord your God with all your heart and with all your soul and with all your mind.' This is the first and greatest commandment. And the second is like it: 'Love your neighbor as yourself.' All the Law and the Prophets hang on these two commandments." {Matthew 22:36-40 NIV}

Jesus said the two most important commandments are these:

  • Love God.
  • Love your neighbor.

Both of these commandments are essential for preserving your mental health. So, let's look at them.

First, love God. There are two elements involved in keeping this commandment.

  • "Loving God means keeping his commandments, and his commandments are not burdensome (1 John 5:3 NLT)." You have to make a good faith effort to obey Scripture.
  • "You must love the LORD your God with all your heart, all your soul, all your strength, and all your mind (Luke 10:27 NLT)." This is an emotional requirement which requires effort. What comes naturally is to be angry at God, at some level, since life is often difficult.

"If anyone does not love the Lord, that person is cursed (1 Corinthians 16:22 NLT)."

Second, love your neighbor. "That's a hard one," as a client once said. It is a hard one. But Christians do have the ability to obey Scripture. And making the effort is worthwhile:"Love erases many sins by forgiving them (1 Peter 4:8 NIRV)."

Loving others is an essential element of successful anger management. Sometimes, it is the only way to forgive.

So, the next time someone's past or current behavior becomes problematic, try applying these two commandments.

  • Love God.
  • Love your neighbor.

You may be surprised at how fast the spiritual attack falters and your peace returns.

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Scripture quotations marked (NIV) are taken from the Holy Bible, New International Version®, NIV®. Copyright © 1973, 1978, 1984, 2011 by Biblica, Inc.™ Used by permission of Zondervan. All rights reserved worldwide.

The "NIV" and "New International Version" are trademarks registered in the United States Patent and Trademark Office by Biblica, Inc.™

Scripture quotations marked "NKJV™" are taken from the New King James Version®. Copyright © 1982 by Thomas Nelson, Inc. Used by permission. All rights reserved.

Scripture quotations taken from the New American Standard Bible®, Copyright © 1960, 1962, 1963, 1968, 1971, 1972, 1973, 1975, 1977, 1995 by The Lockman Foundation.
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Scripture quotations marked (NLT) are taken from the Holy Bible, New Living Translation, copyright © 1996, 2004, 2007 by Tyndale House Foundation. Used by permission of Tyndale House Publishers, Inc., Carol Stream, Illinois 60188. All rights reserved.