And these words that I command you today shall be on your heart. You shall teach them diligently to your children, and shall talk of them when you sit in your house, and when you walk by the way, and when you lie down, and when you rise. Deuteronomy 6:6-7
Exactly what “words” is this passage talking about? Immediately proceeding today’s verses is one of the most sacred scriptures ib all the Bible: the Shema.
“Hear, O Israel: The LORD our God, the LORD is one. You shall love the LORD your God with all of you heart and all of your soul and all of your might.”
The Hebrew people were commanded to place these important words on their heart. This means put them into the very core of one’s being. But also teach them to the children so that these words sink deep into the core of their being. Make these words the identity of the entire self, the family, and all of the Hebrew community. And these words are to be with them day and night, as they talk the talk and walk the walk.
Even the next two verses say to wear the Shema on their forehead so that they see it everywhere they go. It also commands them put these words on the front door and gate to remind them that the LORD is to be loved when they go out into the world and come back from it.
Not unlike last Friday’s reflection, this passage is about living the life. Love for the LORD our God is to be the very core and essence of our existence.
How well are you loving the LORD your God? Is it with all your heart, soul, and might? Are you living the life? Are you teaching your children to love the LORD?
Don’t take my word for it that these words are essential. Listen to what the Master says:
And one of the scribes came up and heard them disputing with one another, and seeing that he 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.” Mark 12:28-31