The Jesus Creed from Mark 12:29-31
“The most important commandment,” answered Jesus, “is this:
‘Hear, O Israel, the Lord our God, the Lord is one. 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: ‘Love your neighbor as yourself.’ There is no commandment greater than these.”
READING THE JESUS CREED TOGETHER
I read a lot, but only a few books recharge my personal faith and make a difference in my life. Even fewer books make me want everyone to read them so that they share in the spiritual formation. I feel this way about Scot McKnight’s book, The Jesus Creed.
In a large church like the one I pastor, we’re always looking for ways to bring everyone together as “one Body.” God has set a high target for his people:
“How good and pleasant it is when God’s people live together in unity! … For there the Lord bestows his blessing, even life forevermore” (Ps. 133).
To help fashion this unity, starting this week our entire church—children, youth, and adults—will be reading and discussing The Jesus Creed. We will immerse ourselves in Mark 12 and Matt. 22. We want The Jesus Creed to give us a deeper understanding of the particular Scriptures about which Jesus says, “These commands are pegs; everything in God’s Law and the Prophets hangs from them” (Matt. 22:40).
A creed is simply a statement of core doctrine or belief. We see this in historic creeds like the Apostle’s Creed (c.390 AD) or the Nicene Creed (c.325 AD). The Jesus Creed, winner of Christianity Today’s Best Book of the Year, has a clear and compelling biblical message centered on Jesus’ core doctrine, “Love the Lord your God with all your heart and with all your soul and with all your mind and with all your strength. And the second one is: love your neighbor as yourself” (Matt. 22:37-40, Mark 12:29-31, Luke10:27). As well, Dr. McKnight, as Professor of New Testament at Northern Seminary and the author/editor of over fifty books, has created a range of well-written, age-appropriate materials and DVDs to allow all of our church to join in the discussion.
We are privileged that each week Dr. McKnight and I will have some blog dialogue about The Jesus Creed and our progress at Cherry Creek. Scot will answer some questions that come up. You can find this discussion on my “Jesus Creed” blog posts, or at Scot’s blog at Patheos.com.