When Jesus was asked, “Which is the greatest commandment in the Law?” He responded, “You shall love the Lord your God with all your heart and with all your soul and with all your mind. This is the great and first commandment. And a second is like it: You shall love your neighbor as yourself” (Matthew 22:37-39).
Loving God and loving your neighbor…according to Jesus, these are the greatest things you can do! In fact, “On these two commandments depend all the Law and the Prophets” (Matthew 22:40).
As Paul is writing in our current text (Philippians 2:19-24), he speaks about his understudy, Timothy. And as he describes Timothy, he describes him as a man who loves God and also has a love for others. What could be a greater description of a person than this? It was clear that while others had a heart and mind for themselves (see Phil 2:21), Timothy had a servant’s heart to first love God and then to love other people (See Phil 2:20-21). And even though Paul was in prison, he, too, was still concerned about the welfare of the Philippians, so much so that Paul decides to send his very best assistant to serve them in a time of need. In fact, Paul makes the following statement about Timothy: “I hope in the Lord Jesus to send Timothy to you soon…for I have no one like him” (Phil 2:20).
Two men – Paul and Timothy – both in love with the Lord Jesus. And their love for God flows out into their daily lives so that they love other people. Yes, these men truly lived out the greatest commandments. They loved God and loved their neighbor.
How about us…Do we first love God with all our hearts? Do we then love our neighbors as ourselves? Paul loved those Philippians, even while in prison. Timothy was ready to serve the Philippians with genuine care. These men were ready to live out what they believe. Are we?
Rev. Adam Mumpower, Senior Pastor