Mark 12:31

The second is this – ‘You must love your neighbor as you love yourself.’ There is no commandment greater than these.”

hold on there
not so fast
love is never

talk beyond
all you like
it is ever grounded
in here

no generality
without particularity
ever stood a test
in time

Partnership circles out in all directions. I put an “*” in Neighb*r to remind myself that this is an open category that is always larger than I’m ready for.

It takes only the first chapter in Genesis to know that we can’t say G*D without also saying Neighb*r or images of G*D. The claim is that one-ness, revealed in the partnering of G*D and Neighb*r, is basic to our engagement with meaning.

Against this, is the limiting factor of our acculturation as sung in “You’ve Got To Be Carefully Taught”.

Sabin-2110 looks at the commandments:

By interweaving these three parts, Mark shows Jesus speaking as a scribe himself, that is, as a teacher of Scripture. Mark shows Jesus using a method typical of Jewish Scripture scholars and Wisdom teachers of the first century. The effect of this interweaving is to suggest that love of God implied love of neighbor and that both together are what constitute true worship.

In some ways this is the most important of the two commandments. Loving G*D is the easy religious response. To ask what it means to love G*D is the jump Jesus takes to again reveal his BIG (Beloved Image of G*D) authority. Loving of Neighb*r is a first act that shows one is loving G*D.

The command to love is ἀγαπήσεις (agapēseis, you will love), present in both commandments, is always found in communal relationships.

Mann481 reflects on the Leviticus context Jesus quotes:

The command by Jesus is set over against a command not to nurture hatred against one’s fellow, not to take vengeance or to bear ill-will. At the very least, therefore, we have enlightened self-interest in the sense of regard and concern for one’s fellow in not wishing for him or her what we would not wish for ourselves. Perhaps the best translation of agapē (given the current debasing of the word “love in contemporary English) is “sacrificial compassion.”

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