We often wonder about the depth of Jesus’ statement when He said, “Love the Lord your God with all your heart and with all your soul and with all your strength and with all your mind” (Lk 10:27). It’s clear for King Josiah that one primary means of application was obedience.
2 Kings 23 is an awesome chapter. It open with Josiah reading “all the words of the Book of the Covenant.” He renews the covenant – “to follow the Lord and keep his commands, statutes and decrees will all his heart and all his soul” (v. 3). He then proceeds to purge Jerusalem of every form of idolatry, and I mean every! Verses 4-24 may actually shock you, as it reveals quite a list of sinful activities in which they were engaged. Then, verse 25 again says Josiah turned to the Lord “with all his heart and with all his soul and with all his strength, in accordance with all the Law of Moses.” These bookends form what we call an inclusio.
It’s somewhat funny how we often want to go so deep into Scripture (e.g., what does the Lord mean by “all your heart, soul …”) when often the best application is so simple. God wants our hearts; He wants us to come to Him and obey! Is there really a better way of showing we love Him? Yes, legalism always lurks around the corner, but that topic is for another day. Today, let’s focus on giving God our whole self in our obedience to Him.
“Jesus, You are so worthy of my obedience. You have proved time and again that when I place my faith in You, it is not a displaced trust full of empty promises. You are a faithful God who delivers on Your Word. Help me see the value in obeying You, even when it fails to meet my logic and even when it may bring trial.”