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What Is The Essence Of The Way Of Jesus?


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What is the Essence of the Way of Jesus?

 

The essence of the Good News of the Gospel as taught by Jesus is very simple and can be understood by even a child. (Note - I really don't worry too much about the historical nature of Jesus just like I do not worry if Krishna was not a historical person - for me, the primary question is: "Are his teachings transformational?").

 

My focus is on following Jesus as Lord which means following the radical grace of his Great Commandment - "Love God and Love one another" rather than Pharisee-style legalism.

 

In one of the most defining moments of his ministry, Jesus was asked which commandment was the greatest. Matthew 22:36-39 “[Jesus], which is the great commandment in the law?” And he said to him, ’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. On these two commandments depend all the law and the prophets.”

 

In the Gospel of John, he reclarified the Great Commandment. Jesus said, "A new commandment I give to you, that you love one another; as I have loved you, that you also love one another" (John 13:34). Or as I like to put it - Love God through loving others in the same spirit as God's love for you.

 

I believe this teaching of the Great Commandment of Jesus fulfills the intent of the Golden Rule and surpasses it with the higher intent of love.

 

"Therefore all things whatsoever ye would that men should do to you, do ye even so to them: for this is the law and the prophets." Matthew 7:12, King James Version. "And as ye would that men should do to you, do ye also to them likewise." Luke 6:31, King James Version.

 

A central tenet to my personal theology is the Rule of Love, which stated simply claims that if a person's actions are motivated by unselfish, sacrificial love and are not intentionally hurtful to others, such actions are in accordance with the teachings of Jesus and are, thus, lawful in the eyes of God. I reject any so-called doctrines which contradict the Great Commandment of Jesus and the Rule of Love which is how we apply it. Therefore, I hold that we should reject any teachings or interpretations which would contradict the intent or inhibit the practice of the Great Commandment or imply that God would contradict the Great Commandment.

 

By following the Great Commandment, I hope to order my Ruling Loves in a Heavenly manner - Love of God, Love of Others before Love of the World (Power, Money, Prestige, etc.) and Love of Self. Obviously Hellish Ruling Loves would be in an inverse order. To me, heaven and hell are often states of consciousness that we choose by what we love. I find that daily mindfulness of God through devotional practices of chanting or singing to the Lord (I tend to use a shortened version of the Jesus Prayer - "Lord Jesus Christ, have mercy on me."), drumming, meditation, and prayer helps me to better follow the Great Commandment of Jesus ("Love God and Love one another") in my daily life by always remembering Him. And this helps me to become a better person.

 

 

Below is the link for the Facebook Page that I administer for the Society for Jesus Realization which is nonsectarian and supports the progressive and inclusive practice of Christian mystical and

devotional practices for anyone who may be interested:

 

http://www.facebook.com/pages/Society-for-Jesus-Realization/164307366969275

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