Alan Clark (5
Now may the Lord direct your hearts
into the love of God and into the patience of Christ.
—2 Thessalonians 3:5
Jesus said the first and greatest commandment is, "You shall
love the Lord your God with all your heart, with all your soul,
and with all your mind" (Matthew 22:37). Mark's Gospel adds the
word "strength" to this statement (see Mark 12:30).
To break it down, the heart, for the Hebrew mind, spoke of the
core of one's being, while the soul referred to emotion. It is
the same word that Jesus used when He cried out in the Garden of
Gethsemane, "My soul is exceedingly sorrowful, even to death"
(Matthew 26:38). And loving God with all our mind carries the
idea of moving ahead with energy and strength.
So to put it all together, genuine love for the Lord is
intelligent. It is feeling. It is willing. And it is serving.
Some people love God with all of their minds, but there is no
heart in it. They love to study. They love to be theologically
correct. But there is no passion in their lives. On the other
hand, some people love God with all of their heart and their
passion and their emotion, but they haven't disciplined
themselves to study the Bible. As a result, they are easily led
astray. We need all of these things in play to love God as we
I know people who are sticklers for correct doctrine, yet many
of them are miserable, mean, arrogant, and condemning. They will
take the truth and use it like a sledgehammer in the life of
another person. I also know people who are very active and busy
for God, but their love for Him seems to be lacking.
If we can learn to love God with all our heart, soul, and mind,
then our lives will find their proper balance.