COMMANDMENTS OF JESUS
Jesus gave many imperatives – below are ten that Jesus commanded often, they are given for reflection as to how to conform our lives to the life Jesus commands us to live.
1. Love As I Have Loved You – the “new” and “greatest” commandment (John 13:34)
- Is the “greatest” commandment of Jesus the greatest commandment for me?
- What is love for me – standing with a person in good times and bad, for better or worse, in failure and success, in darkness and light?
- What healthy boundaries do I need to have in my life to be able to love?
- Do I believe Jesus does want me to love the way He loves and gives me the power to do so?
2. Change Your Attitude – the “first” commandment Jesus gave (Mark 1:15)
- Am I open to growth, challenges, new insights and experiences that will unlock new ways for me to live, worship, work and play?
- Do I realize that there are blind areas in my life that need to change and need the help of others to see?
- Do I believe that Jesus is calling me to a deeper change than just my behavior, but rather my heart, my attitudes and the source of sinful behavior?
- Am I open to honest criticism of my behaviors, attitudes and ways of living?
- Am I gentle with myself as I go through the growing pains of change?
3. Do Not Be Afraid – the commandment Jesus gave most often (John 14:27)
- Of the two basic motives in life – love and fear, which do I choose the most?
- Has fear prevented me from accepting responsibilities, new challenges, speaking the truth, living a free life?
- Why would Jesus give this commandment more than any other, over 80 times?
- Has fear caused me to wallow in guilt, force my opinion on others, try to control others to meet my expectations?
4. Forgive – “seventy times seven” (Matthew 18:21)
- Why would Jesus insist that forgiving is essential to entering His Kingdom?
- Why do people hold on to the poison of revenge, resentment and hatred?
- What are the consequences of an unforgiving heart, what are the consequences of a forgiving heart?
- Does Jesus command us to forgive more for our sakes or for the sake of the person who needs to be forgiven?
- Am I able to ask for forgiveness, and if not, why not?
5. Stay Awake “you do not know the hour or the day” (Matthew 25:13)
- How conscious am I of my actions – do I go through life reacting to events or making choices in a responsible way?
- Am I aware of the will of Jesus in the conflicts of society and the world, current events, social justice issues, a world of extremes (power, wealth, freedom)?
- Do I live mindful of choices I have in the present moment or hold onto the past which is over and the future which does not exist?
- Do I take time each day to meditate on the presence of God in my life and periodically take blocks of time to reflect on God’s wonders?
6. Believe in the Good News – Jesus’ mission to each and for each of us (Mark 1:15)
- Is Jesus a Person who has come to bring me joy, fulfillment, peace, freedom and love or do I experience in my religion guilt, a lack of confidence, false humility, overbearing demands, and burdens too heavy to carry?
- Are the Gospels (Good News) a source I turn to for freedom or an obligation I need to read from time to time in the Bible?
- Is my attitude about myself one of gratitude or embarrassment, optimism or pessimism, freedom or confinement, joy or disappointment, love or fear?
- How does the Lord call me to proclaim, share and live the Good News?
7. Follow Me – our unique call from Jesus (Matthew 16:24)
- Do I believe Jesus has a unique call for me that He has given to no one else and that no one else can do or be?
- What do I think that call may be?
- Does my fear of new challenges prevent me from following what I know is of God?
- Do the material things of my life and the comforts and securities I have amassed prevent me from following what I know is of God?
8. Give to the Poor – the road to “perfection” and treasure in heaven (Matthew 19:21)
- Do I believe Jesus is telling the truth when He says, “Whatever I do for the least I do for Him.” or do I think He is exaggerating?
- Do I believe the worse condemnation in the Sacred Scriptures from Jesus is for those who do not help the poor (Mt. 25:41)?
- Am I aware that my most precious wealth (family, friends, resources, faith, talents etc.) are all gifts from God that need to be shared with those less gifted?
- What “possessions” bring me true joy here on earth and can I take with me after I die?
9. Pray – the gift to be with Jesus (Matthew 26:41)
- Do I believe Jesus calls me to be His friend more than He calls me to be His servant (John 15:15)?Do I spend real time in quiet prayer so that I can grow in a deeper relationship with my God?
- Is my prayer based on a relationship with God whom I desire to know better, or an obligation to “get in” a set amount of prayers to appease God?
- Do I believe Jesus is present with me and desires me to be with Him when I choose to pray whether or not I am distracted or not distracted, bored or excited, disturbed or at peace?
10. Go In Peace and Be Cured – Jesus desire for all of us of faith (Mark 5:34)
- Do I believe Jesus truly wants me to live in peace and be cured of my physical, emotional and spiritual diseases?
- Am I able to hand my diseases over to the Lord or do I have to fix them myself before I can approach God?
- Do I have the faith not to lose heart when my cry for help appears not to be heard by God, but continue to ask for the Lord’s peace and cure?
- The peace of this world is an absence (absence of war, absence of conflict in life) – what is the Peace of Jesus, a Peace that this world cannot give?
-Dennis JW O’Donnell