We know Jesus was the greatest Bible teacher, but He had been the greatest Bible student before that.
If you’ve ever tried to read the Law of Moses (Genesis, Exodus, Leviticus, Numbers, and Deuteronomy), you know how tedious it can be. Genesis, with all its stories, is not too bad, notwithstanding the genealogies. Exodus has a lot of action in the beginning, but it starts getting boring halfway through. By Leviticus, only the most athletic of readers can keep paying adequate attention. At least this is the experience of most Bible readers in the initial stages.
Imagine then that moment when a religious leader in Israel asks Jesus, “What is the great commandment in the Law?” What would Jesus say? How would you even begin to answer a question like that? Contrary to all expectation, Jesus in one quick breath says that we should love God above all and with all that we are. This wasn’t so hard because it was part of Israel’s Shema. But then He pulls a verse from the middle of Leviticus of all places (“Love your neighbor as yourself.”). Then, if that wasn’t breathtaking enough, He has the chutzpah to say, “Upon these two commandments depend the whole Law and the Prophets.” Whew! He answered for the Prophets as well as Moses, and put every other Bible verse in the right perspective.
The entire exchange would have taken less than a minute. No, less than half a minute! Jesus receives a pop quiz for a final exam on the entire course and aces it without a sweat. No wonder He’s at the head of the class!
We do well to worship Him!
The purpose of this blog is to praise Jesus Christ in terms familiar to those who read the Bible. For a list of verses relevant to this post, see this post on related blog.