All of us have read today’s gospel passage, probably many times. I wonder, though, whether we have ever noticed the puzzling question that Jesus asks of this scholar of the law. After directing the man to refer to the law, Jesus asks him “How do you read it?” The question suggests that there were different interpretations of the passage and Jesus wanted to know precisely the question being asked.
There was a scholar of the law who stood up to test Jesus and said,
“Teacher, what must I do to inherit eternal life?”
Jesus said to him, “What is written in the law?
How do you read it?”
He said in reply,
“You shall love the Lord, your God,
with all your heart,
with all your being,
with all your strength,
and with all your mind,
and your neighbor as yourself.”
He replied to him, “You have answered correctly;
do this and you will live.”
We read the scriptures, but don’t we all sometimes interpret them in a way that justifies our worldview instead of an interpretation that convicts us as followers of Jesus? We need to remember that the Word is intended to challenge us. If our scripture study doesn’t makes us feel at least a little uncomfortable, we need to go deeper.
Complacency is not discipleship.