Matthew – Day 2 – The Shema
oday we will begin our study like many Jewish people begin their day – by reciting the Shema. “Shema” means to hear. In Jesus’ day, reciting the Shema meant a renewing of your relationship with God. It was done daily – if not several times during the day. When a person recited the Shema they were doing several things: (1) celebrating God’s promise of grace; (2) acknowledging allegiance to God alone; and (3) accepting the reign of God in his or her life.
The Shema is found in Deuteronomy 6 right after the Ten Commandments were given.
Read Deuteronomy 6:4-9 (don’t forget to read out loud).
When Jesus was asked what the greatest commandment was, he quoted Shema for the first part of His answer: “Love the LORD your God with all your heart and with all your soul and with all your strength.”
Reread Deuteronomy 6:4-9. What did God want the Israelites to do with the commandments that He gave to them?
God desires for us to know His commandments and His desire is for His believers to live His commandments. He wants us to talk about them – a lot! When we sit at home and when we walk along the road. When we lie down and when we get up. He wants us thinking about it all the time. He even suggests putting reminders out – tying them as symbols on our hands – or writing them on the doorframes.
What can you put out to serve as a reminder for you to think about these commandments?
Today we will begin placing God’s Word in our hearts. Begin memorizing the Shema: Deuteronomy 6:4-5. We will recite it each day before we begin our Bible study to make sure that we are focused, and to celebrate God’s promise of grace, to acknowledge our allegiance to Him alone, and accept His reign in our life.
“Hear, O Israel. The LORD is our God. The LORD alone. Love the LORD your God with all your heart and with all your soul and with all your strength. Amen.”
Ray Vander Laan – That the World May Know