Well, I did the introduction of our study on Jesus Creed: Love God, Love Neighbour. As you can see the book "Jesus Creed" has a big influence on me. It's something that i have been thinking about for the past year. I've been revisioning the things that i have been believing and restructuring the road of my spiritual formation. So in a way this year is sort of like an experimental and practical passageway of what i believe. So i guess you can say for this year a resounding theme would be constantly Experimentation.
Back to the study...
We were discussing on how a christian looks like, something about image. I believe that we project certain images as christians and we were asking the question what image should a christian project. Following that we asked the question what forms us or what helps us conform to this image. Stuff that influence us enough to form us to an image.
I believe that each image we project is the product of the things or stuff we do to influence us.
So, we moved to a passage in Mark 12:28-33.
This is what Scot Mcknight calls Jesus Creed. In a nut shell; love God, love neighbour. For Jesus this is the thing that we should use to form us to the Christian image. The emphasis is love and that is loving God and Loving neighbour. Love is the epitome of what marks us as Christians: John 13:34-35.
Now we must not stop there. When we say the creed's vision is love, and that loving God means loving other people as well, we have to understand that left to our own vision or interpretation we might practice it in a different way. So for this to work, Following Jesus is the way of the creed. If we are to understand the creed properly we have to take it by Jesus' way.
To end it, we challenged each other to recite the creed daily and whenever we think about it as we go along through the day or weeks or whenever we remember it. And to top it off we all agreed that having a creed for reciting is a good thing! And that is from a church tradition (SIB) that does not have creeds.
To me this is a sign of Emerging Church or Emergent thinking. I am for that.
Below is a sample of the study that i did. Needs some revisions though.
Jesus Creed: Loving God, Loving Others
1. How should a Christian look (image) like?
2. According to your answer, what are the things that help form us into this ‘look (image)’?
Shema: Jewish Creed found in Deuteronomy 6:4-5. This is the first creed that Jewish children are taught to recite every day.
Jesus’ vision for what forms us (Spiritual formation)
[Mark 12:28-33; Luke 9:57-62]
“Hear O Israel, The LORD our God, the LORD is One.
Love the Lord your God with all your heart,
With all your soul, with all your mind,
And with all your strength”
The second is this, “Love your neighbor as yourself.”
There is no commandment greater than these.
Here Jesus amended the shema (the first part of the commandment above) but revised it by adding “love your neighbor…” (Leviticus 19:18). So for Jesus loving God means or is equivalent to love others as well. (Check out these verses Romans 13:8-10; Galatians 5:5-6; James 2:8-13; 1 John 4:19-21)
Do you think that we separate loving God and loving others (in a way that loving God is defined as another thing and loving others means another thing)? Why?
What are your thoughts on having a creed for recitation to help you in spiritual formation?
The creed’s main content and emphasis is LOVE. Though recitation is a main characteristic of a creed/ any creed, the intent of reciting a creed is not merely meant for vain repetition without life. The recitation should inform, remind and form us to the creed’s vision: To Love God, Love Neighbor.