Buscamos inspiração na pessoa de Jesus para fazermos a nossa jardinagem do espírito. Ele foi o jardineiro por excelência. Soube cultivar as sementes da fé para produzirem plantas que fornecem abrigo e sustento. Este blog é um esforço para fazer a nossa jardinagem das passagens bíblicas à luz de Jesus que é digno de servir como nosso modelo.
Convidamos os leitores a aprenderem com ELE e fazerem a sua própria jardinagem.
sexta-feira, 13 de janeiro de 2017
LOVE AS COMPASSION
the Lord your God
with all your heart
and with all your soul
and with all your mind.
This is the first and greatest commandment.
And the second is like it:
Love your neighbor as yourself.
All the Law and the Prophets
hang on these two commandments.
Matthew 22:37-40 (read 22:34-46) - NIV
It is difficult
to speak of love without trivialities. It is one of the most discussed and
least experienced subjects. The text highlights love. I approach it with the
fear of perpetuating banality. Jesus is talking about the basics, the
essentials. It is important to understand the heart and mind of Jesus' message.
Maybe we’re like
the little girl, Cynthia, who wrote a letter to God:
I bet it is very hard for You to love all people
in the world. Our family has only four people and sometimes I can’t do it.
We cannot speak
of love without first defining it. In popular usage, love has connotations of
sentimentalism such as: adoration, passion, affection, etc. But love (agape) in
the Greek New Testament means "to desire the good of others". That in
itself is impersonal, but Jesus carried it further to include the meaning:
"to exercise compassion”. The spirituality of Jesus is
"com-passion" (to suffer with) or share the pain of others.
Such a love
would be holistic, including heart, soul and mind. It would produce an
integrated life, recognizing the Divine in all areas of living. The opposite
would be schizophrenic love in which we divide our lives into separate
compartments such as church, world, spiritual, material, discourse, practice,
belief, action, cult, work leisure, etc.
Many people have
invented a separate, tyrannical God who issues decrees, gets pissed-off and
zaps people when they don’t live up to His expectations. Therefore, a penal
solution is necessary where atonement must to be made to compensate for
offences. This concept makes Jesus to be only the “sacrificial lamb”, being a
go-between in order to satisfy justice. God and humanity remain separated. But
with a broader understanding of God as being Love, the compassion of Jesus
becomes an example of at-one-ment (oneness or union) among people and with his
In modern terms
compassionate love could be defined as the state of “oneness” with all that
surrounds us. This oneness would enable us to love not only our neighbor as
ourselves but see ourselves as part of all that exists. Compassion implies
“feeling along with” and helps us to have a positive and creative relationship
with the entire world in which we live. I would extend at-one-ment beyond the
Divine and human realms to include all of life.
and historian *Karen Armstrong writes, "All the religions of the
world claim that spirituality has value only when it results in the practice of
compassion." But in practice religions generally fail to achieve their
ideal. The value of a religion is not in its belief but in the quality of life
it produces. Christians attach great importance to doctrine. Protestants and
Catholics are separated because they have differences in church doctrine. There
are divisions between Protestants because of different interpretations of the
Holy Spirit. The Pharisees put religious practices above the welfare of human
beings. In contrast Jesus said that the legal norms of Moses and the prophets
of social justice are founded in love.
(compassion) is above any religious doctrine or practice. Laws and rules exist
because of the lack of love. With love, there is no need for them. Each person
would spontaneously contribute to the collective welfare. The problem is that,
once created, laws, rules and doctrines are placed above love. We idolize our
systems and harm others in order to preserve them. Instead of compassion we
practice correction or punishment. But according to the NT, "The greatest
of all is love." (1 Corinthians 13:13) This should be our goal.
*The Battle for God: Fundamentalism in Judaism,
Christianity and Islam (I recommend the reading of this book to better
understand what is happening on the international scene).
22:34-46 – NEW INTERNATIONAL VERSION (NIV)
Hearing that Jesus had silenced the Sadducees, the
Pharisees got together. One of them, an expert in the law, tested him with this
question: “Teacher, which is the greatest commandment in the Law?”
Jesus replied: “‘Love the Lord your God with all your
heart and with all your soul and with all your mind.’ This is the first and
greatest commandment. And the second is like it: ‘Love your neighbor as
yourself.’ All the Law and the Prophets hang on these two commandments.”
Whose Son Is the Messiah?
While the Pharisees were gathered together, Jesus
asked them, “What do you think about the Messiah? Whose son is he?”
“The son of David,” they replied.
He said to them, “How is it then that David, speaking
by the Spirit, calls him ‘Lord’? For he says,
“‘The Lord said to my Lord:
“Sit at my
until I put your enemies
If then David calls him ‘Lord,’ how can he be his
son?” No one could say a word in reply, and from that day on no one dared to
ask him any more questions.