The Bible’s Hardest Command

There are lots of commands in the Bible. Some of them are easy and others are considerably more difficult to follow. For example, there is a command not to boil a kid in its own mother’s milk. This has never been a particular struggle for me. There is another command to not covet your neighbour’s donkey. I’ve never had a neighbour with a donkey that I can remember.

Yet there are other, far more difficult commands. “Love the Lord your God with all your heart, soul, mind and strength.” That one is pretty difficult. “Take up your cross and follow Me.” That one is pretty hard as well.

Yet the hardest of all, I think, is found in Philippians 2:14:

Do everything without complaining or arguing.

Wow. Just take a moment and let that one settle into your heart and mind.

Do everything without complaining or arguing.

Why should this be so difficult?

I think it is because there is very little space and time between my brain and my mouth. Mere milliseconds after I have a thought it can be on its way out of my mouth. In the microseconds it takes for me to react to something happening around me, my great, big food tunnel can begin to yawn open and some stupid, whiny complaint can start to make its way into the world.

All it takes for me to violate this command is for someone else to do something stupid or boneheaded or even trivially incorrect. I’ll complain about the idiots and argue with the nitpickers. All along I’ll feel good about doing my bit to make the world a better place for my fellow people.

The issue is my pride.

What do my complaints say about me? Do they not testify to my own self-importance? Do they not indicate my willingness to put myself first? Do they not reveal just how much I value my preferences rather than other people?

When I argue, what is really going on? Surely I am insisting I am correct and the other person is wrong. Am I right to override them? Are my doubts about someone else a measure of my low understanding of grace?

Tomorrow I want to write about how to make this command a little easier to follow. For today, I want to allow it to really, really challenge me.

Living without complaining and arguing is hard.

It takes God’s grace and my work to change the pride inside of me.


2 thoughts on “The Bible’s Hardest Command

Add yours

  1. (Hello I’ve Appreciate Your Few Last Posts )

    Matthew 22:39

    And a second is like it: You shall love your neighbor as yourself.

    As Yourself… This Mean As Our View Of Ourself. Sinners All But Sinners, Unless There Is Something That Heal And Change You, And, So Your View On Others…And So Yourself…

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