By Ken Rank
I thought it worth sharing a short note I wrote to a Christian brother trying to understand how love and mercy are the essence of Torah. Here is my reply to him:
The essence of the Torah and Sinai covenant is love and mercy. I know that is not the common view but think about it… who does the Torah (Law) testify of? And that person, what character attributes does he exude? See, if the Torah testifies of Yeshua (Jesus) and Yeshua was the embodiment of the fruits of the spirit which include love, peace and joy…. then how can that which testifies of him not be centered on love peace and joy as well? Yeshua’s actions were not an attempt to abrogate the Torah but rather reveal the spirit behind the letter, the need for this to be on the heart and not stone, the fact that love is the pushing force behind it all. What does that mean? It means that if we love God we don’t serve others or make idols, and if we love neighbor we don’t kill him nor take his wife. True love, doesn’t abrogate the law, it reveals the only way in which one can actually keep it. If we do not walk in love, we fail… if we walk in true love we won’t break the commandments because the commandments are designed around our love for God and neighbor. If we took two large nails and hammered them into a wall leaving them sticking out a ways… and those two mails represented “Love God” and “Love Neighbor.” Then if we had 613 pieces of paper each with one commandment on them…. we would be able to hang each commandment on one or the other nail. The 613 commandments are summed up in the 10, and the 10 are summed up in love God and love neighbor. That is why Messiah said:
Matthew 22:40 On these two commandments hang all the law and the prophets.