“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.’” Matthew 22:37-40 (NIV)
Today’s excerpt from Dr. Wilson’s book, Fasting Forward: Advancing Your Spiritual Life through Fasting (pp. 72–74):
The Cross is the greatest symbol of Christianity around the world. Whenever you are in the world, whether you speak the language or not, you identify a cross with Christianity. The Cross remains God’s plus sign to the world because of what Jesus did on a cross 2,000 years ago.
The Cross embodies and reveals the Christian life. The traditional cross was made of two wooden beams—one horizontal and the other vertical. In this way, the Cross represents the entire Christian life, which is both vertical and horizontal. Jesus died on the cross to bring us to God and connect us vertically with our Heavenly Father. He also died to bring us to one another and connect us horizontally with our fellow believers.
The Christian life is lived in these two planes:
Þ We are to live in pre relationship with God, and we are to live in pure relationship with one another.
Þ We are to serve God, and we are to serve one another.
Þ We are to love God, and we are to love one another.
Þ We are to submit to God, and we are to submit to one another.
Fasting is one of the most vertical of all spiritual disciplines. The question is not whether we need both vertical and horizontal activity. Like the chicken and the egg, they are dependent on one another. In God’s order, connection with Him takes precedent over connecting with one another. The vertical must come first.
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