Canvey Methodist Church Worship Services 24th October 2021

Sunday Evening 24th October​


Theme: We will care for ourselves and those around us


1) Call to Worship : Mark 6:31- 

31 Then, because so many people were coming and going that they did not even have a chance to eat, Jesus said to them, “Come with me by yourselves to a quiet place and get some rest.”


2) As we are gathered


3) Opening Prayer and Lords Prayer 


4) Mark 12: 28 - 34


The Greatest Commandment


28 One of the teachers of the law came and heard them debating. Noticing that Jesus had given them a good answer, he asked him, “Of all the commandments, which is the most important?”


29 “The most important one,” answered Jesus, “is this: ‘Hear, O Israel: The Lord our God, the Lord is one.[e] (or the Lord our God is one Lord) 30 Love the Lord your God with all your heart and with all your soul and with all your mind and with all your strength.’[f] (Deut 6:4 and 5), 31 The second is this: ‘Love your neighbour as yourself.’[g] (Lev 19:18), There is no commandment greater than these.”


32 “Well said, teacher,” the man replied. “You are right in saying that God is one and there is no other but him. 33 To love him with all your heart, with all your understanding and with all your strength, and to love your neighbour as yourself is more important than all burnt offerings and sacrifices.”


34 When Jesus saw that he had answered wisely, he said to him, “You are not far from the kingdom of God.” And from then on no one dared ask him any more questions.


5) A new Commandment I give unto you.


6) Sermon


Jesus had just been debating with the Sadducees about life after death and about who would be married to whom in heaven. 

One of the teachers of the law had overheard this well reasoned discourse and liked Jesus’ debating style. He then asked a question of Jesus about his own specialist subject, the Law of Moses. Which of all the laws, he asked , is the most important and Jesus without hesitation answered him, quoting from two Old Testament books, Deuteronomy 6:4-5 and Leviticus 19:28. I say quoting two OT books because what he said tends to be thought of as his original words and teachings. They are not, but Jesus made them central to everything that he said and did.

The teacher asked for one law which is the greatest of all, but Jesus gave him two.


“‘Hear, O Israel: The Lord our God, the Lord is one.[e] (or the Lord our God is one Lord) 30 Love the Lord your God with all your heart and with all your soul and with all your mind and with all your strength.’[f] (Deut 6:4 and 5), 31 The second is this: ‘Love your neighbour as yourself.’[g] (Lev 19:18), There is no commandment greater than these.”


It sounds simple doesn’t it; These two laws sum up all of the Ten Commandments that Moses brought down with him from his mountain top encounter with God. Indeed, if a person were to put these two greatest commands into practice then all of the others would automatically be being observed as well. 

So what makes this work? Why is this command the most important? The answer is that this law demonstrates the close relationship that exists between our acknowledging Almighty God as Lord of All and Living a healthy and balanced life. When this law is obeyed, in putting God first, then healthy living and relationships follow. However, when it is not obeyed and God is not put first then then discord results.

So how is God’s world doing in relation to this golden rule of living?

How are you and I doing?


It starts with God. God who actually exists, as one unity, God who is one in nature and He is there for us to know personally. How does a person do this?  We do this by putting him before everything else. There is really nothing more important for a person than to love God. 

When we fall in love the person concerned fills our thoughts every moment of the day and our emotions are deeply affected. We may even go off our food as we daydream about our beloved and as we long for their company. Loving God, says Jesus, will also affect us deeply. We are to love him with our emotions (with all your heart), with our inner selves, ( and with all your soul’, with our intellect (with  with all your mind) and with our actions and activities. ( and with all your strength).


But says Jesus, loving him is only one one side of the equation of faith; one side of the seesaw of daily living  if you like. What is on the other side? 

On the other side is how we set about loving others. Jesus teaches that we are to love everyone else along the way and with the same intensity and commitment as we love ourselves.

This comes beyond sheer feeling and emotion. It is also about commitment, about stickability and about passion. It is also, as we heard this morning, about looking after ourselves that we might more effectively look after others.


Sadly things appear to have slipped a great deal concerning this golden rule of living in Western culture today. Instead the balance between loving God and loving our neighbours as ourselves has changed radically to instead be focussed mainly upon individual needs and rights to the exclusion of most other things.


I have my rights,

This is what I think.

Please “Like” my comment 

Subscribe to my blog or YouTube channel

Think my way or else your views don’t count

Through it all, I did it my way.

Me too

My way or the highway.


Is there space made for God in all of this ?

For most in Western Society the answer is no, and we have ended up with a one sided rule where only a skewed version of love of self predominates.


As individuals and as a society we do ourselves and our communities no favours by ignoring both parts of the golden rule of Jesus ``loving God first and then loving our neighbours as ourselves”.


Suspicions grow, tempers get frayed, friends fall out with each other and society fragments into special interest groups and tribes of  like minded people who view everybody else (who might take a different view) with suspicion, often hostility and sometimes with a desire to cancel it irradiate.


That is not a Christ- like approach. The church of Jesus is the body of Jesus today and is called to welcome all who are seeking God. 

May we all be inspired and enabled by the Holy Spirit to love as Jesus loves.


To “Love the Lord our God with all our heart and with all our soul and with all our mind and with all our strength and to ‘Love our neighbours as ourselves. Amen.


7) Take my life and let me be

8) Offering and Prayer 

9) Communion

10) Prayers  For Others

11) Will your anchor hold.

12) Benediction.