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June 12, 2022- #4839 Music & the Spoken Word

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Conductors: Mack Wilberg and Ryan Murphy
Organist: Andrew Unsworth
Announcer: Lloyd Newell

“Give,” Said the Little Stream1
Music: William B. Bradbury
Lyrics: Fanny J. Crosby
Arrangement: Ryan Murphy

Hear Him
Music: Ryan Murphy
Lyrics: Wendy Randall

Lisa Lan
Music: Welsh melody
Arrangement: Andrew Unsworth

O Splendor of God’s Glory Bright
Music: German hymn tune
Lyrics: St. Ambrose, trans. Louis F. Benson
Arrangement: Mack Wilberg

Where Is Love?, from Oliver2
Music and Lyrics: Lionel Bart
Arrangement: Michael Davis

Love One Another1
Music and Lyrics: Luacine Clark Fox
Arrangement: Mack Wilberg

And Then Shall Your Light Break Forth, from Elijah
Music: Felix Mendelssohn
Lyrics: Scripture

  1. From the album Teach Me To Walk In the Light.
  2. From the album Showtime.

The Spoken Word

The Greatest Commandments

Long ago, a lawyer asked Jesus which of the commandments is the greatest. He certainly had many to choose from, among hundreds of decrees from scripture and the law. With clarity and wisdom, Jesus responded: “Thou shalt love the Lord thy God with all thy heart, and with all thy soul, and with all thy mind. This is the first and great commandment. And the second is like unto it, Thou shalt love thy neighbour as thyself” (Matthew 22:37–39).

Perhaps the lawyer thought Jesus would prioritize the commandments for him. But the Lord did something even more valuable: He summarized them. Instead of implying that some commandments are less important, He taught that they are all—in essence—expressions of love.

Imagine how the world would be different if our actions were consistently motivated by love for God and love for our neighbor, whether that neighbor is across the street or across the world. Communication technologies continue to make our world smaller and our “neighborhoods” bigger. Connecting with others has never been easier, and yet too many people feel disconnected.

In a popular musical from years ago, the orphan Oliver has known only hunger and loneliness, surrounded by uncaring adults. One night, after being sent to sleep in a cellar, Oliver asks a question that so many still ask today: “Where is love?”1

We can each be part of the answer to that question. We can’t solve every problem or dry every tear. But we can start, as Jesus taught, with love for God. When we feel love for Him and from Him, He helps us know how to extend that love to His children, our neighbors in this world. Despite our deepest differences, we all share the same basic needs: not only for safety, shelter, and sustenance but also for belonging, purpose, and love.

Where is love? It is found whenever we open our heart to someone else, whenever we put the needs of others before our own, whenever we set aside prejudice and listen. These are things we all can do.

Where is love? It’s in each of us as we love God and love our neighbor.

  1. See Lionel Bart, Oliver! (1968).