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  • Pastor Trevor Killip

Verse Memorization: The Shema

Ready for another one? Don't worry if you're still working on memorizing last week's passage (Numbers 6:24-26). When we have longer selections for a particular week it's okay not to have the full selection memorized by the end of the seven days. However, you should have at least a good handle on it, and ought to be pretty close to fully memorizing the verses. Ideally, you'll continue to review these verses as we progress to new ones, allowing you to strengthen the weak points.


This week we are memorizing Deuteronomy 6:4-5:


Hear, O Israel: The LORD our God, the LORD is one. You shall love the LORD your God with all your heart and with all your soul and with all your might.


These two verses start the Shema of the Old Testament. The Shema consists of verses 4-9, of chapter 6. The Shema is a daily prayer in Jewish tradition and it's called the Shema because that's the first word in Hebrew, שְׁמַ֖ע, to hear or to listen.


If you would like a greater challenge, you can memorize the whole Shema from verse 4 through verse 9. Otherwise, verses 4-5, are fine for now. I would encourage you to read chapter 6 at some point this week to understand the context and emphasis of this command which is given by God to His people.


Verses 4-5 call Israel to pay attention to both who God is and what He has said. Israel is to remember, that Yahweh, who is their God, is one. That is, there is not another like Him. He is one of a kind, unique, and unlike any other, and thus should be obeyed in all that He commands. What follows in verse 5 flows out of that truth. Since Yahweh is this one of a kind God, Israel is to love Yahweh with their entire being, with all of who they are. Their heart, soul, and strength. These two verses make up the greatest commandment that Jesus references in Matthew 22:37 and Mark 12:29-30.


(Logos Bible Software)

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