Lesson 2: Serving God Unconditionally

Course: Fathers 1 2-3
Lesson #2 of 2

Series: Chapters of the Fathers – Pirkei Avot

Teacher: Rabbi Elan Adler

42Views | Published: October 30, 2014 | Revised: April 19, 2021

This lesson covers the famous saying of Antignos of Socho, who followed after Shimon the Righteous.  Do we serve God for ulterior motives, such as for recognition or reward?  Rabbi Adler says we should not settle for serving God for ulterior motives, Jews might turn towards God, the first place in the journey can come from for ulterior motives, but rather seek to serve him for what Rabbi Adler terms "interior motives".


Bob's Application: I find it quite refreshing that this issue is raised so quickly in the Chapters of the Fathers. Why is it not addressed more frequently in churches?  Perhaps it is because we are under such pressure to 'get the work done' that we are willing to take any help whatsoever, as long as they are willing. And what often happens is that we attract people into certain service roles that are trying to fill a 'hole' in their heart rather than letting the works flow out of a love for our Lord. What Rabbi Adler is asking us to do is essentially to take on the very nature of God in our love towards God.  He loves us without condition and the Rabbi is simply teaching us that Jewish wisdom states that this same love we have received is that which should be reflected back to God directly.  May the Lord help us all to serve Him with unconditional love.

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