All disciples of Messiah have a choice: the way of life or the way of death. A biblical worldview supports the fact that life is about choices. The path we choose each day will ultimately determine our destiny. Not only is life full of choices, but it is also a progressive journey that never stops. Biblical metaphors that speak of life as a way, a path, a road, or a journey imply movement, the progress of time, and our daily freedom to choose.
Ever heard of the Didache? It is one of the earliest writings by believers in Yeshua that some feel was written as early as 50 CE. It is a manual of practical living instructions written for new Gentile believers in Messiah.
It may even contain material older than many of Paul’s epistles and the Gospel of John. The Didache offers believers today an incredible window into the life of Yeshua-believers at a time when believers functioned as a sect within Judaism and not as a separate religion.
The Didache is a manual to aid Gentile believers in Messiah in making correct choices on the path of discipleship—our journey through life. It reminds us of Robert Frost’s poem The Road Not Taken: “Two roads diverged in a wood, and I—I took the one less traveled by, and that has made all the difference.” When we find Yeshua and truly take up his cross daily, we certainly take the road less traveled.
Every day we have a choice as to the path we will take. There is no middle road. The Didache states, “There is a great difference between the two ways.” We walk either on the path that leads to life and blessing or on the path that leads to destruction and cursing. While the way of death is often easier and more attractive, the way of life leads to true blessing and lasting happiness. Our Master Yeshua calls us to make the tough choice to walk the difficult trail of discipleship.
Love of God and Neighbor
Now the Way of Life is this: First, you shall love God who made you; second, you shall love your fellow as yourself. Whatever you do not want to happen to you, do not do to one another. (Didache 1.2)
The second verse of the Didache lays out two defining and foundational principles regarding the way of life: love of God and love of fellow. This concept, too, goes back to the teachings of Messiah. When asked what commandment he considered greatest of all, Yeshua responded,
You shall love the Lord your God with all your heart and with all your soul and with all your mind. This is the great and first commandment. And a second is like it: You shall love your neighbor as yourself. On these two commandments depend all the Law and the Prophets. (Matthew 22:37-40)
When Yeshua says that all the Torah depends upon these two commandments, he means that they form the foundation for all Torah instruction. In the same spirit, the Didache points to these two commandments as the direction for the way of life. It is on these injunctions that the path to blessing rests.