“And thou shalt love the Lord thy God with all thine heart, and with all thy soul, and with all thy might…” (Deut. 6:5).
The understanding of this verse is often one-sided and intended to illicit a response of exclusive worship from the people of God. However, there is also the understanding that this is soliciting a response of exclusivity based upon the Divine initiative from God in seeking to establishing and everlasting covenant with the people He has chosen to engage in this type of relationship. God is promising to be solely committed to the people of Israel, despite their constant failures.
In this commitment to faithfulness and exclusivity lies the deeper Hebrew understanding that God is not only “one Lord,” but that He is God alone (v.4). With this understanding in mind, God is able to demand an exclusive relationship from the people with the expectation that they will respond in mutual agreement based upon the demonstration of God’s power within their lives. No other “god” responded when they cried out in affliction from the bonds of Egypt because there is/was no other one who could.
In our contemporary context, God is able to make the same exclusive demand of us. In the midst of our turbulent times, there is/was no one who is/was capable of bringing about the salvation we needed. God has demonstrated, repeatedly, His ability to bring forth “so great salvation,” and that He alone is worthy of such exclusive claims to our lives as well. Under the New Covenant, God is still soliciting this exclusivity from us as well. It is up to us to respond to His Divine initiative in order to truly engage in an exclusive relationship with “the One in Whom is God alone.”