Leviticus 19:9-18; Romans 13:8-10
You shall not take vengeance or bear a grudge against the sons of your own people, but you shall love your neighbor as yourself: I am the Lord. Leviticus 19:18 (ESV)
And a second is like it: You shall love your neighbor as yourself. Matthew 22:39 (ESV)
For the commandments … are summed up in this word: "You shall love your neighbor as yourself." Romans 13:9 (ESV)
Throughout the Scriptures we are commanded to love our neighbor. Our passage in Leviticus 19 gives us concrete application of what this means. The Law of Moses and the teaching of the prophets explained and applied this command to the lives of God's people.
Jesus reinforced this command to his disciples and taught its meaning through such parables as the Good Samaritan and the Rich Man and Lazarus (Luke 10; 16). Paul in his instructions for Christian living to the Christians in Rome explained the importance of this commandment for living in a pagan society.
Even though we know this commandment as Christians, it is another thing to actually live it out. To love our neighbor is not always easy. We must rely on God's grace and love to dwell in our hearts and to motivate and animate our actions.
We are called by God to repent from selfish forms of living and to enter the glorious walk in the Spirit in which God enables us to perform those good works that he has prepared beforehand for us to do.
This begins in the home. Loving our neighbor begins with loving our spouse, our children, and others in our household.
Loving our neighbor means to reach out and serve those near to us where we live. Terry and I have been blessed twice during this COVID-19 season with neighbors who have mowed our front lawn.
Some of us have reached out to brothers and sisters to call on them, check-in with them and assist them with any practical needs. God's love compels us to go beyond the four walls of our home to minister to those around us.
As we read in Leviticus 19, this commandment demands that we also consider the needs of the poor, those in our community who don't have a home, food, or family.
Our daily prayer should be, "Lord, love your world through me."
Lord God, you are good and you have blessed me with your mercy and goodness in Jesus Christ. Fill me with your Spirit and lead me in your path of love today. Forgive me for my own selfish living. Help me to consider the needs of others and not just my own. Open my eyes to see those who are in need right now. Guide me to those people today that you want me to call, pray for, or serve in some way. By your grace help me to begin in my own home with my family to love them as you love me. Amen.
"They'll Know We Are Christians by Our Love" (Performed by Jars of Clay) Click here.