Love Your Neighbor
As Paul continues to detail the way a follower of Jesus should live, he writes a paragraph outlining the supremacy of love. Here is Romans 8-10: “8 Owe no one anything except to love one another, for he who loves another has fulfilled the law. 9 For the commandments, “You shall not commit adultery,” “You shall not murder,” “You shall not steal,” “You shall not bear false witness,” “You shall not covet,” and if there is any other commandment, are all summed up in this saying, namely, “You shall love your neighbor as yourself.” 10 Love does no harm to a neighbor; therefore love is the fulfillment of the law.” Both music and literature have for centuries extolled the power of love. Huey Lewis and the News had a hit song, “The Power of Love”. The Beatles had “All You Need is Love” and I could go on and on. Jesus boiled all the commandments of God down to “love God and love your neighbor”. There really is a great power to genuine love. Paul shows that sins like adultery, murder, theft, not telling the truth and covetousness are essentially sins against others, sins that originate from a lack of love. “Love does no harm to a neighbor”. Is it possible to truly live like that? Is it possible to live our lives in a way that love drives us, compels us, to do no harm to a neighbor? Do you see how genuine love removes so much sin in our world? Is there anyone in your life to whom you are not loving? If so, why is that? Could I suggest a breakfast or a late night snack of repentance and a willingness to let the Holy Spirit produce love in your heart for this person? When we breathe in genuine love there is no oxygen left for sin. I pray that you and I will take Paul’s words to heart here and allow the love of God to penetrate our hearts to produce change where it is needed.