In Matthew 22:36-39, Jesus is asked, "Which commandment is the most important?" He responds with “Love the Lord your God with all your heart, soul, and mind and the second most important is similar, love your neighbor as much as you love yourself.”
In Luke 10:39 it mentions that a man wanted to justify his lack of love for some kinds of people, so he asked, “Which neighbors?” Jesus responds with a parable of the good Samaritan (Luke 10:25-37). In this story a Jew traveling on the road from Jerusalem to Jericho was attacked by bandits and left half-dead on the side of the road. By chance a Jewish priest came along who saw the hurt man and crossed to the other side of the road.
A Jewish Temple assistant walked over, and he looked at the hurt man and he also crossed to the other side of the road to avoid him. Finally, a despised Samaritan came along, and when he saw the wounded man, felt compassion for him. The Samaritan soothed his wounds and bandaged them. Then he put the man on his own donkey and took him to an inn, where he took care of him. Jesus asked, “Which of these three would you say was a neighbor to the bandits’ victim?” The man replied, “The one who showed him some pity.” Then Jesus said, “Yes, now go and do the same.”
If we are to reach our world, then we need to see that everyone is our neighbor. We need to understand that every person is made in the image of God and is worthy of love regardless of their beliefs, actions, or attitudes. We need to demonstrate kindness and mercy, not just to those who are nice to us. God so loved the world that He sent His Son Jesus and now He is sending us to share the “Good News” that our neighbors are loved and redeemable by His grace.
This sounds easy, doesn’t it? But we get distracted, we get busy, and we don’t always pay attention to what our neighbors might be going through in their lives because we find ourselves going through hard things and are too distracted with our needs to even notice those around us.
In John 13:34-35 Jesus gives a new commandment to love one another just as He loved them and by this everyone will know we are His true followers. God desires for us to show unselfish concern for others. 1 John 3:18 exhorts us to stop just saying we love people; let us really love them, and show it by our actions.
A neighbor can be anyone around you who needs help, needs a friend, or needs you to pray for them. Ask God to show you how to love your neighbor as you love yourself.
Please join us for the CDM Virtual Prayer Walk - June 9-19, 2020. Remember your fervent prayers avail much (James. 5:16)!