THURSDAY, SEPTEMBER 1
13 For you were called to freedom, brothers. Only do not use your freedom as an opportunity for the flesh, but through love serve one another. 14 For the whole law is fulfilled in one word: “You shall love your neighbor as yourself.” 15 But if you bite and devour one another, watch out that you are not consumed by one another.
Love your neighbor as yourself
This passage highlights that we use our freedom in Christ no to pursue worldly pleasures but through love serve one another. Paul makes a startling statement in verse 14, that the entire law. When New Testament writers refer to the “Law”, they are referring to the 613 “laws” that are found in the Torah which is the first 5 books of the Bible (Genesis, Leviticus, Exodus, Numbers, Deuteronomy). Jesus sums up the entire law in one word in the statement: “Love your neighbor as yourself”. By truly loving our neighbor as ourselves we fulfill the whole law.
In baseball, the most fundamental coaching advice is “Keep your eye on the ball”. When you keep your eye on the ball, you eliminate a plethora of other issues…getting off balance, pulling your shoulder, and changing eye level. In a similar way, Love you neighbor as yourself is a fundamental of following Jesus. To put this into practice is to eliminate unhealthy behaviors and fulfill a life that honors God!
We live in an age of extreme individualism. It is more important than ever for us to remember that loving our neighbor as yourselves in fundamental to our faith!
Why is it so easy to forget to “love your neighbor as yourself”?
Thank you for your Word. We pray that by your Spirit, Galatians 5:13-15 would change us into the likeness of Christ. We ask by your strength that we would love our neighbor as ourselves. Grant us the humility to see that life is not about us, that our lives are meant to be for your glory and the good of neighbor. Open our eyes to see where we can step in the love in a godly way. We pray we would have the courage to step into these spaces with no hesitation. This is all for you and your glory, Lord! We pray these in the your name by the power of the Holy Spirit. Amen.