Love Your Neighbor #233

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. (Romans 13:8-10)

Love is active, the outward expression in words and deeds of the goodwill and benevolent care toward another. We use the word “love” to describe often describe emotion (from the beauty of a sunset to our family to our family pet) so much so that we may not even grasp its true meaning. We must learn to speak of love – and act in love – in ways that please God. Here, the apostle says we are under a moral obligation to “love one another” (v. 8). Quoting from Leviticus 19:18, he explains such love means loving “your neighbor as yourself” (v. 9). He further explains in verse 10: “love does no harm to a neighbor” (v. 10). The commands of God have embedded within them love for God and love for others. You cannot separate true obedience from genuine love. Since loving others is fulfilled by obeying the command to love your neighbor as yourself, then obeying God’s commands is also how you love Him.