Tag: Neighbor

The ones closest to us

A.B. Simpsonby A.B. Simpson

If the household be too little for the lamb, let him and his neighbour next unto his house take it according to the number of the souls —Exodus 12:4

If the household be too little for the lamb. . . . What does all this mean for us as redeemed men and women? Surely, this-that we have no right to claim the purchase of the Savior’s blood for ourselves alone, and that we are guilty of selfishness, dishonesty and base in gratitude if we can be content to be saved without having done everything in our power to give our fellow men an equal opportunity of eternal life. Have we understood this? Have we lived it?

But who is the neighbor with whom we are to share God’s Lamb? He is spoken of here as the one that is next to us, the one in closest contact with us. Surely, that means that God brings people into touch with us in order that we may be stewards of His grace to them. The people in our families, the fellow traveler, friends in our social circles and people with whom we work-these are the neighbors to whom we owe a spiritual responsibility. Have we met it according to our utmost ability?

by A.B. Simpson

The Antidote for Sin

John MacArthurby John MacArthur

“Let all that you do be done in love” (1 Cor. 16:14).

The more you love God, the less you will sin.

Scripture and personal experience teach us that sin always has its consequences. When you harbor unconfessed sin, you dishonor God and forfeit the blessings and joy He desires for you. Prolonged sin might even bring His chastening through pain or illness.

That’s what happened to Corinthian believers who partook of the Lord’s Table in a sinful manner (1 Cor. 11:27-30). Paul warned the rest of the congregation to take careful spiritual inventory of themselves to avoid incurring a similar punishment. In chapter 13 he reveals the root of their problem, saying in effect, “Some of you are physically ill because you’re sinning. Start loving God and one another as you should, and your ailments will disappear.”

Love is the antidote for sin. When a Pharisee asked Jesus which of the commandments was greatest, Jesus replied, “‘You shall love the Lord your God with all your heart, and with all your soul, and with all your mind.’ This is the greatest and foremost commandment. The second is like it, ‘You shall love your neighbor as yourself.’ On these two commandments depend the whole Law and the Prophets” (Matt. 22:37-40). If you love the Lord and your fellow man, you won’t sin against them. That’s why Paul said, “He who loves his neighbor has fulfilled the law. For this, ‘You shall not commit adultery, You shall not murder, You shall not steal, You shall not covet,’ and if there is any other commandment, it is summed up in this saying, ‘You shall love your neighbor as yourself.’ Love does no wrong to a neighbor; love therefore is the fulfillment of the law” (Rom. 13:8-10).

Love is your highest calling and the greatest contribution you can make to others. But it’s possible to neglect it or misunderstand its characteristics.

by John MacArthur