Love Your Neighbor
In a time when nationalities seem to be enemies, who is our neighbor?
“Love your neighbor as yourself” is one of Scripture’s best-known principles.
Of course, people tend to forget that the prior command is, “Love the Lord your God with all your heart and with all your soul and with all your mind and with all your strength” (Mark 12:30-31).
It can be humanly challenging to love our neighbors if our hearts aren’t first as they should be in loving God.
In the first five books of Old Testament, “Love your neighbor” is only mentioned one time. But love of strangers is noted 36 times. Biblically, a neighbor is any other human being, including strangers.
The United States is a multi-racial, multi-ethnic country, a nation of immigrants, so it would seem God’s command to love strangers is as applicable for us as it was for the Ancient Israelites.
We’re often told to exercise “tolerance” toward others in society. But this seems to me to be a lower standard than “Love your neighbor.”