I remember growing up, we lived in the city of Toronto ON, and we had neighbours. Lots of them, and all within a very close proximity. It was something that I was always used to and to this day, we still have neighbours. To some people, this may also be a normal thing but to others they may not have neighbours or they may be quite far from them. Today, we are going to focus on a verse in the Bible where Jesus mentions neighbours.
“The most important one,’ answered Jesus, ‘is this: “Hear, O Israel: the Lord our God, the Lord is one.
Love the Lord your God with all your heart and with all your soul and with all your mind and with all your strength.” The second is this: “Love your neighbour as yourself.” There is no commandment greater than these.” Mark 12:29-31
Who is my Neighbour?
Just before this, one of the scribes had asked Jesus which commandment of all of them was most important (Mark 12:28). The answer that Jesus gives allows us to have a great understanding of how we should treat others. One thing to also note is that when Jesus is talking about a neighbour, it does not mean it’s only a neighbour that lives next door to you. It also does not mean that if you don’t have any neighbours, you are excluded. A neighbour can be anyone that we come into contact with, someone across the globe, someone we have never met before. We have to love our neighbours as ourselves.
In the book of Luke, a lawyer tested Jesus and asked Him about inheriting eternal life and Jesus replied with the questions: “What is written in the law? What is your reading of it? The man replied with, “You shall love the Lord your God with all your heart, with all your strength, and with all your mind, and your neighbour as yourself.” Do these words sound familiar?
The man goes on to ask Jesus who his neighbour is (Luke 10:29) and Jesus replies with the Parable of the Good Samaritan. In this story, there is a man who gets very badly beaten up by some thieves and this unfortunately leaves him almost dead. A priest and a Levite both avoided the man and kept going their way, despite knowing that this man really needed some help. A Samaritan man who had compassion on the man not only helped the man, but also took care of him and provided a place for him to stay and be well taken care of. The next day, the Samaritan man goes back to the place where the man was staying to pay and offer to pay any additional costs that may be incurred.
What does this mean for Me?
Jesus is teaching us and reminding us that we need to treat others as we would want to be treated and to love others. You may not be able to help every person in the world, but if you can help those that Jesus places in your life, and use opportunities that He gives you, that makes all the difference. Jesus sees our hearts and our intentions and that is what is most important.
Our world so desperately needs Jesus today. If you go online or turn on the news, after a few minutes you will hear about so many tragedies that are happening as we speak. While we cannot help everyone, let us instead ask ourselves what we can do. It will make a difference.
At OMS Canada, every Tuesday morning and Thursday evening we pray together. Would you consider helping in this way? We would love to have you pray with us. Contact us for the zoom links and we would be happy to provide them to you.
OMS is also affiliated with the 4VEH radio station in Haiti where they have recently been affected again by an earthquake. This is a great opportunity to help in whatever way you can. Please pray for Haiti and for everyone that has been affected in one way or another. If you would like to give financially to help bring relief and Gospel hope to these people, you can do that here.
Be encouraged today because whatever you do to help is making a difference. Let us remember others as we go about our days and may God continue to bless and equip us and we use opportunities to love our neighbours as ourselves.