Thursday, May 14, 2015

The Kindest Thing You Can Ever Do

All scripture references, unless otherwise noted, are from the King James Version of the Holy Bible.
When the Lord Jesus responded to the question in Matthew 22:36-40 "Master, which is the great commandment in the law?  Jesus said unto him, Thou shalt love the Lord thy God with all thy heart, and with all thy soul, and with all thy mind. This is the first and great commandment. And the second is like unto it, Thou shalt love thy neighbour as thyself. On these two commandments hang all the law and the prophets." I have never had a problem with the first part of Jesus' answer. It's the second part that I have never fully understood. In many if not most instances I have heard, coupled with these passages, the following.

In Luke 10:25-37 the Bible says "And, behold, a certain lawyer stood up, and tempted him, saying, Master, what shall I do to inherit eternal life? He said unto him, What is written in the law? how readest thou? And he answering said, Thou shalt love the Lord thy God with all thy heart, and with all thy soul, and with all thy strength, and with all thy mind; and thy neighbour as thyself. And he said unto him, Thou hast answered right: this do, and thou shalt live. But he, willing to justify himself, said unto Jesus, And who is my neighbour?" It is in the next part of this passage that "...Jesus answering said, A certain man went down from Jerusalem to Jericho, and fell among thieves, which stripped him of his raiment, and wounded him, and departed, leaving him half dead. And by chance there came down a certain priest that way: and when he saw him, he passed by on the other side. And likewise a Levite, when he was at the place, came and looked on him, and passed by on the other side. But a certain Samaritan, as he journeyed, came where he was: and when he saw him, he had compassion on him, And went to him, and bound up his wounds, pouring in oil and wine, and set him on his own beast, and brought him to an inn, and took care of him. And on the morrow when he departed, he took out two pence, and gave them to the host, and said unto him, Take care of him; and whatsoever thou spendest more, when I come again, I will repay thee. Which now of these three, thinkest thou, was neighbour unto him that fell among the thieves? And he said, He that shewed mercy on him. Then said Jesus unto him, Go, and do thou likewise."

The lawyer apparently was insincere in his question for the Bible says that he asked the question to tempt the Lord Jesus. That is probably why he asked the question, "And who is my neighbour?" Since moving to Sedona Arizona I have come to appreciate the Lord's reply in Matthew 22:39. Lately I have told the Lord how much I love Him. I have said in prayer, "Lord Jesus, thank you for saving my soul. I love you with all my heart, with all my soul, with all my mind and with all my strength." I have prayed with all the sincerity of my soul. But as I prayed thus, it occurred to me that Jesus' reply included the second commandment which was like unto the first, "Thou shalt love thy neighbour as thyself." I began to think of my neighbors in Sedona and to question how much I really loved them. Then my mind captured everyone I have ever known. And I began to add them to my neighbors in my prayers.

It occurs to me that the kindest thing I could ever do for my neighbors was to see them saved. If I indeed love my neighbors as I love myself I will want them to be saved as I have been. The greatest thing that has ever happened in my life was when the Lord Jesus said in tones of the most unutterable love, "make Me your choice, I am the only reasonable choice you have." My friend, the Bible says in John 3:16, "For God so loved the world, that he gave his only begotten Son, that whosoever believeth in him should not perish, but have everlasting life." God's love for you and I defies our ability to express it.  He loves us with a love that brought Him from heaven to earth to suffer and die for our sins and not for ours alone but for that of the whole world. The Bible says that when He was, " the form of God, thought it not robbery to be equal with God: But made himself of no reputation, and took upon him the form of a servant, and was made in the likeness of men: And being found in fashion as a man, he humbled himself, and became obedient unto death, even the death of the cross." (See Philippians 2:6-8) Someone wrote the words to a song, it goes something like this;     
     Oh how He loves you and me. 
     Oh how He loves you and me.
     He gave His life what more could He give?
     Oh how He loves you, oh how He loves me,
     Oh how He loves you and me.

If you will ask the Lord Jesus for forgiveness with a sincere heart, He will forgive you all your transgressions and sins, no matter how heinous they may have been. Obey the gospel! What Apostle Peter said on the Day of Pentecost was God's invitation to all, "Repent, and be baptized every one of you in the name of Jesus Christ for the remission of sins, and ye shall receive the gift of the Holy Ghost. For the promise is unto you, and to your children, and to all that are afar off, even as many as the Lord our God shall call." (See Acts 2:38-39

For those who will, help my wife and I pray for Sedona, Arizona. It is full of sinners who God loves with inexpressible love. They are all our neighbors.

No comments:

Post a Comment