One Anothers

Most people, Christians and non-Christians, are familiar with all the “thou shalt not” verses spread throughout the Old Testament and mostly recognized as part of the Ten Commandments. Did you know that those verses have counterparts that appear over 50 times in the New Testament, unofficially labeled as the “one—another’s”? An example is Romans 12:10, “Be kindly affectioned one to another with brotherly love, preferring one another”. In contrast to the “thou shalt not’s”, the “one-another’s” are more entreating, directing us toward positive behavior rather than admonishing us against the negative. In Matthew 23 Jesus scolded the religious elite of his day who sought to obey the smallest letter of the law at the expense of it’s underlying principles, which are found in the “one-another’s”; we are to care for (I Cor.12:25); to serve (Gal. 5:13); to be kind and forgiving toward (Eph. 4:32); to comfort (I Thess 4:18); to edify (I Thess 5:11); to exhort (Heb. 10:25); and to pray for (James 5:16) one another. Truly, the question needs to be asked if you are a professing Christian, are these things part of your daily experience?     Sadly, the most neglected of the “one-another’s” is the one that appears the most often, over a dozen times. “A new commandment I give unto you, that ye love one another; as I have loved you, that ye also love one another”. (John 13:34) This isn’t speaking about loving your enemies; this is loving your fellow Christians who, like some people in your natural family, may be difficult to love. Add to this the diversity of denominations and their views of Scripture and before you know it, the thoughts run, “How can I love and accept someone so different and so deceived of the truth?”. How would you respond to 1 John 4:20, “If any man say, I love God, and hateth his brother, he is a liar; for he that loveth not his brother whom he hath seen, how can he love God whom he hath not seen?”. Jesus himself said,  “By this shall all men know that ye are my disciples, if ye have love one to another”. (John 13:35) What more could be added to words that are so direct and simple? The “one- another’s”, guiding wisdom that should never be forgotten.

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