Love Your Neighbor - The Book of Matthew
Jesus replied: “‘Love the Lord your God with all your heart and with all your soul and with all your mind.This is the first and greatest commandment. And the second is like it: ‘Love your neighbor as yourself.
Love your neighbor as Jesus Loved
For I was hungry and you gave me something to eat, I was thirsty and you gave me something to drink, I was a stranger and you invited me in, I needed clothes and you clothed me, I was sick and you looked after me, I was in prison and you came to visit me.’
Serving Like Jesus
Blessed are the merciful, for they will be shown mercy. Matthew 5:7
Take my yoke upon you and learn from me, for I am gentle and humble in heart, and you will find rest for your souls. For my yoke is easy and my burden is light. Matthew 11:29-30
For if you forgive others their trespasses, your heavenly Father will also forgive you, Matthew 6:14 ESV
Luke 10:29b-37 (NIV) (The Good Samaritan)
"...'And who is my neighbor.?' Jesus replied, "A man was going down from Jerusalem to Jericho, when he was attacked by robbers. They stripped him of his clothes, beat him and went away, leaving him half dead. A priest happened to be going down the same road, and when he saw the man, he passed by on the other side. So too, a Levite, when he came to the place and saw him, passed by on the other side. But a Samaritan, as he traveled, came where the man was; and when he saw him, he took pity on him. He went to him and bandaged his wounds, pouring on oil and wine. Then he put the man on his own donkey, brought him to an inn and took care of him. The next day he took out two denarii and gave them to the innkeeper. ‘Look after him,’ he said, ‘and when I return, I will reimburse you for any extra expense you may have.’ “Which of these three do you think was a neighbor to the man who fell into the hands of robbers?” The expert in the law replied, “The one who had mercy on him.” Jesus told him, 'Go and do likewise.'"
Luke 18:35-43 (NIV)- The Blind Beggar
"As Jesus approached Jericho, a blind man was sitting by the roadside begging. When he heard the crowd going by, he asked what was happening. They told him, “Jesus of Nazareth is passing by.” He called out, “Jesus, Son of David, have mercy on me! Those who led the way rebuked him and told him to be quiet, but he shouted all the more, “Son of David, have mercy on me!” Jesus stopped and ordered the man to be brought to him. When he came near, Jesus asked him, “What do you want me to do for you?” “Lord, I want to see,” he replied. Jesus said to him, “Receive your sight; your faith has healed you.” Immediately he received his sight and followed Jesus, praising God. When all the people saw it, they also praised God."
Ways to show Mercy:
- Care for their immediate needs
- Make sure that they are well off after we leave
- Do not look down on people in need
Micah 6:8 (NIV)
"To act justly and to love mercy and to walk humbly with your God."
Obadiah 1:3-4 (NIV)
"The pride of your heart has deceived you, you who live in the clefts of the rocks and make your home on the heights, you who say to yourself, 'Who can bring me down to the ground?' Though you soar like the eagle and make your nest among the stars, from there I will bring you down," declares the LORD."
Amos 5:11-12 (ESV)
Therefore because you trample on the poor and you exact taxes of grain from him, you have built houses of hewn stone, but you shall not dwell in them; you have planted pleasant vineyards, but you shall not drink their wine. For I know how many are your transgressions and how great are your sins- you who afflict the righteous, who take a bribe, and turn aside the needy in the gate.
"To live with Jesus is to live with the poor. To live with the poor is to live with Jesus." -Jean Vanier
Amos 8:4-8a (ESV)
Hear this, you who trample on the needy and bring the poor of the land to an end, saying, "When will the new moon be over, that we may sell grain? And the Sabbath, that we may offer wheat for sale, that we may make the ephah small and the shekel great and deal deceitfully with false balances, that we may buy the poor for silver and the needy for a pair of sandals and sell the chaff of the wheat?" The Lord has sworn by the pride of Jacob: Surely, I will never forget any of their deeds. Shall not the land tremble on this account, and everyone mourn who dwells in it.
"The Bible insists that the best test of a nation's righteousness is how it treats the poorest and most vulnerable in its midst." -Jim Wallis
- "Then the woman of Samaria said to Him; "How is it that You, being a Jew, ask a drink from me, a Samaritan woman?" For Jews have no dealings with Samaritans." John 4:9
- "And at this point His disciples came, and they marveled that He talked with a woman..." John 4:27
- "I am the vine, you are the branches. He who abides in Me, and I in him, bears much fruit; for without me you can do nothing." John 15:5
How does this relate to social work and loving your neighbor?
- A social worker builds bridges to help people in poverty be where they want to be in life.
- Building bridges is loving your neighbor.