I John 3:14: "We know that we have passed from death unto life, because we love the brethren. He that loveth not his brother abideth in death.”
Here is the positive calling of the sixth commandment. Scripture calls us to love our neighbour. But first we need to see our calling to love our brothers and sisters in Christ. That love is not a mere sentiment. Love is a bond of perfectness between persons (Col 3:14). Love is the bond that unites persons, so that with all their being they seek to do good to one another, in all patience, peacefulness, meekness, mercy, and kindness. That love does not exist in darkness, for love is of God. John writes, "Hereby perceive we the love of God, because He laid down His life for us: and we ought to lay down our lives for the brethren" (I John 3:16).
Will you see the positive commandment in the words "Thou shalt not kill"? This is it: We must so love the brethren that we are willing to lay down our lives for them. We must seek one another's spiritual and material welfare at the expense of our own. Because such is the love by which we have been redeemed. "for he that loveth not his brother whom he hath seen, how can he love God whom he hath not seen?" (I John 4:20b).
Love your neighbour as yourself. Your neighbour is the person whom God places on the pathway of your life. To love him is our calling for Christ's sake. Jesus said, "Think not that I am come to destroy the law, or the prophets...one jot or one tittle shall in now wise pass from the law, till all be fulfilled" (Matt 5:17-18). Christ loved us. He loved not everybody; but He loved His elect perfectly, while we were yet enemies. On the cross He laid down his life for us who were murderers at heart. Every drop of blood that trickled from His hands and feet was out of His love for us. That is why we must hear the prohibition of the sixth commandment, "Thou shaltnot kill." That is why we must also hear the positive demand, "Love your neighbour as yourself." Look at the cross. Hear the gospel. Do you see your calling?
Steven R. Key (Wife: Nancy)
Ordained: September 1986
Pastorates: Southeast, Grand Rapids, MI - 1986; Randolph, WI - 1991; Hull, IA - 2000; Loveland, CO - March 2010Website: https://sites.google.com/site/lovelandprctest1/home
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