You shall not take vengeance, nor bear any grudge against the children of your people, but you shall love your neighbor as yourself: I am the Lord. Leviticus 19:18
Love didn’t begin in the New Testament. The ethical teachings about loving one’s neighbor began in Leviticus—the heart of the Mosaic Law. So central was the command to love one’s neighbor as oneself that it is quoted seven times in the New Testament: four times in Matthew, Mark, and Luke, by Jesus; twice by Paul (Romans 13:9; Galatians 5:14); and once by James (James 2:8). Jewish religious teachers thought the command to love one’s neighbor implied hating one’s enemy. But Jesus corrected that misinterpretation of Leviticus, saying we are to love both neighbors and enemies (Matthew 5:43-44).
Hopefully, you don’t have enemies. But everyone has neighbors in one form or another. And we are to love both—enemies and neighbors—as we love…
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