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FROM THE SERVANT GENERAL
 

FROM THE SERVANT GENERAL

LOVING ONE ANOTHER
(Part 2)

LOVE FULFILLS THE LAW


November 4, 2009

We are called to love one another. This is the bottom line in human relationships. Paul in today’s reading continues to teach us about love. “Owe nothing to anyone, except to love one another; for the one who loves another has fulfilled the law.” (Rom 13:8).

The law refers to the commandments of God. And Paul says that “the commandments .... are summed up in this saying, namely ‘You shall love your neighbor as yourself.’” (Rom 13:9). Love fulfills the law, that is, when love directs one’s moral decisions, then the intent of the law, which is the good of people, is fulfilled.

The law is concerned about right marriage and family relationships, about respect for the sanctity of life, about security of property (Note: First World nations are now assaulting such rights and using law to enforce their distorted positions). If one truly loves, then one desires the best for the other. If one truly loves, then the purpose of the law is fulfilled. “Love does no evil to the neighbor; hence, love is the fulfillment of the law.” (Rom 13:10).

Jesus’ commandment is that we love our neighbor as we love ourselves. So a good way of examining if we are loving is to look at how we ourselves would like to experience love from others. Think about what hurts us; then resolve not to do such. Consider what we would not like to happen to us; then do not do such to others.

Do you want to be the object of destructive gossip? Do you want to be maligned? Do you want lies to be told about you? Do you want to be deprived of what is rightfully yours? The obvious answer is NO. Then do not do the same to others. In sum, do no evil to your neighbor. In a word, love.

Another word for loving our neighbor is justice, which interestingly is associated with “law.” Justice is giving to the other person what is his due, or not depriving one of what rightfully belongs to him.

If we love others, if we practice justice, if we do unto others what we want done to us, then we will be blessed. Today’s reading of Psalm 112 tells us about the blessings of the just. “All goes well for those .... who conduct their affairs with justice.” (Ps 112:5).

These blessings include family and children (Ps 112:2), prosperity (Ps 112:3), security (Ps 112:6), not being afraid (Ps 112:7-8), honor (Ps 112:9), and virtues (Ps 112:4).

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