Today’s “one another” comes from Romans 12:10, it starts out by saying, “be devoted to one another in brotherly love”. I had a hard time putting into words exactly what it would mean to be devoted to someone so I checked out the Greek word using my Strong’s Exhaustive Concordance. It turns out this is the only place in the Bible this particular word is used, not that it matters, but I always find that interesting. The original Greek word Paul used here means “tenderly loving”.
I also looked at the Greek words for “brotherly love”, it turns out there isn’t two different words, the phrase has been translated from a single Greek word “philadelphia” which speaks of a family sort of relationship and literally means, “coming from the same womb”. We are to feel such closeness to our fellow believers that we see them as having come from the same womb we did – and this is true since we’re all born of the same Spirit.
When I think of brotherly love in the Bible, I usually think of the Old Testament example of Jonathan and David. But today I was also reminded of how the believers in Ephesus treated Paul as he was departing. In Acts 20:36-38 we read, “When he (Paul) had said these things, he knelt down and prayed with them all. And they began to weep aloud and embraced Paul, and repeatedly kissed him, grieving especially over the word which he had spoken, that they would not see his face again. And they were accompanying him to the ship.”
Sometimes showing brotherly love can be difficult, especially if you’ve come from a dysfunctional family or even just a family where affections were more presumed than demonstrated. Personally, I think it has taken me a lot of years to be as good at this as I am, and I know I have a long way to go. But the good news is that I am moving in the right direction, and hopefully, you are as well!
I John 4:20-21 “If someone says, “I love God,” and hates his brother, he is a liar; for the one who does not love his brother whom he has seen, cannot love God whom he has not seen. And this commandment we have from Him, that the one who loves God should love his brother also.”
How have you shown devotion to another Christian? How was that received? Does fear of rejection keep us from adequately showing devotion to one another?