Saturday, August 24, 2013

Greet One Another With a Holy Kiss

I’m glad to be attending a church filled with huggers. I really look forward to my Sunday bear hugs! Paul says in Romans 16:16, to “greet one another with a holy kiss”. A lot of folks get hung up here on the word “kiss” and, for the most part, I’m right there with them. But in doing so, we overlook the word “holy”.

It doesn’t really matter if we greet one another verbally or with a handshake, a hug, or a kiss. These are just customs that differ depending on when and where you’ve lived. I think Paul’s emphasis here is, first of all, that we greet one another – don’t pass by without acknowledging each other.

Secondly, make your greeting “holy”. At first glance, this seems a little odd and even difficult to do. I think a holy greeting is one that isn’t a mere superficial formality, but one that shows honest concern and comes from a sincere heart. Another way to look at this is to greet one another with God’s unconditional “agape” love.

The world around us has its various customs that come and go, but Paul admonishes us to be different, to not be as the world, but to always greet one another with holiness.

Romans 12:9a Let love be without hypocrisy.”

Discussion Questions:

How do you prefer to be greeted when attending church? Is this any different than the greeting you expect other places? How important is this “one another” to you?


  1. well coming from a person that has issues with being touched by strangers, it's very hard for me to let anyone I don't know (and a few of the ones I do know) hug me ... so I have to keep chanting in my head that I can get through this for jesus as he has done so much for me . on the other hand I find a hug from a friend to be very uplifting . there is something wonderful about starting your sunday morning with a few hugs from ppl you know are all thinking on the same lines as yourself and hugging/ hand shaking/ kissing all out of a good place in their hearts. I am getting better at this but do have a long ways to go .

    1. Hello there, thank you so much for sharing your thoughts on this “touchy” subject. I can see how difficult it would be to get such a familiar-type greeting from complete strangers.

      I remember my fist Sunday at this church and being overwhelmed by it all – but for me, it was just what I needed. I had been through a couple rough years after my husband’s death and having all those people reach out to me was a huge blessing.

      I really like what you said about these people are “all thinking on the same lines as yourself”. This too is a real blessing, being surrounded with like-minded individuals. But even I have some issues with overly-zealous huggers – because of two car accidents, there are days when I just can’t stand to have my back touched. I try to be a “good” hugger, always being gentle on people!

      I’ve went to a church for about a year that barely even gave out verbal greetings, it was pretty sad. So even though my back may end up hurting a little more, I’ll take a room full of zealous huggers any day over the silent treatment! Like you said, it all comes “out of a good place in their hearts”.

      Thanks again for stopping by, and here’s a (((hug))) for you!
      Blessings to you this week.