Love in Action - Romans 12:9

1 Corinthians 13 gets a lot of play as it is considered by many to be THE love chapter in the Bible. But love is scattered throughout scripture, which makes sense since the greatest and second greatest commands both start with love. Romans 12 is one such sweet spot, dubbed by some translations as the “Love in Action” passage.

Over the next few weeks, we’ll look at this rich pocket of practical scripture, verse by verse, beginning with Romans 12:9.

How interesting that this verse begins with a statement about love but immediately follows it up with a command to hate (although hating evil seems perfectly congruent to loving sincerely). This could be interpreted in various ways (and as the Word of God is living and active, I’m inclined to believe that it is intentional).

First, if we say we love God, our actions should reflect our words. If we love God, we should hate (avoid, resist, flee from) evil and cling to (adhere to, stand up for, pursue) good.

We can also love others sincerely by consciously focusing on (clinging to) what is good in them instead of obsessing over their shortcomings or failings.

This concept perfectly aligns with the writings of 1 Peter 4:8. “Above all, keep loving one another earnestly, since love covers a multitude of sins.”

Christ modeled this sincere love by sacrificing his life on our behalf, ”while we were still sinners.” We cannot control the actions of those whom we love, but we DO have control over what thoughts we choose to treasure in our hearts and minds. 

We can choose to think about things that are true, noble, right, pure, lovely, admirable, excellent, and praiseworthy- both in general and in regard to what we think about others.

This is loving God and others sincerely. This is love in action.

Want to download a free wallpaper for your phone so you can be reminded to focus on Love in Action all week? Grab yours here!


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