Together in Christ: 'Only One Debt' — Romans 13:8

Sunday, July 7, 2024

Owe nothing to anyone — except for your obligation to love one another. If you love your neighbor, you will fulfill the requirements of God’s law.
— Romans 13:8 NLT

Key Thought

The apostle Paul was emphatic: we should not go into debt to anyone. Paul emphasized that we should have only one ongoing debt: we must love one another and our neighbors. [1] We love because God loved us first and demonstrated that love through Jesus. [2] Since God loved us, we should love one another. [3] Loving our neighbor fulfills the legal requirements of God's laws in the Torah because it is the underlying principle of the Law. However, our ultimate "obligation" is to Jesus. While He gave us the gift of grace, love, mercy, and salvation freely, the Lord is emphatic: God's love should lead us to share our love with others. [4] We can't claim to love God, Whom we haven't seen, and not love each other and neighbors whom we have seen. [5] It's that simple. Our only debt is to love others as we have been loved!

[1] Matthew 22:36-40.
[2] 1 John 4:7, 10.
[3] 1 John 4:11-12.
[4] John 13:34-35.
[5] 1 John 4:20.

Today's Prayer

Father, I confess that while some people are easy to love, others are challenging. Thank You for pouring Your love in me through the Holy Spirit to empower me to love people I would not, and could not, normally love. Lead me to people who need Your love, and show me how to share that love in ways that reach their hearts! In Jesus' name, I pray. Amen.

Related Scripture Readings

  • 1 John 3:16-18, 4:7-12
  • Romans 5:6-11

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Illustration

Illustration of Romans 13:8 NLT — Owe nothing to anyone — except for your obligation to love one another. If you love your neighbor, you will fulfill the requirements of God’s law.

About This Devotional

Together in Christ is a daily devotional that focuses on what Scripture teaches about godly living in relationships.

'Together in Christ' is written by Phil Ware.

Scripture quotations are taken from the Holy Bible, New Living Translation, copyright ©1996, 2004, 2007, 2013, 2015 by Tyndale House Foundation. Used by permission of Tyndale House Publishers, Inc., Carol Stream, Illinois 60188. All rights reserved.