Prefer one another

Image by Sasin Tipchai from Pixabay
Image by Sasin Tipchai from Pixabay

Be kindly affectioned one to another with brotherly love; in honour preferring one another. Romans 12:10

Or, as the ESV translates it: Love one another with brotherly affection. Outdo one another in showing honor. One of the ways the love commanded in verse 9 is manifested is in a family spirit among believers. Out of this love for one another as family members springs all the care that believers ought to have for one another. Believers should not be strangers but in each other’s lives!

Another way this is manifested is in showing honor to each other. And if there is any competition, it is a competition in putting others before one’s self. This is not a community of people who spend their time moping and complaining that they weren’t treated like they would wish. They aren’t focused on themselves at all; they are focused on blessing others. Paul’s exhortation echoes others he gives in various letters. For example, in Phil. 2:3-4, he writes: “Let nothing be done through strife or vainglory; but in lowliness of mind let each esteem other better than themselves. Look not every man on his own things, but every man also on the things of others” (note the example of Christ which follows). Or consider what he says in 1 Cor. 13:5 – Love “does not insist on its own way; it is not irritable or resentful” (ESV). Again, if we really consider ourselves the recipients of the mercies of God, we have everything we need – and so we are freed by grace to spend the rest of our time blessing others and showing mercy to them.

By: Jeremiah Bass