1. Great effort is being made to find a cure for coronavirus, a medical problem affecting many people [we certainly hope that a cure will soon be found]. 2. In our lesson we are concentrating on the cure for social problems that are affecting many more people [lack of respect for authority, brutality, stealing, destroying property, killing, etc.]. 3. This cure is revealed in Leviticus 19:18 -- "love your neighbor as yourself." 4. The giver of this cure is also revealed in the same passage -- "I am the Lord."
I. THE BIBLE EMPHASIZES THE IMPORTANCE OF GOD'S CURE
A. (Matthew 22:35-40) Jesus revealed the 2 great commandments in the law. 1. (vs.39) He identified the command we are studying as the 2nd commandment. 2. (vs.40) It was 1 of the 2 commandments upon which all the law and prophets hung. a. The 1st commandment summed up all the responsibilities that the Jews had toward God. b. The 2nd commandment summed up all the responsibilities that the Jews had toward their neighbors (Leviticus 19:13, 14, 15, 16, 17). B. The New Testament also reveals how important this commandment is to Christians (Romans 13:8-10; Galatians 5:13-15; James 2:8). C. Since this commandment is so important we must understand it.
II. THE BIBLE EXPLAINS GOD'S CURE
A. In explaining this cure, the Bible interprets God's commandment. 1. (Matthew 5:43-48) Jesus dealt with a misinterpretation of this commandment. a. A misinterpretation is revealed in vs.43. b. Jesus taught His will in vs.44-48. 2. Jesus gave a practical explanation of this commandment in Matthew 7:12. B. In explaining this cure, the Bible illustrates God's command (Luke 10:25-37). 1. (vs.25-29) We learn why Jesus told the parable of the Good Samaritan. 2. (vs.30) A man needed assistance -- he had been robbed, stripped of his clothing, wounded, and left half dead. 3. (vs.31-32) 2 men did not love their neighbor. a. (vs.31) When a priest saw the man, he "passed by on the other side." b. (vs.32) A Levite "came and looked on him, and passed by on the other side." 4. (vs.33-35) A Samaritan did love his neighbor. a. (vs.33) The Samaritan loved his neighbor because he had compassion on him. b. He demonstrated his love by: 1) caring for the man in need (vs.34) 2) sacrificing so the man would be taken care of (vs.35). 5. Jesus applied this parable to the lawyer in vs.36-37.
III. THE BIBLE REVEALS THE SIDE EFFECTS OF GOD'S CURE
A. We showed earlier from Romans 13:10 that "love worketh no ill to his neighbor." B. We also learn how love behaves, and does not behave, in 1 Corinthians 13:4-8.
1. People who reject God's cure cause others to be discouraged. 2. However, those who practice God's cure cause others to be encouraged. 3. Let us make a special effort to always love our neighbors as ourselves.