The new commandment of Jesus, love of one’s neighbour, is what the Word of Life suggests to us for the month of May 2022. It is a journey in which we can progress every day and where we find the fullness of Jesus’ message.
“The whole of the Law is summarized in a single command: Love your neighbour as yourself” (Gal. 5:14 JB) This sentence comes from St Paul the Apostle. It is brief, precise, explicit and truly wonderful.
It tells us that love of neighbour must be the basis and constant inspiration of the Christian way of life.
For the Apostle, the fulfilment of the Law lies in practicing this command. The Law, in fact, speaks of not committing adultery, not killing, not stealing, not coveting…. And we know that those who love do not do these things. Those who love do not kill or steal, etc.
Those who love, however, do not merely avoid evil. They are open to others; they desire good and accomplish it; they give of themselves, going so far as to give their very lives for their neighbour.
For this reason, Paul writes that, when we love our neighbour, we are not merely observing a single command because — “the whole of the Law” is summarized in it.
If the whole of the Law is summed up in love of neighbour, the other commandments should be seen as means to enlighten and guide us in finding the way to love others in the often complex situations of life. We become aware of God’s purpose in giving us the other commandments, of his will as expressed in. them. He wants us to be obedient, chaste, mortified in our passions, meek, merciful, poor and so on, in order to better fulfil the commandment of love.
(Chiara Lubich, in Parole di Vita, Città Nuova, 2017, pp. 263/4)