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Love Thy Neighbor

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posted on May, 14 2015 @ 07:18 PM
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Almost everyone thinks of Jesus Christ, when they hear it. The now cliche phrase, "Love thy neighbor" has been attributed to be one of the most important statement that Jesus made. Most recall the biblical narrative in which Jesus is confronted by the Jewish elders, and in an attempt to trap him, he's ask "What is the greatest of the commandments?"


Jesus said unto him, Thou shalt love the Lord thy God with all thy heart, and with all thy soul, and with all thy mind. This is the first and great commandment. And the second is like unto it, Thou shalt love thy neighbour as thyself. On these two commandments hang all the law and the prophets.


Most Christian scholars will tell us that this is a brilliantly nuanced summation of "The Law" of Moses, that was referring mostly to the Ten Commandments, because of this scripture from Paul.



Romans 13:9
For this, Thou shalt not commit adultery , Thou shalt not kill , Thou shalt not steal , Thou shalt not bear false witness , Thou shalt not covet ; and if there be any other commandment, it is briefly comprehended in this saying, namely, Thou shalt love thy neighbour as thyself.


But, I disagree with the Christian scholars and believe that these two commandments are actually much older and aren't a summation of the Ten Commandments at all.
Case in point:


The Talmud tells a story of Rabbi Hillel, who lived around the time of Jesus. A pagan came to him saying that he would convert to Judaism if Hillel could teach him the whole of the Torah in the time he could stand on one foot. Rabbi Hillel replied, "What is hateful to yourself, do not do to your fellow man. That is the whole Torah; the rest is just commentary. Go and study it." (Talmud Shabbat 31a).
en.wikipedia.org...


Sounds a lot like Jesus' Golden Rule, doesn't it? So, where did these spiritual sages find their wisdom? Leviticus 19, that's where! Leviticus 19 is a hodge podge of laws that range from not eating 3 day old meat, probably a good idea, to the way men should trim their beards. But in there, you'll find this gem.


17 Thou shalt not hate thy brother in thine heart: thou shalt in any wise rebuke thy neighbour, and not suffer sin upon him.

18 Thou shalt not avenge, nor bear any grudge against the children of thy people, but thou shalt love thy neighbour as thyself: I am the Lord.


But is love enough? The chapter goes on to ensure hospitality and the survival and protection of the poor and of the strangers and sojourners among the land of the people of Israel.


33 And if a stranger sojourn with thee in your land, ye shall not vex him.

34 But the stranger that dwelleth with you shall be unto you as one born among you, and thou shalt love him as thyself; for ye were strangers in the land of Egypt: I am the Lord your God.



9 And when ye reap the harvest of your land, thou shalt not wholly reap the corners of thy field, neither shalt thou gather the gleanings of thy harvest.

10 And thou shalt not glean thy vineyard, neither shalt thou gather every grape of thy vineyard; thou shalt leave them for the poor and stranger: I am the Lord your God.


That's nice! Boaz met Ruth, who was an impoverished women gleaning from his field, and Jesus and the disciples gleaning the grain fields on the Sabbath, because they were hungry, all per Leviticus 19. This kind of practice would be considered theft in most societies today, even in the most religious ones.

Another thing that Jesus said that gets misinterpreted, in my opinion, is when he says:


Be ye therefore perfect, even as your Father which is in heaven is perfect.


Where does this come from? How could Jesus have commanded something so impossible, especially considering the Christian doctrine of "Original Sin"?

It's the very first verse in Leviticus 19!


And the Lord spake unto Moses, saying,

2 Speak unto all the congregation of the children of Israel, and say unto them, Ye shall be holy: for I the Lord your God am holy


So, there you have it! Many, if not most, of Jesus' most important teachings can be found right here in the Book of Leviticus, Chapter 19 and really weren't all that revolutionary.

So, in closing



Be excellent to each other, and party on! (That's in the Bible too, see my signature!)




posted on May, 14 2015 @ 07:29 PM
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originally posted by: windword
Almost everyone thinks of Jesus Christ, when they hear it. The now cliche phrase, "Love thy neighbor" has been attributed to be one of the most important statement that Jesus made. Most recall the biblical narrative in which Jesus is confronted by the Jewish elders, and in an attempt to trap him, he's ask "What is the greatest of the commandments?"


Jesus said unto him, Thou shalt love the Lord thy God with all thy heart, and with all thy soul, and with all thy mind. This is the first and great commandment. And the second is like unto it, Thou shalt love thy neighbour as thyself. On these two commandments hang all the law and the prophets.


Most Christian scholars will tell us that this is a brilliantly nuanced summation of "The Law" of Moses, that was referring mostly to the Ten Commandments, because of this scripture from Paul.



Romans 13:9
For this, Thou shalt not commit adultery , Thou shalt not kill , Thou shalt not steal , Thou shalt not bear false witness , Thou shalt not covet ; and if there be any other commandment, it is briefly comprehended in this saying, namely, Thou shalt love thy neighbour as thyself.


But, I disagree with the Christian scholars and believe that these two commandments are actually much older and aren't a summation of the Ten Commandments at all.
Case in point:


The Talmud tells a story of Rabbi Hillel, who lived around the time of Jesus. A pagan came to him saying that he would convert to Judaism if Hillel could teach him the whole of the Torah in the time he could stand on one foot. Rabbi Hillel replied, "What is hateful to yourself, do not do to your fellow man. That is the whole Torah; the rest is just commentary. Go and study it." (Talmud Shabbat 31a).
en.wikipedia.org...


Sounds a lot like Jesus' Golden Rule, doesn't it? So, where did these spiritual sages find their wisdom? Leviticus 19, that's where! Leviticus 19 is a hodge podge of laws that range from not eating 3 day old meat, probably a good idea, to the way men should trim their beards. But in there, you'll find this gem.


17 Thou shalt not hate thy brother in thine heart: thou shalt in any wise rebuke thy neighbour, and not suffer sin upon him.

18 Thou shalt not avenge, nor bear any grudge against the children of thy people, but thou shalt love thy neighbour as thyself: I am the Lord.


But is love enough? The chapter goes on to ensure hospitality and the survival and protection of the poor and of the strangers and sojourners among the land of the people of Israel.


33 And if a stranger sojourn with thee in your land, ye shall not vex him.

34 But the stranger that dwelleth with you shall be unto you as one born among you, and thou shalt love him as thyself; for ye were strangers in the land of Egypt: I am the Lord your God.



9 And when ye reap the harvest of your land, thou shalt not wholly reap the corners of thy field, neither shalt thou gather the gleanings of thy harvest.

10 And thou shalt not glean thy vineyard, neither shalt thou gather every grape of thy vineyard; thou shalt leave them for the poor and stranger: I am the Lord your God.


That's nice! Boaz met Ruth, who was an impoverished women gleaning from his field, and Jesus and the disciples gleaning the grain fields on the Sabbath, because they were hungry, all per Leviticus 19. This kind of practice would be considered theft in most societies today, even in the most religious ones.

Another thing that Jesus said that gets misinterpreted, in my opinion, is when he says:


Be ye therefore perfect, even as your Father which is in heaven is perfect.


Where does this come from? How could Jesus have commanded something so impossible, especially considering the Christian doctrine of "Original Sin"?

It's the very first verse in Leviticus 19!


And the Lord spake unto Moses, saying,

2 Speak unto all the congregation of the children of Israel, and say unto them, Ye shall be holy: for I the Lord your God am holy


So, there you have it! Many, if not most, of Jesus' most important teachings can be found right here in the Book of Leviticus, Chapter 19 and really weren't all that revolutionary.

So, in closing



Be excellent to each other, and party on! (That's in the Bible too, see my signature!)




Nice summation.
Yes, very good things to know and live by.

ETA: I gave you a flag and I don't usually give flags.




edit on 5/14/2015 by WarminIndy because: (no reason given)



posted on May, 14 2015 @ 07:58 PM
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a reply to: WarminIndy

Thanks Indy!

Another thing that stands out to me from Leviticus 19, is this line.


And if ye offer a sacrifice of peace offerings unto the Lord, ye shall offer it at your own will.


I'm pretty sure the priests were discouraging the "at will" practice and were requiring offerings from the people for certain holy days and feasts, that the priests themselves kept and ate, at the time of Jesus.



posted on May, 14 2015 @ 07:59 PM
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C.S. Lewis makes a good point when he points out that you really need to consider both halves of the equation. Love thy neighbor as thyself.

How do you love thyself? Do you love thyself? And if you do love yourself, does that mean you like everything about yourself or approve of every single thing you do? Do you never seek to correct your own behavior or habits if you find yourself going astray? Examine that and then consider what it means to love thy neighbor.



posted on May, 14 2015 @ 08:11 PM
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a reply to: ketsuko

Noticing other people's mistakes and problems is probably the easiest thing to do. Forgiving oneself and loving one's self is probably the hardest thing to do. I think that's why we put so many limitation on the phrase, because of our own shortcomings.

Never the less, even if "your neighbor" needs to be chastised, they still deserve to eat and be dealt with compassionately.



posted on May, 14 2015 @ 08:15 PM
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originally posted by: windword
a reply to: WarminIndy

Thanks Indy!

Another thing that stands out to me from Leviticus 19, is this line.


And if ye offer a sacrifice of peace offerings unto the Lord, ye shall offer it at your own will.


I'm pretty sure the priests were discouraging the "at will" practice and were requiring offerings from the people for certain holy days and feasts, that the priests themselves kept and ate, at the time of Jesus.



I would say that very thing happened.

Ruth and Boaz is one of my favorite things. Another thing I love is Hosea and Gomer. Talk about love.

Hosea was commanded by the Lord to marry her even though she was a prostitute. Not only that, but to love her. One day while she was out being a prostitute, she was taken captive and then sold as a slave. Hosea went and bought her back because they would not let him have her, even though she was his wife.

He could have just let her go on and divorced her, but he loved her too much. He took her home and still loved her, regardless of what they said about her. That was a shame in those days and he had every right then to divorce her, but he chose to keep her and forgive her.



posted on May, 14 2015 @ 08:15 PM
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a reply to: windword



Originally posted by windword
Sounds a lot like Jesus' Golden Rule, doesn't it? So, where did these spiritual sages find their wisdom? Leviticus 19, that's where! Leviticus 19 is a hodge podge of laws that range from not eating 3 day old meat, probably a good idea, to the way men should trim their beards. But in there, you'll find this gem.

17 Thou shalt not hate thy brother in thine heart: thou shalt in any wise rebuke thy neighbour, and not suffer sin upon him.

18 Thou shalt not avenge, nor bear any grudge against the children of thy people, but thou shalt love thy neighbour as thyself: I am the Lord.


But is love enough? The chapter goes on to ensure hospitality and the survival and protection of the poor and of the strangers and sojourners among the land of the people of Israel.


Yeah, and it also goes on to talk about “keeping girls as slaves” (Verse 20) completely bypassing, the love your neighbour part…


Talk about a wacky dichotomy…Yeah, “love your neighbour as yourself”, but hey, it’s Ok to keep slaves girls too…


Anyway, nice thread…. EXCELLENNNT! S+F


Sooooooo-Crates lol would be proud…


- JC



posted on May, 14 2015 @ 08:45 PM
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originally posted by: Joecroft
a reply to: windword



Originally posted by windword
Sounds a lot like Jesus' Golden Rule, doesn't it? So, where did these spiritual sages find their wisdom? Leviticus 19, that's where! Leviticus 19 is a hodge podge of laws that range from not eating 3 day old meat, probably a good idea, to the way men should trim their beards. But in there, you'll find this gem.

17 Thou shalt not hate thy brother in thine heart: thou shalt in any wise rebuke thy neighbour, and not suffer sin upon him.

18 Thou shalt not avenge, nor bear any grudge against the children of thy people, but thou shalt love thy neighbour as thyself: I am the Lord.


But is love enough? The chapter goes on to ensure hospitality and the survival and protection of the poor and of the strangers and sojourners among the land of the people of Israel.


Yeah, and it also goes on to talk about “keeping girls as slaves” (Verse 20) completely bypassing, the love your neighbour part…


Talk about a wacky dichotomy…Yeah, “love your neighbour as yourself”, but hey, it’s Ok to keep slaves girls too…


Anyway, nice thread…. EXCELLENNNT! S+F


Sooooooo-Crates lol would be proud…


- JC




To be fair, slavery was common in those days. But the Bible does not allow for mistreatment or cruelty to slaves and a man could not just have sex with a slave girl, he had to manumit her first.

Just because you see the word slave, please do not think that it was so uncommon that they then didn't also do that. There were strict rules that differed from other cultures, though. I think you should read those.

Slavery and the Bible

Ancient Israelite society allowed slavery; however, total domination of one human being by another (as the Israelites suffered under Egyptian rule) was not permitted



The Torah forbids the return of runaway slaves who escape from their foreign land and their bondage and arrive in the Land of Israel. Furthermore, the Torah demands that such former slaves be treated equally to any other resident alien. This law is unique in the Ancient Near East.



Women captured by Israelite armies could be adopted forcibly as wives, but first they had to have their heads shaved and undergo a period of mourning. (Deuteronomy 21:10-14) However, "If you are not pleased with her, then you must let her go where she pleases. You cannot in any case sell her; you must not take advantage of her, since you have already humiliated her."


You couldn't just mistreat women slaves and many of them were sold by their fathers who could not pay their debts, and usually the purchase was for betrothal of sons. However, he could not mistreat her, he was actually obligated to take care of her as any other wife.


And if a man sells his daughter to be a female slave, she shall not go out as the male slaves do. If she does not please her master, who has betrothed her to himself, then he shall let her be redeemed. He shall have no right to sell her to a foreign people, since he has dealt deceitfully with her. And if he has betrothed her to his son, he shall deal with her according to the custom of daughters. If he takes another wife, he shall not diminish her food, her clothing, and her marriage rights. And if he does not do these three for her, then she shall go out free, without paying money. —Exodus 21


Yes, slavery happened, but in no way was a slave to be mistreated cruelly and even a woman slave could not be raped.

If he does marry her, then he has to redeem her first. And he cannot sell her again. The point is, even though slavery was a part of the ancient world, the Bible acknowledges this, the Torah gives rules about how they were to be treated. And this was similar to the Code of Hammurabi.

It is what it is, but slavery changed over time and even by the time of Jesus, even though there were still slaves, they still could not be mistreated. But think of what it was like to be a Roman slave, I think it was really much easier to be a slave in Israel, at least you had rights in Israel. In Rome, they could kill you.



posted on May, 14 2015 @ 08:48 PM
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a reply to: windword

LEV 19:18 "Thou shalt not avenge, nor bear any grudge against the children of thy people, but thou shalt love thy neighbour as thyself: I am the Lord."

Who is my neighbor? To the chosen people, they
might view only their fellow Jews as neighbor.

Consider how Jesus spoke to the Samaritan woman
and you get an idea of what I'm talking about.

If I was Jewish, would it be okay to lie, murder, and
steal from Genitals (because they are not my neighbor)?

You answer, of course not, and yet some think this way.



posted on May, 14 2015 @ 09:14 PM
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originally posted by: wasaka
a reply to: windword

LEV 19:18 "Thou shalt not avenge, nor bear any grudge against the children of thy people, but thou shalt love thy neighbour as thyself: I am the Lord."

Who is my neighbor? To the chosen people, they
might view only their fellow Jews as neighbor.

Consider how Jesus spoke to the Samaritan woman
and you get an idea of what I'm talking about.

If I was Jewish, would it be okay to lie, murder, and
steal from Genitals (because they are not my neighbor)?

You answer, of course not, and yet some think this way.






I think you should pay a little more attention to your posts...a typo there.

Maybe you have edited (I hope). I'm Dyslexic and I caught that one.



posted on May, 14 2015 @ 09:18 PM
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a reply to: windword

i think for some posters on here, their minds are one tracked. I need to screen shot that one, love thy neighbor..indeed. Steal from....

Sorry, somehow that's a whole different message. LOL. Please inform poster of said typo.



posted on May, 14 2015 @ 09:48 PM
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a reply to: wasaka




If I was Jewish, would it be okay to lie, murder, and
steal from Genitals (because they are not my neighbor)?


No, of course not. Those things are all covered, and them some, in that chapter. The Chapter also says that the strangers and the sojourners are also your neighbors.

I don't condone most of this stuff, especially slavery and such, but my point, is the point of thread is, that this chapter of Leviticus is where Jesus' commandments come from. He did cherry pick, no doubt, but he didn't come up with his "Two Great Commandments", or most of his teachings just off the top of his head. They're already there in the Old Testament.

ETA: Haha, I got the joke (Geniti....what?)
edit on 14-5-2015 by windword because: (no reason given)



posted on May, 15 2015 @ 02:25 AM
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a reply to: wasaka


If I was Jewish, would it be okay to lie, murder, and
steal from Genitals



I think they do that already at the age of 13...

snip!




posted on May, 15 2015 @ 08:24 AM
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originally posted by: windword
Another thing that Jesus said that gets misinterpreted, in my opinion, is when he says:

"Be ye therefore perfect, even as your Father which is in heaven is perfect."

Where does this come from? How could Jesus have commanded something so impossible, especially considering the Christian doctrine of "Original Sin"?

It's the very first verse in Leviticus 19!

"And the Lord spake unto Moses, saying,
2 Speak unto all the congregation of the children of Israel, and say unto them, Ye shall be holy: for I the Lord your God am holy"

So, there you have it! Many, if not most, of Jesus' most important teachings can be found right here in the Book of Leviticus, Chapter 19 and really weren't all that revolutionary.

Thanks for that summary of the history of these commandments, windword.

I don't believe that Jesus actually assumed that people were separated from God due to "Original Sin". This is a concept that Paul certainly built his revisions of Jesus' Teachings around - that we were all damned from the beginning - and so have faith, believe in Jesus, and you will be saved down the line.

Jesus never taught that - he spoke more in terms of recognizing one's eternal relationship with God. He spoke of communion with God in life, on a daily basis. Clearly this is what his two great commandments speak to and require.

If one is damned and separate from God from the beginning, how could one love God with the whole heart, mind, spirit, and strength? One clearly could not.

He taught that continuous communion with the Divine is the only means to perfectly fulfilling the commandments, and therefore required his followers to go beyond any separation from the Divine, and even being perfect in the Divine, as the Divine is - in this life, not to just believe in him, and then be saved when you die.

edit on 5/15/2015 by bb23108 because:



posted on May, 15 2015 @ 09:03 AM
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originally posted by: Akragon
a reply to: wasaka


If I was Jewish, would it be okay to lie, murder, and
steal from Genitals



I think they do that already at the age of 13...

snip!





Akra, it's the MUSLIMS who do that at 13 years-old....the Jews do it at 8 days old.



posted on May, 15 2015 @ 09:04 AM
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originally posted by: wasaka
If I was Jewish, would it be okay to ... steal from Genitals (because they are not my neighbor)?


LOL!

Gotta love those spell-checkers!

Or perhaps it was intentional, and wasaka meant, given his/her Location is "Sin City", that "what happens in Vegas stays in Vegas" should apply here?

Dunno, but his statement certainly could expand this conversation! That quote is a definite keeper!

A most excellent start of the day with mirth and merriment!


edit on 5/15/2015 by bb23108 because:



posted on May, 15 2015 @ 09:15 AM
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a reply to: bb23108

Thanks for you response bb!



If one is damned and separate from God from the beginning, how could one love God with the whole heart, mind, spirit, and strength? One clearly could not.


Actually, I think that's the beauty of the 2 Great Commandments, they're kinda circular. If you can't find "God" and/or "love" within yourself, then look for it in your brother, neighbor or even a stranger. Even if you're only giving lip service, exercise tolerance and compassion and you'll in turn, find it within yourself. Kinda like if your feeling sad just smile, because the act of smiling releases Dopamine that makes you happy.


edit on 15-5-2015 by windword because: (no reason given)



posted on May, 15 2015 @ 09:17 AM
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a reply to: WarminIndy




the Jews do it at 8 days old.


Did. Did do those things, but not these days. 'Aint gonna happen, their wives would kill them, these days.



posted on May, 15 2015 @ 09:25 AM
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a reply to: windword
Yes, we clearly should smile for others, and actually do smile for others, since we cannot even see our own smile!

Yes, the commandments are brilliant in the sense you mention in terms of circularity, and they also are like a Zen koan, as they are impossible for any ego to fulfill, so they require a real "giving up", that is, a constant surrender of one's whole self to the Divine, to actually be fulfilled.


edit on 5/15/2015 by bb23108 because:



posted on May, 15 2015 @ 11:13 AM
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a reply to: WarminIndy



Originally posted by Warminindy
To be fair, slavery was common in those days. But the Bible does not allow for mistreatment or cruelty to slaves and a man could not just have sex with a slave girl, he had to manumit her first.


“manumit” lol

You mean make her free, by selling/forcing her, to be a wife…?

You do realise, that girls who weren’t virgins were just immediately killed, according to “Gods commands”, described in Numbers 31…




Numbers 31:17
17 Now kill all the boys. And kill every woman who has slept with a man, 18 but save for yourselves every girl who has never slept with a man.




The reason there were Laws against having sex with female slaves, had nothing to do with fair treatment IMO, but was about not defiling them, so that they would remain pure, when the time came to sell them, to their future husbands!!!


- JC



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