“Gosh, We Were Just Being Brothers.”

A mother came upon what looked to her like a “knock down, drag out brawl” between her two sons.

“What are you two doing? Get up from there before someone gets hurt!” she commanded.

Slowly they unlocked arms, untangled legs and slowly made it to their feet. “Gosh,” said a rather bewildered son, trying to tuck his shirt back into his pants, “We were just being brothers.”

CONSIDER this—the word on the Greek New Testament for brothers is adelphos; and the word used to describe love between brothers is phileo. When the Greeks put these two words together they got philadelphos; we get Philadelphia, the city of “brotherly love.” Several places in the New Testament Christians are admonished to “let brotherly love continue” as the writer of Hebrews tells it.

Jesus used another word when talking about the relationship between brothers, sister, or anyone else for that matter. The word Jesus used was agape, or love that is felt so deeply that it causes us to act for the good of someone else without any kind of payoff for ourselves. It is a ‘selfless’ response towards another, with the good or well-being of the other our only motivation.

While brotherly love is commendable, unfortunately this love tends to turn into “just being brothers” too often. It is the agape love which we are to strive for, and it is agape love which gives us the power and force which truly makes us brothers and sisters in Christ.

And he answered, “You shall love the Lord your God with all your heart and with all your soul and with all your strength and with all your mind, and your neighbor as yourself.” (Luke 10:27)

Rev. Wendell Mettey
Revised 3/18/2013

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