“Love does no harm to a neighbor; therefore love is the fulfillment of the law.” – Romans 13:10 NKJV
What does it mean to be a “good neighbor”? Is it watching out for another’s property while they’re on vacation? Putting someone’s trash container away? Or taking a meal during a sickness? Very simply, it’s “Christlikeness”. In Romans chapters 12-13, Paul is talking about “putting on Christ” in every circle of our life. Whether it’s vocational or personal, he says to “live peaceably” and “walk properly”. He even says to respect government officials and pay taxes with a good attitude. That can be especially challenging when the leaders aren’t very “respectable”; but an honest consideration of the political context in which he wrote those words, it’s hard to justify not doing so.
At the end of the day, to “put on Christ” is to go beyond being neighborly to the ones who are neighborly, it’s also doing so to the ones who aren’t. Often that takes the empowering of the Holy Spirit; and in His power today, may we be “good neighbors”.