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Over ten years had passed since my father and his older brother had spoken. They were not mad at each other. They just lived in separate ends of the country and were busy with work and raising their families. They drifted apart. Then, my uncle phoned. He was traveling through our area on business and asked if he could spend the night. My Dad said yes. I remember sitting in the living room as Dad and his brother talked and caught up on each other’s lives.
My Dad’s offer of hospitality was a sign of brotherly love, the love for family. It illustrates what Hebrews 13:1-3 says, “Keep on loving each other as brothers. Do not forget to entertain strangers, for by so doing some people have entertained angels without knowing it. Remember those in prison as if you were their fellow prisoners, and those who are mistreated as if you yourselves were suffering.” (NIV)
The passage mentions two ways to show brotherly love. First, showing hospitality to strangers. In the first century, people often stayed with others when traveling. Christians often asked to stay with other Christians. The passage also mentions Christians suffering in prison. In the Roman world, friends and family often provided food to supplement the meager fare prisoners received. This shows us that Christians should help other Christians because we are members of the same spiritual family. We must love each other as brothers.
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Bumper music “Landing Place” performed by Mark July, used under license from Shutterstock.