Accountability Partners Ask, “Am I My Brother’s Keeper?”
Maybe you are wondering about your responsibility to serve as an accountability partner. Why should you have to do anything to help your partner? Perhaps you are asking, “Am I my brother’s keeper?” But you might recall that the first person to ask this question certainly was not considering how best to care for others.
The Bible says that the first man and woman on earth had two sons (among others) named Cain and Abel. Out of jealousy and rage, Cain killed his brother in the field. When God asked him where Abel was, Cain responded, “I do not know. Am I my brother’s keeper?” (See Genesis 4:1–10.)
Far from being his brother’s keeper, Cain became his brother’s murderer. He is obviously not someone to imitate in word or in deed.
How Can I Show Love?
A better question to ask might be, “What can I do right now to love this person?” While it may and often does include emotion, love is fundamentally a resolve to act in the best interests of the one you love.
Love is fundamentally a resolve to act in the best interests of the one you love.
Jesus said that the greatest commandments are to love God and to love your neighbors (Matthew 22:34–40). But one person asked about who qualifies to be his neighbor. In reply, Jesus told a parable about a man who had been severely mistreated by robbers and then neglected by two religious leaders. This man finally received help from someone who normally would have been his enemy.
To conclude the story, Jesus asked,
“Which of these three do you think proved to be a neighbor to the man who fell into the robbers’ hands?”
And he [the man who had asked about neighbors] said, “The one who showed mercy toward him.”
Then Jesus said to him, “Go and do the same.” (Luke 10:36–37).
So, love resolves to act in the best interests of the one you love.
How to Show Love
God’s Word says that love should mark all relationships:
A friend loves at all times, and a brother is born for adversity. (Proverbs 17:17)
Love does no wrong to a neighbor; therefore love is the fulfillment of the law. (Romans 13:10)
The Bible says, “Owe nothing to anyone except to love one another; for he who loves his neighbor has fulfilled the law.”
What does this love look like?
- If you see someone in need, do something to help meet that need.
- If you see someone in danger, do something to deliver them.
- If you see someone who is suffering, seek to comfort and encourage them.
- If you see someone who is treating others shamefully, rebuke the offender and protect the offended.
- If you see someone who is making poor choices, warn them and encourage them toward wisdom.
For other ideas on what love looks like, see Romans 12:9–21 and 1 Corinthians 13:1–13.
A Responsibility to Love
Treat others the way that you want to be treated. Do for others what you would want them to do for you. The Bible says, “Owe nothing to anyone except to love one another; for he who loves his neighbor has fulfilled the law” (Romans 13:8).