(Proverbs 14:21 KJV) He that despiseth his neighbour sinneth: but he that hath mercy on the poor, happy is he.
I live in a mixed neighborhood. By that I don’t mean racially or culturally mixed, although that is also true. What I mean is that the “neighbor” (7453) on one side is wonderful. The people on two sides are very short of wonderful. On one corner they have loud parties. It is mixed.
Am I one who “despiseth” (despises NASB) (936) my less than wonderful neighbors? I hope not. This says that someone who acts and feels that way “sinneth” (sins NASB) (2398). This word is defined as holding in contempt and holding as insignificant. We might talk about looking down on someone.
It doesn’t look like this is a matter of choice. I can pick where I live. I can change who my neighbors are if I want to move. Those are choices I can make. This is one that has no options.
So? Time for an attitude check. Think about how you greet your neighbors. I hope you are not one of those people who look the other way and act like they don’t exist. As Jesus said to the woman caught in adultery after He forgave her, “go, and sin no more.”