(Proverbs 6:1 KJV) My son, if thou be surety for thy friend, if thou hast stricken thy hand with a stranger,
It would seem that there is a parallel between “friend” (neighbor NASB) (7453) and a “stranger” (2114a). These two words together bring to mind the teaching that Jesus gave in the Parable of the Good Samaritan about “who is my neighbor.” I can’t remember if I touched on this before but it is worth repeating, I think.
Certain words have a general meaning although there are times of exception. “Neighbor” is a word that I think is used in contrast to “brother.” A neighbor is a non-believer. A brother is a believer. We are to love our neighbor as ourselves, as Jesus taught. We are to love our brothers even more.
We live in an affluent age. Even in the current economy we are better off than most people in the world. We have a real responsibility to our “neighbors.” One of the reasons that America is so generous is this Christian teaching which is embedded in our culture.
At the same time we should have priorities. We have a greater responsibility to fellow believers than we do to non-believers.
So? Are their needs in your church? I mean real needs like the father that is out of work for the first time in memory, not the church sponge who always has a hand out. Look, see and give. Be a blessing.