Love for Our Brothers and Sisters
HOW many brothers and sisters do you have?— Not everyone has a brother or a sister in his family at home. If you have even one, you can be thankful.
God made us so that we feel especially close to certain people. We may have many friends, but brothers and sisters usually care about one another even more than friends do. When one is in trouble, the other helps out. That’s the kind of brother you would want to have, isn’t it?—
But not everyone is good to his brother or his sister. The Bible tells us about a person who hit his brother. Do you know his name?— He was Cain, a son of the first man.
One day Cain took some food that he had grown as a farmer. He made a gift or an offering of this food to Jehovah. His brother Abel also made an offering to Jehovah. Abel offered to God the very best sheep that he had. God was pleased with Abel and with his offering. But he was not pleased with Cain and his offering.
Why was that?— It was not because Abel offered the most. And it was not just his offering a sheep that made the difference. The Bible tells us that God can see what is in people’s hearts. He knows how we feel deep inside ourselves.
What did God see in Cain’s heart?— He saw that Cain did not really love his brother. Cain could see that Jehovah was pleased with Abel and his offering. But did Cain try to change so that he would be like his brother?— No. He became angry.
Jehovah told Cain that he should change his ways. But Cain did not listen. If he had really loved God, he would have paid attention to him. But he did not love God. And he did not love his brother.
So, one day he said to Abel: “Let us go over into the field.” Cain had bad in his heart, but Abel did not know it. Abel went along with Cain. While they were there in the field alone, Cain hit his brother. He hit him so hard that he killed him. Wasn’t that terrible?— —Genesis 4:2-8.
The Bible tells us that there is a special lesson that we should learn from that. Do you know what it is?— ‘This is the message which you have heard from the beginning: we should have love for one another; not like Cain, who came from the wicked one.’ So brothers and sisters should have love for one another. They should not be like Cain.—1 John 3:11, 12.
Why would it be so bad to be like Cain?— Because the Bible says that he ‘came from the wicked one.’ Since Cain acted like the Devil, it was just as if the Devil were his father. Think of that!
Do you see why it is so important to love your brothers and sisters?— If you do not love them, whose child would you be?— You would be a child of the Devil. You wouldn’t want to be that, would you?— So how can you prove that you want to be a child of God?— It is by really loving your brothers and sisters.
But what is love?— Love is a deep feeling inside us that makes us want to do good things for other people. We show that we love others when we have a good feeling toward them. We show it when we do good things for them. And if we really love someone, will we hold off from doing good to him until he first does something for us?—
God doesn’t do that. Even before we loved God, God loved us. We can learn from this. Even before others show love for us, we can show that we love them.
The Bible says that Christians have many more brothers and sisters than just those who live in the same house with them. Do you know who they are?— Jesus said: ‘Whoever does the will of my Father in heaven is my brother and sister.’ That means that all who do God’s will are brothers and sisters. They are a special family of brothers and sisters. Did you know that?— —Matthew 12:50.
Do you love all the brothers and sisters in this big Christian family?— Jesus said that we should. He said: ‘Everyone will know that you are my disciples if you love one another.’ We cannot love just a few of them. We must love all of our brothers and sisters.—John 13:35.
How can we show that we really love them?— Well, if we love them, we won’t stay away from them because we don’t want to talk to them. We will be friendly to all of them. We will always do good to them. And if ever they are in trouble, we will come to their help, because we are truly a big family.
When we really do love all our brothers and sisters, what does it prove?— It proves that we are disciples of Jesus, the Great Teacher. And isn’t that what we want to be?—