Be devoted to one another in brotherly love; give preference to one another in honor; not lagging behind in diligence, fervent in spirit, serving the Lord; Romans 12:10-11
To be devoted means to commit by a solemn act. The word in Greek is Philostorgos (fil-os’-tor-gos). It also means to have loving affection, to love tenderly, prone to love. We should do things for each other with the love that God has given us. We are brothers and sisters in Christ and that makes us family and we should love and respect each other as a family member.
To give preference means to show the way the Lord desires us to be, to be an example not only to brothers and sisters, but to be examples to those who are seeking and do not yet understand the truth of God’s love. The word in Greek for preference is Proegeomai (pro-ay-geh’-om-ahee) and it means to go before and show the way, to go before and lead, to go before as a leader. To give preference with honor would then be to lead or go before someone with reverence or respect.
Jesus gave us preference, He showed us the way love should be for each other – the true love that God has shown and continues to show each of us. He is our leader just as we are each leaders in a way God desires us to be. Each of us has a very specific purpose to fulfill, but one thing we all share is the love God has given us and for us to be able to reflect that love to others.
The next part of that verse says not to lag behind in diligence. To be lagging is to be sluggish or backward. Diligence is to strive after something. The word of God calls us to strive to be Christ like. So to be lagging in diligence would be to stop growing in the word of God, to stop getting to know the Lord better, to stop loving others the way God desires us to.
Fervent in Greek is Zeo (dzeh’-o) and it means to have zeal. To have zeal for something means to have a passion for it. We should have a passionate spirit in us to serve God. We should also have a passionate desire in us to love each other the way God desires us to.
So we are to solemnly love each other, with respect show others the way as a leader, don’t be sluggish or backward in working for God, but have zeal for what is good and acceptable in His sight.