The Neighbor We Are to Love Is Humankind on a Wider Scale in the Form of Smaller and Larger Communities and Humankind in the Aggregate as a Country of Such Communities (Continued)

Our country is our neighbor more than our community is, because our country consists of many communities. Love for our country is therefore broader and higher. Loving our country is also loving the well-being of the general public.

Our country is our neighbor because it is like a parent. We were born in it. It has nourished us and continues to nourish us. It has kept us safe from harm and continues to do so.

We are to do good to our country with love according to what it needs. Some of its needs are earthly and some are spiritual. Its earthly needs center on its civic life and order. Its spiritual needs center on its spiritual life and order.

We are to love our country not merely as much as we love ourselves; we are to love it more. There is a law written on the human heart that gives rise to the statement all just people say when they are in imminent danger of dying because of an enemy or some other cause. They say that it is a noble thing to die for their country. They say that it is a glorious thing for soldiers to shed their blood for their country. They say this because that is how much one ought to love one’s country.

It is important to know that if people love their country and benefit it because they wish it well, they love the Lord’s kingdom after death. The Lord’s kingdom is their country at that point. And those who love the Lord’s kingdom love the Lord, since the Lord is everything to all his kingdom.

from True Christianity, Section 414

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