What does Romans 13:8 mean?
ESV: Owe no one anything, except to love each other, for the one who loves another has fulfilled the law.
NIV: Let no debt remain outstanding, except the continuing debt to love one another, for whoever loves others has fulfilled the law.
NASB: Owe nothing to anyone except to love one another; for the one who loves his neighbor has fulfilled the Law.
CSB: Do not owe anyone anything, except to love one another, for the one who loves another has fulfilled the law.
NLT: Owe nothing to anyone — except for your obligation to love one another. If you love your neighbor, you will fulfill the requirements of God’s law.
KJV: Owe no man any thing, but to love one another: for he that loveth another hath fulfilled the law.
NKJV: Owe no one anything except to love one another, for he who loves another has fulfilled the law.
Verse Commentary:
Paul transitions here from discussing what is owed to human authorities, including respect and honor, to what is owed to everyone.

The command to owe no one anything should not necessarily be read as a command to Christians never to borrow money for any reason. The sense of the Greek is that we should not let any debt remain outstanding—that we should not keep on owing anyone for anything. That may be understood as a requirement to always pay what we owe in a timely manner according to whatever agreement we have made with the lender. Or, put another way, to not live lives of constant dependency, borrowing, or unreliability.

In truth, however, Paul is not primarily concerned with money here, as the following verses will show. He wants to talk about our obligation as Jesus-followers to love other people, including our neighbors. He seems to say that loving others is a debt we will never pay off. We will never be done with "paying" love to each other.

How does continuing to pay our debt to love others fulfill the law, exactly? Paul is reflecting what Jesus said are the two greatest commandments, to love God and our neighbors (Mark 12:29–31). Paul will show in the following verses that Christlike love will naturally motivate us to keep all the other relationship commands in the law.
Verse Context:
Romans 13:8–14 describes the Christian obligation to love our neighbors as we love ourselves. To do this is to fulfill the law of Moses, because love itself never hurts anyone. The time has come for believers to cast off any works of darkness, including drunkenness, immorality, and jealousy. Instead, we should live as people who walk in the light, taking on the spiritual armor of light and Christ Himself.
Chapter Summary:
Romans 13 tackles three big areas that living-sacrifice Christians must address. First, since God puts every human authority in place to serve His purposes, Christians must submit to them; this idea comes with a particular context. Second, we must love our neighbors as ourselves. Third, we are called to live as people of the light and throw off works of darkness like drunkenness, sexual immorality, and jealousy. We are to take on the armor of light against the darkness and, in fact, take on Christ Himself instead of serving our own desires.
Chapter Context:
The prior chapter described the ideas of becoming a living sacrifice for Christ and being transformed by that relationship. In chapter 12, Paul gives certain applications of what this looks like for Christians who have received God's great mercy. Paul instructs believers to live in submission to human authorities in government because God has put them there for His purposes. Loving our neighbors as we love ourselves is the ongoing obligation of every Christian. Finally, we must throw off any works of darkness we have been taking part in and take defensive positions against the darkness in spiritual armor of light. The time has come to take on Christ and stop arranging our lives to serve our own desires.
Book Summary:
The book of Romans is the New Testament's longest, most structured, and most detailed description of Christian theology. Paul lays out the core of the gospel message: salvation by grace alone through faith alone. His intent is to explain the good news of Jesus Christ in accurate and clear terms. As part of this effort, Paul addresses the conflicts between law and grace, between Jews and Gentiles, and between sin and righteousness. As is common in his writing, Paul closes out his letter with a series of practical applications.
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