John 13:34, 35 - The New Command - Love As Jesus Did.

John 13:34, 35: The New Command - Love As Jesus Did.

John 13:34, 35 (NIV) "A new command I give you: Love one 
another. As I have loved you, so you must love one another. By this all 
men will know that you are my disciples, if you love one another." 

   How could Jesus' command to "love each other" be called" a 
new commandment"? Jesus had already echoed the Old Testament, "Love 
your neighbor" (Matthew 5:43). And he had already raised the bar by 
adding, "But I say, love your enemies" (Matthew 5:44). What was new 
about this command?  
   Jesus is not calling us to love others - even our enemies - 
as ourselves, but to love them as Christ has loved us. "Just as I 
have loved you, you should love each other." Later, Jesus explained 
this even more to his disciples, "There is no greater love than to 
lay down one's life for one's friends" (John 15:13). This is a 
foot-washing sort of love. This is a life-giving sort of love.  
   Are we capable of this kind of love? Peter thought he was. 
"I'm ready to die for you," he told Jesus (John 13:37). But Jesus 
knew better. It was not until after Peter's denial and then Jesus' 
redemption that Peter's love would be ready (John 21:15-17). Only after 
tasting redemption would Peter be ready to love as Jesus loved (John 
   In the same way, we cannot love as Jesus loves until we have 
experienced the redemption that comes from His love. [One Year NLT SB] 

   Jesus commanded his disciples, "Just as I have loved you, you 
should love each other" (John 13:34). You know what happened next - 
Jesus died for their sins. This was the ultimate demonstration of 
love. As Christ's followers reflected that love, others would surely 
notice (13:35).  
   What separates Christians from the rest of the world is love. 
If you belong to Christ, love others as he loved you. Help people 
when it's not convenient. Give of your resources even when it hurts. 
Devote your energy to others' welfare rather than your own, and absorb 
hurts from others without complaining or fighting back. This kind of 
love does not come naturally. That is why only God's people, with the 
help of the Holy Spirit, can love unconditionally. This kind of love 
makes others sit up and notice. [The One Year Through the Bible 
Devotional by Dave Veerman] 

We are to love each other as Jesus loved us, and he loved us 
enough to give his life for us. We may not have to die for someone, but 
there are other ways to practice sacrificial love: listening, helping, 
encouraging, giving. Think of someone in particular who needs this kind of 
love today. [Life Application SB re 15:12, 13] 

Christ's love is deep and earnest, flowing like an irrepressible 
stream to all who will accept it. There is no selfishness in His love. 
If this heaven-born love is an abiding principle in the heart, it 
will make itself known, not only to those we hold most dear in sacred 
relationship, but to all with whom we come in contact. It will lead us to 
bestow little acts of attention, to make concessions, to perform deeds 
of kindness, to speak tender, true, encouraging words. It will lead 
us to sympathize with those whose hearts hunger for sympathy 

   When we consciously choose to surrender our lives to Christ's 
care and control, we are choosing to trust him, follow him, and make 
his plan our plan. He has given us his Word, the Bible, to tell us 
what he is like, what he wants from us, and how we can be more like 
him. Most of all, that comes down to one thing - love. He asks that 
we love each other as he has loved us. That's a tall order, and one 
that is possible only as we allow his perfect love to flow through 
   He asks that we show our love by supporting one another. 
This, he tells us, is how the world will know that we are different, 
that we are his followers. Bumper stickers, t-shirts, tattoos, and 
boycotts won't do. Only showing love will do.  
   It's not hard to show love, not really. Everyone around us 
needs love, so we just need to ask God to help us open the floodgates 
and let his love pour out through us onto everyone we see. It's a 
privilege and an honor to love someone God loves. It should be a pleasure 
indeed to obey his command. [Celebrate Recovery Daily Devotional by 
John & Johnny Baker] 


The Tough Choice
   Melissa Spencer had a secret problem. Two months earlier, she 
and her boyfriend Matt had had sexual intercourse. It was her first 
time. Now she was pregnant. And Matt, immature and desperate, was 
pressuring her to "get rid" of the baby. When Melissa refused, he beat her. 
Life seemed dark and hopeless to her. She was afraid to tell anyone 
about her problems, especially her single mom. 
   But Melissa's best friend, Jessica Bullard, knew, and that 
secret tormented Jessica. Melissa had made Jessica promise to keep 
quiet about her secret. 
   "If you tell anyone." warned Melissa, "I'll hate you 
forever." But Jessica could barely contain her rage when she saw how Matt 
was abusing Melissa. 
   Though she knew she was risking a strong friendship, Jessica 
decided to get help for Melissa before it was too late. She asked to 
meet with Melissa's aunt and uncle and, sobbing, told them Melissa's 
   They thanked Jessica for her honesty and courage, then they 
found Melissa and gently confronted her with the truth. After 
Melissa's initial shock, she broke down crying, asking them for help. 
   Melissa was angry with Jessica for violating her trust. But 
in less than a week, she forgave Jessica and told her how relieved 
she was that Jessica had told.  
   Melissa got the help she needed. And she gave birth to a 
healthy little girl who was adopted by a couple who could never have 
   Just as Jessica risked something important to her for the 
good of her friend, Jesus encourages those who follow him to love 
each other with a self-sacrificing love. Read about this kind of love 
in John 13:31-35. 
	How is Jessica's decision to tell Melissa's secret similar 
to Jesus' decision to go to the cross? 
	What's one way you can love your best friend the way Jesus 
loved his disciples? 
	Consider talking to a friend who has been doing something 
that concerns you. 
	Consider making a pact with a friend, promising each other 
to be open to criticism and direction regarding the choices you 
each make in life. [Youth SB] 


   It cannot be said often enough that true Christians are 
lovers" lovers of God and other people. 
   Christianity will make you a kinder person. Christianity will 
make you more thoughtful of others, more merciful, and more careful 
of how you speak to and about others. Christianity will transform 
your life. 
   The mean or harsh Christian is an impossibility, a 
contradiction in terms. We have to be one or the other"Christian or 
unthoughtful, Christian or harsh. We cannot be both. Christianity softens both 
our attitudes and our actions. It informs them with love. 
   Lord, today we pray that You will help us to love and to be 
the real thing. Help us to internalize the great principle of Your 
character, help us to be more like Jesus. In addition, show us someone to 
whom we can express Your loving care today. [Walking With Jesus By 








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