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
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
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
MINI-VIDEO ON THIS PASSAGE BY PASTOR SHAWN BOONSTRA
GREAT VIDEO CLIP ON PRAYER BY JONI EARECKSON TADA
EXCELLENT VIDEO SERMON ON WHERE YOU LOOK YOU GO BY PASTOR IVAN
LINKS WORTH CHECKING OUT
Most Important Decision in Life:
Seeking God Made Real: http://vimeo.com/31489782
LINKS FOR BIBLE STUDIES AND SEMINARS
Glow Tract Video Bible Studies: http://www.bibleresearch.info/