John 13:34-35 A new commandment I give to you, that you love one another; as I have loved you, that you also love one another. By this all will know that you are My disciples, if you have love for one another.
Loving one another: Jesus Himself calls you and me to freely give love to each other. Some quick observations…
- Loving one another is non-optional – “a new commandment I give to you” – I must do it whether I feel like it or not.
- Loving one another means loving others like Jesus loves – “as I have loved you” – I must lay down my life to enhance the lives of others — their needs before my needs.
- Loving one another marks me as a follower of Christ before a watching world – “all will know that you are My disciples” – our mutual love for each other will draw a watching world that is hungry for what we have.
Although the word used by Jesus refers primarily to an act of the will, Peter would later add that we are to love one another “earnestly from the heart” – with heat and passion and feeling.
Imagine with me a church full of members doing this. Sacrificially loving each other with great affection in an open, flagrant manner. What would it look like? What would it feel like?
When can we start?