As the disciples were competing for higher positions in the Messianic Kingdom it was only a matter of time before the enemy will take control, disrupt their fellowship cause disunity and cripple Jesus’ plan. Our Lord was aware of this situation when He told them to love one another. Even as Valentine’s is around the corner join me to find out what it really means to love one another.
1. It’s a command to obey
A. “…A new command I give you. Love one another…” “commandment” (Greek: “entole”) means “an authoritative prescription”
B. For most people love is optional and conditional. For Christians love is a commandment to obey unconditionally
C. Application: Love the other person if your love for the Lord is real, (John 14:15)
2. It’s a new commandment
A. “…A new command I give you…” The old commandment was, “Love your neighbour as yourself”.
B. This is the meaning of Jesus’ new commandment: “Love your neighbour more than yourself”
C. Application: Seek the welfare of the other person at the cost of your best interests.
3. A pattern to follow
A. “…As I have loved you, so must love one another”
B. Served to the extent of death, (John 13:1-17; John 15:13) – Extended forgiveness, accepted even the traitor.
C. Application: Live for Christ and you will not serve selfish ambitions, extend forgiveness and enjoy fellowship with everyone.
4. An identity to guard
A. “By this everyone will know that you are my disciples, if you love one another” Love was Jesus’ identity and continues to be the identity of his real disciples.
B. The world with hawk-like eyes tries to locate weaknesses and failure in God’s children to justify their own guilt and condemnation.
C. Within the church there’s a deep cry for disciples to show that they really do love one another in obedience to Christ.
Love is a sincere expression of unselfishness. It is miraculously capable of defeating competition, bring healing into hurting relationships and nullifying the plans of our enemy. Sacrificial love for one another alone is capable of preserving the unity of the saints. United we stand, divided we fall.