John 13.34– ‘a new commandment I give to you, that you love one another, as I have loved you.’
The most important words are recorded in the New Testament. Everything conspires to make them impressive. They come from the lips of the world’s greatest religious teacher. The occasion was the last night of his earthly life. The language suggests parental tenderness. for he calls these men ‘little children’. It was a new commandment in its meaning. A writer says that John in his extreme old age, being carried into the church in Ephesus, was wont to repeat again and again, ‘little children, love one another’. When asked why he said this so many times, his reply was ‘it is the Lord’s commandment, and if it only be fulfilled, it is enough.’
It is noteworthy that the man who came nearest to the heart of Jesus came to feel that the new commandment was Jesus’ crowning words. It was a new commandment in its motive. A new statement of love was now set up, loving after the manner of Jesus himself. Loving the neighbor after the fashion of the Good Samaritan, or the love commanded in the golden rule is not enough. We are to love one another in that higher sense after the fashion of the Son of God. To thus love another, we must know each other better. Many Christians do not know each other, and what is worse, they do not want to know one another. Yet this was our Lord’s deepest desire– to know and love each other. Has not the time arrived for believers in Jesus Christ to take him at his word? We must if we are to inherit everlasting life. What will be your choice?