“A new commandment I give to you, that you love one another: just as I have loved you, you also are to love one another. By this all people will know that you are my disciples, if you have love for one another.” (John 13:34-35) This commandment is new because Lord Jesus demonstrates that love. He loved unworthy, ungrateful, poor, marginalized with unconditional, sacrificial, and self-giving love. Apostle John amplifies this thought in his epistle.
1) Origin of love: God is Love and love is from God, whoever loves is born of God. (I John 4:7) God’s love transforms a person, that s/he becomes the channel of that love. In fact, there is no true love apart from God.
2) Love is life: Believers have passed from death to life, so love one another. (I John 3:14) Disciples who experience such true love are stewards of that love. Their superior or unique spiritual life is demonstration of love to others. Life of love is celebration, joy, hope, faith and not anxiety or hate or despair.
3) Love is righteousness: One who loves practices righteousness in contrast to those who hate and are children of devil. (I John 3:10) One who loves God has right relationship with God, which becomes righteous relationship with others – spouse, parents, siblings, relatives, neighbours, colleagues, strangers and enemies. A disciple does what is right in God’s eyes, at all times and in every place.
4) Know God: Those who know God, knows love, intentions and intensiveness of love. (I John 4:8) God’s sacrificial love is understood and are willing to lay down life for brothers and sisters. (I John 3:16)
5) Love is light: Those who love walks in light. (I John 2:9,10) One who cannot love seen brothers and sisters cannot love God who is unseen. Love of God teaches them that all are born equal and all deserve love.
Do I Love others as I love myself?