John 15: 9-12 (NIV) 9 “As the Father has loved me, so have I loved you. Now remain in my love. 10 If you keep my commands, you will remain in my love, just as I have kept my Father’s commands and remain in his love. 11 I have told you this so that my joy may be in you and that your joy may be complete. 12 My command is this: Love each other as I have loved you.
The 11th Commandment
As we explore “What is our Mandate?” for Point of Grace, we clearly should search the scriptures for why it is that we are here. There are no clearer instructions from Jesus to his disciples (and to us now) than this passage in John. We are to Love! Just as God (the Father) has loved Jesus (the son), and Jesus loves us, we are to “Love each other.”
Loving each other is such an easy concept, but so hard to put into practice. It’s easy to love our family and friends and those that are like us. But what about those that are not like us? Samaritans? Tax Collectors? Muslims? Atheists? The Bible can help us here also. Below are just a few verses …
“the Lord’s servant must not be quarrelsome, but kind to everyone, able to teach, patiently enduring evil, correcting his opponents with gentleness.” 2 Tim 2:23-26
“But I say to you who hear, Love your enemies, do good to those who hate you, bless those who curse you, pray for those who abuse you. To one who strikes you on the cheek, offer the other also, and from one who takes away your cloak do not withhold your tunic either. Give to everyone who begs from you, and from one who takes away your goods do not demand them back.” Luke 6:27-35
“Let love be genuine. Abhor what is evil; hold fast to what is good. Love one another with brotherly affection. Outdo one another in showing honor. Do not be slothful in zeal, be fervent in spirit, serve the Lord. Rejoice in hope, be patient in tribulation, be constant in prayer. Contribute to the needs of the saints and seek to show hospitality.” Romans 12:9-21
“Love is patient and kind; love does not envy or boast; it is not arrogant or rude. It does not insist on its own way; it is not irritable or resentful; it does not rejoice at wrongdoing, but rejoices with the truth. Love bears all things, believes all things, hopes all things, endures all things.” 1 Cor 13:4-7
Exhibiting Christ-like love for others often seems like a daunting and unachievable task. Yet that is His commandment … His Mandate to us. Fortunately for us, we have Christ’s grace and forgiveness to keep us in abide with him when can’t live up His example of perfect love!
Blessings, John H