Gospel: John 15:9-17
As the Father has loved me, so I have loved you. Remain in my love! You will remain in my love if you keep my commandments, just as I have kept my Father’s commandments and remain in his love.
I have told you all this, that my own joy may be in you, and your joy may be complete. This is my commandment: Love one another as I have loved you! There is no greater love than this, to give one’s life for one’s friends; and you are my friends, if you do what I command you.
I shall not call you servants anymore, because servants do not know what their master is about. Instead, I have called you friends, since I have made known to you everything I learned from my Father.
You did not choose me; it was I who chose you and sent you to go and bear fruit, fruit that will last. And everything you ask the Father in my name, he will give you.
This is my command, that you love one another.
“Love one another ‘as I have loved you!’”
We may wonder why Jesus says, “No greater love than this, to give one’s life to one’s friends.” Why not one’s enemies? The context tells us clearly that Jesus considers his disciples friends, not slaves or servants. He is going to die for them as treasured friends. He asks them to do the same among themselves. That is the way they show their love for one another. That is what friendship is all about. It is sacrificing oneself for the sake of others, that one’s friends may survive. This is heroism par excellence.
The expressions used like “love one another… remain in my love” seem to be romantic. Actually they are tall orders. Relationship with Jesus and with fellow disciples en- joins us to prioritize the interest or needs of others.
It is a violation of this commandment when a disciple of Christ sacrifices his fellow disciples in order to survive. When the going gets rough, he puts the blame on others, rather than on himself, to escape criticisms or responsibility.
On the cross, Jesus takes responsibility on our sins. Instead of us suffering the consequences, he voluntarily takes all the punishments for our faults and misbehavior.
© Copyright Bible Diary 2019