“A new commandment I give to you, that you love one another, even as I have loved you, that you also love one another.” — John 13:34
“This is My commandment: that you love one another, as I have loved you. 13 Greater love has no man than this: that a man lay down his life for his friends. 14 You are My friends if you do whatever I command you.” — John 15:12-14
Now we are down to it — Jesus’ mighty acts of salvation are beginning. The setting is the Last Supper; Jesus knows these are the last calm moments he will share with his disciples before the madness of arrest, torture and execution.
His last words then, must be those he desperately wants his friends to understand and remember. And what are those words? A new commandment: Love.
Thursday in Holy Week is called Maundy Thursday, from the Latin word that gives us mandate and command. Today is forever named after the new command Jesus gives to His disciples on the night before He is crucified. LOVE.
It is love, after all, which drives him each step of the way toward Calvary, love for us. The dying Savior on the cross presents the perfect picture of the lengths God will go to have us with him.
If the events of this weekend show you nothing else, let them show you this: Love is God’s nature and name, His very substance, and Easter is the picture of how he loves you. God is love, and you are his beloved child. Never doubt it.