Our Gospel this week is John 15:9-17, taken today from the Christian Standard Bible (CSB).
As the Father has loved me, I have also loved you. Remain in my love. 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. I have told you these things so that my joy may be in you and your joy may be complete. This is my command: Love one another as I have loved you. No one has greater love than this: to lay down his life for his friends. You are my friends if you do what I command you. I do not call you servants anymore, because a servant doesn’t know what his master is doing. I have called you friends, because I have made known to you everything I have heard from my Father. You did not choose me, but I chose you. I appointed you to go and produce fruit and that your fruit should remain, so that whatever you ask the Father in my name, he will give you. This is what I command you: Love one another.
Jesus has much to teach us about love in this passage. He says in verse 9 “As the Father has loved me, I have also loved you. Remain in my love.” This tells us that God’s love given to Jesus has been passed to us, and we are invited to be part of all God is doing in the world.
We are not forced to become part of the kingdom but we are asked to choose between God’s everlasting love and the wickedness of the world that puts self first. Jesus came to earth to show us the joy we can know when we put God and others ahead of ourselves, truly loving one another. This is His example to us and the call He places on our lives.
Are we ready to choose? Jesus made the choice to give Himself up for our salvation. We may not be asked to give up our lives but we must be ready to do so in His name.
Gracious God, we are humbled by Christ’s sacrifice to save us. Help us to walk in faith, ready to do what is needed to save others. Amen.