In today’s Gospel, Jesus states his commandment of love. In the preceding verses, he tells his disciples that the way they could remain in his love is for them to keep his commandments (Jn 15:9-10). His commandment demands that his followers should love one another as he himself has loved them. But how does Jesus show his love? He treats them not as second-rate people but as friends. He looks at his disciples with dignity. Furthermore, he loves them — the greatest sense of what true friendship is. Self-giving attitude characterizes the kind of friendship that Jesus offers. It is a friendship that does not seek to aggrandize the self but gives oneself to one’s friends, even to the point of laying down one’s life.
We know the kind of love that Jesus demands of us. How do we concretize his commandment of love? How do we make the love of Jesus operational in the context of friendship?
GOSPEL • JOHN 15:12-17
Jesus said to his disciples: “This is my commandment: love one another as I love you. No one has greater love than this, to lay down one’s life for one’s friends. You are my friends if you do what I command you. I no longer call you slaves, because a slave does not know what his master is doing. I have called you friends, because I have told you everything I have heard from my Father. It was not you who chose me, but I who chose you and appointed you to go and bear fruit that will remain, so that whatever you ask the Father in my name he may give you. This I command you: love one another.”
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