by Roby Ellis
[Scripture Reading: John 13:33-35]
A. In His final instructions to the disciples, the one commandment that Jesus chose to emphasize was that they continue to love one another as He had loved them (John 15:12).
B. Jesus knew that the disciples would need one another to weather the storms ahead, and nothing could hold them together like love.
I. Why was brotherly love so important to Jesus at this moment?
A. Jesus saw love as the fulfilling of the law (Matthew 22:40).
B. When the disciples failed, only love would be strong enough to bring them back (John 21:15-17; Galatians 6:1-2).
C. Their love would prove to the world that Jesus truly was sent from God (John 17:21; Acts 5:33-38; 4:32-37).
II. How should we love one another?
A. We should love one another as Jesus loved the twelve (John 13:1; 15:13-15).
B. We should make the Christian walk easier for one another (Romans 14:13-15; 1 Corinthians 6:8).
C. We should be willing both to stand by one another (John 15:18-21) and up to one another (Galatians 2:11; 4:16).
D. We should always be eager and willing to forgive one another (Matthew 18:15; cf. Luke 7:40-43; 1 Peter 4:8).
A. Because we live in a world that hates us, we must stand together if we wish to stand at all, because our adversary is certain to devour us if we allow ourselves to drift apart (1 Peter 5:8).
B. If your brotherly love has been lacking, start looking for opportunities to nourish it and to show it.