A new commandment I give unto you, That ye love one another; as I have loved you, that ye also love one another – John 13:34
In the Old Testament, God gave the Israelites several commandments, which they had to obey as a condition for enjoying the blessings of the covenant. However, when Jesus came, He brought in a new commandment, which is love. He said, “A new commandment I give unto you, that ye love one another; as I have loved you, that ye also love one another” (John 13:34). He gave this commandment before His crucifixion. He commanded His disciples to love one another because love, for them, was an outside force. Thus, He had to give them a law to walk in love.
But then, the Bible tells us something striking in 1 Timothy 1:9, that “…the law is not made for a righteous man, but for the lawless and disobedient, for the ungodly and for sinners, for unholy and profane, for murderers of fathers and murderers of mothers, for manslayers….” Now, after giving His disciples the love commandment, He proceeded to die on the cross for us, and God raised Him back to life. “…Thou art my Son, today have I begotten thee” (Hebrews 5:5). Today, everyone who believes in Him receives eternal life, and becomes a new creation (2 Corinthians 5:17).
In Him, we’ve been made the righteousness of God (2 Corinthians 5:21), so the law isn’t applicable to us because it was made for the unrighteous, but we are righteous. By making us new creations, He made it possible for us to receive the Holy Spirit, and the Bible says, “…the love of God is shed abroad in our hearts by the Holy Ghost which is given unto us” (Romans 5:5). Love isn’t alien to us; it’s not an outside force; it’s our nature to love.
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Dear Heavenly Father, I thank you for your blessed Word and its power in my life. Thank you for your love-nature in me, which makes it natural for me to walk in love and manifest your love to others, in Jesus’ Name. Amen.
Further Study: John 15:12; Romans 13:10