John 15: 9-17: Enjoying Jesus’ love.

“9 “As the Father has loved me, so have I loved you. Now remain in my love. 10 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. 11 I have told you this so that my joy may be in you and that your joy may be complete. 12 My command is this: Love each other as I have loved you. 13 Greater love has no one than this: to lay down one’s life for one’s friends. 14 You are my friends if you do what I command. 15 I no longer call you servants, because a servant does not know his master’s business. Instead, I have called you friends, for everything that I learned from my Father I have made known to you. 16 You did not choose me, but I chose you and appointed you so that you might go and bear fruit—fruit that will last—and so that whatever you ask in my name the Father will give you. 17 This is my command: Love each other.” NIV

At a superficial glance, it may appear that Jesus is saying that we can earn His love by being obedient to Him. However, the message in these verses is not about earning but enjoying. ‘The Message’ makes this clearer I think:

”Make yourselves at home in my love. If you keep my commands, you’ll remain intimately at home in my love.”

We cannot earn the love of Jesus by being obedient to His commands; but by such obedience we will enjoy the fullness of His love. Those who walk in disobedience to Him, who trample on their own consciences, will feel a distance in their relationship with Jesus. He still loves them, but they will fail to feel the warm sunshine of His love tanning their souls. We can’t live how we please and enjoy all that Jesus has for us.

A particular command is emphasised here:

”This is my command: Love one another the way I loved you. This is the very best way to love. Put your life on the line for your friends…

…remember the root command: Love one another.”

So many other commands of Jesus are contained in this one. When you boil it all down, the Christian life is about loving God and loving people.