Today’s scripture includes our memory verse for the week, and takes us back into the Gospel of John. And context couldn’t be more important here. These verses comes from when Jesus was predicting Peter’s denial. Such contrast…A new commandment to love one another, and the denial of knowing someone he’d claim to love. Let’s begin today’s study.
Jesus Predicts Peter’s Denial
31 When he was gone, Jesus said, “Now the Son of Man is glorified and God is glorified in him. 32 If God is glorified in him, God will glorify the Son in himself, and will glorify him at once.
33 “My children, I will be with you only a little longer. You will look for me, and just as I told the Jews, so I tell you now: Where I am going, you cannot come.
34 “A new command I give you: Love one another. As I have loved you, so you must love one another. 35 By this everyone will know that you are my disciples, if you love one another.”
36 Simon Peter asked him, “Lord, where are you going?”
Jesus replied, “Where I am going, you cannot follow now, but you will follow later.”
37 Peter asked, “Lord, why can’t I follow you now? I will lay down my life for you.”
38 Then Jesus answered, “Will you really lay down your life for me? Very truly I tell you, before the rooster crows, you will disown me three times!
When I read the study notes, I was immediately brought back to God’s promise of making everything new again. For this was a new commandment…for them, but we can see how God took something old, and made it new again. Remember, to follow Christ, is to love, and if we love God, then we cannot hate.
13:34A new command. In a sense it was an old one (see Lev 19:18 and note), but for Christ’s disciples it was new, because it was the mark of their special bond, created by Christ’s great love for them (cf. Mt 22:37, 39; Mk 12:31; Lk 10:27 and notes). As I have loved you. Our standard is Christ’s love for us. (NIV Study Bible Notes)
Sometimes, we cannot just see things in the words, but rather in a visual. I see that visual from God four times a year…through our seasons. I’m fortunate enough to live where there are four very distinct seasons and each has it’s own beauty. And each brings something new, but nothing compares to Spring.
After a long, hard, cold, and dark winter, there came the delivery of the promise of making everything new again. Spring…the time when blooms and buds remind us of the beauty that comes from that dark cold winter. This year, it was that much darker and colder, and it took that much longer for all the newness to come about. But God’s promise still didn’t cease, for everything returned…and it was all made new again. It’s God symbol (visual) of His love.
Lord, Your love is seen in the seasons, and in the season, we see Your promises to make everything new again. Often, I look for a start and finish…but never something continuous in which this promise remains. The seasons that You’ve given us are a wonderful reminder of making things new, and Your constant love for us. From this visual, we can see You and see that love. Thank you for creating that bond with us, and for always reminding me of what true love is. In Jesus Name, I pray. Amen.