In The Word
Read: John 15:9-25
9 Just as the Father has loved Me, I have also loved you; abide in My love. 10 If you keep My commandments, you will abide in My love; just as I have kept My Father’s commandments and abide in His love. 11 These things I have spoken to you so that My joy may be in you, and that your joy may be made full.
Disciples’ Relation to Each Other
12 “This is My commandment, that you love one another, just as I have loved you.13 Greater love has no one than this, that one lay down his life for his friends.14 You are My friends if you do what I command you. 15 No longer do I call you slaves, for the slave does not know what his master is doing; but I have called you friends, for all things that I have heard from My Father I have made known to you.16 You did not choose Me but I chose you, and appointed you that you would go and bear fruit, and that your fruit would remain, so that whatever you ask of the Father in My name He may give to you. 17 This I command you, that you love one another.
Disciples’ Relation to the World
18 “If the world hates you, you know that it has hated Me before it hated you. 19 If you were of the world, the world would love its own; but because you are not of the world, but I chose you out of the world, because of this the world hates you.20 Remember the word that I said to you, ‘A slave is not greater than his master.’ If they persecuted Me, they will also persecute you; if they kept My word, they will keep yours also. 21 But all these things they will do to you for My name’s sake, because they do not know the One who sent Me. 22 If I had not come and spoken to them, they would not have sin, but now they have no excuse for their sin. 23 He who hates Me hates My Father also. 24 If I had not done among them the works which no one else did, they would not have sin; but now they have both seen and hated Me and My Father as well. 25 But they have done this to fulfill the word that is written in their Law, ‘They hated Me without a cause.’
New American Standard Bible (NASB) Copyright © 1960, 1962, 1963, 1968, 1971, 1972, 1973, 1975, 1977, 1995 by The Lockman Foundation
Walking In The Word
Love is easy to talk about, but sometimes hard to apply, especially to ourselves. In today’s passage, Jesus shares a vital truth meant to help us more deeply accept the love of God: we are His friends. We are not slaves serving an overlord or pagans worshiping a distant god. We are Jesus’ confidants and trusted allies because of His love for us and His selection of us. Most people, even many Christians, feel as though they spend their entire spiritual lives on the outside looking in. This is not the will of God for His beloved friends.
We must embrace this indescribable love of God. As we live in His love, we will find our joy is complete, our ministry is dynamic, and our relationships are both profound and lasting. We will not be like those whom the Lord did not select, who hated Him, hated the Father, and were sure to hate the disciples as well. We will not be on the outside looking in because we do not know God. We will be on the inside pouring out, because He has called us “friends”. The world will certainly hate us, but Jesus has already overcome the world (John 16:33), and declared us His brothers (Romans 8), His ambassadors (2 Corinthians 5:22), and His beloved friends.