A New Commandment

John 13:34-35: “A new commandment I give unto you, That you love one another; as I have loved you, that you also love one another. By this shall all men know that you are My disciples, if you have love one to another.”

A new commandment: The newness of this commandment is in the ability in which disciples of Jesus will be able to love each other. It involves the new capacity of the followers of Jesus to love in a depth and to a degree that has not been possible before.

That you love one another: We are to love one another as Jesus has loved us. We can do this “because the love of God is shed abroad in our hearts by the Holy Spirit which is given unto us” (Romans 5:5). With the presence of the Holy Spirit dwelling within us we also have the fruit of the Spirit and a part of this fruit of the Spirit is love. The Holy Spirit can manifest this fruit in our lives and we are enabled to love with God’s love. We can be “rooted and grounded in love, understanding the breadth, and length, and depth, and height of the love of Christ which passes knowledge” (Ephesians 3:17-19).

By this shall men know that you are my disciples: “Let us not love in word, neither in tongue; but in deed and in truth” (1 John 3:18). When others see the manifestation of God’s love exhibited in our lives then they will know that we are disciples of Christ. We have heard the saying, “What you do speaks louder than what you say”. This love of God shed abroad in our hearts and shared with each other in acts of kindness, compassion, and mercy could be a greater witness than our verbal witness.