Sunday, July 19, 2009
John 13:18 "I am not saying these things to all of you; I know the ones I have chosen. But this fulfills the Scripture that says, 'The one who eats my food has turned against me.' 19 I tell you this beforehand, so that when it happens you will believe that I AM the Messiah. 20 I tell you the truth, anyone who welcomes my messenger is welcoming me, and anyone who welcomes me is welcoming the Father who sent me."
21 Now Jesus was deeply troubled, and he exclaimed, "I tell you the truth, one of you will betray me!" 22 The disciples looked at each other, wondering whom he could mean. 23 The disciple Jesus loved was sitting next to Jesus at the table. 24 Simon Peter motioned to him to ask, "Who's he talking about?" 25 So that disciple leaned over to Jesus and asked, "Lord, who is it?"
26 Jesus responded, "It is the one to whom I give the bread I dip in the bowl." And when he had dipped it, he gave it to Judas, son of Simon Iscariot. 27 When Judas had eaten the bread, Satan entered into him. Then Jesus told him, "Hurry and do what you're going to do." 28 None of the others at the table knew what Jesus meant. 29 Since Judas was their treasurer, some thought Jesus was telling him to go and pay for the food or to give some money to the poor. 30 So Judas left at once, going out into the night.
31 As soon as Judas left the room, Jesus said, "The time has come for the Son of Man to enter into his glory, and God will be glorified because of him. 32 And since God receives glory because of the Son, he will soon give glory to the Son. 33 Dear children, I will be with you only a little longer. And as I told the Jewish leaders, you will search for me, but you can't come where I am going. 34 So now I am giving you a new commandment: Love each other. Just as I have loved you, you should love each other. 35 Your love for one another will prove to the world that you are my disciples."
36 Simon Peter asked, "Lord, where are you going?" And Jesus replied, "You can't go with me now, but you will follow me later." 37 "But why can't I come now, Lord?" he asked. "I'm ready to die for you." 38 Jesus answered, "Die for me? I tell you the truth, Peter—before the rooster crows tomorrow morning, you will deny three times that you even know me.
Jesus told the group of disciples that one of them will betray him, yet another of hundreds of prophecies that were fulfilled by Jesus, he made sure to tell them what the prophets had already said so that when it came true their wouldn't be any doubt that Jesus is the Messiah.
Here is a new commandment, well actually it's a familiar old command that is going to go an extra step further, Jesus said that he wants them to love each other to the same extent that Jesus loved each of them. You see the love that the Father and the Son share, Jesus bringing glory to the Father and in return God giving his glory back to Jesus, they are always looking out for each other and displaying their love for each other.
What an enormous amount of love that we are supposed to have for one another! Christ said that just as much love as he has shown to me, I am supposed to have for everybody else, I am supposed to love just as much as Jesus loved me. He loved me enough to leave the glory of heaven and step down to this earth where he would be mistreated worse than I will ever be treated and he still showed his love to me even though I was living in rebellion. There is no better proof that we are Jesus disciples than for us to love him and each other with agape love. What would our churches look like if we had that kind of atmosphere for the world to walk into?
I need to be careful not to follow the example of this world, it is easier for all of us to look out for our own interest, but Jesus gave us the ultimate example of giving our lives away and he told me to do the same.
I am more like Peter than I care to admit, how many times in my life have I been a traitor and turned to my own way and taken care of my own interest, it reminds me of the song by Kutless called Traitor:
With my two lips I will praise your name
Then I turn around and only curse and blame
I give in, strength is thin, adding to my shame
Your blood it covered all my sin
You changed a traitor into kin
In this false life something needs to give
Tell me a reason why this isn't treason
Tell me, tell me I'm wrong
I swear I'm back but then it turns out it's only a season
So tell me, tell me I'm wrong
Thank you Lord for your love that I didn't have to earn, you loved me in spite of who I am and how I have treated you, help me to love as you loved me.