“A new commandment I give you: Love one another. As I have loved you, so you must love one another. By this all men will know that you are my disciples, if you love one another.” John 13:34-35
The above verses were quoted by Jesus at the Last Supper. It was there after washing the disciples’ feet and prior to his crucifixion that he laid down the principle that was to become the church’s guide in developing relationships and reaching a lost world. This was a new command one that when obeyed would change the world. We are going to look at this command in detail this week.
MONDAY: A NEW COMMAND
1. Compare Leviticus 19:18 with John 13:34. What difference made Jesus’ command new?
2. Read Romans 5:6-10. What words describe our situation when Jesus died for us? How would you describe Christ’s love for you in these verses? 3. If we are to love each other like Jesus loves us, then what attitudes and actions, according to these verses, do you need to change in your relationship with others?
FAITH STEP: Begin memorizing John 13:34-35. Write it on a card and take it with you this week.
TUESDAY: THE EXAMPLE OF CHRIST’S LOVE
1. Read John 13:1-13. What example of love does Jesus leave for us? How would you have felt if you were Peter? Judas? John?
2. Read Philippians 2:5-7. How did Jesus “make himself nothing”? In what relationships do we need to “make ourselves nothing”? What do you think “makes yourselves nothing” means?
FAITH STEP: As a family or a LIFE group do you have enough faith to literally wash someone’s feet? What did you learn about yourself? Jesus?
WEDNESDAY: THE MEANING OF CHRIST’S LOVE
1. What issues were the disciples concerned about as Jesus was preparing them for his death? (Luke 22:24; Mark 10:35-45)
2. Why did Jesus wash the disciples feet (John 13:15)? This action had to be a shock to the disciples. Jesus’ action threatened them, convicted them of their selfish pride and violated their cultural tradition. Their relationship with each other had been a competition for position as they attempted to outdo and control one another. Jesus came along and said love one another by serving one another.
3. Read John 15:12-13. How does Jesus describe great love?
FAITH STEP: Write down five things you have done in the past two weeks that demonstrated Christ’s love to someone else. Ask God to help you look at people, interruptions and problems as opportunities to reflect Christ’s love by serving others.
THURSDAY: LETTING THE WORLD KNOW
1. According to John 13:35 how will the lost world recognize followers of Jesus?
This is a awesome responsibility because by this command Jesus is saying that he is choosing to show the world his love through the way his people treat each other. Our first step in evangelism is to love each other like Jesus loves us.
2. After reading the following Scriptures write down one thing from each passage that shows how we are to love each other. (Romans 12:10, I Peter 4:8, Ephesians 4:2, I Corinthians 13:4-7)
FAITH STEP: Review the qualities you listed from the Scriptures above. Rank them in order with one being the quality your are best at showing and the last one being the quality where you need to show the most improvement. What does your actions and words say to the world about your love for ALL your fellow Christians?
FRIDAY: LOVING ONE ANOTHER
1. "Love" is an action word. It is seen in our attitudes and actions toward one another. Today we are going to look at some one another verses that the world can observe and see the love we have for each other.
2. Read the following Scriptures, write down the command and then write beside it a name of someone you need to love by fulfilling that command. (Romans 12:10b, Romans 15:7, Galatians 5:13, Galatians 6:2, Ephesians 5:21, Colossians 3:13, I Thessalonians 5:11, I Peter 4:9)
FAITH STEP: Pick one of the names you wrote down and this week do something to fulfill that command towards that individual.
SATURDAY: LOVING ONE ANOTHER AS A FAMILY
Locate your role(s) and rate yourself after reading the Scripture 1 to 5 with “one” being I never do that and “five” being usually.
HUSBANDS: (Ephesians’ 5:1-2, Ephesians 5:25, I Peter 3:7, Ephesians 5:21, I Corinthians 7:4, 5, Philippians 2:4, 7)
WIVES: Ephesians 5:1-2, Ephesians 5:22, I Corinthians 7:4, 5, I Peter 3:4 Philippians 2:4, 7)
PARENTS: Colossians 3:21, I Thessalonians 2:11-12, Ephesians 6:4, Deuteronomy 6:6-7)
CHILDREN: Ephesians 6:1, Ephesians 6:2, Proverbs 23:22, Leviticus 19:32, Proverbs 20:20)