John 13:31-35 – When he had gone out, Jesus said, “Now the Son of Man has been glorified, and God has been glorified in him. If God has been glorified in him, God will also glorify him in himself, and he will glorify him immediately. Little children, I will be with you a little while longer. You will seek me, and as I said to the Jews, ‘Where I am going, you can’t come,’ so now I tell you. A new commandment I give to you, that you love one another, just like I have loved you; that you also love one another. By this everyone will know that you are my disciples, if you have love for one another.”
Jesus, now lays down a new world order. This moment is so critical, it is difficult to emphasize it enough. The Ten commandments came with terror. The One Commandment was spoken in such a way that it was addressed to “Little children.”
“love one another, just like I have loved you” – Jesus
There are some interesting things about the timing that this commandment was given. Judas had left and it was only spoken to those who were “clean” as Jesus mentioned earlier. This commandment actually creates a new world order, however, because it comes with a statement that: “By this everyone will know that you are my disciples.” This means that, even though the new rule was spoken only to believers, it would affect those outside.
Judas was now out with everyone, as were the Jews and all of those who were not in the room. Jesus said that the way people will really know that we are Christians is by our love for each other. There have been many attempted substitutes for love throughout the life of the church during this world order.
Not too many hundreds of years ago, men thought that relics would show that they were from Jesus, so they killed each other to obtain them while they lived in a “dark age.”
In recent the past, it was thought that it would be by scriptural accuracy that people would be attracted to God. Although scriptural accuracy is extremely important, it only serves to uphold and define love. It cannot be treated as a replacement. We must do it, not just preach it.
We can see, now, that this failed as people observed the lack of love for each other in our churches. Now, it is popular to be “tolerant” and allow just about everything into the “church.” This will fail as well when people realize that we lie to and betray each other like Judas in the name of tolerance when we don’t show each other where the right path is and, instead, allow each other to fall into needless sin and suffering.
The world will have this ability to know a disciple when they see one, and we read here that it will be when they see us really loving each other. Let’s remember that love continues to be our new world order and not let anything replace it. (To learn more about love, see 1 Corinthians 13, the love chapter.)