Meditation: John 15:9-12
9“As the Father loved Me, I also have 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, that My joy may remain in you, and that your joy may be full. 12“This is My commandment, that you love one another as I have loved you.
It is extremely humbling when Christ compares the amount of love that He has for us to the amount of love that God has for Him. In John 15:9, after Jesus enlightens us to the extent of his love, He says, “Abide in My love.” The word “abide” that is used in this verse, comes from the Greek word, “meno,” which means to continue, dwell, endure, be present, remain, and stand. Why is it that Christians have such a hard time staying in the love of our Lord Jesus Christ? Do we forget the gift that we have received? Christ died for us! He has offered redemption from the ways of the world we live in. He has offered us an eternal place in Heaven at the foot of the throne of God. Christ has given us the opportunity to serve the King of kings and the Lord of lords!
How do we abide in Christ’s love? He gives us the answer in verse 10 – we must keep His commandments. In hearing this, I am reminded of Matthew 22:36-39. In verse 37, Jesus gives us the greatest commandment: “You shall love the LORD your God with all your heart, with all your soul, and with all your mind.” He goes on to say, “And the second is like it: You shall love your neighbor as yourself.” In order to abide in Christ’s love, we must keep his commandments.
How can we find fullness of joy through Christ? We must abide in Christ’s love. The Greek word for joy in this verse is “chara,” which means cheerfulness. Are we joyful and cheerful about our Christian lives and the work of Christ? If there is an evident, continuous lack of joy in someone’s life, chances are, they are not abiding in the love of Christ. As we see from this passage, if someone is not abiding in the love of Christ, they are not keeping His commandments.
We find a challenge in verse 12. Christ commands us to love other people like He loves us. This is something that is impossible with the Lord’s help. On our own, we are a selfish and unloving people. Only through the power of Christ Jesus, can we even strive to love others as He has loved us.