Love One Another

1John 3:11-14 For this is the message that you heard from the beginning, that we should love one another. Not as Cain, who was of that wicked one, and slew his brother. And wherefore slew he him? Because his own works were evil, and his brother’s righteous. Marvel not, my brethren, if the world hates you. We know that we have passed from death unto life, because we love the brethren. He that loves not his brother abides in death. 

‘Message’ the Greek word angelia meaning proclamation; commandment and order.

‘From the beginning’ there are ten things concerning Jesus Christ that the disciples heard from the beginning: He is from the beginning (1:1; John 1:1-2); from everlasting (Micah 5:1-2; Heb. 1:8); they [the disciples] have heard Him with their ears (1:1), so can we when we read the Word (Rom. 10:17; Php. 1:9); they [the disciples] have seen Him with their eyes (1:1); their [disciples] hands have handled Him (1:1); He is the Word of Life (1:1; John 14:6); they [disciples] bear witness of this Life (1:2); He is that eternal Life (1:2); He is not the Father, but was with Him from all eternity (1:2; John 1:1-2); He was manifested to them [disciples] (1:2); they [disciples] declare Him to us for two reasons: (1) That we may have fellowship with them, with the Father, and with His Son, Jesus Christ (1:3); (2) That our joy may be full (1:4).

‘This is my commandment, that you love one another, as I have loved you.’ Christ’s commandment to us is the same as His Father’s commandment to Him. We must love one another to the extent that He loves us. He laid down His life for us; we must lay down our lives for each other.

‘Cain’ he was of satan (Gen. 4:1-26). ‘Slew’ the Greek word sphazo meaning put to death by violence. ‘Because his own works were evil, and his brother’s righteous’ Abel was a better man and more righteous than Cain. This is often the excuse of enmity (Gen. 4:1-26; Heb. 11:4).

‘Marvel not, my brethren, if the world hate you’ Expect no better treatment from the world than Abel received from Cain.

‘We know that we have passed from death unto life’ There are many things given to us in 1John that we know: That we know Him (2:3) and can then be in (union) Him (2:5) and He abides in us (3:24). We know all things of truth and are of the truth (2:20, 213:19) and that no lie is of the truth (2:21). Everyone that does righteousness is born of God (2:29). When He shall appear, we shall be like Him (3:2). He was manifested to take away our sins, and in Him is no sin (3:5). We have passed from death unto life because we love the brethren (3:14; 5:2). No murderer or hater of people has eternal life (3:15). We have the Spirit of God (4:2, 13) and we know the difference between the Spirit of truth and the Spirit of error (4:6). That we dwell in Him and He in us – again in union (of the same mind – 4:13). We have eternal life (5:13) and whosoever is born of God do not sin (5:18). The Son of God has come, and has given us an understanding, that we may know Him that is true; and can be in Him (5:20). NOTE: if any of these points mentioned are not true in your life, seek God in all earnest, don’t just declare yourself saved as so many do today and yet have not the fruit of repentance (Matt. 3:8; Luke 3:8).

A New Commandment

John 13:31-35 Therefore, when he was gone out, Jesus said, Now is the Son of man glorified, and God is glorified in him. If God be glorified in him, God shall also glorify him in himself, and shall straightway glorify him. Little children, yet a little while I am with you. You shall seek me: and as I said unto the Jews, Whither I go, you cannot come; so now I say to you. 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. 

The 29th New Testament prophecy in John that is fulfilled: Jesus said that He was glorified by being appointed to save the world and the Father is glorified in Him saving the world. The Father and Jesus are glorified together in seeing Their ruined work redeemed and restored.

Jesus warned that He was there with them for only a short time and then they will seek Him, but cannot follow where He goes. Jesus was with them for one more day before the crucifixion, and He remained dead for 3 whole days. Then they could see Him for 40 more days and no more after that (Mat. 12:40; Acts 1:3, 11). He said this to the Jews (John 7:34; 8:21), and to His disciples: when He did finally go they cannot follow Him, but He will come back for them at a later time (John14:1-3).

‘New’ the Greek word kainos meaning renewed. This is the same as the old commandment in Leviticus 19:18, “Thou shall love thy neighbour as thyself.” The renewed commandment here has an additional part, “as I have loved you.” Christ more than fulfilled the Mosaic precept. He not only loved His neighbour as Himself, but He loved him more than Himself, for He laid down His own life for others. In this, He called upon His disciples to follow Him: to be ready on all occasions to lay down their lives for each other and for enemies, if it would save them from hell (Rom. 5:8-11). This surpassed by far the moral systems of all religions. No system ever prescribed anything so pure and unselfish.

Christ explained to them, that they have been ambitious, envious, and at strife for supremacy. This cannot be. They must love as He loves. By this shall all people know them to be Christians. Disciples of different teachers were known by their habits, or some particular creed or rite; but the Disciples of Christ were to be known by the love they had for one another (1Jn. 3:11-18; 4:7-21).