One of the major themes in the Bible is love. The word is mentioned a number of times in the Old Testament. Jesus however, condensed the entire law and all the demands of the prophets to two sentences. Both are based on love. By the time John wrote his second epistle, the commandment to love was nothing new.
I am writing to remind you, dear friends, that we should love one another. This is not a new commandment, but one we have had from the beginning. Love means doing what God has commanded us, and he has commanded us to love one another, just as you heard from the beginning. 2 John 1:5-6
John reminded his readers that the bottom line in serving the Lord was love. He told them that loving is not a new commandment. It was though at one time. John recorded in his gospel what Jesus said on this matter,
So now I am giving you a new commandment: Love each other. Just as I have loved you, you should love each other. Your love for one another will prove to the world that you are my disciples. John 13:34-35
Let Us Continue to Love
In his first epistle, John wrote: Dear friends, let us continue to love one another, for love comes from God. Anyone who loves is a child of God and knows God. But anyone who does not love does not know God, for God is love. 1 John 4:7-8
As he moved along with this love theme, there is a moral to this story: If you can’t love each other, then you can’t love God. That is a hard pill for some people to swallow. Many feel it is much easier to love God than to love some people. But according to John, that’s an invalid argument.
There is nowhere that says that we have the option of not loving someone. Even if we consider them unlovable. In 1 Corinthian 13, it mentions the qualities of love. One of the things it isn’t is conditional. Are we capable of loving unconditionally as described in that chapter? Probably not in this life. But it is a goal we can work toward.
Read a related post on 1 Corinthians 13 called, How Can Love Be Always and Never?
John was with Jesus at the very beginning of His ministry. Because of the emphasis Jesus put on love, John wrote about it in each of his biblical writings. He let his readers know that the commandment to love was nothing new. John was convinced that loving one another was the most important way to live.
Lord, thank you for loving us unconditionally. Help us to love others the same way that you love us.
Look up 2 John 1 to get the complete picture.
Featured Image Photo by Tyler Nix at Unsplash
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