“Christ and the Rich Young Ruler” (detail) by Heinrich Hofmann / Public domain
By Deacon Michael Bickerstaff, Integrated Catholic, May 9, 2021
“As the Father has loved me, so have I loved you; abide in my love. 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. These things I have spoken to you, that my joy may be in you, and that your joy may be full. This is my commandment, that you love one another as I have loved you.” (John 15:9-12).
In John 15:12, Jesus tells his apostles, “This is my commandment, that you love one another as I have loved you.” In this passage, Jesus is preparing His Apostles for His departure and the coming of the Holy Spirit. After three long years with them, these are among His final words of instruction. These words must be important. Again, He tells them that if they love Him, they will keep His commandments. Earlier in His public ministry Jesus told a scribe that the greatest of the commandments is that we are to love God with all our heart, soul, mind and strength and that the second is that we are to love our neighbor as ourselves.
Now we would think that the Apostles understood this. They loved Jesus, they were trying to live good and holy lives. Yet He knew they still needed to learn to love as He does and so do we. Jesus makes it very simple… for them and for us, “love one another as I have loved you” (John 13:34). …
rchbishop Salvatore Cordileone of San Francisco and House Speaker Nancy Pelosi. (photo: Dennis Callahan, Archdiocese of San Francisco/Public domain. / Dennis Callahan, Archdiocese of San Francisco/Public domain.)