Bible Studies for Life Lesson for August 7- Love One Another
July 21 2011 by Catherine Painter, author, speaker from Raleigh

Focal Passages: John 13:4-35; 1 John 3:10b-12, 16-18; 4:7-13, 19

In the upper room on the night He was betrayed, Jesus opened His heart more fully to His disciples than ever before. They leaned forward, intent upon hearing His every word. He called them His children (John 13:33), and like a parent consoling a child, explained that everything would be all right, and that God would be glorified through His death.

The disciples were anxious like children being torn from their parent, wishing to go along but being told they could not go (v. 33b).

To comfort them, Jesus said in effect, “This is how you can help one another when I am gone: I give you a new commandment: Just as I have loved you, you must also love one another. By this all people will know that you are My disciples, if you have love for one another” (v. 34-35).

Jesus did not require miracles, prophecies, or anything else as a prerequisite for discipleship.

Love alone would distinguish them as Christians (little Christs) after He was gone, and the future of the Church hinged upon their love for one another.

Would they pass the test? History proves they did, for the early Church flourished and grew like wildfire. You and I are beneficiaries of the love that passed down to us as testimony of how the disciples excelled, so that observers commented, “How those Christians love one another!”

Are you blessed to belong to a church known for its love? If not, seek ways to help it become such a church.

Nothing grieves God’s heart more than to see professing Christians eating each other up with bitter words and unkind deeds.

A teacher once asked his students how they could tell when night ends and day begins.

“Could it be,” one student suggested, “when you see an animal at a distance and know whether it is a sheep or a dog?”

“No,” replied the teacher.

“Could it be,” said another, “when you see a tree in the distance and tell whether it is an apple tree or a peach tree?”

“No,” the teacher said. “It’s when you look at any man or woman and see that person as your brother or sister; because, until you do this, regardless of what time it is, it will still be night.”

If you and I are to touch the world for Jesus, it will be through loving as Jesus loved and doing whatever we can to ensure the happiness and well-being of others.
7/21/2011 5:57:00 AM by Catherine Painter, author, speaker from Raleigh | with 0 comments

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