The Palestine Herald, Palestine, Texas

Opinion

April 26, 2014

INSTANT MESSAGE: Jesus gives new command

John 13: 24-25 (NIV): 34 "A new command I give you: Love one another. As I have loved you, so you must love one another. 35 By this all men will know that you are my disciples, if you love one another."

It was just hours before Jesus was betrayed and arrested. Hours before he would be whipped and beaten and nailed to a cross. Hours before he became sin for us, paid the price for it, dying in agony. Jesus had just washed his disciples' feet -- even Judas' feet. In a little while Judas would betray him and the disciples would run scared into the night. Peter would deny three times that he knew him.

Then Jesus pronounced a new command. You could call this the Eleventh Commandment. Jesus was elevating us loving each other to the status of being equal to the Ten Commandments. It's not that the command for us to love each other was new. God had already told the Israelites to love each other as they loved themselves (Leviticus 19:18). But Jesus was putting love at the top of what we should do as Christians to show the world who we are. And they were about to understand what loving each other really meant. Love involves sacrifice. Showing true love for someone costs you. Moments later, Jesus would say, "greater love has no one than this, that he lay down his life for his friends." (John 15:13).

   Now we understand what it means to love each other. When Jesus washed his disciples feet, he showed that love is humble, that love is a servant, and that love forgives. He knew full well that they were all about to let him down.

   The first word in the Catholic Holy Thursday liturgy is "Mandatum", which is Latin for mandate or command. This is where the term "Maundy" comes from. Many Christians recognize Maundy Thursday as the day Jesus washed his disciples' feet and issued a new command, that we love one another as he loved us.

Because the disciples showed true, sacrificial love for one another, Christianity soon conquered Rome and is on its way to overtaking the whole world. But it will only do so if we continue to follow Jesus' command and love one another as he has loved us.

————

Autographed copies of Craig's fiction novel “The Dead Peasants File” are for sale at Blaser's Books in downtown Palestine. Harris is the pastor at Brushy Creek and Mt. Vernon United Methodist churches.

1
Text Only
Opinion
  • 7-26-simon-slaw.jpg Cooking with Simon: Stomp grapes and eat Texas food

    If you’re picking up the newspaper on Saturday, you still have a chance to come out to Sabor a Pasion and celebrate the grape harvest at the 2nd Annual Charity Grape Stomp.

    July 26, 2014 2 Photos

  • Two decades of storytelling

    For the past 20 years, I have covered everything under the sun while working as community editor at the Palestine Herald-Press. I have covered festivals, banquets, graduations, fires, wrecks, elections, giant vegetables, you name it, I probably wrote about it.

    July 26, 2014

  • At the Movies: 'Begin Again' — Fresh tale creates appeal

    Some people film big pictures.  Others do small pictures.  Writer-director John Carney makes small pictures. 

    July 26, 2014

  • IMG_1373.jpeg COOKING WITH SIMON: Summer produce brings recipe inspiration

    Chefs are always recreating their menus and finding new inspiration for recipes. People ask me how where my new ideas come from and what I do to get inspired. The answer – mowing the lawn – and, by the way, I have a lot of lawn, vineyard and fields to mow.

    July 19, 2014 3 Photos

  • Swiss Chard  & Peach Salad COOKING WITH SIMON: Garden vegetables ready to harvest

    Last month, I was invited to cook for a group of clients at a fishing lodge in Alaska. It was quite an experience – beautiful scenery, amazing salmon, halibut, and great accessibility to some of the best fishing in the world.

    July 12, 2014 1 Photo

  • watermelon COOKING WITH SIMON: Red, white and watermelon

    Happy 4th of July weekend! On every street corner the fruit of Texas is being sold from the back of old trucks and roadside produce stands.

    July 5, 2014 1 Photo

  • COLUMN: Musings about life and the pursuit of happiness

    Yesterday was July 4th, a time we celebrate independence and the truths that all men are created equal and “endowed by their Creator with certain unalienable rights,” to quote Mr. Jefferson.

    July 5, 2014

  • MOVIE REVIEW: 22 Jump Street

    I should have known better.  Just like “Legally Blonde” and “Dumb and Dumber,” a comedy based on a premise as opposed to one based on truly funny characters merged with a clever situation should never have a sequel.

    July 3, 2014

  • 6-28--SIMON-Lamb-Sliders.jpg Cooking with Simon: Celebrate July 4th with lamb burgers

    Being born in one country and raised in another can bring a bit of confusion to one’s life. And then to find yourself living in a third country as an adult, is one reason this kiwi is all messed up.

    June 28, 2014 1 Photo

  • Editor's Notebook: Kids can create their own summer fun

    Things are so different today than when I was a kid. A recent conversation with my 9-year-old son reinforced my belief.

    June 28, 2014