9“I have loved you even as the Father has loved me. Remain in my alove.10When you obey my commandments, you remain in my love, just as I obey my Father’s commandments and remain in his love.11I have told you these things so that you will be filled with my joy. Yes, your joy will overflow!12This is my commandment: Love each other in the same way I have loved you.13There is no greater blove than to lay down one’s life for one’s friends. 14You are my friends if you do what I command.15I no longer call you cslaves, because a master doesn’t confide in his cslaves. Now you are my friends, since I have told you everything the Father told me.16You didn’t choose me. I chose you. I appointed you to go and produce lasting fruit, so that the Father will give you whatever you ask for, using my name.17This is my command: Love each other.
“Now you are my friends, since I have told you everything the Father told me.” That sentence just sticks out so much. How could Jesus possibly have told the disciples, or me for that matter, everything the Father had told him? It doesn’t make any sense at all…until you careful put it back in the entire paragraph.
This reading is all about loving God and loving each other. We are encouraged to lay down our life for others. That doesn’t mean dying for no reason, that means living a life of service to others. The whole paragraph revolves around what Jesus had earlier said was the greatest of all the laws “Love God with your whole heart, your whole mind, your whole soul and all your strength. And love your neighbor as yourself. The entire law and the prophets can be summed up in this.”
Is is starting to make sense? Everything about God, Jesus, and us is all about loving God and loving others. When we love and serve we are obeying Jesus’ command and we are one with him, and one with the Father, and we “will be filled with my joy. Yes, your joy will overflow!”
Lord, help me to completely die to my own desires and my own needs and to live only to serve others and to serve you in complete and total love. Change me Lord Jesus, change me. *obbs*