John 15-16

“If you keep my commands, you will remain in My love, just as I have kept My Father’s commands and remain in His love. I have told you this so that My joy may be in you and that your joy may be complete. My command is this: Love each other as I have loved you. Greater love has no one than this: to lay down one’s life for one’s friends.” (15:10-13)

This passage is a glorious portrait of perfect love giving way to joy, honor and unity. 

One of the greatest mysteries in theology (indeed it is the primary point of concern for our Muslim brothers and sisters) is the one-ness and three-ness of God the Father, Son and Holy Spirit. These chapters weave us our best explanation, and I always come out feeling like I just got a really intensely perfect group hug.

I love that the name Jesus gives the Holy Spirit is Advocate. We don’t deserve one, but we desperately need one. In an unexpected twist, the One who has the power to send us to hell, is also the One who paid our death sentence, and the One who defends us. 

The God of Abraham came to us, humbly as a man, and showed us how to live. In all the chaos of Israel’s failure to be a holy people, chosen to bless the nations, you can almost hear a tired, collective moan, crying, “Let’s see you do it”. Now here, before 12 men, stands Jesus: the perfect God, clothed in humanity about to accomplish what we could never do. 

What’s more is His assertion, the Holy Spirit coming at His departing, is better than His staying. Now the God of Abraham dwells, not in a building, but in the temple-bodies of His sanctified people. 

The Great I AM the Father, the Great I AM the Son, and the Great I AM the Spirit. 

Abide in this love. Live here. Soak it in, as a branch soaks up nutrients from a vine. Don’t worry about bearing fruit, because making fruit is all the work of God, through us, as we live in this glorious love we’ve so graciously been invited into. 

Let’s keep our eyes on Him. Let’s remind ourselves, every minute of every day, to exist in this love. The command The Great I AM gives us is LOVE. What a magnificent call of duty. Read and re-read this passage. It’s a good one to frequent. 

I am called a friend of God, the Great I AM.

-Bethany

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