"The 11th Commandment"
BIBLE READING: Exodus 19-21
Ever since I was a little boy in Sunday School, I can remember my teachers drilling into my head the 10 Commandments. If my teacher were so intent on me knowing these commandments from God, just think how intent the Jews were on teaching their children. This was, and still is for the Jews, their covenant with God. I bet you could randomly pull a Jewish child out of a crowd and they would be able to recite to you the recording of the Ten Commandments in Exodus 20. Understand, for the Jews it was essential to know and understand these commandments. This is why Jesus’ comments are so peculiar at the Last Supper; “A new commandment I give to you...” (John 13:34a). They must have misheard Him, because everyone knows that there are only Ten Commandments and He just said there was a new one? Now that Jesus has their attention for the final instructions, before He leaves for the cross, He further elaborates “A new commandment I give to you, that you love one another: just as I have loved you, you also are to love one another.” (John 13:34). Jesus wanted them to understand that this was not only a commandment, it was a distinction. Jesus continues, “By this all people will know that you are my disciples, if you have love for one another." (John 13:35). Up to this point in time there have been several people whom have claimed to be the Messiah, yet when they died, their movement ceased. Jesus wants them to know that the love they have for each other will compel them to continue His work until He returns. The same is true for us today; the love that we have for Jesus and each other still compels us to continue His ministry of seeking and saving that which is lost (Luke 17:10). Today, make sure you express that love because we all know people don’t care how much you know, until they know how much you care.