May 23 - Love to the End
Jesus was demonstrating His love to the disciples during the Last Supper. This love for His own in the world was a love that would go all the way to the end. It was a persistent, never fading, always there and not affected by the circumstances. Most human love is temporary and conditional but the love of Jesus is unconditional and goes to the end, through thick and thin. He demonstrated this love by washing the feet of His disciples along with the teachings He gave at the table.
This love is to love despite of betrayal. During the supper, the devil had already put the idea of betrayal into the heart of one of the disciples, Judas Iscariot. Jesus knew about it and before Judas left the table to do his own thing, Jesus gave him several warnings in the hope of restoring him. He quoted from the Scripture about the one who ate His bread had lifted his heel against Him. Then He clearly said that one of them was to betray Him for not all of them were clean. When the disciples wondered on who that disciple was, Jesus gave the dipped morsel of bread to Judas. As He took of it, Satan entered him. This is the love to the end, loving the one who betrays you and hope for their repentance. Love is kind.
This love is to love despite of refusal. When Jesus wanted to wash Simon Peter’s feet, he said, “You shall never wash my feet.” Love can be rejected, not everyone can love or receive love. Sometimes our love is so shallow and conditional that when rejected, we gladly withdraw our love. Not so with Jesus, He persisted, explaining to Simon Peter the import of His action and eventually, Simon Peter accepted His washing. The rejection was turned into acceptance after the Lord’s patience in His explanation. Love is patient.
Love to the end is a love that serves by example. Jesus, as their teacher, set an example for the students by washing their feet. He did not demand them to do so, He did not teach them by mere words, He taught them by doing. After the washing, He then taught them to do it to each other. This is love to the end, going all the way by doing it first. This is the key to impartation and Jesus did something first before He taught others.
The love that Jesus demonstrated is unconditional love, it is love despite of, not love because of. It is the taking of initiative, to do it first and its giving does not depend on the one loved. This is the love of God, loving His children despite of betrayal, refusal and denial. This is love to the end and Jesus taught this at the end of His ministry. This is a good time for you to evaluate the love that you have for others. Is it love to the end or is it love of the half way or part of the way? Is your love pending on the response of the one you love? Ask Jesus to give you His love now.
Ps 72:1-7 2 Sam 2:12-3:39 John 13:1-30 Prov 15:29-30