You enjoy, when you do someone good. Why ? Is that just why, that you deserve heaven ? Is this what Christian love is all about ?
Jesus Christ teaches about the law of love
Already in the law of the Old Covenant, God called his chosen people to love. You will love your God with all your heart, with all my soul, with all his strength " (Pwt 6, 5).
…you will love your neighbor as yourself " (Lt. 19, 18).
The nation chosen by carrying out these commands was to bear witness to other nations, how to love God and other people.
However, many Israelites perverted the Law of the Covenant and were careful, that they love God, when they worship Him only externally. They considered the members of their nation as their neighbors. That is why God teaches the chosen people through the prophets, that God's true love should live in the human heart. He also calls him to love his neighbor, which should apply to all people. When Jesus Christ preached God's Kingdom foretold through the prophets and instructed people about its laws, one of the scholars asked him :
"Teacher, which is the greatest commandment in the law ? He answered him : «You will love the Lord your God with all your heart, with all your soul and all your mind. This is the greatest and first commandment. The second is similar to him : you will love your neighbor as yourself. All the Law and the Prophets rest on these two commandments »" (Mt 22, 36-40).
With these words, Jesus Christ confirmed, that the law of love for God and neighbor is the fundamental law of the covenant. It contains the entire Decalogue (By. Mt 19, 16-19). And when someone else asked Him, what must be done, to gain eternal life, Christ replied, that these very commandments are to be followed (By. Luke 10, 25-28). Thus he instructed us, that in the kingdom of God, the fundamental law is the law of love for God and neighbor. These two commandments are so related to each other, that they cannot be separated. And this is how St.. John the Apostle. He writes :
"If anyone spoke : "I love God", and he hated his brother, is a liar, for whoever does not love his brother, whom he sees, he cannot love God, which he does not see " (1 J 4, 20). Jesus also taught, that the commandment to love our neighbor covers all people, even enemies, whom the Israelites did not consider their neighbors.
„…And I tell you : Love your enemies and pray for them, who persecute you ; so you will be sons of your Father, who is in heaven…” (Mt 5, 44-45).
In this way, Christ explained the law of love in the Old Covenant, but he is asking us for more.
Jesus Christ announces the new law of love
Jesus did not announce the new law of love until the Last Supper, on the eve of his Passion.
Jesus knowing, that his hour had come to pass from this world to the Father, having loved their own in the world, he loved them to the end. During the supper… having taken a sheet of it, he girded himself around him. Then he poured water into the basin. And he began washing the disciples' feet and wiping them with the sheet, which he was girded with… And when he washed their feet, he put on his robes and took his place again at the table, he said to them : «Do you understand, what have I done to you ? You call me the Teacher ,Mr. 'and you say it well, bo – him I am. So if I, Lord and Teacher, I washed your feet, you should wash each other's feet. For I have given you an example, that you also should do so, as I have done for you… I give you a new commandment, that you love one another so, as I have loved you ; that you also love one another. Everyone will know by that, you are my disciples, if you love one another »" (J 13, 1. 4-5. 12-15. 34-35).
No one has greater love than this, when someone lays down his life for his friends " (J 15, 13).
While washing the feet of the disciples, Jesus Christ presented himself as this, which serves people. It was not just an example of humility. It was also the announcement of his death on the cross for the salvation of people. Through his suffering death, Jesus Christ served God and people the most. It was then that God's great love for man was fully revealed, because the Son of God died for people. Jesus Christ was also human. By his obedience to the Father until his death on the cross, he fulfilled his will and thus showed him his great love. Christ's love for his Father and for people is for us an example of the most perfect love. We are to learn from Jesus, how to love the God of people.
The new law of love, which Christ announced, it is then to love others as he loves us. This law was already taught by Jesus during the Last Supper, he filled them on the cross, and today he teaches us and fulfills it at the Holy Sacrifice. He gives himself up for people, and from us he demands mutual love. Therefore, during the Holy Mass, before Holy Communion, The church wanted to emphasize this, what Christ asks of us, recommends, that those who gathered would give each other a sign of reconciliation, peace and harmony.
How will I answer God ?
I already know, that true love of God and neighbor is a fundamental law in God's kingdom. It's not just that, to do a good deed for your neighbor, and deserve heaven. True love is this, that we love God and our neighbor yes, as Jesus Christ did and taught us. Christ always calls us to this love, especially on Maundy Thursday, however, as we listen to the gospel of the Last Supper.
How can I serve other people ? How I serve others in the family, at school, on the street ?
Am I ready to help those in need at any time? ?
I will learn this true love from the words of Christ, which will also become my prayer :
"Love one another, as I love you.
This is my commandment, that you love one another, there is no greater love, how to lay down your life for your friends.
Love one another, as I love you.
I do not call you servants, but friends. You are my friends, when you do, what I commanded you.
Love one another, how I love you ''.
■ Think :
1. Whom the Israelites considered their neighbor ?
2. When the Lord Jesus explained the law of love of God and neighbor in the Old Covenant ?
3. Who is our neighbor according to the teachings of Christ the Lord ?
4. Who has most perfectly fulfilled the commandment of love ?
5. How Jesus Christ taught us about the new law of love ?
12. What is the fundamental law of God's kingdom ?
The fundamental law of God's kingdom is the law of love.
13. How a Christian should love another person ?
A Christian should love his neighbor yes, how Christ loved people.
■ Task :
1. List the calls to love contained in 1 i 2 St.. John the Apostle.
2. How Father Maksymilian Kolbe fulfilled the new law of love in his life ?