By Tiffany Bretana
Jesus told us how people would know that we were his disciples. He said it in John 13:34-35, I am giving you a new commandment, that you love one another. Just as I have loved you, so you too are to love one another. By this everyone will know that you are My disciples, if you have love and unselfish concern for one another.”
He even told us how to accomplish it. He said love as I have loved you. Many have tried to love others out of their own natural love. But I truly believe that once you are in a relationship with Jesus, you will love others by and through Jesus, and how He has loved you.
There have been times, when someone would upset me, hurt me, criticize me, speak lies about me, and the lists goes on. Earlier in my walk with Jesus, I would say Abba Father, can you believe what they’ve said and done, how they’ve treated me, how they’ve hurt me, and/or how they’ve slandered me? Then I would ask Jesus, how would you handle this? And then He would put me in remembrance of how He dealt with it in biblical accounts. And if we’re quite honest, Jesus will even show us accounts of how we have in present and times past behaved the same. But Jesus didn’t stop there, He would always show how He has forgiven me of it all.
Jesus describes it best in the account of the two debtors in Luke 7:40-48 Jesus, answering, said to the Pharisee, “Simon, I have something to say to you.” And he replied, “Teacher, say it.” “A certain moneylender had two debtors: one owed him five hundred denarii, and the other fifty. When they had no means of repaying the debts, he freely forgave them both. So which of them will love him more?” Simon answered, “The one, I take it, for whom he forgave more.” Jesus said to him, “You have decided correctly.” Then turning toward the woman, He said to Simon, “Do you see this woman? I came into your house but you failed to extend to Me the usual courtesies shown to a guest; you gave Me no water for My feet, but she has wet My feet with her tears and wiped them with her hair demonstrating her love. You gave Me no welcoming kiss, but from the moment I came in, she has not ceased to kiss My feet. You did not even anoint My head with ordinary oil, but she has anointed My feet with costly and rare perfume. Therefore I say to you, her sins, which are many, are forgiven, for she loved much; but he who is forgiven little, loves little.” Then He said to her, “Your sins are forgiven.”
Quite honestly, we can try to justify it, which has sinned more or less, but not before God. In James 2:10, it is explained in the eyes of God: For whoever keeps the whole Law but stumbles in one point, he has become guilty of breaking all of it.
With that being said and the realization of that we’ve all been forgiven much, we can love others and forgive others, since we have been loved and forgiven much. As Jesus also said, in Matthew 25:40 The King will answer and say to them, ‘I assure you and most solemnly say to you, to the extent that you did it for one of these brothers of Mine, even the least of them, you did it for Me.’
I try to make it my will to see each and everyone through the finished work of Jesus on the cross of Calvary. I say try because I know I’m not perfect. There are times when it does sting for longer then it should. But I choose to forgive, release, and bless and seek the Father on the way forward. As the Father will reveal to you how to handle each situation, because what He may instruct you in one situation will not necessarily be the way forward that the Father will reveal to you to handle another. We don’t love people on their terms but on God’s terms. As we do see a distinct difference how the Lord spoke and treated the sinner with His goodness that led to repentance and how He spoke and answered others with questions who questioned who He-Jesus was in God.