Monday, February 26, 2024

How to Love Like Jesus

“By this everyone will know that you are my disciples, if you love one another.”
– John 13:25

Before the end of the Last Supper, Jesus dropped two bombshells to the 12 men sitting at the table with Him. In John 13, He told them that one of His trusted apostles would betray Him, and that another of them would deny even knowing Him.

Jesus made it clear that the disciple who would betray Him was Judas – even though many Bible scholars have concluded that Judas was sitting in the seat of honor, on Jesus’ left-hand side. Try to wrap your head around that: Jesus not only washed the feet of his friend who would betray Him, He likely gave Him the best seat at His final meal. And in verse 38, Peter’s heart must have dropped when he heard Jesus say, “I tell you the truth, before the rooster crows, you will disown Me three times!”

Yet Jesus showed His love to both men, despite what He knew was coming. And in verses 34 and 35, Jesus gave His disciples one of the most important commands He had ever given them: “As I have loved you, so you must love one another. By this everyone will know that you are my disciples, if you love one another.”

How in the world can we love like that? Let’s look at three ways to love each other like Jesus:

#1: Love other Christians selflessly and sacrificially. The Greek word used for “love” in these verses is “agape”—the highest form of love. Agape love is always others-centered, never self-centered. Jesus didn’t think of Himself. He was always thinking of others. So much good takes place in the Church when we love each other selflessly and sacrificially. You’ve heard the old expression: “Give until it hurts.” We could just as easily say, “Love until it hurts.”

#2: Love other Christians understandingly. Jesus knew every flaw in every one of his disciples, yet He loved them anyway. Sadly, many Christians only practice conditional love. “I will love you only as long as you make good choices, only as long as you don’t screw up, and only as long as you don’t get on my nerves.” That’s NOT agape love. Agape love sees the stupidity in others and knows that some people are really hard to love. But agape love loves them anyway … just like Jesus.

#3: Love other Christians forgivingly. Jesus taught us, “For if you forgive men when they sin against you, your heavenly Father will also forgive you. But if you do not forgive men their sins, your Father will not forgive your sins” (Matthew 6:14-15). Is Jesus actually saying that God’s forgiveness is conditional? Yes! If you expect God to forgive you, He expects you to forgive others. So, if you refuse to forgive others, God will refuse to forgive you. The first thing Jesus said as He hung on the cross was, “Father forgive them, for they do not know what they’re doing.” That’s agape love in action.

The Church should be the easiest place in the world to find forgiveness. And this should be obvious not only to Christians, but to our not-yet-saved friends and family members as well. As the old chorus goes: “And they'll know we are Christians by our love, by our love. Yeah, they'll know we are Christians by our love.”

Dane Davis is the pastor of Impact Christian Church. Pastor Dane’s new daily devotional, “40 Days in Proverbs,” is now available on Join us on Sunday at 8:30 a.m. or 10 a.m. at 16209 Kamana Road in Apple Valley, or livestream us on Facebook or YouTube. For more information, visit

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