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May 15, 2022

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DG BookGospel: John 13:31-33a, 34-35
When Judas had gone out, Jesus said, “Now is the Son of Man glorified, and God is glorified in him. God will glorify him, and he
will glorify him very soon. My children, I am with you for only a little while; you will look for me, but as I already told the Jews, now

I tell you: where I am going you cannot come. I give you a new commandment: Love one another! Just as I have loved
you, you also must love one another. By this everyone will know that you are my disciples, if you have love for one another.”

 

Reflection:

 

What is so new about the “new commandment?” In essence,
it does not seem different from the “old.” Deut. 6:4 spoke of loving God
with one’s entire being and Lev 19:18 spoke of loving one’s neighbor as
oneself; and Jesus reaffirmed them as the “great commandment”
(cf. Mt. 22:37-40). Yet, the “new commandment” is definitely new
in terms of its model, scope, and semiotic value: We shall do this
loving as Jesus has done – “Just as I have loved you, you must….” If, in
the Leviticus the “neighbor” applied tribalistically to members of one’s
own group, here Jesus leaves it open-ended, to include even our
enemies (cf. Mt. 5:44; Lk 10: 25-37). Finally, love of such scope modelled
after Jesus shall be the sign by which the world would know a Christian.

 

 

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