“I give you a new command: Love one another. Just as I have loved you, you must also love one another. By this all people will know that you are My disciples, if you have love for one another.”
It is interesting how we Christians designate and identify ourselves – Baptist, Methodist, Church of Christ, Assembly Of God, etc. We often find our identity in the name of our little group. Sometimes even in the specific name of our own little group within our larger group. It’s natural to take pride in the name on our door. We see this as our family. Yet, Jesus has another measure for our identity. He speaks of something deeper and stronger by which we are to be known. Something that unifies across all man-made walls. Something beyond the natural. Something that has been poured into our hearts by the Holy Spirit bringing hope, peace and strength. We are to be known by our love. It seems almost trite to us these days. Who doesn’t know that? Apparently a lot of us know it but don’t practice it. The promise from Lord Jesus is clear: We will be known as His disciples by our love.
This teaching must be heeded in these days of hatefulness and division within our culture. The church must stand in contrast. We must have the salt and light of love. All people must see the love that unites us and motivates us. They will know we are Christians by our love.