21 Those who accept my commandments and obey them are the ones who love me. And because they love me, my Father will love them. And I will love them and reveal myself to each of them.” 22 Judas (not Judas Iscariot, but the other disciple with that name) said to him, “Lord, why are you going to reveal yourself only to us and not to the world at large?” 23 Jesus replied, “All who love me will do what I say. My Father will love them, and we will come and make our home with each of them. 24 Anyone who doesn’t love me will not obey me. And remember, my words are not my own. What I am telling you is from the Father who sent me.
As Jesus comforted the disciple’s hearts in John 14 He focused His attention to the subject of love and revealed to them:
- Loves Display
Scripture here reveals that the one who loves Jesus is the one who “accepts” His commandments and who “obeys” them. Jesus makes it clear that we are called to own these commandments making them ours so that they become a functioning part of our life. To accept these commandments we need to know and understand them which occurs when we hear, read, study, meditate on and memorize His Word. Simply knowing the commandments is not proof of love, we must also obey them daily. Jesus says that obedience is the mark of true love and the proof of genuine discipleship. Are you hitting the mark of love? Love is demonstrated by obedience not obligation, because obedience is the outgrowth of love. What Jesus is saying is that love for Him is not simply a thing of words but commitment and conduct. If love is real it will be shown in deeds because the lover keeps the commandments of the loved one. If you love Christ, then prove it by obeying what He says in His Word. We prove our love for Jesus when we do what He asks us to do. Today we try to make love about feelings instead of follow through.
- Love Disclosed
Jesus wants and tells us that He will disclose Himself to us as we love Him through obedience, but what about the multitudes that don’t love Him? This is the question Jesus answers when Judas says “Lord, why are you going to reveal yourself only to us and not to the world at large?” Judas expresses his surprise and the perplexity of the whole group. The beauty here is that Jesus allows Himself to be interrupted to entertain our questions without allowing us to change the subject.
Jesus had been disclosing Himself through public teachings, confrontation with the Pharisees, miracles of healing and the casting out demons. So why not continue to outwardly disclosing Himself revealing to the whole world that He was the Messiah? That was what Judas expected of Christ, that He would disclose Himself for who He was to the whole world. Why just disclose Himself to His disciples who are obedient to His teachings? This reveals the heart of the disciples; they expected Christ to do all the disclosing of who He was. Christ’s desire however was to change their hearts and transform them into servant leaders so that they could disclose Him to the world. Today we still desire Christ to do all the disclosing of Himself to the lost yet Christ is disclosing Himself to those who are saved and in obedience, display their love for Him. Why, because Jesus desires that those who love Him would join Him in His redemptive plan and disclose Him to others.
- Loves Dwelling
Jesus Himself declares that the rewards of loving obedience are great when He said “All who love me will do what I say. My Father will love them, and we will come and make our home with each of them” The answer to Judas’ question is love, because Jesus loves them He discloses Himself to them, and because they love Him they disclose Jesus to the world. This responsibility to reveal Jesus to the world is the result of loving Him. So do you love Him, are you obeying Him? If you do, you will be keeping His Word and disclosing Him to the world. The reward of loving Jesus is that He resides with us as we reveal Him to the world. Jesus then goes on to expresses this same teaching from the negative view point. The person who keeps His Word loves Him and the one who does not love Him does not keep His Word. Love here is not regarded as an abstract emotion it is something intensely practical because love involves obedience to Jesus. Love is not a feeling it is a fact that needs to be displayed to the world, disclosing who Jesus is and His desire to dwell with us. Are you displaying love, what about Jesus are you disclosing to others?