Serving others was Jesus’s last action for those who would carry on his ministry. Jesus never minced words when he connected eternal life directly to how his followers would care for, serve, and love others. He said in John 12 that we must die to our old selves and be buried with him. In doing so, he would produce and multiply life from our new life. Fifty nine times in the New Testament followers of Jesus are commanded to be about one another. Throughout Jesus’s ministry, he expressed and modeled an urgency for our love for others. He told his disciples that people would identify them as such by the way in which they loved.
Our tendency is to see our faith more about our beliefs and our habits. Though these are critical pieces of our walk with the Spirit, we can slip into a mode of self-serving religion and judgmental pride forgetting that “one another” is the theme of Jesus’s ministry and the aim of his mission.
Cyprian, a church leader in third century north Africa, wrote this, “Now I am calling you to broaden your view…by loving your neighbors. Visit them, too; encourage them; provide bread and water for them. I know that in recent months some pagans have been involved in persecuting you. Pray for them; pray for their salvation, and help them. You are God’s children: the descendants of a good Father should prove the imitation of his goodness.” When we are for one another, people meet Jesus and we will be blessed when we show him to them.
John 13:34-35 is one of the last acts of Jesus’s servanthood and the crowning example he gives to show us what we are to be about.
During this series, we're giving you 8 challenges to help you live out the biblical mandate to "one another" and grow closer to Jesus. These challenges are all about serving and loving others in practical ways, just like Jesus did. Whether you're helping out a neighbor or offering a kind word to a friend, each challenge is a chance to show love and strengthen your relationships. Take on these challenges and see the joy and purpose that comes from "one anothering" like Jesus did.