John 15:12–17 (NKJV)
This passage begins a discussion of how Jesus’ disciples should relate to one another. Love is the key for the relationship with God and other disciples.
12 This is My commandment, that you love one another as I have loved you. 13 Greater love has no one than this, than to lay down one’s life for his friends. 14 You are My friends if you do whatever I command you. 15 No longer do I call you servants, for a servant does not know what his master is doing; but I have called you friends, for all things that I heard from My Father I have made known to you. 16 You did not choose Me, but I chose you and appointed you that you should go and bear fruit, and that your fruit should remain, that whatever you ask the Father in My name He may give you. 17 These things I command you, that you love one another.John 15:12-17
Jesus offers the disciples an example to follow: love one another as I have loved you. How does a disciple know the depths of the love of Christ? Verse 13 answers that with emphasis! The greatest love will be exemplified by the fact that I will lay down my life for you. In response, Jesus looks for obedience. Jesus changes the narrative, however, on this relationship by saying that their obedience does not signify that Christians are just servants, but rather that they are friends, filled with the knowledge of the truth provided by the Father through Christ. Having been chosen by Christ, and having received this truth, His disciples are then commanded to love one another. Love is the key to serving God. No one can respond to Christ with the depth of obedience He requires without love, and no one can love others without the example of Christ’s love. Realize and comprehend the love of Christ, and then do your best to pass on that gracious, powerful love to others!