“Just as the Father has loved Me, I have also loved you; abide in My love. If you keep My commandments, you will abide in My love; just as I have kept My Father’s commandments and abide in His love. These things I have spoken to you so that My joy may be in you, and that your joy may be made full.” (John 15:9-11)
There are perhaps no more encouraging yet challenging words from the Lord Jesus Christ than the words spoken to His disciples prior to the arrival of Judas the Betrayer. Jesus is seeking to communicate comfort, assurance, and promise to His disciples. He is leaving them to return to the Father, but He will not leave them as orphans (14:18). Jesus will come to them in the Person of the Holy Spirit. Jesus loves His people and seeks to communicate that love to these troubled disciples. Is the act of His loving His people just words or a living reality in your spirit? To what degree does the Son of God love His people?
Note the phrase, as the Father has loved Me. Imagine the fullness of the radiant glory of the Father's love for the second member of the Trinity. Nothing hinders the Son of God from experiencing the full infinite expression of the Father's love for Him. The Son of God is always doing what is pleasing to the Father. There is no sin within His Being because He is God. He possesses the ability from eternity, in eternity, and unto eternity to know the unceasing infinite love of God the Father. Being the express image of His person, Jesus both glories and radiates the glory of the Father's infinite love to Him.
Brethren, it is to that same measure Jesus loves His people! The Biblical text is comparative; to the same degree that the Father loves the Son is the same measure that Jesus loves His people! Therefore Jesus is radiating the glory of His unceasing, infinite love to His disciples. No condemnation! No judgment of wrath! No changeable position towards you - just full, free, infinite, never failing love! My brethren, do you live in the conscious assurance of the knowledge that Jesus loves you to the same degree that the Father loves Him?
Now we must abide [remain] in His love. This does not mean that we can lose our salvation, but that we are to remain in the full fellowship of His love. In justification, man moves into a position of everlasting love in Christ. Who can separate us from the love of Christ? In sanctification, we abide in Him so that this Holy love is constantly and fervently known and experienced. The pathway of abiding is the pathway of obedience. If you keep His commandments, you shall abide in His love; to the same degree that I have kept my Father's commandments, and abide in His love [paraphrased for application].
The proportion of the assurance of His love is dependent on our full obedience. In other words, an inconsistent Christian life chokes the capacity of the reception of Christ's infinite love towards His people. My brethren, once you have known His love in truth, anytime that fellowship of love becomes strained and soiled due to our sin there arises a cry within our hearts for the restoration of that love. It is the walk, in the light of His love, that breeds an abiding joy within every believer. Jesus does not desire our joy in His love to be lacking in any possible measure. Jesus' joy is in the Father's love towards Him, maintained through obedience (14:31). Jesus' abiding joy gives way to fullness of joy. Our joy is in Christ's love towards us, maintained increasingly through our obedience. Our abiding joy erupts into a fullness of joy.
Let us assess the knowledge of the light of His love. Meditate on these Words and let them become engrafted in your soul. Seek daily to maintain the love of His fellowship. The result will be a joy unspeakable and full of glory!