What Is Maundy Thursday?
A new commandment I give to you, that you love one another: just as I have loved you, you also are to love one another. By this all people will know that you are my disciples, if you have love for one another.” — John 13:34-35
In some more liturgical forms of Christianity, this day is called "Maundy Thursday." The term "Maundy" comes from the Latin word for "Commandment" because, after the foot-washing, meal, and betrayal of Judas, Jesus gave his followers a commandment to love one another, as we read about here.
Now, the big question is: what makes this commandment "new" when the Old Testament already tells us to love God with all our heart, soul, and mind (Deuteronomy 6:5; Leviticus 19:18)?
Well, there are a couple of subtle differences this time. First, this "old" commandment is now forever tied to the living actions and examples set by Jesus. Second, this "old" commandment is going to find fulfillment in the sacrificial atonement of Jesus. And these things make this "old" commandment "new" or "complete." It's a restorative sacrificial love made possible only through Jesus's life, death, and resurrection. And now Jesus wants us to love him and others with sacrificial love, which he modeled for them when he wrapped that towel around his waist.
The point is this — Are you loving well? Does your life reflect the genuine and visible love of Jesus to the church and the world? Remember, this isn't just a suggestion or an option — it's a commandment to love. So go love on someone today and love intentionally. Jesus did.
- How can I tangibly demonstrate sacrificial love, following Jesus's example of wrapping a towel around his waist to serve others?
- In what ways can I ensure that my life reflects the genuine and visible love of Jesus to both my church community and the world around me?
DO THIS: Love someone intentionally and sacrificially today, as Jesus did for you.
PRAY THIS: Dear Lord, guide me each day to embody your selfless love so that through my actions and interactions, others may witness your presence and be touched by your grace. Grant me the strength and compassion to love others intentionally and sacrificially, just as you have loved us. Amen.
PLAY THIS: How Deep the Father's Love For Us.
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