People do all kinds of things for love, they kill and get killed for love. Is it not funny to see people do anything for love? We would have loved somebody, wives crave for their husbands to love them, in some cases husbands crave for their wife to love them.
15 When they had finished eating, Jesus said to Simon Peter, "Simon son of John, do you truly love me more than these?" "Yes, Lord," he said, "you know that I love you." Jesus said, "Feed my lambs."
16 Again Jesus said, "Simon son of John, do you truly love me?" He answered, "Yes, Lord, you know that I love you." Jesus said, "Take care of my sheep."
17 The third time he said to him, "Simon son of John, do you love me?" Peter was hurt because Jesus asked him the third time, "Do you love me?" He said, "Lord, you know all things; you know that I love you." Jesus said, "Feed my sheep.
In these three verses we see Jesus commanding Peter if he loves Him. Verse 15 says feed my lambs 16 take care of my sheep 17 feed my sheep. The
1. Do You Love Me More Than These?
He looked at Peter and asked a direct Question, Do you love me more than these? Probably Jesus was reflecting to the night when Peter bravely disgusted the love for God. Lets flash back on what Peter told Jesus once upon a time in Mathew 26:33 Peter replied, "Even if all fall away on account of you, I never will." Peter here is boldly saying that even if all fall away, even if all leave you I will never leave you, I will love you till the end.
Jesus is asking us this question? We have to understand the love our family has for Jesus will not go into our account, the love our friends have for Jesus will not be a credit to us. The love our christians in our church have for Jesus will not go in to our account. The love our partner has for God will not be a credit to us. Do we love Jesus more than these is the question?
So many of us depending upon others to teach us the Bible to love Jesus. There is nothing wrong in that, there is a point in our life where we have to move on and get matured and grow spiritually ourselves. We depend on people all the time who are around us how to go, where to go, sing loudly, come to church, be happy. We have to grow out of this. We have to grow up and learn to depend upon God and not on people around us. So often we wait only if you challenge me then I will change. Christ love should compel us do the things that we do.
The question was not whether we love our leader, the doctrine of the church, or do we love our church, or do we love our parents, or do we love our brother and sisters but the question is do we love Jesus?
2. Do You Truly Love Me?
Jesus could have asked Peter many other questions. For example he could have asked him, Peter do you hold an important position in the church. Peter would have said yes, "I am an apostle". Did you face any super natural expressions before? Peter would have boasted and said yes, "I walked on water before". But he asked him a very personal question do you truly love me? Real love is different from the false love. Any of us can be a leader, anybody can get baptized and we can all do his services. But what is important is our love for Jesus.
Will he find delight in the Almighty? Will he call upon God at all times?
A hypocrite will not delight in the almighty. But the true disciple delights in the almighty. They would love to be in his presence, they would love to sing praises to Him. So often our work, our families our hobbies stop us from giving God our love. Many times we put Jesus on a hold like we do in telephones we make God wait in our lives.
1 Corinthians 16:22
If anyone does not love the Lord--a curse be on him. Come, O Lord !
Paul uses a strong word it says if any one who does not love God let a curse be upon him. That's a strong statement by Paul. He is not only talking about atheist and who hate God, who hates Jesus and his doctrine. In many ways it refers to us as well. We have to love God more and more, our love for him needs to increase day by day. Love for God is a very important command in the Bible.
Jesus replied: "'Love the Lord your God with all your heart and with all your soul and with all your mind.'
The greatest commandment is so clear. Love God first more than anything else. That's the most important question that Jesus asked Peter. If we feel our love is fading away from Jesus we have to get back that love and become strong disciples.
3. Do You Love Me?
As Peter was hurt we could have also got hurt. Jesus asked him the third time Peter do you love me. He said Lord you know that I love you. It was a very submissive answer for Jesus. Peter didn't point out at every body and said I am better than every one like the way he answered in Matt. 26:33 "even if all fall away I will never fall away". But now his answer was, "Lord you know that I love you".
If you love me, you will obey what I command.
What it means to love Christ? It means to obey His commands. The love that we have for him and the gratefulness that we have for him is because we are saved. That must help us share our faith and to reach out to our friends as well.
Peter changed his life from being a fisherman to an evangelist in the kingdom of God. From a coward he became a rock. From a man who was running away from Jesus stood strong even to die for Jesus.
18 I tell you the truth, when you were younger you dressed yourself and went where you wanted; but when you are old you will stretch out your hands, and someone else will dress you and lead you where you do not want to go."
19 Jesus said this to indicate the kind of death by which Peter would glorify God. Then he said to him, "Follow me!"
Peter realized following Jesus means carrying the cross and that's what exactly he did. Being a disciple means willing to die for him, it means sacrifice.
We can't say I want to be a Christian, a disciple but I can't sacrifice. It does not work that way. At the end he decided to follow Christ no matter what happens in his life. Love also means responsibility in our life, love means service, love means feeding the sheep, love means loving the sheep, love means forgiving each other. Love means take up the cross and follow Jesus.