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God’s Love for Jesus Becomes the Paradigm of Love

May 11, Thursday of the 5th Week of Easter
Daily Readings: Acts 15:7-21; Gospel:  John 15:9-11

The more a person is opened to the Holy Spirit, the more she or he is all-inclusive and accommodating in her or his approach to issues that dominate human life, whether in the spiritual realm or secular. The way Saints Peter and James approached numerous crises in the early Church kept up the unity of the Church and thus became a paradigm forever.

The First Reading from the Acts of the Apostles presents the speech of St. Peter, the first Supreme Pontiff of the Church, after much debate and deliberation in the first Jerusalem Council. Inspired by Paul and Barnabas's lives, ministries, and presentations, the Gentiles occupy a significant place in his speech. He says God chose him to bring the Good News to the Gentiles first. More importantly, Peter is convinced that God made no distinction between the Jews and the Gentiles. His question remains relevant: If God does not distinguish between them, why do humans? Why should believers in Christ do this? Is it not like putting God to the test? There is no need to place a yoke on the necks of the disciples. James, the brother of the Lord, the second bishop of Jerusalem, continues the tempo of Peter when he says, “I have reached the decision that we should not trouble those Gentiles who are turning to God” (v. 19). It does not mean lawlessness, but maintaining the essentials, the basics, and keeping things simple.

The Gospel Reading from St. John continues the metaphor or allegory of Vine and the Branches. There are two significant points here: Love and keeping Jesus’ commandments.

(i). God’s love for Jesus becomes the paradigm of love. Jesus loves the apostles as much as his Father loves him. Humans are to love God as Jesus loves them. We are to love our neighbors as Jesus loves them. The love of God and Jesus consists in giving up oneself. It is selfless love. It is an all-embracing love. It is an inclusive love. Sts. Peter and James were able to do this inspired by the apostle's Paul and Barnabas, who fell back on the model of Jesus.

(ii). According to Jesus’ teaching, living Jesus’ commandments expresses love. The one who loves Jesus keeps his commandments. Jesus did that in the first place and remained in God’s love. The ultimate purpose is to remain in the joy of Jesus: “My joy may be in you, and that your joy may be complete” (v. 11).


Radio Veritas Asia (RVA), a media platform of the Catholic Church, aims to share Christ. RVA started in 1969 as a continental Catholic radio station to serve Asian countries in their respective local language, thus earning the tag “the Voice of Asian Christianity.”  Responding to the emerging context, RVA embraced media platforms to connect with the global Asian audience via its 21 language websites and various social media platforms.