Being born into the Christian faith, I was lazy with the word. I never read my bible and whenever I heard a verse I acted as if I had already heard it and knew what it meant. This arrogance soon ended when I got to a place where I really wanted to know the heart of God, and that was when I picked up my bible. Best thing I ever did! So, I started to really dig deep and read almost every book of the New Testament. Coming to John, I noticed that he kept referring to himself as “the disciple whom Jesus loved.” (John 13 v 23), and he does so six times in the New Testament. In my immaturity in knowing the world, I got really offended, thinking “Wow, this guy really thinks highly of himself to think that Jesus loved him more than the other disciples!” I took this phrase as a sign of pride.
There is a verse in Hebrews 5 verse 12 about spiritual immaturity that says “For though by this time you ought to be teachers, you need someone to teach you again the first principles of the oracles of God; and you have come to need milk and not solid food. For everyone who partakes only of milk is unskilled in the word of righteousness, for he is a babe.” This rings very true in my situation, for as I began to mature in the word, I began to understand what John really meant.
What John understood was the love that Jesus had for all the disciples, he discerned it and lived it. When doing more research, I found that Pastor Joseph Prince had also wondered what it was that made John refer to himself like that, and he explains it like this, “Now, what was John doing? He was practicing and personalizing the love that Jesus had for him. That was his secret!” Jesus loves us all the same, we are his all favourite, and we just don’t understand the fullness and the depth of his love.
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