There’s a story about a person who saw an angel walking down the street. The angel was carrying a torch in one hand and a bucket of water in the other. “What are you going to do with that torch and that bucket of water?” the person asked.
The angel stopped immediately, looked at the person and said, “With the torch, I’m going to burn down the mansions of heaven; and with the bucket of water, I’m going to put out the fires of hell. Then we’re going to see who really loves God.”
The angel’s point is that many people obey God’s commandments out of fear of punishment in hell or hope of reward in heaven. They don’t obey for the reason Jesus gives us in today’s gospel – they don't obey them out of love. Jesus says, “This is my commandment: love one another as I love you.”
When we sum up God’s commandments, they tell us to love God and to love one another. This is what Jesus is telling us in today’s gospel. We show the Lord we love Him by following His teaching. We also show the Lord we love Him through our love for one another.
So the commandments teach us to love. As we show our love to the Lord and to one another, we can hear Jesus speaking to us when He says, “This is my commandment: Love one another as I love you.”
Sincerely in Christ,