Written by: Christopher Sernaque
Question: Aren’t the Ten Commandments abolished by the new commandment to love one another? (John 13:34)
Answer: There are a few components to this answer:
a. John 13:34 does not say anything about abolishing the Ten Commandments. That is an assumption that is read into the text.
b. The commandment to love one another is not “new” in the sense that it is an unheard concept that abolished the law. The command to love God and to love others existed in the Old Testament and love has been and always will be the foundation of God’s law. (Deuteronomy 6:5, Leviticus 19:18, Matthew 22:37-40)
c. In what sense is this commandment “new” then? Take note that this commandment was given in the context of Judas’ betrayal. Thus, Jesus is saying that the disciples need to learn to love one other, or they will end up betraying each other, like Judas. (John 13:18-30) The disciples did eventually learn to love one another and when they were all on one accord, they received the Holy Spirit. (Acts 2:1-5)