“A new command I give you …”
Perhaps John sat up from reclining against his Master’s chest to look Him in the eye. Maybe Matthew made a mental note that he needed to remember this and write about it later. Then he forgot.
“… Love one another …”
Maybe the thought raced through all the minds of the eleven: Wait, that’s not new! That’s in Leviticus! You told us it was the second-greatest commandment after loving God with all our being!
Then the Master finishes His sentence: “… as I have loved you.”
Did they all think: Master, no! You say it’s time to be glorified; that you’re going away and we can’t follow; and … and you’re leaving us with this impossible new command? ‘As I have loved you’?
Though they have seen Him live this command every day, they will sometimes fail to obey it, but for the most part they will succeed.
So will we.
And someday we’ll join them in praise of the One who led a life of love; who went first where we have followed; who makes all things new.