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Holy Week Devotion

Mandatum Novum The New Commandment

DEVOTION – Maundy Thursday

It takes conviction and effort to be willing to do the up-close and dirty work
of washing a fellow sinner with God’s Word of grace.

Our annual commemoration of the night before Jesus’ crucifixion is known as “Maundy Thursday.” Though it is difficult to be certain, most church historians think that the word maundy is derived from the Latin translation of Jesus’ words, spoken that night, as found in John 13:34: “A new commandment [mandatum novum] I give to you, that you love one another; as I have loved you, that you also love one another.”

What could be “new” about this commandment? Jesus had often instructed His disciples to love their neighbors as themselves, and even to love their enemies. At this time, however, Jesus raised the bar considerably. Each believer is to love his fellow Christian “as I have loved you.” In other words, the depth of our love for one another is to be measured by Jesus’ own humble, self-sacrificial love shown to us.Read More »Mandatum Novum The New Commandment

Our New Life in the Risen Christ


The year is 1753, in America. As long as you can remember, you have had to obey every whim of your master. He determines everything you do. He tells you when to get up and when to go to bed. He determines what you eat, how much you eat, and when you eat. He even picks your spouse for you and sells your children at the slave market. You have no rights and no hope of freedom. There is no underground railroad to freedom, no Abraham Lincoln defending your cause, and no hope of an Emancipation Proclamation.

You are a slave.

But then someone comes along, someone you’ve never met, someone you’ve never done anything for, and says he will help you. He will pay the ransom price to free you from this horrid, hellish slave owner. Having been freed, what then? Would you choose to go back to that slave owner and serve him again? Wouldn’t you instead want to use your newly given freedom to live for the one who set you free?Read More »Our New Life in the Risen Christ