April 24, 2019

Hear This: Jesus Still Loves Us!

April 24, 2019


John 21:15
This weekend’s reading: John 21:15-17


Jesus asked Peter, “Simon do you love me more than these fish?” The word Jesus used for love was agape, which means unconditional love no matter what happens.  Peter responds with filios, the Greek word for brotherly love.
While I can’t prove this, I imagine Peter saying to himself, “How can I tell him again that I love him unconditionally?  On the night that I denied him, I told him that I loved (agape) him, that I’d never leave him, and that I’d fight for him.  After denying him three times, how can I dare say agape again?”
I image Peter saying, “I do want to love him unconditionally (agape), but I don’t want to fail again.  How can I promise something I cannot do? I know I will fail again. Yet, I love him like a brother (philia).”  Then, I image Peter thinking, “That’s it.  I do love him like a brother” which results in Peter saying, “Yes, Jesus, you are my brother (philia).”
Jesus said, “Feed my lambs.”  Peter didn’t respond.  He may have heard the words, but what he didn’t hear was Jesus still reaching out.


  • From our childhood, most of us have heard that Jesus loves us. Do you really hear it?  Do you really know this love?
  • In what ways might you hear Jesus reaching out to you even today?


  • Discuss how each of you loves each other.
  • Discuss the times in which you disagree, yet even in the disagreement you still love each other.
  • Give each other the assurance that no matter how tough your relationship may get at times, you will still love the other.


Most loving gracious, Lord, after all I’ve done in my life, it amazes me that you still love me.  After the number of times I’ve failed, you still love me.  Lord, help me hear this and also help me live this same love with others. In your gracious name, I pray. Amen.