John 13:35 Commentary - Expository Notes with Practical Observations on the New TestamentTo recommend the foregoing duty, of loving one another, with the greater advantage, our Saviour tells us here, that it will be the best evidence of our relation to him as sincere disciples: By this shall all men know that ye are my disciples. The disciples of John were known by the austerity of their lives, the disciples of the Pharisees by their habit and separation from other men. Christ will have his disciples known by their profound affection to each other, which in the primitive times was so conspicuous, that the very heathens did cry out and say, See how the Christians love one another!
Here observe, 1. Our Saviour doth not say, By this men shall conjecture and guess that you belong to me, as being my disciples, but they shall certainly know it.
2. He doth not say: By this shall ye know yourselves to be my disciples, and one another to be so; but by this shall all others know it as well as yourselves.
3. He doth not say, By this shall all men know that you look like my disciples, but that you are indeed what you pretend to be, namely by your assembling often together in my house of prayer, by your frequent fastings, by your reading the scriptures daily, by your hearing all these put together, will be not sufficient evidence of your discipleship, if you keep up a secret grudge in you hearts one against another; but by this shall all men know that ye are my discples, if ye love one another.
Learn hence, That one of the best proofs and evidences we can have of our relation to Christ, as his sincere disciples, is an hearty love and good will one towards another.
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Expository Notes with Practical Observations on the New Testament
William Burkitt (1650 - 1703) was a Church of England clergyman, bible expositor, and devotional writer.
Volume 1: Matthew - John, was published in 1700.
Volume 2: Acts - Revelation was published 1703.