John 15:12, 13- This is my command: Love one another the way I loved you. This is the very best way to love. Put your life on the line for your friends. (The Message Bible)
The phrase above, “put your life on the line for your friends,” has also been rendered “greater love has no one than this that he lay down his life for his friends.” You might remember that there are a couple of words that come from ancient Greek into English that we translate as life. There is bios from which we get the word biology and zoe from which we get the word zoology. The word for life here is neither of these but psyche from which we get the word psychology. We certainly admire and respect people who lay their physical lives on the line for the good of others. Jesus, too, gave his physical life on the cross. But he is talking about something even broader and deeper here. He is saying that, in Jesus, God was giving the very essence of himself to us and for us and that we also should do the same to and for others. This is the basis for community, putting aside our own wants and desires for the good of others; changing the very character and course of our lives so that others will benefit. One modern example of this is Dr. Martin Luther King. Will another modern example be you?