Chapter 22 » 22.10


In friendship we are beyond law and obedience, beyond rules and commandments, beyond all constraint, in a world of freedom. But did not Jesus say, ‘Ye are my friends if ye do whatsoever I command you’? Yes, he did. We, on our side, are apt to miss the quiet humour of his paradoxes. ‘These are my commandments,’ he goes on, ‘that ye love one another’.

In other words, the friendship of Christ is realised in our friendships with one another. His command is that we rise above commandments, and therefore his obedience is perfect freedom. Make service your centre, with its laws and duties and self-sacrifice, and life is a bondage. Make friendship the centre and life is freedom.

John Macmurray, 1942

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