Friday of the Seventh Week of Easter
The gospel passage presents three questions asked by Jesus to Peter, his disciples. Thought at the peripheral level these questions appears to be the same they have different levels of meaning in the context.
In the first question, Peter is asked whom he loved most the Lord himself or “these.” Though unclear it sounds ‘these’ would mean anything other than the Lord, our profession, friends, family members etc. However, the second question asked Peter, if he loved with God’s love. Studying the Bible in Greek, one can notice the use of two words for love in this context. Jesus asking the question uses the word “agape” (the highest form of expression of love) but Peter in his response uses the word “phileo” (a word used to express brotherly love). This context of the second question makes the third question relevant ‘Peter, do you really love me; love me as a brother even?” Yet the Lord does not abandon him rather he is assuring Peter, one day you will grow to the highest form of Love, to a level of divine love, which is willing to sacrifice even your life for the sake of your brothers.
Dear friends, Jesus is addressing these questions to each one of us today. The challenge that is placed before us is to grow into the agape love in our relationship with everyone we meet.