23.Whom Jesus loved. The peculiar love with which Christ loved John plainly testifies that, if we love some more than others, this is not always inconsistent with brotherly love; but all lies in this, that our love shall be directed towards God, and that every man, in proportion as he excels in the gifts of God, shall share in it the more largely. From this end Christ never turned aside in the smallest degree; but with us the case is widely different, for such is the vanity of our mind, that there are few who, in loving men, approach more nearly to God. And yet the love of men towards each other will never be properly regulated, unless it be directed to God.
Lay at table in Jesus’ bosom. What is here related by John might be regarded in the present day as indecorous; but such was, at that time, the manner of being placed at table; for they did not sit, as we do, at table, but, after having put off their shoes, lay half-stretched out, reclining on small cushions.