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Love's Divine Instructor

March 4, 2012 Speaker: Brent Small

Passage: John 13:1–13:15

In this sermon podcast on John 13:1-15, Pastor Brent delivers “3” qualities of love as modeled and taught by Jesus as He washed the disciples feet.

It was the night before Jesus would give His life as a ransom for many on the cross. Jesus and the disciples were gathered in the Upper Room to partake of the last sanctioned Passover Meal. This last Passover feast would be eaten by Christ Himself, the Lamb of God, who would take away the sins of the world. In this final hour with His disciples, Jesus is concerned for them and the legacy that He would leave them. The disciples arguing about who would be the greatest in the kingdom of heaven gave Jesus a perfect opportunity to instruct them in love and the qualities of love that He would require and enable His people to express in their lives in obedience to Him.

It was customary at the Passover feast to wash the feet of those in attendance. The Israelites ate in a reclined position on the floor, which placed one another’s feet in close proximity. Certainly, at this meal the disciples were aware of the custom but appear unwilling in the midst of their debate to perform this humbling act. John records for us that Jesus got up from supper, girded Himself with a towel, filled a bowl with water and prepared to wash the feet of His leading men. He then moved from disciple to disciple and washed their feet.

The act in and of itself is shocking. Matthew Henry describes it as a “miracle of humility.” Jesus wearing a slaves clothing, the towel, identified Himself as a slave and performed a slave’s work. Jesus humbling Himself to that of a slave to teach, instruct and leave an example of love for His people. The love demonstrated by Jesus in this humbling act possesses countless lessons for those who follow Christ. In this message, Pastor Brent determines to reveal the qualities of love as instructed by Jesus’ example. Through His example, Jesus teaches us that love is committed, humble and submissive.