This Preaching in Shorts sermon series is called “Interacting Well”.
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John 13:15-17 (MSG)
15 I’ve laid down a pattern for you. What I’ve done, you do. 16 I’m only pointing out the obvious. A servant is not ranked above his master; an employee doesn’t give orders to the employer. 17 If you understand what I’m telling you, act like it—and live a blessed life.
1. Knowing who you are in Him
John 13:3-5 (NIV)
3 Jesus knew that the Father had put all things under his power, and that he had come from God and was returning to God; 4 so he got up from the meal, took off his outer clothing, and wrapped a towel around his waist. 5 After that, he poured water into a basin and began to wash his disciples’ feet, drying them with the towel that was wrapped around him.
Jesus knew who He was. He knew where he came from and where he was headed, so He did not care about “position”.
It is important to know who you are in Him. That you are His beloved, His child, the apple of His eye, His workmanship (poema, His poem). You are loved with an everlasting, unconditional, amazing love, by your heavenly Papa. Because of that, you can start….
2. Thriving not striving
John 13:6-8 (NIV)
6 He came to Simon Peter, who said to him, “Lord, are you going to wash my feet?” 7 Jesus replied, “You do not realize now what I am doing, but later you will understand.” 8 “No,” said Peter, “you shall never wash my feet.” Jesus answered, “Unless I wash you, you have no part with me.”
We know from Luke 22 that during this last supper the disciples were still arguing amongst themselves about which one of them was considered to be greatest.
Luke 22:24 (NIV)
24 Also a dispute arose among them as to which of them was considered to be greatest.
Here is the deal, the wash basin and towel were sitting there, and they needed to have their feet washed, but that was the job of the lowest of servants. The disciples were al sitting there full of themselves, and so Jesus gets the towel and the bowl. Peter’s response is, Jesus, I don’t wan’t you to wash my feet, I want one of these other guys to do it. Knowing who you are in Him allows you to thrive, to live, instead of striving to be something, that even if you achieved it would still not be life giving.
3. Real life in Christ is a paradox
What is a paradox? Two physicians hanging out together.
an apparently self-contradictory (even absurd) statement which, on closer inspection, is found to contain a truth reconciling the conflicting opposites
Matthew 20:16 (NIV)
16 “So the last will be first, and the first will be last.”
Mark 9:35 (NIV)
35 Sitting down, Jesus called the Twelve and said, “If anyone wants to be first, he must be the very last, and the servant of all.”
Luke 17:33 (NIV)
33 Whoever tries to keep his life will lose it, and whoever loses his life will preserve it.
John 13:12-15 (NIV)
12 When he had finished washing their feet, he put on his clothes and returned to his place. “Do you understand what I have done for you?” he asked them. 13 “You call me ‘Teacher’ and ‘Lord,’ and rightly so, for that is what I am. 14 Now that I, your Lord and Teacher, have washed your feet, you also should wash one another’s feet. 15 I have set you an example that you should do as I have done for you.
He set the example. He served. He loved well. He loved extravagantly. He extends the mercy of the Father.
4. This real life is found in loving God and loving your neighbor
John 13:17 (NIV)
17 Now that you know these things, you will be blessed if you do them.
Love well, love extravagantly, extend mercy to those who need it, love God all in and love your neighbor as yourself.