Vs. 1, “It was just before the Passover Feast. Jesus knew that the time had come for him to leave this world and go to the Father. Having loved his own who were in the world, he now showed them the full extent of his love.” The timing is impeccable, as Jesus would become the Passover lamb whose blood was shed for the salvation of God’s people. Jesus goes on to display a part of this love by washing His disciple’s feet (vs. 1-17). Question: What was the significance of this? Only servants washed feet, what was Jesus doing? The washing also served as a sign of their spiritual lives being washed by the Living Water in Jesus. Jesus then quotes Psalm 41:9, as reference that prophecies concerning Judas Iscariot (vs. 18-30). The disciples didn’t completely realize the significance of the revealing of the traitor, but Judas has now made his decision. After Judas’s departure, Jesus begins to encourage the apostles for their road would also become very difficult (vs. 31-38)
Regarding application…Love One Another. Vs. 34, “A new command I give you: Love one another. As I have loved you, so you must love one another.” Question: What made this a new commandment? God gave this commandment previously to Moses. What gives? The old commandment was based on the law, but this new commandment to love is based on grace. This love would now be demonstrated on the cross. This is why we are now given a new definition of loving one another. Yesterday, I preached a message from John 4 with the topic of considering “our purpose.” The woman at the well couldn’t help but share this message of hope to the people in her town. She was once rejected, but now she understood her purpose. But this purpose must have a very important ingredient in it. Love must be mixed in with all that we do. Question: Are you loving as Jesus loved you?
Vs. 4, “And Judas went to the chief priests and the officers of the temple guard and discussed with them how he might betray Jesus.” The gauntlet has been thrown down and will of God is set in motion. What a tragic tale that Judas Iscariot brings to light. But that would not deter Jesus from fulfilling His Father’s will. As they celebrated Passover, it is no coincidence that Jesus (The Lamb of God) would shed His blood just as the lamb did in Egypt for God’s people. It really amazes me that in the midst of the last supper, that Jesus is so patient with his bickering apostles (vs. 24). Jesus would warn them there soon will be a time when people will no longer welcome them (vs. 36-38). Now we come to the events in the Garden of Gethsemane (vs. 39-53). Jesus teaches us all about life and dependence upon the Father. I always feel myself rooting for Peter’s courage in drawing his sword to defend Jesus (vs. 50). But, Jesus would not allow the enemy to get a foothold in God’s plan. The enemy probably thought he was winning, but God was and always is in ultimate control. Sadly, we see Jesus’ prophecy of Peter denying him three times come true (vs. 54-62). Even more excruciating, we must read about the mockery of trial(s) and the beating Jesus would endure (vs. 63-71)
Regarding application…Not My Will. Vs. 28, “Father, if you are willing, take this cup from me; yet not my will, but yours be done.” Question: What is “my” will? My will can be our own desires whether we believe them to be selfish or even good intentioned. For example, let’s say a father is teaching his son how to build a shelf. He is giving him explicit instructions on building a strong base and using enough nails to strengthen the foundation. The son understands the father’s request, but is in a hurry and wants to play so he only uses four nails instead of the eight his father instructed him. The son had good intentions and technically did listen to his father and even did some of the instruction. But upon the completion of the shelf, it falls down because the son did not follow his father’s will. Question: How do we know the Father’s will? Know His word, pray daily and be connected to the church; so basic yet incredibly hard to do because we are selfish. Make today a day where you mirror the prayer of Jesus!