A Footwashing Attitude - Christ expected His disciples to take on humility.
[Darris McNeely] I’ve been doing an ongoing series of Dailies about becoming a disciple. I’ve come to a point where we ought to focus, for at least a couple of series here, on humility. Becoming a disciple – apprenticing ourself to someone who is a mentor, to teach us whatever trade, profession, skill, study that it might be – will require a level of humility. And certainly, to be a disciple of God, a disciple of Jesus Christ, is going to require that we have a measure of humility. Jesus Christ expected His disciples to take on humility, to become a student of Him, and in order to learn the things of the Kingdom of God.
In Matthew 10:24 Matthew 10:24The disciple is not above his master, nor the servant above his lord.
American King James Version×, Jesus said that “A student is not above his teacher, nor a servant above his master.” In saying what He did, Jesus was talking about the elements that it takes for a disciple to have to engage in the work of Jesus Christ. And through three years of teaching, Jesus taught them according to this particular principle. But they still didn’t get it. Near the end of His life, just before His death, they came to a point where they were arguing over who would be the greatest within the Kingdom of God, and Christ had to show them that they must take on the attitude of a servant.
When it came to the actual night before His death, and after the symbols of the bread and wine were introduced into the Passover service, Jesus took a towel, we’re told in John chapter 13, and He girded Himself, and He began to wash His disciples’ feet. In doing that, Peter said, “No, no, you’re not going to wash mine,” and Jesus said, “Well, if I don’t wash your feet, you’re not going to have any part within Me” (John 13:2-8 John 13:2-8 2 And supper being ended, the devil having now put into the heart of Judas Iscariot, Simon’s son, to betray him;
3 Jesus knowing that the Father had given all things into his hands, and that he was come from God, and went to God;
4 He rises from supper, and laid aside his garments; and took a towel, and girded himself.
5 After that he pours water into a basin, and began to wash the disciples’ feet, and to wipe them with the towel with which he was girded.
6 Then comes he to Simon Peter: and Peter said to him, Lord, do you wash my feet?
7 Jesus answered and said to him, What I do you know not now; but you shall know hereafter.
8 Peter said to him, You shall never wash my feet. Jesus answered him, If I wash you not, you have no part with me.
American King James Version×). Christ was taking on the lowly act of humbling Himself on His knees, before His disciples, and washing their feet – something that a servant would do in a house, as a person came into that particular house. That’s why Peter didn’t want His Master, His Rabbi, to do that. But Jesus said, “You must, if you’re going to have any part in Me.” And He washed their feet and He set them an example of service, humility, and love for one another, that night before His arrest and death.
Years later, the apostle Peter, I think, finally learned the lesson. In 1 Peter 5:1-4 1 Peter 5:1-4 1 The elders which are among you I exhort, who am also an elder, and a witness of the sufferings of Christ, and also a partaker of the glory that shall be revealed:
2 Feed the flock of God which is among you, taking the oversight thereof, not by constraint, but willingly; not for filthy lucre, but of a ready mind;
3 Neither as being lords over God’s heritage, but being ensamples to the flock.
4 And when the chief Shepherd shall appear, you shall receive a crown of glory that fades not away.
American King James Version×, Peter talks about what it means to be a shepherd. The real end result of becoming a disciple, he said, would be a shepherd who does not lord it over those that are entrusted to him. One of the things that he said in 1 Peter chapter 5 – don’t lord it over those entrusted to one’s care. Peter finally learned the lesson near the end of his life, as he reflected back on what Jesus did that night.
A disciple must have humility. Without it, we’re not going to have the mindset to learn from the One who is teaching us. Remember that as a key element, a key ingredient, of being a disciple of Jesus Christ.
That’s BT Daily . Join us next time.