The Gospel of John, part three

I’m closing out my look at the Gospel of John today with two final verses.  If you missed the first two then here’s PART ONE and here’s PART TWO.  The first verse I’m going to talk about below is among the most powerful I’ve read in the bible so far and something that’s really at the core of my belief system.  As I move to my Monday/Tuesday/Thursday posting schedule next week, I’m going to dive into the book of 1 John.  I found a huge amount of verses there, they just kept jumping off the page at me and really speaking to me in deep ways.

If you’d like something to listen to while you read, here’s a song I recently discovered that’s really been moving me over the past few days.  It’s an incredibly powerful song.  CLICK HERE to listen while you read.

Verses that jumped

The Gospel of John affords us another amazing example of the heart of our God. With his own death just a short time away, Jesus is enjoying a final meal with his disciples when he does something that takes my breath away.  He gets up from the table, fills a basin with water, wraps a towel around his waist, and then get this, he gets on the floor and starts washing the disciple’s feet. (John 13: 1-5). My jaw hangs open when I read this.  Jesus, a sinless man, a man of love and healing and of promise and of truth, an innocent man who knows he’s about to face a brutal, awful murder even though he’s committed no crime, stands up from the dinner table and begins to wash the feet of his followers.

I want you to just soak in the picture of that for a moment. I want you to really dive into the mindset of a man that would do such a thing. For all that he is, the GOD OF ALL CREATION, Jesus is still not above this most lowly of services to his friends and followers. This is like the CEO of your company walking into janitor’s closet and washing the janitor’s feet. This is like the President of your country walking under the bridge and washing the homeless man’s feet. This is Jesus, on his hands and knees, washing the feet of his disciples. It is perhaps the most powerful example of the servant heart of our God and of his love and adoration for his children. Jesus said the following to them once he finished washing their feet.

John 13:14-15 If I then, your Lord and Teacher, have washed your feet, you also ought to wash one another’s feet. 15For I have given you an example, that you also should do just as I have done to you.

I’m deeply moved by the ways in which Jesus served people. After his resurrection, he met Peter and some of the others on the beach and cooked them all breakfast (John 21:9-13). This God of ours, in the flesh on this earth, washing people’s feet and cooking people meals. I’m deeply convicted by these examples. I haven’t always been the most helpful person in life. I’ve balked at times when asked to give assistance to others. And then I study this beautiful bible of mine, and I read things like this, and I know truly that I should serve others as often as I possibly can. What better way to display the love of Jesus, what better way to walk in his footsteps, what better way to have a heart like his heart, than to serve others? There’s a reason that helping others feels so good to us and I think it’s because by helping others and serving others we’re behaving in the exact manner that Jesus did when he was walking this planet.

__________

The final thing I wanted to share out of the gospel of John are his closing words in the book.

John 21:25 Now there are also many other things that Jesus did. Were every one of them to be written, I suppose that the world itself could not contain the books that would be written.

John’s not the most poetic writer in the bible. Some books are full of vivid descriptions, while others are more business like and to the point. Through my studies, I found John to be a more to the point kind of writer. However, in this final verse in his gospel, John paints an extremely vivid picture. He doesn’t say that if all of Jesus’ deeds were written they would fill a cave. He doesn’t say they’d fill a warehouse or even a valley. John says that if all of the things that Jesus did were written, the world itself could not contain the amount of books that would be written.

I love the ways in which the bible challenges me and draws me in, and I find great mystery and awe in this closing statement.

Closing

I’m excited to move into a regular schedule with this blog next week.  I also think that breaking the posts up into shorter blogs is improving their readability, so that’s good too.  God’s word is so amazing, and if you’re not making a regular habit of reading it I’d so encourage you to try and change that.  I fall deeper in love with God every time I read his word, his heart is laid out in that book for us to get to know.  And it’s a truly beautiful heart.

For prayers this time, I want to relay and pray over something I was taught last night by a man I greatly admire named Jon Dugdale.  At the close of a class he was teaching last night, Jon said “why not me”.  God used Paul to spread the word all over.  God used David to overcome a giant and become a great king.  All through history, and all in the world today, God is utilizing people to do great and mighty things for His kingdom.  So for our prayer today, let’s ask God “why not me”.  It’s downright miraculous what God can do if only he has a willing vessel, so let’s pray today to be those willing vessels.  You’re doing big things in the modern world, Lord, and I want to be a part of that.  Use me, Father, in whatever manner or mission you so choose.

If you prayed that above prayer, know that I prayed it in agreement with you as your brother in Christ.  And whoever you are and no matter what you’ve been up to and even if you didn’t pray that prayer, know that God loves you.  I love you, too!

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