When time was running out, Jesus washed His disciples’ feet:Christ Washing Peter’s Feet by Ford Madox Brown 1857-58
Then he predicted his betrayal and gave a morsel of bread to His betrayer. Next, He went out and gave His disciples and us:
A New Commandment
Later, the same John tells us in his 1st letter, it is new, but not new.
What does this riddle mean?
Why is it so very important?
This is from Francis Schaeffer’s The Mark of a Christian.
We cannot expect the world to judge us on doctrine for the world cares nothing about doctrine. But Jesus did give the mark that will arrest the attention of the modern man….What is it? The love that true Christians show for each other and not just for their own party. If we do not love, however, they have the right to assume we are not a Christian. What makes the world sit up and take notice is true love between Christians.
Please watch the following trailer, and if possible, the whole movie sometime in the new two weeks. It’s appropriate for more mature children. Eric Liddell certainly lived out the new commandment, demonstrating the mark of a Christian, and the world sat up and took notice. This is about the latter half of his life. Chariots of Fire is about the first half of his life.
God Hunt Sunday:
1. How did you experience the risenness of Christ this week?
Monday: Washing Feet
2. Read John 13:1-5
A. According to verse 1, what time was it, and what did Jesus intend to show “his own?”
B. According to verse 3, what time was it and what did Jesus do?
3. What did He tell them in John 13:14?
4. Read the following and then share why you think Jesus washed the feet of the future leaders of the Church.
5. There are many leaders on this blog. How might you apply this specifically?
Tuesday: Jesus’ Last Prayer For Us: That the world may know
6. According to John 17:9, for whom is Jesus praying here?
7. Read John 17:20-21
A. Who else is Jesus praying for here according to verse 20?
B. What specifically does He ask and why according to verse 21?
Meditate on the following From Francis Schaeffer:
This does not mean we must agree on everything, but love in everything. If I fail in my love toward my brother, the world will not believe the Father sent the Son, but that Jesus was just a man like us.
I have observed one thing among true Christians in their differences in many countries: What divides and severs true Christian groups and Christians – what leaves a bitterness that can last for twenty, thirty, or forty years (or for fifty or sixty years in a son’s memory) is not the issue of the doctrine or belief which caused the differences in the first place. Invariably it is the lack of love and the bitter things that are said by true Christians in the midst of differences. These stick in the mind like glue. …It is these things that cause the stench that the world can smell in the church of Jesus Christ among those who are really true Christians.
8. Comment on the above. Take it to the Lord in prayer. Share your thoughts.
9. From what you know about Eric Liddell, how did he show this mark to the world? (Feel free to skip if you don’t know much about his life.)
Wednesday: Even as We Are One
Prepare your heart with this:
This prayer of Jesus for us is so deep. It is about loving one another, but it is deeper still. It’s learning how to love as God loves, as the Father loved the Son, as the Son loved the Father — so they were perfectly one. I feel like I’m getting into the 7th heaven and beyond my understanding, but let’s try to plumb the depths together. Jesus talks about the glory God gave to Him and that He has given to us. It makes me think of Lewis’s famous sermon: The Weight of Glory. Jesus had “weight” like no other who walked the earth, yet as we become like Him we too have weight. Kathy and Tim Keller went to listen to a series of young talented preachers. They were very good, but when they left, Kathy said, “Yet they do not have weight.” One of the tests of a good sermon is that it should not be forgettable — fly away because it has no weight. Weight comes with suffering. I believe that as we die to our idols, we become increasingly one with God, and have His weight. Lewis put it this way:
“It is a serious thing to live in a society of possible gods and goddesses, to remember that the dullest most uninteresting person you can talk to may one day be a creature which, if you saw it now, you would be strongly tempted to worship, or else a horror and a corruption such as you now meet, if at all, only in a nightmare.”
10. How might this realization help you to view your brother or sister in Christ?
11. Read John 17:22-23
A. Meditate on verse 22. What thoughts do you have on what this means?
B. Meditate on verse 23. What thoughts do you have on what this means?
12. Jesus repeats these thoughts in the closing of HIs prayer in verse 26. What does He say and what do you think He means?
Thursday: New, Yet Not New
How to understand John’s riddle that this is a new yet not new commandment? I am quite sure he means, in part, that now that we have seen Jesus live out love, we know better how to love. I also think it may mean that now that we understand truly what it means to be adopted into God’s family, we should have a special love for our brothers and sisters. That seems to be echoed in the New Testament. It would be ugly if we just loved them, but we do seem to be called to a special love for one another so that the world may know.
13. What are we told to do in Leviticus 19:18? How can you better live this out?
14. Read 1 John 2:7-8. How do you interpret this riddle?
15. Read 1 John 2:9-11 and find both the warnings and the encouragements.
Friday: How Is It Between Us?
This from Francis Schaeffer:
When we have shown a lack of love toward the other, we are called by God to go and say, “I’m sorry…I really am sorry. If I am not willing to say: “I’m sorry,” when I’ve wronged somebody else – especially when I have not loved him – I have not even started to think about the meaning of a Christian oneness which the world can see. …How often, in the power of the Holy Spirit, have we gone to Christians in our own group and said, “I’m sorry”? How much time have we spent reestablishing contact with those in other groups, saying to them, “I’m sorry for what I’ve done, what I’ve said, or what I’ve written”?
16. We are going to spend all of next week on how to do an effective apology, but this is to whet your taste. Share your thoughts on the above.
17. How does Jesus’ model of foot washing give light to this?
18. Listen to this from Sara Groves and answer: How is it between You and me Lord? And how is this affecting my relationship with others?
19. How would the Lord have you apply this?