In John 13, we see a stark contrast between Christ and fallen mankind. Chapter 12 shows us that Christ is supremely worthy of all glory, but the shocking thing about chapter 13 is that this supremely glorious Christ stoops down and washes the filthy feet of His disciples. It is the ultimate act of humility and it dispels any pretension that the believer is above any act of service. Christ displays ultimate humility by serving others.
Then, John turns to show us Judas, a man whose name immediately evokes thoughts of betrayal and deceit. The thing is, Judas acted out of a motivation for self-interest. He put his own desires above that of his friends. While we rightly condemn Judas' actions as truly despicable, the sobering reality is that the same heart attitude pops up inside us all from time to time. We, like Judas, follow our own self-interest above all else and sometimes at the cost of others.
The striking thing about John 13 is this night and day contrast between what motivated Christ and what motivated Judas. Christ, who was worthy of all things, served. Judas, who deserved nothing, exalted himself at all costs. Thankfully, Christ never fell into sinful self-service. He served with an upright heart. And that righteousness can be ours through faith in Him alone. But that faith changes us. With such contrasting motivations on display in John 13, our desire should be to have Christ's heart and not a self-serving heart like Judas. What heart attitude do you find when you examine your own heart? Lets continue to contrast the day from the night as we serve one another for the glory of God.
The Quill and the Sword is the blog of Pastor Phil Golden Jr. The quill represents the writings of the author and the sword is the Word of God. This blog is committed to producing engaging articles that are biblically based. The painting above is Eugene Siberdt's Martin Luther Translating the Bible.