- Is motivated by love to serve others (vv. 1, 2).Jesus’ love was undeserved, unending, unconditional, and unselfish. It was not the worthiness or the merits of the disciples that drove Jesus to serve them. He wasn’t expressing gratitude, but grace. Love made Him serve His disciples. Think about it: Jesus even washed the feet of Judas Iscariot, the man who would betray him and have him killed the next day.
- POSSESS a security that allows him to serve others (v. 3).Jesus knew who He was, and He was secure enough to get down on the floor and wash His disciples’ feet. He didn’t have to prove anything. In fact, He had nothingto prove, nothing to lose, and nothing to hide. The insecure are into titles. The secure are into towels.
- INITIATE servant-leadership to others (vv. 4, 5).Jesus didn’t wait for someone to clarify protocol. He saw a need and met it. No one else had volunteered for the “foot-washing job that night”- so Jesus made an object lesson out of the event. He started something that He hoped would be passed down from those twelve disciples to others (See John 13:12–15). Foot washing will never be in vogue.
- RECEIVE servant-ministry from others (vv. 6, 7).A servant’s heart exposes pride in others. Peter had a hard time letting Jesus serve Him. He still possessed a worldly mindset that assumed that someone of Jesus’ caliber should never stoop to wash feet. Sometimes leaders must learn to let others serve them. Because they become so used to serving others, it is difficult for them to relax and receive. In this instance, Jesus was asking Simon Peter to sit and allow ….
- WANT nothing to hinder their relationship with God (vv. 8, 9).Peter moved from one extreme to the other. If Jesus was going to wash Him, he didn’t want to miss anything He might do. He wanted Jesus to wash his entire body. Simon Peter exhibits a great attitude here. If Jesus was giving away, he wanted to receive all that Jesus had to give; he didn’t want anything to stand between him and his Lord.
- TEACH servanthood by their example (vv. 12, 15).Afterward, Jesus discussed the meaning of His foot washing. He reminded them that the Master and Lord had just washed their feet, so no position should prevent them from doing it for someone else. Jesus let them know that if the Master washed their feet, they ought to imitate Him. His model was to be reproduced. In fact, His example was much more powerful than a lecture about the principles of service. Actions speak more loudly than words.
- LIVE a blessed life (vv. 16, 17).Jesus reminded them they were blessed if they obeyed Him in this lifestyle. The greatest blessing follows those who step out by faith and do the opposite of what the world is doing. God blesses those who “go counter-cultural” and serve people with no thought of getting something in return from them. The return comes in the form of God’s blessing.