Lenten Reflections

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John 13:15-20

February 20, 2024
John 13:15-20

15 For I have given you an example, that you also should do just as I have done to you. 16 Truly, truly, I say to you, a servant is not greater than his master, nor is a messenger greater than the one who sent him. 17 If you know these things, blessed are you if you do them. 18 I am not speaking of all of you; I know whom I have chosen. But the Scripture will be fulfilled, ‘He who ate my bread has lifted his heel against me.’ 19 I am telling you this now, before it takes place, that when it does take place you may believe that I am he. 20 Truly, truly, I say to you, whoever receives the one I send receives me, and whoever receives me receives the one who sent me.”


Jesus has given us an example that we should follow it. Of course, it is one thing to know this, and another to do it. Jesus suggests it is the one who actually does what he says who is blessed. Jesus knows those who truly belong to him (those whom he has chosen) and those (like Judas) who ultimately reject him despite giving every appearance of being a faithful follower. Regardless of what a person might claim about his or her relationship to Jesus, we can infer that no one has truly learned to follow Jesus as Lord until they are willing to do what he says. In this case, that means abandoning all thought of power and position and humbly serving our brothers and sisters in Christ, recognizing that we represent Jesus to one another. That is why Jesus solemnly tells us that whoever receives the one Jesus has sent, receives Jesus himself. The way we treat one another reflects our true attitude toward Jesus. As John writes, “He who does not love his brother whom he has seen cannot love God whom he has not seen” (1 John 4.20).

What excuses do you offer for not following Jesus’ example?