Summary: Christ teaches the way to live life in the Penthouse is by starting at the bottom.
The high value of living low
2 Peter 1:5-8 and 10b
Intro: Word “love” is agape = love revealed by not doing what the person loved wants, but doing what the One who loves deems is needed by the one loved.
John 3:16 – not what man wanted but what God saw man needed.
John 13:34-35 we are commanded to love.
When we see this list in 2 Peter and realize love is the capstone to all these other virtues. It is not listed last because it is the least. The others are actually foundation and love is the pinnacle point. It is the penthouse – it is the highest level you can live.
In John chapter 13 the context of the command to love must be observed to understand what kind of love Jesus is commanding us to release into the world which will validate that we really are Xns.
Background: Passover meal preparation. This is a big deal to Jews. They all wanted to sit next to Jesus for this important occasion. I can see them now. They know the meal and the room has been prepared for them. They enter the room as invited guests. Probably looked around for someone to wash their feet before eating which was the custom. Usually a house slave person would do this. No one was there. So they sat down at the Lord’s Table with dirty feet and ate the meal. No one was about to wash the others feet and maybe lose their seating order position. After the meal Jesus gets up with servants towel and begins.
Read verse 3-7. Pour water into basin now and take up towel around waist.
Verse 7 “You do not understand now…”
I don’t understand why it takes so long for prayers to get answered? I don’t understand why some prayers are not answered? I don’t understand why we don’t see more miracles? I don’t understand why our church not overflowing, struggles, etc?
Lot of things God does or allows you will not understand now.
Verse 8 read. Because Peter does not understand he is refusing to allow God to work through a humiliating process.
Verse 9-10 read. Jesus explains salvation cleansing and sanctification cleansing.
Read verse 11. Judas goes through the cleansing ceremony but not let it touch his heart. Just got in line. Faked devotion.
Illusration: There is at times a little bit of Judas in all of us. Get it out! If you don’t you will betray Jesus soon.
Read 18-22. Who will be the one who will betray the Lord in this very room? (Walk through aisle). Who will be the next one that will allow Satan to enter their heart and cause trouble, strife within the body of Christ?
Or maybe you will be on the receiving end. Maybe you will experience a little of the fellowship of His sufferings and know what it is like to be betrayed by your brethren. Who will be the one to betray you and talk evil of you and deny you the love of God?
Jesus identified who it would be. Read 23-29.
Jesus unmistakably pointed out Judas. How could they have not understood? They like us began their own reasoning. “Not mean Judas, he is a good guy, good worker, little rough around edges maybe, little hard to get to know but his heart is right. Then the most often quoted human excuse for not confronting a sinful person, “I’m not going to judge! Yet it was Jesus who called him a devil!
Read verse 30. “It was night.” – not just literal but also symbolic. To leave the fellowship of Jesus is to exchange the light for the darkness. That is exactly what Judas did.
Read 31. How will Jesus be glorified? Soon no longer be one human body but will be glorified through His people the body of Christ. They will glorify Him by expanding His love through their lives.
Read 34-35. Command not just feeling. It is a decision to relate to one another without schisms, disputes dividing us, without criticisms, bitterness, unforgiveness or anything contrary to the Spirit of Christ.
“New commandment” – new level of love. Servant love, selfless love. Which when we do it the world will quickly recognize we are real. It will validate our witness.
Concl: Don’t say you love Jesus and the next words come out of your mouth you are bad mouthing His bride, (other Xns).
Illustration: My relationship with my mom and my wife when first married was very rocky to say the least. Pam and mom feuded often. My mom said she would try and break us up. I was torn in two. Eventually had to cut apron strings. Mom would start say something negative about Pam and I would stop her. I would say to my mom whom I loved, “If you want anything to do with me you will not ever say anything negative about my wife again. I love you but I am married and she comes first and we will always be married. You make a choice whether or not you want to have anything else to do with me. Don’t call me anymore if you don’t change the way you feel.” She slammed phone down. It was several weeks before she called again. Change happened slowly. But through prayer and taking a stand this situation has turned around 180 degrees. Twenty five years later, now when my mom calls she talks with Pam and hardly ever talks with me! They are closer in relationship than I have ever been with my mom.