Summary: Finding fulfillment happens in ways we might not expect. This message explores one of the servant King's last teachings...on servanthood.
7 Essential Question: Week 5 - What Brings Fulfillment?
We’ve been looking at important questions for the past number of weeks. We’ve considered the truth that God meets us in the midst of our brokenness and sin, long before we start to get ourselves together, and he calls us to Himself in Jesus, accepts us as we are, and calls to live our lives very differently in Him. That was the experience of the woman caught in adultery in John chapter 8
We’ve also learned that loving God with absolutely everything in us, and loving our neighbours as we love ourselves, is the key to understanding what matters most in life.
We’ve asked: Who is Jesus? We’ve learned that in order to experience life as we’re intended, we really need to accept Him on His terms, for who He says He is: The Son of God, the Messiah, the One who has come to us as God in the flesh.
If we want to experience eternal life, we must do so on His terms. Jesus puts this rather bluntly, actually:
“Do you believe that I am the one I claim to be? If you don’t, you will certainly die in your sins.” John 8:24 (NIRV) There is a way to God, and it is through Jesus alone.
And last week we explore the question: “Where is God?” We learned that all we need to know of God is discovered by looking at the life of Jesus and coming into a relationship with Jesus through faith in His atoning sacrifice.
That’s the first and most vital, most tested and true aspect of living life to the full.
Today we’ll continue this series by thinking about what Jesus taught us about living beyond the basics of living. What are some of the basics that we need to live? We need certain things in order to survive, don’t we? Housing, food, clothing, our health.
Those are basics that we all need, and without them we cannot live, [especially in the Canadian climate]. But those things keep us alive. None of them necessarily bring us joy or purpose.
When we don’t have them, the absence of them is overwhelming and stifling. When we do have them, we’re ok...ok but the meaning and substance of life is not in those things.
The Message paraphrase of Jesus words puts it this way: “I came so they can have real and eternal life, more and better life than they ever dreamed of”.
Deeply tied to discovering fulfillment through coming to Jesus Christ and living in Him in faith is the subject of our Scripture reading from John chapter today.
Can we please all stand, if able, to read: 1 It was just before the Passover Festival. Jesus knew that the hour had come for him to leave this world and go to the Father. Having loved his own who were in the world, he loved them to the end. 2 The evening meal was in progress, and the devil had already prompted Judas, the son of Simon Iscariot, to betray Jesus. 3 Jesus knew that the Father had put all things under his power, and that he had come from God and was returning to God; John 13:1-5, 12-17
We’re reading about Jesus last hours and minutes on this planet before His crucifixion, before His murder at the hands of sinful men that He knew was coming. Boy, did He know it was coming.
If you think about this - what would you want your last words to be, if you knew that you were very near the end...they’d be different for all of us, but they would likely be what you considered to be the most important message, even legacy that you would want to leave behind.
Continuing with our passage:
“4 so he got up from the meal, took off his outer clothing, and wrapped a towel around his waist.5 After that, he poured water into a basin and began to wash his disciples’ feet, drying them with the towel that was wrapped around him.
12 When he had finished washing their feet, he put on his clothes and returned to his place. “Do you understand what I have done for you?” he asked them. 13 “You call me ‘Teacher’ and ‘Lord,’ and rightly so, for that is what I am. 14 Now that I, your Lord and Teacher, have washed your feet, you also should wash one another’s feet. 15 I have set you an example that you should do as I have done for you. 16 Very truly I tell you, no servant is greater than his master, nor is a messenger greater than the one who sent him. 17 Now that you know these things, you will be blessed if you do them.