Having Loved His Own: Squaring Off with the Serpent

George Marshall - 10/16/2022


Call to worship: Philippians 2:1-11

Text: John 13:1-20


As Jesus transitions from public confrontations to private preparations with his disciples, all are gathered for a meal where John showcases Jesus' love for his disciples. Jesus is like no other. He is not like a Roman governor, nor is he like the priests, the synagogue leaders or the Pharisees. He is everything that he said he was. And he calls his disciples to love one another and follow his example of humble service. But as he prepares the disciples for the impending conflict, it is now time to address the elephant in the room. Not all who have tasted of his glory are his own. And even among those who are, there are serious breakdowns between head and heart - between their knowledge of the Lord of Scripture and his actual lordship. Satan longs to destroy God's work, but Jesus in trusting and determined dependence and submission to the Father is well prepared for the fight.

Sermon Outline:

  1. The definite plan and foreknowledge of God (vv1-4)
  2. Knowing and trusting the real Jesus (vv5-11)
  3. Demonstrating love in leadership (vv12-20)
    • Leading in love
    • Following in love


Discussion Questions:

  1. Read John 13:1-20 and then, Acts 2:22-41 with an eye to similar thoughts and emphases.
  2. The introductory verses set the stage for the entire passage. Who does John show is in control? Who is responsible for the unfoldoing events? How does John relate knowledge, will, and power through the those mentioned in the narrative? (vv1-3)
  3. John relates Jesus' impending return to the Father with his washing the disicples' feet. How are the two related? What motivates Peter's response(s) to Jesus? Is Peter an example to be followed in this passage? (vv4-11)
  4. Jesus tells us that his actions are actions to be followed. What do we see here that suggests that he is generalizing to a mindset and practice, rather than establishing a normative/ritualized practice (foot washing)? How is this consistent with John's testimony of Jesus throughout the book? (vv12-18)
  5. How does John point to the activity of the Father in this passage? Jesus has only hinted at the work of the spirit so far in John's gospel. What do we learn of the activity and authority of the Spirit in this passage? How is this related to the relationship between God the Father and Jesus the Son? (vv19-20)
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