Now we come to the whole point of Jesus’ ministry it seems. (At least for us, as believers and followers of the Lord Jesus Christ.)
“That you love one another as I have loved you.”
This is such a wonderful message from Jesus. I love that He speaks to us as “little children.” (v33)
He points out He will not be here with them any longer in flesh, so they must learn of His love by the Spirit of Christ. (“AS I have loved you.”)
In the opening verses of John 13 we learned Jesus loved them, “to the end.” (Which actually means He loved them ‘to the uttermost.’) (In other words, He could not have loved them any more than He did.)
The example had been given, and the bar had been set. It is obviously not thought by Jesus to be too high an example for us, since as mentioned He appeals to us as ‘little children.’
The problem is not that the example He set was too high for us to reach, but too low.
This act of washing the feet of those who need their feet washed is troublesome. This was the action of the lowest house slave, not one seeking to demonstrate their feelings of fondness toward their fellow man. How can one demonstrate feelings of fondness by performing humiliating action which takes love off equal footing and places the one demonstrating love on a lesser plane?
This is a great philosophical conundrum for those seeking a higher Spiritual place in life. How can I gain by going lower than I began? And how is that loving?
But this is not to be thought out – it is simply to be done. By those who think like children. Just do it. Love has everything to do with action which places the one being loved higher than the one giving love. Intentionally so.
Simply put: this is how Jesus followers are to be recognized.