Day 17

Servant of All

from the John reading plan


John 13:1-38, Mark 9:35, Romans 3:21-26, Psalm 31:9-10

BY Guest Writer

Text: John 13:1-38, Mark 9:35, Romans 3:21-26, Psalm 31:9-10

I’ve heard it said that suffering reveals the real you. What comes out of our mouths when life squeezes us in its vise grip is the stuff we’re really made of.

At the Last Supper, we find Jesus in the tightest situation imaginable. He knows unthinkable suffering is right around the corner. Since His disciples are still presuming He is going to lead a government takeover, it’s a burden He must carry alone. Jesus knows there will be no military coup. He will secure the Kingdom victory, but through suffering—not conquest.

In that crucible of suffering, the real Jesus shines through. We don’t catch one hint of self-pity or bitterness in His words or actions. He would soon be poured out on our behalf, yet Jesus remained faithful to who He is and what He came to do.

He never stopped teaching. Using bread and wine for an object lesson of cosmic consequences, Jesus taught truths in advance that His disciples would not grasp until He was gone (John 12:16). As modern Christ followers, we have access to this Upper Room as a classroom. We’re able to wrestle with the lessons of His atoning sacrifice every time we come to take communion.

He never stopped serving. Knowing that within hours His own would be nailed to a tree, Jesus took the time to wash His disciples’ feet. “So if I, your Lord and Teacher, have washed your feet, you also ought to wash one another’s feet. For I have given you an example, that you also should do just as I have done for you” (John 13:14-15). This moment wasn’t mere ritual. Jesus was showing them how to care for one another after He departed.

He never stopped loving. When I study the Last Supper, I am most grateful for this truth: “Having loved his own who were in the world, he loved them to the end” (John 13:1). To the end. Our Savior never stopped loving the undeserving, helpless sinners He came to die for. He never chose hatred or contempt. He didn’t shame or ostracize Judas, the one who would sell Him out for a few silver coins. Instead of pointing His finger at him, Jesus offered him bread.

When hard-pressed on every side, Jesus never resented the sacrifice He chose to make on our behalf. It was in His suffering that our Savior displayed His true strength.

“But he was pierced because of our rebellion,
crushed because of our iniquities;
punishment for our peace was on him,
and we are healed by his wounds.”
– Isaiah 53:5

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Erin Davis is an author, blogger, and speaker who loves to see women of all ages run to the deep well of God’s Word. When she’s not writing, you can find Erin chasing chickens and children on her small farm in the Midwest.

Post Comments (67)

67 thoughts on "Servant of All"

  1. Taquia says:

    This passage makes me reflect on what am I showing when life’s circumstances squeeze me. Do I behave as Jesus did, or do I resort to some other ways? I’ll definitely keep this in mind as I strive to live more like Him. Even when the trials of life weigh on me, I MUST strive to keep the mind, actions, and love of Christ.

  2. Danya Ho says:

    When hard-pressed on every side, Jesus never resented the sacrifice He chose to make on our behalf. It was in His suffering that our Savior displayed His true strength.

  3. Kylee says:

    Thank you, Jesus, for loving me until the end. For not giving up on me despite my selfish loser ways! Your life showed us how to love and how to serve the people you put it all on the line to save; your death gave us hope for a future of forever with you. We aren’t worthy of this devotion, but Lord that you would take hold of our lives and make us wholly devoted to serving others as we wait for the day when we’ll be forever with you. Thank you, thank you, thank you!

  4. jenai a says:

    Thank you Erin for this! I thought your discussion was on point and well said. God Bless!

  5. Alexandria says:

    I love this! I taught he suffering servant prophecy from Isaiah the other week – I wish I had given them this portion of John the following day. God is truly amazing!

  6. Cheri says:

    Loving this study!!! The thing that really stood out to me today…. well, actually there are two things… first, these verses:

    Psalm 31:9-10
    “Be gracious to me, O Lord, for I am in distress;
    my eye is wasted from grief;
    my soul and my body also.
    For my life is spent with sorrow,
    and my years with sighing;
    my strength fails because of my iniquity,
    and my bones waste away.”

    What spoke to me the most in those verses right now is in the last part of verse 10, “my strength fails because of my iniquity.” Some days I feel like I am so weak… I have the hardest time staying strong when faced with difficult situations, and I’m confident Satan has latched onto this fact, so he places just the right temptations in front of me to make sure I stay weak. But then I read a study like this, and I’m reminded, through these words, of Jesus’ steadfastness even in the midst of the most terrible suffering. “In that crucible of suffering, the real Jesus shines through. We don’t catch one hint of self-pity or bitterness in His words or actions. He would soon be poured out on our behalf, yet Jesus remained faithful to who He is and what He came to do.” That’s the other thing that stood out to me. Those words, “We don’t catch one hint of self-pity or bitterness in His words or actions.” Can I really grasp the magnitude of those words? He knew He was about to sacrifice His life on our behalf, and He didn’t have himself a good ol’ pity party… and yet, I face even the smallest inconvenience and it rocks my world. Father God, I want to be like Jesus!! When faced with circumstances beyond my control, I want to react with the knowledge that You are in control… You hold all things in Your hand, and You love me and You have a perfect plan for my life. Remind me of that daily, Lord, and remind me that You are with me and all I have to do is call out to You… for help, for peace, for grace and mercy, for strength… Thank you that Your Word tells us when we ask we will receive!!

  7. Heather Fringer says:

    I loved how you reminded us that He never stopped teaching and He never stopped serving even though He knew that His life would be ending in a couple of hours.

  8. Leslie says:

    Still catching up on my reading. Sorry I’m late to the party but I have to say that I was brought to tears this morning as I read this all too familiar passage. I could feel the heaviness. I know that when I am in a room where I know someone doesn’t care for me or has gossiped about me, the feelings are intense. The hurt is palpable. I could feel jesus’ hurt and yet, as so many of you have pointed out, he still loved and still served. What a great reminder. And I can only act in this love thru the transforming power of Jesus. It is his presence, the Holy Spirit moving, that makes that change and shows me how to do this. Thank you, Jesus, for your example! You are the Great Servant and Master Teacher.

    1. April Heather says:

      Me too –tears. And late to the party. ❤️

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