"THE SERVANT IS NOT GREATER THAN HIS LORD"
Scripture Reading: John 13: 1-17
Now before the feast of the passover, when Jesus knew that his hour was come that he should depart out of this world unto the Father, having loved his own which were in the world, he loved them unto the end. And supper being ended, the devil having now put into the heart of Judas Iscariot, Simon's son, to betray him; Jesus knowing that the Father had given all things into his hands, and that he was come from God, and went to God; He riseth from supper, and laid aside his garments; and took a towel, and girded himself. After that he poureth water into a bason, and began to wash the disciples' feet, and to wipe them with the towel wherewith he was girded. Then cometh he to Simon Peter: and Peter saith unto him, Lord, dost thou wash my feet? Jesus answered and said unto him, What I do thou knowest not now; but thou shalt know hereafter. Peter saith unto him, Thou shalt never wash my feet. Jesus answered him, If I wash thee not, thou hast no part with me. Simon Peter saith unto him, Lord, not my feet only, but also my hands and my head. Jesus saith to him, He that is washed needeth not save to wash his feet, but is clean every whit: and ye are clean, but not all. For he knew who should betray him; therefore said he, Ye are not all clean. So after he had washed their feet, and had taken his garments, and was set down again, he said unto them, Know ye what I have done to you? Ye call me Master and Lord: and ye say well; for so I am. If I then, your Lord and Master, have washed your feet; ye also ought to wash one another's feet. For I have given you an example, that ye should do as I have done to you. Verily, verily, I say unto you, The servant is not greater than his lord; neither he that is sent greater than he that sent him. If ye know these things, happy are ye if ye do them.
In the verses above the Lord Jesus demonstrated a work in righteousness that glares in the spirit but is quite obscured to the flesh. Many have copies his act of humility and made it a ritual after the flesh. His act was most humble and consistent with all His acts as the Lord from heaven. "He took on the form of a servant._" As seen in the Scripture reading, Peter was so moved by the Lord's humility in washing the disciples' feet that he respectfully rebuked Him. Peter changed his mind immediately when Jesus said, "If I wash thee not, thou hast no part with me." This point cannot be overlooked by the believer. To fully absorb it, let us look again at Jesus' actions in preparation to wash the disciples' feet.
He riseth from supper, and laid aside his garments; and took a towel, and girded himself. By laying aside His garments, Jesus was about to show His disciples that He was putting away any identity with the world. As Job said, "Naked came I out of my mother's womb, and naked shall I return thither: the LORD gave, and the LORD hath taken away; blessed be the name of the LORD." The word "thither" used here is considered one with Jehovah, the Existing One. All things spiritual! Jesus girded himself with a towel. The Greek meaning of towel is a linen cloth. Linen is symbolic of righteousness as noted in Revelation 19:8 where the Lamb's wife is adorned in fine linen. It adds, "the fine linen is the righteousness of saints."
Jesus' act of humility teaches us to serve one another from our heavenly position in Him and that our service should always be that of righteousness. Long story short, it means ministering Christ Who has been made righteousness unto us according to 1 Corinthians 1:30. We minister Christ by Christ and through Christ because our position is in Christ. How much of what we do as believes actually ministers to others in righteousness? It is easy to fire off opinions and actions in self-righteousness but are we willing to cast off our garments of self and minister to others as priests unto God and Father? Quoting our Lord, "The servant is not greater than his Lord."