Most assuredly, I say to you, a servant is not greater than his master; nor is he who is sent greater than he who sent him. (John 13:16)
Our Lord is not talking “rocket science” here. He is not speaking in parables here. He is not telling us some great mystery that requires “revelation knowledge” to grasp. It’s simple straight forward common sense knowledge. So simple it’s difficult to find any other words to use to say it differently.
Our Lord Jesus acknowledged that our God and Father IS greater than He because it was our God and Father Who did the sending (John 8:42 & 14:28). There shouldn’t be any questions about who is the greater between us and our Lord Jesus, even if He hadn’t sent us (John 17:18-20). The problem is the “grand canyon” between how our Lord views His relationship and responsibility to the One Who sent Him and how we view our relationship and responsibility to the One Who sent us.
As to relationship, our Lord Jesus said many times that He and our God and Father are “One”. When I looked that word up, it had a one word definition: “One”. Who knew? Right away that starts to mess with our minds because our minds tell us that that means that They are the same and if They are the same, how can One be greater than the Other? Never mind that we know and are assured that there is only One God. Don’t worry about it saints; this is where the finite and the Infinite separate; this is where belief and trust kicks in and understanding is nowhere to be found.
For the sake of “The Father and the Lord Jesus are ONE” discussion, let’s make it easy on ourselves and zero in on the fact that our God and Father and our Lord Jesus Christ are single minded; single purposed with no disagreement. Man! That was close!
Well saints, now that we’ve caught our breaths, what are we going to do with; and how are we going to interpret the prayer that our Lord Jesus prayed for us?
John 17: 20 “I do not pray for these alone, but also for those who will believe in Me through their word; 21 that they all may be one, as You, Father, are in Me, and I in You; that they also may be one in Us, that the world may believe that You sent Me.
We might attempt to say that, when we all get to Heaven, we’ll all be one then. The problem with that is that the world won’t see it and believe that our God and Father sent our Lord Jesus. So, whatever it means, it’s in the here and now. Not only that, 1 Corinthians 2:16 tells us that “we have the mind of Christ”, present tense.
What is the world seeing when it looks at those who claim to be followers of our Lord Jesus? Forget the world! What do we see ourselves? I’m not sure if anyone could claim that there is oneness in any of the local groups much less the Body of Christ at large. Whatever the reason is for this distortion, our Lord, God and Father is not pleased. If “we have the mind of Christ”, we shouldn’t be please either.
Our present actions as “sent” believers say that we think that we are greater than our Lord Who sent us because we act as though we have the authority to change His program and He has to go along with it. Our Lord’s testimony to the One Who sent Him was “I have glorified You on the earth. I have finished the work which You have given Me to do”. Shouldn’t we be able to say the same to the One Who sent us?
If our Lord’s testimony to the One Who sent Him is not the number one aim and desire of every one of us, in whom the Holy Spirit lives, we cannot claim to be led or filled with our Lord’s Holy Spirit. When our Father’s Holy Spirit is in charge, the work gets done the way our God and Father intended and the world sees exactly what they’re supposed to see. If we can see that we’re not operating with the mind of Christ, we know that our God and Father saw it first; and if we are not willing to judge ourselves and do the right things, we leave Him no choice but to make it right by force.
For the time has come for judgment to begin at the house of God; and if it begins with us first, what will be the end of those who do not obey the gospel of God? (1 Peter 4:17)
We’ll no longer be able to justify leaving things as they are for peace sake or “going along to git along”. “For, if we would judge ourselves, we would not be judged.” (1 Corinthians 11:31)
Think over these things I am saying; understand them and grasp their application, for the Lord will grant you full insight and understanding in everything. (2 Timothy 2:7)
Whether therefore you eat or drink or whatever you do, do it all to the glory of God. (1 Corinthians 10:31)