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John 13:13-17

13:13 You call me ‘Teacher’ and ‘Lord,’ and do so correctly, 1  for that is what I am. 2  13:14 If I then, your Lord and Teacher, have washed your feet, you too ought to wash one another’s feet. 13:15 For I have given you an example 3  – you should do just as I have done for you. 13:16 I tell you the solemn truth, 4  the slave 5  is not greater than his master, nor is the one who is sent as a messenger 6  greater than the one who sent him. 13:17 If you understand 7  these things, you will be blessed if you do them.

1 tn Or “rightly.”

2 tn Grk “and I am these things.”

3 sn I have given you an example. Jesus tells his disciples after he has finished washing their feet that what he has done is to set an example for them. In the previous verse he told them they were to wash one another’s feet. What is the point of the example? If it is simply an act of humble service, as most interpret the significance, then Jesus is really telling his disciples to serve one another in humility rather than seeking preeminence over one another. If, however, the example is one of self-sacrifice up to the point of death, then Jesus is telling them to lay down their lives for one another (cf. 15:13).

4 tn Grk “Truly, truly, I say to you.”

5 tn See the note on the word “slaves” in 4:51.

6 tn Or “nor is the apostle” (“apostle” means “one who is sent” in Greek).

7 tn Grk “If you know.”

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