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Grace Bible Chapel of Springfield, Illinois
|APRIL 5, 2015
|APRIL 12, 2015
|APRIL 19, 2015
|APRIL 26, 2015
|MAY 3, 2014
“Thou shalt never wash my feet.” (John 13:8)
The Lord Jesus had just girded Himself with a towel and filled a basin with water, preparatory to
washing the disciples’ feet. When He came to Peter, He met this emphatic refusal, “Thou shalt
never wash my feet.”
Why? Why didn’t Peter want to submit to this gracious ministry from the Lord? On the one hand,
there may have been a sense of unworthiness; he did not consider himself worthy to be served by
the Lord. But there is also the real possibility that Peter’s attitude was one of pride and
independence. He did not want to be on the receiving end. He did not want to be dependent on
others for help.
This same attitude keeps many people from being saved. They want to earn salvation or deserve it,
but to receive it as a free gift of grace is beneath their dignity. They don’t want to feel indebted to
God. But “no one who is too proud to be infinitely in debt will ever be a Christian” (James S.
There is also a lesson here for those who are already Christians. We have all met believers who are
compulsive givers. They are always doing for others. Their lives are poured out in service for their
relatives and neighbors. Their generosity deserves high praise. But there is a fly in the ointment!
They never want to be on the receiving end. They never want anyone to do anything for them. They
have learned how to give generously but they have never learned how to receive graciously. They
enjoy the blessing of ministering to others, but they deny to others that same blessing.
Paul proved himself to be a gracious recipient of gifts from the Philippians. In thanking them, he
said, “Not because I desire a gift; but I desire fruit that may abound to your account” (Phil. 4:17).
He thought of their reward more than of his own need.
“It is told of Bishop Westcott that at the end of his life he said he had made one great mistake, for,
while he had always been willing to do for others to the limit of his ability, he had never been
willing to let others do for him, and as a result some element of sweetness and completeness was
missing. He had not allowed himself the discipline of receiving many kindnesses which could not
be repaid” (J. O. Sanders).
An unknown poet summed it up well when he wrote:
I hold him great, who, for love’s sake,
Can give with generous, earnest will;
But he who takes for love’s sweet sake,
I think I hold more generous still.
Below is a meditation by William MacDonald 1917 - 2007
RICHARD COOLEY will be our speaker on April 25, 2015 for
the Family Bible Hour service at 11:00 a.m. Richard and his
wife Nancy have fellowshipped at Grace Bible Chapel from
childhood. They have two adult children and two
grandchildren. Richard is a graduate of Bob Jones University
and a retired art teacher. He is also a teacher in one of our
elective adult Bible classes currently studying in the Acts of
the Apostles. He and his wife take part in our singing groups.
Richard is also an avid golfer.