Two basins – Jesus and Pilate
Springfield Heights Mennonite Church
March 9, 2008
Membership Reception & Foot Washing
Wir heissen alle Gottesdienstbesucher
und auch besonders alle Gäste herzlich willkommen
in unserer Kirche.
Gebe Gott, daß diese Andacht
und die Gemeinschaft miteinander
uns alle zum Segen gereichen möchte.
Heute ist der 5. Sonntag in der Passionszeit.
Wir begleiten dem Herrn Jesus auf dem Weg zum Kreuz.
Heute werden wir daran erinnert,
daß er sich seiner göttlichen Gestalt entäusserte,
und Knechtsgestalt annahmen.
Er demütigte sich selbst und war gehorsam
bis in den Tod.
Das Becken für die Fusswaschung und das Handtuch
wollen unsere Aufmerksamkeit heute darauf richten,
daß Jesus, unser Herr und Meister,
unser aller Diener war,
und daß er uns befohlen hat,
als Bürger seines Reiches
einander so zu dienen,
wie Christus uns gedient hat.
Aufnahme in die Gemeinde
Jesus Christus, unser Herr und Meister,
hat die Gemeinde ins Dasein gerufen.
Die Gemeinde ist eine Glaubensfamilie,
in der wir hinein-wiedergeboren werden
durch die Taufe.
Die Gemeinde ist die Familie Gottes weltweit.
Sie ist zerstreut in der ganzen Welt,
wo Jesus Christus als Herr und Erlöser bezeugt wird.
Heute morgen haben wir die Freude,
fuenf (5) neue Mitglieder
in unserer Glaubensfamilie aufzunehmen.
Diese Geschwister haben unsere Gemeinde
schon eine zeitlang besucht – einige länger als andere.
Sie sind alle auf ihr persönliches Glaubensbekenntnis,
daß Jesus ihr Erlöser ist, getauft worden.
Wir freuen uns,
daß diese Geschwister
eine Verbindung mit unserer Gemeinde suchen,
und sich hier bei uns anschliessen wollen,
um gemeinsam mit uns
Gottes Reich an diesem Ort zu bauen.
Wir haben im Lehrdienst ihr Zeugnis entgegengenommen,
und wir stellen sie jetzt der Gemeinde vor
mit unserer Empfehlung zur Aufnahme.
Ich möchte die Kandidaten jetzt vorstellen,
und bitte sie nach vorne zu kommen.
Vorstellung der Kandidaten
Jacob & Aganetha Friesen
Wohnen jetzt schon einige Jahre in Winnipeg.
Sie haben schon frueher mal hier gewohnt,
und damals Glieder in der Elmwood MBG,
wo sie auch als Diakone gedient haben.
Sie waren inzwischen zurueck nach Paraguay gezogen,
und weil ihre Kinder alle hier in Canada sind,
haben sie sich entschlossen
ihr Heim wieder hier in Winnipeg zu machen.
Ihre letzte Gemeindezugehörigkeit war
in der MG Loma Plata in der Colonie Menno.
Ihre Zeugen sind: Helmut Sawatzky & Anton Funk
Patrick & Cordelia Friesen
Kommen aus der Menno Kolonie in Paraguay.
Sie wohnen seit fast einem Jahr in Winnipeg,
und sie haben zwei energievolle Kinder,
Sophia & Nadya.
Sie waren Gemeindeglieder in der Emanuel MG in LPl.
Ihre Zeugen sind Ronald & Sophie Wiebe und Albert Penner
Hilda rief mich am Freitag an, und sagte,
„Wie machen wir das wenn ich Sonntag nicht kann
In der Kirche sein?
Ich bin schon einige Tage ganz krank gewesen
mit der Grippe,
und das will nicht aufhören.“
(Wir freuen uns daß das soweit vorüber ist).
Hilda ist schon seit vielen Jahren ein „regelmässiger Gast“
in unserer Gemeinde.
Sie meinte, „das soll sich jetzt aufhören.
Ich will auch ‚dazu gehören’“.
Sie ist die Mutter von Wes & Jen, Erich & Helga,
und Alfred & Kathy Giesbrecht,
die Tochter von Aganetha Toews,
und Schwester von Vic, Frieda, und so weiter.
Als ihr Mann Cornelius Giesbrecht im Herbst starb,
wurde sie sich sofort einig,
daß sie sich wollte dieser Gemeinde anschliessen.
Sie haben als Familie die Wärme und Hilfe
Der Gemeinde sehr geschätzt.
Die Zeugen sind Gerhard Pries und David Zacharias
Bund der Mitgliedschaft
ihr habt ein Bekenntnis eures Glaubens abgelegt,
und wir haben die Empfehlung eurer Zeugen
Und so wollen wir Euch einige Fragen stellen,
die ihr mit Ja, mit Gottes Hilfe!
Lieber Bruder, liebe Schwester,
Willst du heute vor Gott und dieser Glaubensgemeinschaft
neu bezeugen daß Jesus Christus dein Herr
und persönlicher Heiland ist?
Willst du mit uns einen Bund machen,
Gott gemeinsam anzubeten
und gebetsvoll zu dienen
durch deine treue Mitarbeit
und Haushalterschaft in unserer Gemeinde?
Und willst du, in christlicher Gemeinschaft,
Liebe und Vergebung geben und empfangen,
und mit uns Freude und Leid teilen?
Wie antwortest du?
Ja, mit Gottes Hilfe!
Aufnahme – Zustimmung der Gemeinde
Als Gemeinde wollen wir unsere Zustimmung geben,
und euch unsere Aufnahme mitteilen.
Wir wollen unser Blättchen zur Hand nehmen,
und gemeinsam die Zustimmung der Gemeinde lesen
Aufnahme – Zustimmung der Gemeinde
Wir nehmen euch mit offenen Armen auf, wie auch Christus uns angenommen hat. Wir wollen mit euch im Gottesdienst, im Bibelstudium, im Dienst, und in der Diziplin Gemeinschaft pflegen. Wir Versprechen euch unsere Willigkeit, Rat zu geben und zu empfangen, und in der Gemeinschaft der Erlösten Vergebung zu geben und zu empfangen. Wir nehmen euch freudig an als Partner in der Glaubensfamilie und in der Mission für die Welt.
Willkommen in der Springfield Heights MG.
· Jacob & Aganetha Friesen,
· Patrick & Cordelia Friesen,
· Hilda Giesbrecht
Im Namen Jesu Christi und der Gemeinde
heiße ich dich herzlich Willkommen
in der Springfield Heights Mennoniten Gemeinde.
Der Herr segne dich und setzt dich zum Segen.
John 13:1-17 Two basins – Jesus and Pilate
Jesus Washes the Disciples’ Feet
13 Now before the Feast of the Passover, when Jesus knew that his hour had come to depart out of this world to the Father, having loved his own who were in the world, he loved them to the end.
2 During supper, when the devil had already put it into the heart of Judas Iscariot, Simon’s son, to betray him,
3 Jesus, knowing that the Father had given all things into his hands, and that he had come from God and was going back to God,
4 rose from supper. He laid aside his outer garments, and taking a towel, tied it around his waist.
5 Then he poured water into a basin and began to wash the disciples’ feet and to wipe them with the towel that was wrapped around him.
6 He came to Simon Peter, who said to him, “Lord, do you wash my feet?”
7Jesus answered him, “What I am doing you do not understand now, but afterward you will understand.”
8 Peter said to him, “You shall never wash my feet.” Jesus answered him, “If I do not wash you, you have no share with me.”
9 Simon Peter said to him, “Lord, not my feet only but also my hands and my head!”
10 Jesus said to him, “The one who has bathed does not need to wash, except for his feet, but is completely clean. And you are clean, but not every one of you.”
11 For he knew who was to betray him; that was why he said, “Not all of you are clean.”
The practice of foot-washing,
has been a feature of many
Anabaptist churches during the past 500 years.
Many people believe that it is no longer culturally appropriate
to practice footwashing
in contexts where washing the feet of guests
is not regarded as a mark of hospitality and servanthood.
But this is one of the very few occasions when,
according to the Gospel of John,
Jesus explicitly said
that he was setting an example for his disciples.
In recent years
many congregations that practiced the footwashing
have discontinued it.
The Confession of Faith from a Mennonite Perspective
states the following concerning the Footwashing:
We believe that Jesus Christ calls us
to serve one another in love as he did.
Rather than seeking to lord it over others,
we are called to follow the example of our Lord,
who chose the role of a servant
by washing his disciples' feet.
Just before his death,
Jesus stooped to wash the disciples' feet and told them,
"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 as I have done to you."
In this act, Jesus showed humility and servanthood,
even laying down his life for those he loved.
In washing the disciples' feet,
Jesus acted out a parable of his life unto death for them,
and of the way his disciples are called to live in the world.
Believers who wash each other's feet
show that they share in the body of Christ.
They acknowledge their frequent need of cleansing,
renew their willingness to let go of pride and worldly power,
and offer their lives in humble service and sacrificial love.
When Jesus took the basin
and got down on his knees in front of Peter,
This is not the way things work….
But Jesus said to him,
“What I am doing you do not understand now,
but afterward you will understand.”
What was it that Peter didn’t understand?
We find the account of the footwashing
only in the Gospel of John.
And yet, we find this symbol of humble servanthood
and yielding to one another
to be the key to understanding
what Jesus was all about.
The Anabaptists of the 16th Century
had a strong theology of two kingdoms
that stand in opposition to each other.
Vernard Eller wrote an article in 1977 entitled,
Whose Feet are in your basin?
Following the theology of the Anabaptists,
he says that in the Gospels we are told of two kingdoms,
each represented by its king.
These two kingdoms come into a confrontation
that focuses upon their respective basins.
The issue between them centres on freedom,
power, and security.
These are issues that speak to us today
in our world of military madness.
The two kingdoms are ‘the kingdom of God’ on the one hand,
and ‘the kingdom of this world’ on the other.
The respective kings are Jesus and Pilate.
Pilate was only a military governor
and thus a deputy of the actual king, Caesar.
And Jesus claimed to have been anointed (deputized) by God;
so the parallel is closer than we might think.
In any case, in their confrontation,
each filled the function of king.
The Gospel of Mark tells us about a dispute among the disciples.
In that dispute King Jesus
defines the difference between the two kingdoms.
"You know that in the world the recognized rulers
lord it over their subjects,
and their great men make them feel the weight of authority.
That is not the way with you;
among you, whoever wants to be great
must be your servant,
and whoever wants to be first
must be the willing slave of all.
For even the Son of Man did not come to be served
but to serve,
and to give up his life as a ransom for many."
Jesus points out in this passage
how the kingdom of this world operates,
and Pilate fits the bill as a ‘recognized ruler’ very well.
He had the POWER to lord it over his subjects
and to make them feel the weight of his authority.
Jesus, then, proceeds to describe his own kingdom
in completely different terms:
‘This is not the way with you’.
The principles of Christ’s regime and rule are
serving rather than being served,
the giving up of one’s life,
being a willing slave of all.
There’s no POWER here…
nor FREEDOM or SECURITY…
as the world knows it.
The Citizens of God’s Kingdom
model their life after that of their King.
It goes without saying
that the principle holds in Pilate’s kingdom as well:
people are after all the freedom,
power, and security they can get;
and their king is the one who is the best at it.
During Passion Week a cosmic showdown
took the center stage in the course of human history.
On the way to the great Kingdom Confrontation,
Jesus took up the basin that symbolizes
and demonstrates the quality of his Kingship:
"Then he poured water into a basin,
and began to wash his disciples’ feet
and to wipe them with the towel" (John 13:5).
Now things were getting serious.
Earlier, Jesus had said,
“whoever wants to be the greatest,
must be the willing servant of all…”
Now Jesus does exactly that.
Washing feet was the most menial of services;
in fact, it was slave labour, nothing else.
Very seldom would a disciple wash his master’s feet,
as an act of extraordinary devotion.
Peter knew this and he gave the proper and expected response:
‘I will never let you wash my feet.
That is no way for a king to act;
so get off your knees and quit making a fool of yourself
and of us.
Kingdoms are not built by serving others,
but by showing them who’s in charge.’
But Jesus did wash the feet of Peter and the others.
And then he said,
‘You call me “Master” and “Lord”, and rightly so.’
His action was not a denial of his kingly status and authority.
He made sure that Peter understood this.
Further, he said,
‘I have set you an example;
you are to do as I have done for you.’
The way of the king is meant to be followed!
In Luke’s (Luke 22:24-30) telling of the Lord’s supper,
we have another account of the rivalry between the disciples.
"Then a jealous dispute broke out:
who among them should rank highest?
But Jesus said, ‘In the world kings lord it over their subjects:
and those in authority are called
their country’s “Benefactors”.
Not so with you:
on the contrary,
the highest among you must bear himself like the youngest,
the chief of you like a servant.
For who is greater –
the one who sits at table
or the servant who waits on him?
Surely the one who sits at table.
Yet here am I among you like a servant.
You are the men who have stood firmly by me
in my times of trial;
and now I vest in you the kingship
which my Father vested in me;
you shall eat and drink at my table in my kingdom
and sit on thrones as judges of the twelve tribes of Israel"
This kingdom of Jesus is not only different;
it’s just plain weird:
‘In the world, kings lord it (naturally)…
Not so with you (that is obviously not the way of the KofG)…
I am among you like a slave (washing feet)…
And now (not then… someday in eternity; now on my knees)
I vest in you the KINGSHIP
which my Father vested in me.’
Thursday, the day when Jesus shared the Last Supper
with his disciples…
when, being God Himself in human flesh,
he humbled himself and took on the form of a servant …
he took the basin and washed their feet…
Thursday was the crowning moment for Jesus!
But, in this confrontation of the two Kingdoms
There is another basin.
On Friday, Good Friday,
Pilate also took a basin…
At his interrogation Jesus says to Pilate:
‘My kingdom does not belong to this world.
If it did, my followers would be fighting…
My kingly authority comes from elsewhere’ (John 18:36).
Jesus’ kingdom is different from Pilate’s;
It does not rest on military power.
Nevertheless, Jesus does claim ‘authority’.
"Then Pilate said to him.
‘Do you not hear all this evidence
that is brought against you?’;
but (Jesus) still refused to answer one word,
to the Governor’s great astonishment." (Matt. 27:13-14).
You see, the kingdom of the world dictates that,
when one is accused or attacked,
one must defend oneself and retaliate.
But Jesus does not fight back.
He remains defenceless and silent.
Pilate and his kingdom cannot understand
how a person, whose pride has been injured,
would not retaliate.
But Jesus is free to says ‘no’ to retaliation
and Lording it over them.
"‘Do you refuse to speak to me?’ said Pilate.
‘Surely you know that I have authority to release you,
and I have authority to crucify you?’
‘You would have no authority at all over me,’ Jesus replied,
‘if it had not been granted you from above’" (John 19:10-11).
Then, in the face of the facts,
Pilate finally has to say,
‘I find no case against him’ (John 18:39).
And the text tells us that
‘from that moment Pilate tried hard to release him’
This free, secure, powerful ruler
was used to lording it over his subjects.
But, he was in fact unable even for a moment
to let Jesus go free.
"Pilate could see that nothing was being gained,
and a riot was starting;
so he took a basin with water and washed his hands
in full view of the people, saying,
‘My hands are clean of this man’s blood;
see to that yourselves’" (Matt. 27:24-25).
Here, then, on Friday, is Pilate’s basin.
Even though he claimed the power of the kingdom of this world,
Pilate was nothing more than a puppet king,
And he was afraid of the Jewish mob.
He had no real Power,
No real freedom to choose what to do with Jesus
No real security in his position as king.
History tells us that shortly after the crucifixion of Jesus
Pilate was pulled from his post
And there are a variety of reports that he
May have taken his own life or
That he was bannished into the wilderness.
Even though he washed his hands of the death of Jesus,
Pilate is still the king that went down in history
As the man who crucified the Son of God.
There is Power in giving oneself up
For the sake of serving others.
Jesus calls us to be ‘the willing slaves of all’.
That is a very deliberate word,
because the word willing
is the key to the kingship of Jesus.
Voluntarily to take on the role of a slave
is perhaps the freest action a person can take.
We are not naturally inclined to be servants and slaves.
It is a sacrifice.
But Jesus takes up the basin and towel freely
as a symbol of his taking up the cross.
And he sets an example for us as well.
Ronald Wiebe & Kevin Kehler - Footwashing
Reading after the Footwashing
12 When he had washed their feet
and put on his outer garments and resumed his place,
he said to them,
“Do you understand what I have done to you?
13 You call me Teacher and Lord,
and you are right, for so I am.
14 If I then, your Lord and Teacher,
have washed your feet,
you also ought to wash one another’s feet.
15 For I have given you an example,
that you also should do just as I have done to you.
16 Truly, truly, I say to you,
a servant is not greater than his master,
nor is a messenger greater than the one who sent him.
17 If you know these things,
blessed are you if you do them.
 Confession of Faith in a Mennonite Perspective http://www.mennolink.org/doc/cof/art.13.html
 Vernard Eller, Whose Feet are in Your Basin?, 03/03/2008. Reprinted from The Other Side July 1977, pp20-30 http://www.anabaptistnetwork.com/node/314