The Upper Room Discourse 3 Rabbi Michael Weiner
John 13:17 If you know these things, you are blessed if you do them!
Yeshua is making a huge distinction here between knowing and doing. So many of us chase after head knowledge. How often do I hear people say things like, “I’m only seeking the truth.” And I want to respond by quoting Colonel Jessup in the movie, “A Few Good Men,” when he said in court, “You can’t handle the truth.”
Rabbi Trail: That is the full extent of my desire to quote Colonel Jessup. His character is a marine commanding officer with a foul mouth. Don’t bother telling me I should repent for referring to such a vulgar movie, I already do. End RT.
The point of Yeshua’s statement is to highlight the difference between head knowledge and heart intension. Remember, “It’s a heart THANG?” Obedience is the product of a rightly motivated heart. In Hebrew we call it Kavenah, which means “intentionality.”
Jeremiah 29:13 You will seek Me and find Me, when you will search for Me with all your heart.
The question remains, “What ‘things’ does Yeshua want us to both know AND do?” Scriptural questions have to be answered by the Scripture itself. Who cares what anybody else thinks or feels? We need God’s answers. The two verses that precede our subject verse give us our answer.
John 13:15-16 I have given you an example – you should do for each other what I have done for you. Amen, amen I tell you, a servant isn’t greater than his master, and the one who is sent isn’t greater than the one who sent him.
Yeshua had just washed the disciples feet. We discussed that last time. Then He says, “The servant isn’t greater than his master.” Here, Yeshua is highlighting our mission to follow His example and serve God by serving one another.
1 John 4:20 If anyone says, “I love God,” and hates his brother, he is a liar. For the one who does not love his brother, whom he has seen, cannot love God, whom he has not seen.
The proof is in the doing. Jacob 2:24 You see that a man is proved righteous by works and not by faith alone.
It is an important first step to know God and His purposes. The critical next step is to do “His purposes” and receive a blessing.