Jesus never taught anything he didn’t live. He lived the life he called people to live. He prayed. His disciples saw him pray. They asked, “Teach us to pray.” When he taught them to pray, he didn’t get real elaborate. He didn’t need to. He already lived it before them. They didn’t need a lot of explanation to learn to do what they had seen him do. Jesus taught by example. Hybels call these the most powerful two words Jesus ever spoke: “Follow me.”[1]

The classic example of Jesus being an example is in John 13. Notice the irony in these words:

Jesus knew that the Father had put all things under his power, and that he had come from God and was returning to God; so he got up from the meal, took off his outer clothing, and wrapped a towel around his waist. After that, he poured water into a basin and began to wash his disciples’ feet, drying them with the towel that was wrapped around him. John 13:3-5 (NIV)

Imagine the President getting up from a presidential meal—perhaps one where he has entertained foreign presidents or key congressional leaders. Maybe he has entertained a rock star or movie mogul in the white house. Dinner is winding down. The President stands up, puts on a robe to cover his tuxedo, and begins to clear the dishes. “Are you through with that plate?”



[1] Axiom, Bill Hybels.