By: Coria Brock
September 30, 2023
John 13:12, New International Version
“When he had finished washing their feet, he put on his clothes and returned to his place. ‘Do you understand what I have done for you?’ he asked them.”
If now, at this moment, Jesus came and asked you the same question He asked His disciples: “Do you understand what I have done for you?” How would you respond to Him?
Why did Jesus choose to wash the feet? Why not wash their hands and head as well just as Peter requested? (Verse 9) Jesus took an action – to wash. And He chose the object – the feet. Let’s break it down to understand the motive from the heart of our Lord.
Feet – let’s seek to understand this from a cultural perspective. In ancient times, the roads were just dirt and people would have worn sandals of rope and leather. Combine the sweat-inducing heat with nearly bare feet on a dusty road and it is not hard to see that the filthy, sweaty feet were considered the most unclean and nasty part of the body.
Jesus took action to wash the most unclean and nasty part of us! You heard it right! Jesus washed the feet of His disciples. Those who were fishermen, tax collectors, or even thieves. He answered Peter, “Unless I wash you, you have no part with me…Those who have had a bath need only to wash their feet; their whole body is clean…” (Verse 8,10, NIV) Whoever has accepted Jesus as Lord and Savior have also been made clean (made whole and clothed in righteousness). By continually walking with Him we also deepen our relationship with Him and are a part of His Kingdom. He also instructed His disciples, “Now that I, your Lord and Teacher, have washed your feet, you also should wash one another’s feet. I have set you an example that you should do as I have done for you.” (Verse 14-15, NIV) Jesus, once again, demonstrated what He desired His followers to do and gave them understanding of His heart.
No one is too dirty for Jesus to make clean, and no one is too nasty for us to serve, to share the good news with, and show love and care. We may not control the path they choose after we demonstrate the love of Christ and share His truth, yet Jesus washes their feet too! Whether they decide to walk in relationship with Him or walk away from Him, that is between them and God. But for His followers Jesus requires the following, “Very truly I tell you, no servant is greater than his master, nor is a messenger greater than the one who sent him. Now that you know these things, you will be blessed if you do them.” (Verse 16-17, NIV) We should do what He has instructed us to do.
My dear friends, are you willing to do and follow what Jesus does as He does what the Father does? (John 5:19)