Footwashing

David Bast

READ : John 13:1-17

He poured water into a basin and began to wash the disciples’ feet. (v. 5)

Mike Rowe has become a television star by hosting a program called Dirty Jobs. Had he
lived in Bible times, he could have done an episode on footwashing.

Apparently there was no servant in the Upper Room to wash everyone’s feet before the
Passover meal. Maybe the disciples wondered among themselves whether one of them ought to
volunteer. But no one did. It was too demeaning, too far beneath them. How then must they
have felt when they saw Jesus get up and take the towel and basin himself? He, the Master,
would serve them and do the slave’s work. Philippians 2:8 sums up Jesus’ entire life with
one phrase: “he humbled himself.” Jesus humbled himself not only in becoming a man, but in
the humble kind of man he became.

Oswald Chambers pointed out that Jesus’ final words to his followers were not, “I’ve had a most successful time on earth. I’ve addressed thousands of people and been the means of their salvation. Now you go and do the same kind of thing.” What he said instead was, “If I then your Lord and Teacher have washed your feet, you also ought to wash one another’s feet.”

Now that we know this, blessed are we if we do it.

PRAYER

Lord, forgive my pride. Teach me to serve.