Wednesday, April 20, 2011

Easter Live ~ Not to be served, but to serve

I'd imagine that many people taking part in the Easter Live (see the button on the right hand side) will be focusing on the footwashing story tomorrow, however I have other plans for tomorrow and so I'm going to break with tradition!

John 13 1-17
Jesus Washes His Disciples' Feet

It was just before the Passover Feast.
Jesus knew that the time had come for him to leave this world and go to the Father. Having loved his own who were in the world, he now showed them the full extent of his love.
The evening meal was being served, and the devil had already prompted Judas Iscariot, son of Simon, to betray Jesus.
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.
He came to Simon Peter, who said to him, "Lord, are you going to wash my feet?"Jesus replied, "You do not realize now what I am doing, but later you will understand."
"No," said Peter, "you shall never wash my feet."
Jesus answered, "Unless I wash you, you have no part with me."
"Then, Lord," Simon Peter replied, "not just my feet but my hands and my head as well!"Jesus answered,
"A person who has had a bath needs only to wash his feet; his whole body is clean. And you are clean, though not every one of you." For he knew who was going to betray him, and that was why he said not every one was clean.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. "You call me 'Teacher' and 'Lord,' and rightly so, for that is what I am.
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. I tell you the truth, 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.

Washing feet was an honor that a good host awarded to his guests. Sandals were the standard foot wear and the dusty roads meant that people were often glad to have this service offered to them. It was a refreshing thing.
When Jesus offered to wash his disciples fee, he was met with horror. Peter could not imagine Jesus washing his feet. But Jesus explained that he had come to Earth, not to serve, but to be a servant. Of course, we know that he then goes on to offer the most subservient service of all and give his life for us.
Although he'd predicted his death to his disciples, I'm sure that none of them fully understood.
Jesus says "I have set an example that you should do as I have done for you" What we do for others, we are doing for Jesus.

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