Before the disciples Jesus knelt, and washed the feet of each. First Peter, the Rock. Then Andrew,
his brother; James, the first-martyred disciple; Philip, the first-called disciple;
Bartholomew, by legend a powerful missionary; Thomas, who became certain by doubting; Matthew, the tax collector; James, the brother of Jesus; Thaddaeus, by legend a gifted healer; Simon, the zealot; Judas, the betrayer; and John, the Son of Thunder who became the Apostle of Love. They were all there, at the table, eating together. The meal had been carefully prepared. Every etiquette had been observed. Except one. The footwashing. Everyone’s feet were dusty and travel-stained. Somehow this courtesy had been neglected. But this omission became a wonderful opportunity for Jesus. For on this Last Night of the Last Supper He would speak a Last Word. A Word that would sum up His ministry, His gospel, His self. How better to example and immortalize this Last Word. So amazing it was as Jesus with water and towel became the lowliest of servants! Kneeling, He washed the feet of each disciple. Including Judas! Judas! To whose feet still clung dust from his walk to the office of the high priest, where for silver he sold his soul. Judas! Whose feet would shortly take him to Gethsemane and Jesus for the kiss that would betray Him to death. Judas! Traitor, villain, archenemy! His feet too Jesus washed!
Ah yes, what He did that night,
showing love forgiving, serving, kneeling; showing love without measure, without change, without end, will forever example and immortalize His Last Word, His Farewell Commandment, His Essence Sentence:
“As I have loved you,
So love one another.”