Jesus washes his disciples feet. It was just before the passover festival. Jesus knew that the hour had come for him to leave this world and go to the father having loved his own, who were in the world he loved them to the end. The evening meal was in progress and the devil had already prompted judas. The son of simon iscariot, to betray jesus jesus knew that the father had put all things under his power and that he had come from god and will return 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 those who have had a bath need only to wash their feet. Their whole body is clean and you are clean, though not every one of you, for he knew who was going to portray him, and that was why he said not. Everyone 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 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 when he was gone. Jesus said now, the son of man is glorified and god is glorified in him. If god is glorified in him, god will glorify the son in himself and will glorify him at once. My children, i will be with you only a little longer. You will look for me and just as i told the jews, so i tell you now where i am going. You cannot come a new commandment. I give you love one another, as i have loved you, so you must love one another by this. Everyone will know that you are my disciples if you love one another amen a good few years ago, i was privileged to spend a weekend with members of the royal family and to preach in krathy kirk with the queen and others among the worshippers, but i’ll.
Never forget this saturday night when dinner took the form of a barbecue in an estate lodge. It was a drive to get there and upon arrival, and there were about 18 of us in all the queen immediately started preparing the table for dinner, setting cutlery at each place and arranging glasses and so on. It was a lovely scene and yet one couldn’t help thinking. Do you not have people to do this kind of thing for you? I guess it seemed the wrong way around and that’s exactly what peter was thinking that night when jesus got up from the passover table and taking a towel and bowl of water began to wash the feet of those assembled that’s, not your job jesus. He protested you’re in charge around here, you’re the boss. We can’t have you on your knees, doing the work that belongs to servants but of course, that’s exactly why jesus was doing it to show them in a once and for all kind of way before his death. That he was a servant that he had come to serve, not to be served and the final act of serving was awaiting the giving of his life. Jesus must have often despaired of peter. He got it wrong time after time and yet jesus loved him and trusted him and turned to him time after time. If there were occasions when he wanted just two or three of the group with him, peter was always among that group and yes, in the end peter learned he got it.
Do you are you embodying jesus? How are you serving metaphorically or literally, whose feet are you washing? In what ways are you on your knees? Are you going out of your way to serve others and not least the most vulnerable in normal circumstances, monday thursday is an occasion when christians have traditionally gathered to share the lord’s supper together, not easy right now, but important as such celebrations are, they lose their meaning. If not accompanied by service we’re grateful to john for including the washing of faith in his gospel account that we might have the full picture, and jesus said 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: Music, ah, Music, so Applause, Music, Applause, Music, stay here and keep watch with me shine! Praise Music! The spirit is Music is let us pray, lord god, here at the heart of john’s, telling of your story. We see the heart of the father revealed in the sun. Your signs have spoken, your words consoled and confused. Your presence has encouraged some and enraged others and all the while in temple, courts and galilean fields in intimate conversations and public debates, the mystery of who you are has been disclosed to all, even as it remained veiled to their minds. But now your hour is finally here and in this selfless act of food washing we see the strange glory of a king who chooses to kneel a lord who opts to serve a holy one, who chooses to love our calloused grimy humanity to the very end, lord God, what a strange glory you show to us in christ what’s staggering selfless love you have for your people like peter.
We shrink back both wanting and dreading this kind of closeness with you may our trust in who you are calm. Our fears, because you haven’t just touched our flesh you’ve, assumed it dignified it elevated it. You know humanity from the inside, so in your company, there is no need and no place for hiding only honesty, openness, repentance and gratitude. Lord in love, you service and you commission us to go and serve the other in the same agape love relating to folk as they are and not how we would have them be, and this is where the story leaves the page and takes flesh and the names And faces of the people we’re called to serve day after day month after month, year after year, lord, we confess that it’s an easy task to serve some of those people it’s much harder with some others. So we ask you to bless us daily with the reserves of love, patience and grace that we need to minister, your kindness to others and help us to be vulnerable enough to accept your touch through them.