Beginning with Peter the disciple, Jesus has heard it all. Never, never. Famous last words. I’ve had many “Never, Never” statements. Every time, God just shakes His head and chuckles. (I’m almost positive!) How many times have you and I said, “I will never do this or say that…?”
During this Holy Week, I’ve been reading through Matthew’s and John’s gospels about the Passion of Christ. I’m struck by all the human flailing and failing. It’s like one huge mirror that reflects all of humanity’s brokenness. Mine included.
Today, Maunday Thursday, is when we remember Jesus’ final meal with his friends. And the betrayal that followed. It’s worth remembering Jesus knew everything that would go down in the next few hours…
One of the most scandalous events leading up to the crucifixion, death and resurrection of Christ is the washing of the disciples feet. Okay, as if it wasn’t enough for the Son of God to die on a cross, but washing feet? Com’on! Isn’t that getting a little personal? A little too intimate? A bit too close?
What sets Jesus apart from any other religious leader is not his death and resurrection (though that is key), but his willingness and humility to wash others feet. Who else does that?!*%
In our modern, shoe-covered society, we don’t really understand the enormity of foot-washing, do we? That is, the caked-on mud, dirt, grime and smell of walking along dusty roads. It was a servant’s job. Not the work of kings, royalty, or a suffering savior.
What was Christ thinking when He washed His friends feet? It’s a story worth exploring this Holy Week…
[W]ayne Forte is an exceptional visual artist and a good friend. He is one of the strongest biblical artists I know. His large figures convey a strength, power and beauty that captivate me every time I visit his studio.
His painting, Anointing His Feet, tells the story of extravagant love found in Matthew 26 and Mark 16.
It’s one of my favorite stories in the Gospels about wasteful extravagance. A redefinition of love. A holy twist. It’s two days before the Passover. Let’s pick up the story…