Holy Thursday (Part Two): Towel and Basin

The Christ-followers gathered with their Master for the last time before the circumstances and events of that night would overwhelm them.  Unaware of the approaching darkness, they gathered in an upper room to remember the Passover: how God delivered His people from bondage.  It was there that Jesus “showed them the full extent of His love” (John 13:1).  It began unexpectedly…

“…so He got up and wrapped a towel around his waist.  After that, He poured water into a basin and began to wash the disciples’ feet, drying them with the towel that was wrapped around Him.” (John 13:4-5)

Though the disciples we’re unaware of the approaching darkness, Jesus knew the path He was to take: a journey marked by indignity.  Yet this indignity was not outside His understanding or control: it would be something He freely submitted Himself to.  And so He took a towel and a basin – freely…willingly…lovingly.

The position He took was one of a servant.  It is the position no one aspires to have.  For our world believes greatness is found in position and power, influence and affluence.  Yet Jesus came to serve – to embrace indignity so our dignity may be restored.  He laid aside the glories of heaven for the indignity of earth, to pay the price for our sin…our indignity. He came to make a way for people to find their way back to God.

The indignity of this foot-washing was not lost on Peter: “You shall never wash my feet!”  Never.  Yet to reject His indignity is to reject His love and the only path for our redemption and restoration.

Indignity was not the destiny He deserved but the one He chose because He loves us so much.

As you prepare your heart for this Easter weekend, allow His love to wash over you again.