Dirty Feet (from 31 Days of Encouragement – Beth)


It was springtime, just before the Passover Feast. The disciples were making preparations for the Passover meal. The air was balmy and muggy. The dust and the mud of country roads would have easily penetrated the open sandals of those walking on it. The disciples’ feet were no exception as they made their way to the upstairs room the night of the Passover celebration.

It was customary to be greeted on arrival by a servant waiting with a basin and a towel, ready to wash the feet of those entering a place where food would be served. As was the culture of the time, everyone sat or reclined on the floor when they ate a meal. Heads and shoulders leaned in towards the table, with legs and feet stretching out to the side.

Since everyone was on the floor level, it was possible for another person’s feet to be very close to the face of the person sitting beside him. On this particular day, however there was no servant at the door with a wash basin and towel. The disciples entered the room with dirty feet. Then Jesus arrived.

“Jesus, knowing that the Father had given all things into His hands, and that He had come forth from God, and was going back to God, rose from supper, and laid aside His garments, and taking a towel, He girded Himself about” (John 13:3-4).

At a time when His own needs were overwhelming, and in an act of lowly service, Jesus began to wash the smelly, dirty feet of each of his disciples. John 13:5-20 chronicles the humble and submissive act of Christ, as He served his disciples. When Jesus came to Simon Peter, he protested, and refused to allow Jesus to wash his feet. Jesus gently explained to Peter that if He did not wash his feet, Peter would have no part in Him. Then Peter, realizing the seriousness of the moment replied, “Lord, then wash not only my feet, but also my hands and my head.” It was only after Christ death on the cross that Peter understood what Jesus meant by the spiritual symbolism of the words spoken and deeds performed during his final hours with His disciples.

When Jesus came to earth, He willing stripped off His heavenly robe of righteousness, and took the form of a man in order to be able to, by the shedding of His own blood on the cross, wash away our sins. In His final hours with his disciples, Christ explained that once you have been to the cross for forgiveness, you are completely clean (John 13:9). All sins are totally and completely forgiven. However, in our flesh, we still sin and our “feet get dirty.” We must come back to the cross each day to confess our sins and allow Jesus to wash the dirt off our spiritual feet. This act of honesty and submission keeps us in a right fellowship with our Father. Understand my friend once we are saved, we cannot loose our salvation. Sin can hinder fellowship but cannot breach your relationship with Jesus.

Have you been washed in the blood of the Lamb? If so, are you walking around with “dirty feet?” Perhaps unconfessed sin has taken over your heart. Take a few moments and confess before the Lord anything that might be hindering your relationship with Him. Let Him wash the dirt of sin from your feet today.

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