What Jesus Did! 'Words or Deeds?' — John 13:6-9

Tuesday, September 9, 2014

Jesus came to Simon Peter. But Peter said to Jesus, "Lord, you should not wash my feet." Jesus answered, "You don't know what I am doing now. But later you will understand." Peter said, "No! You will never wash my feet." Jesus answered, "If I don't wash your feet, then you cannot be one of my people." Simon Peter answered, "Lord, after you wash my feet, wash my hands and my head too!"
— John 13:6-9
Illustration of John 13:6-9 — "Lord, after you wash my feet, wash my hands and my head too!"

Key Thought

Peter hasn't learned the lesson. Jesus wants his disciples to demonstrate their faith and love. Talk is cheap. Peter is a big talker. Even in this moment of Jesus' example and sacrifice, Peter wants to talk big. Jesus, however, stoops low and washes Peter's feet, too. Peter may not understand at that moment, but he will later for the rest of his life. He will then live to demonstrate his faith and loyalty and not just talk about it!

Today's Prayer

Lord God, please forgive me when my deeds don't match up to my worship words. I know that kind of hypocrisy turns your stomach so I ask that more than just forgiving me, please help me become the person I say that I am and that I want to be. Humble me gently until I am like Jesus, in whose name I pray. Amen.

Today's Verses in Context

It was almost time for the Jewish Passover festival. Jesus knew that it was time for him to leave this world. It was now time for Jesus to go back to the Father. Jesus had always loved those people in the world who were his. Now was the time Jesus showed them his love the most. Jesus and his followers were at the evening meal. The devil had already persuaded Judas Iscariot to turn against Jesus. (Judas was the son of Simon.) The Father had given Jesus power over everything. Jesus knew this. Jesus also knew that he had come from God. And he knew that he was going back to God. While they were eating, Jesus stood up and took off his robe. Jesus got a towel and wrapped the towel around his waist. Then Jesus poured water into a pitcher. He began to wash the followers' feet. He dried their feet with the towel that was wrapped around his waist. Jesus came to Simon Peter. But Peter said to Jesus, "Lord, you should not wash my feet." Jesus answered, "You don't know what I am doing now. But later you will understand." Peter said, "No! You will never wash my feet." Jesus answered, "If I don't wash your feet, then you cannot be one of my people." Simon Peter answered, "Lord, after you wash my feet, wash my hands and my head too!" Jesus said, "After a person has a bath, his whole body is clean. He needs only to wash his feet. And you men are clean, but not every one of you." Jesus knew who would turn against him. That is why Jesus said, "Not every one of you is clean." Jesus finished washing their feet. Then he put on his clothes and went back to the table. Jesus asked, "Do you understand what I did for you? You call me 'Teacher.' And you call me 'Lord.' And this is right, because that is what I am. I am your Lord and Teacher. But I washed your feet {like a servant}. So you also should wash each other's feet. I did this as an example for you. So you should do {for each other} like I did for you. I tell you the truth. A servant is not greater than his master. The person that issent to do something is not greater than the one that sent him. If you know these things, you will be happy if you do them.

John 13:1-17

Related Scripture Readings

"Not every person that says that I am his Lord will enter the kingdom of heaven. The only people that will enter the kingdom of heaven are those people that do the things that my Father in heaven wants.

Matthew 7:21

Do what God's teaching says; don't just listen and do nothing. Why? Because when you only sit and listen, you are fooling yourselves. If you hear God's teaching and do nothing, you are like this: You are like a man that looks at his face in the mirror. The man sees himself, but he does nothing. He goes away and quickly forgets how bad he looked. But you must not be like that. You must carefully study God's perfect law that makes people free. You must continue to study it. You must listen to God's teaching and not forget what you heard. Then you must obey what God's teaching says. When you do this, it will make you truely happy.

James 1:22-25

It is the same with faith. If faith does nothing, then that faith is dead, because it is alone.

James 2:17

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About This Devotional

What Jesus Did is a one-year devotional guide through the gospels, using one short passage each day and following the Gospel in consecutive order. Each devotional consists of a passage, reflection and a prayer which opens up the day's scripture and shows how it challenges you to live for Jesus.

What Jesus Did! is written by Phil Ware.

Easy-to-Read Version copyright © 2001 by World Bible Translation Center. All rights reserved.