Jesus didn’t like everyone whose feet He washed at the last supper.

caravaggio judas kissIf we cringe at the thought
of washing the feet of our enemies,

we only need to remember one name:
Judas Iscariot.

In case you didn’t notice,
Judas was still there
when Jesus washed the feet of the disciples.
He hadn’t yet left to betray the Lord.

That is why in the Gospel, our Lord tells the disciples:
“You are not all clean.”

But the Lord did not exclude him from the feet-washing.

Imagine: This person whose feet our Lord is washing with His own hands
would later show up leading an army
and would–of all things–kiss him to betray him.

caravaggio arrest
“The Taking of Christ” (Caravaggio)

What could our Lord have been thinking
while He was washing Judas’ feet
just hours before the betrayal?

Perhaps by washing the feet of Judas,
our Lord was trying to reach out to him,
hoping against hope that this ultimate gesture of humility and love
could still touch the heart of his friend and make him change his mind–
in much the same way
that He had offered Judas a morsel of bread dipped in wine
during that same last supper.

Or perhaps our Lord was simply telling Judas:
“I understand. For whatever reason, you believe in what you need to do.
I will not isolate you, and separate you from the others
just because of what you are about to do.”

Washing someone’s feet is to tell that person
that we understand no matter what
and that we refuse to allow whatever differences we may have
from separating us.

 

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