Jesus washed the feet of Judas, a few hours later Judas would betray him.
Foot washing displayed different significant things in Biblical times.
It put a person in a servant posture. It was an act of humbleness and humility. It was a necessary act. A repetitive act, as well.
Something I read recently made a great observation about Jesus’ washing of the disciples feet. First, it was pointed out that there was no servant there to do the job. Second, they were already in the midst of the meal when Jesus’ took on the task.
When there was no servant there to handle the foot washing, it never dawned on the disciples to do it for each other.
Third, when Jesus began to wash Peter’s feet there was a protest by Peter. He didn’t want Jesus to do something he felt was beneath the Messiah. Jesus responded: “Unless I wash you, you have no part with me” (John 13:8); to which Peter then asked for a complete cleaning. Which is exactly what happens when are spiritually cleansed… when the blood of Christ washes away all of our iniquity.
When He was finished, Jesus said “I have given you an example, that you should do as I have done to you” (John 13:15).
Remember the earlier point about it never dawning on the men to wash each other’s feet? We have been commanded to be Christlike, to posture ourselves a servant for others. To wash the feet of those who we love, and even those who will betray us.
We may wash feet with bowls of water, expensive oils, and perfumes. We may dry those feet with soft towels or strips of linen. Or, we may wash their feet with our tears and dry them with our hair (Luke 7:44). We wash their feet when we drop off meals while they recover, or mow the lawns of the elderly. We wash their feet when we grasp their hands, and provide a shoulder to cry on. We wash their feet when we speak blessings over the friend and the stranger.
We wash their feet when we posture ourselves to serve, not be served.