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Read Introduction to John


6 Then He came to Simon Peter. And Peter said to Him, “Lord, are You washing my feet?” 7 Jesus answered and said to him, “What I am doing you do not understand now, but you will know after this.”


There was dead silence among the disciples about Jesus washing their feet until He came to Peter. Peter’s response was probably the thoughts of everyone present.


Then He came to Simon Peter.

As Jesus approached Peter to wash his feet, he reacted to his Lord doing this. To him, as a subordinate to Jesus, it was completely incongruous for a servant to accept service from his Lord.

And Peter said to Him, “Lord [master], are You [emphatic] washing my feet?”

Peter here made an intense reply to Jesus, “Will You, of all people in the world, wash my feet?” This humble act was incomprehensible to Peter. This action made no sense to him at all. His objection had good intention, but he was completely ignorant of the issue at hand.


Jesus answered and said to him, “What I am doing you do not understand now,

Jesus accepted the fact that Peter did not comprehend what He was doing at this point. The thought that Jesus put across is that He would demonstrate ultimate humility on the cross. It would become clear to the disciples why His humility was so important.

but you will know after this.

“After this” does not relate to footwashing but to the idea behind Jesus’ washing the feet of the apostles. Peter would understand the mission of Jesus more completely after His resurrection. There would come a time when Peter saw beyond the present.


Christians need to put priority on things of the highest order.


There are times when we should do what the Lord asks without knowing its implications or future developments. There should be no option to grumble about what He asks of us.

Peter put a precedent on human order and culture in his reaction to Jesus washing his feet. However, Jesus operated on a higher order, a higher plan. It is easy for believers to allow culture to determine their values. If we allow culture to shape our ideals, then we invariably live on non-Christian standards of life. No wonder so many Christians live like non-believers.

Emphasis on the human order to the exclusion of the Bible is carried over into church growth with attempts to accommodate biblical absolutes to the perceived needs of non-believers. This is a serious mistake and will undermine Christianity itself.