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The Washing According to Peter

by Kristine Stanton © 2024

Many years ago, as disciples. . .

We walked this Earth with Jesus Christ
and listened to His Word.
He led the way and we obeyed—
each word He spoke, we heard.

"It was just before the Passover Festival. Jesus knew that the hour had come for him to leave this world and go to the Father. . .The evening meal was in progress, and the devil had already prompted Judas the son of Simon Iscariot, to betray Jesus," (John 13: 1–2, NIV).

'Twas just before the Festival—
the one of Passover,
when Jesus knew the hour had come
to leave—to cross over.

"The evening meal was in progress"— (John 13:2, NIV)
the devil had his say—
he prompted Judas to get up
and sent him to betray. . .

Betray Emmanuel, the Christ—
the sacrificial Lamb—
the Holy One—the Son of Man—
the Son of the "I AM."

Jesus "got up from the meal, took off his outer clothing, and wrapped a towel around his waist. After that, he poured water into a basin and began to wash his disciples' feet, drying them with the towel that was wrapped around him. He came to Simon Peter, who said to him, "Lord, are you going to wash my feet?" Jesus replied, "You do not realize now what I am doing, but later you will understand." "No," said Peter, "you shall never wash my feet." Jesus answered, "Unless I wash you, you have no part with me." "Then, Lord," Simon Peter replied, "not just my feet but my hands and my head as well!" Jesus answered, "Those who have had a bath need only to wash their feet; their whole body is clean. And you are clean, though not every one of you." For he knew who was going to betray him, and that was why he said not every one was clean, (John 13: 4–11, NIV).

Christ humbly knelt and washed our feet,
with basin on the floor.
A cloth was wrapped around His waist—
this Man that we called Lord.

It was my turn for Him to wash
my feet, but I declined.
"You'll never wash my feet, Rabbi—
not now or any time."

"Unless I wash your feet, Peter,
you'll have no part with Me."
I thought about the words He said,
and then I did agree.

"But only if this act entails
my feet, my head, my hands."
With wisdom, Jesus answered me,
"that's not what has been planned.

"It's only those who've had a bath
need only wash their feet,
because their body has been cleansed—
this act you did complete.

"But there is one who among you all
whose body is not clean.
He's one who shared My bread with Me—
'tis so—I have foreseen.

"He will betray Me—this is true,"
said Jesus Christ, God's Lamb.
I'm telling you so you'll believe
"that I am who I am." (John 13, 19, NIV)

"When he had finished washing their feet, he put on his clothes and returned to his place. "Do you understand what I have done for you?" he asked them. "You call me 'Teacher' and 'Lord,' and rightly so, for that is what I am. Now that I, your Lord and Teacher, have washed your feet, you also should wash one another's feet. I have set you an example that you should do as I have done for you.. . ."I am telling you now before it happens, so that when it does happen you will believe that I am who I am, (John 13: 12–15, 19, NIV).

It's when Christ finished with our feet,
He went back to His place,
and asked if we had understood
the task He'd done with grace. . .

He'd set examples for us all—
to do what He had done—
to wash the feet of followers—
disciples of God's Son.

"Very truly I tell you, no servant is greater than his master, nor is a messenger greater than the one who sent him. Now that you know these things, you will be blessed if you do them," (John 13: 16–17, NIV).

No messenger is greater than
the one who sends for him,
and if he does what Christ has done
he will be blessed within.

This poem was a finalist in the March 2024 poetry contest

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Books by Kristine Stanton

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