Jesus told Peter: “If I do not wash you, you will not have part with me …”
What hard words to the proud ear. I guess they sound like that because they are the truth, and nothing bothers more than the truth of knowing one can’t do it by himself… recognize that our intelligence, dexterity, charity or even our abilities are useless when it comes to crossing the line that separates the earthly from the divine, it is not simple. Arriving at that line everything is reduced to two great rivals who do not share dominion: pride and humility.
But Jesus would explain the real situation in which we humans are.
It was Palestine of the first century, the streets were not paved, so they were always dusty and dirty, the animals and their waste were trodden by hundreds of feet that came into the houses to eat on tables without chairs and where the face of a person was near the feet of the next one.
No Jew in his right mind would wash someone’s feet, that grotesque task was reserved for slaves and preferably for those who were not Jews. But the Lord, the Master, the Christ, wrapped a towel around himself, poured water into a basin and began to wipe the dirty feet of each of his disciples.
“Lord, you will never wash my feet!” Shouted Peter defending his pride or protecting his teacher’s, we do not know. But in no way was he going to allow the very son of God to humble himself to cleanse his filth. How little Peter understood! How little do we understand!
However, the Master replied: “If I do not wash you, you will not have part with me …”
Then Peter understood that in order to walk on the side of the divine it is necessary to be clean, to embrace with humility the sacrifice that cleanses the human heart: the sacrifice of the cross of Christ.
But although Jesus washed with all his soul the feet of each one, there was one who clung to his pride and decided not to cross the line of the earthly, and it was there where pride carved the heart of Judas and recorded in him thirty silver coins, with which he would betray the man; he would betray the Master who with all humility gave us an example of what love and service is.
But Christ knew, of course he knew what was coming. He know how indispensable it was for him to give his life so that you and I, stripping ourselves of pride, embrace the only option to walk by His side and be completely clean…