Palestine was a dusty place. People walked along dirt roads barefoot or in sandals of woven leather or reeds. Feet became extremely dirty, so it was commonplace to wash them upon entering a house. The wealthy had servants to clean others’ sweaty, dirty feet.
Similarly today, manners dictate that we wipe our feet on the doormat before entering a house. We don’t want to track in the dust and mud out of respect for the house owner. We want to be clean and presentable as well.
When Jesus bowed to wash his disciples' feet, Peter recoiled (John 13:1-9). But Jesus told him he needed to become clean. Peter then changed his tune. He basically told Jesus to wash all of him.
But Jesus offers more than a temporary cleansing of our body. His promise is to clean us on the inside. In Psalm 51:1-12, the writer asks for God to create a clean heart within him by cleansing him of his sins.
The old adage is true — cleanliness is next to godliness. To draw near to God, we need to be cleansed. Then he promises to allow us into his holy presence as his beloved children. Through Jesus’ sacrifice on the cross, he offers cleansing to all who come to him for forgiveness. You might say that Jesus is the doormat. We wipe our sins on him and he cleans us so we can come before God’s heavenly throne.
So, faithful ones, wipe your feet.
Lord, thank you for coming to earth and dying on the cross for the sole purpose of cleansing us from sin so we could approach God’s throne. Remind me that because of you, I can live in his presence as God the Father promised. I look forward to the day I will no longer attract the dirt of this world and will worship before his throne forever, thanks to your sacrifice. Amen.
Go Deeper — Today, as you wipe your feet on the mat when you enter a building, think about how Christ cleanses you from your sins and thank him.
Photo Credit: Johanes Plenio