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Holy Week Thursday: Upside Down Kingdom

Jesus says this in response to a dispute among the disciples at the Last Supper about who was the greatest. To illustrate His point, He punctuates His sermonette by washing their feet, which many Christians observe on this Maundy Thursday.

Can you picture this? Jesus and his closest followers gather for His final meal in borrowed quarters, and the disciples argue status.

How like us humans! “Pick me, pick me!” Can’t you just see it?

Oh, how I battle this same inclination in many attractive disguises! I can testify that the pain is surely in the resistance! How nice of God to leave the disciples' example!

A carpenter, Jesus selected a ragamuffin band as His closest companions, mostly uneducated fishermen. Not exactly the G20, Illuminati, Ivy League, or World Economic Forum. Yet they changed the world, sent out by Jesus barefoot and penniless to share the Gospel of repentance, healing the sick, and casting out demons (John 22:35, Mark 6:7-13).

How revolutionary and totally unexpected!

How very different from the modern-day world, let alone the church!

In many Bible translations, “the lowest rank” is translated as “the youngest,” interpreted variously as suggesting the least seniority, experience, influence, or, more literally, with a decidedly child-like quality. I like that best.

As His consecrated and consecrating final dinner is served, Jesus concludes by removing his coat, grabbing a towel, preparing a basin of water, and kneeling to wash and dry the disciples’ stinky, dusty, gnarly-nailed feet.

This King conquered sin and death and will come again in glory!


Abba Father, Your Way is so very different from our world. I confess my resistance to Your sanctifying work in me. Please help me be pliable, trusting Your goodness. You chose us to be conformed to Christ’s image (Romans 8:29), dying to self (Galatians 2:20), to share in His sufferings, treasures, and glory for all eternity (Romans 8:17-18). Thank You for washing me clean! I love You. 💖

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