A Heart-Wrenching Scene (John 13)
Out of the four Gospels, John';s tells us the least when it comes to the things Jesus did and said during his final week in Jerusalem. In fact, all that is really mentioned after he entered Jerusalem and prior to the eve of his crucifixion is a request by some Greek pilgrims to visit with Jesus personally and the sermon he delivered after hearing that request (John 12:20–50).
In the other gospel accounts, we can read of what has come to be known as the Lord';s Supper or the Last Supper, but in John';s gospel, the events on the eve of the Crucifixion were as follows: Jesus washes the disciples'; feet (John 13:1–17), announces that one of the disciples will betray him (13:18– 30), then gives the disciples what can best be described as parting words.
The foot-washing scene is an especially touching scene because it is Jesus — the leader, Lord, and Master of the twelve disciples over the previous three-plus years — who takes out the wash basin and towel and begins washing their feet. Of the twelve, only Peter has the nerve to speak up and say what the others were no doubt thinking. But Jesus met Peter';s protests with a firm response: “Unless I wash you, you won';t belong to me” (John 13:8). Peter, of course, changed his mind and allowed Jesus to wash his feet.
While John wrote of Jesus washing the disciples'; feet on the eve of his crucifixion, the other gospel writers record Jesus serving in another way: by presenting them with what has come to be known as the Lord';s Supper. In it, the disciples ate the bread that represented Jesus';s flesh and drank the wine that represented his blood.
The foot washing was followed by Jesus';s very direct announcement to the disciples that one of them would betray him. Judas, who John wrote had been entered by the devil himself, then left the group and disappeared into the night, going to the Jewish religious leaders to betray Jesus.
The stage was now set. Jesus had deliberately and with great purpose put himself in harm';s way by coming to Jerusalem. Judas was about to betray him, and that would lead to his arrest, trial, and death. But first, Jesus had some final words for the eleven remaining disciples — as well as what is probably the most amazing prayer recorded in the Bible.
How did Jesus demonstrate who his betrayer would be?
What did Jesus say Peter would do on the night before his arrest and crucifixion? (See John 13:36–38.)