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In Middle Eastern countries, it was the slaves who washed the feet of guests; here Christ took the place of a slave. He makes this clear to His disciples: if their Lord and Teacher has washed their feet, then they should wash one another’s feet, that is, serve each other in humility. This must have been a striking rebuke to the Twelve, for just that evening they had been debating who was to be the greatest! (See Luke 22:24–27)

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