The disciples had already occupied their places around the U-shaped tables. The food was on the table, and the meal was about to begin. Still no one offered to perform the duty of a servant. The water-pitcher, the wash basin, and the apron towel, placed there in the plain sight of all, frowned upon them.
If there were nothing more at stake then the naked act of footwashing, Jesus’ response would seem petty, unbearably rigid. It would sound like fake humility: “I command you to let me be humble and let me wash your feet – or your fired. — DA Carson
Above all, keep loving one another earnestly, since love covers a multitude of sins. 9 Show hospitality to one another without grumbling. 10 As each has received a gift, use it to serve one another, as good stewards of God’s varied grace: 11 whoever speaks, as one who speaks oracles of God; whoever serves, as one who serves by the strength that God supplies—in order that in everything God may be glorified through Jesus Christ. To him belong glory and dominion forever and ever. Amen. – 1 Peter 4:8-11 (ESV)
Let love be genuine. Abhor what is evil; hold fast to what is good. 10 Love one another with brotherly affection. Outdo one another in showing honor. 11 Do not be slothful in zeal, be fervent in spirit, serve the Lord. — Romans 12:9-11 (ESV)