Washing the disciples feet

Discussion in 'Bible Study' started by JohnC, Jul 21, 2015.

  1. John 13 - Washing the disciples feet... What's really going on here.

    Cross ref to Ezekiel 36:24-27
    Here - we see the promise to Israel... God will regather Israel from the nations, THEN wash them with clean water. He will cleanse them from their filthiness and idolatry....

    John 13:7-8 give us a clue that there's a whole lot more going on here than at first glance... This is a serious enough matter that Jesus proclaims "If I do not wash you, you have no part with Me"... BUT - it's also mysterious... 13:7 "What I do you do not realize now, but you will understand hereafter".....

    Also - 13:10 gives additional insight "He who has bathed needs only to wash his feet, but is completely clean; and you are clean, but not all of you"

    What IS going on here?

    This isn't simply an act of compassion and service as some teach - it goes WAY deeper than this...

    On the one hand - This is figurative of the WASHING that God will do after Regathering Israel.... The 12 (+ however many other disciples) were washed in ONE go... All of them - good and "Bad".... This symbolizes God's prophesied cleansing of the NATION of Israel after being gathered....

    On the other hand, we should not ignore the immense personal application as Gentile believers - "If I do not wash you - you have no part in me." Jesus is in effect saying - You do not understand, you "washing" yourself is not good enough. Jesus must wash us to complete the cleansing. That's why it's so important that the LEADERSHIP performs this "washing" as Jesus did to his disciples... They are the ones who stand as representatives of God to the assembly. This presents the symbolism of God washing us to cleanse us from "Sin" that we do not perceive and we do not act to "Bathe" ourselves from.... This symbolizes completing our purification for HIS purposes... (Psalm 51:1-10, especially 2 and 7) It's not an act to simply re-do that which we did for ourselves, but to complete the purification by doing the things that we don't or can't do for ourselves (John 13:10).

    so... The "Bathing" referenced in 13:10 - this is symbolized by OUR baptism... Our own personal acts of repentance where WE work to conquer and overcome error and rebellion within our lives through the Spirit and Power of God... This "Bathing" is OUR working to cleanse ourselves from the error and rebellion that WE perceive.... But - there is a SECOND washing required - that washing which Jesus himself provided the Disciples - which they HAD to receive from Him or they could have no part in Him..... WE must individually submit to this second "Cleansing" at the Hand of God which cleanses us from the error and rebellion which we may not perceive - but yet which hinders us from experiencing true communion with God. This is the process that stands behind Psalm 51... That to COMPLETE my cleansing - God must cleanse me...

    Then - Jesus commands that as He has done - so we should also do likewise... So.. As faithful disciples of Jesus - WE must also work to cleanse eachother... "Wash" the things which they have not cleansed by their own "Bathing".... This is not a corporate ritual for the Masses who aren't committed to Christ - but rather an intimate effort conducted with The Faithful to COMPLETE their being made suitable for God's purposes so that we can truly experience the fullness of God's plan and truly take part in His rest.

    Those of us in leadership and authority we must completely remove the "Cloak" of position and propriety when doing this.... Making ourself the "Slave" to the other to accomplish this task - recognizing that it will take difficult, concerted effort that WE must perform personally... We cannot delegate this to others, put it in a manual of conduct, or handle this in the public forum... We cannot perform this task with sweeping oratory from The Pulpit - it must be done in the intimacy of close relationship. This "Washing" may well be a difficult task... It may well require unwelcome effort and committment to truly surface and work through issues with eachother and those who are under us...

    BUT - the blessings are tremendous..

    Thanks
     

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