“Jesus said to him, “The one who has bathed does not need to wash, except for his feet, but is completely clean.” – John 13:10a
Recently, while camping, I was out walking down a dusty dirt road fairly early in the morning and this verse came to mind as I looked down at my feet. Ii hadn’t been that long since I had showered, yet my feet looked as if they hadn’t seen water (much less soap) in a while.
In Jesus’ day, they wore sandals and walked on dirty roads all the time. When you entered someone’s home, the lowest ranking servant was tasked with washing feet. This was what Jesus was doing for the disciples when Peter protested. He felt it was just wrong for Jesus to be put in such a subservient role.
But, Jesus took that moment to teach about spiritual cleansing. He told them if you’ve bathed and your feet get dirty, you need to wash them, but you needn’t go take a full bath again. Spiritually, if we have been cleansed by His saving grace, we are not made perfect, yet – and the lesson from that is twofold.
The first thing we need to learn is that when we have gone to Him in repentance and are forgiven, we are indeed given His righteousness. This assurance brings us a freedom to live as His child.
The second thing is that we still get “dirty” by our daily sinful actions and thoughts, and we need to go to Him often for His cleansing forgiveness.
My prayer this week is we will realize our need for spiritual cleansing through God’s amazing grace – whether for the first time or a daily “wash up.”