The Washing of Water

John 13  •  3 min. read  •  grade level: 5
(John 13)
The display of the grace in Christ did not hinder the wickedness in Judas, and the display of Judas' wickedness did not hinder the Lord's grace.
The Lord was about to leave His disciples, but He was going to be their servant, and to make them clean. Though He was going to be so near to God, He must go on serving them—not in being with them down here at the board, but in the Father's house. He would give them a place with Him, and He must do that which was needful to enable them to have communion and comfort. Thus, though He was going away, they would have still greater blessing. He not only would bear with our manners down here, but make us fit to be with Him where He is. This washing is for communion, not justification. For justifying the blood was needed; water here. The body is washed with water, (Heb. 10,) referring to regeneration. But this is not that washing, it is only the feet. He is not our servant any more to shed blood; which is done once for all; but feet-washing is for communion. The laver before the tabernacle aims symbolical of the same thing.
For communion there must not be a spot upon you, and therefore the continual need of feet-washing as we pass through this world. (ver. 7.) They did not understand it then, but they did when the Holy Ghost is given; and we do understand it now.
None can wash another for God. It must be Christ Himself. You must have the word of Christ by the power of the Holy Ghost, to help another in this matter. Man's word is not enough. Man's word is no better than man's word. God's word is God's word.
He that has been bathed as a priest needs not to be washed again altogether; but his feet touch the world and he becomes defiled. Christ, as a priest, washes them. We, too, have priestly duties.
The sin of Judas was so black because it was in the presence of grace. There was a constant incessant hardening in the presence of Jesus. He took the money that grace gave the Lord, to live upon, and he went on and on till he came to the point where grace was most fully manifested. Then his wickedness comes to the highest point. Satan enters into him; he goes and kisses Him when he had betrayed Him; he uses the familiarity grace had given him with Christ to betray Him. See him in the garden of Gethsemane. It is not like Peter who was rash, and drew his sword—but in Judas it was a constant, steady process of hardening. The Lord gives the sop out of His own dish—a proof of friendship, and to whom?
When the wickedness of Judas is fully out, then the glory of Christ is without veil. There was time when obedience was so shown, and when love was so shown, as when He gave Himself up (ver. 81.): not only the fact, but the depth of the work of grace. Because He bore our sins, He is the Son of man at the right hand of God.
“God shall straightway glorify Him.” He must go directly, but He will come again, to display His glory in the world. We anticipate the glory in which we shall be manifested; and He must take away from us all that is inconsistent with that glory into which He has entered, and for which we wait. This is signified by the washing the disciples' feet; and it is because we “are clean” that we need it. We never get particular cleansing until we are clean every whit. Now He is girded as our servant, to maintain our communion. We are looked upon as in heaven because seated in Christ who is there—one with Him there; but our members are down here on the earth, and it is these which need to be mortified.