2008-05-28 - Fresh Paint
Orginally Published 2004-05-27
John 13:10 Jesus said to him, "He who has bathed needs only to wash his feet, but is completely clean; and you are clean, but not all of you." (NAS)
We are painting several rooms of our house. A few of the walls are particularly in need of a fresh coat of paint. It is immediately gratifying to see the color cover old marks and hand prints. Once the whole wall is done, the edging done and the paint is dry, the wall is refreshed. Once the room is done and the furniture and pictures are returned, the room is ready for use again.
Jesus is once again being very patient with Peter. Peter has gone from not wanting his Lord to stoop to washing Peter's feet, to "wash my head and hands as well". With Peter flying to opposite ends of the spectrum, Jesus brings him back to the center again. Just like we who are Christians, Peter's salvation was assured and his sins were forgiven. Jesus was explaining that Peter need only ask forgiveness for this day - washing the dirt of the world from his feet in prayer.
We are also to pray for each other and with each other. If Jesus is our example, then the patience shown to Peter should be an indicator of the grace we should show each other. Peter was aghast with what he was seeing before him and missing Jesus' point entirely. This is not unlike you and I at times. We need to remember than when someone is misunderstanding us.
The Christian who is willing to routinely take this daily inventory will learn from mistakes and be encouraged by victories. Is it horrible to miss a day? No. But it is our loss as individuals. This also focuses our hearts and minds on the day from a more eternal perspective. We all have work to do, be it at an office, changing diapers and cooking meals, going to school, etc. Our view of the events of the day will be shifted by our focus.
Paint does indeed make a room more presentable. But sin must be cleansed, not covered over. Our sins were forgiven in eternity past, and were paid for at Golgotha with the blood of Jesus Christ. The power of death was crushed by the resurrection of Jesus. And we are cleansed by His suffering and death. And we have eternal life through His resurrection. As Jesus explained to Peter, only our feet need to be washed - the daily dirt of the world only needs to be removed. And we can rejoice in our salvation and new life.
Mark 11:25 "And whenever you stand praying, forgive, if you have anything against anyone; so that your Father also who is in heaven may forgive you your transgressions. (NAS)