So after he had washed their feet, and had taken his garments, and was set down again, he said unto them, Know ye what I have done to you?
Jesus washing the disciples’ feet was a picture of His mission. He left heaven to do the dirty work. The Lord of all creation laid aside who He truly was to take upon Himself the mantle of a servant. He did the cleansing and then took back His rightful garments and sat down again. He died to cleanse us from our sin in the form of a servant, but now He sits down again clothed in His majesty and glory. He takes back His rightful place at the right hand of the Father. He takes His rest from His saving work until He comes again.
So do we understand what Jesus has done to us? He didn’t just show us that we are to be servants for Him and to serve others. He didn’t just demonstrate the importance of humility and submission. He wasn’t just showing us the importance of being clean. He was showing us that the cleansing had to come from Him, that He—Jesus, the Son of God—had to be the one to do the washing, or else we could have no part with Him. He was showing us that His purpose was to make us clean in a way that no one else could.
There is power in the blood of Jesus, and it is a necessary component of our salvation. Without it, there is no forgiveness, no freedom from sin, no satisfying the wrath of God. Without Jesus’ sinless blood being offered as a sacrifice, we’re still lost in our sin. Without that holy element, salvation would be impossible. But He was willing to give it. He was willing to leave heaven. He was willing to take on flesh. He was willing to die. He was willing to make that most impossible thing possible.
So now when we rise up from the table, we are totally cleansed because Jesus has done His work on us. Now that big black stain sin had left on our souls is completely gone. And because of what Jesus came and did for us, we can go out and do some things for Him. Purified and spotless and made new by the Son of God, we can live for Him. We can become like Him. We can demonstrate His love, shine His light, be His hands and feet in the world around us. May we truly understand what the work of Christ was all about and go forth ourselves to fulfill His purposes in and through us.