Joseph Prince - Be Washed By The Water Of The Word
Praise God. Well, God gave me a promise, and when I was away recently, and God says, "I'll return you", from the book of Job, "I'll return you to the days of your youth", and I believe that's gonna happen to us. He's gonna return us to the days of our youth. However you wanna meditate on that verse and you know, it's a verse from God, and God said to Job that "Because I have found a messenger". "I have found an atonement". Literally, in Hebrew, "I've found an atonement, a ransom. His flesh shall be fresher than a child's. He shall return to the days of his youth".
It's God's Word, so let's claim it, amen? Praise the Lord. Another thing the Bible tells us is that, "With long life will I satisfy you," and that is Psalms 91, and it comes after Psalms 90. In Psalms 90, it says that... it's a psalm of Moses, Psalms 90. It talks about the children of Israel in the wilderness, and they said that, "The days of our years are 70, and if by reason of strength it'll be 80".
A lot of people use that as a criteria, and they'll say that God only promise us 70 to 80 years old, but you must understand that they are quoting from Psalms 90, a psalm of Moses of the children of Israel when they were undergoing judgment. They were under... in fact, you read the verses before the 70 and 80 years old in Psalms 90. It says, "Your wrath, who can endure your anger"? And then by wrath, there is a sandwich of verses talking about God's anger, God's wrath. So we are not in Psalms 90. We are in Psalms 91, "With long life will I satisfy you". Can I have a good amen? Praise God.
And it's important that you release your faith to believe God, because the thing is this: Faith does not make it happen, like I said last week. I wanna recap on some things because I'm continuing from last week where we left off. Faith does not make the existence of the sun real. Even though we don't feel the sun now because we are in this building, the sun is real. Whether you believe it or you don't believe it, your belief or unbelief does not make it real or not real. But what happened is that your faith is like a window that allows the light and the warm to come in. Can I have a good amen?
There's nothing big about faith. You know, God doesn't want anything on man's part but you say faith. Yes, but if you make faith into something that you have to work at, then faith becomes that wall of partition between you and God or you and whatever God has for you. Yes, it's by grace through faith, but even that faith is the gift of God, so we don't have to focus on the window, amen? We have to focus on the fact that the sun is shining, amen. Praise the Lord. And that window does not create the warmth, nor does it create the light. It allows the light and the warmth to come into my room, amen.
So you know what? I'm looking forward for big windows, right? But it's not a question of faith. It's now between you and God. And always remember this: When you're believing God for a miracle, look to the Lord. And like I said last week, the blood saves. Not only the blood saves, the blood heals, but when you believe the blood heals, when you partake of Communion, when you believe the blood heals, God looks at you, and God says that's faith in the blood, son. But it's not for me to say I have faith in the blood. My part is to say, "The blood saves. The blood heals". It's God's part to say, "That's faith in the blood". My part is what? Believe that the blood alone saves. The blood alone heals, amen? Then God turns around, and God says, "That's faith in the blood".
So we have taught so much about faith until faith has become like a middle wall that separates us from our miracle. Another thing we learned last week is this, that the first two groups that goes into the lake of fire, in Revelations 21, are the fearful and unbelieving, long before the, you know, the drug pushers, the whoremongers, before the... in the Greek, pornos. That should tell you sexually immoral. Long before those lists comes up that goes in the lake of fire, the Bible talks about the first two groups, fearful and unbelieving. I'm recapping so that we go from there, okay?
So people don't really judge that as sin, fear and unbelieving, yet those are the two groups that lead all the rest, even all the pornos into the lake of fire. And the church is so strong on overt sin that we forget this intrinsic, this inward sin that God says is worse than anything else, because fear and unbelief is the mother of all sins because we fear we don't have enough. We fear we are being left out, therefore, we cut corners, we cheat, we lie because we don't believe God will supply.
So the first two groups is fearful and unbelieving. Then we ask the question, confession of sin, the way that it's taught. The way that it's taught is that unless you confess your sin, God will not forgive you, okay? Now, I believe in confession of sin. I have a latest clip from one of my sermons that we put on YouTube recently called "Joseph Prince Believes in Confession of Sins", because there are people out there who are saying that I don't believe in... no, no, no. I believe in confession of sin, but it's the word confess is homologeo. Logos, homo means the same word, to say the same with God about our sin.
When you sin, you must say this: "It is a sin". We don't deny it. Number two, God has forgiven it. That's to say the same thing with God because Christ has paid the price for it. It cost God his Son, amen. It cost the Lord great sufferings. I mean, the other day I was watching the movie "The Passion" once again, and I wept again, you know, and again, it's like the fresh, you must always keep the cross fresh in your heart and mind. Paul told the Galatians, "Who has bewitched you, that you should not obey the truth," which is the Gospel. "Before whose eyes Jesus Christ has been evidently crucified among you"?
Now, the Galatians, when he said that to the Galatians, they were not there at Calvary. Well, when Paul preached, Paul preached in such a way, it was so graphic the first time Paul preached to them that they saw Jesus like a placard right in front of them in Paul's preaching. So, good ministry will always put the cross before you so that when you sin, you revert back to the cross. But this idea, "Unless I confess, I am not forgiven," is gonna hold you back. Many of them, not all of them, but many of them, I can tell you stories, they cannot receive, because deep down, they feel that there's some unforgiven sin somewhere, or there is some sin that God cannot forgive.
If we had just gone by the biblical injunction in James where it says that, "Let the sick call for the elders, and let the elders pray over him, anointing with oil in the name of the Lord. And the prayer of faith shall save the sick. And if he has committed sins, they shall be forgiven him". If only we told the sick, "Your sin is not gonna hold back the healing of God flowing into your body. It cannot stop it". And if you think you have committed sins and that's why you are in your condition, if you have committed sins, read here: "They shall be forgiven him". One fell swoop, the same power that heals your body removes your sins if we had only spoken the truth.
And that's why I'm so strong on this fact that people need to be free from guilt and condemnation before they are able to receive from God. And this idea of 1 John 1:9, which is only one verse in the New Testament, Paul never wrote it in his three-fourths of Paul's... Paul wrote three-fourths of the New Testament. He never mentioned confession of sins once; nonetheless, the fearful and unbelieving go into the lake of fire. We find that Jesus, when he appeared, this is post-cross. This is now Resurrection. This is after his earthly life. What we term as his earthly life, he is now in his resurrected form.
The Bible says the disciples were in the Upper Room for fear of the Jews, not the fear of God, for fear of the Jews. They were all behind closed doors in the Upper Room for fear of the Jews. Fear, my friend, is sin. Whatever is not of faith is sin. Let's see how the resurrected Lord treats them. He appears to them. The Bible says his first word, "Peace be unto you". Wow. They were in fear. They were in sin. Based on our tradition, they're out of fellowship. They need to confess that fear, and yet the Lord came to them as if he's not conscious of their sin. Instead, he says, "Peace," then he gave them the divine receipts, the foundation for their peace. He showed them his hands and his side. These are the divine receipts, the finished work, the payment for them to have peace, not only that, these people, fear-filled disciples, the next thing he did was he breathed on them the Holy Spirit, not one word about "Confess your sin".
I believe in confession of sin. In fact, when I say thank God that through Christ's blood, we have forgiveness of sins, we are not like the Gnostics who deny that they have sin. For you to preach forgiveness of sins, you must believe that you have sins, or else what is forgiveness of sins? All right, chapter 1 was written to Gnostics, especially Gnostic Jews. 1 John 2, you find him saying, "My little children". That's when he writes to the believers, but in 1 John 1, there's nothing about "My little children".
After Jesus breathed the Holy Spirit on his disciples, the very same chapter, the Bible tells us that Thomas wasn't there. Thomas was absent from that meeting. Thomas was in unbelief. They went to tell Thomas that same evening, after the Lord breathed on them, the Lord spoke peace to them, they came to Thomas and said, "We saw the Lord". Thomas says, "Except I see the nail prints in his hands and in his side, I will not believe". The fearful and apistos, unbelieving. "I will not believe," he said, and for one week, he live in sin. I said for one week he live in sin, in unbelief. Whatever is not of faith is sin.
Come on. Next Sunday, Jesus appeared in the Upper Room. This time, Thomas was there, and Jesus went to Thomas, made a beeline to Thomas and said, "Thomas, reach out your hand and feel the nail prints in my hands and feel my side," and be not apistos, be not unbelieving, but believing. What was Thomas's response? "I confess. I'm so sorry. Forgive me".? No, "My Lord and my God". Every true repentance is a fresh revelation of our Lord Jesus Christ. He made them repent without even using the word repent. He made them change their minds, which is what repentance is all about, without even saying repent. Are you listening?
So this idea that, you know, unless you confess your sins, your sins are not forgiven puts you on a never-ending cycle of wondering whether you've confessed all your sins, and you know something? If you advocate that and you believe in that, you can confess all your sins of the day if you want to before you go to bed. Don't be lazy. Kneel down by the side of your bed. Ask God to show you all your sins of that day, and you can start from the time you first woke up in the morning and name them one by one. See what a glorious sleep you will have. And even people who believe in that don't really confess. I believe in it. I confess my sins like crazy. You know, those who knew me when I was 17, they will see me, when I talk to you halfway, I will... Then I will continue talking. What was I doing? Confessing my sins because I just realized I exaggerated.
Now, for you all, you all laugh, but exaggeration is sin, so I had to get right with God... All right? If you look at 1 John before verse 9 comes the divine sandwich. Verse 8 says, "If we say we have no sin, inherent sin, we deceive ourself, and the truth is not in us," that is, if we say we have no inherent sin. Do any of us deny that we have inherent sin? Sin in our flesh? No. That's why we are preaching grace so strong. Now, the other sandwich, after verse 9 is verse 10, "If we say we have not sinned," now it's a sinful deed. "If we say we have not done anything wrong, we make God a liar, and his word is not in us". Are you listening, people? Amen.
And how do you explain in chapter 2, 1 John 2, all right, this is right after 1 John 1:9, a few verses right after 1 John 1:9, and this is the first time you have that phrase, little children. So I keep on telling people and I keep on repeating myself, the whole entire epistle is not written to the Gnostics, only chapter 1, and that's why it starts off by saying, "That which we have seen, our eyes have looked upon, our hands have handled", remember what Jesus said to Thomas? "Handle me. A spirit does not have flesh and bones". It's the same thought. John, who is the writer here as well, John says, "We touched him," even Thomas touched him. "We handled him. He's not a phantom". Because the Gnostic says that Christ did not come in the flesh. He came in the Spirit. There's no body. They say that, all right? And they deny that they have sin.
So 1 John was written primarily to the Gnostic Jews, and by the way, Peter's letters, John's letters, they were all written to the Jews primarily because the Bible says in Galatians, they gave Paul the right hand of fellowship that Paul should go to the uncircumcised Gentiles. They, Peter, James, and John, to the circumcised. So, when you read their letters, you must understand it's very Jewish.
If someone says, "Well, Pastor, the 1 John 1:9 is confessing your sins," that means you admit you have sins. It's in the present tense. I will tell you, in Mark chapter 1, we'll come back to this, Mark chapter 1, about John the Baptist, "Then all the land of Judea, and those from Jerusalem, went out to John the Baptist and were all baptized by him in the Jordan River, confessing their sins". Are they saved? I don't think they are saved. They have not yet met Christ, these Jewish people that came to John the Baptist. But they came to John to be baptized, confessing their sins, and do you know something? Confessing is present tense in the Greek.
Does that mean they are still at the River Jordan in Israel today in 2015, confessing their sins? No. Present tense can also mean what is characteristic. Doesn't mean always present tense means something's going on, all right, an action is going on. It also means something characteristic like "The blood of Jesus Christ cleanses us from all sin". You say, "Soap cleanses". The blood of Jesus cleanses. Both of these in the Greek will be put in the present tense, something characteristic. Are you with me so far?
So, folks, Jewish people confess their sins even when they come to, even that verse, for example, 1 John 1:9, which I believe is salvation verse when they come to God in sin as confessing their sins. If I live before Jesus came, I'll be confessing my sins every day. Not only that, periodically I'll bring a lamb if I can afford a lamb. I cannot afford a lamb, I'll bring a pair of doves to the temple for a sin offering, and then I confess my sins. Like Daniel, Nehemiah, they confessed their sins because they were under the law. Friend, we, 1 John 2:12, once again, "I write to you", this is right after 1 John 1:9. He writes to you, "I write to you, little children".
Now, little children is a term of endearment for the family. Because your sins are forgiven you for his name's sake. And forgiven there is perfect tense, which cannot be repeated, once and for all, your sins, past, present, future. Hey, John, don't you think you are presumptuous when you are writing this letter to people? And it takes a while, a few days, before your letter reaches them. By then, how do you know that you can just say completely that these people, in an unqualified fashion, you can say in a way that all these people are forgiven of their sins as long as they believe on Jesus? Maybe someone just woke up this morning and had some strife with their spouse, someone has just had some bitterness and some fallout in their relationship with their brother in Christ. Hey, how can John say that? Obviously, John knew something that we don't today. John was confident, if you are saved, your sins are forgiven.
Now, if 1 John 1:9, same book, 1 John, if 1 John 1:9 is written to the believer, and this is written to the believer, we have a double-talk. We got a problem, 'cause 1 John 1:9 says, "You confess, then he is faithful and just to forgive". Then they say, "Well, well, you know, this one is judicial forgiveness; 1 John 1:9, family forgiveness". Read. Can you read now? "I write to you, little children". What judicial? This is a family term. This is a family term. You cannot call this judicial and 1 John 1:9 family. Man put those ideas there. This is family forgiveness as well.
So, when you teach judicially, we're all forgiven, past, present, and future of all our sins; experientially we need fatherly forgiveness for our daily life. Bottom line, you're still not forgiven. There is some sin somewhere. The devil is not stupid. He will come to you and tell you, "You know why this came on you? There's some unconfessed sin". You must come to a place of robust faith where we know all our sins are forgiven. Okay?
Now, I wanna say something else to those grace teachers that are teaching. Some of them, they make sweeping statements, and I wish that they will study the Word of God more. They get some of the things about forgiveness and all that, and they run on a tangent, and they say, "There's no more cleansing anymore for the believer". Don't make statements like that, all right? Don't stand up and say, "You know, once we are forgiven of all our sins, there's no more cleansing or any kind of cleansing or washing," 'cause I'll tell you right now, there is a cleansing, but it's not a cleansing by the blood. It's a washing of the water, and that's a message for the church, and that's what I wanna share with you today. Ready?
All right, let's go to John 13, and I wanna start off by telling you that this has nothing to do with 1 John 1:9. Someone says, "Well, there you see? There's another cleansing". No, no, no, no, 1 John 1:9 reminds you of your sin, makes you sin-conscious. Like I said, a salvation verse. "Do I confess my sins today, Joseph Prince"? "Do you confess your sins"? I do. If I tell God, Father, I did that just now. "Father, I thank you I can say, 'I'm sorry.'" "No problem". When you are in the presence of someone who loves you and accepts you, you can be frank, but I'm not confessing to be forgiven. I'm confessing because I am forgiven, okay?
All right, so I'm not against that, okay? Please keep that in mind. But the thing is this: There is a cleansing, but it's a cleansing that doesn't make you conscious of your sin. I think I need to establish this before we go through this washing of the water. Hebrews 10. Hebrews 10 tells us that if all those sacrifices of the Day of Atonement, during the Passover, during all the feast days, if all those lamb sacrifices offered, thousands and thousands, in 1,500 years, offered upon Jewish altars, cannot do what the blood of Jesus does, and what did the blood of Jesus do for us? Read, "For then would these sacrifices not have ceased to be offered? For the worshipers, once purified", hapax in the Greek. Once is hapax, which is once and for all. Once you are purified, you would have no more consciousness of sins.
Today, they say that the teaching that makes you no more conscious of sins is a dangerous teaching, and yet this Bible that is God-breathed and as we pore over the fountain of life as we read, every word is important, every nuance, every feature of God's Word. For the child of God that knows it's God-breathed, he will pore over it and meditate on it because there's life there. There is virtue there. And it says once, hapax in Greek, once and for all purified. If those sacrifices, the Jewish sacrifices had worked, then the worshipers, "once purified would have had no more consciousness of sins. But in those sacrifices there is a reminder of sins every year".
So, we have no more consciousness of sins versus reminder of sins. Which ministry are you? That's the reason why I preach the way I do, people. I'm of the belief when people are free from consciousness of sins, not just saying, "Well, you know what? Sin doesn't matter to God anymore". No, no, free through understanding that one sacrifice for all time, it causes in you a gratefulness, a thankfulness, yeah, even worship to God. Look at it again. No more consciousness of sins versus reminder of sins every year and yet our preaching, our ministry many a times is a reminder of sins, because a reminder of sins means the blood didn't work. The next verse, "It's not possible that the blood of bulls and goats could take away sins".
Why do the Jewish people have reminder of sins every year? Because it's not possible for the blood of bulls and goats to take away sins. And when you and I, we have a reminder of sins every time we come to God's house, we have it from the pulpit, we have it to each other and all that, we are saying the blood of Jesus could not take away sins. If my debt, my financial debt has been paid by a generous benefactor who loves me, and I still act uneasy, queasy in the presence of my former creditor, it's an insult to the one that paid my debt. Hmm? But is there a cleansing? This is the conscience, no more consciousness of sins. Yes, there is, and it's for the lack of knowledge of this that the body of Christ is also sick.
I'm gonna tell you something about the body of Christ knows about forgiveness through the blood, but they do not know about this daily washing of the water of the Word. I'm gonna tell you what is being done right now, what Jesus is doing to you. Number two, what is the nature of this water before you leave? And I tell you this, if you understand this, not only this washing of water will cleanse you of your daily defilements, there is a defilement, but it will keep you healthy. So, let's go right into it.
John 13, "Before the Feast of the Passover, when Jesus knew", this is the upper room. Before Jesus was betrayed, in fact, in the process of being betrayed. "When Jesus knew that His hour had come that He should depart from this world to the Father, having loved His own who were in the world, He loved them to the end". To the end here is not a measure of time, it's a measure of extent. He loved them to the uttermost, so beautiful. When he saw the cross in front, he knew that all of them will be left without a shepherd. He knew that the devil had put in Judah's heart, he loved them and this time he loved them to the fullest. Amazing. You know how it's like before you go for a long trip? You look at your little boy and you hug him for a longer time, at that moment you loved him to the end, not time in the Greek, but measure.
"And supper being ended", I don't know why they say supper being ended, because in the Greek it actually says supper being going on, ginomai. In other version it tells you that as well. "The devil having already put it into the heart of Judas Iscariot, Simon's son, to betray Him," verse 3, "Jesus, knowing the Father had given all things into His hands, and that He had come from God and was going to God, rose from supper, laid aside His garments, took a towel and girded Himself".
Now, stop. He rose from what? Supper. Now, there is something very beautiful in terms of type. He's about to die on the cross and go back to the Father. He rose from supper, supper, the memorial of his death. He rose from his death. It's a picture of resurrection. What he's gonna do when he is resurrected, okay? What's he gonna do? He laid aside his garments, took a towel, and girded himself. He took on the garb of his servant. Isn't that amazing? No wonder John, in the Book of Revelation, when John saw him, this John who leaned on his bosom, this John called himself the disciple whom Jesus loved, when he saw his master full of glory, he fell at his feet like one dead. And the Bible says he saw him girded with a golden, this time it's a golden girdle, though in heaven he still serves.
There are four gospels, you have different features of our Lord Jesus, Matthew, Mark, Luke, and John. Matthew, he's portrayed as the king. That's why in Matthew it starts off by saying, "The generation of Jesus Christ, the son of David, the son of Abraham". Wait a minute, son of David first, then son of Abraham? But don't you know Abraham came before David? Yet it says the son of David, the son of Abraham, why? Because David was a king and to Abraham was a promise given. It's a book of the king. That's why you have the Sermon on the Mount. That's the constitution of the king, amen?
And how does a king use his power? The first thing he did after the Sermon on the Mount, he came down the mountain, used his power to cleanse, to heal, his words to lift, to encourage. What a king. What a king. In Gospel of Mark, you don't have his pedigree mentioned because a servant, and that's how Mark portrays Jesus, as a servant. In the Gospel of Mark it begins with straightaway his ministry, and you find this chapter in chapter 1 alone of Mark immediately, straightaway he got out of the water. Immediately, Jesus went. Immediately, immediately, why? It's a picture of the worker, the tireless laborer.
In the Gospel of Luke, he's portrayed as a man and because he's a man, he has ancestors in terms of his natural family, Mary and Joseph, and it's traced all the way to Adam, whereas in Matthew, it's traced only to Abraham. Then the Gospel of John where he's portrayed as God, there is no pedigree. God has no pedigree. It starts with, "In the beginning was the word and the word was with God, and the word was God, and the word became flesh and dwelt among us," amen?
So, the four faces of the Tabernacle you find this on the veil, you find this almost everywhere in the Tabernacle is you have the face of the lion, Gospel of Matthew, the king of the beast. Then you have the face of the ox, the tireless laborer. Then you have the face of a man on a veil. Then you have the face of man is Gospel of Luke. Then you have the face of the eagle, God in the heavenlies. Wow, sorry, I got distracted. The beauty of our Lord Jesus. He rose again.
So, you know which Gospel ends... all the Gospel endings are very interesting. In Matthew, the last chapter of Matthew, after he rose from the dead, you don't see him go back to heaven. He's still on earth commissioning the disciples, go into all the world, the great commission. It's as if he's still on earth, because it's the gospel of the king. So, he ends there with him commissioning, right? But in the Gospel of Mark, how does it end? It ends with the disciples going around and the Lord working with them. The last verse of the last chapter of Mark, the Lord working with them with signs and wonders confirming the Word. And now even in heaven, John saw him with a golden girdle. He's still serving you. It's pride not to allow him to serve you.
So, what does he want to do? He's about to do an action right now, he's about to do an action right now that many of us think, we in the church we think we understand, but actually we don't, because Jesus said, when we say that sometimes we practice feet washing, you know, we wash one another's feet. Now, I'm not knocking that, but if it's just natural, physical feet washing, why did Jesus tell Peter, when Peter says, "You must not wash my feet," Jesus says, "What I do now, you don't understand, but you will know later". Didn't Peter understand what is feet washing?
So, it's obviously there's a deeper meaning to the feet washing. So, let's go on. "He rose from supper, took a towel and girded Himself". Next verse, "After that, He poured water into a basin and began to wash the disciples' feet". He's portraying to us what he's doing right now in heaven after he's risen from the dead. "He poured water into a basin and began to wash the disciples' feet, and to wipe them with the towel with which He was girded". Girded means what? It's like a belt. He had a towel, all right, he took off his shirt, all right, his outward tunic, and then muscles grippling after 30 years of working in a carpenter's workshop. He knelt down and usually this kind of task, you know, in Israel, the thing is this, many a times because they only wear sandals, okay, they walk in the dusty streets of Israel and all that.
Y'all know what it's like, okay? By the time they reach the house, their feet is dusty. So, the lowest of the most lowest slave of the house is the one that does this most menial task of washing your feet before your enter in. So, obviously, they're all looking at each other and said, "No, not me, I was with Jesus on the Mount of Transfiguration". They looked at Thomas, Thomas says, "I doubt it's me". All right, so Jesus took water, and that's a symbolic act. I want you to know that Jesus did it purposefully, all right? He girded himself. Say towel. Say towel. With the towel, he washed the disciples' feet, wiped them, that means dried them with the towel with which he was girded.
Now, I'm gonna tell you right now because of time, washing the disciples' feet is a form of preaching, is a form of... however you do it. If every morning you spend time reading a portion of the Word or daily bread or your daily guide or day by day, all right, whatever it is, you are exposing yourself to the basin of water. Are you listening? And that is what washes your feet. Now, after he washes, he wiped your feet dry with what? The towel with which he was girded like a belt. The towel was around him after he washes, he takes out the towel and he dries it.
What is the towel? Very interestingly the Greek word for towel is lention. Lention means linen cloth, and linen in the Bible is a picture of righteousness. And if that is not enough, let's look at Isaiah 11, verse 5, "And righteousness", messianic Scripture, "And righteousness shall be the girdle of his loins". So, the girdle of his loins, you must know Scripture to interpret Scripture, and what he did was that preachers listen, after you preach the word, even it's a corrective word, even it's a word that is heavy, all right, you need to end up drying their feet with a sense of righteousness. Leave them refreshed that they are the righteousness of God in Christ. Speak if need be.
Now, please don't think that it's just preaching from the pulpit, all right? I'm gonna show you the importance of listening to the Word, whether it's from your friend, whether it's from a book you read, or from the Scriptures itself, whatever it is, expose yourself to the water. Why? If not, you'll be dusty, and when you're dusty, you are the devil's food, because God said to the devil, "Dust you shall eat all the days of your life". Are you listening, people?
Okay, so you need the water, not the blood. I'm gonna prove to you right now. Go back to John 13, "Then Jesus came to Simon Peter. And Peter said to Him, 'Lord, are You washing my feet?' Jesus answered and said to him, 'What I'm doing, you see, you do not understand now". Obviously, he understood that it was physical washing, so I'm not referring to the physical washing. And if you want to practice that and all that as an act of humility, go ahead, but I'm telling you this portion is not about that, it's about something symbolic that is showing us the greater truth that when he goes back to the Father, what he's doing right now to all of us. Hmm?
Do you know right now washing of the water is happening? You have been regenerated by the blood. You had a bath by the blood. What you need daily is wash your feet. And if you can't do it, God will send somebody. In fact, later on he says, "Do you know what I did to you? Do this to one another. Share the Word. Cleanse one another's feet". I'm getting ahead of myself, but Peter said, "Lord, are you washing my feet"? Jesus says, "You will understand this later". Verse 8, "Peter said to Him, 'You will never wash my feet!'"
You know, while I'm talking about the flesh, let me tell you about the flesh. The flesh is either too forward, all right, or too backwards. First, the flesh says, "Huh, you're gonna wash my feet"? He's too backward. Then after the Lord said, "If I do not wash you, you have no part with Me". "Simon Peter said, 'Lord, not my feet only, also my hands and my head!'" So, the flesh is either too backward. "Are you gonna wash my feet"? After that, "Wash everything".
So, the flesh never goes in flow with God. It is always added forward or backwards like a horse or a mule. In fact, before the chapter ends, he told the Lord, "I'll follow you to death". The flesh can be very courageous. The next verse Jesus said, "Before the cock crows, you'll deny me three times". Too coward. The flesh is either too courageous or too coward all in the same chapter. Don't trust our flesh. I don't make, you know, special vows, special promises, or you know, in the beginning of the year, because I know I'll break it. I rely on him. Joseph Prince don't trust in his flesh. Look at what Jesus says, "If I don't wash you, if I don't wash you, you have no part"? No, he did not say this is not a washing of salvation.
Some people say, "This is washing of the water". No, it's not. It's a washing of, listen, if I don't wash you, what happens? You have no part in me, that's how some people interpret. No, in me means salvation. You have no part with me, meta, with me. With me means what? You cannot flow with me, you'll either be too ahead, too behind, you'll not be flowing with me. You need the washing of the water of the Word. I'm so eager to come to the content of the water, but let's just so step by step. Okay, verse 9, "Lord, not my feet only, but also my hands and my head"!
I want to say something here to all of you. Throughout this account you'll find that both, all the disciples, whether it's Thomas, my Lord and my God, whether it's Peter, throughout this entire chapter he calls him, "Lord, Lord, Lord". It's one thing for the writers of the Gospels to say Jesus went here, and Jesus said this and Jesus that and Jesus said this, but I think it's a good practice for us. Nothing wrong with saying Jesus, Jesus. Nothing wrong with that, all right? He doesn't mind. It's his name. But the thing is that can you also say often, "Lord"? Lord. Later on he says, "You call me master and Lord and you say well. If I your master and Lord have done these things, you ought also to do this to one another". Let's call him Lord, not just Jesus, Jesus, Jesus.
Now, nothing wrong with that. I'm not gonna say that from now on no more, no, but learn to say, "Lord, the Lord". It's a confession of Jesus as Lord that is most powerful. As charismatics, we are very, very fast on saying, "Jesus, Jesus, Jesus, Jesus," you know? Again, I'm saying there's nothing wrong, but let's learn to say Lord Jesus or Lord or Lord Jesus Christ often also. Okay, "Lord, not my feet only, but also my hands and my head"! Next verse. Now watch this, "Jesus said to him, 'He who is bathed.'" Bathed means what? All over. That's salvation. That is by the blood. "He who is bathed needs only to wash his feet".
Both bathe, louo in Greek, wash his feet, wash is nipto, two different Greek words are used. One is total salvation. You are saved once and for all. You are washed once and for all by the blood which the main characteristic is what? It cleanses us like soap cleanses. Now, he need only, needs only to wash his feet, 'cause feet is what? For walking, you contract defilements. You know, in our daily life, just walking through this, you go to the barber, you go walk to the mall, you watch television, whatever it is, there are daily defilements, negativism, wrong beliefs, people's wrong beliefs trying to impose in your mind. Subconsciously you accept it, and you listen.
One out of five Americans, one out of five Australians, one out of five Singaporeans will suffer this by the age of 60 or but whatever it is, and you start accepting, you know, and you are defiled. You have changed through the power of right believing. The devil is using it against you. Defilement, you see pictures you shouldn't have seen, but it flashes real fast. You look at a billboard, you can't help it, you are there. It stares at you. Have you seen? No, but you are defiled, your mind is defiled. How do you wash yourself away from all this? Water of the Word. It does not mean you have lost your standing, you're still righteous in the Father's eyes, you are still in splendor with all the merits and the glories and the excellence of our Lord Jesus put on you.
When God looks at you, you never lose that once and for all bath. But your feet is dirty. And grace teachers, please never say there's no more cleansing. No, thank God for that once and for all bath. But there is a daily cleansing. Make sure you avail yourself of it. "Pastor, I'm not the type that reads the Bible a lot". You know something, but you ask the Lord to wash you, he will either cause you to read something, or your friend might call you, say something, all of a sudden you feel the washing. Are you listening, people? So, Jesus says, "He who is bathed," saved, wash once and for all, "needs only to wash his feet, but is completely clean". Say completely clean. And he looks at his disciples and said, "And you are clean, but not all of you".
Now, who is he referring to? Not all of you. Let's finish off that one first. Let's go the next verse. "For he knew who would betray him". That is Judas Iscariot. Therefore, he said, "You are not all clean", okay, got it? So, let's get that out first. Remove Judas Iscariot. All right, and the teaching is what? Once you, you see when you go to the beach, it's good to bring a bottle of water, a huge bottle or a pail, why? After you bathe and all that, or even you play with the water. The other day I was at the beach with my son, and I forgot to, usually I bring a bottle of water, and we just, you know, tread in the water and play with him, but man, the sand will get stuck on your, in between your toes, right? And you wish that on your way to the, to the restroom, right, you can at least have water to clean your feet as you sit down somewhere.
So, likewise after you wash, in those days, Jesus's days, they go to a public bath or the river. But when they come out, there they are washed clean, but then they step on mud. They don't have to go back to the complete bath again. You'll never get saved and re-saved and re-saved. In 1 John 1:9 that he will forgive you, no, that cannot be. You don't get re-forgiven and re-forgiven and re-forgiven. But there is a constant cleansing of water to present the bride glorious without blemish, without spot. Are you with me so far? Are you all learning? Okay, praise God.
Let's find the content of the water, shall we? This one will take the entire chapter of Numbers 19. Numbers, you know that Numbers... I need to do it in Numbers and Leviticus. You all got time? All right, anyway, just to let you know because of time, I'll just tell you what the content is hidden in the book of Numbers. Very interesting because it should be in the book of Leviticus. All the offerings that we know of, sin offering, trespass offering, peace offering, meal offering, burnt offering, they're all found in Leviticus, the book of worship. The book where most Christians, their book is still pasted together, all right, which I love to preach from, okay?
But I love that book. It unveils Jesus, and that's why as grace teachers, it's important we not only say, "The work finished everything". We need to study that work. How finished is finished? How complete is complete? Because everything in the Old Testament... the New Testament gives you the substance, but the Old Testament many times gives you the details. But the funny thing, the amazing thing is this: in all this five offerings in Leviticus, we don't find the ashes of the red heifer mentioned.
Now, say red heifer. You know what's a heifer? A female cow. They choose a female cow that's red in color. There's a practice from Numbers. But Numbers is a book of wandering. Shouldn't this red heifer offering, shouldn't this be in Leviticus with all the five offerings? Herein is the wonderful thing about inspiration of Scripture. If man wrote it, if a Jewish rabbi wrote it, he will compile everything in Leviticus. But because this book is from God, he puts it solely in the book of wandering, the book of Numbers, when Israel's wandering in the wilderness, because the ashes of the red heifer is not for salvation, it is for your daily walk.
So ashes of the red heifer, chapter 19: "Now the Lord spoke to Moses and Aaron, saying, 'This is the ordinance of the law, which the Lord has commanded, saying, "Speak"'". I'm not going to read the entire chapter. Don't worry, okay? "Speak to the children of Israel, that they bring you a red heifer without blemish". Now, who is the red heifer? Our Lord Jesus. Why is it a female here? Because when it's a male in the Bible it speaks of strength, active. If it's a female, it speaks of passivity, okay? Male, active. Female, passive.
So when you talk about the ashes of the red heifer, because it's a heifer, it's talking about how the Lord will apply this to you. It's not about you applying to you. It's about, hey, Peter didn't take the basin of water and say, "I clean myself". So don't leave with this idea. I'm telling you what the Lord would do to you. It's a passive, which means he's active, you are passive. Let's go on, because I want to show you the content of the water, okay? "Speak to the children of Israel, that they bring you a red heifer without blemish". That's our Lord Jesus, without blemish, amen. Peter said he did no sin. Peter, the man of action. He said, "The Lord did no sin". Paul, the man of knowledge, Paul says, "He knew no sin". John, a man of the heart, he says, "In Jesus, in him is no sin". Without blemish. "In which there is no defect, on which a yoke has never come". Inside, outside, he is without sin. No spot, no defect.
I told you, every word in the Bible is precious. Every word. I wish I can camp here, talk about the Lord. Inward, outward. That's why all these paintings that says he's not good looking, you know, there is no beauty that we should desire him. No, that phrase, there is no beauty, is in the context of Isaiah 53 when he was beaten, spat upon by soldiers, multitude of soldiers, a legion of soldiers and all that, until his face was deformed, and his face was deformed to give you, "Let the beauty of the Lord God be upon us".
Can you imagine a child growing up with no sin in his blood, how radiant, how beautiful, how good looking Jesus is. He is the fairest, he's the most beautiful of 10,000. Thirty years working without modern tools in a carpenter workshop, stonemasonry, his biceps, my best friend... Whatever's there. "Blessed are those who have not seen," Jesus said to Thomas, "and yet believe". Okay, so this is our Lord Jesus. Okay, what happens? Now, listen, the next verse says: "You shall give it to Eleazar the priest". I wish I have time to tell you Eleazar, his name means helper, and Jesus said of the Holy Spirit, and he was speaking Aramaic, in Hebrew, he would say, "Eleazar, I will send Eleazar to you".
So the Holy Spirit was the one that brought Jesus outside the camp. Eleazar will bring the red heifer outside the camp. Hebrews 13 says Jesus was crucified outside the camp, outside the Jewish camp, amen, fulfilling the type. "It shall be slaughtered before him". Notice, the Holy Spirit didn't slaughter him, didn't kill him, but the heifer was slaughtered before Eleazar, okay? Now, what happens? It's very interesting. Church, listen. The entire thing, all right, what happened is that it's slaughtered, it's burnt until it become ashes. They would throw in the scarlet, the cedar, and the hyssop, representing the smallest to the greatest of nature, all right? It's all in the finished work of Christ, and then become ashes.
But the blood, earlier on they take the blood and they sprinkle it seven times before the temple. Jewish tradition says it was done on the Mount of Olives before the Temple Mount, facing the Temple Mount, seven times, okay? Which means perfect reconciliation, perfect redemption. Are you listening, people? But they keep the ashes. I said they keep the ashes. And it is actually used for, listen carefully, when someone touches death. It's all about dead things. You touch a dead bone, a dead skeleton, a dead carcass, you touch anything dead, you are unclean. And then they must take the ashes of the red heifer and okay, let me just show you two more verses from Numbers 19: "Whoever in the open field touches one who is slain by a sword", death, or who has died, death, bone of man, death, grave, death, shall be unclean seven days. It's all about dead things. "For an unclean person they shall take some of the ashes of the heifer".
Now, how do you get ashes? You burn it. You burn it until the substance cannot be burnt anymore, and what do you have? Ashes. Ashes means the judgment is past. In fact, because it has been judged, it has become ashes. That is the finished work of our Lord Jesus Christ, hallelujah. That means what? That means its time is finished. Keep that in mind. Ashes means what? That means the judgment has gone through it. And the judgment cannot burn anymore. You know how the fire dies? When the carcass becomes ashes, the fire says, "Enough. We have exacted payment". And now the ashes is a reminder of what? Finished. Your sins, finished. The devil says, "I'm going to make sure that you fall sick because of that sin". And God says, "These are the evidence. He was burned already". Jesus became sick with your penalty. Are you listening, people?
So they take the ashes, "burnt for purification from sin," notice that? "And running water," or living water, mayim chayim in Hebrew. "Living water shall be put on them in a vessel". Next verse: "A clean person shall take hyssop and dip it in the water, sprinkle it on the tent", your entire family, "on the vessels", whatever you have, "on the persons", you, yourself, "who were there, and on the one who touched a bone, the slain, the dead, or the grave".
Look up here, people. It's beautiful. The ashes are put one side. It's not thrown away. The ashes are put one side as evidence that payment has been done for your sins. And then these ashes, when someone touches a dead bone, you know, let me explain. A hunter, when he shoots real fast, all right, and he shoots two birds, you know, two birds fall from the branch of the tree, the other five birds fly away, okay? Which bird does he go for? Does he hunt for the five that flew away? No, he looks for the ones that fell to make sure that they are dead. Perhaps there's one that's wounded. He doesn't want it to go away, fly away, because there's still life. The devil doesn't care for those who are dead, but you still have life. You understand? But that's why when we touch death, you know, who's touching death?
I remember one time when I was with my pastors, and I look at a book. It's actually a book, a simple, well, I thought it was a psychology book. Nothing else to browse through, so I pick up the book, and I read through some of the things. Quite interesting, I thought it was quite interesting. Actually, it's a book, a very famous book, on the occult, parapsychology. They put a lot of mixture in. When I put the book back, and I walked away, that whole afternoon I had terrible headaches. I asked the Lord, "What happened, Lord"? And this is how the Lord said to me: "You touched death".
Now, I'm not saying if you have headache right now, okay? I'm not saying every headache is caused by, but here I'm telling you, church, what the Lord said: "You touched death". Sometimes we watch a movie, and we touch death. We are not dead, we are still alive. We are still glorious in God's, the Father's eyes. We are still covered with the merits of Christ. We are still covered with a robe of righteousness, but we touched death. Are you listening, people?
How do you wash it away? It is not by being re-forgiven. It is not by being rewashed in the blood. You don't go back for a bath. You need to wash your feet. How? Start exposing yourself again. Start listening to a sermon that talks about the ashes. Many sermons don't talk about the ashes. They say that you need to burn. You need to sacrifice. You need to produce some ashes yourself. Make sure your sermon you are listening so because what happened to the guy who touched death in Numbers 19? There's a vessel of living water, running water. They take the vessel, they take the ashes, listen. They take the ashes which means the finished work of Jesus, all right? The fire has done its job. They put into living water.
What is the living water? The Holy Spirit. "For if the ashes," the writer of Hebrews says, "if the ashes of the red heifer, sprinkling the unclean purifies the flesh, how much more shall the blood of Christ who through the eternal spirit purged your conscience from dead works to serve the living God"? So here he is. He put the ashes into the water and takes like a very small plant, a hyssop, all right? He dip into it. And you are the unclean person who has touched death, and he sprinkle on you. You're clean. Are you listening?
Now, do you know, Jesus in the Upper Room said to his disciples, "I am the vine, you are the branches. Now you are clean through the Word that I've spoken unto you". Wow, just by listening to the Word, you are clean. Not by the blood, by the water. Do you know that every time you come to church on Sunday, you go off refreshed? You don't feel dusty anymore, amen? And during the week, you're listening to Pastor Prince's sermon. At least I'm confident that ash is inside. I'm confident that there's living water inside, all right? So I can speak for myself, can I? But there are many good, many others who are also, but the thing is, now don't listen to one who has no ashes. They come to you and say, "Your case, terrible. Quin, take him to the river again. You need to rebathe and rebathe, reforgiven, reforgiven, reforgiven". No, no, friend. This shows us the importance of hearing the Word of God. Are you listening?
You know something? I wish I have time to tell you about Leviticus 14, about the leper. The leper in the day of his cleansing, which never happened before Jesus came, because no leper in Israel was cleansed. In fact, in the Old Testament, only Naaman the Syrian was cleansed. No Jew was cleansed. The first time was Jesus touched the man who was full of leprosy. Jesus touched him and said, "Be clean," and Jesus says, "Go offer a sacrifice as Moses commanded". He was referring to Leviticus 14. So when a man went to offer the sacrifice to the priest, the priest says, "How in the world are you". And the guy says, "A man called Jesus cleansed my leprosy," as a testimony to this Jewish priest that the Messiah has come.
So Leviticus 14 was never fulfilled. But nonetheless, if you go to it, it says: "When the leper is cleansed," what's the gift to be offered? And Jesus told the man who was just cleansed, healed of leprosy, "Go offer the gift". What gift is it? It's two birds. Two birds. He brings the two birds, or the two birds are brought for him, it's a passive term, because he's poor, he's a leper. It's brought for him, and he comes to the priest. And what happened is this: the priest takes one bird, listen, one bird. Both birds represent our Lord Jesus Christ. Because he's so poor, he brings a bird. In those days, when you are rich, you bring a bullock; when you are middle income, you bring a lamb or a goat; when you're so poor, you can bring a bird which can be easily caught in Israel. They're a dime a dozen, all right? Or a handful of flour, because Jesus says, "I am the bread of life".
Anything that typified to the Father his Son, it is accepted. You see how good God is? Today, the truth reverse it. If you are poor, spiritually, you only have a small revelation of Jesus, bird size. If you are rich, you have a bullock size, okay? Bullock-sized revelation. May all of you have bullock-sized revelation, not bullock-sized lips, but bullock-sized revelation, amen. Okay, are y'all enjoying this, before I go on? So I'm bringing this to a close. So he brings the two birds, right, to the priest, and the priest takes one bird, listen. He kills that bird, the picture of the cross, Jesus Christ, all right? And the bird is dead, all right?
The blood is caught in a bowl, and he puts again cedar, hyssop, and scarlet, and then he brings that leper in front of him, and he takes the living bird. Say living bird. There's a picture of resurrection. There's death and resurrection. The living bird is not killed. This living bird is dipped into the blood of the dead bird. In our case, Jesus's work is one. Dip, and then now he's full of blood, all on his wings, and he will sprinkle the blood on the leper. And then the Bible says, Leviticus 14, when he sprinkles it seven times, he will, "pronounce the leper clean, and shall let the living bird loose in the open field," resurrection and ascension.
See, Jesus goes back to heaven after he rose from the dead. Because he has applied the blood to you. Are you listening? He pronounced him what? Clean. We've got to be careful. Our sermon must be, God is watching. God says, "What I have cleansed," he tells all preachers, "don't you dare call unclean". Our ministries pronounce people clean by the blood, okay? So there's the first clean, taher in Hebrew. But look at this, verse 8: "He who is to be cleansed shall wash his clothes, shave off his hair, wash himself in water," clothes speaks of your testimony. "Wash himself in water," this time, "that he may be clean". Wait a minute, I thought he was pronounced clean already? So the first pronounce clean is what? Salvation. Now for that, your habits and all that must be washed in water, okay? Then "that he may be clean".
Now, I'm going to show you something that I pray that you will get this, because you get this, it's got to do with sickness and disease. Can you try, by the grace of God? Father, give me the words. Because in the Hebrew there are a deeper study of the word taher, which is the word clean, both pronouncing clean, taher, that he may be clean, next verse. Is also taher. But even though it's the same word, in the Hebrew there is a stem of that word which is either qal, Q-A-L or P-L. Now, qal, if it's qal, it means cleansing, listen, the very first interpretation of qal is cleansing from physical disease. Cleansing from what? Physical disease.
Now, pronounce him clean, is not qal, it is P-L. That means what? Pronounced clean, ceremonially clean. But the next one, that he may be clean. Even though the same Hebrew word, but the stem is qal, which means what? Free from physical disease. There are two cleansing here. Are you listening, people? What does that mean, Pastor Prince? This is what's interesting. Every time you sit under the Word of God, your body gets healthier. But make sure it's the death and resurrection of Jesus. This guy was cleansed by the death, all right, and the resurrected Jesus applying his blood, amen. And just now we read about the ashes of the red heifer, it is applied when you touch death.
So, because of time, I cannot go into detail, but let me just tell you this. Jesus did both in one fell swoop, both kind of cleansing. When the leper came to him, Jesus went down the mountain. And the Father spoke to me some time ago, and God said to me, "Son, even though the cleansing of the leper was not chronologically the first miracle Jesus did, the first miracle was turn water into wine. However, in terms of Matthew, Mark, Luke, and John, the Holy Spirit deemed fit to put the first miracle of healing as the cleansing of the leper". And the Lord said to me, "Study this". And that's when I study it and I got all this. The Lord says, "Study it because you will find a revelation there for healing".
By the way, I just started something, it's only a starting, all right? So, the first one is pronouncement of cleanse, being clean in terms of ceremonially. That he may be clean, the second verse, refers to free from physical disease. Now, who wants that? Y'all don't want, it's okay, you know? In fact, this washing of the water might keep you young. Young means you got responsibilities. I was somewhere the other day and someone, a lady who was in a shop, I asked her for some product, you know? She looked at me, now it's in her interest to sell the product, isn't it? She says, "No, these are for older people, not for you". I said, "Praise God". So I said, "Okay, okay, I don't need that product". God bless her, she has great discernment.
Anyway, all right, go on, praise God. Stay under the Word, man. Say under the washing of the water of the Word, amen? It refreshes you, it cleans you up. I'm bringing this to a close. All right, Jesus did this in one fell swoop. The first miracle documented in Matthew, which is the first miracle of all the miracles, but it's not first miracle in terms of chronological order. That's what the Father said. But why did the miracle was mentioned first in the Gospel of Matthew? Jesus came down after he preached the Sermon on the Mount, he came down and a leper came to him, and says, "Lord".
I don't know how the leper made it, there's a multitude there. Nonetheless, he was there. And I got a whole sermon on this when I was at that location, I saw something that I never saw before. There were rocks all around. He must have hidden in one of those rocks. And Jesus did not go the way down where the multitude were. He went down where the rocks were. Because he went down where the multitudes were doesn't make sense. Based on the Bible, it says the crowds followed him. That means he went the other way, because of one leper. See the compassion of our Lord Jesus? So after he finished his Sermon on the Mount, he went down the other way, and the Bible says the leper came to him and says, "Lord, if you are willing, you can make me clean".
Now, he used the word what? He didn't say, "You can make me well". "You can make me clean". Jesus touched him. Jesus said, "I am willing". Jesus said what? "Be", not healed. In other cases, he would say, "Be healed. Be thou made whole," right? In this case, "Be clean". And immediately, his leprosy left. And the Father said to me, "Son, study this. It's this cleansing that gives healing". And that's when I studied this and God brought me to Numbers and Leviticus. And there's so much more, you know, but I don't have time. Just to suffice to say this, and for grace teachers, thank God for the finished work. Yes, what cleanses people is the constant preaching, constant sharing. Whether it is through the Bible you receive it or whether you read books, or you listen to messages, you must keep on listening.
Martin Luther said that, "I need to preach to myself every day the gospel because every day I forget". I said before, you listen to a sermon, 10 series, 10 weeks, a series on grace. The 11th week, somebody comes and preach a mixture, you can forget all 10. 'Cause the natural propensity of the human flesh is to gravitate towards law, okay? So, the thing is this, people. What is the water that Jesus washed them with? It is a reminder of his finished work, applied practically. So the water is... you know how you apply water? The water must contain ashes? You cannot just say, "Well, water is also the Ten Commandments". No, no, no, no, no. You know, you must be accurate. I showed you Scripture. I took pains to show you Numbers 19, all right? The application of the water is a reminder. And don't forget, right after he washes their feet, what does he do? He takes the towel, lention, linen cloth, which is "Righteousness is the girdle of his loins," and he dries their feet with.
Every sermon, every book you read, must leave you with a righteousness consciousness or else it's not the ministry of the New Testament. Makes you feel dirty, makes you feel lousy, makes you feel more under the dust, taking dust and ashes on your head, it's not the ministry of the New Testament. It is killing you. So church, let me just say this to you. If you're having problems, you cannot psych your way out of fear, but you can listen to your way out of fear. Get an iPod, whatever you need to get, and load it down with good sermons. But make sure that these sermons contain the ashes. Make sure that they end off by drying your feet. Wet feet walking around will contract even more defilement. Hmm?
It is the Holy Spirit applying the death of Christ, the reminder of it, that cleanses people, that cleanses the believer today. And that's why this is not 1 John 1:9. It cannot be, because 1 John 1:9 will remind you of your sins. This is a reminder your sins are put away. The work has been done. You cannot say, "Well Pastor Prince, I know all that already". No, you need to daily know because we forget. Everything in this world cries. There's no such thing as a free lunch. Everything in this world says, all right, your conscience will say, "You have done wrong, now expect this to happen. Expect that to happen".
You need the washing of the water. You need good messages to read or to listen to, or even find for yourself as you go into God's word. But the thing is this, God has given us helps, and it's the height of pride to say, "I just read the Bible". Someone I know recently say, "I just read the Bible". Well friend, what has it brought you? 'Cause it can actually be a pride. I read the Bible, but listen, God has given us helps, ministers, teachers, pastors. Use both. But make sure the minister is a minister of the new covenant. Amen?
And for all the grace teachers that say there's no more cleansing, let me just tell you this, there is. Let me show you this. How do you explain this? 2 Corinthians 7 and I'll close with this. Verse 1, "Therefore, having these promises, beloved, let us cleanse ourselves". Let us what? Cleanse ourselves, "From all filthiness of the flesh and spirit, perfecting holiness in the fear of God". There is a cleansing. When your body and your spirit get defiled, you feel dirty. You're still righteous, all right? But you say, "Pastor, where's the word here"? Read, "Therefore, having these," loss or promises? Promises. It is through the Word of God. His greatest promise is, "Your sins I remember no more". Keep on reminding yourself of that and guess what? The defilements fall away.
I asked the Lord for a good illustration for this a number of years ago and he gave me this. I'll close with this. Look up here. And this is what every ministry of the New Testament ought to be. This is how, when you contract defilement, you are still intrinsically, listen, you are in God's eyes, in Christ, you are still glorious, but you fell among dirt. And this is how God cleanses you. You see the little gold medallion? That's like people who are true believers. And this is what the Lord does. He picks you up. You are still valuable. Would you pick this up if you see it? Of course. It's still valuable. You would pick it up.
You see, it's still righteous. It is still covered with Christ's glory. And then you wash with the water of the word. This is what every preaching ministry ought to be, every book, every blogging. Every time we interact with each other, this is what we should do to one another. Now you see, this is cleansing ourselves through his promises, his word, from all filthiness of the flesh and the spirit. This filthiness fix themselves on us, but they are not us. They don't become us. There are those who would teach, you see, you can sin and become dirty again, all right? In a sense, this is dirty first. At first you saw that, but it's not dirty inwardly. You can never be dirty inwardly again. You have been made righteous, but it can contract defilement. It's your feet washing. Are you listening? Amen.
Now you are clean. Now you are clean through the Word that's been spoken to you. And the Lord said, and I'll close with this, John 13:12, "When He had washed their feet, taken His garments, and sat down, He said, 'Do you know what I've done to you?'" Go on. "You call Me Teacher and Lord, and you say well, for so I am. If I then, your Lord and Teacher, have washed your feet, you also ought to wash one another's feet. For I have given you an example, that you should do as I've done to you". Look up here. Some people don't read their Bibles, you all know that, but they talk to you. Some people, our young people, some of them, they don't spend time in the word or listening to Pastor Prince's messages, but father, mother, they listen to you. Put ashes in your words and let's do this to one another. When we see a brother that's contracted, we don't say, "How dirty your feet is. You need to be born again. You need to be reforgiven". No, we humble ourselves and we wash them.
Every time you talk to someone, you have this opportunity to do what Jesus did. This is loving one another, amen? I'm not saying that you gotta, you know, every day you gotta spend 1 hour in the Bible. It's ideal you can spend some time in this book, but Jesus does not limit himself, his Word, just to the Bible. He will get his Word through his servants. A phone call, a text. Someone comes to your mind, text them. "No weapon formed against you will prosper". That person might be going through some things. They know this verse before. They have heard it before, but what timely word when the Holy Spirit brings to your mind the living water.
Apply the ashes. Because of what Jesus has done, you will not be punished. Or you can say, "This sickness is not from God. It's from the devil". Or you can say, "This is a lying symptom". Amen. Jesus has made you well. Amen. Friend, ultimately all ministry comes from him, amen? Expect that to happen. Expect that to happen. And John saw him in the book of Revelation. He was now clad with a golden girdle. Although glorified, still a servant. And he wants to wash your feet, and today he has done it, amen? Have you been blessed? Praise the Lord. Give him praise, church. Hallelujah. Amen, amen, amen, amen. Praise the name of Jesus.
Every head bowed, every eye closed all across this place and everywhere that's watching this right now. Friend, if you are here or you're watching this broadcast and you've never encountered this wonderful love that you heard about just now. He loved you to the end. He loved you to the uttermost extent. Gave his life with arms stretched wide as if saying, "This is how much I love you". Friend, the soul that sins must die. That's the law of the universe. That's the law of heaven. The soul that sins must die. But God so loved the world, God so loved you, God sent his Son, that whoever believes in Christ will not perish, but have everlasting life.
And friend, on that cross, our Lord Jesus bore your sins and mine, suffered in our place, and he suffered such agony like no man ever suffered, because not only he suffered outwardly, but also inwardly, which is the worst suffering, as he bore the sins of all the world. This thrice-holy man, who is God in human flesh, had the weight of all the world's sins upon him. And he bore all the penalties, including sickness and disease, all the judgment, all the curse, and he endured it and shouted finally, "Finished"! As every stroke of the broken law, every stroke of punishment and the curse slowly exhausted itself until it's got no more claim on our substitute, and therefore no more claim on you. You have been forgiven righteously. You have been forgiven on judicial ground. Someone died in your place, and because that someone is eternal, you have eternal forgiveness.
And friend, if you have not received this, this is your moment, this is your time to receive what he has done for you. Jesus cried at the end, "Finished"! It's now all ashes. and the devil wants to bring these ashes in front of you and threaten you with it. Just say, "Ashes, ashes, ashes". Jesus finished it. And he rose from the dead. God raised him from the dead as a receipt to all his people that your sins have been put away. The same body that carried our sins rose without them. It's a declaration. His resurrection is a declaration that our sins have been effectually put away. Friend, if that is you wherever you are right now, pray this prayer with me. Say from your heart:
Heavenly Father, you love the world, therefore you love me. And though a sinner, you loved me and you sent your Son while I was still a sinner to die for me, for all my sins on that tree. And Jesus finished it all on my behalf, and he rose from the dead without my sins. Hallelujah. I'm in Christ risen, forevermore. Jesus Christ is my Lord and my Savior. Thank you, Father, in Jesus' name. And all the people said amen. Praise the Lord.
Let's all stand to our feet. Thank you, Lord Jesus. Lift your hands all across this place. I really believe that after the washing of water of the Word, just like in the Old Testament, before the priest can pronounce the blessings, there must be a sacrifice. After the sacrifice, then the song of the Lord began and the priest would bless the people. Because we have a greater sacrifice, we have better blood, we have a more excellent name, therefore guess what? Your blessings are greater than all the Jews ever had in the Old Testament. Amen? Lift up your hands all across this place and everywhere that's watching this.
This coming week, the Lord bless you with the blessings of Father Abraham and the blessings of Deuteronomy 28. Blessed coming in, blessed going out, blessed in all that you set your hand unto. Even if your enemies come against you one way, they flee before you seven ways. The Lord will make you the head and not the tail. You come to a place you will lend and not borrow. The Lord bless the fruit of your body. Your children are blessed. The Lord bless your children in every area of their lives. The Lord bless them in their studies. The Lord keep you and your families throughout this week from danger, harm, accident, from disease, from the powers of darkness. The Lord preserve you and your loved ones from all evil. The Lord make his face shine on you. Be gracious to you and your loved ones throughout this week. And the Lord lift up his countenance and grant you shalom well being, health, and peace. In the name of our Lord Jesus Christ, amen, amen, amen.