“If I Do Not Wash You, You Have No Share With Me”: Culture, Conversation, Confusion, and Clarity

A sermon preached by Dr. Jack Whytock at the September 5, 2021 morning service of the United Reformed Church of Prince Edward Island, Canada.

The sermon is based on the NT reading from John 13:1-17 (Jesus washes the disciples’ feet).

The gospel reading begins at the 25:53 mark. The sermon begins at the 32:10 mark.

“Peter, you are about to betray me, yet you are clean now”. Jesus declared Peter clean, yet knew that Peter would betray him and deny him three times. “You are going to come to me all over again. And I will forgive and pardon you and cleanse those particular feet of yours of their particular sins and you will find fellowship with me restored again.”

We are all sinners in need of the cleansing blood of Jesus Christ. How many times can a person be born again? Once. A person is justified, declared righteous by God once.

If you are a Christian you have abiding sin, you still sin after you have been justified in Christ. You participate in the liturgy’s prayer of confession. You acknowledge that your feet are dirty. You say, “I have been a rebel too”. Yet you have been declared justified.

Jesus’ work on the cross will never need to be repeated; it is once for all. And once justified, we do not need to seek again or look for another.