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The Cleansing of Jesus

The Cleansing of Jesus
Words of Faith 12-26-16
Dr. Jeffrey D. Hoy © 2016
Faith Fellowship Church - Melbourne, FL
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John 11
[54] Therefore Jesus no longer moved about publicly among the Jews. Instead he withdrew to a region near the desert, to a village called Ephraim, where he stayed with his disciples.
[55] When it was almost time for the Jewish Passover, many went up from the country to Jerusalem for their ceremonial cleansing before the Passover. [56] They kept looking for Jesus, and as they stood in the temple area they asked one another, "What do you think? Isn't he coming to the Feast at all?" [57] But the chief priests and Pharisees had given orders that if anyone found out where Jesus was, he should report it so that they might arrest him.

The risk for Jesus was growing considerably by the hour. The power of Jesus to raise the dead threatened the religious authorities enormously and they plotted a way to do away with Him.
Because of the plot against Him Jesus’ public ministry was effectively over. He did not move about preaching in public places or healing the sick. He remained in a village called Ephraim to the north of Jerusalem and northeast of Bethel. The town was on the edge of the Judean desert providing a place to flee if necessary.
As the Passover approached huge numbers of people began making their way to Jerusalem for ceremonial cleansing. This cleansing was required in order to participate in the Passover and as many as a million people would be there. Masses of people would gather on steps of the Temple where huge bowls of water sat for this purpose. Here, they would go through the process of ritual cleansing.
We might envision these early arrivals as similar to the mass of travelers who arrive several hours early at the airport these days to go through the security checkpoint. There was no way around this ritual. It was required. The religious authorities closely watched the ceremonial cleansings in the same way police might watch a security checkpoint. But Jesus never showed up. They watched and waited.
Perhaps there is a reason that Jesus never showed up at the cleansing area of the Temple. Surely Jesus had participated in the cleansing rituals all His earthly life. He was an observant Jew even though He was never unclean in any way. He had observed the way and custom of Jewish men.
But now the time was near when He would no longer go through any ritual of cleansing. Instead, Jesus would be the source of cleansing. He would be the cleansing. He had set His face toward Jerusalem for this very specific reason. The authorities would not “catch” Jesus at the cleansing pools or anywhere else, not until the time set by the Father.
Isn’t it wonderful? You and I do not need to go to cleansing pools either. We do not need elaborate rituals to continually become clean. Why is that? Because Jesus has done that for us. We stand in His righteousness. We are cleansed once and for all by His sacrificial death as we trust Him by faith. Walk in that truth today.

Lord, thank You for forgiving my sin. Thank you for cleansing me and covering my sin. I choose to walk by faith today clothed in Your righteousness. In Jesus’ name.

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© Jeffrey D. Hoy 2002, 2016
Dr. Jeffrey D. Hoy - Faith Fellowship Church (EFCA)
2820 Business Center Blvd.
Melbourne, Florida 32940 (321)-259-7200
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The Words of Faith devotion is published five days a week by E-mail excluding Federal holidays. Please feel free to forward this devotion to a friend who might be blessed by this devotion. Unless otherwise noted, all Scripture is quoted from the New International Version (R) of The Holy Bible. Copyright (c) 1973, 1978, 1984 by International Bible Society. Used by permission of Zondervan Publishing House. All rights reserved. Words of Faith (c) 1997, 2010 Jeffrey D. Hoy. All rights reserved. Permission is granted to forward this copyrighted material or use portions of it with appropriate notation of the source for non-profit purposes.