151. At this point something will now be said on how the internal man is reformed and how the external man is reformed -by means of it. The internal man is not reformed merely by knowing, understanding and being wise, and consequently merely by thinking; but by willing what knowledge, understanding and wisdom teach. When a man knows, understands and has wisdom to see that there is a heaven and a hell, and that all evil is from hell and all good is from heaven; and if he then does not will evil because it is from hell, but wills good because it is from heaven, he is in the first stage of reformation, and is at the threshold out of hell into heaven. When he progresses further, and wills to desist from evils he is in the second stage of reformation, and is now outside hell but not yet in heaven, which he sees above him. A man must have such an internal in order that he may be reformed; but he is not reformed unless the external as well as the internal is reformed. The external is reformed by means of the internal when the external desists from the evils which the internal does not will because they are infernal, and still more when the external for this reason shuns them and fights against them. Thus willing is the part of the internal and doing of the external. For unless a man does that which he wills there is within him the failure to will which eventually becomes want of will.
 From these few considerations it can be seen how the external man is reformed by means of the internal. This also is what is meant by the Lord's words to Peter:
Jesus said: If I wash thee not, thou hast no part with me.
[Simon] Peter saith unto Him: Lord, not my feet only, but also my hands and my head.
Jesus saith to him: He that is washed needeth not save to wash his feet, but is clean every whit. John xiii. 8, 9, 10.
By washing is meant spiritual washing, which is purification from evils; by washing the head and hands is meant purifying the internal man; and by washing the feet is meant purifying the external man. That the external man must be purified when the internal has been purified is meant by this, "He that is washed, needeth not save to wash his feet." That all purification from evils is from the Lord is meant by this, "If I wash thee not, thou hast no part with me." It has been shown in many places in the ARCANA CAELESTIA that washing among the Jews represented purification from evils, and that this is signified in the Word by washing; and that by washing the feet is signified the purification of the natural or external man.