Wednesday, January 16, 2013

In Christ - I am washed clean from my sins

I am washed clean from my sins...

Isaiah 1:18 "Come now, let us reason together," says the LORD. "Though your sins are like scarlet, they shall be as white as snow; though they are red as crimson, they shall be like wool."

Ezekiel 36:25 I will sprinkle clean water on you, and you will be clean; I will cleanse you from all your impurities and from all your idols. 

Joni and Friends Daily Devotions – February 16, 2009

Because I cannot reach for a Bible and flip open the pages with my hands, I make it a point to memorize scripture. It's the only way I can have the Word of God at my fingertips! For me, memorizing portions of the Bible is very practical. I use the King James Version of the Bible when I commit God's Word to memory. The words are uncommon - a little like poetry - and my mind seems to retain it easier.

“When I was memorizing Psalm 51, I stopped short at the second verse. It says, ‘Wash me throughly from mine iniquity.’ At first I thought it was a printing error, but after a little research, I learned it was the Elizabethan-English-way of saying ‘through and through.’ You could paraphrase it, ‘Wash me through and through from my iniquity.’ It's not many times I prefer English from the 16th century, but this time I did. I don't want God to merely scrub me good on the outside - it's not a matter of cleansing me from my sin - but washing me clean, clear through.

“The word ‘throughly’ doesn't exist anymore. When I wrote it on my computer, my automatic spell check kept trying to change it to thoroughly. But I'm with Shakespeare, Queen Elizabeth, and King James on this one. I don't want God to do a surface job on my character; I want Him to get rid of every vestige of deep-down hidden sins.

* * * * * * * *

“First Thessalonians 5:23-24 says (in modern English), "May God Himself, the God of peace, sanctify you through and through. May your whole spirit, soul and body be kept blameless at the coming of our Lord Jesus Christ." From what hidden or secret sins can you ask God to wash you through and through today?

“Lord, I confess______________________. Thank you for forgiving me and completely cleansing me from all unrighteousness. Safeguard my heart and mind and keep me pure.”

When I moved into my “new” (to me) house last year I had to make a decision about the carpet that came with it  – did I keep it and have it professionally cleaned – or did I need to replace it and start fresh.  I hadn’t realized how dirty the carpet was when I bought the house because the lady who lived there still had all of her furniture in the house and the areas that were badly stained where somewhat covered by coffee tables, end tables and floor runners.  Once she was completely moved out I could clearly see what had been hidden – the carpets were REALLY dirty.  I gave it some thought and made the decision to have the carpet replaced.  Since then I’ve learned that old, stained carpet does not clean up well –surface dirt may come up with a professional cleaning – but underneath the carpet is the padding, and dirt/grime embedded there isn’t going to come out.  Eventually – over time - the stains will return.   Carpets can’t be “throughly” cleaned – just like our heart, mind, and spirit can’t be “throughly” cleaned by just doing surface work.   It’s important to note WHO is doing the “through and through” cleaning – GOD.  We can try – but we’ll never be able to do a “through and through” cleansing – only Jesus can do that for us.  That requires an attitude of humility – we see our inability to be “throughly” cleaned – and we allow the Lord to do that inner work of cleansing that is necessary.  It’s only when we give up our own efforts and allow Him to do what He does best that we can be truly cleansed.

Once we’ve been cleansed we can – and should – make every effort not to pollute our heart/mind/soul again by allowing idols and evil any room in our life.  That’s a day-by-day – sometimes moment-by-moment exercise in hearing the Holy Spirit and allowing Him to show us things that the enemy uses to pollute our inner man.  It might be that you can’t watch certain TV programs or go to some movies – it could be that you will need to cut back on shopping – or stop buying magazines that cause you to stumble.  Listen for His direction – and respond!  If you feel yourself being stained and polluted by the world, you can always go back and ask Jesus to wash you again – to cleanse you – to make you whiter than snow – and He will!  Sharon

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