clean: free from contamination, free from guilt, separated from anything that makes one unclean
Before the priests could enter the Holy Place and the Holy of Holies, they had to wash their hands and feet in the outer court. They had to appear before God clean.
I recently asked the Lord to make me clean and the reason why I asked Him to do this is because sometimes we engage in things that corrupts us (Exodus 32:7). You may immediately think I’m talking about sexual sins, but sometimes it is our conversations that corrupts us. Let no corrupt communication proceed out of your mouth, but that which is good to the use of edifying, that it may minister grace to the hearers (Ephesians 4:29).
Then, I began reading about lepers in the bible. Leprosy is spread by direct contact and the reason why lepers were in the condition they were in was because of what or who they touched. But sometimes, leprosy was a result of indirect contact (no physical touch). For example, Miriam became leprous when she ‘touched’ God’s servant, Moses, with her mouth by speaking against him.
The Pharisees and scribes thought Jesus and his disciples were unclean because they didn’t practice the tradition of the elders, which was washing their hands before eating bread. In the tabernacle, you had to first wash yourself at the laver before you approached the table of showbread and according to Leviticus 24:9 and Matthew 12:4, it was lawful for priests to eat the shewbread. The Pharisees and scribes thought they were in the Holy Place and Holy of Holies because of what they knew, but they were still in the outer court because of Who they didn’t know and because of what was in their hearts. Jesus then explained to them that it wasn’t what was on the outside, but what was on the inside – in a man’s heart, that made him unclean.
For from within, out of the heart of men, proceed evil thoughts, adulteries, fornications, murders, thefts, covetousness, wickedness, deceit, lasciviousness, an evil eye, blasphemy, pride, foolishness. All these evil things come from within and defiles (make unclean) the man (Mark 7:21-23).
God doesn’t want us to be people that appear righteous to others outwardly, but full of hypocrisy and sin inwardly (Matthew 23:28). For so long, we’ve been focused on what it looks like or what we look like – the outward appearance, but let God clean you in the inside first. If you only clean the outside of the cup, then it’s not really clean – and no one wants to drink from a dirty cup.
Not only did Jesus loved us, but he washed us from our sins in His own blood and He made us priests to God (Revelation 1:5-6).
That he might present it (the church) to himself a glorious church, not having spot or wrinkle, or any such thing, but that it should be holy and without blemish (Ephesians 5:27).
I believe we all want to be healed from something, but the question is: Do you want to be clean? Do you want to stop doing the things that made you sick, depressed, brokenhearted and unclean to begin with? God doesn’t want us to be like the pig, who after it is washed, returns to the mud again (2 Peter 2:22).
I have asked the Lord to clean me, but I am also asking for His help to stay clean.
And, behold, there came a leper and worshipped him, saying, Lord, if you will, you can make clean (Matthew 8:2).
Create in me a clean heart, O God, and renew a right spirit within me (Psalm 51:10).
How can a young person stay pure? By obeying your word (Psalm 119:9, NLT).
Wherefore come out from among them, and be separate, says the Lord, and touch not the unclean thing and I will receive you (2 Corinthians 6:17).