It feels good to be clean especially when we feel sullied and filthy. Our son Jordan is only a few months old and absolutely hates having a dirty diaper. He starts screaming the moment he’s soiled himself and then stops the moment he’s been changed, it’s like a little switch gets flipped.
Though we can’t see it or smell it, we feel a similar way when our souls get polluted. We end up sitting uncomfortably in our sin, guilt, and shame, needing to be changed and anxious to feel clean.
Few Sundays ago I had someone from Grace Point come up to me after the service and say, “Pastor, it’s been happening every sermon for the past few weeks, I feel like I’m being washed clean.” This was so encouraging, and it reminded me of Ephesians 5:25-26 which says, Husbands, love your wives, as Christ loved the church and gave himself up for her, that he might sanctify her, having cleansed her by the washing of water with the word.
Christ loves His bride and is deeply committed to making her, and keeping her, clean. He uses His written Word to continually wash His church and cleanse our souls.
The Word purifies our thoughts, it scrubs our motives, cleanses our consciences, and washes away our hurts as we absorb it into us and conform our lives to its truths.
At Grace Point we have been bathing in the book of Mark and lately the topics have been challenging. Jesus’ teaching on sin, hell, divorce, remarriage, death and suffering, have been tough, like washing with a rough exfoliant, but our souls are coming out cleaner for having been scoured and polished.
The Word of God does not return void, it accomplishes what God desires and achieves the purpose for which it was sent. The Holy Spirit is rinsing away our guilt and shame through the ministry of the Word. Sins are being flushed out and wounds sanitized. As people are changed you can smell the aroma of Christ on them. And just like Jordan, they can’t help letting people know how good it feels to be clean.