Wednesday, July 9, 2014

Becoming White as Snow ................... Parables 141

Snow is a marvelous cover-up. November’s drab dresses up in sparkling white. Muddy vacant lots, once eyesores, are beautifully blanketed. Naked black branches are draped in layers of shimmering crystal, outlined against a pearl grey sky.

While not so inspiring, our backyard grass needed one more cut, one more rake, but the snow hid it all; the jobs that didn’t get finished are covered; our lawn looks just as good as the neighbors who were more ambitious.

We have one tree that stubbornly refuses to yield all her leaves to winter. But this morning, the cold wind won a round. The snow was speckled with drab, round gold pieces - spots on an otherwise unblemished blanket. They looked like acne on a teen’s face, or mud splattered on a snow white Cadillac.

Later I thought of Christ who promises to wash hearts whiter than snow. (Isaiah 1:18). We need it, you know. The Bible says Jesus is our snow-white standard, but there is not one life who can match His unblemished purity. How short we fall. Yet the New Testament says we are made spotless by faith in Him. His blood is applied as a cleansing agent for those who believe, powerful to wash away our sin and remove it”as far as the east is from the west.” (Psalm 103:12).

After that is done, Scripture says He is able to keep us blameless before God and present us faultless on that day when He comes to receive all who believe in Him (1 Corinthians 1:8, Jude 24).

But, James 1:27 warns Christians to keep themselves unspotted from the world. In fact, I found references warning against a “spotted” and “blemished” condition in nearly every book of the Bible. We are not to spatter our new life in Christ with blotches of sin. Yet when it happens, we can be made white again.

The good news is, “If we walk in the light as He is in the light, the blood of Jesus Christ keeps on cleansing us from all sin, and if we confess our sins, He is faithful and just to forgive us our sins, and to cleanse us from all unrighteousness” (I John 1:7,9). Our part is to admit our sins, confessing them to Him, and come with a heart that is willing to forsake them. He will do the rest.

The snow covered everything. Along came the wind that shook the tree, blotching that pristine perfection with leaves. The snow will return, likely in the night, The next time I look those leaves will be hidden. The mystery of Jesus’ blood goes one step further. Yes, He covers sin, but somehow He cleanses and washes it away, changing and remaking our lives pure and clean.

Such a glorious truth. No need to try and erase that which defiles, even if we could. Instead, we have His saving power to forgive and restore us when we fail. We can take any transgression to Him and leave it there, trusting His eternal power to save us from it completely, just as He promised He would do.

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