Hebrews 9:14 – How much more, then, will the blood of Christ, who through the eternal Spirit offered himself unblemished to God, cleanse our consciences from acts that lead to death, so that we may serve the living God! (NIV)
I am a short person, a mere five feet from head to heel. Consequently, many things in life challenge me, such as cleaning the tops of refrigerators, cabinets, and ceiling fans. If it is out of sight, it is also out of mind. Since I literally do not see dirt up there, periodically I must remind myself to pull out my step-ladder in order to clean places that would normally be unreachable, such as ceiling lights, tops of book shelves, and shower rods.
Similarly, I do not see the dirt that soils my soul, such as a quick temper, gossip, or procrastination. At my age, life-long failings feel natural and normal, but when I read my Bible, I find that God doesn't accept such behaviours. In fact, God's Word calls them "trespasses" and "sins".
This presents a dilemma. How can a soul be cleansed of such things? Today's passage from Hebrews gives us the answer. The blood of Christ cleanses the dirt inside ourselves, in our souls, when we accept Jesus as our Saviour. The Holy Spirit gives us the ability to live a Christ-like life in order to keep our souls clean — not that we succeed all the time. We often fail, which sends us to our knees in prayer.
- 1. We tell our Lord how and when we failed. We confess our sins in detail and ask for forgiveness in Jesus' name.
2. We ask for strength through the Holy Spirit to live a better life.
3. We read our Bible daily to let God's Word and way of living soak into our hearts and minds.
4. We seek the company of other Christians through weekly worship services and Bible studies. As we continuously associate with other Christians, living according to biblical principles becomes easier.
Through this process, we are once again cleansed and strengthened so that we can do our best to serve the living God through serving others.
Prayer: Lord God, we ask forgiveness for the times when we have failed. Fill us with Your Holy Spirit so that we may live according to Your Word and be of service to You by serving others, for we pray in Jesus' name. Amen.