When I was in Bible School, there came a French missionary to speak to us. She was perhaps one of the best, most fruitful and effective missionaries I have ever met. After speaking to us of God’s dealings with her, and His work in the ministry to which He had called her, the question was asked: What is the one thing that you DO to walk with Him? Her answer was very brief, but immediate: “I endeavor to keep myself always CLEAN before Him.”
When Moses went to the backside of the desert to the “mountain of God, Horeb,” the Lord told him to take the sandals off of his feet, for the ground upon which he stood was holy. When Joshua was before Jericho, and leading the people of Israel into the promised land, the Lord revealed Himself to him, and told him the same thing…”Loose thy shoe from off thy foot: for the place whereon thou standest is holy.” (Josh. 5:15) What are we to learn from these two events, separate, and yet, the same? God is holy in the entirety of His person, and that holiness never changes. He is the same forever, and in His dealings with us, it will be with the consideration, and conviction of His holiness. He must be seen, and treated as such. He does NOT accommodate man; man must accomodate God.
We live in a very unclean world. It has been made even more unclean, and difficult to live in because of the availability of “unclean things.” It is noteworthy that when Paul speaks of being risen with Christ, and how that we are to set our minds, and affections on things above, that he immediately brings us back down to earth by saying, “Mortify (put to death) your members which are upon the earth; fornication, uncleanness, inordinate affection…” (Col. 3:5) Right “out of the gate” he speaks of uncleanness of mind and heart. God, because He IS holy will give no quarter to the uncleanness of our age. So that, if we are to walk with Him, and believe Him for the fullness of the Holy Spirit, we must live “clean” before Him, avoiding that which contributes to being affected by the uncleanness of our our age.
When Moses was returning with his wife and son, to Egypt, where God was sending him to bring the people of Israel forth, the Lord sought to take the life of Moses’ son. For some reason, Moses had not circumcised the child according to the mandate, and covenant, that God had given to Abraham. (Gen.17:9-14) All was averted by the obedience of Moses’ wife. The point here is that God does NOT accommodate our sin, or uncleanness, as He did not accomodate the uncircumcision of Moses’ son. The calling and the equipping of Moses did not exclude him from abiding by God’s ways, His holiness, and neither do they with regard to us.
So, the response of the missionary becomes very important to consider. The “blood of Jesus His Son cleanses us from all sin.” (1 Jn. 1:7) What a wonderful realty that we can be cleansed at any moment, of any day, if we confess our sin, and appropriate that cleansing. What a wonderful reality it is also that the Holy Spirit is given to us to “lead us not into temptation.” He is able to guide and keep us, and if we come into contact with uncleanness, to not allow it to cling to us, even if, by proximity, it should “crouch at the door.” Christ is a very present Savior, who imparts to us His cleanness!! Indeed, He IS our cleanness.
Lord Jesus, keep us clean, and rejoicing, as we go forth to serve Thee. And though we are in this unclean world, enable us to live above it, and to give no ground to it. Fill us with Thy Spirit, and keep us filled. Then we shall BE holy as Thou art holy. Amen.