I was standing at my bathroom sink one day washing my hands and the Holy Spirit spoke to me saying,
“If you wash your hands frequently to rid yourself of germs and bacteria to keep from being physically ill, then why do you consider washing your robes less trivial?”
This was a stunning revelation to me. I knew it was the Holy Spirit because I have never in my life referred to seeking repentance from the Lord as washing robes—but that is what I learned after that when I looked up the phrase “washing robes.” In the Bible the phrase can be found in the verse Revelation 22:14. You see, I was not accustom to saying the phrase “washing robes,” but I admit I had heard of it used in the Bible before so I knew to look it up in the Bible and this is what I found:
Revelation 22:14: Blessed are they that do his commandments, that they may have right to the tree of life, and may enter in through the gates into the city. (Other versions say, “Blessed are those who wash their robes.”)
If I expand on the lesson that I received from the Holy Spirit it would be that when Revelation 22:14 states blessed are those who wash their robes—this is clearly not a future tense statement to someday wash robes in the future. It is not a past tense statement saying, “For one time only, blessed are those who have washed their robes.” Plainly, the tense is present tense wash their robes and the Holy Spirit was making known to me that washing robes or repentance should be a frequent occurrence for the Christian. In fact, the frequency that He prescribed to me was as in washing hands to prevent disease, which we perform often.
So why would the act of “washing our robes” so frequently be needed? I believe that frequent repentance is necessary to enjoy a close communion with God, because God is so very holy and we are so very sinful. We need to repent regularly to stay close to God. Every time we approach God in prayer, we should first seek repentance through the precious blood of Christ. If we want to have our petitions heard and to partake in a close relationship with a holy God—then we need to be regularly repentant. This was the significant instruction I received from the Holy Spirit.
Christ has stepped in and provided His blood as a sufficient sacrifice to atone for our sins and to bridge the impossible gap between all of us evil men to a pure and Holy God. Nevertheless, as long as we are in these bodies and cursed by our sinful nature in this life then we must seek forgiveness and repentance and it is only with the blood of Christ given to us that we can be forgiven and able to approach God. God the Father then sees us through the covering of His Son Christ’s blood. No one can enter to the Father in Heaven without first repenting and applying the blood of Christ to themselves and acknowledging Christ crucified.
As the Apostle Paul, so often stressed in his New Testament writings everything revolves around Christ crucified. The Bible points to Christ from beginning to end and without Christ crucified we are doomed. The act of God becoming man through His one and only son Jesus and dying for us was the only pure and perfect sacrifice to atone for our sins—past, present, future.
I consider this message to me from the Holy Spirit as a major gift. This gift was one of the reasons that I decided to write this book—so I could share the insight given to me with others. Through our admission of sin and acceptance of the blood of Christ, as the only means to our forgiveness, we can then come boldly to the throne of God and enjoy His fellowship. There is nothing we can do to merit or earn God’s forgiveness—nothing. God’s forgiveness given to us is an act of mercy—unmerited forgiveness. So then how can we successfully repent?
The way we repent successfully to God is to do it from a sincere, humble, broken heart, and acknowledging that only Christ has what we need for forgiveness. Repent means “to turn.” When we turn by repenting, we should not turn back to our own evil ways—we should turn straight to Jesus for the only hope we have to enable us to turn from our sins and evil ways. We do not have what it takes to combat sin on our own. Jesus says that apart from Him we are nothing.
Our repentance should not be just another ritualistic act of works to impress God but rather an act of true remorse over our sinful condition and a humble admission that we desperately need Christ to turn away from evil. We need to wash our robes frequently to stay in close communion with a Holy God.
Psalms 24:3-4: Who shall ascend into the hill of the LORD? Or who shall stand in his holy place? He that hath clean hands, and a pure heart; who hath not lifted up his soul unto vanity, nor sworn deceitfully.
James 4:7-10: Submit yourselves therefore to God. Resist the devil, and he will flee from you. Draw nigh to God, and he will draw nigh to you. Cleanse your hands, ye sinners; and purify your hearts, ye double minded. Be afflicted, and mourn, and weep: let your laughter be turned to mourning, and your joy to heaviness. Humble yourselves in the sight of the Lord, and he shall lift you up.
Hebrews 10:22: Let us draw near with a true heart in full assurance of faith, having our hearts sprinkled from an evil conscience, and our bodies washed with pure water.
Isaiah 1:16: Wash you, make you clean; put away the evil of your doings from before mine eyes; cease to do evil;