Saturday, April 5, 2008

Cleansing Part I

Psa 119:9 Wherewithal shall a young man cleanse his way? by taking heed thereto according to thy word.
As a young man myself, this verse has become one of my mainstays in life. I guess all humans stay in an almost constant state of being in need of cleansing, but a young man is open to so many venues of temptation and sin. Who is more likely to be arrogant and full of themselves than a young man? What stage of life does lust occur most often than in the youth? Who has more choices to make concerning the direction of their future than a young man? His occupation, his education, his marriage, where he will settle down, these are all questions that only aid in clouding his mind further. I often stop and wonder what does a young man do that does not make it a habit to read the bible daily? Where does he go to get the answers so desperately needed during this time of life? But, as the verse so clearly states it is not only answers the bible provides but a cleansing. When a man has disobeyed the laws laid out in the word of God, it is only the word of God that can cleanse him from the filth he has gotten himself into. Paul says that Christ uses this same method in the sanctifying and cleansing of His church, Eph. 5:25-27 says “Husbands, love your wives, even as Christ also loved the church, and gave himself for it; That he might sanctify and cleanse it with the washing of water by the word, That he might present it to himself a glorious church, not having spot, or wrinkle, or any such thing; but that it should be holy and without blemish.” (Emphasis mine).
Clearly then, the bible does possess spiritual cleansing properties not found in any other thing here on this earth. Why is it then that we try to cleanse ourselves in so many other ways? We somehow think that doing good deeds will cleanse us, as if the good would erase the bad. Or perhaps we are more inclined to think that cleansing occurs by “finding our inner self” and that by taking long periods of time out of the day to sit and clear our minds of all the other things that has clouded them, we can become clean. God on the other hand has designated a much better method of cleansing our minds and spirits, a continual drenching by the scriptures. I once heard a man say that someone had accused him of being brainwashed to which he replied he was glad to be brainwashed by the bible, in fact it was the only way he would want his dirty mind to be washed. We ought to all take up this attitude, that we would give over minds to the truth of scripture. Instead we try to convince ourselves and others that we would read the bible more, if only we had more time. The truth of the matter is we have time for what we make time for. We have time in spades to work, we have plenty of time to take meals thrice daily, we have time to watch the news and ball games, we have time for everything else. How pitiful our excuses sound when laid against reality, how apathetic our lives have become if we can convince ourselves that our time would be better spent working out at the gym than reading the letter God has preserved for 4,000+ years, just for us. I mean not to tirade against watching television or any other such exercise, I only mean to point out what god's we have made unto ourselves. I recently conducted an informal poll, asking the participants how a man could become right in God's eyes. You would be amazed how many people either didn't know, or didn't know “how to explain it”, and we live in the “bible belt”. Unfortunately, our bibles are fast being replaced by TV Guides and newspapers. Why don't we make a resolution to start reading more of the scripture than we currently do, at least a few minutes a day? I attempt to read it for an hour a day and I still don't get the kind of washing this young man daily needs.

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