Traditionally the Jews have always been a very meticulous and scrupulous people. They have always been very conscientious about their Law, especially as it relates to cleanliness. So, for example, the Old Testament said that you had to clean the dishes you ate from, but the Rabbis said that you had to clean wooden dishes more than glass dishes and temple dishes more than both. Then they said that you had to wash your hands once before eating to get rid of defilement and a second time to get rid of the water that touched the defilement. In other words, you had to wash the water that washed your hands. It was a little bit crazy.
The first time you washed, you had to let the water run over your wrist, and the second time you had to immerse all the way but the water itself could only be a small amount, half an eggshell's worth. Afterwards, the hand had to be lifted up to ensure that the water evaporated and went away. The rabbis had arguments about whether you had to do it once before and after a meal or only once before. Then they had arguments about whether you had to wash your hands between the courses or not, and they argued about whether you had to immerse in a bowl, a sink, or another container. All of which makes Paul’s comments in Titus 1:15 very interesting. There he writes:
To the pure, all things are pure; but to those who are defiled and unbelieving, nothing is pure, but both their mind and their conscience are defiled.
Paul says that the purity that God cares about has nothing to do with bowls. It has nothing to do with hands. It has to do with the mind and the conscience. It has to do with the inner man because, if you are clean there you are clean everywhere. If you have been purified there, you will be purified everywhere. Consequently, if you are dirty there, nothing will be pure to you. Everything will be defiled which is what we are going to talk about this week at Grace Fellowship Church.
This week, we are going to talk about the purity that God provides us with in Christ. We are going to talk about the cleanliness that He has given us through His Son. God is not ultimately interested in what you do with your hands, He is ultimately interested in what you do with your heart. He is not interested in what you do with your dishes and eating utensils, He is interested in what you do with your soul. That is where He cleans you off. So, if you would like to experience that, please join us this Sunday morning at 9:30. We meet at 46024 Riverside Drive in Chilliwack. If you would like to learn more about what it means to be pure on the inside, bring your Bibles and come ready to open them up to the Book of Titus. See you there! - Jeremy Cagle