White Washed Robes
Here is an interesting text for us to examine and to contemplate over, Revelation 7:14 “And I said unto him, Sir, thou knowest. And he said to me, These are they which came out of great tribulation, and have washed their robes, and made them white in the blood of the Lamb.”
If in your laundering you have ever tried to do this, then you will agree that you have failed miserably, for blood stained cloths are never white, and it is a very difficult stain to remove and to do it wrong, well then you can fix it into the cloth permanently, and it will basically never be removed.
Question; who are these people, well verse thirteen answers that, and if you missed the point it sends you back to the start of the chapter, and you find the 144,000. Now playing maths for fun, Israel was in captivity in Egypt (Sin) for 400 years. Let us call that “prophetic years”, so we multiply that by 30 days in a Hebrew month and then multiply that by twelve months in the year. So what is your answer, well 144,000 of course? Who Exodused from Egypt (Sin)? Well God’s redeemed and chosen people of course, his children, those that accepted him as their Redeemer.
Now I love scripture for its multi layers all saying the same theme. In Revelation we have a whole bunch of people, they are grouped under familiar twelve headings to point us back to Israel/Exodus. Now as there are no other tribes or peoples mentioned but only Israel, we have a direct parallel to the Exodus, where God with a mighty and strong arm brought his people out of bondage and into freedom and into the Promised Land. He is about to do it again and take his children from Egypt/Sin/Earth, home to his big house.
Let us have fun and play a bit. Each individual in this vast sea of faces had one thing in common as our verse portrays shiny clean white robes. Each had been to the Laundromat, in went the robe, pushed the “Jesus Blood” source, “Deep Cleanse/Heavily Soiled” cycle, and let the cleansing begin. Yes we are a bit naughty, but the Hebrew language actually has built into it this allowance.
Now it is time to get very serious; Why blood? In the Sacrificial System, that pointed our minds to the “Lamb of God that taketh away the sins of the World,” Sin meant a blood sacrifice (wages sin death/bleeding out) so instead of the sinner dying; a substitute was presented to die in the place of the sinner. This pointed forwards to Calvary, and us back to Calvary. Hebrews 9:22 “And almost all things are by the law purged with blood; and without shedding of blood is no remission.” Paul tells us that in Romans 3:20 “Therefore by the deeds of the law there shall no flesh be justified in his sight: for by the law [is] the knowledge of sin.” Paul is very clear that in essence the Law is a mirror, it just points out sin, it cannot wash, remove, cleanse for it is just a mirror. Cleansing is found in Jesus Christ alone, at the Jesus Laundromat.
I think it was one of the Wesley brothers that coined this phrase, I come to the Law and it sends me straight to Jesus, I come to Jesus and he sends me straight to the Law. I like it as it is correct, we come to Jesus and in repentance/confession for that sin and get the oops washed off our face/robe, then we go back to the law and find that we have something else there that we did not see first time, back to Jesus and confession and repentance and that is washed away as well. Confession, Washing, Growth in grace and wisdom and knowledge all tenderly led by the Holy Spirit as he grows us more and more into the full image of Jesus Christ our Saviour and Redeemer, that is why we are called “Christians,” we live and act and look just like our Saviour, Jesus Christ.
So the question is asked; are you, and am I, washing our robes in the blood of the lamb? The Hebrew gives only two choices, die for your own sin (wages of sin is death) and be lost forever, or use the only heaven acceptable sacrificial substitute Jesus Christ’s death on Calvary. Sorry but there are no other options, just two. Our text gave us a group that got wise and went to the Jesus Laundromat and came away cleansed. A great ole Hymn asks “Are you washed in the blood of the Lamb?” Well are you?
So when the Holy Spirit prompts us, directly, through Scripture, Prayer or whatever source, that we have a blemish or spot on our robe, we should always instantly Repent, Confess, make right any damage or injury caused to another party, put things right again. Now it is time to come to Jesus and make it right there and to leave our sin behind at the foot of the cross, let the Jesus Laundromat wash our robe spotlessly clean once more and get back into life again.
Do not fear that the cloth of the robe will be ruined by multiple washings, this is heavenly and everlasting and can stand many deep washings and still come out as great as it was when brand new. Remember this robe is yours for all eternity so it can not ever wear out, so keep it pearly white and washed clean and bright in the Jesus Laundromat.