First posted March 2011.
During my quiet time a few months back, I was reading through a chapter of an Old Testament book as well other portions of Scripture and found myself in Jeremiah which I hadn’t read in a long time. I found it interesting and encouraging. Especially when I got to Jeremiah 13. Then I laughed a bit before I sobered up and really dug into the truth of what God was saying to me.
Let me paraphrase some of what happens at the beginning of this chapter. God tells Jeremiah to go buy a linen loincloth (underwear), wear it and not get it wet. Then he had to take it off and bury it near a river. Later, Jeremiah was instructed to go dig it up.
This is what Jeremiah wrote: “Then I went to the Euphrates, and dug, and I took the loincloth from the place where I had hidden it. And behold, the loincloth was spoiled; it was good for nothing.” (Jer 13:7 ESV)
God then said to Jeremiah, “This evil people, who refuse to hear my words, who stubbornly follow their own heart and have gone after other gods to serve them and worship them, shall be like this loincloth, which is good for nothing.” (Jer 13:10 ESV)
I was amazed at how creative our God is in describing sin. Any parent knows first-hand the joys of “dirty underwear” or diapers. And God describes sin with that imagery (timeless truth!). When God looks at those of us who refuse to listen and obey His word, worship other things with our time and money, well, our pride is like dirty underwear to God.
Sin is like dirty underwear. Ewwwww!
I don’t want to be like dirty underwear before the Most High God! I wouldn even want anyone to suspect I might have dirty underwear that’s hidden. But this underwear that God is talking about is soiled beyond belief. There is no hiding the sin in our hearts before Him. It stinks. It reeks. It’s a colorful and yet repulsive image. I don’t like the idea of myself in my sin being on par with that kind of image. I don’t want to wear dirty underwear – physically or spiritually!
How about you?
For personal hygiene, I change my underwear every day. How much more do I need to take off the soiled underwear of my heart (confession of my sin) and exchange it at the cross for a fresh heart, forgiven and ready to move forward into a day, clean and pure in Christ.
Yes, my heart (underwear) will get dirty again. Hence the importance of daily confessing my sin to God and repenting before Him. I’m not good at this and yet here is where there is freedom and power. Jesus does the laundry, I just need to drop it in His laundry basket.
So as I continue to challenge myself in changing my “underwear” I hope you will do the same. God is ready to cleanse and wash us free of our sins and give us a fresh start every day!