Whiter Than Snow

Isaiah 1:16–18:

Wash yourselves; make yourselves clean; remove the evil of your deeds from before my eyes; cease to do evil, learn to do good; seek justice, correct oppression; bring justice to the fatherless, plead the widow’s cause.

“Come now, let us reason together, says the Lord: though your sins are like scarlet, they shall be as white as snow; though they are red like crimson, they shall become like wool.

This is such an interesting contrast Isaiah uses because of the materials involved. Once blood stains something, can be incredibly difficult to get back out. During Isaiah’s life, it might have been practically impossible to clean. Likewise, snow falls the purest of whites, but it’s impossible to return snow to that pristine state once stained. Think of slush on the side of a rode. That snow will never be white again.

Isaiah basically says that God cleans us from impossible stains to make us impossibly clean. But with God, we know that the impossible is always possible. Our sins make us unclean, but no stain of sin is so permanent that our Savior cannot cleanse us.

David expresses a similar idea in Psalm 51:7–10:

Purify me with hyssop, and I will be clean; wash me, and I will be whiter than snow. Let me hear joy and gladness; let the bones You have crushed rejoice.

Turn Your face away from my sins and blot out all my guilt. God, create a clean heart for me and renew a steadfast spirit within me.

See also 1 Peter 2:19–21:

In that state He also went and made a proclamation to the spirits in prison who in the past were disobedient, when God patiently waited in the days of Noah while an ark was being prepared. In it a few — that is, eight people — were saved through water. Baptism, which corresponds to this, now saves you (not the removal of the filth of the flesh, but the pledge of a good conscience toward God) through the resurrection of Jesus Christ.

Our Savior cleanses us through baptism today. He invites us to come to Him, be cleansed of our sins, and be made whiter than snow in our Father’s eyes. We have a Father who wants us to be with Him, remove our impurities, and make us impossibly clean of our transgressions. We just have to come to Him in faith and humility.

May we be a people who learns to do good, seeks justice, corrects oppression, and loves justice. May we repent of the sins that stain us so thoroughly and allow our Savior to make us whiter than snow.