New Testament Clean & Unclean Laws Defined


Section #1: What is New Testament Separatism?

Section #2: Filthiness

Section #3: Pollution & Corruption

Section #4: Uncleanness & Defiled

Section #5: The Lawful Terms Which Communicate the Operation of NT Redemption

Uncleanness & Defiled

Points to Prove:

1)       A sinner by nature is unclean and defiled.

2)       A sinner in sinning is a cause of uncleanness and defilement through OT descriptive terms.

3)       A sinner through salvation in Christ is made clean and without defilement.


“And whatsoever the unclean person toucheth shall be unclean;

and the soul that toucheth it shall be unclean until even.” – Numbers 19:22

Touch not the unclean thing” – 2 Corinthians 6:17

Uncleanness comes from unclean things, and uncleanness spreads by touching unclean things. Unclean things are specified by scripture and outlawed in the Old and New Testaments. A list of objects or organisms which fall under the “touch not” mandate includes: certain beasts and creeping things (Lev. 5:2), certain ways of death happening to clean animals making them unclean (Lev. 17:15), and a cursed sin-laden scapegoat (Lev. 16). Uncleanness would also pass upon a man through touching dead bodies (Lev. 5:3) or leprosy (Lev. 14). Uncleanness does also pass upon a man by the engagement of outlawed behavior and sin, like the act of committing adultery (Lev. 20:21). Furthermore, also, there was uncleanness of Land (Lev. 18), unclean places (Lev. 10:14, 14:40-45), unclean houses and homes (Lev. 14), and uncleanness of garments (Lev. 14). The uncleanness of houses, garments, objects, and things would exist via a plague of leprosy, for example, or the excrement of running issues lathering the places and things whithersoever the diseased man went (Lev. 15:4), or, of course, other unclean things spreading uncleanness touch-by-touch.

The word defiled is used to describe the spreading-effect by which an unclean thing makes another object or person unclean. The awful process by which the clean thing becomes an unclean thing (clean-to-unclean) is called, defilement. For example, the word “defiled” was used to express the effect of uncleanness spreading upon the Land via sexual sins (Lev. 18:25, 27). Or, for example, if a Priest was defiled by a dead body and then entered into the Sanctuary of the Temple while being unclean, this would defile the Sanctuary (Lev. 10:6-11, 21:10-12, Num. 19:20, Ezek. 5:11, 23:38-39). Having thus far overviewed the various features of biblical uncleanness specifically speaking in differentiation one from another, we need to move into the heart of the matter: the uncleanness of unforgiven sin. Uncleanness and/or defilement exist via the activity of any sin and all sin, if it is unforgiven.

General Uncleanness & Inward Uncleanness via Unforgiven Sin

It was said once, “I am clean without transgression, I am innocent; neither is there iniquity in me” (Job 33:9). Apparently cleanness is equivalent to innocence, justification, righteousness, and salvation in the Old Testament. But, my reader, consider the sober question: “What is man, that he should be clean? And he which is born of a woman, that he should be righteous” (Job 15:14)? All of scripture exists to answer this question! Humanity is viewed in terms of uncleanness at their lowest point: born into the spiritual death caused by Original Sin. Speaking on this wise, furthermore, David said, “Behold, I was shapen in iniquity; and in sin did my mother conceive me” (Ps. 51:5)… therefore how can a man born of a woman be clean? Search every man on earth, “Who can bring a clean thing out of an unclean? Not one” (Job 14:4)! But when and if mankind looks to the salvation which God provides: “all things are possible” (Mark 10:27)! King David understood salvation and damnation in these terms, my reader: The Clean & The Unclean.

Having a heart towards the salvation which God does perform and provide – a Divine-Washing and a Divine-Cleansing – David cried out to God, “Wash me throughly from mine iniquity, and cleanse me from my sin” (Ps. 51:2). “Purge me with hyssop, and I shall be clean: wash me, and I shall be whiter than snow” (Ps. 51:7). In David’s prayers we can see a deep understanding of The Clean and Unclean Laws as they pertained to the unforgiven sin which he had committed during the time of his backsliding. David sought after inner-cleansing not outward-cleansing, first of all! Speaking of this, David confessed, “Thou desirest truth in the inward parts” (Ps. 51:6), because he understood the inner-workings of salvation personally and experientially, though he was backslidden. David needed a cleansing within that only God could perform! Only God makes men clean in the “inward parts” via a Divine-Washing and a Divine-Cleansing! Think of it, my reader. David used the terms, “wash”, “cleanse”, and “purge”, because he understood the defiling effect of sin in backslidden and unclean men! His confession to God was, in other words, “I am unclean!”, “I am unclean!”, and thus he cried: “Wash me!”, “Cleanse me!”, and “Purge me!”

“Create in me a clean heart” – Ps. 51:10

Only an inward washing can cleanse an unclean heart. David cried, “Create in me a clean heart, O God; and renew a right spirit within me” (Ps. 51:10)! David knew that he could not give himself a clean heart. He humbly demonstrated the wisdom of Proverbs 20:9, which said, “who can say, I have made my heart clean, I am pure from my sin?” God answered David’s prayers and gave him a clean heart by the washing, cleansing, and purging power of the Holy Ghost! In acknowledgment that inward washing, cleansing, and purging comes from the inner-working of an indwelling Holy Ghost, David cried, “Cast me not away from Thy presence; and take not Thy Holy Spirit from me” (Psalm 51:11)! David’s prayers demonstrate the doctrines he was taught concerning The Clean and Unclean Laws – doctrines which were known by the public and proclaimed by the faithful. Demonstrating the commonality of this knowledge, it was written, “Truly God is good to Israel, even to such as are of a clean heart” (Psalm 73:1), and contrary to estate the psalmist said of the wicked, “they are corrupt” (Ps. 73:8). Whether in the Old Testament or the New Testament, whether through the pre-incarnate Christ (1 Pet. 1:11, 1 Cor. 10:1-4, Acts 2:25) or the post-incarnate Christ (Eph. 3:17, 1 Pet. 1:22), salvation is by a Holy Ghost cleansing via His indwelling (Matt. 23:26, 1 Jn. 1:9). Expounding these doctrines further in an Old Testament sense, the psalmist declared,

“Blessed are the undefiled [the clean] in the way, who walk in the law of the LORD. Blessed are they that keep his testimonies, and that seek him with the whole heart. They also do no iniquity: they walk in his ways. Thou hast commanded us to keep thy precepts diligently. O that my ways were directed to keep Thy statutes! Then shall I not be ashamed when I have respect unto all Thy commandments. I will praise Thee with uprightness of heart, when I shall have learned Thy righteous judgments. I will keep Thy statutes: O forsake me not utterly” (Ps. 119:1-8).

Those who are clean before God do, by necessity, “walk in the Law of the LORD” (Ps. 119:1). Psalm 119:1 references to the Old Testament dilemma of damnation via uncleanness: an uncleanness which is universal, general, inward, and existing everywhere unforgiven sin is (according to the aforementioned scriptures referenced heretofore). Those who are clean escaped from this dilemma do, therefore, “walk in the Law of the LORD” (Ps. 119:1) – this is the undefiled way! Speaking on this wise in a New Testament sense, Jesus said to His disciples, “thou art clean by the word which has been spoken to thee” (John 15:3). Not all were clean (John 13:10-11), for not all obeyed from the heart that form of doctrine which was delivered unto them (Rom. 6:15-23). Judas was not obeying the words of Jesus Christ and so, in a New Testament sense, Judas was not walking in the Law of the LORD which is the undefiled pathway. Judas was deceived. “All the ways of man are clean in his own eyes; but the LORD weigheth the spirits” (Prov. 16:2), and Judas was found wanting. The good, clean, and saving doctrine of Jesus Christ was weighty and severe, bound with eternal consequences. It is written that Jesus Christ “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” (Eph. 5:25-27) – this is a staggering presentation! If this is what Jesus Christ died to accomplish, shall we not take the time to understand and interpret its meaning and significance for New Testament Christianity? It is apparent that Jesus Christ was burdened to “sanctify”, to “cleanse”, and to “wash”, and therefore we must learn what it is to be unsanctified, uncleansed, and unwashed! With the same severity and urgency found in Psalm 119:1-8, should we not take heed? The psalmist cried,

“O forsake me not utterly!” – Psalm 119:8

Salvation = an entire submission of the human will to God (though not “sinlessly perfect”, it is consciously perfect), a continual and ever-increasing or ever-renewing subjection to the will to God (as faith, revelation-knowledge, and understanding increases); the result being: a continual willingness and violent pursuit of God’s will at all times.

A Whole-Hearted Man as Seen

in the Totality of His Faculties

Wholeness of Heart – Ps.119:2, 10, 58-60, 69, 111-112, 145-148

Soul/heart/love – Ps.119:20, 25, 28, 81, 36, 32, 47, 167, 174

Longing/panting – Ps.119:40, 131, Eyes – Ps.119:18, 82, 30, 37

Mouth/tongue/declaration–Ps.119:13, 171-172, 57, 26, 43, 27, 46

Determination/confidence/oath –Ps.119:44, 33, 34, 8, 30, 94, 106

Feet/running/ways – Ps.119:32, 3, 5, 123, 101, 105, 133, 168

Un-forgetting/meditation – Ps.119:16, 48, 93, 153

Fear – Ps.119:38, 120, Horror –Ps.119:53, Weeping –Ps.119:136

Zeal – Ps. 119:139, Anguish – Ps. 119:143, Grief – Ps. 119:158

Awe – Ps. 119:161, Peace – Ps. 119:165, Sweetness – Ps. 119:103

Rejoicing vs. Riches – Ps. 119:72, 111, 127-128, 162

Hours & Time Spent – morning (Ps. 119:147), all day (Ps. 119:97, 164), and night (Ps. 119:55, 62, 148)

Do you cry this prayer to God? Perhaps if you understood the Clean & Unclean Laws in New Testament Reality you would! The psalmist cried out to God because he knew that God would “forsake utterly” those who were unclean or defiled according to the Old Testament (Psalm 119:8)! He knew that clean and unclean was a matter of life and death. Those who are unclean and defiled do not obey God. The psalmist said to God, they do not “keep Thy statutes” (Ps. 119:8). It takes a fully surrendered heart or, a “whole heart” (Ps. 119:2), for a man to “so learn Christ” as to “hear Him” and “be taught by Him” to walk the narrow way of righteousness “which after God is created in righteousness and true holiness” (Eph. 4:19-21, 24)! Do you have a “whole heart”, my reader? Is the Spirit of God working in you what it did for Caleb and Joshua, to whom it was said, “they have wholly followed the LORD” (Num. 32:12). The Lord did plainly say that it was “because [they] had another spirit with [them], and hath followed [God] fully” (Num. 14:24). When the Spirit of God comes within a man in cleansing power, it was written, “Then the eyes of the blind shall be opened, and the ears of the deaf shall be unstopped [Isaiah 35:5, Eph. 4:17-19]. Then shall the lame man leap as an hart, and the tongue of the dumb sing: for in the wilderness shall waters break out, and streams in the desert [Isaiah 35:6, Hebrews 12:12-13]. And the parched ground shall become a pool, and the thirsty land springs of water: in the habitation of dragons, where each lay, shall be grass with reeds and rushes [Isaiah 35:7, John 7:37]. And an highway shall be there, and a way, and it shall be called The Way of Holiness [John 14:7]; the unclean shall not pass over it; but it shall be for those: the wayfaring men, though fools, shall not err therein” [Isaiah 35:8, Hebrews 12:13-14]. My reader, do you know this way of holiness wherein the unclean do not pass over? It is tread by the strong and forsaken by the weak!


Strengthen ye the weak hands, and confirm the feeble knees. Say to them that are of a fearful heart, Be strong, fear not: behold, your God will come with vengeance, even God with a recompence; he will come and save you. Then the eyes of the blind shall be opened, and the ears of the deaf shall be unstopped. Then shall the lame man leap as an hart, and the tongue of the dumb sing: for in the wilderness shall waters break out, and streams in the desert. And the parched ground shall become a pool, and the thirsty land springs of water: in the habitation of dragons, where each lay, shall be grass with reeds and rushes. And an Highway shall be there, and a Way, and it shall be called The Way of Holiness; the unclean shall not pass over it; but it shall be for those: the wayfaring men, though fools, shall not err therein.” – Isaiah 35:3-8

“And ye have forgotten the exhortation which speaketh unto you as unto children, My son, despise not thou the chastening of the Lord, nor faint when thou art rebuked of him: For whom the Lord loveth he chasteneth, and scourgeth every son whom he receiveth. If ye endure chastening, God dealeth with you as with sons; for what son is he whom the father chasteneth not? But if ye be without chastisement, whereof all are partakers, then are ye bastards, and not sons. Furthermore we have had fathers of our flesh which corrected us, and we gave them reverence: shall we not much rather be in subjection unto the Father of spirits, and live? For they verily for a few days chastened us after their own pleasure; but he for our profit, that we might be partakers of His holiness. Now no chastening for the present seemeth to be joyous, but grievous: nevertheless afterward it yieldeth the peaceable fruit of righteousness unto them which are exercised thereby. Wherefore lift up the hands which hang down, and the feeble knees; And make straight paths for your feet, lest that which is lame be turned out of the way; but let it rather be healed. Follow peace with all men, and holiness, without which no man shall see the Lord: Looking diligently lest any man fail of the grace of God; lest any root of bitterness springing up trouble you, and thereby many be defiled;” – Hebrews 12:5-15

AFTER BEING SAVED, the writer of Hebrews argued: we must guard against any root of bitterness and defilement springing up from backsliders who err from The Way Holiness; lest we, through fellowship with spiritual fools (Eph. 5:10), err in their foolishness and fall asleep by their side (2 Pet. 3:17-18, Eph. 5:8-17, Matt 25:1-13). We must, on the contrary, stay on the holy pathway via the empowerment of God’s strength instead of the feeble-knees of unbelief, thus by God’s healing of all backsliding unto the perfection of personal holiness we can avoid the amputating power of God’s wrath against unholy members who are cut off for the perfection of corporate holiness; lest we, alongside them, become defiled in the poisonous apostasy which defiles many (Heb. 12:12-15, Deut. 29:18).

“Woe is me! For I am undone; because I am a man of unclean lips, and I dwell in the midst of a people of unclean lips: for mine eyes have seen the King, the LORD of hosts.” – Isaiah 6:5

You see, my reader, we need to conceptualize the reality of Isaiah’s lamentation in this present hour. The danger exists today! Such an apostate and dangerous situation is depicted in the New Testament Books of 2nd Peter and Jude. There were many people with “unclean lips” (Isaiah 6:5) in the 1st century Church which spoke with “guile” and spewed-out “uncleanness” (1 Thess. 2:3) to the defilement of many souls (“thereby many be defiled”-Heb. 12:15). They did not preach the clean doctrines of God but, rather, “great swelling words of vanity” (2 Peter 2:18). The backsliders continued with the Christians in some cases (2 Pet. 2:13), which indicates that they did not verbally apostatize from the form of Christianity (2 Tim. 3:5), but to the damnation of their own souls, it was written, “These are spots in your feasts of charity, when they feast with you, feeding themselves without fear” (Jude 12). Some of this number were furthermore characterized as those who “walk after the flesh in the lust of uncleanness” (2 Pet. 2:10). This is the way of the perishing, the way of the world that passes away like a shadow, but “the fear of the LORD is clean, enduring for ever” (Psalm 19:9)! Yes, and therefore, those who are fearless of the LORD are unclean (“feeding themselves without fear” -Jude 12). The sin of fearlessness is a fellowship-breaker because “God is greatly to be feared in the assembly of the saints, and to be had in reverence of all them that are about Him” (Psalm 89:7), blessed be His Holy Name!

“thereby many be defiled” – Heb. 12:15

In way or in word, unclean men threaten the cleanliness of others! They are a root of bitterness whereby many are defiled (Heb. 12:15)! They walk in “pernicious ways” speaking speeches of “feigned words”, and they do not know “the way of truth” (2 Peter 1:2-3). They do not verbally deny the Lord Jesus in actual Name-renouncement, but they deny the Lord Jesus by their deeds (Titus 1:16, 2 Peter 2:1, Jude 1:4), even by covetousness, for example (2 Peter 2:3, 14-15, 18). They are, in person, an infection amidst the Church as “spots and blemishes” (2 Peter 2:13). They are, in walk, “after the flesh in the lust of uncleanness” (2 Peter 2:10). They are, in service, “the servants of corruption” (2 Peter 2:19); and though they “promise [others] liberty” by saying, “my doctrine is pure” (Job 11:4), they “allure through the lusts of the flesh, through much wantonness, those that were clean escaped from them who live in error” (2 Peter 1:18). It is by the Divine nature that men escape the “corruption that is in the world through lust”, according to 2 Peter 1:4, but these men, through the deceit of justifying wickedness (Eph. 5:6, Gal. 6:7-9, 1 Cor. 6:9-10, 1 John 3:7), and through evil communications which “corrupt good manners” (1 Cor. 15:33), receive a  greater condemnation: “For if after they have escaped the pollutions of the world through the knowledge of the Lord and Savior Jesus Christ, they are again entangled therein, and overcome, the latter end is worse with them than the beginning. For it had been better for them not to have known the way of righteousness, than, after they have known it, to turn from the holy commandment delivered unto them. But it happened unto them according to the true proverb, The dog is turned to his own vomit again; and the sow that was washed to her wallowing in the mire” (2 Peter 2:20-22).

The Salvation Experience in Terms of Cleanliness

“According as His Divine power hath given unto us…exceeding and precious promises: that by these ye might be partakers of the Divine Nature, having escaped the corruption that is in the world through lust.” – 2 Peter 1:3-4

The Backsliders Experience in Terms of Defilement

“For if after they have escaped the pollutions of the world through the knowledge of the Lord and Saviour Jesus Christ, they are again entangled therein, and overcome, the latter end is worse with them than the beginning.” – 2 Peter 2:20

In way or in word and on the contrary to the aforementioned backsliders, men with “pure minds” (2 Peter 3:1) follow the “holy commandment” (2 Peter 2:21) which is “the way of righteousness” (2 Peter 2:21)! This is The Highway of Holiness tread by those who have “escaped from them who live in error”! But the backsliders were individuals who were, according to 2 Peter: “escaped” (2 Pet. 2:18, 20), “washed” (2 Pet. 2:22), and “turned” (2 Pet. 2:22), but then they erred from the way of holiness and wandered into the path of “corruption” (2 Pet. 1:4, 2:19), “pollution” (2 Pet. 2:19), “uncleanness” (2 Pet. 10), “vanity” (2 Pet. 2:18), “error” (2 Pet. 2:18), “bondage” (2 Pet. 2:19), “vomit” (2 Pet. 2:22), and “mire” yet again (2 Pet. 2:22)! The “corruption” or “pollution” of the world (2 Pet. 1:4, 2:20) categorizes all lust and sin which originates from the world (“the lust of the flesh, the lust of the eyes, and the pride of life” – 1Jn.2:17).

“What manner of persons ought ye to be in all holy conversation and godliness?” - 2 Peter 3:11

no unclean person…hath any inheritance in the Kingdom of Christ and of God” – Eph. 5:5

In the New Testament, all manners of uncleanness are defined so that we might walk-out, in Christ, all manners of holiness! The inspired writers did specify what uncleanness was (and its synonyms: pollution, corruption, and defilement) so that we might recognize, firstly, the potential of our own defilement (clean-turned-unclean), secondarily, our susceptibility to allurement into a position whereby, shockingly, we forfeit our Divine-reception before God the Father (because of the touchable-ness or spread-ability of unclean things; 2 Cor. 6:17-18), and, thirdly, while we stand in the very thrall of imminent uncleanness whereabouts many become defiled (Heb. 12:15), we must behave cautiously, circumspectly, and obedient to the means of our perseverance according to scriptural instruction (“from such withdraw thyself” – 1 Tim. 6:5, 2 Tim. 3:5, Eph. 5:1-17). My dear brethren in the Lord, I entreat you: with the same urgency and gravity which motivates us to shun fornication, murder, drunkenness, witchcraft, and idolatry, that we should, moreover, avoid uncleanness! The judgment bar is settled into an unmovable position: “no unclean person…hath any inheritance in the kingdom of Christ and of God” (Eph. 5:5, Gal. 5:19-21, Col. 3:5, 2 Cor. 12:21-13:5; 1 Pet. 1:17). All this being said, we must see our own susceptibility to allurement into uncleanness by way of the unclean man itself coming alive again (“the old man”-Eph. 4:22, Col. 3:9). For example, when and if we broaden our scope of love to include in it the behaviors which God forbids, and, thus, we look too kindly and behave too friendly with a situation of mass backsliding so that, subtly, and by a false sense of “liberty” (2 Pet. 2:19, Jude 1:4), our self-mortification is left off and our undefiled religion is lost (Rom. 8:13, James 1:26-27)!

The Prerogative for Self-Mortification

“that which cometh out of the mouth, this defileth the man” – Matthew 15:11

Speaking into a situation of mass backsliding and imminent uncleanness on every side, the Lord Jesus said, “Hear, and understand: not that which goeth into the mouth defileth a man; but that which cometh out of the mouth, this defileth a man” (Matt. 15:10-11). The backsliders and apostates were oblivious to the truth: The Clean & Unclean Laws in New Testament Reality. God’s command was and is, “Come out from among them and be ye separate, saith the Lord, and touch not the unclean thing” (2 Cor. 6:17), and yet the common “Christian” of today has no idea what Jesus Christ was teaching when he said, “that which cometh out of the mouth, this defileth a man” (Matt. 15:11). Is Jesus Christ saying that Christians cannot be defiled? No. He was clarifying to all by what means all men can be defiled: “this defileth a man”, Christ said. And when a man is defiled he must be dejected from the Church assembly according to 2 Corinthians 6:17-7:1.

“And the tongue is a fire, a world of iniquity: so is the tongue among our members, that it defileth the whole body, and setteth on fire the course of nature; and it is set on fire of hell.” – James 3:6

“let us cleanse ourselves from all filthiness of the flesh and spirit, perfecting holiness in the fear of God” – 2 Cor. 7:1

“And Jesus said, Are ye also yet without understanding? Do not ye yet understand, that whatsoever entereth in at the mouth goeth into the belly, and is cast out into the draught? But those things which proceed out of the mouth come forth from the heart; and they defile the man. For out of the heart proceed evil thoughts, murders, adulteries, fornications, thefts, false witness, blasphemies: These are the things which defile a man: but to eat with unwashen hands defileth not a man” - Matt. 15:16-20

Can you hear the words of God and apply them to yourself, my reader? And not to yourself only, but to your entire congregation which gathers for what is commonly called “Sunday Worship”? God is burdened about our cleanliness and our holiness which is achieved via “true religion”, which affects our words (Jas. 1:26-27)! God is burdened about every individual congregant’s 7-day-a-week lifestyle including every word they have spoken all week long! But people stumble into “Church” on Sunday morning expecting to meet with God… when, in truth, they are set on fire in the very flames of hell (James 3:6)! “They have cast fire into Thy Sanctuary, they have defiled by casting down the dwelling place of Thy Name to the ground” (Ps. 74:7). Many people suppose that God is pleased when impenitent sinners attend Church on Sunday, thinking, “At least they went to Church.” If they only knew that it is at this point - when sinners “faithfully attend Church”, God is all the more infuriated!

The Spiritual Activity of the Once-Born and Backslidden

“And the tongue is a fire, a world of iniquity: so is the tongue among our members, that it defileth the whole body, and setteth on fire the course of nature; and it is set on fire of hell.” – James 3:6

Unclean people think to worship God while they stand a-blaze in the fiery passions of hell! Aye, they belong to the congregation below and not the congregation which is from above. Unclean persons think to gain favor from God by a faithful attendance to “Church” on Sunday, but they, disfavoring God, stand among God’s holy people in the repulsive condition which James named, a defiled body. Unwittingly, because such men are ignorant of The Clean & Unclean Laws in New Testament Reality, they render the assembly of God unacceptable by their defiled bodies (“I will receive you”-2Cor.6:17). Unwittingly, they set on fire the course of nature all around them! Do you think that God is pleased with lip-service and mouth-worship, while the heart is utterly unclean before the Lord? Speaking on this wise, the Lord said,


“Forasmch as this people draw near Me with their mouth, and with their lips do honour Me, but have removed their heart far from Me, and their fear toward Me is taught by the precept of men: Therefore, behold, I will proceed to do a marvelous work among this people, even a marvelous work and a wonder: for the wisdom of their wise men shall perish, and the understanding of their prudent men shall be hid.” – Isaiah 29:13-14

The threat has come to pass already! Unclean men gather in Churches they call “Sanctuaries” expecting to be received by The Sanctified One – God Almighty – all the while they are in utter contradiction to the rules of acceptance laid forth by the Lord: The Clean & Unclean Laws in New Testament Reality. It is the precept of men that has taught them so to do, for their wisdom has perished and their understanding is hidden. Most of these Sunday-worshippers live 7-day-a-week lifestyles of hell-fire defilement, and they want to spend an hour with the God of heaven who dwells in unapproachable holiness!?

Cleanliness in the Totality of our Human Faculties

The Lord Jesus said,

“Either make the tree good, and his fruit good; or else make the tree corrupt, and his fruit corrupt: for the tree is known by his fruit. O generation of vipers, how can ye, being evil, speak good things? for out of the abundance of the heart the mouth speaketh. A good man out of the good treasure of the heart bringeth forth good things: and an evil man out of the evil treasure bringeth forth evil things. But I say unto you, That every idle word that men shall speak, they shall give account thereof in the Day of Judgment. For by thy words thou shalt be justified, and by thy words thou shalt be condemned.” – Matthew 12:33-37

Do you see the reason behind God’s burden, my reader? Do you see why God is burdened about our words? True religion, clean religion, pure religion, and undefiled religion affects the words of the individual (James 1:26-27)! “For by thy words thou shalt be justified, and by thy words thou shalt be condemned” (Matt. 12:37), Christ said. He was pointing to the evidence of true religion: 7-day-a-week worshippers of God! A wise man once said, ‘What do you talk about all day long… that is your “god”!’ For, indeed, “out of the abundance of the heart the mouth speaketh!” Therefore all men who have clean hearts speak clean words! Where Christ dwells Christ will be heard (Eph. 3:17)! And all men whose hearts have become the Temple of God (“ye are the Temple of God”-1 Cor. 3:17), even they, exclusively, are welcome in the New Testament assembly which is, collectively speaking, the arena which becomes the New Testament Temple of God (“there am I in the midst of them”-Matt.18:20). The instrument of the mouth is the tongue, and the tongue speaks forth that which comes from the heart, and those things which proceed out of the mouth do, as James said, “defileth the whole body”, or as Christ said, justify the whole man (Matt. 12:37)! Is this in your New Testament vocabulary, brethren? We must study to shew ourselves approved unto God and undefiled in worship! If the tongue can defile us then we must do as James commanded, “purify [our] hearts” (James 4:8)! Not just our hearts but everything: the heart, mind, conscience, soul, and body (1 Thess. 5:23-24)! We need cleanliness in the totality of our human faculties! If we have doctrines of truth which are teaching ways of New Testament purity, holiness, and cleanliness, the washing and cleansing power of God results in a “pure heart” (1 Tim. 1:5, 2 Tim. 2:22, Matt. 5:8, 1 Peter 1:22), a “pure mind” (2 Peter 3:1), a “pure conscience” (1 Tim. 3:9, 2 Tim. 1:3), “a purified soul” (1 Peter 1:22), and all this, therefore, is “pure and undefiled religion” (James 1:27) in the sight of God! Purity is expressed in all actions of the person: “In word, in conversation, in charity, in spirit, in faith”, because “our conversation is in heaven” from whence cometh our purity and holiness (1 Tim. 4:12, Php. 4:20).

“But whoso looketh into the perfect law of liberty, and continueth therein, he being not a forgetful hearer, but a doer of the work, this man shall be blessed in his deed. If any man among you seem to be religious, and bridleth not his tongue, but deceiveth his own heart, this man's religion is vain. Pure religion and undefiled before God and the Father is this, To visit the fatherless and widows in their affliction, and to keep himself unspotted from the world.” – James 1:25-27

“And the tongue is a fire, a world of iniquity: so is the tongue among our members, that it defileth the whole body, and setteth on fire the course of nature; and it is set on fire of hell.” – James 3:6

Does “pure and undefiled religion in the sight of God” have nothing to do with the tongue? Or is the tongue the very means by which men are spotted, defiled, and made unholy (Jas. 3:6)? The tongue IS the member that is able to spew-out the filthiness of the world to the defilement of our bodies! The tongue is able to let loose rivers of poison from the members of our fallen bodies (Col. 3:5)! Paul called the human body, “the body of this death” (Rom. 7:31). In another place the body is called, “corruption” (1 Cor. 15:50). Therefore the terms of present-progressive salvation were: “walk in the Spirit, and ye shall not fulfill the lust of the flesh” (Gal. 5:16). Walking after the flesh is a walking in the uncleanness and corruption of spiritual death: the natural man (Rom. 8:6, 1 Cor. 2:14, 1 Cor. 3:3). Salvation is walking as Christ and in Christ (Php. 1:19, Col. 2:6), as one that is alive from the dead through Him (Rom. 6:13)! Considering salvation and damnation in these terms, the scripture concludes: one who is “beset” (Heb. 12:2) by the flesh will forfeit a “good conscience” (1 Tim. 1:5, 19, 1 Peter 3:21) for an “evil conscience” (Heb. 10:22), a “sprinkled” clean “conscience” and heart (Heb. 10:22) to a mind and conscience that “is defiled” (Titus 1:15-16), a “pure conscience” to another “rule” with them who “mind earthly things” (1 Tim. 3:9, Php. 4:16, 19), a pure mind to become one of the “men of corrupt minds, reprobate concerning the faith” (2 Tim. 3:8). A pure mind exists in a man that is affectionate toward things in heaven, as Colossians commanded: “Set your affection on things above not on things on earth” (Col. 3:2). Spiritual vision coming from this holy place “is pure, enlightening the eyes” (Prov. 16:6, Psalm 19:9).

“Wherefore, beloved, seeing that ye look for such things, be diligent that ye may be found of Him in peace, without spot, and blameless” (2 Peter 3:14).

“But as He which hath called you is holy, so be ye holy in all manner of conversation” (1 Peter 1:15).

“Finally, brethren, whatsoever things are true, whatsoever things are honest, whatsoever things are just, whatsoever things are pure, whatsoever things are lovely, whatsoever things are of good report; if there be any virtue, and if there be any praise, think on these things.” - Php. 4:8

“And whatsoever ye do in word or deed, do all in the name of the Lord Jesus, giving thanks to God and the Father by Him” (Col. 3:17).

You see, my brethren, we must be “fashioned” (1 Peter 1:14) after the “bowels” (Col. 3:12) of Christ Jesus in our inner man, for “we have the mind of Christ” (1 Cor. 2:16). “But as He which hath called you is holy, so be ye holy in all manner of conversation” (1 Peter 1:15). Is not the greatest benefit of our faith “that Christ may dwell in [our] hearts” (Eph. 3:17)? Yes, it is! And this experience does clean the totality of our human faculties so that they are operated by the indwelling and Living Christ! So that, according to Colossians 3:17, “whatsoever we do in word or deed”, it is all in the Name/Person of the Lord Jesus Christ! Is not all our hope and glory “Christ in you” (Col. 1:27), as Paul said? Thus our thought-life must be “pure” (Php. 4:8). Oh, my reader! Give diligence and heed the solemn duty to walk in the outworking of grace and pure religion!

Let no corrupt communication proceed out of your mouth, but that which is good to the use of edifying, that it may minister grace unto the hearers. And grieve not the Holy Spirit of God, whereby ye are sealed unto the day of redemption.” – Ephesians 4:29-30

It was written, “how oft did they provoke Him in the wilderness, and grieve Him in the desert” (Psalm 78:40)! Paul called it “corrupt communication”, in Ephesians 4:29. This is because filthiness or corruption is that which defiles (Jude 8). Sinning by word or speech is, therefore, a “filthy communication out of [the] mouth” (Col. 3:8). All kinds of sinful talking is “filthiness” and “foolish talking” (Eph. 5:4), according to scripture. This is anything carnal that does not give edification and grace (Eph. 4:29), is called in Eph. 4:29 as “corrupt communication”. James said, “Wherefore lay apart all filthiness and superfluity of naughtiness, and receive with meekness the engrafted word, which is able to save your souls” (Jas. 1:21). Laying apart all filthiness in the book of James means, to plug-up and mortify all sinful emotions which motivate sinful speeches (see James 1:19-20). A bridled tongue is one that is not given to the “superfluity of naughtiness”, which means: the overflowing of wickedness. Filthiness is wickedness, wickedness is uncleanness, uncleanness defiles, therefore a bridled tongue is a religion of power (Rom. 1:16) that keeps one “pure and undefiled”, and, therefore, “unspotted from the world” (James 1:26-27). The gospel is to be obeyed (2 Thess. 1:8), and when it is obeyed by faith (1 Peter 1:17) it makes men obey by word and deed (Rom. 6:16); thus, “We are kept by the power of God through faith” (1 Peter 1:5). Whosoever is kept by the power of God is also kept from the defiling spots of uncleanness, this is for sure! If men will be damned it is because they followed in the footsteps of those men who grieved God (Heb. 3:17), who erred in their heart (Ps. 95:10), who spoke sentences of murmur and disputing (1 Cor. 10:10, Php 2:14-15), which is, in other words: “corrupt communication” (Eph. 4:29)! Let it not be said of us, “But they rebelled, and vexed His Holy Spirit: therefore He was turned to be their enemy, and He fought against them” (Isa. 63:10).

Oh that we would not be like the damned, to whom it was spoke: “a people that do err in their heart, and they have not known My ways” (Ps. 95:10)! God is grieved at once single sentence of uncleanness proceeding out of the mouth so much so that men died for it (1 Cor. 10:10)! It is a “superfluity of naughtiness”, an overflow of carnal imagination made possible by a faithless heart which refuses to “obey His voice” (Heb. 3-4) or “receive with meekness the engrafted word” (James 1:21). My reader, are you allowing Christ to save you “with the washing of water by the word” (Eph. 5:26)? If we receive with meekness the engrafted word we will not experience the overflowing of wickedness, we will not grieve God, and thus He will not destroy us for the error of our hearts (Ps. 95:10) – the heart will remain clean. “Ye therefore, beloved, seeing ye know these things before, beware lest ye also, being led away with the error of the wicked, fall from your own stedfastness” (2 Peter 3:17). Words do weary God (Mal. 2:20), my reader, especially the thought-life or verbalized-expressions which come from a heart of faithlessness and fearlessness (Deut. 7:17), an “unmindful” forgetting that God is a holy and terrible One (Deut 32:18-20). Beware lest we also undergo what happened to them, of whom it was said, “they are a very froward generation, children in whom is no faith” (Deut. 32:20). And again, “Of the Rock that begat thee thou art unmindful, and hast forgotten God that formed thee. And when the LORD saw it, He abhorred them, because of the provoking of his sons, and of his daughters. And he said, I will hide my face from them, I will see what their end shall be: for they are a very forward generation, children in whom is no faith” (Deut 32:18-20). Evidently, it was no small thing to weary and grieve God (Isaiah 7:13, 63:10).