Cleanse Me with Hyssop

I was reading in Psalm 51 and acknowledging that we are born sinners (vs 5) and by God’s unfailing love and great compassion he blots out our sin (vs 1).  Then in verse 7 David pleads with God: “Cleanse me with hyssop and I will be clean; wash me, and I will be whiter than snow.”

I wondered why David uses hyssop, so I looked it’s use up.

It was used in Exodus 12:21-22 by the Israelites to spread the lamb’s blood over the door posts sparing the Israelites from the judgment of the Egyptians.   In Leviticus 14:6 for the cleansing of a leper.  In numbers 19:1-10 for the sacrifice of a heifer which is burned then the ashes spread in water used by people for purifying themselves from sin.

Then in John 19: 28-30 the hyssop stalk is used to give Jesus wine while on the cross, just before he gave up his spirit and said:  “It is finished”.

I was struck by the consistent use of this plant from the Old to the New Testament for cleansing people from sin and sparing people from the righteous judgment of God.  The distinct identification of this plant to give Jesus a drink of wine before he gave himself up and took our sins away.  The same wine we drink in Communion symbolizing the shedding of his blood as the ultimate sacrifice for us.

Hebrews 9:12-14 references this:

“12 He did not enter by means of the blood of goats and calves; but he entered the Most Holy Place once for all by his own blood, thus obtaining[b] eternal redemption. 13 The blood of goats and bulls and the ashes of a heifer sprinkled on those who are ceremonially unclean sanctify them so that they are outwardly clean. 14 How much more, then, will the blood of Christ, who through the eternal Spirit offered himself unblemished to God, cleanse our consciences from acts that lead to death,[c] so that we may serve the living God!

When traced, the road signs in the bible that show us it’s reliability and show us that that indeed Jesus is our anointed savior consistently pointed out to us from the Old to New Testament. Even in the smallest details of the use of plants. From this we can be confident in who Jesus is and trust in what he has done to set us free.

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