«Blessed are those who wash their robes, that they may have the right to the tree of life» (Revelation 22:14, NIV).
THE QUOTATION FROM ELLEN WHITE on which we reflected yesterday continues saying the following:
Satan urges before God his accusations against them [that is, against those who have realized that their character is not yet like Christ’s, but want to obtain salvation], declaring that they have by their sins forfeited the divine protection, and claiming the right to destroy them as transgressors. He pronounces them just as deserving as himself of exclusion from the favor of God. «Are these,» he says, «the people who are to take my place in heaven and the place of the angels who united with me? While they profess to obey the law of God, have they kept its precepts? Have they not been lovers of self-more than of God? Have they not placed their own interests above His service? Have they not loved the things of the world? Look at the sins which have marked their lives. Behold their selfishness, their malice, their hatred toward one another.» The people of God have been in many respects very faulty. Satan has an accurate knowledge of the sins which he has tempted them to commit, and he presents these in the most exaggerated light, declaring: «Will God banish me and my angels from His presence, and yet reward those who have been guilty of the same sins? Thou canst not do this, O Lord, in justice, Thy throne will not stand in righteousness and judgment. Justice demands that sentence be pronounced against them,»
But while the followers of Christ have sinned, they have not given themselves to the control of evil. They have put away their sins, and have sought the Lord in humility and contrition, and the divine Advocate pleads in their behalf. He who has been most abused by their ingratitude, who knows their sin, and also their repentance, declares: » ‘The Lord rebuke thee, O Satan.’ I gave My life for these souls. They are graven upon the palms of My hands» (Counsels for the Church, ch. 65, pp. 352, 353).
There is our answer to yesterday’s question. What exactly does «washing my robes» mean? It means seeking the Lord with humility and contrition, recognizing that we have sinned but are unwilling to surrender to the control of evil