A Clean Slate

“You were redeemed . . with the precious blood of Christ.” 1 Peter 1:18-19 NIV

“The slate has been wiped clean; God is giving you a fresh start.”

My thoughts today are about “a clean slate.”

The expression, a clean slate, comes from a slate upon which a tavern’s daily bill of fare was written in soft chalk to be easily erased for a new day’s menu, and from a previous generation of school children who wrote their lessons or answers in chalk on a small slate – or chalkboard. The slate could easily be wiped clean and ready for another use. Since the mid 1800’s the expression has been used figuratively to describe a fresh start, a new beginning without old baggage, or the act of wiping out old offences or debts.

That is a practical picture of today’s verse. The entire record of everything – unintended or unimagined – that ever was done by you that was unworthy and unholy is wiped clean when you invite Jesus into your life as Savior. See John 3:16-17 NKJV. God’s forgiveness gives you a clean slate – a new, and fresh start. I love the Apostle Paul’s words to the Corinthian Christians, “This means that anyone who belongs to Christ has become a new person. The old life is gone; a new life has begun! And all of this is a gift from God, who brought us back to Himself through Christ . . for God was in Christ . . no longer counting people’s sins against them.” 2 Corinthians 5:17-19 NLT.

Think of how wonderful that is. All the things that you cannot forget that you have done, let alone forgive yourself for ever doing, have been erased forever – once and for all – by the sacrifice of Jesus, God’s Son on a cross. The slate has been wiped clean; you are given a fresh start. A redemption that you could never have purchased yourself is freely afforded you in salvation.

A friend of mine has said this, “At the cross, God set a price on the value of your soul so high that He could not be outbid.” That unequalled price was the death of His Son taking your place. See 2 Corinthians 5:21 NIV. Some years ago a chorus was written that included these lines, “I owed a debt I could not pay; He paid a debt He did not owe.”

That’s why you cannot save yourself. Never could, never will. The Bible asks a rhetorical question whose answer is obvious and certain, “Who will bring any charge against those whom God has chosen? It is God who justifies! Who is he that condemns?” Romans 8:33-34 NIV. There is no accuser left standing for the truly redeemed. Here’s Paul’s description of your clean slate, “Think of it! All sins forgiven, the slate wiped clean, that old arrest warrant canceled and nailed to Christ’s cross. He stripped all the spiritual tyrants in the universe of their sham authority and marched them naked through the streets.” Colossians 2:14-15 The Message.

My prayer for you today is: live in freedom from sins past, present, or future. Galatians 5:1 NIV.