Not by works of righteousness which we have done, but according to his mercy he saved us, by the washing of regeneration, and renewing of the Holy Ghost (Tit. 3:5 KJV)
Our salvation is indeed an awe-inspiring work of the Holy Spirit. When a man’s heart opens us to receive the Gospel message of Jesus Christ, there are amazing, mind-blowing changes that occur in the inside of that person. Titus 3:5 highlights two such operations of the Spirit: the washing of regeneration and the renewing of the Holy Ghost.
There is a washing of the Spirit that takes place as the spiritual birth occurs inside of us. The sins of the old man had to be dealt with before he is put to rest. The Spirit of God thoroughly washed us, removing any stain, dimple, effect or trace of sin in our lives. Think of a piece of cloth that is dirty, with stains from oil, paint, the oil, etc. When that piece of cloth is thoroughly washed, every trace of the dirt, in all its forms, is completely cleaned, and the original pre-stain state of the cloth restored. That is what happened to the old man after it was washed! God has thoroughly washed you by His Spirit.
The Spirit did more than just wash us. There is a renewal, the new birth that took place. God washed the old of his sins, and then brought forth the new man born with the nature of God.
These are spiritual realities, done by the Spirit in your human spirit. You are not trying to believe to receive them. They occurred the day you received Christ. The Spirit now wants to lead you to see these realities become your experience in the realm of your natural life here and now, lived in the soul and body.
What is the “soap and water” that the Holy Spirit uses to clean us thoroughly? ( John 15:3, Eph. 5:26)
APPLY THE WORD
Your assimilation of the truth above lays the foundation for you to begin the sanctification of the soul. God is not asking you to do something you are not when He commands you to be holy in mind and body. He is simply asking you to work out what has been worked into your spirit!
Thank the Lord for the gift of the sanctification of the Spirit.