Snow and Scarlet

white-as-snowAs I sit at home today looking out the window at the falling snow (well, okay, it’s almost all sleet, but roll with me here) I started thinking about whether there was snow in the Bible.  When I think of Israel and that area of the world, I think of heat and sand, but it does actually snow there, and snow is mentioned several times in the Bible. I want to share two of those with you today.

First, in Proverbs 31:21, the Bible is talking about the virtuous wife and woman when it says, “When it snows, she has no fear for her household; for all of them are clothed in scarlet.”  Now – I wasn’t sure why wearing red clothes helped someone be safe in the snow (maybe they could be seen more easily?) so I did a little research and found that this “scarlet” referred to a very fine and high quality wool cloth which would preserve warmth.  It was given a scarlet color by how it was made.  So the virtuous woman had no need to fear the winter because she had already made provision for her family.

Of course, the use of the word “scarlet’ also refers biblically to the blood of Jesus Christ.  The Bible tells us that Christians are covered with this blood and it cleanses our sins and makes us righteous before God.  We have no need to fear the difficult or cold times because are covered in this scarlet garment.

But scarlet and snow also make an appearance in a more well-known verse, Isaiah 1:18, which says, “…though your sins be as scarlet, they shall be as white as snow; though they be red like crimson, they shall be as wool.”  God washes our sins (regardless of how stained and bloody we are) and we come out looking white as snow.  One of my favorite things about a nice deep snowfall is how new everything looks under the snowy blanket.  Let’s face it – even the best maintained landscapes look pretty rough in winter until that snow comes and makes everything beautiful and clean.

When Jeana and I were part of a band called Francisco Road, we wrote a song together that points to this verse.  Jeana wrote most of this one, so I can’t take a lot of credit for it, but it is a song from the perspective of a person who needs that fresh start.  A longing to be made right again; to be washed white as snow.  I hope you enjoy it and remember to be safe during the storm.  Wear red if you like.

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