“Go to the fountain. What is the fountain of all cleanness? The blood of Christ. Revelation 1:5 tells us: ‘Unto Him that loved us, and washed us from our sins in His blood.’ There is the first thing, begin with faith. It is the blood of Jesus Christ that must wash me from sin.
Thou must not go like a moral man, to labour by multitude of acts to get a new habit; but thou must work from another principle: all this cleansing must come from the blood of Jesus Christ.
And how may I apply this? By faith. So thou must go every morning, and present thy soul before the Lord, and look on Him crucified, and say, ‘Lord, Thou didst shed Thy blood to cleanse my soul from the spots of sin.’
Have faith, rinse thy soul, as it were, in the blood of this immaculate Lamb. Apply the blood of Jesus Christ not only for justification to free Thee from the guilt of sin, but let faith work, as it may be applied for sanctification, to wash away the spots and pollutions of sin.
This is certainly the most effectual means that can be imagined. Go to the well-head. Look to that main and principal beginning, like a Christian, and not like a moral man. Even though thou art polluted and defiled, yet the blood of the Lord Jesus will purge thee from all sin, spots as well as guilt.
‘For if the blood of bulls and of goats, and the ashes of a heifer sprinkling the unclean, sanctifieth to the purifying of the flesh: How much more shall the blood of Christ, who through the eternal Spirit offered himself without spot to God, purge your conscience from dead works to serve the living God?’ (Hebrews 9:13-14)
Mark that. You talk of a purgatory: there is the purgatory. That true purgatory is the fountain that is laid open for the house of Judah to wash in: serving not only for expiation of thy sin, that it shall not be laid to thy charge, but it serves to purge thy conscience from dead works to serve the living God. It is as effectual for sanctification, being applied by faith, as it for justification.
Therefore, as I may speak with reverence, make thy breakfast, as I may say, every morning, of the flesh and blood of Jesus Christ, and this will give thee more life, more ability, and strength, the multiplying and continual repetition every day of the act of faith, laying hold on Christ’s body broken, His blood shed. It is a most effectual means. Try it and you shall find the experience of it.”
–Richard Sibbes, “The Pattern of Purity,” in The Works of Richard Sibbes, Ed. Alexander Grosart (Edinburgh: Banner of Truth, Repr. 2001), 7:512-513.