Ephesians 5:26 That he might sanctify and cleanse it with the washing of water by the word,
The Scriptures are designed for sanctifying. The sanctification is accomplished by our Lord Jesus Christ by means of the cleansing with the washing of water by the word. This is not a reference to water baptism. Water baptism is indeed commanded by Christ in Matthew 28:19, and that command has not been revoked anywhere in subsequent revelation recorded in the New Testament. The baptism mentioned here is real baptism accomplished by the Holy Spirit through the Word of God found in our day only in the Bible itself.
For those who desire to DIG DEEPER into this subject:
(1) Consult the cross references given in Nelson’s Cross Reference Guide to the Bible on page 1367 for Ephesians 5:26.
(2) Consult the cross references given in The New Treasury of Scripture Knowledge on page 1387 or in Logos 5 Bible software for Ephesians 5:26.
(3) Lacking access to those two resources, consult the cross references for this passage as I have developed them as given below:
Ephesians 5:26. That he. *Jn 17:17-19. +*Ac 26:18. *1 Cor 6:11. *Titus 2:14. **He 9:14. *He 10:10. *1 P 1:2. Jude 1:1. might sanctify. or, might make her holy (LNT). Gr. hagiazō [(S#37g), to make holy (L-N 88.26): Mt 6:9g (Hallowed). Mt 23:17g, 19g. Lk 11:2g. Jn 10:36g. **Jn 17:17g, 19g. *Ac 20:32g. *Ac 26:18g. Ro 15:16g. 1 Cor 1:2g. *1 Cor 6:11g. *1 Cor 7:14g. 1 Tim 4:5g. 2 Tim 2:21g. He 2:11g. 9:13g. *He 10:10g, 14g, 29g. 13:12g. *1 P 3:15g. * Jude 1:1 g. Re 22:11g (be holy)]. Might make her holy translates hagiasē, an aorist active subjunctive. When we have a work of the Holy Spirit in mind, to make holy is a transformational experience, not a mere setting apart as under the Law (LNT, fn x). 2 Ch 29:5. Ezk 37:28. Jn 17:19. 1 Cor 1:2, 30. +*1 Th 4:3. He 10:14. 12:10. 13:12. and cleanse. or, having cleansed. Gr. katharizō (S#2511g, Mt 8:2). Having cleansed translates katharisas, to cleanse, i.e., the removal of impurities from whatever is cleansed. The Holy Spirit cleanses the believer from the fallen nature in Adam: Adamic nature, carnality, sin nature, in which we were conceived (Ps 51:5; Compare Ep 1:4, 7, 13 and notes). It is significant to note that when an aspect of salvation is in mind, katharizō (S#2511g, Mt 8:2) is always used of the cleansing work of the believer; when the sinner is saved from sin, dikaioō (S#1344g, Ro 8:30) is always used (LNT, fn y). Le 14:7. 16:30. Nu 19:19. Ezk 36:25. 37:23. Ml 3:3. Jn 2:6n. Titus 2:14g (purify). +2 P 1:9. *1 J 1:7, **1 J 1:9. with the washing. or, by the laver. Gr. loutron, *S#3067g, only here and Titus 3:5g. FS22M. The laver is put for Christ’s death and its results. Compare Nu 19:9, 17. Has nothing to do with baptism (CB). Washing of water is a picture, illustration, of the cleansing work of the Holy Spirit, and has nothing to do with ceremonial water baptism. The washing is real, transformational, and life-giving; this is water of eternal life (Compare Jn 4:10; 7:38, 39) [LNT, fn z]. =Ex 29:4. =Ex 30:18. Le 8:6. **Nu 19:9, 17. 2 K 5:13, 14n. +*Ps 51:7. Ezk 16:9. *Ezk 36:25. Zc 13:1. *Jn 3:5. 13:5, 8, 10. +*Ac 22:16. +*1 Cor 6:11. *Titus 3:5-7. +*He 10:22. *1 P 3:21. *1 J 5:6. Re 7:14. of water. Nu 31:23. Dt 23:11. Jn 19:34. 1 P 3:20. by the word. Gr. rhēma (S#4487g), Mk 9:32n. With a rhema or spoken word, is distinct from the written word. Rhema, the spoken word, is a reference to God’s intention, purpose, or promise (compare Jl 2:28; Ezk 36:26, 27). The Holy Spirit makes the believer holy as in wholly (1 Th 5:23, 24), and enables us to live accordingly (LNT, fn a). Ep 6:17. **Ps 119:9. *+Jn 15:3. 17:17. +Ro 10:8, 9. He 6:5. **He 11:3n. *James 1:18. *1 P 1:22, 23.