have clean hands

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have clean hands

To be innocent; to be free of any wrongdoing. I swear, I have clean hands—I had nothing to do with that robbery. We kept you in the dark about the deal so you would always have clean hands in case things went wrong.
See also: clean, hand, have
Farlex Dictionary of Idioms. © 2015 Farlex, Inc, all rights reserved.

have clean hands

Fig. to be guiltless. (As if a guilty person would have dirty or bloody hands.) Don't look at me. I have clean hands. The police took him in, but let him go after questioning because he had clean hands.
See also: clean, hand, have
McGraw-Hill Dictionary of American Idioms and Phrasal Verbs. © 2002 by The McGraw-Hill Companies, Inc.

clean hands, have

Be innocent or guiltless, as in John's got clean hands; he had nothing to do with it. It is sometimes worded as one's hands are clean, meaning "one has done nothing wrong," as in Don't look at me-my hands are clean. This metaphor for freedom from wrongdoing dates back to at least 1600.
See also: clean, have
The American Heritage® Dictionary of Idioms by Christine Ammer. Copyright © 2003, 1997 by The Christine Ammer 1992 Trust. Published by Houghton Mifflin Harcourt Publishing Company. All rights reserved.

have clean hands (or keep your hands clean)

be uninvolved and blameless with regard to an immoral act.
See also: clean, hand, have
Farlex Partner Idioms Dictionary © Farlex 2017

have clean ˈhands


your hands are ˈclean

not be responsible for crime, dishonesty, etc: After years of corrupt government, we want politicians with clean hands.
See also: clean, hand, have
Farlex Partner Idioms Dictionary © Farlex 2017
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References in periodicals archive ?
Marylou: We initially joked about never having clean hands throughout the week!
He said that he had refused to approve the summary of Law Ministry before assuming the charge of Law Minister but surprisingly the IO alleged him for not having clean hands in the matter.
Before ordering the final command to sentence Jesus to death, Pilate washed his hands before the multitude, as a sign that he was innocent of the crime, exclaiming, "I am cleansed of the blood of the Son of God." Although it is been said that this was a Pharisee custom to wash away impurity, the phrase of having clean hands has taken on a symbolic meaning after Pilate.
"Thank you for having clean hands, thank you for having a clean heart, thank you for not propping up your image," she says.
Having clean hands remains one of the ways to prevent catching an illness.
"Having water that's safe, having clean hands and safe food, and a system to dispose of waste ...
Anna said: "Raising awareness of having clean hands, for both health care professionals and members of the public, needs constant attention.
"This is all about having clean hands and beating germs - I want to help get that message across."
Also I was far from having clean hands (both a liar and a thief!) and was not in the habit of listening to that inner voice of truth, or God, as I understood it to be.