اللهم باعد بيني وبين خطاياي كما باعدت بين المشرق والمغرب، اللهم نقني من خطاياي كما ينقى الثوب الأبيض من الدنس اللهم اغسلني من خطاياي بالماء والثلج والبرد
[O Allaah, set me apart from my sins just as you have set apart the East from the West, O Allaah purify me of my sins as a white garment is purified of dirt, O Allaah cleanse me of my sins with snow, water and hail.”
Shaykh Muhammad bin Saalih Al Uthaymeen (Allaah have mercy upon him) said:
“You may say water no doubt purifies, but what is well known is that hot water is more potent in cleansing and removing dirt, since hot water cleanses more than cold water. When we wash a garment with soap we warm the water, so why did he say,
“with water and snow and hail”?
We say, the scholars said, because he is asking Allaah to purify him from sins, he says,
“cleanse me from sins”, and not from physical dirt. Sins and wrongdoings carry the punishment of the Fire, and the Fire is hot, and what is suitable to remove something by its opposing force. Therefore, that which suits hot fire is water, snow and hail. So it is suitable that the removal of sins is with something cold so that the effect of punishment is removed altogether, and that is why he said, “with water and snow and hail”, this is the wisdom.
[Taken from the excellent book- The Prophet’s Prayer Described by Shaykh Muhammad bin Saalih Al Uthaymeen رحمه الله, translated by Abu Muaadh Taqweem Aslam حفظه الله, a must have book]