This morning, the Lord led me to zero in on Zechariah 3, specifically verses 3-4, and then I broadened to the whole chapter and looked at a few different versions to get a deeper understanding…
Zechariah 3:4 (NIV) The angel said to those who were standing before him, “Take off his filthy clothes.” Then he said to Joshua, “See, I have taken away your sin, and I will put fine garments on you.”
Zechariah 3:4 (CSB) So He spoke to those standing before Him, “Take off his filthy clothes!” Then He said to him, “See, I have removed your guilt from you, and I will clothe you with splendid robes.“
Zechariah 3:4 (NCV) The angel said to those standing in front of him, “Take off those dirty clothes.” Then the angel said to Joshua, “Look, I have taken away your sin from you, and I am giving you beautiful, fine clothes.”
Here’s the New King James Version of verses 1-5:
1 Then he showed me Joshua the high priest standing before the Angel of the Lord, and Satan standing at his right hand to oppose him. 2 And the Lord said to Satan, “The Lord rebuke you, Satan! The Lord who has chosen Jerusalem rebuke you! Is this not a brand plucked from the fire?” 3 Now Joshua was clothed with filthy garments, and was standing before the Angel. 4 Then He answered and spoke to those who stood before Him, saying, “Take away the filthy garments from him.” And to him He said, “See, I have removed your iniquity from you, and I will clothe you with rich robes.” 5 And I said, “Let them put a clean turban on his head.” So they put a clean turban on his head, and they put the clothes on him. And the Angel of the Lord stood by.
Take a look at verses 6-10 in the Message Version:
6 God’s Angel then charged Joshua, 7 “Orders from God-of-the-Angel-Armies: ‘If you live the way I tell you and remain obedient in my service, then you’ll make the decisions around here and oversee my affairs. And all my attendants standing here will be at your service. 8 “‘Careful, High Priest Joshua – both you and your friends sitting here with you, for your friends are in on this, too! Here’s what I’m doing next: I’m introducing my servant Branch. 9 And note this: This stone that I’m placing before Joshua, a single stone with seven eyes’ – Decree of God-of-the-Angel-Armies – ‘I’ll engrave with these words: “I’ll strip this land of its filthy sin, all at once, in a single day.” 10 “‘At that time, everyone will get along with one another, with friendly visits across the fence, friendly visits on one another’s porches.'”
Here is the question I am led to…
“What am I wearing?”
Am I wearing my old garments, my sinful nature? Is the enemy accusing me and reminding me of my sin, am I clothed in shame? Am I clothed in filth? Have I chosen this clothing for myself? Have I chosen to remain in it?
The bible says that in Christ, I am clothed in righteousness. I am given a new set of beautiful clothes. Why would I want to remain in my old, filthy ones?
In Galatians 3:26-27 Paul writes, “So in Christ Jesus you are all children of God through faith, for all of you who were baptized into Christ have clothed yourselves with Christ.“
We are clothed in Christ. Why would we select a set of old, filthy clothes for the day when we have been given brand new, clean, beautiful clothing?
“Rather, clothe yourselves with the Lord Jesus Christ, and do not think about how to gratify the desires of the flesh.” – Romans 13:14
“Therefore, as God’s chosen people, holy and dearly loved, clothe yourselves with compassion, kindness, humility, gentleness and patience.” – Colossians 3:12
Father, thank You for this new set of clothes You have given us in Christ. I pray that You’ll help us to never want to put on our old, dirty, torn and tattered clothing. Help us to remember that we have been given a beautiful set of clothes — that we don’t need our old rags anymore. We can leave our old clothing behind.
“I am overwhelmed with joy in the LORD my God! For he has dressed me with the clothing of salvation and draped me in a robe of righteousness. I am like a bridegroom dressed for his wedding or a bride with her jewels.” – Isaiah 61:10