By Elizabeth Prata
Do you enjoy the verses that talk about the robe? I do. Here are a few.
After this I looked, and behold, a great multitude that no one could number, from every nation, from all tribes and peoples and languages, standing before the throne and before the Lamb, clothed in white robes, with palm branches in their hands, (Revelation 7:9)
Then they were each given a white robe and told to rest a little longer, until the number of their fellow servants and their brothers should be complete, who were to be killed as they themselves had been. (Revelation 6:11).
Now Joshua was standing before the angel, clothed with filthy garments. And the angel said to those who were standing before him, “Remove the filthy garments from him.” And to him he said, “Behold, I have taken your iniquity away from you, and I will clothe you with pure vestments.” (Zechariah 3:3-4).
I will greatly rejoice in the Lord; my soul shall exult in my God, for he has clothed me with the garments of salvation; he has covered me with the robe of righteousness, as a bridegroom decks himself like a priest with a beautiful headdress, and as a bride adorns herself with her jewels. (Isaiah 61:10)
One of the father’s gifts to the prodigal son was a robe-
But the father said to his servants, ‘Bring quickly the best robe, and put it on him, and put a ring on his hand, and shoes on his feet. (Luke 15:22)
What is the symbolism of a robe? Of course, not every time a robe was mentioned it’s a symbol. David actually cut a section of sleeping King Saul’s actual robe. A woman actually touched the hem of Jesus’s actual robe. Robes were a garment worn as an outer clothing against the inner robe. It was worn not by everyone but by priests, prophets, kings. Some adorned their robes with purple, the kingly color. Remember when Jesus warned the people to watch out for the scribes who lengthened their robes. (Luke 20:46).
But the robe is also a symbol. Of the verse in Revelation 7, Spurgeon asked
I. WHAT DID THESE WHITE ROBES MEAN?
1. The white robes show the immaculate purity of their character. White signifies perfection; it is not so much a colour as the harmonious union and blending of all the hues, colours, and beauties of light. In the characters of just men made perfect we have the combination of all virtues, the balancing of all excellences, a display of all the beauties of grace. Are they not like their Lord, and is He not all beauties in one?
2. By “white robes we also understand the fitness of their souls for the service to which they are appointed; they were chosen before all worlds to be kings and priests unto God, but a priest might not stand before the Lord to minister until he had put on his appointed linen garments; and therefore the souls which have been taken up to heaven are represented in white robes to show that they are completely fitted for that Divine service to which they were ordained of old, to which the Spirit of God called them while they were here, and in which Jesus Christ leads the way, being a Priest for ever at their head.
Here is a verse that shows us in truth the greatest robe of all:
In the year that King Uzziah died I saw the Lord sitting upon a throne, high and lifted up; and the train of his robe filled the temple. (Isaiah 6:1)
And why would His robe not fill the throne room! The universe is filled with His glory! He is faithful and true, His garments white and pure, He is the most beauteous of all. His robe is the robe of the King of KING and Lord of LORDS! What a gracious and wonderful gift He gives us, to partake in His righteousness. Spurgeon said in his sermon The Wedding Garment of the Prodigal Son,
The robe also met his condition. He was in rags, therefore, “Bring forth the best robe and put it on him,” and you shall see no more of his rags. It was fit that he should be thus arrayed, in token of his restoration. He who is re-endowed with the privileges of a son should not be dressed in sordid clothes, but wear raiment suitable to his station.
Moreover, as a festival was about to begin, he ought to wear a festive garment. It would not be seemly for him to feast and be merry in his rags. Put the best robe on him that he may be ready to take his place at the banquet. So, when the penitent comes to God, he is not only covered, as to the past, by the Righteousness of Christ, but he is prepared for the future blessedness which is reserved for the pardoned ones. Yes, he is fitted to begin the rejoicing at once!
Praise the Lord for our robes!
|Painting, Robe of Righteousness, by Lars Justinen|