I stood shivering and gazing at my Co-Laborer as He prepared my new ensemble. My grave clothes had long been removed and soon I would be given a new assignment. His oil and light warmed me as I watched.
Wonder what He has in store for me? Maybe my shoes will be like Christian Louboutin pumps or my cloak like Dior, I thought as I anticipated. I could hardly contain myself.
“It won’t be much longer,” He said one day, as I paced around my bedroom. This wait wasn’t unpleasant. The air was clear and the atmosphere was peaceful, like a warm summer morning.
The day was uneventful when He handed me my new raiment. The vestment was practical; the shoes were sensible. I reached for them, gladly, knowing any wardrobe He selected for me was blessed.
I held out the robe, to get a better look. It was a long purple linen robe, with a tunic collar. It had a crocodile-skinned vest sewn onto it.
Proverbs 2:7 says, He layeth up sound wisdom for the righteous: he is a buckler to them that walk uprightly.
There are so many benefits to walking in His righteousness. Proverbs 2 tells us that He layeth up sound wisdom for us. Sound wisdom is a wisdom that lifts us up; it’s aid and support. It’s the keys to our success. He becomes a buckler to us. The Hebrew word for buckler is magen. It means protector or in a figurative sense, it means the scaly hide of a crocodile.
As I looked over my new outfit, I thought about how I had realized, how my Co-Laborer had toughened me during the days of my adversities. This vest would come in handy as I continued to face the strife of men and the fiery darts of the enemy.
Zechariah 3:1-4 says: And he showed me Joshua the high priest standing before the angel of the Lord, and Satan standing at this right hand to resist him. And the Lord said unto Satan, The Lord rebuke thee, O Satan; even the Lord that hath chosen Jerusalem rebuke thee: is not this a brand plucked out of the fire? Now Joshua was clothed with filthy garments, and stood before the angel. And he answered and spake unto those that stood before him saying, Take away the filthy garments from him. And unto him he said, Behold, I have caused thine iniquity to pass from thee and I will clothe thee with change of raiment.
Zechariah, whose name means “God remembers,” was one of three prophets (Haggai and Malachi were the other two) who ministered to the Jewish people who were exiled but were returning to Jerusalem.
He encouraged the people with visions of how their enemies would be punished, the restoration they would receive, and visions regarding the Messiah.
In Chapter 3, he is telling the people he saw a heavenly meeting, where Joshua, the high priest, was being accused by Satan as Joshua stood before the Angel of the Lord.
Joshua, who represented the priesthood and the nation, was in active ministerial duty but had on a filthy garment.
The first thing the Lord did was rebuke Satan and remind him that He had chosen Jerusalem and that Joshua was a “brand pluck out of the fire.” A brand was a branch that was being burned; before it could be totally consumed, it would be snatch from the flames.
The priesthood had suffered greatly and the Lord did not judge them according to their sin but according to His righteousness. He took Joshua’s filthy, excrement-soaked clothing and gave him a holy robe. The robe was symbolic of the Lord’s righteousness and holiness.
I could relate to this passage of scripture.
All the mocking and external trials could not stop me; however, there was one foe that could flatline me: my flesh. During my dark trials, there were attitudes and behaviors that came forth that were not pleasing to God.
Make no mistake about it; during desolate times, your iniquities will revisit you.
Satan took advantage of this, bombarding me and telling me I had missed my season in God.
The ridicule from the enemy felt overwhelming at times, and deep depression would follow, until the day the Lord caused me to come across this chapter.
These verses released me from Satan’s grip. Glory!
I could deal with the external tribulations and persecution I was experiencing. I knew to run right to God with my troubles. However, when it came to my internal struggles, I was hesitant.
Satan would always stand on my right hand (the place of favor) between me and the Lord.
Prophets are always harder on themselves than they should be. God did not condemn me as Satan accused; instead He showed me with His love and grace.
In that season, He manifested Himself to me as Father. I always thought I knew Him as Father, but in those days, we hugged tighter.
Turning my back to Him, my Co-Laborer slipped on my new robe, fastening it tightly around my neck. I sat down beside Him as He placed my brown leather sandals on my feet. He also sat a cap upon my head. It matched the vest.
“You need the helmet of salvation,” He said, securing the cap. We sat side by side, discussing how the helmet would protect my thoughts and hopes.
As we had moments of silence, I thought about my iniquities. I wondered how I would handle them if when they visited again.
I felt so unworthy. I didn’t deserve to be seated in this heavenly place with Him.
He always knew my thoughts. “I had to allow you to experience that. I had to show you who you’d become if you stepped outside of Me,” He said, stroking my chin.
We discussed my charge. There were many things He told me I would do for the kingdom. Things I never imagined. I smiled at Him knowing I could not accomplish any of it without His help.
I loved the thought of my Co-Laborer and I working even closer together.
The conversation turned somber as He discussed death. I winced as the season was still fresh in my mind.
Turning to 2 Corinthians 4:10-12, He taught me: Always bearing about in the body the dying of the Lord Jesus, that the life also of Jesus might be made manifest in our body. For we which live are always delivered unto death for Jesus’ sake, that the life also of Jesus might be made manifest in our mortal flesh. So then death worketh in us but life in you.
This concludes the series, From Resurrection to Renaissance. Has the series been a blessing to you? What did you learn? Please leave a comment here and let me know. Be sure to view the blog this coming Monday as I give you an update on some of the people mentioned in the series!