Tuesday, October 16, 2012

The Robe Generation

We are called to be the Robe Generation. Listen to me. You are wearing a robe. This robe is one of righteousness. I said this robe is one of righteousness. It gleams like a bride adorned in jewels on her wedding day (Isaiah 61:10). I said it gleams like a bride adorned in jewels on her wedding day. It is white, bright, and brilliant (Revelation 7:9). In fact, it is the exact same white that was used to describe Jesus’ own garment when he had transfigured before Peter, James, and John on the mountain (Matthew 17:2). Why? Why are we worthy of having the same purely colored garment as the Savior of the World? Because this righteousness that you, you who have come out of great tribulation, this righteousness that you now wear is in the form of a magnificent robe that has been washed in the blood of Jesus Himself; by the washing of regeneration and renewal of the Holy Spirit (Revelation 7:14) (Titus 3:5). The blood that you cried out for when you shouted, “Crucify Him! Crucify Him!” The blood that you smiled at as it dripped down the wood of the cross - the blood of the lamb. This very blood that was shed from an innocent and flawless Man for your sake now makes you righteous and holy. Jesus is the righteousness of God (2 Corinthians 5:21). And we wear this same righteousness. Let that sink in. You are a sibling of Righteousness Himself (Matthew 12:48 – 50). You are a chosen friend of the Most High God who will give you whatever you ask in His name because His love for you never fails (John 15:16) (1 Corinthians 13:8). He is Love Himself, and He can’t go against His nature. Guess what? People can no longer ignore this blinding robe that He has graciously blanketed over you, for it illuminates the room. Darkness flees at the sight of it. For the blinding light displaces any surrounding darkness – it overcomes and defeats, crushes and deletes. This robe, however, will bring forth mockery; people will despise you for it. Why? Because this very robe that covers you, is the robe that the soldiers who drove the nails into Jesus’ hands and feet tried to defile in mockery (Mark 15:17). They clothed Jesus in a tattered purple robe in way to say, “Where is your kingdom, oh great King?” for people of royalty wear robes. I said people of royalty wear robes! Jesus took their, your, mockery and cleansed and refined and made new the defiled, sin-ridden robe that was placed on his body by you, the solider who nailed him to the cross, who caused Him to die. He now covers you with the very garment you used to spit in his face. You are now the royalty in the robe, oh princes and princesses of Christ the King of Kings, for you are a son or daughter of the Great I Am (Exodus 3:14) (Romans 8:17) (John 1:12). You share in the glory of God. While you cry and weep saying, “Father, I have sinned against heaven and against you I am no longer worthy to be called your child.” He is hugging you, kissing you, and graciously thrusting upon you the very best robe that He has (Luke 15:21-22). For after a bath, one needs a robe; and you have been doused in the Living Water, completely cleansed and cleaned, and now, as the Living Water flows out of you to drench those around you, you wear a the Robe to keep you safe and warm (John 7:38) (1 John 1:7). You are a crown of beauty in the Hand of the Lord and the nations will see the righteousness that bursts forth from this glimmering robe that you wear (Isaiah 62:2-3). But listen here. You weren’t always this way. “All of us have become like one who is unclean, and all our righteous acts are like filthy rags; we all shrivel up like a leaf, and like the wind our sins sweep us away.” (Isaiah 64:6) You stood before God in filthy clothes. And He said to his angels, “Take off this child’s filthy clothes.” Then He looked at you, once again, as you were bare before him with no place to hide, and he put rich garments on you and clothed you so you would now shine brilliantly of and like Him (Zechariah 3:3-5). You now, by the grace of God, have become like a tree planted by streams of water, whose leaves never wither; whatever you do prospers into abundant and everlasting fruit, for you are fused to vine (Psalm 1:3) (John 15:5). What does all this sound like? Freedom. The Loving Father wants you to know tonight that you have been set free from the law of sin and death (Romans 8:2); you are no longer a slave to the reign of sin for the God that holds you in the palm of His hand reigns over all the universe and beyond (Romans 6:6) (Psalm 95:4) (Psalm 37:24). You will not be condemned by God for you have been accepted into the Kingdom with a Holy Robe (Romans 8:1) (Romans 15:7). You are a saint (1 Corinthians 1:2) (Ephesians 1:1) (Philippians 1:1)(Colossians 1:2). Within the robe, you are a temple of the Holy Spirit who joyfully dwells inside of you (1 Corinthians 6:19). I said the Holy Spirit, a member of the Triune God, has taken residence inside of you. Put one hand on your heart and the other on your head. You are touching the house of Comforter, Holy Spirit (John 14:26). The hand on your head is now feeling a softened mind, for Christ has removed your hardened head when making you into a new creature (2 Corinthians 3:14) (2 Corinthians 5:17). I said you are a new creature through Christ. You are chosen, holy, and blameless, just as your robe suggests (Ephesians 1:4) You have been redeemed and forgiven – blessed with every spiritual blessing known in the heavenly places (Ephesians 1:3) (Ephesians 1:7). You have been sealed and made alive (Ephesians 1:13) (Ephesians 2:4-5). And with this royal robe, you now have been brought near to God to partake of His promise as you sit in the heavenly places with Christ (Ephesians 2:6) (Ephesians 2:13) (Ephesians 3:6). You have been raised up as a citizen in heaven with all the rights and glories that are associated with it (Philippians 3:20) (Colossians 3:1). You have been made complete in Christ (Colossians 2:10). Never again will that pain, heartache, brokenness, sin, hurt, death, or curse have power over you. You have power over it through God’s mighty scepter. Let us not forget the robe that encompasses our bodies, and our commission to bring others into the closet to be clothed with us. Let us plant ourselves beside the Living Water and keep watch for those recently drenched, and beckoning those who are in need of the cleanse. Remember who you are, over what you’ve done. Remember who you’ve become, over where you’ve been. His call to us is one of joy and love; let us answer it. Embrace the robe given to you with a child-like faith and exuberance. You belong here. Always remember: You belong here.

Prayer: God, we ask You to fill us with the knowledge of Your will through all the wisdom and understanding that the Spirit gives, so that we may live a life worthy of You and please You in every way. That we may bear fruit in every good work, grow in the knowledge of You, be strengthened with all power according to Your glorious might so that we may have great endurance and patience, and give joyful thanks to You, oh Mighty Father, who has qualified us to share in the inheritance of Your holy people in the kingdom of light. For You have rescued us from the dominion of darkness and brought us into the kingdom of the Son You love, in whom we humbly have redemption, the forgiveness of sins. (Colossians 1:9–14) I pray that out of Your glorious riches You may strengthen us with power through Your Spirit in our inner being, so that Christ may dwell in our hearts through faith. And I pray that we, being rooted and established in love, may have power, together with all the saints, to grasp how wide and long and high and deep is the love of Christ, and to know this love that surpasses knowledge – that we may be filled to the measure of all the fullness of You, oh God. Now to You who is able to do immeasurably more than all we ask or imagine, according to You power that is at work within us, to You be glory in the church and in Christ Jesus throughout all generation, for ever and ever! Amen (Ephesians 3:16-21)

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