Thursday, October 25, 2007

Clothed in Righteousness

Failure is inevitable this side of heaven, but whether you stand again to take a hold of the promises of God rests on the condition of your mind, the words that you speak and the clothes that you wear.
You could say that after 40 years in the desert, the people of Israel had become conditioned not only to failure but to the consequences of it. We know that it was the attitude of their mind and the words of their mouth that hindered them from entering into the promises of God many years before (Numbers 14:26-34). Their minds said, we can't take them - their too big, and their mouths simply echoed their unbelief. We know that all of the 12 spies, excluding Joshua & Caleb, died in the desert, and they took a whole generation with them - because the words of their mouth and the pattern of their mind were carnal.
We know that Joshua is a prophetic book. We know that the story of Joshua leading his people into the promised land is a foreshadow of Chirst ushering us into the Kingdom of God (in fact we know that the name Jeshua or Jesus comes from the name Joshua). That's why the new covenant instructs us to renew the condition of our mind (Romans 12:1), and to guard closely the use of our tongue (book of James).
So Joshua is about to lead his people into the promised land (Joshua 1). I began to wonder, what was the condition of their mind? Did even joshua have doubts? Had they become content with the familiararity of living on the current side of the Jordan river? I wondered what came out of Joshua's mouth on behalf of his people just before God responded, again saying, 'Have I not commanded you? Be strong and courageous. Do not be terrified; do not be discouraged, for the LORD your God will be with you wherever you go." (Joshua 1:9)
When the time came, they had to physically step into the Jordan river in order to cross over, but surely their success was determined not by the fact that they took a physical step, but because God was with them, 'Have I not commanded you? Be strong and courageous. Do not be terrified; do not be discouraged, for the LORD your God will be with you wherever you go." (Joshua 1:9)

'Then he showed me Joshua the high priest standing before the angel of the LORD, and Satan standing at his right side to accuse him. The LORD said to Satan, "The LORD rebuke you, Satan! The LORD, who has chosen Jerusalem, rebuke you! Is not this man a burning stick snatched from the fire?" Now Joshua was dressed in filthy clothes as he stood before the angel. 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 rich garments on you." Then I said, "Put a clean turban on his head." So they put a clean turban on his head and clothed him, while the angel of the LORD stood by. The angel of the LORD gave this charge to Joshua: "This is what the LORD Almighty says: 'If you will walk in my ways and keep my requirements, then you will govern my house and have charge of my courts, and I will give you a place among these standing here. " 'Listen, O high priest Joshua and your associates seated before you, who are men symbolic of things to come: I am going to bring my servant, the Branch. See, the stone I have set in front of Joshua! There are seven eyes on that one stone, and I will engrave an inscription on it,' says the LORD Almighty, 'and I will remove the sin of this land in a single day. " 'In that day each of you will invite his neighbor to sit under his vine and fig tree,' declares the LORD Almighty."'(Zechariah 3)

To have Christ with us is to be clothed in his Righteousness.
'You were taught, with regard to your former way of life, to put off your old self, which is being corrupted by its deceitful desires; to be made new in the attitude of your minds; and to put on the new self, created to be like God in true righteousness and holiness.' (Ephesians 4:22-24)

'...put on the new self, which is being renewed in knowledge in the image of its Creator.' (Colossians 3:9-10)

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