Another reward that the Lord gives to the overcoming saints is “white robes.” What are these white robes and why do they have so much eternal value? Doesn’t everyone get to wear white in heaven?
The white robes symbolise the righteousness of the saints. Every child of God is called a saint which means ‘a most holy one’. Sometimes I wish they had used the words most holy one rather than saint in the Bible. The word saint does paint a picture of a person who is morally clean and lives a holy life but even that does not paint the same image as “a most holy one.” But you are a heavenly being that God calls His most holy one. From an earthly perspective this is hard to conceptualise but just because we cannot conceptualise the truth does not change the truth.
I went to look at the word righteous. I had always assumed (because that’s what I had been told) that righteousness means to be in right standing with God. What does that mean? Isn’t it funny how we have all these Christian sayings that we think are so awesome but when we stop to think about them, we have no idea about what they mean? Anyway, I could not find any meaning of righteousness that meant right standing with God, so I am going to chuck that one out the window.
There are two definitions that I found for the word righteous. The first is equity. Really! That’s even worse than right standing, and the other is justification.
Equity means to receive justice according to natural law or right, specifically to be set free from bias or favouritism. Here we can see that equity has to do with justice and justice has to do with some or other law in your favour.
Another definition for equity is financial, but righteousness is not money so that definition is not applicable. Thirdly equity means a body of legal doctrines and rules developed to enlarge, supplement, or override a narrow rigid system of law. Now this one got my attention.
Righteousness has to do with law. The law of righteousness is the foundation of God’s kingdom and it rules over every other law. The law of righteousness, which comes from the courts of heaven, rules over or is a higher law than those of the earth. The earthly law would refer to the law of Moses, which is a narrow and rigid system. The law of Moses is also called the law of sin and death, which you only find in this world and not in heaven. So, we now know that righteousness is from heaven. How does that apply to us who are still here on earth?
For God made the only one who did not know sin to become sin for us, so that we who did not know righteousness might become the righteousness of God through our union with Him. (2 Cor 5:21 TPT)
Please remember we are dealing with legal things that come from the throne of God’s justice and not earthly things which come from our emotions and wrong thinking arising from the Law of Sin and Death. Jesus came to earth with a mission and that was to change the legal laws that had been established in heaven because of the fall of Adam, Eve, and the devil. Because of Adam’s sin we were born into the law of sin and death. Jesus was about to change all that. And He did it through His death and resurrection.
In our earthly legal systems, there is a law that states you cannot pay for the same crime twice. If someone has gone to jail for a crime that they did not commit and pay the sentence in full, the person that committed the crime cannot be tried for it or sentenced for it afterwards. The debt has been paid. This is what Jesus did. He took on our crimes, called sin, and went to jail (hell) for us. Once the sentence was over, He was released from the grave, rose from the dead, took His blood and cleansed the heavens – changed the laws of heaven.
Now, from God’s perspective your sins, no matter what they are, have already been paid for by His Son. Believe me, the cross, the blood, His death and resurrection, are far greater than any sin you could dream of committing. He did this of His own free will – while you were merrily committing all the sin you wanted too. This is amazing! What love.
Your debt of sin has been paid once and for all. You are eternally forgiven. Righteousness is your eternal forgiveness. Death has no hold over you – IF – you choose to accept His gracious gift of righteousness.
This is His lesson to the saints in Sardis. It was not their good works that guaranteed them salvation, in fact many of them were still dead in their trespasses and sins, thinking that if they were good persons, they would be guaranteed their spot in heaven. But this was not the case. They needed to come to Him and receive their robes of righteousness. This robe gives you access to heaven and anyone that wears this robe needs never to fear death because they wear the garments of heaven.
To be continued …
Lots of love
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