Can you think of a time when you were really dirty? Did you get clean?
Every once in a while the Bible give us a look into heaven. One of those heavenly moments takes place in the book of Zechariah. Can you find Zechariah in your Bible?
Zechariah the prophet has a vision of heaven. He is allowed to see a truly amazing scene unfold in front of God. Here’s a little bit of the picture. See if you can tell what is happening here in Zechariah 3:
Zechariah 3:1-5. Then [the angel] showed me Joshua the high priest standing before the angel of the Lord, and Satan standing at his right hand to accuse him. 2 And the Lord said to Satan, “The Lord rebuke you, O Satan.
3 Now Joshua was standing before the angel, clothed with filthy garments. 4 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.” 5 And I said, “Let them put a clean turban on his head.” So they put a clean turban on his head and clothed him with garments. And the angel of the Lord was standing by.
What and who does Zechariah see?
- The Lord – this is God seated on the throne of heaven.
- Joshua – Joshua is the High Priest of Israel. He’s sort of like the pastor of a really big church. He is supposed to be pure, and clean, and holy as he stands up for the people before God. But Joshua’s priest clothes are covered in “filth” (poop). Uh oh. That’s not good.
- Satan – Satan is the fallen powerful angel who opposes God and all who love God. He is pointing out Joshua’s poopy clothes to God and accusing him of being a big sinner (which he was because we are all big sinners).
- The angel – he is the one showing Zechariah around.
- The Angel of the Lord – this is another name for Jesus in the Old Testament.
You and I can’t see what is happening in heaven when we sin, but trust me something is happening. Just like with Joshua the High Priest and his filthy clothes, we also do bad things and wear “filthy clothes” in front of God. And, trust me, Satan is ready to point out every little bad thing we do to God.
But God has rebuked Satan – he has shut him up. And the Angel of the Lord, Jesus, stands in front of God speaking for us. Jesus is our even better High Priest. Better than Joshua because he never sinned. And now, Jesus looks at our filthy clothes, our sin, and says, “Behold, I have taken your iniquity away from you, and I will clothe you with pure vestments (clothes).”
But when we’ve trusted in Jesus and his death for us on the cross we stand clean before God, not filthy. In fact, we can never be accused by Satan again. Jesus has given us a clean heart and covered us with his own clean life, like putting on new clothes. We are forgiven and we are clean. And that is good news!
Because of Jesus we will never be seen as dirty and guilty by God again.
With Jesus we can admit our mistakes and sins knowing that God doesn’t count them against us anymore.
DO SOMETHING TOGETHER
Read/Listen to the children’s book classic Harry the Dirty Dog. Like Harry all our “tricks” won’t make us better. We need to be cleansed by Jesus.
You have made me clean and taken away all my sins. Thank you!
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