Employed by the human development center of a corporation in the Midwest, a woman trains employees in proper dress codes and etiquette.
One day, as she stepped onto the elevator, a man casually dressed in jeans and a golf shirt got on with her.
Thinking of her responsibilities, she scolded, “Dressed a little casually today, aren’t we?”
The man replied, “That’s one benefit of owning the company!” *
In recent decades, there’s been a lot of chatter about workplace dress codes. While some disagree about these codes, clothes do impact how we feel, our confidence level and even how we interact in our relationships. Dress codes can create certain work environments (casual, stuffy, professional, artistic, etc.).
Did you know Christians have a dress code? I’m not talking about the modesty issue here (although that would be a much needed topic for another post), but rather, the special “garment” we’re to wear every day.
I love a passage in Isaiah that talks about how God “decks us out” when we are His own:
“I will greatly rejoice in the Lord; my soul shall exult in my God, for he has clothed me with the garments of salvation; he has covered me with the robe of righteousness….” (Isaiah 61:10a).
If you are a biblical Christian, you are draped in a robe of righteousness, and you can rejoice in that garment of praise! At one time, you would not submit to the righteousness of God, and kept trying to establish your own righteousness (Romans 10:3-4). But all your good works were like filthy garments before the Lord (Isaiah 64:6a).
But in Christ, that all changed. There was a great exchange!
“God made him who had no sin (Jesus) to be sin for us, so that in him we might become the righteousness of God” (2 Corinthians 5:21, ESV)
“But it is from Him that you are in Christ Jesus, who became to us wisdom from God [revealing His plan of salvation], and righteousness [making us acceptable to God], and sanctification [making us holy and setting us apart for God], and redemption [providing our ransom from the penalty for sin]” (1 Corinthians 1:30, Amplified).
We could never stand before a holy, perfectly righteous God with our filthy garments.
Righteous robes are something we cannot provide for ourselves. But in Christ, we are acceptable because when the Father sees us, He first sees His righteous Son who died for us and redeemed us to God. What God requires (purity), Jesus provides.
“… you who were baptized into Christ have clothed yourselves with Christ” (Galatians 3:27, NIV).
We are covered, enveloped by Him. Positionally, we are righteous. That’s how the Father sees us. Practically, we get dirty spots on our robes and need to confess and forsake sin. We need to live out the righteousness that is ours.
But in the future, NO spots!
When we fast forward to the end of the ages and pull back the curtain of eternity, we see the people of God forever clothed in fine linen, pure and bright, representing the “righteous deeds” of God’s holy people (Revelation 19:8).
Remember, our deeds are only righteous because we are purified and made holy through Jesus’ work to save us and make us “a people that are His very own” (Titus 2:14).
So we might say the Christian’s daily dress code is “the righteousness of Christ.”
Are you a Christ-follower, redeemed and walking in that righteous robe today?
– *Cybersalt Digest’s Clean Laugh, Issue #3965, 9-18-13