“Now Joshua was clothed with filthy garments and was standing before the Angel” (Zech. 3:3 NKJV)
Man was created by God as a decision making agent. Every man has a will of his own. As human beings, we run the risk with every decision we take outside of the word of God, the consequences of which will lead to spiritual and physical death (Gen. 2:16-17). Strait is the gate, and narrow is the way, which leads to life (Matt. 7:14). God will not override the will of a believer as he undertakes the journey between his present salvation (Matt. 24:13) to the ultimate salvation (Rom. 13:11) in this world.
When we accept Christ into our lives as our personal Lord and Savior, apart from receiving a new spirit into our new heart (Ezek. 11:19 & 36:26), we also received a garment of salvation as part of the salvation package (Matt. 22:11). This garment of salvation which God provides us with can be described as a barometer with which we can measure our Christian walk as we continue our journey towards the ultimate salvation.
This heavenly garment can be stained by a believer’s individual sin (Isa. 1:18). Our sins are “painted” on the garment when we live and conduct ourselves in our daily lives contrary to the word of God. It can also be soiled by the sin of the collective stand of the church (Zech. 3:1, 3-5).
A stained garment of salvation is a soiled garment, and any person wearing such a garment is on the part of self destruction, whether he knows of it or not. Any other garment we may wish to wear makes us not only transparent (Rev. 3:18) but naked before the Lord, and this is not only repugnant but also dangerous (Gen. 3:7). But when the stained garment is washed in the blood of the Lamb, it is made white again (Rev. 7:13-14).
In order to avoid staining the garment of salvation which we have received, we must also avoid vicarious sins, that is, sins, which we lead others to commit. We must not only avoid giving the sacrifice of fools (Eccl. 5:1) but also avoid committing those sins that easily beset us (Heb. 12:1). We must burn off the approaching fire of hell, by burning off the sins in our lives with the fire of Christ. Fire does not burn fire, it extinguishes it.
We must not only continuously feed but must also groom our inner man. God is coming back to receive a glorious church that is holy, without spots, wrinkles or blemish (Eph. 5:27).
What is the present state of your garment of salvation?