O love of God, how strong and true! Eternal, and yet, ever new;
Uncomprehended and unbought, Beyond all knowledge and all thought.Horatius Bonar, 1861
O how our souls are thrilled as we consider the love of God! Its currents are deep and strong, able to absolve the darkest sin, when in repentance the sinner approaches the throne of grace (Hebrews 4:16).
In Zechariah 3:1, “Joshua the high priest [is] standing before the angel of the LORD, and Satan [is] standing at high right hand to resist him.” But the LORD, Jesus Christ, rebukes the enemy! Listen to what Jesus tells the adversary:
“The LORD rebuke thee, O Satan; even the LORD that hath chosen Jerusalem rebuke thee: is not [Joshua] a brand plucked out of the fire.”(Zechariah 3:2)
Beloved, Jesus is our Advocate with the Father (1 John 2:1, 2). And He ever lives to make intercession on our behalves (Hebrews 7:25). While the enemy seeks to steal, kill, and destroy, Jesus imparts life abundant (John 10:10). While the enemy seduces us into sin, and shames us before the Father for that sin, Jesus is there calling us home. Jesus is there calling us to come out of sin and draw nigh to Him (2 Corinthians 6:17, 18; Revelation 18:4; James 4:8; Isaiah 55:6, 7). And in those times when we feel weak, unworthy and sin stricken, He comes to us. He is there knocking at the doors of our hearts (Revelation 3:20). With politeness, He waits to come in and sup with us. And when we allow Jesus to come in, He does not leave us the same way He meets us.
No. After Jesus rebuked that old serpent, the Bible mentions that
“…Joshua was clothed with filthy garments…”(Zechariah 3:3)
But, Jesus, instead of casting Joshua out of His presence, commands this:
“…Take away the filthy garments from him. And unto him [H]e said, Behold, I have caused thine iniquity to pass from thee, and I will clothe thee with a change of raiment.”(Zechariah 3:4)
Hallelujah! Jesus will remove the filthy rags of our righteousness, and impute His own (Isaiah 64:6; Romans 4:6, 7). Oh what love divine! The eyes of the Savior look beyond our faults and meet our need. What Joshua needed was a cleansing of sin. And Jesus not only removed Joshua’s sin, but glorified him by having a mitre set on his head (Zechariah 3:5). And all Joshua had to do to maintain this purified state and glory was to obey. Jesus tells him:
“If thou wilt walk in my ways, and if thou wilt keep my charge, then shalt thou also judge [M]y house, and shalt also keep [M]y courts, and I will give thee places to walk among these that stand by [the heavenly host].”(Zechariah 3:7)
Beloved, this opportunity is open to us all. The Servant of the Lord, Ellen White, declares that
“‘…Joshua the high priest’ [is] — a representative of the people who keep the commandments of God…”(16 LtMs, Ms 125, 1901, par. 37)
And she bids us, “poor, repentant mortals, [to] hear the words of Jesus, and believe as [we] hear:…I will blot out [your] transgressions. I will cover [your] sins. I will impute to [you] My righteousness” (16LtMs, Ms. 125, 1901, par. 40).
We are thus behooved to live for Christ. We must die daily to self and let our lives be hid with Christ in God (Colossians 3:3). Not that we should spurn the grace of God by living in sin. The rather, our desire should be to please God all the more since He has given us new starts. By the power of Jesus, let us live in the Spirit and gain the victory over sin. For, “[we] can do all things through Christ which strengtheneth [us]” (Philippians 4:13). This is the love of God.
Thank You Jesus!