Wednesday, August 2, 2017

Zechariah 3 sermon prep - part 3

Is there a clearer spiritual viewpoint anywhere else in the Old Testament than in Zechariah Chapter 3?  

The fourth of eight visions in the Old Testament book of Zechariah is of the High Priest of Zechariah's day on the Day of Atonement. The High Priest; Joshua, is viewed in the spiritual realm in God's Holy court.  The court is presided over by an angel of the Lord.  Satan is also present.  In the visible world, on the Day of Atonement, Joshua alone is evident in the Holy Place.

Preparation for the Day of Atonement was quite involved.  The High Priest needed to be fitted exactingly in his clothes.  Each part of his attire was significant.  It would be peculiar to think that the clothing would have dirt upon it or be stained.  An illustration of the clothing of the High Priest exhibits the care taken in dressing fittingly:

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Now Joshua was dressed in filthy clothes as he stood before the angel.

While the clothing was neat and tidy in the physical world, the clothing appears different in the spiritual realm.  High Priest Joshua stands in God’s holy courtroom seen to be dressed in filthy clothes.

The clothes are viewed as filthy in the spiritual realm for two reasons:

  1. Joshua is bearing the sins of all the people.  It is the filth of the sins that make the clothing filthy.
  2. Joshua is presenting immediately after the return from exile and the people are still awash with the experience of being separated from the city of God while they were in a heathen nation.
It is also plausible that the clothing is filthy in representation of the current building works of rebuilding of the temple.

In the next post, I’ll consider some particular aspects of the High Priest’s garments.

More to come!


Note: all links good as at 1 August 2017
Note: Joshua and Jesus are from the same root Hebrew word.

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