Beatitudes in Revelation (3)

Beatitudes in Revelation (3)

Beatitudes in Revelation (3). 

“Look, I will come as unexpectedly as a thief! Blessed are all who are watching for me, who keep their clothing ready so they will not have to walk around naked and ashamed.” (Revelation 16:15, NLT).

“Blessed” = makarioi; a rich Greek word with many nuances, all in the context of enjoying God’s favor: fully satisfied; deeply joyful; delightfully content; profoundly happy; blissfully fulfilled. When Jesus declares that you are blessed, He is congratulating you, confidently affirming that God is active in your life. You are blessed when you put yourself in the position to be transformed by God. You are blessed, you are most fortunate, you are to be envied, because you now have the unexpected privilege of participating in the Kingdom of God. When you are blessed, you are aware that your blessedness does not depend on your outer circumstances. You are thus filled with hopeful joy. So when Jesus says that you are blessed, it is time to celebrate, for He is looking upon you with favor. In these Beatitudes, Jesus is saying that God wants us to be blessed, He is for us, He wants good to happen to us.

Jesus promised blessings to those who anticipate His return, who are awake, vigilant and watchful. He made a special point that we who are watching and waiting need to remain fully clothed in Christ, that we are to guard our clothing, that we are to keep our holy clothes on!

Holiness has a uniform. To be holy is to wear a redeemed wardrobe. Isaiah talks about putting on garments of splendor (Is. 52:1). The psalmist refers to being clothed with godliness (Ps. 132:16). Job claims that he has put on righteousness and it clothed him, wearing justice like a robe (Job 29:14). Isaiah once again said that God dressed him with the clothing of salvation, and draped him in a robe of righteousness (Is. 61:10). The New Testament time and again discusses putting on Christ, wearing Jesus. (Galatians 3:27Romans 13:14). Paul also describes this aspect of holiness as taking off and putting on… take off the Old You, put on the New You. “Put on your new nature, created to be like God – truly righteous and holy (Ephes. 4:22-24). “Since God chose you to be the holy people He loves, clothe yourselves with tenderhearted mercy, kindness, humility, gentleness and patience.” (Colossians 3:12). So being holy means we pick out a new wardrobe. When we wear Christ, we have a new personal identity, a new style, a different look.

Consider the story of the Prodigal Son… What’s the first thing the waiting Father shouts out to His servants when His long-lost child has returned? “Find the best robe and put it on him!” (Luke 15:22). That important robe covers his destitute nakedness. That robe shows family origins in the Father’s house. It’s a holy robe. It is the robe of Christ, of forgiveness and grace and new life with the Father. The Father’s robe is a sign of holiness that we all put on when we approach the Father in brokenness and humility. His robe is a holy robe. It’s a part of our new wardrobe. We are all invited to put on the Father’s robe and clothe ourselves in Christ. And to stay that way, fully clothed till His return.