Our devotional today ends up showing us how one little letter, the letter ‘R’, can make such a difference in our lives and in our walk with the Lord. First, we read in Isaiah 61:10, “I will greatly rejoice in the Lord, my soul shall be joyful in my God; for he hath clothed me with the garments of salvation, he hath covered me with the robe of righteousness, as a bridegroom decketh himself with ornaments, and as a bride adorneth herself with her jewels.“
I love the “…with garments of salvation” reference because it reminds us that the Lord ‘covers’ us in His righteousness and no longer sees us as the lost, destitute sinner we once were. Remember, before we knew the Lord, we were wandering deep in the wilderness, dirty, hungry, war-torn, and certainly bedraggled. He found us and covered us there in that place… covering us with a ‘Regal Robe’, and setting us on His path, according to His will. That Regal Robe is not merely a pretty covering, but also protection from ‘the elements’, which not only includes weather (storms, cold, wind), but worldly pitfalls (rebellion, lusts, rules/legalism). We now have His righteous covering to guide us.
2 Corinthians 5:21, reads; “For he hath made him to be sin for us, who knew no sin; that we might be made the righteousness of God in him.” But, all too often, we get entangled wearing this new robe, and too quickly refer back to religious rules, precepts, and peer-pressure demands from those around us… exchanging that Regal Robe for a Legal Robe. The letter ‘R’, being the difference! And then, we wander off that path of righteousness He set us on (His will), and try to ‘be like the others’… and confusion ensues, distractions persist, and our hope and peace are squelched.
But, this ‘robe of salvation’ with which He covered us is ours, not theirs. Meant to fit US, not them. In fact, Philippians 2:12, reads, “…work out your own salvation with fear and trembling.” The freedom we once enjoyed being covered in His Regal Robe should never be replaced with their Legal Robe.
NOT to say we can do anything we want, now… that scripture DOES say to work out our ‘own’ salvation with ‘fear and trembling’. Not being afraid of God, but cautiously walking His ‘straight and narrow’ path of righteousness. No longer straying, no longer wandering, and certainly no longer reverting back to the Legal Robe.
Ephesians 4:22-24 instructs us; “That ye put off concerning the former conversation the old man, which is corrupt according to the deceitful lusts; (23) And be renewed in the spirit of your mind; (24) And that ye put on the new man, which after God is created in righteousness and true holiness.” A spiritual life in this earthly world is very, very tough. That is why Jesus said, “…many are called, but few answer”.
One little letter changes our walk with the Lord; for when we wear His Regal Robe, we are protected by His righteousness AND led by His Spirit unto His calling for our lives. We no longer work TO be saved, we work THAT we are saved! The first is ‘legal’, the latter is ‘regal’.