Best Robes

Luke 15:22 English Standard Version (ESV) But the father said to his servants, ‘Bring quickly the best robe, and put it on him, and put a ring on his hand, and shoes on his feet.’

This verse is from the parable of the Prodigal Son. If it is not fresh on you minds give it a quick read and see what the son had been doing. He had been with the pigs. We understand the parallel here about the views of pigs in Jewish society, unclean animals. Nowhere in this parable do we see the prodigal son clean himself up. Neither did the father ask his servants to wash his son. He said quickly bring the best robe.

There was no concern for the best robe being dirtied by the unclean son. The father had no concern for his son’s cleanliness. The robe would cover his unclean state. While the ring and the shoes have their own symbolic meaning, I would like to stay with the symbol of the robe.

Isaiah 61:10 English Standard Version (ESV) I will greatly rejoice in the Lord; my soul shall exult in my God, for he has clothed me with the garments of salvation; he has covered me with the robe of righteousness, as a bridegroom decks himself like a priest with a beautiful headdress, and as a bride adorns herself with her jewels.

Here in Isaiah we see the robe of righteousness and it is compared to both the bridegroom and the bride. For the bridegroom it is linked to the priesthood and for the bride an adornment.

Hosea 2:19 English Standard Version (ESV) And I will betroth you to me forever. I will betroth you to me in righteousness and in justice, in steadfast love and in mercy.

Philippians 3:9 English Standard Version (ESV) and be found in him, not having a righteousness of my own that comes from the law, but that which comes through faith in Christ, the righteousness from God that depends on faith—

It is His robe of righteousness we get to wear as His betrothed.

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