We have put on
But though you are master of might, you judge with clemency, and with much lenience you govern us; for power, whenever you will, attends you. And you taught your people, by these deeds, that those who are just must be kind; and you gave your children good ground for hope that you would permit repentance for their sins.
In the moment of baptism we put on Christ. The white garment we received represents the purity and beauty of our souls at that moment and also represents our future, where as Revelation tells us: a great multitude which no man could number, from every nation, from all tribes and peoples and tongues, standing before the throne and before the Lamb, clothed in white robes.
We should reflect on this awesome picture and see ourselves standing there, clothed in white, before God’s throne, ready to praise, worship, adore, and live with Him forever.
We began our readings today with the Book of Wisdom, and Wisdom knows that all fall and cannot possibly live up to the perfection of God. God is mighty, yet His might is filled with mercy and lenience. He sets that example for us to live up to, for we must be kind. The caveat is that kindness must flow from being just.
To be just means that we live guided by truth, reason, justice, and fairness. Our actions are principled; equitable; and proper. Everything we feel, say, do; all that is seen and unseen is based on right and in keeping with the truth of God. It means that if we have put on Christ, taken up that white robe, our lives must be modeled on and lived out in His way.
The problems we face in our lives, homes, neighborhoods, cities – in fact worldwide – come from confusing God’s mercy and leniency with license to do whatever we feel, to believe whatever we want, to just let it all be. We forget our white robes (I think I left them in that closet I never open), and that we have put on Christ. We think being just is to just go along, to ignore the questions that should be plaguing us. We believe the false prophets who tell us that everything is ok, do what feels good, our feelings are all that matter. We start thinking all faiths are somehow equal and ‘what does it really matter…’ Jesus gets reduced to maybe a once weekly outing.
The allures are strong, we can be weak – but there is hope in God’s forgiveness. With prayer, regular worship, and bible study we build up the strength to be just – to dig out those white robes, to remember that we must measure every moment of our lives against Jesus. Jesus is the only truth, and each decision, word, and action are to be considered, spoken, and done as if Jesus were doing them – for we are wearing Him.