272. Clothed with power.
"I am going to send you what my Father has promised; but stay in the city until you have been clothed* (Greek: *endyō* means *'dressed'* ) *with power from on high."* ( Luke 24:49)
There are positions of authority that we recognise from the uniforms they wear and since we respect those positions, we also respect those who wear those uniforms. Even so, the Anointing is a dressing that the devil dreads! He doesn't dread the cassock of a Priest or the clerical collar of a Pastor, but only dreads the Anointing that clothes a servant of God! However, men are impressed by these *seemingly* (so as to give the impression of having a certain quality) powerful symbols, not realising that power is derived from the Anointing and not from the symbolism! Since Jesus couldn't be recognised by his clothing, Judas had to identify Jesus for the guards to arrest him. ( Matthew 26:48) Interestingly, the Jewish establishment failed to recognise Jesus who *'was designated by God to be a High priest in the order of Melchizedek'* ( Hebrews 5:10), because he wore no vestments like the ones worn by the high priests, but was recognised only by his Anointing. John the Baptist recognised Jesus by his Anointing and not by his *attire* (dressed in clothes of a specified kind). *John gave this testimony, "I saw the Spirit come down on him from heaven as a dove and remain on him. I would not have known him, except that the one who sent me to baptize with water told me, 'The man on whom you are the Holy Spirit come down and remain is he who will baptize with the Holy Spirit.'"* ( John 1:32-33) Jesus wore the Anointing like a cloak that even his clothes carried that Anointing! When the woman with the issue of blood touched his cloak, he asked, *"Who touched my clothes?",* because *'Jesus realised that power had gone out from him.'* ( Mark 5:27-30) Before he ascended to heaven, he left his mantle of authority with his disciples ( Matthew 28:18), just as Elijah's mantle ( cloak) fell on Elisha, as he went up to heaven in a whirlwind. The company of prophets who were watching, said, *"The spirit of Elijah is resting on Elisha"* because he began to do what Elijah did and even more because he received a double portion of his spirit ! *'He took the cloak that had fallen from him and struck the water with it ... it divided to the right and the left and he crossed over.'* ( 2 Kings 2:13-14) No wonder Jesus said to his disciples: *"I tell you the truth, anyone who has faith in me will do what I have been doing. He will do even greater things than these, because I am going to the Father."* ( John 14:12) Since the clothing with power is to become witnesses of Christ ( Acts 1:8), we ought to clothe ourselves with Christ first! *Clothe* (Greek: *endyō* means *'dress'* ) *yourselves with the Lord Jesus Christ'* (Romans 13:14) *'for all who were baptized into Christ have clothed* ( Greek: *endyō* ) *yourselves with Christ.'* ( Galatians 3:27) But we are also warned to watch out for those who are supposedly "clothed with power", but have no character! *"Watch out for false prophets. They come to you in sheep's clothing, but inwardly they are ferocious wolves. By their fruit you will recognise them... by their fruit you will recognise them."* (Matthew 7:15-20) *'Therefore, as God's chosen people, holy and dearly loved, clothe* ( Greek: *endyō* ) *yourselves with compassion, kindness, humility, gentleness and patience. Bear with each other and forgive whatever grievances you may have against one another. Forgive as the Lord forgave you. And over all these virtues put on love '* ( Colossians 3:12-14), because *'the way of love'* ( 1 Corinthians 14:1) is the pathway to God's power. Amen.