The Tabernacle, it’s Spiritual Significance, Part 9
The Parable of the Wedding Feast illustrates the imputation of the merit of Christ from another
standpoint. It was the custom at weddings that all the guests, as they entered the house, should be
handed a wedding garment. The acceptance of this implied that they would put it on and wear it. (Matt
Coming to the door, desiring to enter in, would imply faith in respect to the marriage.
The “door” as you may have guessed is in reference to the “first vail” to the tabernacle, “You shall
make a screen for the door of the tabernacle, woven of blue, purple, and scarlet thread, and
fine woven linen, made by a weaver.” (Exod 26:36). Desiring to enter in would imply that the
individual after having counted the cost had figuratively speaking tied himself to the door of the
tabernacle, having made a full surrender or consecration of himself to the Lord. Faith in the marriage
would imply ones hope of being a part of the “bride of Christ” of joint heirship with the Lord.
The robe would represent justification; the imputation of Christ's righteousness shows that all
who would be acceptable at the wedding must appear in the imputed righteousness of Christ,
and not in their own more or less filthy garments of imperfection and unrighteousness. But surely this
garment represented something more than mere justification, else why should it be called a "wedding
These garments were not provided for the public in general, but merely for those who had been
invited to the wedding and who had accepted the invitation and were desirous of entering in on
the terms and conditions of the host.
Applying this we see that God is not supplying justification to the world in general, or to
believers in general, but merely to such believers as accept the terms and conditions attaching
to the marriage supper arrangements.
We might assume that all believers were invited to this feast and that all the invited ones were informed
that wedding garments were provided for them, but that only those who accepted the invitation and
actually came to the wedding and entered in through the door were actually given the wedding robes.
Applied, this would mean that all believers were informed respecting the merit of Christ's sacrifice and its
sufficiency for them as a covering for all their blemishes and as making them acceptable at the wedding
feast if, leaving sin and worldly business and pleasure, they would come as guests to the wedding. The
promise and tender of the wedding garment was a promise of full justification from sin and a full
imputation of restitution rights, but with the understanding that in order to be sharers of the heavenly
blessings all earthly rights, earthly honors and talents, must be surrendered, must be buried, that the
individual might be reckoned as a New Creature in the provided robe.
The coming of the guests to the door desiring to enter in to the festival, pictures our compliance
with the Lord's call and willingness to sacrifice self and to have ourselves buried as old
creatures that we might appear as New Creatures in the wedding garments. The acceptance of
the garment and the putting of it on, therefore symbolized that the individual had not only
consecrated himself unto death, but that his consecration had been accepted and that
thenceforth he was a New Creature privileged to enter in and to participate in all the privileges
and joys of the occasion.
The point we wish specially to emphasize here is that the wedding garment in the parable represents
more than merely justification—it represents additionally sanctification or consecration, to be dead with
Christ; to suffer with him; to be baptized into his death; to drink of his cup. Only by such a consecration
could anyone possibly have right to be at the great banquet, either as a member of the Bride class or as
a member of the "great company," her companion. (R4525)
ONLY THE CONSECRATED ARE SONS
“The liberty to become Sons of God not only did not extend to those men who lived before the Redeemer
came and purchased the world, but it has extended to only a comparatively few during this Gospel age;
the great mass of mankind even in the present day know nothing about our Lord Jesus, and how could
they believe on him “of whom they have not heard?" (Rom 10:14). And of those who have even
heard that there was such a person, how few comparatively believe in or recognize the meaning of his
name Savior; yet none but these have even the liberty or privilege of becoming Sons of God.
Look again, and see among the comparatively few, even of those who do recognize him as the Redeemer,
the Savior, and who therefore were all granted this privilege, liberty, and favor, and note how few have
availed themselves of the great privilege,-- how few have become Sons of God.
To see clearly just what class of believers constitutes the Sons of God let us now examine the
process by which those who "believed in his name" were granted and accepted the proffered
liberty and became Sons of God, joint-heirs with Jesus Christ their Lord.
We have said that all such are covered by the robe of Christ's righteousness imputed to them,
because of which they find acceptance with the Father. But to whom does the Lord give his
robe for this purpose?
Not to all believers; for though all have the liberty to wear the robe and obtain "access," all do
not choose to use it by fulfilling the conditions. The robes are provided for the BODY OF
CHRIST, and to come under those robes we must get into that consecrated company, into that
select class, known as those whose names are written in the book of life--and as branches in the Vine.
This is the class to which the Master said, "Abide in me and I in you. As the branch cannot bear fruit
of itself except it abides in the vine, no more can ye except ye abide in me...If a man abide not
in me, he is cast forth as a branch." To the same class the apostle John wrote, "Abide in him." The
apostle Paul wrote that God "hath chosen us in him" and exhorts "so walk ye in him"--"rooted and
built up in him," for "ye are complete in him." And of his own aims he says, "That I may win Christ
and [abiding in him to the end] be found in him" complete at last.--See John 15:4, 6; 1 Cor 8:6;
2 Cor 5:21; Eph. 1:4; Phil 3:9; Col 2:6, 7, 9; 1 John 2:5, 6, 28.
The way in which we get into Christ, counted in as members of his body, and therefore under
the robes of his righteousness, is fully explained by the Apostle in Rom 6:3-5. He there shows
that such members are immersed or buried into Christ, i.e., their wills, plans, etc., are completely buried;
such having thereafter no will of their own; instead, the will of Christ reigns in and rules over them,
controlling their acts, and words, and looks and thoughts. Being dead to self, to their own wills, plans,
etc., for them to live is for Christ to live; and in them Christ is still present in the flesh, they being his
representatives before men. (Phil 1:21) These share the reproaches of Jesus their Head and Lord now
and have fellowship as members of his body, in the sufferings of Christ; and in due time, if they continue
faithful unto the end, they are promised membership in the church or body to be glorified-joint-heirship
in the glory and dominion and work of their Lord when the sufferings are past. Rom 8:17
These are represented in the Jewish types by the priesthood and its head, the High-Priest. The high-
priest of our profession, or order, is Jesus; and all the under priests together with him constitute the
Royal Priesthood, as Peter says. As the under priests were all represented in the person of the High
Priest, by his head and members, so in our priesthood; while we are each severally priests, we are all
represented in our High Priest as body members in particular. (1 Cor 12:27) Our Lord the head of the
body is not covered with any covering, for he was perfect; "in him was no sin;" but we all need the
covering of his white robes of justification, else we never could have found access into the "holies" and
"into this grace wherein we stand rejoicing in hope of the glory of God" soon to be revealed in us
as Sons and heirs-- joint-heirs with Jesus Christ our Lord.
So then we see that only those who after believing in the only name, Savior, followed on and
consecrated themselves, took up the cross and sufferings of Christ and shared them,--only such
were accepting of the liberty to become Sons; and only such coming into his "body" and under
his robes are presented before the Father, or accepted as Sons. In these only, can we see a
begetting of the truth (the Holy Spirit) and a desire to be conformed to the image of God's only
But are not all believers under Christ's robes? Even those who do not consecrate themselves?
No; only the consecrated.
In fact the others (the tentatively justified believers who chose to remain in the courtyard) have no need
for these presentation robes [robes in which to be acceptably presented to the Father as candidates for
Son-ship and heirship] because they do not wish to occupy the positions of sons, after they find that its
distinguishing features in the present time are trials and sufferings, etc., in the "narrow way." (Heb 12:
6) To be a Son implies both special favor and special endurance, and since the only benefit of
the "robe" consists in making the wearers presentable to the Father, and since these do not
desire to thus present themselves living sacrifices to God, holy and acceptable [as sons and
heirs] through [in] Jesus Christ, it is manifest that to cover such with a robe would be useless.”
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