There are over 40 biblical references to ‘coats’ or ‘robes’ spread across the old and new testament. The priests of old would wear them, they were made specifically to signify God’s chosen, the separated, The priesthood.
Honourable Kings would remove their royal robes in the presence of heavens representative to present themselves lowly before God. Scripture tells us that Isaiah in the year of King Uzziah’s death saw God high and lifted up and the train of His robe filled the temple (Isaiah 6:1). The coat or robe you wore said alot about who you were, where you were from and what you did…sometimes they told you who your father was!
Most famous is the story of Joseph, given a coat of many colours from his father who loved him. The Hebrew word for this is kethoneth passim and denotes the uniqueness of Jacobs gift. The value in which he held his son was woven through every thread, every stitch.
In a journey through the Gospels we discover another narrative where a robe is given representing the value of what was lost has now been found, how amazing is grace?
Luke 15 and Jesus is sharing a parable, a story wrapped in a riddle that leads to truth. It’s about lost sheep and missing gold coins that leads to a crescendo most commonly known as the story of the prodigal son. It’s been preached for centuries yet still holds for us hidden truths to be discovered and lived, the bible is the most incredible text ever written!
So who is the hero of the story?
We know that the father represents God and so it goes without saying that the passion and relentless tenderness that he displays directly points us to the attributes and characteristics of Elohim. The younger son has always stood tall for me. Sure he had his problems, and poor choices based on folly always leads to shipwreck. But he recovered, wiped off the dirt recognising there’s no future in the past and made amends. The older brother is essentially disqualified since Jesus gave us no more insight to his narrative and so for me that leaves ‘GRACE’, grace is the hero represented in the robe.
Verse 22 ‘But the father said to the servants ‘Quick, bring the finest robe in the house and put it on him.’
When Adam and Eve did their thing in the garden God immediately put into place His plan of redemption, the cross where God gave His best and Jesus gave His all. In the parable the father clothed his son in the finest robe and wrapped him in it … sounds just like Jesus to me.