3 Now Joshua was clothed with filthy garments, and was standing before the Angel. 4 Then He answered and spoke to those who stood before Him, saying, “Take away the filthy garments from him.” And to him He said, “See, I have removed your iniquity from you, and I will clothe you with rich robes.” 5 And I said, “Let them put a clean turban on his head.” So they put a clean turban on his head, and they put the clothes on him. And the Angel of the Lord stood by.
Now Joshua was clothed with filthy garments [excrement covered garments],
“Filthy garments” were covered with excrement. The high priest stood in ceremonially unclean priestly clothes. Satan’s accusation was true that the high priest was stained with sin. Joshua’s filthy priestly garments represented the sins of the nation. These filthy garments did not represent the true priestly vestments (Lev 22:3). Joshua stood as a representative of the nation in his priestly functions and not expressing his personal sins. It is Joshua, the high priest, not Joshua, the man, that stands in God’s presence.
and was standing before the Angel.
Joshua stood in the Angel of the LORD’s court under trial. He was a repugnant scene in the presence of a holy God.
Then He [Angel of Jehovah] answered and spoke to those who stood before Him, saying,
Those standing here were probably angels.
“Take away the filthy garments from him.”
Joshua’s acquittal was symbolized by removing his filthy garments.
And to him [Joshua the high priest] He said, “See, I have removed your iniquity from you,
This is a formal statement of Joshua’s acquittal, an act of God’s mercy. This was an act for Joshua, but it collectively represented the entire nation. God reinstated the high priest into his office.
and I will clothe you with rich robes.”
Priests were to don specially consecrated garments (Lev 8:7-13, 30; 16:4).
And I [Zechariah] said, “Let them put a clean turban on his head.”
Zechariah injected himself into the scene by asking that someone put a clean turban on the high priest’s head (Ex 28:36-38). The “turban” had a plate of gold on the headdress wrapped with long strips of cloth around the head (Lev 8:9).
So they put a clean turban on his head, and they put the clothes on him.
Clean turban and clothes represented judicial forgiveness. The turban was part of the high priest’s dress. It had a sign in gold on his headdress that said, “Holy to the Lord” (Ex 28:36, 37; 39:30, 31).
And the Angel of the Lord stood by.
The Angel of the LORD standing is an indication of the solemnity of the occasion.
God acts in grace to the believer because of the finished work of Christ.
Today, Christians can know that when they confess their sins, they are forgiven (1 Jn 1:9). God is faithful to what He says, and He is just in doing so because Jesus fully paid for our sin on the cross.