From last week's sermon (1/22/17), Isaiah emphasizes that The Goal of Salvation (Isaiah 60-62) is righteous living. From Isaiah 63 the primary emphasis is on God's power to enable his servants to live righteous lives.
Who are the enemies of the Judeans? Their own sins. Edom is no longer a problem (Isa 63:1a). They were captured by Babylon and were destroyed. They never returned. Edom doesn’t exist at this point in the return from exile. In the O.T. Edom is the symbol of the enemies of God.
So if the divine warrior is the one sent from God (Isa 63:1b-3), whose blood splatters his garment? It is his own. He became sin for our sakes (2 Cor 5:21). This warrior has symbolically become the sins of his enemies. He has become the sins of his people. In so doing it is his own blood that covers his garment (Rev 19:13).
Considering salvation, conversion, regeneration, Jesus comes as the suffering servant (Isaiah 42, 49, 50, 53). He takes the sins of the world into himself submissively and meekly. Like a lamb before it’s shearers he is dumb and silent (Isa 53:7). But when it comes to defeating sin in his people, he doesn’t come as the suffering servant. Rather, he comes as a divine warrior to destroy the power of sin in our lives (Isa 59:15-18).
It is important that we understand both pictures: 1) The suffering servant who meekly takes the sins of the world into himself and gives back love, AND 2) the divine warrior who comes to attack sin of his people; the divine warrior who destroy sin with his own blood. The cross is the answer to sins that were committed, and it is the answer to sins as a power in our lives. Only the cross is and has the power to defeat sin in our lives now. This is good news. Tragically, in the U.S. we have made it the answer to sins that were committed in the past, but which has nothing at all to say about sins that Christians commit now. This is tragic and unfortunate.