Does God Care What You Wear?

Audio: mp3

God’s Character

How many here love God? God is a very interesting person and is there a privilege to stop our busy lives and actually get to know who God is and what sort of person He is. As we get to know Him, we admire Him for who He is and some of these traits of God that I admire is His humility. How many people here desire to be humble? Do you believe it’s a requirement to enter into heaven, yes or no?

The Lord is not greedy. God is a God of sharing and that is very evident. The fact that He gave flowers and then gave us a nose to appreciate the smell that comes from the flower, He could have said “no, that’s all mine, I will not give anyone else the pleasures of mine”, but He equipped us to appreciate the things that He appreciates. God is not greedy, He does not covet things and if you believe that we can go to heaven if we are covetous, we cant.

We praise the Lord for His character because of what we have read in the Bible but I would like to draw your attention to a scripture in Romans 1:20. From the outset we understand a little bit of that Gods character of who He is as a person and how His mind works. Romans 1:20 says because we don’t see God, He understands we don’t see them. He knows that, so He’s made provisions for the fact that we can’t see heaven itself or the angels or we can no longer see Christ in person anymore because He is in heaven but He has made provision for the fact that we can’t see them.

Romans 1:20 for the invisible things of Him from the creation of the world are clearly seen.

What it’s saying is, those things you cannot see, they are clearly seen. How do we see things we can’t see? This is being understood by the things that are made.

Romans 1:20 being understood by the things that are made, [even] his eternal power and Godhead; so that they are without excuse:

God knows we can’t see things and He does not expect us to believe in things that there is no evidence for so He gives us things that we can clearly see and in seeing those things, we can clearly see. We clearly see those things we cannot see.

When God made the world He instilled so many object lessons that essentially if we would tap into the meanings that He has put in everything, God would be screaming at us messages all day long. Now we understand living in the city that Satan has utilized every street corner and every possible square inch of material to have advertising to bombard our brains so we would think upon worldly things and upon him. Isn’t that what He has done? He is very successful in his advertising campaign, yes or no? He is absolutely. But God has won but not so to us but yet it is just as powerful if we are willing.

Morning by Morning

If we would tap into lessons, this is how our morning would be. We would wake up in the morning and as we arose out of our sleep right there God would be telling us about the resurrection of the dead, would He not? How many times do we get up in the morning and think this is actually the way we are symbolizing the resurrection of the dead? We have been asleep for so many hours and now we arising out of our beds to life to do things and have enjoyment and so forth. That’s exactly what God wants us to know so that if we tune our minds into Him, that would be the lesson for the morning. We would get up and think about the resurrection.

Or perhaps you would look at your window and see the sun rising and then you would say ah the power of the just is the shining light that shines more and more to the perfect day. That Christian development is just like that sun rising out from the horizon. We see a power of the resurrection and we can see justification and sanctification in the process of the sun coming out.

Then we would go to our wardrobes and get dressed and if we had any, if we would tune into the Lord again we would say, well I am covering my shame today by the righteousness of Christ and I will cover myself and l would learn that the shame of my past can be covered by what Jesus has done. Then after getting dressed we would go out of that door, we would open the door of our room and that would tell us that we must open our hearts to Jesus every morning.

Then we would go and wash our hands for breakfast and as we wash our hands, the water would go over our hands and we would connect that God is washing our hearts and our hands by the water of His word that it flows over and takes over the filth away and right there we can see that God is wanting to take away every deform that we have. Then we would go to the dinner table and take out the bread and right there we would think of the bread of life and how Christ has made provisions for our spiritual and physical life and then we would thank Him for our food.

As we have our bread we would put some oil on the bread and we would think about the oil being the Holy Spirit and we would say, “Lord please put your Holy Spirit into my life, the oil of joy this morning.” We put some salt on the bread and we would think that we are salt of the earth and that we need to bring out the best flavours of other people as we mingle through the fruit salad of life and we need the ingredients of Christ love to draw these beautiful flavours out of people. We would finish our meal and then we would go outside and see the grass and the grass would tell us that is what the glory of man is like. That it might die tomorrow and whatever we are doing today will only last for so long so don’t get hung up on the trivial things of life because life is like grass.

Before you walked out of that door, you’ve been bombarded with so many object lessons that your mind would have nothing else to think about other than the Lord Jesus Christ and His application to your life in all reality. Invisible things are clearly seen by the things which we do see. Can we understand that? God has instilled that from creation. When Jesus came to earth, we saw the Father in Christ Jesus. Is that what all His lessons were about? That you would hear a lesson from Jesus. If you were in His day talking about the fishing net, how the gospel is like a fishing net and you would hop onto your boat being a fisherman. If you were a disciple you would throw that net out and think Jesus was just talking about this net wasn’t He? Right there your mind in your daily activity would be connected to the lessons of Jesus.

He might not just talk about the fishing net, He is talking about the good Samaritan. Every time you walked to Jericho and you passed the dangerous parts of Jericho, what sort of things would you think about? Would you start going over the lesson that happened on the road to Jericho? Or you may be planting in the garden and Jesus lessons had been talking about the sower going forth to sow the seed and any time we have a seed in our hands to put into the ground, what would we think about? This is how God is training you and me and not just how God is doing it, but He wants us to train our children in the same way

Deuteronomy 6:4 Hear, O Israel: The LORD our God [is] one LORD: 5 And thou shalt love the LORD thy God with all thine heart, and with all thy soul, and with all thy might. 6 And these words, which I command thee this day, shall be in thine heart: 7 And thou shalt teach them diligently unto thy children, and shalt talk of them when thou sittest in thine house, and when thou walkest by the way, and when thou liest down, and when thou risest up. 8 And thou shalt bind them for a sign upon thine hand, and they shall be as frontlets between thine eyes. 9 And thou shalt write them upon the posts of thy house, and on thy gates.

Everything we do is to be lessons drawn out from those things and put into our children and our own minds. God is saying okay I want everything you do to be intertwined with me. Isn’t that fair? That’s very fair. Now when Jesus was giving His parables, He gave a parable of a good shepherd. Was a shepherd and a sheep common sight in his day?

Again Jesus found access to the minds of His hearers by the pathway of their familiar associations. He had likened the Spirit’s influence to the cool, refreshing water. He had represented Himself as the light, the source of life and gladness to nature and to man. Now in a beautiful pastoral picture He represents His relation to those that believe on Him. No picture was more familiar to His hearers than this, and Christ’s words linked it forever with Himself. Never could the disciples look on the shepherds tending their flocks without recalling the Saviour’s lesson. They would see Christ in each faithful shepherd. They would see themselves in each helpless and dependent flock. {DA 476.2}

This is Christ, this is Gods character. This is the person that He is. He wants to get to you on very practical levels. The things you are doing, He wants you to do those things and to draw from those things that you are doing.

Lessons of Him

Can you do that? If we would do that then we can love the Lord our God with all our hearts with all our minds and with all our souls. If not, we would be caught up in what we are doing in our occupation and be so absorbed with that, we would forget God. God does not want that. He wants you to remember Him so He has done this from the creation of the world with the things that we can’t see. He has made visible representations of it and put it right in our face if we would want to see it.

God loves powerful practical lessons. This is the person He is. He loves to illustrate truths and make to it very powerful in the mind. That’s what God likes to do. Think of Abraham. God wants to show to Abraham the sacrifice that He is going to make for the sins of this world. What does God decide to do? Okay Abraham I want you to take your son, your only begotten son and sacrifice him for me please. Now He was not kidding when he said that. Abraham said, are you really serous? God said, that is what I want you to do. Do you think would have been an easy thing for Abraham? This would have been absolutely heart-wrenching for him. The promised child had already been promised of God, to then take him and kill him. Killing not just the average person but your son, could you do that to your child? Understanding that God is serous and so we know the story that Abraham took his son and as hard as it was, he did not tell the mother because she would not have let him do it, he went in obedience to God through this painful experience. The Bible says that Abraham stretched forth his hand and took a the knife to slay his son.

Genesis 22:10 And Abraham stretched forth his hand, and took the knife to slay his son. 11 And the angel of the LORD called unto him out of heaven, and said, Abraham, Abraham: and he said, Here [am] I. 12 And he said, Lay not thine hand upon the lad, neither do thou any thing unto him: for now I know that thou fearest God, seeing thou hast not withheld thy son, thine only [son] from me. 13 And Abraham lifted up his eyes, and looked, and behold behind [him] a ram caught in a thicket by his horns: and Abraham went and took the ram, and offered him up for a burnt offering in the stead of his son.

What would have happened if the angel did not stop him? Would he have died? God says, okay now you’ve got the point, you’ve got the lesson. You don’t actually have to do it I really just wanted you to really understand the pain that it is. Do you think Abraham would have appreciated this ram? How do think his heart would have been? Do you think Abraham would love God from this experience? Do you think this experience did something more than verbalization? The problem that we have is that we always talk about Christianity, talk about Christ instead of living it. If we would go through life connected with Christ, He would teach us lessons so powerfully we would never forget them.

How many have got memory problems, remembering the lessons that God has? God has a way of instilling it straight in the mind like a hot iron that is searing into the conscience. God is good at doing that. He did that to Abraham.

Hosea

Think of Hosea the prophet. God tells Hosea, “Look, I want you to go and marry a prostitute.” Hosea is like hhmm. God says, “The land of Israel has gone off after other gods because they are committing adultery with me and I want you to know what is like, I want you to understand the experience. I don’t want to just tell you that Israel is going after other gods, I want you to go and marry a prostitute and have children with her and experience life like that.”

You can read the story in Hosea 1:1. It says straight out what God intended to teach Hosea and ultimately Hosea to teach others. Do you think that is a very powerful way to get the lesson embedded into the mind? Yes? Look at Ezekiel chapter 4. Turn your attention to Ezekiel 4 and what we are looking at is Gods character. We want to understand a little bit about God before we look at the subject of ‘Does God care what you wear?’ We want to understand God as a personality. What sort of person is He like? We already saw He likes to illustrate very powerfully on practical level. He likes to do it to Abraham, Hosea and Ezekiel.

Ezekiel

Ezekiel 4:11 Thou shalt drink also water by measure, the sixth part of an hin: from time to time shalt thou drink. 12 And thou shalt eat it [as] barley cakes, and thou shalt bake it with dung that cometh out of man, in their sight. 13 And the LORD said, Even thus shall the children of Israel eat their defiled bread among the Gentiles, whither I will drive them. 14 Then said I, Ah Lord GOD! behold, my soul hath not been polluted: for from my youth up even till now have I not eaten of that which dieth of itself, or is torn in pieces; neither came there abominable flesh into my mouth. 15 Then he said unto me, Lo, I have given thee cow’s dung for man’s dung, and thou shalt prepare thy bread therewith. 16 Moreover he said unto me, Son of man, behold, I will break the staff of bread in Jerusalem: and they shall eat bread by weight, and with care; and they shall drink water by measure, and with astonishment: 17 That they may want bread and water, and be astonied one with another, and consume away for their iniquity.

God is saying to Ezekiel, I want to give a lesson to Israel and I want you to bake some bread and put human dung, human faeces into the cooking of that and I want you to eat it in front of the children of Israel. You can see by Ezekiel’s response, he was not too impressed at this lesson. But this is actually quite a powerful lesson. In verse 14 He said, ah Lord, God behold my soul have not been polluted for from my youth even to now have I not eaten of that which dies of itself and all is torn in pieces neither came there abominable flesh into my mouth. I have been a health reformer; I have been like a vegan and you wanting me to do this? Oh Lord no way.

This is just terrible and God is saying, this is what people are going to eat bread like one day. All the nutrients are gone and just the stuff that comes through is left over and that is what bread is like today. I want you to take this dung and put it in the bread and eat it. He complained but praise the Lord He had a bit of mercy on Ezekiel and in verse 15 it says;

Ezekiel 4:15 Lo, I have given thee cow’s dung for man’s dung, and thou shalt prepare thy bread therewith.

Okay, human dung is a little bit too much, go with the cow manure instead. Ezekiel says, this is better, this is okay, but it is still not nice. This is a powerful lesson.

Jerusalem

Ezekiel 4:16 Moreover he said unto me, Son of man, behold, I will break the staff of bread in Jerusalem: and they shall eat bread by weight, and with care; and they shall drink water by measure, and with astonishment:

So he did it. Now I believe Ezekiel would have never forgotten this lesson. It would have been so sealed in his mind that he couldn’t forget it. Because it is on a very practical level and it is a very strong demanding experience. Both Ezekiel and Hosea and Abraham weren’t convicted to do this. This wasn’t something that they just thought was a good idea. This was a direct command of God directly opposed to their common sense and they had just to do it. In obeying God contrary to the way they thought, there was such a powerful lesson instilled that their salvation I believe was secured. If you look at one more example, because this is not an Old Testament God we are dealing with here, this is Jesus and His person, and this is who God is like. He likes you to learn very valuable lessons.

Peter

Acts 10:9 On the morrow, as they went on their journey, and drew nigh unto the city, Peter went up upon the housetop to pray about the sixth hour: 10 And he became very hungry, and would have eaten: but while they made ready, he fell into a trance, 11 And saw heaven opened, and a certain vessel descending unto him, as it had been a great sheet knit at the four corners, and let down to the earth: 12 Wherein were all manner of fourfooted beasts of the earth, and wild beasts, and creeping things, and fowls of the air. 13 And there came a voice to him, Rise, Peter; kill, and eat. 14 But Peter said, Not so, Lord; for I have never eaten any thing that is common or unclean. 15 And the voice [spake] unto him again the second time, What God hath cleansed, [that] call not thou common. 16 This was done thrice: and the vessel was received up again into heaven.

This is a challenge to Peter. All the creeping things and bugs of all descriptions and any beasts and birds and Peter ate it up. People have misunderstood this vision and misunderstood God. He is not saying, eat unclean food neither is He saying eat dung. God does not want us to do that but He wants a lesson to be learned and once a lesson is learned, then the object in which it was done wasn’t really to be continued because some people believe that we can eat all we like because God says those things that were unclean are now clean. So we can eat snakes and mice and rats and every other thing, not so. Its talking about the gentiles as Peter being a Jew did not want to witness to the gentiles because we are considered unclean so the story continues that Peter went and converted Cornelius house.

Here we see the character of God. Can you see what sort of person He is? There are some other lessons that are of a life and death matter. Genesis 17 talks about circumcision. God makes a covenant with Abraham in Genesis

Genesis 17:10 This [is] my covenant, which ye shall keep, between me and you and thy seed after thee; Every man child among you shall be circumcised. 11 And ye shall circumcise the flesh of your foreskin; and it shall be a token of the covenant betwixt me and you. 12 And he that is eight days old shall be circumcised among you, every man child in your generations, he that is born in the house, or bought with money of any stranger, which [is] not of thy seed. 13 He that is born in thy house, and he that is bought with thy money, must needs be circumcised: and my covenant shall be in your flesh for an everlasting covenant. 14 And the uncircumcised man child whose flesh of his foreskin is not circumcised, that soul shall be cut off from his people; he hath broken my covenant.

We could look at God and say “okay Lord but I think you’ve gone too far with your examples. If I don’t take off the foreskin am I really going to die? Am I really going to miss out on heaven just because I have a bit more skin on my body than other people?”

God is saying, look, this is a token of the covenant. I want you to know something that you can’t see by something that you can see. Something that you really experience and if you can’t do that, then how will you ever remember my covenant if you can’t do the small action of remembering you’ve forgotten the covenant?

If you were Abraham, would this have been such an odd thing Lord? You wouldn’t take my foreskin off, that’s a bit close. He is a grown man, he is not an eight day old child. Would you think this is a powerful lesson? Yes or no. This is an extremely powerful lesson to Abraham. This is something that isn’t lightly regarded and if it does not get done you are not safe. It’s the covenant that salvation hinges upon but there is a token of the covenant, something to keep you remembering of it and if you don’t want to do that, then you don’t want to remember it. Simply that is what we are saying to God “Lord I don’t want you to imprint this in my mind, I don’t want you to give these really strong lessons to me, just tell me and I will remember it.”

God is saying, “I want you to have a very powerful lesson of this.”

The Passover

He does that with the Passover. The Bible talks about the blood and putting it on the door post of your house. It says this shall be a token of the covenant that I will make the Passover, the circumcision and the Passover. If people didn’t put the blood on the door post, they all lost. The first born child was killed if they didn’t do it. Then you think, Lord don’t you go too extreme by saying look, you will kill my son if I don’t put a bit of blood on my piece of wood at my door? But the Lord is saying you are missing the point. If you trample your foot on the token, what would you do to the real thing?

The Sabbath

From the creation of the world God has done this. This is the character of God. He wants you to learn things by very visible actions. Think of the Sabbath. The Sabbath is a sign, a memorial and so many Christians say, are we really lost if we don’t keep the Sabbath? Really, it is just a day, it doesn’t matter what day so long as you love God. God is saying if you can’t take a memorial from me, how could you ever love me? If you don’t even want to set out one day to bring to mind all the blessings that I have done for you, if you don’t want to do that, how do you expect to ever be saved? Because the Sabbath is the sign between me and you for all generations, it is a perpetual covenant.

Marriage

Think of marriage. When we get to heaven, there is no male or female. Is that understood? There is no marriage in heaven. Jesus said that very clearly in His lesson in the New Testament. God gives us marriage from earth because it says that the invisible things of Him from the creation of the world are clearly seen. How? Being understood by the things that are made even His eternal power and Godhead.

The Godhead

Something at the creation was going to be very tangible lesson of the Godhead. Some people think how could three individual things be united and called one? Or the question is, how could two beings be perfectly in order and be called one? If you can understand the fact when a man or woman gets married and they are one flesh, then you can understand God. Does that make sense? He says this marriage now is really essentially a symbol. If you read in Ephesians 5 you will see that a marriage between a man and a woman and the relationship of raising children and living together is a lesson of Christ and the church in raising children for God in the church. Marriage is actually the symbol, it’s the token of the real thing because marriage will not go on forever.

Can you be lost by breaking your marriage? Can you be lost by committing adultery? Yes or no. You could say Lord, I am just breaking the symbol, I still love you. The Lord is saying no, wreck the symbol, you’ve wrecked the whole lot. He wants us on so many levels.

The Lord’s Ordinances

He says my bread, my unleavened bread don’t put yeast in it. If we do put yeast in it, we don’t deserve the Lord’s body. We say to ourselves, it’s just a piece of yeast, come on. Who cares if I put yeast in that communion bread? The Lord is saying if you can’t even just obey not putting the yeast in it, you can’t obey on any other level, you fail right there. If you are not faithful in that which is least, how can you be faithful in that which is much? We understand that in so many levels that marriage is only a sign. The Sabbath is a sign of a relationship with God. Circumcision is a sign of baptism. Circumcision has been superseded by baptism praise the Lord. Now it is the action of baptism. Someone asked me, do I don’t need to get baptized if it’s just a form? If the real thing is in your heart, why do I need to get baptized? I said to the person, if you find someone who you want to marry and you love them, why get married? Just love them. Why do you have to do a formal walk down the aisle and then saying some vows if you just mean it in your heart, why go ahead and do it? The action of going out and actually having a wedding ceremony consolidates the relationship. Somehow, it is stronger than it was before.

Likewise it is in the form of baptism, if we don’t actually do the action, the lesson will not be imprinted as it should be. In other words, God wants people to be baptized so that they know of a definite experience that they have made and decide to follow the Lord. They don’t have to doubt, am I really the Lords? You can know that because you know you did. It is clearly seen. You can see something that you can’t see by doing something you can see. Are we getting to know God? That is who He is. He does not like forms for the sake of forms. God is not into formalism. He does not want us to be baptized and not have the real thing. He does not want people to get married if they don’t really love each other. He does not want things done if they don’t really have the correct meaning. Otherwise they are useless. But if the real thing is done, then the form adds impress to what is really done invisibly.

The Serpent on the Pole

Think of the serpent on the pole. That was a big lesson. They got bitten by snakes and had to look at the pole and some thought this is silly. This is ridiculous looking at some dead serpent that can save me from all these other serpents. No it was by faith they were looking and if they couldn’t look to the serpent on the pole they would never look to Jesus on the cross. Because if you want to be saved from your sins and you look up and see a person bearing sin dying on the cross, you’d think how could that person bearing sin save me for my sins? But if you can understand the principle of the serpent on the pole, you can understand the cross of Calvary. The problem was that Israel started to worship the serpent on the pole. They started worshiping it. Was God happy with them worshiping the serpent on the pole? No. He says you miss the point. The serpent on the pole was good for that purpose to embed an impression but the real thing had to be together with that. They lost the real thing and they started worshiping the serpent on the pole and what ended up happening it? Hezekiah destroyed it and ground it to powder. Today do people worship the cross? Do people put the crucifix up and actually miss the point of Calvary? They do. Whatever I’m talking of in these lessons of action, let us never fall into formalism. The problem isn’t in the form, the problem is not having the genuine article. The problem is not having the real experience with the Lord connecting it with the action.

Does God Care What We Wear?

Genesis 2:21 And the LORD God caused a deep sleep to fall upon Adam, and he slept: and he took one of his ribs, and closed up the flesh instead thereof; 22 And the rib, which the LORD God had taken from man, made he a woman, and brought her unto the man. 23 And Adam said, This [is] now bone of my bones, and flesh of my flesh: she shall be called Woman, because she was taken out of Man. 24 Therefore shall a man leave his father and his mother, and shall cleave unto his wife: and they shall be one flesh. 25 And they were both naked, the man and his wife, and were not ashamed.

We see that the clothing that you and I wear today is not the thing that Adam and Eve had. Moses was writing Genesis and he said that they were both naked and they were not ashamed. There is no shame. We see in the next chapter that whenever they were naked they didn’t know that they were naked. They weren’t conscious of their nakedness because they probably, and in fact it says in Psalm 104 that God covers Himself with light as with the garment. Like we put on garments God has light and within that light you can’t see a lot of things behind the light. Adam and Eve were made in His image and their nakedness was not seen because they did not know it. They had no shame.

Adam and Eve

Genesis 3:1 Now the serpent was more subtle than any beast of the field which the LORD God had made. And he said unto the woman, Yea, hath God said, Ye shall not eat of every tree of the garden?

Whenever there is more shame remember that Satan is more subtle than any beast of the field. He will do something here with his unashamed experience.

Genesis 3:7 after they had eaten of the tree and the eyes of them both were opened and they knew that they were naked,

So the consciousness of nakedness is a problem. They knew that they were naked and what did they do? They sewed fig leaves together and made themselves aprons.

Genesis 3:8 And they heard the voice of the LORD God walking in the garden in the cool of the day: and Adam and his wife hid themselves from the presence of the LORD God amongst the trees of the garden. 9 And the LORD God called unto Adam, and said unto him, Where [art] thou? 10 And he said, I heard thy voice in the garden, and I was afraid, because I [was] naked; and I hid myself. 11 And he said, Who told thee that thou [wast] naked? Hast thou eaten of the tree, whereof I commanded thee that thou shouldest not eat?

Now the Lord understood that they had sinned purely by the fact of their consciousness of nakedness. So the consciousness of nakedness is a result of sin. God knew that and said who told you that you were naked? You were not meant to know that. Because I have this garment of light, something is lost, they realized we are naked. When they found out that they were naked what did they do? They sewed together aprons from fig leaves. I want to know if they were then covered with aprons, why didn’t they go to God then? Because you notice that Adam hid again and said I hid because I was naked and they were covered with leaves in an apron. But Adam still understood that this covering was still nakedness, it was not covering, he understood that and so he hid.

We understand the look of an apron. In fact the Hebrew word really denotes a covering around the waist – as the apron. Everything else was showing and that was shameful. Did God care what they wore? What they were wearing, did God care? He did because in verse 21 it says;

Genesis 3:21 Unto Adam also and to his wife did the LORD God make coats of skins, and clothed them.

The Lord had a problem with what they were wearing. He say what you are wearing, I don’t like that. If you just ponder for a minute the impression that this would have made on Adam and Eve as we read in the Spirit of Prophecy that Adam wept over the first dying leaf he saw. He’s just seen the impact of his loss and it’s whelming inside of his mind. His fear, the anxiety and the stress is getting to him and then God doesn’t like what they are wearing. Do you get stressed when people don’t like what you wear? Someone says, I don’t like what you are wearing. That would stress a lot of people out.

God did not like what they were wearing and so God makes some coats of skin. It wasn’t just out of wool, it was a skin and skin being an organ an animal needs to die when the skin is taken off, it can’t live without skin. Adam who cries over a dead leaf goes with God, because God is not happy with what he is wearing, comes up to a lamb and kills it and the blood gushes. For the person who cries over a leaf dying, what does this do? The animal is dying. The blood has been spilt. Do you think this would have been a powerful lesson for Adam? Do you think this would have just seared into his mind that he could never forget the sin of the first slain animal? Then God does what you have to do to skin something and Adam is horrified and God prepares the coat and places it over his flesh. He has just seen a dead animal dying and now it is just covering him. He would have looked at that and thought wow. This is not just a coat when you are a cold, here is a coat, this is an experience of and a half. The Lord in doing this shows him what it means – the lamb slain from the foundation of the world.

Why did this lamb have to die? Why are you killing this lamb Lord? So that I can cover you. Me? Yes because I don’t like what you are wearing. On a practical level this embeds such a spiritual lesson, yes or no, the death of Christ to cover me. He would have chewed these thoughts for years. In fact for the rest of his life this would have been a predominating going through his mind that every time he saw his garment, that powerful lesson back then flashed through his mind. He would have never forgotten the love of God, never. God cares what we wear and He wants to teach us a lesson. He clothes them with a coat. A coat compared to an apron is a big difference. One is a covering; covering the limbs down to the ankles and wrists and up to the neck. You will find that in the Jewish life, this garment never went out of fashion.

Joseph and Daniel

Joseph was in Egypt and Potiphar’s wife, grabbed him and he was already the head of the house, He wasn’t just there a couple of days. He was already there for a long time and at the head of Potiphar’s house Joseph comes in, the woman wants Joseph to sleep with her and she grabs his coat. He had a coat. The Egyptians didn’t wear coats they wore aprons. But Joseph wore a coat. We see it right up to the time of Daniel. The Babylonians wore Babylonish garments. What did the three worthies that were put in the fiery furnace wear? What does the Bible tell us? It says that they had coats. And they had hosen or pants and hats and all the other garments. They didn’t worry about the heat, it saved them a little bit, actually the Lord saved them but no doubt not a smell of smoke was on their garments when they came out. If you see what the firemen wear is probably something similar but they just need the protection of the Lord too when they go into the fires.

From Adam to Joseph to Daniel, they all wore coats. They didn’t go out of fashion. There is a symbolic meaning if we read Isaiah 61 we see that God illustrates clothing with a symbolic lesson. If we want to get the symbolic lesson, then why would we negate the token of that symbolic of that lesson?

Isaiah 61:10 I will greatly rejoice in the LORD, my soul shall be joyful in my God; for he hath clothed me with the garments of salvation, he hath covered me with the robe of righteousness, as a bridegroom decketh [himself] with ornaments, and as a bride adorneth [herself] with her jewels.

What does a robe depict in your mind? When you have your bathroom robe, how big is it? How far should it cover compared to an apron? Here the Lord is saying I will clothe you with righteousness. This is symbolic. What we wear is symbolic of the gospel. Look at Luke 8:27 where we see an experience where Jesus and the disciples have crossed the sea of Galilee and have been through the storm in the boat and as they have come out of the storm by the grace of God, they come to the other side and they hop out and there are the demoniacs, demon possessed individuals,

Luke 8:27 And when he went forth to land, there met him out of the city a certain man, which had devils long time, and ware no clothes, neither abode in [any] house, but in the tombs.

This person who is devil possessed had no clothes on. Notice sin is always connected with nakedness and shame and here is a man who has no clothes on. The devil worshipers in the Solomon Island are not allowed to wear clothes. If the devil worshipers wear clothes and have to go to hospital, the hospital says you have to wear clothes and after they spend a certain amount of days cleansing themselves for putting clothes on. So who wants you naked? God or Satan? Satan wants us naked and God wants us clothed.

Here is this man and he’s got devils in him and he just happens to be naked because that’s what Satan wants. He does not like covering because he knows what it symbolizes and we know the story that Jesus comes and helps him and those in the city lost all their pigs as they wanted to know what exactly was going on.

Luke 8:35 Then they went out to see what was done; and came to Jesus, and found the man, out of whom the devils were departed, sitting at the feet of Jesus, clothed, and in his right mind: and they were afraid.

What is connected with being devil possessed? Being naked and what is connected with having a right mind? Being clothed. Jesus could have said I don’t need to clothe you because you are covered with my righteousness now so you can just wear what you want, it’s symbolic. No he was clothed in fact the Bible says clothe the naked. That’s part of the gospel ministry.

The problem is today that people like to be naked so then you go and try to encourage people who like to be naked to be clothed. In Testimonies Volume 6 there is a lesson.

The dress of Christ’s followers should be symbolic. In all things we are to be representatives of Him. Our appearance in every respect should be characterized by neatness, modesty, and purity. {6T 96.2}

What is that dress? It’s symbolic. Like every other symbolic thing in the Bible, if we defile the symbol, does that have effect on our salvation? Yes. Many say it does not matter what we wear, it does not matter if the Jews were circumcised, it does not matter if you are baptized, it doest matter if you put yeast in the bread and it does not matter any symbol in the Bible. We need to understand that these are symbolic and we need to be a representation of what God is doing inside because dress is the index of our hearts.

A persons character is judged by the style of dress. Have you ever heard the statement don’t judge a book by its cover? Have you ever heard that? The problem is we do. You can’t tell people don’t judge a book by its cover. The problem is we do judge books by their cover. You can’t get away from that. If someone would say look, as long as we have an internal connection with the Lord and our love for the Lord, then what we do externally doesn’t really matter. Jesus addressed the situation. There is a problem with external measures if the internal isn’t met up with it.

Mathew 23:25 Woe unto you, scribes and Pharisees, hypocrites! for ye make clean the outside of the cup and of the platter, but within they are full of extortion and excess.

What’s the problem? They made the outside look good but the inside was terrible. Because of that, then it matters what is inside.

Matthew 23:26 [Thou] blind Pharisee, cleanse first that [which is] within the cup and platter, that the outside of them may be clean also.

Clean your inside so that it will be good on the outside. Is Christ saying that it doesn’t matter what is on the external? He’s not saying that at all. He is saying that the internal will produce the external. If you have an orange tree that never yielded oranges, you’d say, well at least on the inside it is an orange tree. Unless it has an outside, it is actually useless. Christ is saying, cleanse the inside so that the outside will be clean. In other words, He wants the outside clean. He wants the outside to match what He is doing internally. That is what He wants. God cares what we wear. It is not just about being stark naked, it is about having inappropriate dressing. 1 Chronicles 19 tells us of a situation that brought shame to David’s army.

David’s Men

1 Chronicles 10:4 Wherefore Hanun took David’s servants, and shaved off the one half of their beards, and cut off their garments in the middle, [even] to their buttocks, and sent them away. 5 When they told [it] unto David, he sent to meet them, because the men were greatly ashamed: and the king said, Tarry at Jericho until your beards be grown, and [then] return.

These men have half their beards gone and their garments were cut right up so you could just see the buttocks. That’s the fashion today but these men were greatly ashamed. They did not want to go out so they had to wait. They had to get new garments obviously and had to wait until their beards grow back.

A judgment of the Lord is going to be pronounced upon Babylon.

Isaiah 47:1 Come down, and sit in the dust, O virgin daughter of Babylon, sit on the ground: [there is] no throne, O daughter of the Chaldeans: for thou shalt no more be called tender and delicate. 2 Take the millstones, and grind meal: uncover thy locks, make bare the leg, uncover the thigh, pass over the rivers. 3 Thy nakedness shall be uncovered, yea, thy shame shall be seen: I will take vengeance, and I will not meet [thee as] a man.

I am going to uncover the leg. If the Lord came today He wouldn’t have to do that. They are already uncovered because the leg in the site of the Lord is nakedness. Thy nakedness shall be uncovered.

When we look at Nahum and Babylon, Nahum is prophesying against Syria to the capital of the Syrian – Nineveh. He is the prophet that went after Jonah because wherever they repented at the preaching of Jonah, they didn’t remain in a repentant state and so the Lord sent Nahum to preach before the destruction of Nineveh.

Nahum 3:5 Behold, I [am] against thee, saith the LORD of hosts; and I will discover thy skirts upon thy face, and I will show the nations thy nakedness, and the kingdoms thy shame. 6 And I will cast abominable filth upon thee, and make thee vile, and will set thee as a gazingstock.

Nakedness draws the attention of the eyes. The gazingstock and this is identified as shame. The Bible says in the Philippians 3:17 that there were people that were not going to follow the apostolic teachings example.

Philippians 3:17 Brethren, be followers together of me, and mark them which walk so as ye have us for an ensample. 18 (For many walk, of whom I have told you often, and now tell you even weeping, [that they are] the enemies of the cross of Christ: 19 Whose end [is] destruction, whose God [is their] belly, and [whose] glory [is] in their shame, who mind earthly things.)

The apostle is saying we’ve set an example for you and that example is clearly spelt out in 1 Timothy 2:19 where it talks about the women being arrayed or dressed in modest apparel. The Greek word for that is long dresses is what that word actually means. The apostle has set an example that there was to be meekness in the way we dress because the way we dress actually has an effect upon how we actually act.

Have you ever stayed all day in your pyjamas? How do you feel? Did you feel a bit lazy, a bit slothful, a bit lethargic? Why? Why, you changed your raiment into work clothes and you feel like doing what? You feel like working. You put your Sabbath attire on and you put your suit on and you feel like being proper. The way we dress has an effect upon the mind and that’s why when the demoniac was is in his right mind he was clothed. Being properly clothed has everything to do with being sane in your brain. The Apostles gave an example of that in 1 Timothy 2:19 that the ladies were to wear long flowing dresses. Then he talks about an example of other people who glory in their shame. So is it shameful to them? No, it is their glory, it is the glory.

Achan

Do you know the story of Achan? You can read in your own time in Joshua 7:1-29 and then Israel as a nation was faltering. Why? They lost the battle. Why did they lose the battle? Because somebody had an abominable thing the Bible says. He calls it an abominable thing. No one knew who had it or what it was. The Lord told Joshua get all the children of Israel in their tribes and walk through all the tribes and I will tell you what tribe it is and then once you get the tribe, you have to get all the next group of people with big families and go past them and I will tell you which it is and then the households have to line up and I will tell you which house hold it is and once you go to the house hold, I will tell you which person it is.

Joshua came to Judah and to the next house and he came to Achan and Achan said yeah, it is me. Joshua asked what have you done? Oh I saw a goodly Babylonians garment and some silver and some gold and I coveted them. You have to understand that this is nearly a 1000 years before Nebuchadnezzar was in Babylon. This was a Babylonian camp. Way back then what the Babylonians wore were knee length clothing with no sleeves and because of that, because he coveted the knee length no sleeve reality, Israel lost the battles. He said ah, it is only a Babylonians garment. Yes but God says it is an abominable thing. I gave you coats and you should always have coats The Lord said the principle of covering is everything.

Fashion is deteriorating the intellect and eating out the spirituality of our people. Obedience to fashion is pervading our Seventh-day Adventist churches and is doing more than any other power to separate our people from God. {4T 647.2}

It is doing more than any other power to separate our people from God.

I have been shown that our church rules are very deficient. All exhibitions of pride in dress, which is forbidden in the word of God, should be sufficient reason for church discipline. If there is a continuance, in face of warnings and appeals and entreaties, to still follow the perverse will, it may be regarded as proof that the heart is in no way assimilated to Christ. Self, and only self, is the object of adoration, and one such professed Christian will lead many away from God. {4T 647.2}

Here was Achan, he coveted. He liked the knee length no sleeve garment. He thought that was great and he did not understand along with the gold and silver that this was the cause of the people in the Israelite army to be killed. It is worthy of church discipline.

Dress Code

Have you ever been to a place and they say you have to have a dress code to come in? Do you scold those who own the businesses that have a dress code before you come into their places? No, you just respect it. When Gods church has a dress code, if we come in before the Lord and I must remind us that we are always before the Lord, but when we are in public especially then, we need a dress code. The children of this world are wiser in their generation than the children of light because people don’t say anything about what people dress in when they come before the Lord but the Lord cares what we wear. The Lord would love to go up to everybody who has their aprons on and take them and say I want to give you coats. But most of people say no I don’t want your coat, it is too hot. It is too convenient it is not fashionable. I don’t want your coat but I have salvation, just not your coat. The Lord cares what we wear. It is extremely Biblical that God cares what we wear.

Revelation 3 tells us of a line-up of church history and it comes to the last time period of the churches and this is Laodicea, the people of the judgment. Here the people have a very potty mentality. What does potty mean? Proud, high and mighty which thinks we know everything. We think we are rich and increased in goods and have need of nothing but what does the Lord say? You don’t know that you are poor, miserable, blind, wretched and you don’t know you are naked. But if you look in the mirror you would probably know you are naked. If we knew what God calls nakedness we would realize we are naked. We think we are just covering the private parts and that’s it.

Adam did that and he was still hiding because he was still naked. And this church when Christ comes I would counsel you to buy of me raiment that thou mayest be clothed that thou must be clothed and that the shame of our nakedness do not appear.

Armageddon

It is the time when the church has the least amount of clothes that this testimony is given on a prophetic level. Because as the outside is an index to the inward, the fact that we are spiritually naked shows that it is evidenced by the fact that we are not clothed correctly. In the seven last plagues, I don’t know if you have noticed that we had it for our scripture reading that in the battle of Armageddon in verse 15 there is a message directly. It’s sort of really odd, he goes to all the plagues of this and that disaster and this and that problem and the doctrines of devils and gatherings the whole world to this battle and the fighting and then He says, behold make sure you get your garments on. Make sure you’ve got your garments on.

Does God care what you wear? Right in the last seven plagues, make sure no one can see your shame. Spiritually yes. But how could you do it spiritually if you are not doing it physically? Which is the easier? Physically is easier. If you can’t be faithful in that which is least, how could we ever be faithful in that which is much? Dress is not the Christian faith but it testifies to the Christian faith. It testifies to it and so in the time of the destruction of this world, God is saying I care what you wear. Most people say look, Paul you are taking that scripture in Revelation that’s purely spiritual. It has nothing to do with physical. That’s spiritual to make sure you are covered with Christs righteousness. That is not physical. I believe it is both. Do you know why I believe it is both? I believe it is both because of what Isaiah 3 says. I believe that in this time God is actually saying on a physical level make sure that you are covered and on a spiritual obviously because Christ doesn’t like the outward without the inward but He likes the inwards so the outward would be there is that right?

Daughters of Zion

Isaiah 3:16 Moreover the LORD saith, Because the daughters of Zion are haughty, and walk with stretched forth necks and wanton eyes, walking and mincing [as] they go, and making a tinkling with their feet:

What’s does the Lord have a problem with? The ladies in His church – He’s got a problem with that? They walk like a fashion parade, they have their eyes wanton or seductive and all the makeup that makes wanton eyes and they walk in mincing with their high heels. The Lord says the daughters of Zion are hoity. You compare that sin with what the Apostle Paul said the Christians should be. They should adorn themselves with shame facedness and meekness and reverence having long fine garments and then compare that with the daughters of Zion.

Isaiah 3:17 Therefore the Lord will smite with a scab the crown of the head of the daughters of Zion, and the LORD will discover their secret parts.

And in the day, what day?

Isaiah 3:18 In that day the Lord will take away the bravery of [their] tinkling ornaments [about their feet], and [their] cauls, and [their] round tires like the moon,

It goes to describe the very fashionable experience in the Jewish church at the time. This is prophetic, this is prophecy.

Isaiah 3:23 The glasses, and the fine linen, and the hoods, and the veils.

3:24 And it shall come to pass, [that] instead of sweet smell there shall be stink; and instead of a girdle a rent; and instead of well set hair baldness; and instead of a stomacher a girding of sackcloth; [and] burning instead of beauty.

3:25 Thy men shall fall by the sword, and thy mighty in the war.

There is a war, here is a description of the girls prancing around in their fashionable attire and God is saying that there is going to be sores and scabs and stink and wretchedness and your men will be destroyed by the sword in war.

Isaiah 3:26 And her gates shall lament and mourn; and she [being] desolate shall sit upon the ground.

The prophecy of Isaiah 3 was presented before me as applying to these last days, and the reproofs are given to the daughters of Zion who have thought only of appearance and display. Read verse 25: “Thy men shall fall by the sword, and thy mighty in the war.” I was shown that this scripture will be strictly fulfilled. Young men and women professing to be Christians, yet having no Christian experience, and having borne no burdens and felt no individual responsibility, are to be proved. They will be brought low in the dust and will long for an experience in the things of God, which they have failed to obtain. War lifts his helmet to his brow; O God, protect Thy people now. {1T 270.1}

This prophesy is shown in a time of war that there will be such an attitude in the ladies of God, professed ladies of God with their love of fashion with the love of the Babylonian garments. God is saying you will die in the war. In the time of the war when this battle of the great day of God almighty is coming, He says make sure you’ve got your clothes on physically as well as spiritually.

What would be the mentality then of that day? When it says ‘In that day’, what day are we talking about? The last days. What is the mentality of the last days in those seven women? This is a complete mentality across the mind of women and unfortunately in support of our many men.

Isaiah 4:1 And in that day seven women shall take hold of one man, saying, We will eat our own bread, and wear our own apparel: only let us be called by thy name, to take away our reproach.

We just want to cover our physical shame so we can be Christians. That’s what the mentality will be in that day. Are we in that day? Is that your mentality that says, I want to wear what I like, I will be a Christian but I want to wear what I like?

Does God care what you wear? God does care what you wear. It cost Him His life what we wear. What we wear is a symbol of Christ righteousness and if we can’t be faithful in that which is the symbol or the token, then we won’t be faithful in much. I am not saying that just because you put on a nice garment, then you are right on the inside. No, the Pharisees could put on nice garments and were still wrong on the inside. Cleanse the inside so that the outside will be clean also. Our dress is not to bring our minds to fashion and dress and, “What are you wearing?” Our mind is not to be upon our raiment, our mind is to be the Righteousness of Christ.

If we dress so that when we see the garment, we will think of what Christ has done for me on Calvary. Christ in His Sermon on the Mount said, “Take no thought of what you will wear.” That does not mean be careless in what you wear, its saying don’t centre your mind upon fashion and garments. People say, “Well I have never thought so much about dress until I knew that the Lord wanted me to dress a certain way.” No, He does not want you to think about dress, He wants you to think of His Righteousness and if His Righteousness will cover you, then let your dress tell you that.

The Marriage Supper

Jesus gave a parable of the last days of the marriage supper and there were garments and someone came in without a garment. Did God care what he was wearing? He was kicked out. The promise is that when the bride has made herself ready internally, what will happen?

Revelation 19:7 Let us be glad and rejoice, and give honour to him: for the marriage of the Lamb is come, and his wife hath made herself ready.

19:8 And to her was granted that she should be arrayed in fine linen, clean and white: for the fine linen is the righteousness of saints.

Never doubt that our dress has nothing to do with our relationship with our Lord. It has so much to do with it and I pray we can rejoice because the marriage supper of the lamb is come and those who will be ready will be arrayed in God’s way of dressing. If we think I will be happy then but not now, God will not change who we are in heaven. He’s changing who we are now.

Like Moses said when there was idolatry and the children of Israel were dancing around the calf and they were naked and Moses said who is on the Lords side? All the Levites were on the Lord’s side. Do you want to be a Levite? Do you want to be Gods representatives on this earth? I pray that we can take this seriously and understand that God is very serious with practical lessons. That’s who He is and we need to take him for who He is.

Amen.

Posted on May 4, 2012, in Divine Service Sermons, Dress Reform, Sermons For Sabbath. Bookmark the permalink. 3 Comments.

  1. Its not 1 Timothy 2:19 its 1 Timothy 2:9.In like manner also, that women adorn themselves in modest apparel, with shamefacedness and sobriety; not with broided hair, or gold, or pearls, or costly array. My Wife and I enjoyed this sermon on sabbath.Thank you.

  1. Pingback: Hairy Legs and the Babylonish Garment | Sermons and Studies

  2. Pingback: Do You Care What You Wear? « Sabbath Sermons

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