#6 The MUSTS Of Christianity: We Must Dress Appropriately

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Photo by Charles Deluvio on Unsplash

I read a heartbreaking thing the other day in a publication called “Headline Health”. It seems that this young 31 year old woman survived the Coronavirus Pandemic. A tour guide who lived in Antalya, Turkey, she and a friend went out for a walk in nearby Duden Park after the quarantine was lifted. The dear lady decided to take a photo of herself – a “selfie” – on the edge of a cliff with the beautiful waterfalls behind her. Stepping over the safety railing she posed for her friend … slipped on the wet grass, falling off the 115 foot cliff. Her body was recovered a few hours later.

It breaks my heart. I have no idea what her status was with the Lord Jesus, but I hate to see young people leave this life so tragically and so unnecessarily. In our present day we are so “selfie” oriented. Everything is driven to ME ME ME. We are told by the networks and the media that:

YOU MATTER
Be Yourself
DO YOU

What did Jesus say? “What are you profited, if you gain the whole world, but lose your own soul?” (Matthew 16:26). When we live for ourselves, as if we were all that mattered, it is not too long before we realize this is not much of a life. We must live for Someone greater. We need to live not “selfie” driven, but “Savior” driven.

Our text today is from:

Romans 13:14 But put ye on the Lord Jesus Christ, and make not provision for the flesh, to fulfill the lusts thereof.

Do You Have A Dress Code At Your Church?

One of the questions I’m often asked by those who consider visiting our Church is “Do you have a dress code?”. What they want to know is what is the acceptable dress to come and worship with us. There is no “dress code” in that sense. I do appreciate it when both WOMEN AND MEN dress modestly. Everyone, even preachers, are susceptible to temptation. Please remember the admonition of the Apostle Paul who said:

Romans 14:13 Let us not therefore judge one another any more: but judge this rather, that {no one} put a stumbling block or an occasion to fall in his brother’s way.

If God has graced you with a beautiful body, please don’t flaunt it in front of others. We are here to look at Jesus, not at you. Let modesty and decency be in your hearts. The Scripture says “adorn yourself in modest apparel” (1 Timothy 2:9).

So do we have a “dress code”? No, not in that sense. I myself want you to be comfortable, and attentive to the Word of God. I want everyone to be focused on the Lord Jesus Christ. I want the Holy Spirit to be here, and every soul willing to heed His Word. That is what is in my heart. All eyes on Jesus. All eyes are on You, Lord!

Put On Or Clothe Yourselves In Righteousness

Romans 13:14 But put ye on the Lord Jesus Christ

There is a “Heavenly Dress Code” that we all must seek – else we will not enter Heaven but hell following this life. In our world we define people as “good” or “bad” based on how they behave in civilized society. Of course, we define “civilized” based on what WE think is “civilized”. We hear statements like,

“He was a GOOD man”, or
“She was a GOOD woman”

As a Pastor having officiated many, many funerals I have heard statements like:

Romans 13:8-13 Owe no man any thing, but to love one another: for he that loveth another hath fulfilled the law. 9 For this, Thou shalt not commit adultery, Thou shalt not kill, Thou shalt not steal, Thou shalt not bear false witness, Thou shalt not covet; and if there be any other commandment, it is briefly comprehended in this saying, namely, Thou Shalt Love Thy Neighbor As Thyself. 10 Love worketh no ill to his neighbor: therefore love is the fulfilling of the law. 11 And that, knowing the time, that now it is high time to awake out of sleep: for now is our salvation nearer than when we believed. 12 The night is far spent, the day is at hand: let us therefore cast off the works of darkness, and let us put on the armor of light. 13 Let us walk honestly, as in the day; not in rioting and drunkenness, not in chambering and wantonness, not in strife and envying.”If anyone deserved to go to Heaven, he did.”, and
“Heaven just gained an angel today, for my mom was an angel!”

We base our comparison of “good enough for Heaven” based on how one human stacks up when compared to another human. We base our thoughts of who is good and who is bad on comparing people to people. Certainly there are people who are much more moral (according to man) than others. Two people come to my mind when I think of famous people going to Heaven:

Billy Graham, and
Mother Teresa

We think in ourselves, “Well, if anyone deserved Heaven, these two would. One preached and led others to Christ, whereas the other ministered to the poorest of the poor. Surely they are in Heaven. It may surprise you, though, to understand that Heaven belongs to God – and,

Only those who are “good” in comparison
to God will be in Heaven.

It is God Who sets the standards of “good” and “evil”. So Who is “good” in comparison with God? The Bible says:

1 Samuel 2:2 There is none holy as the LORD…

God alone is the Highest Holy. Goodness is relative among humanity, but when we as humans are compared to God the Bible declares:

Romans 3:10-19 10 As it is written, There is none righteous, no, not one: 11 There is none that understandeth, there is none that seeketh after God. 12 They are all gone out of the way, they are together become unprofitable; there is none that doeth good, no, not one. 13 Their throat is an open sepulcher; with their tongues they have used deceit; the poison of asps is under their lips: 14 Whose mouth is full of cursing and bitterness: 15 Their feet are swift to shed blood: 16 Destruction and misery are in their ways: 17 And the way of peace have they not known: 18 There is no fear of God before their eyes. 19 Now we know that what things soever the law saith, it saith to them who are under the law: that every mouth may be stopped, and all the world may become guilty before God.

God specifically gave Israel the Law of Moses to show humanity that – in comparison with God – there are none good. The Prophet Isaiah went even farther when he spoke of the goodness of God. Looking into Heaven the Prophet saw:

Isaiah 6:1-5 … I saw also the Lord sitting upon a throne, high and lifted up, and his train filled the temple. 2 Above it stood the seraphims: each one had six wings; with twain he covered his face, and with twain he covered his feet, and with twain he did fly. 3 And one cried unto another, and said, Holy, holy, holy, is the Lord of hosts: the whole earth is full of his glory. 4 And the posts of the door moved at the voice of him that cried, and the house was filled with smoke. 5 Then said I, Woe is me! for I am undone; because I am a man of unclean lips, and I dwell in the midst of a people of unclean lips: for mine eyes have seen the King, the Lord of hosts.

Looking into Heaven and seeing God you would think that Isaiah would be overjoyed. You would be wrong. Looking into Heaven that Prophet suddenly realized with crystal clarity that in comparison to God there are none of us right nor righteous. This same Prophet would later say:

Isaiah 64:6-7 But we are all as an unclean thing, and all our righteousnesses are as filthy rags; and we all do fade as a leaf; and our iniquities, like the wind, have taken us away. 7 And there is none that calleth upon thy name, that stirreth up himself to take hold of thee: for thou hast hid thy face from us, and hast consumed us, because of our iniquities.

What we think is a fine dress coat and beautiful slacks, or a glittering formal gown, is but in comparison to God’s goodness “filthy rags”. I have often found brand new slacks or shirts at a local Goodwill store, many times with the price tags still hanging on them. I often wondered why someone would donate brand new clothing to Goodwill. The answer is quite simple. To the owner those items of clothing, though apparently without blemish, were under par, low value, and not worthy to keep. To me the clothing is beautiful and new. To the owner who gave it away, it was “filthy rags”. When we look at ourselves and compare yourself to others around you then we think “I’m a pretty good person”. But if we were to look into Heaven as Isaiah did we would realize – we do not measure up to God. Our righteousness is as filthy rags compared to God.

A young man came to Jesus one day and called our Lord “Good teacher”. Jesus immediately replied:

Matthew 19:17 … Why callest thou me good? there is none good but one, that is, God: but if thou wilt enter into life, keep the commandments.

Now Jesus did not mean that He was not good. The Bible tells us that Jesus Christ is God become man. Jesus is the prophesied Messiah of whom Isaiah said:

Isaiah 7:14 … the Lord himself shall give you a sign; Behold, a virgin shall conceive, and bear a son, and shall call his name Immanuel.

Of Whom Matthew wrote:

Matthew 1:23 Behold, a virgin shall be with child, and shall bring forth a son, and they shall call his name Emmanuel, which being interpreted is, God with us.

Jesus Christ is indeed God, and as God is “good”. Jesus rejected the title “Good Teacher” because the young man addressing Him did not see Jesus as John saw Jesus in:

Revelation 1:8 … I am Alpha and Omega, the beginning and the ending, saith the Lord, which is, and which was, and which is to come, the Almighty.

Jesus is the Eternal Word of God, in the “beginning with God, Who is God” (John 1:1-3).

Jesus is the One Who told the Pharisees:

John 8:58 … Verily, verily I say unto you, before Abraham was, I am!

Only God is good. Jesus is God, but this young man did not think so – and thus Jesus rejected the title of “good”. Beloved, no one is good but God. No one is righteous but God. This is why we need Jesus. Jesus Christ came from Heaven to this earth, the Son of God, begotten as human for us. He is the “Only Begotten”. Jesus Christ “Died for all”. He took the penalty of sin on Himself, dying for our sins, paying our debt before God.

We are all sinners, lost and undone. We must be stripped of our sins, and covered in Jesus Christ. “Put ye on the Lord Jesus Christ” means to put on His righteousness by faith. To receive Him as Savior and Lord. The Apostle said:

1 Thessalonians 5:9-10 For God hath not appointed us to wrath, but to obtain salvation by our Lord Jesus Christ, 10 Who died for us, that, whether we wake or sleep, we should live together with him.

Jesus Christ died for us. He died for whosoever would believe in Him. If you think yourself to be righteous apart from Christ you are absolutely wrong. One of the most rigidly strict Pharisees of all time was a man named Saul. Saul at one time persecuted the Church, believing these “Christians” to be but a cult. Saul would later meet Jesus Christ on Damascus Road, and write:

Philippians 3:3-10 … we are the circumcision, which worship God in the spirit, and rejoice in Christ Jesus, and have no confidence in the flesh. 4 Though I might also have confidence in the flesh. If any other man thinketh that he hath whereof he might trust in the flesh, I more: 5 Circumcised the eighth day, of the stock of Israel, of the tribe of Benjamin, an Hebrew of the Hebrews; as touching the law, a Pharisee; 6 Concerning zeal, persecuting the church; touching the righteousness which is in the law, blameless. 7 But what things were gain to me, those I counted loss for Christ. 8 Yea doubtless, and I count all things but loss for the excellency of the knowledge of Christ Jesus my Lord: for whom I have suffered the loss of all things, and do count them but dung, that I may win Christ, 9 And be found in him, not having mine own righteousness, which is of the law, but that which is through the faith of Christ, the righteousness which is of God by faith: 10 That I may know him, and the power of his resurrection, and the fellowship of his sufferings, being made conformable unto his death;

The “righteousness which is by the Law” only externally makes us look good. To our eyes the Pharisee, just like all other religious people. look “good”. But when God looks at us He does not see the outside, but the heart, the inner man. We desperately need Jesus Christ. We need to believe on Him, and trust Him. We need “not mine own righteousness, but the righteousness which is of God by faith in Jesus Christ”. Nothing else will save.

Romans 5:8-11 But God commendeth his love toward us, in that, while we were yet sinners, Christ died for us. 9 Much more then, being now justified by his blood, we shall be saved from wrath through him. 10 For if, when we were enemies, we were reconciled to God by the death of his Son, much more, being reconciled, we shall be saved by his life. 11 And not only so, but we also joy in God through our Lord Jesus Christ, by whom we have now received the atonement.

We are saved when we “put on the Lord Jesus Christ”. We receive Jesus as both “Lord” and “Christ” or Savior. Because He died, I will live. Because He paid for my sins on Calvary I stand in a right and a righteous relationship with God my Father. Because the Son gave Himself for me, I in turn am now a “Son of God”.

John 1:12 But as many as received {the Lord Jesus Christ}, to them gave he power to become the sons of God, even to them that believe on his name:

I “Once” Put On The Lord Jesus Christ To Be Saved.
I “Daily” Put On The Lord Jesus Christ To Be Sanctified.

Romans 13:14 But put ye on the Lord Jesus Christ, and make not provision for the flesh, to fulfill the lusts thereof.

We are saved by faith in the Lord Jesus Christ, by faith in the work He did on Calvary and at the empty tomb. But we are “separated” or “sanctified” by daily taking off the old way of life, and by daily putting on the new way of life. We are to follow or imitate Jesus Christ. We as God’s children are called to be followers of God, as dear children” (Ephesians 5:1). Jesus said “Follow Me”:

Matthew 4:19 … Follow me, and I will make you fishers of men.
Matthew 8:22 … Follow me; and let the dead bury their dead.
Matthew 16:24 … take up your Cross, and follow Me.
Matthew 19:21 … sell all you have, and come, follow Me.

Though we as Christians are not saved by keeping the Law, once we are saved we are to be obedient to the moral law of God. Jesus described this as “being light” and “being salt”. Jesus tells His Church:

Matthew 5:13 Ye are the salt of the earth: but if the salt have lost his savor, wherewith shall it be salted? it is thenceforth good for nothing, but to be cast out, and to be trodden under foot of men.

Matthew 5:14-16 … Ye are the light of the world. A city that is set on an hill cannot be hid. 15 Neither do men light a candle, and put it under a bushel, but on a candlestick; and it giveth light unto all that are in the house. 16 Let your light so shine before men, that they may see your good works, and glorify your Father which is in heaven.

I read something the other day – I forget who said it – which made the statement “God is not as angry at America for its sin as He is angry at His Church”. Beloved, this is so very true. Saved by the Blood of Christ, the Christian is to daily “put on the Lord Jesus Christ”. We are to follow Him as Lord and Savior. We are to take off the old filthy clothing we had on when we were lost, and put on that which Christ leads us to. The Apostle says:

Ephesians 4:1-3, 17, 20-32 I therefore, the prisoner of the Lord, beseech you that ye walk worthy of the vocation wherewith ye are called, 2 With all lowliness and meekness, with longsuffering, forbearing one another in love; 3 Endeavoring to keep the unity of the Spirit in the bond of peace. … 17 This I say therefore, and testify in the Lord, that ye henceforth walk not as other Gentiles walk, in the vanity of their mind, … ye have not so learned Christ; 21 If so be that ye have heard him, and have been taught by him, as the truth is in Jesus: 22 That ye put off concerning the former {way of life} the old man, which is corrupt according to the deceitful lusts; 23 And be renewed in the spirit of your mind; 24 And that ye put on the new man, which after God is created in righteousness and true holiness. 25 Wherefore putting away lying, speak every man truth with his neighbor: for we are members one of another. 26 Be ye angry, and sin not: let not the sun go down upon your wrath: 27 Neither give place to the devil. 28 Let him that stole steal no more: but rather let him labor, working with his hands the thing which is good, that he may have to give to him that needeth. 29 Let no corrupt communication proceed out of your mouth, but that which is good to the use of edifying, that it may minister grace unto the hearers. 30 And grieve not the holy Spirit of God, whereby ye are sealed unto the day of redemption. 31 Let all bitterness, and wrath, and anger, and clamor, and evil speaking, be put away from you, with all malice: 32 And be ye kind one to another, tenderhearted, forgiving one another, even as God for Christ’s sake hath forgiven you.

When Christ enters your life by faith, your external life is to change as well. You are “born again”, no longer that old man, but are now a “new man”, created in Christ Jesus to do good works (Ephesians 2:10). You are no longer part of the lost world, dominated by sin and Satan. You are of the Family of God, loved of God, indwelt of God.

The Christian daily “puts on” a new set of clothing. We are now to be clothed in righteousness, clothed as children of the King of Kings and Lord of Lords. We “put on the new man, which is renewed in knowledge after the image of Him that created him (Colossians 3:10). Christian, you are to put on Love (Colossians 3:14). We are to put away darkness, and all evil deeds. Jesus Christ is our Lord, and we love others as He has loved us.

Romans 13:14 But put ye on the Lord Jesus Christ, and make not provision for the flesh, to fulfill the lusts thereof.

In the previous context the Apostle said:

Romans 13:8-13 Owe no man any thing, but to love one another: for he that loveth another hath fulfilled the law. 9 For this, Thou shalt not commit adultery, Thou shalt not kill, Thou shalt not steal, Thou shalt not bear false witness, Thou shalt not covet; and if there be any other commandment, it is briefly comprehended in this saying, namely, Thou Shalt Love Thy Neighbor As Thyself. 10 Love worketh no ill to his neighbor: therefore love is the fulfilling of the law. 11 And that, knowing the time, that now it is high time to awake out of sleep: for now is our salvation nearer than when we believed. 12 The night is far spent, the day is at hand: let us therefore cast off the works of darkness, and let us put on the armor of light. 13 Let us walk honestly, as in the day; not in rioting and drunkenness, not in chambering and wantonness, not in strife and envying.

The Christian is a changed creature. We want to imitate Christ. When we fail our Lord and drift into sin, we put that sin away, calling upon the Name of the Lord. The Christian way of life is one repentance unto salvation, and a daily repentance unto sanctification. We are followers of God as dear Children. We belong to Jesus, and act like we belong to Jesus. We do not wallow on sin and in selfishness.

We live to the glory of God!

If America is to be revived and claimed for Christ, we must “put on the Lord Jesus Christ”. Christians unite! Join together with Christ and for Christ to the glory of God. And Beloved, if Christ is not your Lord and Savior, today is the day to meet Him. Oh how He loves you! May God touch your hearts with His Word and His Spirit. Amen and Amen!

About bibleteacherorg

A searching Pastor, I am looking for a people who love the Lord and love one another. Daily I pray for the Church. Most of what the world sees today is not the Church, but clubs pretending to be the Church. God is calling to Himself a people willing to be righteous, not self righteous, serving not served. I am called to pastor God's people, those who want to change the world by willingly and willfully following Jesus Christ. Only God is able to change the world, and we must follow His Christ. He is able! Praise His Name! Come quickly Lord Jesus!
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