- Series: November 2015
- Scripture: Revelation 3:14
Clothes enable one to be presentable in the eyes of others, as when people go for job interviews and they dress well in order to create a good impression on the employers. Regardless of good academic and professional credentials on one’s curriculum vitae (CV), one needs to look presentable before recruiters. The Vatican does not allow people dressed in mini-skirts, shorts or wearing sleeveless tops to see the Pope. In the law courts of the land, one has to dress in a certain way in order to approach the Judge. Even in funerals, people are required to dress decently in honour of the dead. That is why God is a dressmaker. He will not be outdone by the Vatican which has a dress code for approaching the papacy. God requires a change of garment before one can enter into the New Jerusalem. Already in the Garden of Eden, God provided a garment for Adam and Eve after they fell. But we notice that before the fall, these people were clothed in a veil of holiness in which they could not see their own nakedness. Then a change of garment took place because of the fall. Initially, the couple tried fig leaves but those were not acceptable before God. Fig leaves condemned them before a Holy God. Then a lamb had to be slain, and the sheepskins thereof used to make coats for Adam and Eve. Blood of the lamb had to be shed for them to be clothed. In creating human beings, God made the human body as a garment. And as garments are changed at designated times, we are also experiencing a body change through the process of the rapture. On the opposite side, we see denominational Pastors calling on their women to wear mini-skirts to church, and to put no underwear in order to satisfy their own lust demons raging in their flesh. They miss the real change of garment which is required by the Lord. The apostle James warns against looking at the outward form of a man. The clothes, appearance, flesh, and physical attributes should never be used to judge people. To prove the point that human beings respect appearances, one man went to a restaurant dressed in torn clothes which looked filthy. All the restaurants refused to let him order a meal despite the fact that he had the money to pay for the food. The man left and came back dressed up properly and approached the same restaurants and they accepted him. As he stepped out of his expensive and sporty car, the same people who turned him down when he was dressed in rags began to treat him well and even announced that they had reserved a table for him. Yes, clothes project an image. That is the reason why God wants to project His image in us. The seven sons of Jesse looked much better and more eligible for being anointed as king of Israel than David who was the real person God was looking for. David’s appearance did not promote his candidacy for the throne. The elder brothers looked much better as heirs to the throne. That is why God called the prophet Samuel one side for a private interview. God told him not to consider looks, which really deceive. The Prophet had to be called for a private talk with God in a restaurant when he looked at the drunk woman dressed in shorts and condemned her in his heart. Although the woman was dressed badly, God had planted His seed of predestination insider her heart and she was God’s child. Despite the poor physical and outward appearance, David experienced a change of garments when he was anointed king. He left the garments of a shepherd and took on the garments of a king. Even Job’s garment changed to become black when his body was suffering from boils. His complexion changed from olive colour to black. In his suffering, Job likened himself to the animal kingdom. He says that he is a brother to dragons and a companion to owls. Job is proving an affinity between the human body and the animal kingdom, for indeed the human body is not different from the animal body. No wonder when Lazarus stood begging at the gate of the rich man, dogs came and licked the poor man’s wounds. A dog comes from the animal kingdom, and it knew how to lick the wounds of Lazarus. After all, saliva contains healing chemicals which help the body fight infections. In the 19th chapter of Job, we see the patriarch rising from the ashes with the revelation that the redeemer lives. Yet we see him about 10 chapters later speaking the dialect of despair. Job questions God and blames Him for his misfortunes. Job was looking at the garment. He was looking at his body as it wasted away. He was not looking at the promise given to him by revelation in the 19th chapter of the same book. Joseph had 7 garments in his life. The first one was given to him by his father Jacob. That first garment was a coat of 7 colours, which speak of the seven church ages. The first garment was taken from him and put under the blood and presented to Jacob when the brothers lied about his death. It is a good thing that the coat went back to the father. It is a good thing that the coat had been dipped in the blood of an innocent animal. The second garment of Joseph was that of slavery in a gentile nation. When Joseph was sold to the Ishmaelites, he went down to Egypt as a slave wearing a garment of slavery. But when he arrived in Potiphar’s house, he became a servant. So the slavery garment was put away and that of a servant was again worn as the third garment so far. While on his post of duty as a servant, David is wrongly accused and lands up in jail. There in jail, Joseph wears the 4th garment of prison attire. From prison, Joseph is elevated to become the right hand of Pharaoh and is given the garments of a prince in Egypt at the 5th stage. Thereafter, he dies in Egypt and moves to the garment of death at the 6th stage. Finally, when Christ rose up from the dead on resurrection morning, Joseph woke up with him to paradise. Because of mere clothing, the Lord Jesus Christ had to send the disciples away because they would have stumbled upon seeing the Lord with a woman of ill fame – perhaps she was dressed in a mini-skirt. But the same woman received her change of garment, as did Esther, when she left the clothes of being an orphan to wear the apparel of a Queen before again changing to sackcloth and ashes. Jonathan gives David his own Princely garment as an award for being an overcomer. In 1st Thesalonians 4:16, as the Lord comes down with a shout, voice and trump of God, we receive a body change which is just another way of experiencing a change of garments. The first Adam was created as a grown up man but the second Adam came as a child who had to grow to 30 years before starting his life in ministry. God could have made the Lord Jesus Christ to appear as a grown up man like Adam did, but we see God showing us that He is able to see us through all the stages of life as we struggle with lusts of the flesh and the eyes and pride of life. As the garment of the flesh hangs around us, God is able to see us through. Namaan had two garments. The first garment of leprosy and the second garment of a general of the army were both on the same person. God wanted to change his leprosy garment and he sent word by a servant of Elisha the prophet.
The servant instructs Namaan to wash 7 times in the dirty waters of Jordan river. The servant only repeats the words of Elisha to Namaan, just as the five-fold ministry repeats the words of the Prophet. The change of garment in Namaan came from the spoken word ministry of the servants, who were actually God’s grace to the leprous general.
The 7 dippings in Jordan river remind us of the 7 steps in the stature of a perfect man. As Namaan compares the rivers in Damascus called Abana and Pharphar, we see how denominations fight to prove that there is also a move of God in their ranks. But God has only one provided way and He will use that way alone.