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The Standard of Our Dressing


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Perilous Times!! These are perilous times indeed, and there are clouds of witnesses all around to confirm this truth.

 

11 Lest Satan should get an advantage of us: for we are not ignorant of his devices. 2 Corinthians 2:11

That is the reason us why God gathered us into tis holy assembly. That is why God had brought us to this convention, to reveal to us the devices of Satan. If he cannot tempt you to commit some outrageous sins, he would beguile you to dress in a way to appear like one of his children. He will try to bring you back to the things you have left behind. The subject of our teaching this morning is ‘the standard of our dressing.’  The Bible tells us that the children of God are manifest and so also are the children of the devil. You can easily identify the children of God by the way they dress, so also you can identify the children of the devil by the way they dress. The distinction is obvious. The difference is clear. But we thank God that he does not leave us in abeyance. We know out to dress like the children, and how the children of the devil dresses.

 

23 Keep thy heart with all diligence; for out of it are the issues of life. Proverbs 4:23

When a child of God begins to dress like the child of the devil, there is something basically wrong. That is why the Bible is warning us that we should keep our heart diligently for out of it are the issues of life, because the outward life and actions are regulated by the inward conditions. When one comes to God as a sinner, he hears the word of God, he goes on his knees and if he exercise faith in the word of God he is saved, and his life is changed, and right from the time of salvation, he becomes a new creature in Jesus Christ. Jesus Christ lives in him and he also dwells in Christ. He no longer wants the questionable things of the world. The dictation of Satan is shunned. He is no longer dominated as the worldly people are dominated; he wants to show the beauty of Jesus Christ in all he does. He wants the beauty of Jesus Christ to be seen.

 

31 Whether therefore ye eat, or drink, or whatsoever ye do, do all to the glory of God. 1 Corinthians 10:31

He wants to do things to the glory of God, in eating he wants the glory of God to be seen, in drinking, he wants the glory of God to be seen. In his dress, he wants to show the glory of God, by his hair-do, he wants the glory of God to appear. In cutting of his hair as a man, he wants the glory of God to be seen. In all his deportments he wants to show the glory of God that Christ may be seen in him. May the Lord help us that we may show the glory of God in all that we do? That is when we become a child of God and we live in Christ and Christ lives in us.

16 For all that is in the world, the lust of the flesh, and the lust of the eyes, and the pride of life, is not of the Father, but is of the world. 1 John 2:16

Pride! Pride is the opposite of humility. The pride of life! the pride of life! Pride is a terrible thing. It is pride that made Satan to be exalted above the star of God, but humility is a virtue of the children of God. Humility is embedded in the heart of a saved soul. A saved soul shuns anything that have tendency that makes him proud. God hates pride; he knows the pride afar off. Let us look at the daughters of Zion!

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:
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.
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,
19 The chains, and the bracelets, and the mufflers,
20 The bonnets, and the ornaments of the legs, and the headbands, and the tablets, and the earrings,
21 The rings, and nose jewels,
22 The changeable suits of apparel, and the mantles, and the wimples, and the crisping pins,
23 The glasses, and the fine linen, and the hoods, and the vails.
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. Isaiah 3:16-24

This is serious. The daughters of Zion were the female children of Israel during the time of Isaiah. The situation was so bad, that it was abominable in the sight of God. They have ornaments from the crown of their head to the feet. Let consider verse 17

 

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. Isaiah 3:17

They have ornaments on their legs, and they would not cover the ornaments with their clothes, thereby their legs were exposed, they wanted people to see their legs. What type of dress were they wearing then? – Miniskirts! Miniskirts that would not cover their legs, such that men would see their legs, to see how straight their legs were. And the Lord said he would discover their secret parts, the last sentence of v.17 – The Lord will discover their secret parts. This is very serious. The Lord sent Isaiah to them, to warn them and to tell them what he was going to do. Isaiah went to tell them. God told him instead of sweet smell, there would be a stink, and instead of girdle there would be a rent. That is judgement of God for the immodest dress of the daughters of Zion. Should we follow the daughters of Zion in our dresses, God forbids that we should go back to the things we have left behind. The type of dresses of the daughters of Zion is not what we should imitate; probably we are ashamed of Christ. May be we are ashamed the standard of the gospel, may be that is why we want to copy the dressing of the people of the world. We should not covet anything that is worldly; we should not follow the world.

 

38 Whosoever therefore shall be ashamed of me and of my words in this adulterous and sinful generation; of him also shall the Son of man be ashamed, when he cometh in the glory of his Father with the holy angels. Mark 8:38

As children of God we have a glorious heritage, we should uphold, and the gospel of Jesus Christ as preached by Apostolic Faith is gaining ground daily. But we cannot belong to two kingdoms; you cannot belong to the kingdom of God and belong of the devil. You cannot hold God with hand and Devil with another hand. A servant cannot serve two masters. We want to remain the children of God. God forbid that we should go back to Satan.

 

5 The woman shall not wear that which pertaineth unto a man, neither shall a man put on a woman's garment: for all that do so are abomination unto the LORD thy God. Deuteronomy 22:5

God gave a warning here that we should adhere to. The word of God is very specific here, and every child of God should obey it, except in very rare cases or special cases which are very rare or otherwise there is nothing preventing a child of God from obeying the commandment of God on the standard of our dressing. Go to the world today, go to the streets, it seem that people are not interested in how to dress and how to undress. It is fashion nowadays for a woman to wear dresses that belong to men, trousers, shorts, immodest tight dress, immodest garments, and generally scanty dresses. These are what people are interested in these days, but these are not for a child of God because they are abominable in the sight of God, and the word of God warns us to abstain from anything that has the appearance of evil. Ladies wear trousers like men to parties, so much that you cannot discern a man from a woman. The latest is for ladies to wear men’s garments, and this is very bad, and it is abomination in the sight of God because it is the extreme of exposition of lust. God does not like it.

 

23 And if ye will not be reformed by me by these things, but will walk contrary unto me;
24 Then will I also walk contrary unto you, and will punish you yet seven times for your sins. Leviticus 26:23-24

Whatever God hates, we should abhor. We do not want God to walk contrary to us, may the Lord God have mercy on us. The latest style is for women to split their skirts. Go to the streets, you will find women with slits in the skirts both in the front and the back. There is a local name called – ‘Shaba’. When a woman vents her mini skirt, a skirt that is already mini, what then do you think about it? It is terrible bad, some even slit the skirt all the way to waist – an abomination so that when they walk you can see part of the secret parts. Part of the body which should be covered - should these things be imitated by the children of God? Parents also sow these types of dresses for their children. Some parents are to be blamed for this, because they see their grown up children wearing these dressed and failed to check them. Our problem is lack of consecration; it takes consecration to abide with the rules of God.

 

32 Give none offence, neither to the Jews, nor to the Gentiles, nor to the church of God: 1 Corinthians 10:32

We should not be bad examples. Bad examples should not be introduced into the house of God. We shepherds, while Lord Jesus is the Lord of the gospel, and I am speaking on behalf of the master. We pastors should make concerted effort to prevent these ugly trends of things in the church.

 

8 Look to yourselves, that we lose not those things which we have wrought, but that we receive a full reward.
9 Whosoever transgresseth, and abideth not in the doctrine of Christ, hath not God. He that abideth in the doctrine of Christ, he hath both the Father and the Son.
10 If there come any unto you, and bring not this doctrine, receive him not into your house, neither bid him God speed:
11 For he that biddeth him God speed is partaker of his evil deeds. 2 John 1:8-11

If anybody is in the ministry and tend to introduce this fashion into the gospel, into the church, we should show the person the way out. It is something that we should not cultivate; there should be no leniency for such habits. Should we open our eyes and let the world creep into the church? The Gospel is precious and it our heritage and we should secure it. The Gospel of Jesus Christ, cost Jesus Christ something, it cost him his life, and it has cost our leaders precious things. It has cost them a lot of fortune, therefore it is the responsibility that we should undertake, we should protect the gospel, and we should be vigilant. It seems that our young ladies do not understand what we stand for? It seems that they do not understand the word of God, when someone comes before us to sing ‘I must needs go home by the way of the cross’ and she does not dress properly, where is the cross that she is bearing, where is the cross that she is carrying. It is obvious that the words of that song is not understood by the singer, or when someone leads small children to this platform, and did not dress the way a child of God should dress, what example is she laying, what example is she showing others to follow? May the Lord help us?

 

19 What? know ye not that your body is the temple of the Holy Ghost which is in you, which ye have of God, and ye are not your own?
20 For ye are bought with a price: therefore glorify God in your body, and in your spirit, which are God's. 1 Corinthians 6:19-20

If you are saved, you belong to Christ, you are bought with a precious price, you are not your own, you belong to someone who is Jesus Christ, and you cannot do what you like, you cannot say you have your body and can dress any how if you are of Christ. You are to dress in a way that glorifies, God. You have to dress in a way that will propagate the gospel. You have to dress in a way that the world will respect the gospel.

 

2 While they behold your chaste conversation coupled with fear.
3 Whose adorning let it not be that outward adorning of plaiting the hair, and of wearing of gold, or of putting on of apparel; 1 Peter 3:2-3

Using of gold. We do not have to covet the use of gold, because God has prepared a place for us where we can walk on the streets of gold. We do not have to run after fashion of using ornament s of gold, or silver or such things, because God had provided things more beautiful more attractive for us in heaven. Another thing is the painting of the body, and some years they call it bleaching, and is now called something else. We have someone who did it years before

 

30 And when Jehu was come to Jezreel, Jezebel heard of it; and she painted her face, and tired her head, and looked out at a window. 2 Kings 9:30

Jezebel painted her face. Is that not what people do today, they call it toning, they tone the face and the body, they do not call it bleaching any more. Should we imitate Jezebel? Jezebel was a bad character; she was the woman that introduced the worship of Baal to the kingdom of Israel. Anything that pertained to Jezebel should be abhorred by children of God. We have a standard; Standard of our dressing is the subject of this teaching. We have a standard – we have to keep that standard that teaches not to dress like the worldly people, but to dress like the children of God. What is that standard is immodesty and decency. Not to dress to the extreme, to dress in a way that the gospel of Jesus Christ will be respected, we have to keep in the middle of the road as it were, not going to the extreme towards the right and not to the extreme towards the left. Not to dress excessively modern or of an old fashioned outdated, our motto should be neatness and cleanness. A child of God is not the first to try the new fashion or the last to lay the old aside. That is our standard.

 

31 And they that use this world, as not abusing it: for the fashion of this world passeth away. 1 Corinthians 7:31

Fashion! Fashion and styles are never stable, they do not last, they keep changing, and we are witnesses to series of fashion that have come and gone. There are some male fashions; there was a time when men use trousers like horse rider trousers called Jodhpurs & Breeches, such that if you needed to undress you need the help of someone to pull it down. Soon this fashion changed, and changed to trousers called baggy. They call it sweep the city clean, and soon this changed, it changed to the normal type. The children of God who were not changing with the fashion of the world, the children of God who were in the middle of road were in the same place when the world fashion came back to meet them. What about ladies dresses, women fashion! We have been witnesses to several changes. There was a time women were using miniskirt, that soon changed to maxi which touched the ground which soon changed to ‘show the body’ so that when women walked, you will see the shape of the body because it was so tight. The latest version we have mentioned which are abominable before God. To dress like a Christian, like a child of God is commendable. If we maintain the standard which is modesty and decency it will be well with us. Both men and women must dress in a way that people of the world will listen to the testimony of salvation which we have to share with them.

 

Many people in high places, in the society are turning to the gospel today. Not only turning to the gospel, but also defending the gospel, because there is something different, because they see something different in the gospel of Jesus Christ. Then we should not turn around and imitate the children of the devil. The sleeves of our women blouses should extend beyond the elbows, we should not dress in a way that will expose our body. We should not dress in a way that we cannot feel comfortable when we sit down. This are worldly way of running after fashion, a child of God should not run after fashion. Let us see the warning God gave us.

 

1 I beseech you therefore, brethren, by the mercies of God, that ye present your bodies a living sacrifice, holy, acceptable unto God, which is your reasonable service.
2 And be not conformed to this world: but be ye transformed by the renewing of your mind, that ye may prove what is that good, and acceptable, and perfect, will of God. Romans 12:1-2

This is God warning to us, which we should adhere to , we should not imitate the world, we do not want to appear like the people of the world. We want to maintain our standard and be a Christian. Some of us have double standard, we have dresses for the office, and we have dresses for the church. You should be a Christian everywhere, Christian in the church, Christian at home, Christian in the office. We should dress differently, when you go to work, to dress one way and differ in our dressing in the church. Anywhere we are we want to be Christian. We want people to identify us as Christian. In our appearance we want people to identify us as Christians. When we see the people of the world in their dresses, we know them, we identify them.

 

There are some people when you see their dresses, you shake your head and know that these are the world. These are the children of the devil. The gospel is so glorious that we have nothing to imitate in the world. We do not want the world to pull us away; rather we want to gain the people of the world into the gospel. Some people have made enquiry by the way we dress, by our appearance asking which church do you go? I belong to gospel of Jesus Christ; I belong to Apostolic Faith church. Should there be a time when people ask you such a question and say that I do not think you go to that church again? What will you say; when people judge you by the way you dress, and ask you don’t you go to that church again? Are you no more in that church? You ask why? By the way you dress? What will you say? What answer will you give? May the Lord have mercy on us? We do not want the world to come into the gospel, we don’t want to introduce the world into the gospel, we want to win as many people from the world into the gospel. We have to make up our minds this morning. It states, do not conform to this world, do not conform to this world, but be ye transformed by the renewing of your mind that ye may prove what is that good, and acceptable, and perfect, will of God. May God keep us in His will, in the centre of His will. We do not want Jesus Christ to be ashamed of us. When he comes in His glory, likewise we should not be ashamed of Jesus Christ. We do not want to be ashamed of the gospel. We want to stand for the gospel anywhere. May the Lord help us.


By Rev S Adeliyi
 

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