by: Gary L. Hutchens
What kind clothes do you wear? What kinds of stores do you shop in for your clothes? What brands do you buy? People dress in all kinds of styles, based upon the occasion and their personal tastes. Formal, business, business casual, casual, athletic, relaxed, grunge… The styles keep changing. We’d be mortified today to be seen dressed in some of the “cool” clothes we wore fifteen or twenty years ago.
The apostle Paul stated that, as Christians, our body is “the temple of the Holy Spirit,” and therefore each of us should “glorify God in your body.” (1 Cor. 6:19-20). We should live our lives to God’s glory. In stating His purpose for coming to this earth our Lord said, “The thief does not come except to steal, and to kill, and to destroy. I have come that they may have life, and that they may have it more abundantly.” (Jn. 10:10). Because of our relationship with Christ our lives should be abundantly filled with more meaning, fulfillment and joy than anyone else.
We can, and I believe we should strive to, love our life, but we need to keep in mind that life in this world is temporary. We need to come to realize that life here in this world is just a dressing room for eternity. What does that mean?
In his letter to the Romans Paul instructed that we should “put on the Lord Jesus Christ…” (Rom. 13:14). In his letter to the Galatians Paul explained how we do that: “For as many of you as were baptized into Christ have put on Christ.” (Gal. 3:27). It is through baptism that we come “into Christ,” and “put on Christ.”
The sense of the description is that we put Him on as though we would put on a garment. Being “baptized into Christ” further lends itself to that understanding. We speak of getting into our coat, indicating we’re putting it on. Once we put it on, we are in our coat. When we “put on Christ” we are “in Christ” (Eph. 1:1).
Understanding this principle of putting on Christ explains how life here in this world is just a dressing room for eternity. Paul said, “…the gift of God is eternal life in Christ Jesus our Lord.” (Rom. 6:23). In order to have eternal life in Heaven we must be “in Christ,” we must have “put on Christ” here in this world.
We have to be dressed up to go to Heaven. But that has nothing to do with the clothing of this world, however fancy or plain. We have to be dressed up in Christ! We have to “put on Christ.” It is at that point, when we are “baptized into Christ,” that the blood He shed on the cross cleanses us from the guilt of our sins (Acts 22:16) and we stand justified before God.
So, it’s a pertinent question that each of us needs to answer: What kind of clothes are you wearing?…
Gary L. Hutchens