Clothed In Christ

Scripture: Romans 13:1-14, Galatians 3:26-29, Colossians 3:1-10
Date: 06/25/2011 
Lesson: 13
Hiding our weakness under Jesus, overcoming sin and being restored to the kingdom of heaven are major themes encompassed by "putting on Christ."
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Good morning and Happy Sabbath. Welcome to Sacramento central Seventh-day Adventist Church in Sacramento, California. A very special welcome to you that are joining us this morning in our sanctuary to study with us with Pastor Doug this morning. A triple thank you and welcome to those of you that are joining us from across the country and around the world this morning. We know that you will truly be blessed as you are every Sabbath as you join us to study God's Word together.

This morning we will sing hymn number 462, "blessed assurance Jesus is mine" for one of our songs. This comes as a request from sara in Alabama; jizelle in antigua and barbuda; greg in ArKansas; veronica, angel, and jasmine in the bahamas; ameidi, valencia, and abelino in belize; elias, leon, and betty in California; sigfried in colombia; jemina in england; ned in england--nope ned's from florida; maisie, karl, helen, denis, martine, and pascal from France; nicola in germany; dustin and annie in honduras; cassandra and James in Illinois; bessie in Maryland; janice and elton in Massachusetts; eliseo in Mexico; dian and howard in Mississippi; una in New Jersey; victor and almar in the Philippines; jenny in South Dakota; frida in sweden; Phillip in trinidad and tobago; lydia in the united kingdom; and jody in Wyoming. This is a favorite. Hymn 462, "blessed assurance." And we'll sing all three verses. If you have a favorite hymn, a special hymn that you would like to sing with us on a coming Sabbath, I invite you to go to our website at saccentral.

org. There you click on the "contact us" link. And you can request any hymn in our hymnal, and we'd love to sing that with you on a coming Sabbath. Our next hymn is hymn number 516, "all the way my Savior leads me." It just happens today that these are some of my favorite hymns too. So you cannot help singing these hymns without a smile on your face.

Hymn 516, "all the way," comes as a request from veronica, angel, jasmine, and lesa in the bahamas; leon, betty, tino in California; vince, Matthew, and Esther in Canada; marcia and collette in florida; the sween family and wilfred and Karen in grenada; demy and cora in Hawaii; suvarna and sheela in india; shanneilla, collette, and edson in jamaica; bud and jody in Maine; shayle in Montana; selina and jonathan in the netherlands; anita and victor in New York; chimaobi and olive in nigeria; April, lea, and angely in saudi arabia; tito, alma, and jenny in South Dakota; joeper in thailand; murphy family and darleen in trinidad and tobago; and thande in zimbabwe. Hymn number 516, and we'll sing all three verses of, "all the way." Let's pray. Our Father in Heaven, we know that very soon that that is going to be our cry, that you have led us all the way, and you have saved us. You have returned us to where you want us to be, and that is right next to you. We can hardly wait.

So thank you, Lord, as we come to you on your holy day this Sabbath. And we open Your Word. We just thank you for the instructions that we have, that we can attain the eternal life that you have promised us and that you've created us for. And we're so grateful. So we humbly seek your face this morning, Lord.

Just show us clearer who you are through Pastor Doug this morning, that we could be shining lights in this very cold and dark world. Save us, Lord, for your kingdom. Keep us faithful 'til you come. We pray these things in your precious, holy name, Jesus. Amen.

Our lesson study will be brought to us this morning by Pastor Doug bachelor, senior pastor here at Sacramento central. Thank you jolyne and our musicians, song leaders. Morning. I want to welcome the extended class that studies with us, we always have people we can tell from The Songs that get called in, from all over the world. And some are actually members of this church because they are isolated.

Through the miracle of either satellite reception or internet reception where a person might be remote, there's no local church. We know there are people who are out in the middle of the australian outback. We have folks we know that are in Canada, in remote places. And for whatever reason we have some shut-ins. And they say the only church connection they have is what they get through satellite or the internet at central church.

And some of them have become members of our church 'cause there's nothing local that they have. And we want to welcome those who are extended members of the Sacramento central church family all over the world. We're glad you're with us today. Also want to remind everyone, we have a free offer that goes along with our lesson. It's titled, "compromise, conformity, and courage.

" A little booklet by yours truly, dealing with how to remain firm in an age of compromise. "Compromise, conformity, and courage," we'll send it to you free if you don't have it. And that number, just call the number and make this request. It's 866-study-more, which is an acronym for 866-788-3966. We'll send that to you.

Today we're going to be going to lesson 13. It is the last lesson in our study guide dealing with garments of grace. Before we do that, I want to just give you a little preview. This lesson on worship coming up is very important. So I'm encouraging you to delve into that.

In the last days, what's the big battle over? Worship. One group will worship the beast in his image. The other will worship God and have the seal of God. And so this is going to be a very important lesson for our day and age. Alright, please go with me to lesson number 13, "clothed in Christ," very appropriate, "clothed in Christ.

" And we have a memory verse. The memory verse is from Romans 13:14, Romans 13:14. I'd enjoy if you'd say that with me. In the study guide it comes to us from the new international version. And why don't we say that? You ready? "Rather, clothe yourselves with the Lord Jesus Christ, and do not think about how to gratify the desires of the sinful nature.

" I'm so used to memorizing Scripture in the King James version that it takes a little extra effort for me to do it another way. With your indulgence, I'd like to do something. Last week when I was teaching the lesson, lesson number 12, dealing with more clothing imagery, it just sort of went through a number of other examples of clothing imagery and the Spiritual applications in the Bible, very important ones. I did not get to. I almost never do this.

Part of the reason I'm backing up and I'd like to just cover a couple of points that I left out is because we're recording this 3 weeks in advance, some who are still maybe watching this on the internet, and there's a significant number of people that do that, can still maybe take a couple of these points in their study to their classes. One dealt with when Jesus was clothed with garments of mockery, when he was being mocked. You remember what happened? Matthew 27:27, "then taking Jesus into the praetorian, the soldiers of the governor gathered the cohort against him. And stripping him, they put a scarlet robe around him." Now do you think there's some significance spiritually in taking off Jesus' robe and putting on a scarlet robe? What is scarlet typically a symbol of in the Bible? Isaiah 1:18, "come now, let us reason together, says the Lord, though your sins be as scarlet." So what would the significance be symbolically of Jesus having his robe stripped from him, and then having the world put a scarlet robe on him? Did he wear the uniform of our sins for us? He bore our sins. Now there's a little conundrum in here that some were wondering about.

If you read in Matthew, it says they put a scarlet robe on him. You go to Mark 15:17, and they clothed him with a purple robe. It says, "they clothed him in purple and plated a crown of thorns." Go to Mark 15:20, "when they mocked him they took off the purple robe." So which is it? Was Jesus wearing a scarlet robe or a purple robe? How do you solve a problem like that? Does the Bible contradict itself? I know what I think; I just wanted you to really think about your answer here. I believe the Word of God is consistent, so how do you reconcile this? The commentators that I've read deal with this one of two ways. And one is that in the original languages that in order to get purple, if they did not make the purple from the mollusk shells, they did have a very expensive purple die where they would grind up these shells.

It took millions of them to get this very royal purple. The other way they got purple was by mixing what two colors? Red and blue gives you a purple. And so any color that also had scarlet in it, could be called purple or red. So that's one way they dealt with it. The other way they dealt with it is that some of the roman soldiers in higher position not only had scarlet in their garments; they had scarlet and purple.

So they said, yes, they probably had a purple collar and a scarlet robe. It had both, which is interesting because what two colors does the apostate church wear in Revelation 17? Scarlet and purple. And these, by the way, are colors that could be found in rome on the cardinals and the bishops. And I think that's interesting. But so he was clothed with these colors that represented sin.

And they mocked him. Crown of thorns. Why thorns? When did thorns first appear? When sin came. And so thorns through the Bible are a symbol of sin. And so Christ was crowned with our sins.

And then they took a reed and they hit him on the head and drove the thorns in. Now those were not thorns, modest length thorns like you have on a rose today. They have a very intimidating bush in the middle east, in the land of Israel that has long thorns on it. And so somebody broidered one of these, probably with some leather gloves or something and made a very painful crown out of those and put that on his head. So he became really, he took our sins.

That's what that all signifies for us. Then of course the other section I wanted to touch on, "they parted my garments." Somebody please look up for me psalm 22:18. "They part my garments among them, and cast lots upon my vesture." Who could foretell that a thousand years? You know some people might make predictions about the future, and they make an educated guess. But who could ever venture a guess a thousand years in advance that the Messiah, in his sufferings, that they would part his clothing and gamble for the remainder? I mean how precise and bizarre would that be? What would ever make you guess that? And yet David said approximately 1000 years b.c. That they would do that.

And then of course you read it in John 19:23, "then the soldiers, when they had crucified Jesus, they took his garments and made four parts." Why four parts? What does the number four sometimes symbolize in the Bible? It represents, "then he'll send his angels to the four corners of the earth to gather together the elect." Four represents the four principle directions of north, south, east, west. It means something that it goes everywhere. It's universal. The righteousness of Christ is provided for who? His clothing represents righteousness. Whosoever will, four corners of the earth, all languages, nations, and tongues.

His garments were divided that way so that there's something for everybody. And then it says in Matthew 27:35, "and they crucified him, and they parted his garments, casting lots: that it might be fulfilled which was spoken of by the prophet." Which prophet? King David was the prophet. "They parted my garments among them, and on my vesture they did cast lots." Just an amazing, amazing prophecy dealing with garments and representing the righteousness of Christ would go everywhere. Alright, now let's jump to lesson 13. Thank you for allowing me to just tie off those important points.

We may not talk about garments and righteousness for another 20 years in the church, so I want to make sure and do this before Jesus comes. Run out of time soon. Our next passage is dealing with Galatians. And we're dealing with heirs according to the promise. Turn in your Bibles, Galatians 3:26.

I'm going to read through verse 29. Galatians 3:26-29, "for ye are all the children of God by faith in Christ Jesus. For as many of you as have been baptized into Christ have put on Christ." Then he goes on to say, "there is neither jew nor Greek, there is neither bond nor free, there is neither male nor female: you are all one in Christ Jesus. And if you are Christ's, then you are Abraham's seed, and heirs according to the promise." Now there's a lot-- phew--a lot of very important theology wrapped up in this. First of all, Paul is talking to people who believe that by virtue of being a jew you had special privileges conferred on you that gentiles did not have.

Paul is saying but when you become Christ's you are adopted in. You're no longer wearing the garments of a servant. You are wearing the garments of a son. You become a family member, that there's no distinction. In the military can you sometimes tell what a person's status is based on their uniform? Paul is saying they don't have those different levels anymore when you put on Christ and you are baptized.

You know, in our church as in many churches, people get baptized, they wear baptism robes. Now is it required to wear a baptism robe when you're baptized? Someone want to give me a verse on that? No. Certainly not. I've seen people baptized in blue jeans and a t-shirt or all kinds of things. Some places I've actually worn a wet suit when I did baptize 'em 'cause the water was so cold.

But why do we wear baptism robes? Should I interpret the silence by you having never thought about that before? But why do you think we wear robes? Couple of reasons. Some of them are practical--yes dina. One, it's a symbol. Take off your old clothes. Sometimes they're white robes.

Yeah. And it represents--now some of the robes are black. Could be a symbol for washing away sin. Any of you hear that funny story, it was in a book that--i think it was in a book called, "only the angels laugh," or "the angels must laugh," by jan doward. Anyway, this man got baptized.

And the dorcas ladies realized their baptism robes had become faded. And they said, "we need to re-dye them. They just, they look worn out. They're fine. They're just faded.

" They've been washed, baptized, you know, and they had some chlorine in the water. It pretty soon got faded. So one of the ladies took 'em home and she did whatever you do when she dyed them black again. Hung 'em out, let them dry. This particular church had a glass front on the baptistery so that when people got in, you could see at least a couple feet of water in there when you got in.

Some have you have seen that before, where you can actually see the front of the baptistery and you can see the water level right in there. And you see people get in. And when the pastor and his subjects got in to get baptized, a lot of dye was still left on the robes and just black began to pour out of the fabric. And the water just turned black. Well there was one old gentleman sitting in the front of the church, and he had a hearing aid.

Sometimes you forget how loud you are when you have a hearing aid. And he leaned over and said to the person next to him, he said, "brother, did they ever wash away their sins!" Because all the dye came out and the water turned black. So the white garments, you know, that would represent the righteousness of Christ. There's another practical reason I think people wear it. They wear their clothes to church.

They need something to wear that would be modest, because sometimes, you know if you don't have the right kind of clothing on, you get in the water and you get out, and it could be pretty revealing. And so in an effort to be modest and provide something else to wear, and also a symbol for the righteousness of Christ, they wear robes. But herein, it's talking about putting on Christ, it's really talking about just these garments of light that dispel darkness. Because he's talking about a new, living a new kind of life. How valuable is sunscreen at the beach? Have you ever told your children when they're going to go out and play, out in the beach, put on sunscreen? Especially if they're fair-skinned they've got to be a little more careful.

Have you ever missed a spot putting on sunscreen? I remember one time seeing, Karen actually had a suntan on her shoulder. We had gone scuba diving or something. I forget the occasion. But we were in australia, and she had put on some sun--and she went and she actually had a handprint that was protected, and it was all red around it on her shoulder, because she had spread it here. She slapped herself on that side, but she forgot to rub it in.

And so she had an exact handprint protected on her back from where she had put the sunscreen in. You can actually draw on someone's back with sunscreen, and if they lay out in the sun, you'll actually see the words appear. It does, trust me, it does make a difference. We're in a world where we're being bombarded with particles, and you need protection. And so when we think about putting on Christ, think for a minute of just being slathered in this protective ointment that is gonna keep you from being damaged by sin or getting burnt.

Now dr. Derose is here and he might help me say this right. There's an ailment called exodermophobia? Well, wait now, let me see it here. Um, it's something about exio-something-derma. I forget.

It's very serious ailment. I'm trying to remember what the right--i did an amazing fact on it. But there are people that are born, children that are born where they have no melanin in their skin. All of us have varying degrees. Those of you with darker skin you've got more.

Lighter skin you have less. But it protects you to some extent against the rays of the sun. These children cannot go outside. They virtually live in the dark. How many of you have heard of this before? And it even in moonlight they can go out but they have to get slathered in sunscreen.

Or it can affect their eyes. They have to wear sunglasses, 'cause you've even got pigment in your eyes. And otherwise they're very, very susceptible to skin cancer and they typically die young from some cancer-related skin disease. And they have to take protection. They have to put on clothing.

If there are windows in the room, sunglasses, sunscreen. And in some respects we sort of live in a world like that where we need to just be aware that we need to be guarded against the exposure. We're being bombarded all the time. You know, one of the principle things that astronauts have to worry about when they make the space suits and they go outside the spacecraft, we always think about them needing to be guarded against the extremes of cold, having a pressurized suit, having oxygen. The heat, when they get on the hot side of the shuttle in the sun, it gets like 212 degrees on their spacesuits.

So they wear this underwear that has liquid actually going through it to air condition their bodies and keep it at a stable temperature. But do you know the other thing is they're being bombarded, unprotected by the atmosphere by cosmic radiation. And so there is a lining in the spacesuit that is protecting them. Have you ever noticed that they've got this very heavy polarization on their space shield that they look out of? Very expensive. It's protecting their faces from the bombardment of radiation around them.

What you put on is very important. And for a Christian, putting on Christ is crucial in these lives. You also become like who you dress like. You become like who you put on. During--any of you saw the "Amazing Adventure" program that I did with Pastor Ross? We were in Texas--for kids? One night, I don't even remember what the subject was.

But, I think we were talking about counterfeits. We got--and this was like at the end of 2008--we got a george bush rubber mask for Pastor Ross. And he was to--we said, "we got the president visiting." And we put on his george bush mask and he was impersonating president bush. And when he, he had his suit and his rubber mask on, he went out and he did his best to act like president bush. And president bush, he had this habit, he always laughed with his arms down at his side and he kind of rocked his shoulders.

Ha, ha, ha, ha. You know, and so he was doing everything he could to look like president bush. And it was amazing how when he put on that mask he kind of fell into character. Dressing like somebody you sort of take on their character. And that should be true for the Christian.

When you put on Christ, we ought to take on, we should take on the character of Christ. Alright, why don't we jump now to the next section here, "no provision for the flesh." Romans 13:12, "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. Let us walk honestly, as in the day; not in rioting and drunkenness, nor in chambering and wantonness, not in strife and envying." Contrasting that it says, "but put on the Lord Jesus Christ, and make no provision for the flesh, to fulfill the lusts." There's a contrast being drawn here between putting on Christ and putting on the garments of the world or the lusts of the flesh. Now why don't you read for us then, what did I say? Romans 8:6-8. "For to be carnally minded is death; but to be spiritually minded is life and peace.

Because the carnal mind is enmity against God: for it is not subject to the law of God, nor indeed can be. So then those who are in the flesh cannot please God." You know, it would seem to me that he's drawing a comparison here between--you've got the armor of light. Then you've got the works of the flesh. You've got spiritually-minded and carnally-minded. Paul brings out these two things very forcefully in this letter.

You don't have to answer, but I bet many of us here, if I were to say dr. Jekyll and mr. Hyde, do you know what we're talking about? Robert louis stevenson wrote a very famous book called, "the strange case of dr. Jekyll and mr. Hyde.

" And it was about this man who was a very good, moral, upstanding citizen. And he drinks this--i think he was a doctor, I don't remember the original. There's all these variations of it. And he drinks this concoction that does something to his character where he would go through this metamorphous and he would become this despicable, violent, carnal man. And I forget which was which.

He was probably mr. Hyde, was the mean one. And some think that stevenson wrote this because he struggled with a little bit of schizophrenia or bipolar behavior himself, or knew people that did. But it really dealt with these two extremes. And maybe you've known folks like that, that can seem very civilized and kind and good and moral.

And then all of the sudden you meet them one day and you wonder, "what in the world? Who is this person? It's not the same person." And in some cases that behavior, in my opinion, is demonic. In some cases it may be chemical. And they've got medications and treatments where it seems to hold that in check and that behavior in bay. But all of us are spiritually bipolar. All of us have two natures that are warring inside.

It's very simple. It's the Spirit, and it's the flesh. Someone read for me 1 Peter 2:11. "Dearly beloved, I beseech you as strangers and pilgrims, abstain from fleshly lusts, which war against the soul." How do we put on the garments of light, this armor of light, so that we can overcome or resist the carnal desires? He tells us one thing to do. He says, "abstain from fleshly lusts which war against the soul.

" You know, for our family worship last night, Karen was at a graduation function. I was reading to the boys. I was reading from an old book. I sure hope Amazing Facts is still printing this book. It's called, "enemy at the gate.

" And wow, I was--Joe Crews wrote this. It was one of the last books he wrote, "enemy at the gate." And it's really talking about the gates of the mind, and how our minds are being just absolutely bombarded. We're under a constant barrage, a blizzard of information from the world. And we must daily make decisions about what we take in through our senses because that is going to determine who we become. And the fair of the world, the fodder, the material of the world, that people are receiving through all their senses, you name it, everything from what you might see as pop-ups on the internet to billboards that pop up on the highway, to magazines that pop-up in your mailbox, or advertisements that you didn't ask for because they're being bulk-mailed to you, to what pops up on the tv.

Let's suppose you find something that might be an acceptable program, sometimes they have commercials that used to--they would not have allowed certain commercials 20 years ago that they can get away with now in primetime. Or the advertisements on the radio, or the programming. I mean take your pick. Just the walking down the aisles in the store. We're living in a time where the fleshly side, the carnal, selfish--when I saw carnal people always gravitate to carnality.

They're thinking about passion and sex. That certainly is part of it. But that's not all of it. It would have to do with everything from gluttony to selfishness. I mean the advertisements are always appealing to our selfish nature.

And they're not asking you to curb that nature. They're encouraging you to fulfill it. And so the gluttony is being encouraged. Not only can you have bigger portions; you can get it quicker. And the sensuality is being encouraged.

Animalistic behavior, violence. I mean people are entertained by it. And you start thinking about everything that is bombarding the senses of our culture. How can you be a spiritual person in a world like this? We're being told to keep ourselves unspotted by the world. How do you stay even unspotted? How do you miss a spot? To avoid missing a spot with that sunscreen.

Jesus is the sun, right? That heavenly sunscreen. You really got to be careful, don't you? It takes extraordinary, herculean, aerobic effort to live a holy life in this wicked world. What were the conditions in the world before Noah, or before Noah's flood? The thoughts of men's hearts were only evil, only evil continually. Violence filled the land. People are all entertained by violence now.

And everything is about crime. The programming is all about crime. It's about murder. It's about violence. It's about war.

It's every--it's not just the cowboys and the indians fighting anymore. It's just it gets more and more gruesome. Why? Because people become so numb by the violence, in order to get their attention you need to go a little farther and a little farther and a little farther, so that the corporations can sell their products. And the advertisers can keep their audience. Isn't that right? And what does that feed: the Spiritual side of the church or the carnal side? So how can you do it? "As strangers and pilgrims.

" That means we are in a strange world and we are pilgrims. We are passing through. This is not our home. We're going somewhere else, but we got to go through. "As strangers and pilgrims, abstain from fleshly lusts, that war against your soul.

" On our road you can't turn to the right hand, to the left; there is a carnival going on. You know where the word "carnival" gets its name? It comes from, of course, those of you who speak spanish, "carne." It means meat or flesh. In latin, "carne" means the flesh. In the roman coliseums, when they on their festivals would gather together for entertainment, there was a lot of carnage, bloodshed, the gladiators and the slaves being thrown to the lions. And it was just gore and carnage, and they called it a carnival.

Because you could actually buy your t-shirts and your curios on the way in. And so now when you think about the kids saying, "can we go to the carnival?" Just have that image pop up in your mind. But we, like that book, "pilgrim's progress," we're pilgrims going through this country where you've got vanity fair all around us. How do you live a holy life in an environment like that? You've just got to be clothed with that armor of light all the time. You've got to measure and evaluate what you look at.

You have to make a covenant with your eyes every day, what you choose to look at. You've got to think about, "do I really want to listen to that?" And I think I've told you all the story, it just, it became really frightening for me when I realized how bad things were getting. Go to rent a car--I've done this, you know, hundreds of times. And I get in the car, I'm racing to an appointment. I'm actually late, 'cause one plane was delayed.

And you fumble for your driver's license before you take your rental car out of the yard. And you've got to give them your, you know, credit card or whatever information they need. And you're asking for a map. And I'm trying to get oriented with this car and find out where its mirrors are. And you always do a little orientation when you get a new car.

How's this one work and where are the knobs and switches. And while I'm doing all that, and I finally get buckled up and I drive off with the car and I start going down the road, it occurred to me from the time I turned on the ignition, 5 minutes went by and the radio had already been on when I got in the car and it was playing the most awful, worldly, heavy, rock, diabolical music. I mean if you think any music is not just amoral, this stuff was immoral. And I didn't even notice it. Yeah, you hear it so much.

You go through the stores and sometimes people call me and I'll get a cell phone call and I'm eating at--i like chipotle, I'll confess. They got good food. But the music. And someone will call me, and all of the sudden I become conscience that--they'll say, "where are you?" Ha, ha. "Oh, I'm at a discotech.

" Ha, ha. "Where are you Pastor Doug?" "I'm just eating lunch." How many know what I'm talking about? Am I alone? It's just around us all the time. So sometimes you've got to make some sacrifices because you're just being bombarded by that. And more than once I've tapped on the shoulder of the person at the restaurant and I said, "would you please be kind enough to turn that down?" I usually say I'm hard of hearing which I am. And they do.

But how do you live that kind of life in this world? Jesus said John 16:33, "in the world you will have tribulation: but be of good cheer; I have overcome the world." Now that's a very important point. Can we live holy lives, can we live spiritual lives in a carnal world? How many believe we can? I believe we can. I think that Jesus came to prove that we can. He has given us an example that as he was victorious, we can be victorious. He says, "be of good cheer; I have overcome.

" Why? "That you may overcome." How do we live a holy life in this world? The way Jesus did. He, God The Father will give us the Spirit. We are adopted into the family. We are given the same robe of righteousness Christ was given. And that same power is available to you and me.

Someone read 1 Corinthians 2:14. "But the natural man does not receive the things of the Spirit of God: for they are foolishness to him: nor can he know them, because they are spiritually discerned." How can you know what is spiritual and what is carnal? If we have to make judgment calls every day about what we allow to come through our senses into our minds to define who we become. You are today the sum total of what you've take into your mind through your senses over your life. Now some things are experiences you can't control. But you took them in, even the experiences you had.

The things we can't control I'm not talking about. But most of what you're taking in you can control. And that doesn't just mean what you see and what you hear and what you touch. What you eat. We can make choices in our health that determine our spirituality.

I find I'm a lot more spiritual when I'm rested than when I'm tired. So there's little things we can do that will help strengthen the ability to live that holy life. How do you know? Spiritual things are spiritually discerned. You pray for the Holy Spirit to give you that discernment. Have you ever heard someone read the Bible and they say, "you know, I read the Bible.

I don't get anything out of it." It kind of breaks my heart whenever I hear that. I say, "did you pray?" And then I've met people who have said, they've told a testimony, "you know, I've read the Bible. I tried to read it once and I didn't get anything about it. Then I came to a crisis in my life, and I got on my knees and I surrendered my heart to God. And I said, 'Lord, I need help.

' And I opened the Bible, and it came alive. I wondered why I never saw it before." Because they didn't have the Holy Spirit the first time. Spiritual things are spiritually discerned. That's why you need to pray for the Holy Spirit to guide us. 1 Corinthians 3:1, "and i, brethren, could not speak to you as spiritual people but as carnal, and as to babes in Christ.

I fed you with milk and not with solid food; for until now you were not able to receive it, and even now you are still not able; for you are still carnal. For where there is envy, strife and divisions among you, are you not carnal and behaving like mere men? For when one says, 'I am of Paul,' and another says, 'I am of apollos,' are you not carnal?" They were all fighting and lining up behind their favorite preachers. And the kind of arguments and behavior, he says, "that's not spiritual behavior. You're acting like spiritual babies." And he wants us to grow in Christ. Now baby food is different than adult food.

We all agree? Are baby clothes different than adult clothes? Talk about clothing. I heard someone say one time they don't really, today, they don't really put babies in normal clothes. They put babies in costumes. Babies wear--it's like they got the little sailor costume. Or they got the little clown costume.

Or they got the little, you know, whatever it is, you know. They put 'em in, ha, ha, it's like these little costumes. Baby clothes, stuff that you'd never have an adult wear. They're not just small adult clothing. It's baby clothes.

Well we should have the adult armor of light that Jesus is wearing. You know I heard one time that Matthew henry, the famous preacher and Bible commentator, very Godly man, I enjoy reading his commentary, and he always saw wonderful spiritual applications in the Bible of the life of Christ. Well he found a young lady that he fell in love with. Problem was she was from aristocratic nobility in england. And when she said to her parents that this is the man, they said, "you must be kidding.

He has no, no nobility. He doesn't have any family line. He doesn't have that status. We don't know where he's come from. And she said, you know, "he didn't have the breeding that they thought that he needed to have.

" She said, "well, I'm not sure where he came from, but I know where he's going and I want to go with him." And you know, whatever your background is, we can all put on the garments of Christ, can't we? We are adopted, the Bible tells us. When you read in Romans 8, and he makes this connection, this analogy between the Spirit and the flesh, it tells us that we are adopted into Christ. We become his children. When the prodigal son came home, and I know we had a whole lesson that dealt with that, what did The Son say to The Father? "Take me on as a servant." When The Father said, "get the best robe and clothe him," was it the robe of a servant that he was brought, or was it the robe of a son? And so when Jesus came out of the water, and The Father said, "this is my beloved servant," is that what he said? "This is my beloved son in whom I am well pleased." When we are baptized, and we put on Christ, or if you've drifted and you've come back to Christ; it doesn't have to happen with baptism. Now maybe you've been baptized and you've never, you've drifted or your experience has dried up, you can still put on Christ.

I think we ought to put on Christ every day. How many of you put your clothes on fresh every day? We should put on Christ every day. That when that happens, we need to hear what The Father said to Jesus. Was Christ baptized for his sins? He didn't need it. Then maybe he was baptized as an example for us.

What Jesus heard The Father say, we should hear by faith. "This is my beloved son," or daughter, "in whom I am well pleased." We are adopted into the family when we put on Christ. That's that armor of light. When Moses and Elijah appeared to Jesus, he was wearing those garments of light that were so bright that the Bible writers said, "whiter than any soap could ever get them." Well that's that armor of light, the righteousness of Christ. But while you put that on, you need to put something off.

Colossians 3:8-10, "but now you also put off all of these." You know if you put on layers of clothing, you get uncomfortable, don't you? So you got to put off one, when you put on the other. "Put off anger, wrath, malice, blasphemy, filthy communications out of your mouth, lie not to one another, seeing that you put off the old man with his deeds, and having put on the new man, which is renewed in knowledge after the image that has created him." It's a quick change. Any of you ever wondered at a program, or you see someone come out in one garment, and then they have a brief break and they come out in something totally different, and you think, "how did they change so quickly?" And it was just amazing. You know, salvation is a pretty quick change. In a prayer of justification, we can be changed instantly like Joshua the high priest before Christ, and get those new garments.

Alright, read for us please Colossians 3:12-13. "Therefore, as the elect of God, holy and beloved, put on tender mercies, kindness, humility, meekness, longsuffering; bearing with one another, and forgiving one another, if anyone has a complaint against another; even as Christ forgave you, so you also must do." Alright, now we find out something about the pattern and stripes in these clothes we're talking about. The garments of the flesh: "do not lie, anger, wrath, malice;" the garments of the Spirit: "kindness, mercy, humility, longsuffering." Now for you and I to bear those garments every day, what does that mean practically speaking? Doesn't that mean that we are going to have the characteristics of Christ, and not the characteristics of the flesh? Jesus showed us how to do it because the word became flesh and dwelt among us. Alright, in the few minutes that remain, I want to talk about in the twinkling of an eye. 1 Corinthians 15:51, "putting on immortality," good place to land this lesson, "behold, I show you a mystery: we will not all sleep, but we'll be changed, in a moment, in the twinkling of an eye, at the last trumpet.

For the trumpet will sound, and the dead will be raised incorruptible, and we will be changed. For this corruptible must put on incorruption, this mortal must put on immortality. So when this corruptible shall have put on incorruption, and this mortal shall have put on immortality, then it will be brought to pass the saying that is written: 'death is swallowed up in victory.'" We're talking about putting on these garments. Right now Peter talks about, "soon I must put off this tabernacle," what did he mean? Peter knew he was gonna die. He meant, "I'm just changing clothes.

" You ever think about dying is just changing clothes? This week I went to visit one of our dear members struggling with cancer, volunteered in the media department for many years, very sweet lady, had a wonderful experience in the Lord. And had prayer with her, encouraged her, received word this morning that she passed away. But you know, you can't mourn too much because what she's doing is, you know, last couple of years you struggle with cancer, a lot of suffering. We got these corruptible bodies that have all these ailments and problems. For her, she is putting that off, and she is gonna be putting on immortality.

Her next conscious thought for her, what's it gonna seem like? A moment, the twinkling of an eye. Those of us who are alive when Jesus comes, no matter what your age is, when the Lord comes, how quickly are we going to be changed? Instant. How quick is the twinkling of an eye? It's not even a blink. A blink is a fraction of a second. A twinkle is faster than a blink.

I can't prove that, but you can't disprove it. He says with a twinkle. It's hard to time a twinkle, but it's really quick. It's instantaneous. the Lord comes, those who are alive will go from their--whatever their age is and their mortal bodies that get old and have problems, to their glorified, eternal, immortal body, no more sin, no more problems.

Those who have died from abel to the present, they will be resurrected, for them it's just the twinkling of an eye, with their glorified, immortal bodies. And that's good news for a believer. Paul was not afraid of death. He said, "the only reason I question death is you still need help, and I hate to leave early." That's what he said, "you know, I don't know whether to depart and be with the Lord--" and by the way, what he meant by that was he knew his next conscience thought was the presence of the Lord. Even though Paul is sleeping, for him it's not sleep, it's instant.

Next thing Paul knows, if someone dies in Christ, their next thought is the presence of the Lord. Isn't that right? And so that's what that's talking about. But it's going to happen when Jesus comes. The dead in Christ will rise. They'll put on immortality as they come out of their graves.

And that's exciting. You know, I just got a moment or two left. I'd like to sum this up. You know, several times it tells us in Revelation about those who wear the white robes. And also in psalm 132.

Matter of fact, I'm going to go to this. Psalm 132:9, it kind of sums this up, psalm 132:9. "Let your priests be clothed with righteousness, and your saints should for joy." We are a nation of Kings and priests. You know, the high priest had six different components of his garment. They all said something about the righteousness of Christ.

And if we are a nation of Kings and priests, we ought to be putting on that righteousness. Then in Revelation 19:8, speaking of the redeemed, it says, "and to her," this is the bride of Christ, "she was granted that she should be arrayed in fine linen, clean and white: for the fine linen is the righteousness of saints." We put that on two ways. First, we put it on as justification. You come to the Lord just as you are. He gives you his righteousness as a gift.

Then as you follow Christ, you take possession of it. He then gives you a righteousness of sanctification where you live a new kind of life. So first he covers you. You can come just as you are. And that's why it's just justification.

He accepts you just as if you have never sinned. And then you continue to follow him, and it's sanctification. It's like when Elijah first came to Elisha, he lent him his mantel when he called him. But when Elijah ascended to heaven, he gave his mantel to Elisha. And Elisha put it on as his.

The nametag changed, so to speak. That's what salvation is like. I wish we had more time for this lesson, but I've already gone over. They'll have to cut something out. Don't forget.

We do have a free offer. It's compromise, conformity, and courage. It talks about living the Spirit life as opposed to the flesh. Call 866-788-3966. We'll send that to you.

Journey back through time to the center of the universe. Discover how a perfect angel transformed into satan the archvillain. The birth of evil, a rebellion in heaven, a mutiny that moved to earth, the hole, the creation of a beautiful new planet and the first humans. Witness the temptation in eden. Discover God's amazing plan to save his children.

This is a story that involves every life on earth, every life. "The cosmic conflict," if God is good, if God is all-powerful, if God is love, then what went wrong?

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