Last week I failed to mention the very important story of Joseph and his coat of many colors. Again my friend Bob Salmon showed my the great importance of this story.
Joseph is the favorite son of Jacob - Why? - Because Joseph is the son his Jacob’s favorite wife Rachel. Jacob loves Joseph and blesses Joseph with this gift of a many colored coat just because he was born of a woman he loved. My point is that Joseph didn’t DO anything to receive his fathers blessing. The same is true of us, there is nothing we can DO for our initial salvation. Salvation is granted to us as a gift from God.
Now only does Joseph lose his garment, but another garment as we will see. His brothers strip him of his coat and sell him, and with this he loses his freedom. When we sin, we become slaves of sin until we once again turn to the blood of Christ to cover us and set us free.
So Joseph goes down to Egypt where he is working in Potiphers house and climbs in rank and is once again clothed. Now is when he loses his garments a second time. While working in Potiphers house his wife begins to tempt him to an adulterous relationship to no end.
Genesis 39:11-13 But one day, when he went into the house to do his work and none of the men of the house was there in the house, she caught him by his garment, saying, "Lie with me." But he left his garment in her hand, and fled and got out of the house.
Because of this Joseph would once again lose his freedom and be cast into prison, until one day he was blessed and then dressed again in the garments of the Pharaoh.
So we see from that story the significance of loosing your garments goes along with the loss of your freedom.
THE NEW TESTAMENT AND GARMENTS
Jesus tells a parable about a king having a wedding feast for his son. People get invited but they don’t want to come.
Matthew 22:8-14 Then he said to his servants, `The wedding is ready, but those invited were not worthy. Go therefore to the thoroughfares, and invite to the marriage feast as many as you find.' And those servants went out into the streets and gathered all whom they found, both bad and good; so the wedding hall was filled with guests.
"But when the king came in to look at the guests, he saw there a man who had no wedding garment; and he said to him, `Friend, how did you get in here without a wedding garment?' And he was speechless. Then the king said to the attendants, `Bind him hand and foot, and cast him into the outer darkness; there men will weep and gnash their teeth.' 14 For many are called, but few are chosen."
So, while this guy was in fact invited to the wedding, he chooses to even come to the wedding, but he refused to put on the garments of those at the wedding. There are many levels to this, but I think this is concerning those who want Christianity without Christ. They want the benefits of Christianity without having to actually conform themselves to Christ and this is dangerous. If we want to share in his heavenly blessings we must come to the altar of the Lord with our souls robed in holiness, lest we be cast into Hell for defiling the body and blood of our Lord in communion.
Ephesians 6:10-17 Finally, be strong in the Lord and in the strength of his might. Put on the whole armor of God, that you may be able to stand against the wiles of the devil. For we are not contending against flesh and blood, but against the principalities, against the powers, against the world rulers of this present darkness, against the spiritual hosts of wickedness in the heavenly places. Therefore take the whole armor of God, …girded your loins with truth, … the breastplate of righteousness, and having shod your feet with the equipment of the gospel of peace; … shield of faith, … helmet of salvation, and the sword of the Spirit, which is the word of God.
What about that place in Mark where that disciple runs off without his garments?
During the agony in the garden while Jesus is getting arrested it says:
Mark 14:51-52 And a young man followed him, with nothing but a linen cloth about his body; and they seized him, but he left the linen cloth and ran away naked.
Now, without any reference, Tim Grey (who has as awesome free talk on Mark @ EWTN - see side bar) says that there is a Jewish tradition which says that if you were a priest guarding the temple and you were caught sleeping, that your clothes would be taken from you and burned so that you would have to run home naked and in shame.
Now, Christ is the New Temple and the disciples were suppose to be watching and praying, yet they fell asleep, and this one runs off naked. Revelation speaks somewhat on this same topic when it says:
Revelation 16:15 "Lo, I am coming like a thief! Blessed is he who is awake, keeping his garments that he may not go naked and be seen exposed!"
2 Corinthians 5:1-4 For we know that if the earthly tent we live in is destroyed, we have a building from God, a house not made with hands, eternal in the heavens. Here indeed we groan, and long to put on our heavenly dwelling, so that by putting it on we may not be found naked. For while we are still in this tent, we sigh with anxiety; not that we would be unclothed, but that we would be further clothed, so that what is mortal may be swallowed up by life.
Revelation 19:7-8 Let us rejoice and exult and give him the glory, for the marriage of the Lamb has come, and his Bride has made herself ready; it was granted her to be clothed with fine linen, bright and pure" -- for the fine linen is the righteous deeds of the saints.