Have I cleaned out my closet?

We can clean out our closet by surrendering to the Holy Spirit, Who is unsullied purity and we can wear what suits who we are in Christ.

Some of these thoughts are based on a message from Dr. C. Stanley heard on the radio.  I’m always amazed and thankful at how the Holy Spirit expands my thoughts and pours Scripture verses into my mind.

When we are born again everything about us becomes new.  New birth, new creation, new nature, new person, new life because (Colossians 3:4) Christ is our life – new clothes, new purpose, new destiny.

When we get ready to go out we take clothes from the closet and put them on.  Then we look in the mirror and if it looks awful we strip it off and change into something else.  What the mirror tells us about our outer garments (what others can see) the Holy Spirit convicts us about our inner garments – what we choose to clothe ourselves in.  Do we sometimes clothe ourselves in (Colossians 3:8-9) anger, malice, bad feelings toward others, curses, slander, gossip, foulmouthed abuse, shameful utterances?  What about coarse talk (Ephesians 5:4) and foolish jesting?  Why are they still in our closet?  Why can God see us wearing old, ragged, unbecoming, stinking clothes which we should have discarded?  Why – when God has provided (1 Corinthians 1:30) the righteousness of Christ to be our apparel?  We can clean out the closet by surrendering to the Holy Spirit, Who is unsullied purity and wear what suits who we are in Christ.

Oh! Did you ask me what I think you should put on to-day?  I have a few suggestions for both of us but, of course, we can’t put on something more attractive if we are already wearing some ugly, old rag.  For every “put on” there must be a “take off”.  Here are a few of the many styles described in God’s catalogue.

Put off (Proverbs 16:18) obnoxious, destructive pride and clothe yourselves (1 Peter 5:5) with lovely fragrant humility.  Put off (Romans 13:12) the works of darkness and put on the armour of light.  Put off (Romans 13:14) providing for the lusts of the flesh and put on the Lord Jesus Christ. (What a staggering contrast!)  Put off (Proverbs 1:19) life-robbing greed and put on (Colossians 3:14) love and (1 John 3:17-18) compassion.  Put off the former conversation and the old man (Ephesians 4:22) which is corrupt and put on the new man (Ephesians 4:24) created in true holiness.  Put off (Colossians 3:8) anger, wrath, malice, filthy talk and put on kindness, a tender heart (Ephesians 4:31) of forgiveness and always (Colossians 4:6) gracious, winsome speech.  If you wear the popular habit of grumbling and complaining it is contagious but not at all pretty.  Take it off (Numbers 11:1, Jude 16) and adorn yourself with (Philippians 4:6, 1 Thessalonians 5:18) the delightful attitude of gratitude.  Complainers are never satisfied but thankful Christians have (Philippians 4:11) learned to be content.  Clothe yourself with the new man, renewed (Colossians 3:10) in knowledge after the image of the Creator.

Put off (2 Corinthians 2:11) foolish, careless, vulnerability to Satan’s wiles and put on (Ephesians 6:11) the full armour of God.

The priests (Psalms 132:9) were clothed in righteousness.  Now we are the temple (2 Corinthians 6:16) of the Living God and (1 Peter 2:5) a holy priesthood.  Therefore, we too are to be clothed with righteousness.  How are we dressed?  Do we wear a smile when we hear suggestive, vulgar talk?  Often in Deuteronomy the Lord speaks of the place He has chosen (Deuteronomy 16:6) to put His Name and His Presence there.  Now that we are the temples of God, He has chosen to put His Name and His Presence within us.  If we truly care about our spiritual attire, we will be sure to have physical apparel which always allows us (1 Peter 3:2-3) to dress modestly out of love and respect for our holy Bridegroom.  If what you wear arouses lust in men and envy in women, where is God’s love in that?  Lust and envy are among the vile sins that nailed Jesus to the Cross.  Your actual physical clothes, as well as your spiritual clothes, can speak volumes about you.  God intends them to match.  We can choose the inward adorning and beauty (1 Peter 3:4) of the hidden person of the heart.  I have a suggestion which calls for a critical decision.  When you take off the revolting garb – don’t put it back in the closet just in case a deceptive mood urges you to wear it on a particular day.  Get rid of it now and forever.  Take away (Zechariah 3:4-5) his filthy clothes – not back in the closet – away and gone forever and bring Him clean clothes.  Burn up your old rags in the furnace of no return.  We can take a lesson from (Proverbs 31:17) and gird ourselves with spiritual strength.

Why is this so important?  Not only for our own spiritual growth and enrichment but also because we are accountable (Romans 14:12) for the example we set for our children, grandchildren and new believers.  Disobedience in Christians always brings (Hebrews 12:6) God’s chastening.  But consider what such a life will cost us – how much we have to lose.  Christ is our life (Colossians 3:4) and if He is unhindered to live that life in and through us by the Holy Spirit, everything about us is with Him. Because the Lord Jesus is the      victorious, mighty conqueror: - We are –

Galatians 2:20 – crucified with Him

Colossians 2:12 – buried with Him

Colossians 2:12 – risen with Him

Ephesians 2:6 – seated with Him

John 17:22 – glorified with Him

Colossians 3:3 – hidden with Him

Romans 8:17 – joint heirs with Him

But there is still more – just look.

Colossians 3:4 – appear with Him

1 Thessalonians 3:13 – come with Him

1 Corinthians 6:2-3 –judge with Him

2 Timothy 2:12, Revelation 20:6 – reign with Him

You and I both know there is nothing we can wrap ourselves in of all the world’s trappings – sophistication, glamour, popularity, wealth, position, possessions and etc. and etc. - - nothing comes even close to being in the same realm as the joy, fulfillment, security, inheritance, beauty and heart-peace and everything of unfading value that is bound up in these 2 eternal God-breathed words - - -


P.S.  Around 3 A.M. this morning I was lying in bed talking with the Lord when this truth hit me with fresh wonder.  We know that God has all power and can do anything He wants to do anywhere and anytime.  Yet He stands aside to let humans exercise their free will, make their own choices and determine their own eternal destiny. 

For believers – reward or loss. 

For unbelievers – heaven or hell. 

When the day of accounting comes nobody will say - can say - that God forced them to do anything.

Choose you this day (Joshua 24:15) Whom you will serve.

FASHION STATEMENT – If you want to be really high end well dressed, put on (Isaiah 61:3) the garment of praise.

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