It Is A Salvation Question!

Most Christians today do not believe that our diet, dress, music and social conduct constitute a matter of salvation.  This sermon presents the truth that it was a violation of dietary restrictions which has resulted in the human race’s 6,000 year rendezvous with sin, and only obedience to every divine precept will be accepted before our heavenly King, the blood of Y’shuah notwithstanding.  You will be challenged to see that “cheap grace” without obedience to YHWH’s commandments will earn us nothing but His frown.  Please listen and leave your comments.

The below discussion has capitalized on dress and adornment, and while my attention is not directed exclusively to women, I will share this picture that was sent to my WhatsApp account: Old and modern church dressing

The illustration is clear, and I believe all morally upstanding men would see that there is a line of demarcation between the sacred and the common, that must be maintained.  The way I dress for love and romance is not the way to appear before our God and Saviour.  The lesson of Peter’s experience upon meeting Jesus while out fishing with his fellow disciples ought to be a good example, that while our dress does not “save” us, it shows a level of respect we have for the Sovereign before whom we stand, sit, or kneel.

How appropriate would it be, in your mind, should a pastor go into the pulpit in a vest (wife-beater), and a pair of tight jeans?  Will this change the tone of his message?  I don’t know, but it will certainly change the attention of focus for both men and women in that congregation.

 

Comments

6 comments on “It Is A Salvation Question!”
  1. Stephen Hovde says:

    On secular music styles with Christian lyrics I agree it has no place in worship but we need to also look at alter calls where Christian hymns and music are played. I have always felt this also draws people to the call that would not come without the music, leading me to question the truth of the persons response. On dress I know how the true seeker is turned away from coming to church services because they see the majority of the church members arraigned in fine clothing and feel embarrassed because they can only afford items like blue jeans and shirts so they do not return. Remember these are people just commencing the journey. It is too bad the members put a stumbling block in front of them. Do you think God is impressed because of the fancy clothing being worn? I think not. If you can’t come to God adorn as you are when your not trying to impress someone(your boss, your clients, your neighbors) then you don’t respect Him. I wonder how many of the crowds following Jesus where dressed in fine apparel, other than the Pharisees. If you put a stumbling block in front of a seeker, be it in dress or unwashed hands or meats that go out in the draught are you serving Gods purpose? On meats the word of God tells us what is clean and unclean. If as a church we attempt to add to that(ie: vegetarianism) are we doing His will? The topic is health, so the ultimate vegetarian is a vegan – ask one where they get their vitamin D3 from and how healthy they would be without it. We as Christians must not follow in the footsteps of those in the time of Jesus who taught the ordinances of their fathers and became so hidebound by them that they could not have the time for Jesus.

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    1. Thanks for sharing your comments. I agree with your perspectives. The sermon was directed to those who have been enlightened by the world of righteousness. Newborn babes will always “come as they are,” but we must be careful that they do not “remain as they came,” but are disciples unto holiness. This is why people of every disposition and character may come to the Church of God and receive “soul food,” but it does not hold that they should come to the educational center for salvation, and not grow, or learn the ways of righteousness. When we come to Christ HE teaches us, and leads us into all Truth through the enlightenment of His Word by the power of the Holy Spirit.

      Dress and adornment being the central point of your concern, I also recognize that there is a growth process in this arena. Yes, we come to Jesus as naked as were the demoniacs, but we don’t walk around “in the shame of our nakedness” after being restored in our rightful minds. It is more than a social taste, but a principle of Torah, that we are “a kingdom of priests, and an holy nation.” God gave to Moses strict directions on the garments of the priests, Exodus 28. Of Christians, the Bible says, “ye are a royal priesthood, an hold nation, a peculiar people.”

      Most people who can afford only jeans, are able to secure more appropriate clothing for the occasion of divine worship. It is not a standard set by man, but by the Creator Himself. There is much to be realized in the subject of the “wedding garment” parable given by Christ, because it projects a lesson of far-reaching proportions. It is of interest that men took “took knowledge of them,” the early Disciples, that “that they had been with Jesus.”

      In the final analysis, no one can prescribe a standard of conduct for others to conform with: not in music, food, diet, social conduct, Sabbath-keeping, clothing, tithes and offerings, etc. We must all be so driven by the indwelling Holy Spirit. My attempt in that sermon was to call notice to these things that “they are a salvation question,” even though we individually have the choice to conform or not. As a Bible teacher, my duty ends with the delivery of the Word, and only the Holy Spirit can go beyond that door, and inspire hearts to respond accordingly.

      Yes, the emotionalism involved with the alter calls are largely designed to prepare the mood and work on the mind. Quite often when these high-pressure sales pitches are performed, those who have responded to the call, turn away very quickly after the emotional aura of the moment has worn off. Again, I appeal to the Holy Spirit in all matters of conduct and teaching, that He is the ONLY ONE who can bring conviction, and Christians ought not to play the part of the so-called “temple cops,” measuring worshipers along their perceived lines of holiness. We grow at different rates and are answerable only to God in all things. My job as a teacher of righteousness, It is only sufficient for me to faithfully and unequivocally deliver God’s word, and leave the results with Him. Shalom.

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  2. Stephen Hovde says:

    I have been rich, I have been poor. We walked cross country a mile to school quite often carrying our shoes so as they wouldn’t be damaged. We made pillow cases from flour bags. The best clothing we had we normally patched so they would last. But they were always clean. We were not a third world country though later in life my mother a SDA member and a catholic nun collected clothing which was distributed to people who could not afford clothing both in Canada and around the world. Your comment that most people can afford better than jeans for worship services shows a tragic lack of reality in large area of not only the world but in western countries as well. So what happens to those who do not fall in your “most” area. Using your reasoning on dress for worship I ask you, cannot you acquire even better clothing for church services? Or I being rich, do I need to wear a $10,000.00 Armani suit instead of my $300.00 one.
    My point is that if your clothing causes a child to turn away because they are embarrassed by their clothing are you not putting a stumbling block in front of their feet. Remember these are individuals first seeking the truth, these are those at the milk stage not the meat stage.
    An example: we as a family were fairly well off at this point. My dad died, we were having a small funeral. We were all dressed in suits and other well off attire. Dad’s pall bearers were myself and my brother and four friends from a native reserve. When we seen them pull up down the road we seen they were dressed in what was their best. Blue jeans and shirts. Without even thinking about it we changed into our regular daily apparel. Blue jeans and shirts so as to make them feel comfortable knowing they came with the best they had and we didn’t cause them discomfort in their attendance.
    And that I believe is all God asks and He has spoken on it in James chapter 2.

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  3. I don’t think an honest review of the presentation was making dress a barrier to church attendance. If you go to time marker 1:17 and following, you will see that I addressed this concern in a direct manner. Interestingly “Dress” was only ONE of the several topics I dealt with in the sermon.

    If I were to use your logic of conforming with those who are less fortunate, then I could extend the concept that If I went out where alcohol or port is being served, then not to look like a square peg in a round hole, or out of place, I should simply conform to the group norm, so no one seems out of place.

    I did not prescribe a dress code, of suite and tie, but “modesty” before God. Even the angels veil their faces before the Most High, and we ought to be respectful on how we come into His presence, whether at home or in public worship.

    I dealt with:

    Music
    Health/Diet
    Dress and Adorning
    Obedience to the Torah commands outside of the Ten Commandments.

    I took pains to say we ought not to major in minors, or minor in majors, but not to leave any of the Divine precepts undone.

    Please take a look at the picture I have inserted above, and determine in yourself it is respectful before God and man to have individuals adorned this way who have taken up the vow of baptism, and have been following the Lamb of God.

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  4. Stephen Hovde says:

    In my original post I dealt with musc, health and diet, dress and in previous posts with obedience.
    In response to your photos, who are the folks in both the photos trying to impress? I guarantee you cannot impress God except with the contents of your heart. Do any of these folks dress like this daily or hourly? I think not, yet you are to worship our God 24 hours a day, 7 days a week, all our waking hours even laying in bed for He is with us always. We cannot impress Him with clothing. We just have to look at Mathew 6 to see what He thinks of our clothing and the admonishing in Luke 7 about what is important.
    Do we as you say, conform? We are an example to others of our Faith in Christ and must live that faith to be an example, but was it not Paul in 1 Corinthians 8:13 that conformed to not cause offence. He knew he could lawfully eat meat but did not want to weaken a brother. If I go among drinkers do I conform? No, it is not lawful for me to drink and my refusal to conform gives the opportunity to witness why I don’t.
    Further to your photos – in either photo if these have taken up the vow of baptism I have a couple questions.
    1. Can we say what is in their hearts?
    2. Who has been instructing them?
    3. Are they aware of their error or have they like Peter who was baptized yet cut the ear off of a person, sinned?
    My point has always been that we should not put a stumbling block in front of these people who are usually the poor by our hypocrisy. For if we don our gay(lampros – figuratively magnificent) clothing just for church what does that make us the rest of our daily lives when we are to be worshipping the Creator.
    Anyone suggesting that some poor new seekers aren’t dissuaded from returning hasn’t spoken to those that felt out of place.
    If the question is should they feel out of place the answer is no but they do not realize that yet. No different than they may not know of Christ yet.

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    1. Noted. I can’t say what’s in their hearts, but I do know that God has a standard of how his people should appear before Him. A good illustration of this is found in the two women in Revelation (12, and 17).

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