Before we make a decision on the apparel a minister/pastor should wear based on perceived notions, let us first pray to be one with Christ Jesus, then look into the scriptures for direction based on His wisdom and Knowledge.
Our study will include these (4) four relevant areas that
determine church attire, with a brief conclusion for each area.
1. Biblical Dress, Church Attire - scriptures reviewing general principles and some specific abuses.
2. "The Church" - scriptures defining the church, interpretation of a holy place, sanctuary and the cross.
3. Reverence for God -scripture review.
4. Minister's Calling - defining call and position.
5. Conclusion - Brief commentaries on the four topics offering explanations with a critical viewpoint.
The most common quoted scriptures regarding church apparel.
1 Peter 3:3
"Whose adorning let it not be that outward adorning of plaiting the hair, and of wearing of gold, or of putting on of apparel;"
James 2: 1-4 Warning against Prejudice
"My friends, as believers in our Lord Jesus Christ, the Lord of glory, you must never treat people in different ways according to their outward appearance. Suppose a rich man wearing a gold ring and fine clothes comes to your meeting, and a poor man in ragged clothes also comes. If you show more respect to the well-dressed man and say to him, "Have this best seat here," but say to the poor man, "Stand over there, or sit here on the floor by my feet," then you are guilty of creating distinctions among yourselves and of making judgments based on evil motives."
Upon reading these two scriptures it would indicate that you "should
not adore" about your dress or be "guilty of creating
distinctions" and/or "making judgments" on
perceived notions of a person based on their clothes.
These scriptures however do strongly indicate that God is concerned about being distracted by outward appearance and not giving diligence to the inward heart.
The most common quoted scriptures regarding, Sanctuary "The Church."
Colossians 1: 15-18 The Person and Work of Christ
"Christ is the visible likeness of the invisible God. He is the first-born Son, superior to all created things. For through him God created everything in heaven and on earth, the seen and the unseen things, including spiritual powers, lords, rulers, and authorities. God created the whole universe through him and for him. Christ existed before all things, and in union with him all things have their proper place. He is the head of his body, the church; he is the source of the body's life."
Ephesians 1: 21-22
"Christ rules there above all heavenly rulers, authorities, powers, and lords; he has a title superior to all titles of authority in this world and in the next. God put all things under Christ's feet and gave him to the church as supreme Lord over all things. The church is Christ's body, the completion of him who himself completes all things everywhere."
Ephesians 2: 15-17
"He abolished the Jewish Law with its commandments and rules, in order to create out of the two races one new people in union with himself, in this way making peace. By his death on the cross Christ destroyed their enmity; by means of the cross he united both races into one body and brought them back to God. So Christ came and preached the Good News of peace to all."
Acts 20: 28-29
"So keep watch over yourselves and over all the flock which the Holy Spirit has placed in your care. Be shepherds of the church of God, which he made his own through the blood of his Son. I know that after I leave, fierce wolves will come among you, and they will not spare the flock."
1 Corinthians 3: 16-18
"Surely you know that you are God's temple and that God's Spirit lives in you! God will destroy anyone who destroys God's temple. For God's temple is holy, and you yourselves are his temple."
Sanctuary, "building": Since there is NO Christian Altar or area established as holy "separate" or "set apart" place where most Christians hold their assemble, the buildings only purpose is to provide a place of assemble.
1 Corinthians 1:
18-20 Christ the Power and the Wisdom of God
"For the message about Christ's death on the cross is nonsense to those who are being lost; but for us who are being saved it is God's power. The scripture says,
"I will destroy the wisdom of the wise and set aside the understanding of the scholars." So then, where does that leave the wise? or the scholars? or the skillful debaters of this world? God has shown that this world's wisdom is foolishness!"
Note: Most churches have removed their Cross which was a holy place for members to establish, reconnect, humble themselves to Christ Jesus.
The Cross establishes a preaching which is a stumbling block to the self-righteous and the so called religious, and foolishness to the philosophers and the so called wise or debtors of this world. Without the presence of the cross, a congregation could drift away to a place of cheap grace and foolish teachings.
It is clear that the individuals that have humbled themselves to Christ Jesus form the body of "The Church." Every time the body of believers "congregation" assemble, they are in the presence of Christ Jesus our Lord. The Church is fabricated by each individual that has humbled themselves to Christ Jesus as their Lord and Savior.
The most common quoted scriptures regarding reverence for God.
"Let us be thankful, then, because we receive a kingdom that cannot be shaken. Let us be grateful and worship God in a way that will please him, with reverence and awe;"
"When you see the children that I will give you, then you will acknowledge that I am the holy God of Israel. You will honor me and stand in awe of me."
"Who will not stand in awe of you, Lord? Who will refuse to declare your greatness? You alone are holy. All the nations will come and worship you, because your just actions are seen by all."
The scriptures are clear that we need to show our reverence, respect and be obedient to our God of creation.
What is the definition of a Christian Minister?
Answer: The word "Ministry" is from the Greek word diakoneo, meaning "to serve" or douleuo, meaning "to serve as a slave." In the New Testament, ministry is seen as service to God and to other people in His name. Christ Jesus provided the pattern for Christian ministry.
Answer: The Apostles were the first Ministers.
Matthew 10: 5-7 The Mission of the Twelve These twelve men were sent out by Jesus with the following instructions: "Do not go to any Gentile territory or any Samaritan towns. Instead, you are to go to the lost sheep of the people of Israel. Go and preach, ‘The Kingdom of heaven is near!'
If you have the heart of Christ Jesus, "love God and your neighbor" and the will of Christ Jesus, "Go then to all people everywhere and make them My disciples," then you will exhibit the Heart and Will of a christian. Through time as you mature in your relationship with Christ Jesus, revelations of your purpose in the body will become apparent. One of the callings is to become an elder/minister. This title is given to a person that has matured in their relationship with Christ Jesus and has heeded their calling to oversee, nurture, assist new and maturing Christians in their personal relationship. It is a calling of servanthood, piety and leadership.
1 Timothy 3: 1-7 Leaders in the Church
"This is a true saying: If a man is eager to be a church leader, he desires an excellent work. A church leader must be without fault; he must have only one wife, be sober, self-controlled, and orderly; he must welcome strangers in his home; he must be able to teach; he must not be a drunkard or a violent man, but gentle and peaceful; he must not love money; he must be able to manage his own family well and make his children obey him with all respect. For if a man does not know how to manage his own family, how can he take care of the church of God? He must be mature in the faith, so that he will not swell up with pride and be condemned, as the Devil was. He should be a man who is respected by the people outside the church, so that he will not be disgraced and fall into the Devil's trap."
Romans 12:2 Conformity
"Do not conform yourselves to the standards of this world, but let God transform you inwardly by a complete change of your mind. Then you will be able to know the will of God—what is good and is pleasing to him and is perfect."
A minister/pastor calling is one of servanthood, piety and leadership.
1. Biblical Dress, Clothes - 1Peter 3:3 taught us that you "should not adore" about what you are wearing. However the reason why is found in 1Peter 3:4 Instead, your beauty should consist of your true inner self, the ageless beauty of a gentle and quiet spirit, which is of the greatest value in God's sight. The defining word from God is that He cares about the heart and soul of the individual not the outward appearance. James 2: 1-4 also taught us not to be guilty of creating distinctions among yourselves and of making judgments based on a person clothing. There is no scripture that indicates that any believer, minister or pastor should not dress in a manor that shows respect and reverence to God.
2. "The Church" - The scriptures are clear that God's Spirit lives with-in the individual believers of the congregation. God's holy temple is in the believer. Do to this fact, should not the believer dress in a manor that is in representation of respect and reverence of the God's holy temple that is with-in us?
3. Reverence for God - When one holds another in reverence, one is respectful and obedient to that other, so that reverence does not refer so much to an emotion as it does an action or a behavior which includes ones apparel.
4. Minister's Calling - Through His Spirit, God calls one into action with a humbling sense of respect and reverence to become a pastor/minister for the purpose leading and assisting others in their process of sanctification.
My Personal Viewpoint
Every Christian should have and show more respect and reverence for Christ Jesus then any other think. Elders, Ministers and Pastors being leaders in the church should set the example. So in the case of church apparel, one needs to dress more respectfully and show more reverence in their apparel than if they were attending a wedding or funeral. Our Best, Giving God our best should be the standard in all areas of our life.
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