Costume or Mask?
We’ve all read of the lavish costume balls of the Renaissance with dignitaries showing up in elaborate masks and even more elaborate suits and dresses. It seems to be a common desire for man to cover himself with some costume to hide one’s true identity. Even our fictional superheroes wear costumes.
Putting on a disguising outfit seems to be deep in the psyche of mankind. When we’re kids, it’s liberating to play “dress up.” It’s a blast for folks to not know exactly who we are. I remember working for a company where part of my job was dressing up in a cow costume and going to public events. No one knew who I was so I could act zany and feel totally free. It was great!
On the “Red Carpet” during the Academy Awards one of the most common questions commentators asked the beautiful people was, “Who are you wearing?” And we get a list of wonderful costume designers whose entire profession is making people look good by covering any faults and flaws in beautiful costumes.
Judgment on the Red Carpert
On the judgment day of our deaths we’ll be walking down the “Red Carpet” towards the throne of God and we’ll hear someone yell, “Who are you wearing?” And only one answer will give us entrance into the heaven waiting just beyond God’s righteous judgment. If we answer, “What?” or “I’m wearing all my good works and well-meaning efforts” or “Who do you think you are asking a personal question like that?” we’ll never get past the critical eye of the biggest judge of all; a totally Holy God who will not permit sin of any kind – no flaw whatsoever – into His paradise of eternal life.
Now, I know what you’re thinking – it’s what we’re all going to be thinking. “How is a sinner like me going to stand before God Himself on His Judgment Day? When we realize that even the tiniest sin is terrible in a perfect God’s eyes and that like a rock on the tracks, the smallest sin can totally de-rail us on our trip into God’s eternal presence.
Our sin, even in its smallest version, even a little “white lie” will earn us the spiritual death sentence of hell. Romans 3:23 and Romans 6:23 clearly tell us that every one of us is a sinner and that the punishment for being that sinner is spiritual death.
So, what are we to do? It’s time to do what superman does… go into a closet and change into a costume! A wonderful costume, by a fabulous designer, specifically made to cover up the sin of our rebellious tendencies and flaws and cover us with the wonderful, beautiful, even miraculous garment of our Lord and Savior, Christ Jesus!
For in Christ Jesus you are all sons of God, through faith. For as many of you as were baptized into Christ have put on Christ. There is neither Jew nor Greek, there is neither slave nor free, there is no male and female, for you are all one in Christ Jesus. Galatians 3:26–28
and put on the new self, which in the likeness of God has been created in righteousness and holiness of the truth. Ephesians 4:24
The night is almost gone, and the day is near. Therefore let us lay aside the deeds of darkness and put on the armor of light. … But put on the Lord Jesus Christ, and make no provision for the flesh in regard to its lusts. Romans 13:12, 14
put on the Lord
What a fantastic covering!! When we stand before the God of the Universe, and He looks at us, all He’s going to see is the covering of His beloved and cherished Son. It’s not that we fool God – no one can do that. But He understands that the precious blood of His Son, Jesus has covered us and given us new robes – robes made by the Holy, Sinless Christ when He willingly died for each of us.
So, our challenge is not to wait until we’re walking on that final “Red Carpet,” heading toward God’s loving embrace because of our “Christ costume,” but to wear Christ in my everyday life… putting on Christ every day! When people see me going through my daily life can they see Christ who’s covering me? In blessings and battles am I showing Christ? When I’m going about my daily life as a Christ-follower, do I wear Him as a miraculous covering of all my sin?
And when observed by folks who are not believers in Christ, does my demeanor bring them to a point of asking me, “Who are you wearing?”
Help me Father, to live like that. And help me confidently answer, “I’m proudly wearing Christ!”
How ‘bout you? Who are you wearing?
Think about it….