Paul says we must Cloth or Dress ourselves in Christ
Romans 13:11-14 And that, knowing the time, that now it is high time to awake out of sleep: for now is our salvation nearer than when we believed. The night is far spent, the day is at hand: let us therefore cast off the works of darkness, and let us put on the armour of light. Let us walk honestly, as in the day; not in rioting and drunkenness, not in chambering and wantonness, not in strife and envying. But put ye on the Lord Jesus Christ, and make not provision for the flesh, to fulfil the lusts thereof. KJV
Paul immediately flows from his revelation of true love into telling us to exercise ourselves into the practice of loving each other in the truth. Paul declares that since Christ has come and died on the cross bearing our sin in Himself and has been resurrected from the dead to never die again but to live forevermore, that they then and us now should be diligent seeing that the end of this sinful earth draws close. Every person that has been born again must live in such a way that they are prepared to stand before our Lord, Master, and Savior Jesus Christ at any moment without shame or regret found pleasing to Him. Paul declares that everything we purpose, we perform, and we prefer must be about yielding ourselves completely to God the Holy Spirit’s Power, going all the way back to his imploring, exhorting, and urging to us in Romans 12:1-2, so that we moment by moment of every day and as the years go by shed ourselves of besetting sins. The writer of Hebrews states it even better with these words, Hebrews 12:1-4 Wherefore seeing we also are compassed about with so great a cloud of witnesses, let us lay aside every weight, and the sin which doth so easily beset us, and let us run with patience the race that is set before us, Looking unto Jesus the author and finisher of our faith; who for the joy that was set before Him endured the cross, despising the shame, and is set down at the right hand of the throne of God. For consider Him that endured such contradiction of sinners against Himself, lest ye be wearied and faint in your minds. Ye have not yet resisted unto blood, striving against sin. KJV Our Lord Jesus was perfect in word, thought, and deed and yet He so fought against sin that it brought Him to the point of bloodshed. We must look at our Lord and be filled so with love and gratitude for His Self-less sacrifice for each one of us that we should strive, fight, battle, labor, work, and toil against the sin that constantly desires to snare us and keep us from enjoying the freedom that our Lord Jesus Christ has purchased for us by and with His Blood (Galatians 5:1).
Paul wants us to put on our Lord Jesus Christ like a man would put on his overcoat or as the Scripture says of Gideon here, Judges 6:34 So the Spirit of the LORD came upon Gideon; and he blew a trumpet, and the Abiezrites were called together to follow him. NKJV The English phrase “came upon” is translated from the Hebrew word labash which literally means to wrap around or to put on a garment or clothe (oneself or another). God the Holy Spirit wrap Himself around Gideon or Gideon dressed himself with God the Holy Spirit like wearing an overcoat or suit coat. This is exactly what the Apostle Paul is saying to these believers in Rome and to you and me today that we should allow our Lord Jesus Christ (for He will not force Himself upon us) to wrap us up in Himself and His Eternal Light so that He can strip us of sins influence in our hearts and lives and give us continual victory in Him. Remember what our Lord Jesus said to the woman caught in adultery who was cast before Him by the Pharisees after He pointed out each of their sins, John 8:10-11 Straightening up, Jesus said to her, “Woman, where are they? Did no one condemn you?” She said, “No one, Lord.” And Jesus said, “I do not condemn you, either. Go. From now on sin no more.” NKJV This woman was made new by her encounter with our Lord Jesus and so she left from His Presence a new creature and immediately after this discourse with the woman our Lord Jesus turned to address His Disciples and the others remaining there with this eternal glorious truth that applied directly to the adulterous woman and any sinner who would come to Him, He said, John 8:12 Then Jesus again spoke to them, saying, “I am the Light of the world; he who follows Me will not walk in the darkness, but will have the Light of life.” NKJV
Paul certainly is writing with these words from our Lord Jesus in mind as he now tells us to “lay aside the deeds of darkness and put on the armor of light” who is Christ Jesus our Lord. Paul says we are representatives of our Lord Jesus Christ on this earth and we should so live with the desire and will (by the grace He gives) to be pleasing to Him (1 Thessalonians 5:4-6). Paul list six things that should not or ever be found in us because of our new lives in Christ: 1) rioting=carousing or reveling or loud alcoholic drinking parties. 2) drunkenness= being intoxicated with alcohol or the act of drinking alcoholic beverages to excess. 3) chambering=the Greek word koite= the marriage bed of adultery cohabitation, whether lawful or unlawful sexual intercourse. 4) wantonness=the Greek word aselgeia= unbridled lust, excess, licentiousness (disregarding sexual restraints; lacking moral restraints), lasciviousness (feeling morbid sexual desire or a propensity to lewdness), wantonness (lustful; sensual; hard to control sexual behavior; lewd or lewdness), outrageousness, shamelessness, insolence. 5) strife=quarreling; contention or wrangling. 6) envying=jealousy. Paul took his time to list these specific things with the expressed purpose as he said in the first half of this verse Romans 13:13 “let us behave properly or honestly or decently” as opposed to all six of these various behaviors which are the expressed opposite of decency which should never be the character or lifestyle of a new creation in Christ Jesus our Lord. Paul is not saying that a Christian man or woman or boy or girl will never envy or quarrel or lust or commit adultery or get drunk or be loud after drinking, but what Paul is saying is that no true son or daughter of God the Father will live their lives in this manner continually for doing so would bring reproach to the Name of Christ, as it is written here, Romans 2:21-24 You, therefore, who teach another, do you not teach yourself? You who preach that one shall not steal, do you steal? You who say that one should not commit adultery, do you commit adultery? You who abhor idols, do you rob temples? You who boast in the Law, through your breaking the Law, do you dishonor God? For “the name of God is blasphemed among the Gentiles because of you,” just as it is written.” NKJV
To live like this would be to purposely and profanely make our Lord Jesus Christ Name on the earth be blasphemed by unregenerate and unbelieving sinners that would help to perpetuate their continuance in their unbelief and ungodly living seeing that the people who Name the Name of Christ live in the very same manner. No one who loves our Lord Jesus Christ would want His Name to be mocked and maligned because of the lifestyle we lived before the world. As Paul said to brother Timothy with these words, 2 Timothy 2:19 Nevertheless, the firm foundation of God stands, having this seal, “The Lord knows those who are His,” and, “Everyone who names the Name of the Lord is to abstain from wickedness.” NKJV Paul tells us to clothe ourselves in the Lord Jesus Christ or as he said it in this manner here, Ephesians 6:10-17 Finally, be strong in the Lord and in the strength of His might. Put on the full armor of God, so that you will be able to stand firm against the schemes of the devil. For our struggle is not against flesh and blood, but against the rulers, against the powers, against the world forces of this darkness, against the spiritual forces of wickedness in the heavenly places. Therefore, take up the full armor of God, so that you will be able to resist in the evil day, and having done everything, to stand firm. Stand firm therefore, having girded your loins with truth, and having put on the breastplate of righteousness, and having shod your feet with the preparation of the gospel of peace; in addition to all, taking up the shield of faith with which you will be able to extinguish all the flaming arrows of the evil one. And take the helmet of salvation, and the sword of the Spirit, which is the word of God. NKJV When we live like this moment by moment of every day we are left down here as the sojourners, pilgrims, and aliens we now are, we will not fall prey to satan’s tricks and we will not furnish the unholy supplies that will ignite the flesh (our old man) to be fed and rise to the forefront because we gave forethought to it without being vigilant in spiritual warfare and battle. We need Christ Power through God the Holy Spirit and the Word of God always to walk worthy of this high calling we have in Christ Jesus our Lord (Ephesians 4:17-32).
“Sinful works are works of darkness; they come from the darkness of ignorance and mistake, they covet the darkness of privacy and concealment, and they end in the darkness of hell and destruction. ‘Let us therefore, who are of the day, cast them off; not only cease from the practice of them, but detest and abhor them, and have no more to do with them. Because eternity is just at the door, let us take heed lest we be found doing that which will then make against us,’ 2 Peter 3:11 & 2 Peter 3:14.” Matthew Henry
“Paul, in his intense moral earnestness, in Romans 13:13, bids us regard ourselves as already in ‘the day,’ and shape our conduct as if it shone around us and all things were made manifest by its light. The sins to be put off are very gross and palpable. They are for the most part sins of flesh, such as even these Roman Christians had to be warned against, and such as need to be manifested by the light even now among many professing Christian communities. But Paul has one more word to say. If he stopped without it, he would have said little to help men who are crying out, ‘How am I to strip off this clinging evil, which seems my skin rather than my clothing? How am I to put on that flashing panoply?’ There is but one way,-put on the Lord Jesus Christ. If we commit ourselves to Him by faith, and front our temptations in His strength, and thus, as it were, wrap ourselves in Him, He will be to us dress and armour, strength and righteousness. Our old self will fall away, and we shall take no forethought for the flesh, to fulfil the lusts thereof.”
“To represent Christ reverently, respectfully, and righteously on the earth, we must work out this salvation we have received from our Lord Jesus Christ in fear and trembling, recognizing we are weak but He is Strong and so we must lean completely on Him and never trust ourselves, less we fail, fall, and falter in false humility.” Clifford D. Tate, Sr.
If you do not know the Lord Jesus Christ and His amazing healing power, pray this from your heart to the Lord Jesus Christ (you speaking directly to Him), Dear Lord Jesus, I confess to You that I am a sinner and I need Your forgiveness. I believe You shed Your Blood and died for my sins. I believe that You rose from the dead proving that You alone are God. I repent of my sins. I want to turn from my sins. I ask You Dear Lord Jesus to come into my heart and take control of my life. I want You to be my Lord, Savior, and my God. Amen...
Sincerely in Christ,
Clifford D. Tate, Sr.
Author of “Silent Assassins of the Soul - Are you Broken by Pornography and Masturbation? You can be Restored by the Lord Jesus Christ and brought into Deliverance, Freedom, and Victory! A Guide for Men and Women in the Enemy’s Crosshairs” e-book available now @ Amazon Kindle, @ Apple I Bookstore for IPod, Barnes and Noble for Nook, Reader Store for Sony Reade, Kobo, Copia, Gardners, Baker and Taylor, and eBookPie…