THE BEST-DRESSED PERSON IN
The Context. Joshua the High Priest
stands as a representative of the priesthood and the people of Israel. They are wayward and dirty in the sight
of the Lord. However, God is about
to cleanse them and make a vessel of honor out of these wayward people. When Joshua first appears in this
chapter he is dressed in filthy garments.
God promises to change his raiment and dress him in robes of
speaks about the change the Lord makes in every life that comes to Him by
faith. Today, I want to zero in on
the last phrase in verse 4.
God says, “I will clothe thee with change of raiment.”
There is an old
saying that goes, “The clothes make the man.” The idea here is
that your garments say a lot about you.
Our world places a lot of emphasis on external appearances. In fact,
every year, certain groups gather to discuss who the best-dressed man and woman
are. Last year, actress Catherine
Zeta-Jones was named best-dressed woman and news anchor Matt Lauer was named
best-dressed man. The Senate has decided that Hillary Rodham Clinton is the
best-dressed member of their number. While the world may concern itself with
what a man wears on the outside, God is far more concerned with what a person
wears on the inside, 1 Sam. 16:7.
speaking, every person is wearing one of three types of garments today. I want to discuss those types of
garments. As I do, I want you to
examine yourself and see which type you are wearing. If you see that you are dressed in less
than heaven’s best, then today is the day when you can come to the Lord for a
change of raiment. This morning, I
would like to preach for a while on the subject: The Best-Dressed Person
In Town. Let’s look into
the Word of God together this morning and discover these types of spiritual
THE STAINED RAIMENT OF
A. This verse tells us that Joshua the High
Priest stood before the Lord in “filthy”
He was dressed in dirty, filthy rags. He is a picture of every person who is
lost in sin. The Bible tells us
that our own goodness, or the clothing of our soul if you will, is nothing more
than the filthiest of rags, Isa. 64:6. In fact, the rags described in this
verse are of such a filthy nature that their intended use should not be
discussed in a congregation such as this.
Suffice it to say, it is the most filthy garments and rags that can be
B. This is a hard truth to hear, but in our
natural state, mankind is filthy in the sight of God.
When he looks at the lost sinner, God sees one who is
unfit, or unable to stand in the presence of the Lord. He looks at a person who is defiled,
unclean and totally unable to approach the Lord, Isa.
C. My friends, this is the stark reality of
sin and what it does to the sinner.
It renders us
unfit to approach the Lord. It defiles us and
makes us thoroughly unclean in His sight.
Sadly, every person born into this world is in this condition. As I have shared with you many times, we
are all sinners, Rom. 3:10, 23; Gal. 3:22. There is not a person born into this
world that is free from the stain and blight of sin, Rom. 5:12. Even the smallest baby is touched by the
awful stain of sin, Psa. 58:3.
D. Before I leave this subject behind, I
want to show you from the Word of God just what sin does to its
Renders the sinner
spiritually dead – Eph. 2:1; Pro. 21:16
Separates from God –
Prevents prayer and
worship – Psalm 66:18
Destines the sinner to
a life of misery – Pro. 13:15; Isa. 59:8
Dooms the sinner to an
eternity in Hell – Psa. 9:17; 2 Thes. 1:8-9; Luke 16:19-31; Rev.
Will cause the sinner
to hear the most awful words that will ever fall upon the ears of any man,
Ultimately sin will
take the sinner to the Lake of Fire – Rev. 20:10-15; Pro.
E. My friend, if you have never received
Jesus Christ as your personal Savior, this is your
life I am talking about today! If you have never been saved and are
dressed in the garments of sin, please come to Him and be saved today! Do not wait until a better time! Do not even wait until the
invitation. Get to Jesus while
there is time! Come to Jesus while you can, Isa. 55:6. Get to Jesus while He is calling,
John 6:44; Gen. 6:3; 2 Cor. 6:2!
Flee the wrath to come sinner!
Flee to Jesus while the door is open!
v. 4a THE STRANGE RAIMENT OF
new garments to be placed upon him. What we see here is a work of the Lord
in this man’s life. It is a
blessing when the Lord removes our filthy, sin-stained rags and gives us a new
suit of clothes. However, it is
another thing altogether when we try to do it ourselves.
B. Our world is filled with billions of
people who have tried to take care of their filthy
garments themselves. They have sought to trade their dirty,
filthy garments for ones of their own design. This is a problem that is as old as
man. In the Garden of Eden when man
brought sin into the world, Adam and Eve sought to cover their nakedness by
garments of their own making. They
made themselves garments out of fig leaves. Without a doubt they looked good enough
in their own eyes, but in the eyes of the Lord, they were as naked as they could
C. I am convinced that most people know
they should live cleaner lives than they do. I am
just as convinced that most men have an inward desire
to be in a relationship with God.
They believe in Him and know that some day they will face Him in
judgment. They have a void in their hearts and they want it to be filled. As a result of that desire many people
turn to religion. That is, they will start going to church. Others seek the self-improvement
method. They will turn over a new
leaf. You know, they will stop
drinking and cussing and running around.
They will give up all that stuff that sinners do. In other words, they will construct
themselves some garments of fig leaves.
Sadly, this will never work!
Regardless of what a man does to the outside, he can never change the
inside! When the Lord looks at us
He sees as we really are. Not as
think we are. Not as others think
we are. He sees the truth about us,
D. Since this is true, the self-righteous
person, the religious person, the person who lives a
good life and the person who cleans up his life will
never please God and they are all headed to the same Hell as the rank
sinner! Friends, there is no
difference between the atheist and the most religious person in the world, if
that religious person has never trusted Jesus! There is no difference between the worst
serial killer the world has ever seen and the best church member we have ever
seen, if that church member is not saved.
Do you understand that religion will never save you? Do you understand that your church
membership will never save you? Do
you understand that your good works will never save you?
is that all of these merely treat the symptoms and
not the problem! The problem is not
what a man does! The problem is
what a man is! Man is a sinner, and
no amount of cleaning up the outside will fix the problem in the sinner’s
heart. In fact, Jesus indicated
that there were problems that came along with a man trying to clean up his own
life, Matt. 12:43-45. There
is no way the flesh can sustain clean living. Even if it could, it could never erase
the stain of sin. There is only one
remedy and that is salvation through the blood of Jesus Christ, Titus 3:5;
Acts 16:31; Rom. 10:9; John 3:16; John 14:6. The change will never be produced from
within, but it must be produced from above, John 3:3, 7; Eph. 2:8-9. However, those who come to God His way
find the cleansing their souls so desperately need, Isa.
You will never do it. Jesus
Christ has already pleased God for you, 1 John 2:2; Isa. 53:11. If you will trust Him for your soul’s
salvation, He will make you pleasing in the sight of the Lord. It isn’t being good that gets a person
into Heaven. It is being
saved! Are you religious, or have
you been redeemed?
III. v. 4b-5
THE STUNNING RAIMENT OF
best-dressed person in town today isn’t wearing an Armani suit or a Donna Karan
dress. The best-dressed person is
that one who is saved by the grace of God and is dressed in the righteousness of
Christ. Jesus shared a parable in Matthew 22:1-14 that warrants our
attention this morning. This
parable speaks to the notion that a person must be properly attired to enter the
presence of the Lord and to be accepted by Him. I wonder, when the Heaven’s list of the
best-dressed people is updated, will your name be on that list? Friend, what kind of garments is your
soul clothed in today? If you
cannot honestly say that you are saved by grace, washed in the blood of Jesus
and headed to Heaven, you need to come to the Lord this morning and be
saved. Will you do that