23. Then the soldiers, when they had crucified Jesus, took His garments
and made four parts, to each soldier a part, and also the tunic.
Now the tunic was without seam, woven from the top in one piece.
24. They said therefore among themselves, “Let us not tear it, but cast lots for it,
whose it shall be,” that the Scripture might be fulfilled which says:
“They divided My garments among them, and for My clothing they cast lots.
” Therefore the soldiers did these things.
So, The Lord Jesus was crucified without any clothing on. When He died on the cross, Joseph of Arimathea and Nichodemus brought spices and linen to wrap His body and bury Him in the tomb. But when He resurrected on the third day, the linens were still in the tomb, however, He appeared to Mary Magdalene gloriously robed. And went back to heaven in that glorious robe on Him. Our Lord was first stripped naked, before he was clothed in glory.
Joseph’s garment was stripped off his body four times on his way to fulfilling his divine purpose. On each occasion, he was stripped almost naked as he journeyed forward towards his becoming the ruler who would receive the worship and the bowing of the sun, moon and the eleven stars.
On him, first, was the coat of many colors which was his factor of pride. The garment separated him from his brothers. He was his father’s chosen one. His father’s pet. Loved above the rest. Yet, The Lord must prepare him ahead of his future assignment. So, he must be striped naked of all his pride and be humbled to be bendable in His hand. Slaves are usually sold without any clothes on them. So, his gorgeous coat needed to be stripped off him for him to start his journey to his divine destination.
He was sold as a slave into Portiphar’s house. He became his househelp, wearing an official cloth again. And the Bible says, that Joseph was made the overseer of Portiphar’s house and the house was so blessed because of Joseph. He was so comfortable again. But God must move him on.
Then, when it was time for him to move on in his journey toward fulfilling the plans of God, his clothes had to be stripped off him again.
11. But it happened about this time, when Joseph went into the house
to do his work, and none of the men of the house was inside,
12. that she caught him by his garment, saying, “Lie with me.”
But he left his garment in her hand, and fled and ran outside.
Next destination: Dungeon. Apparently, he came into the prison either naked or half-naked, and then, must have been given a prison garment to wear. After more than three years, it was time for The Lord to move him forward towards his divine destination, he had to be stripped of his garment again. However, this time, it was a pleasant derobing:
Then Pharaoh sent and called Joseph, and they brought him quickly
out of the dungeon; and he shaved, changed his clothing, and came to Pharaoh.
He changed his dungeon clothing. The chariot from the palace was outside to convey him to the palace to see the king. This new clothing can not be slaves’ clothing, but the ones befitting the palace. Do you see that each time Joseph allowed himself to be stripped of his garment of pride, and of comfort, he was moved forward towards destination. Finally, he stood before Pharaoh, unconsciously standing on the ground of his destination. He interpreted the King’s dream and gave him the solutions. Next, he was stripped of his clothes for the last time:
Then Pharaoh took his signet ring off his hand and put it on Joseph’s hand;
and he clothed him in garments of fine linen and put a gold chain around his neck.
Four times his garments were removed from him to pave the way for his moving foward towards his destination.
What is this garment that must be stripped off us if we must move on towards the destination of our earth purpose? God does not use a man without stripping him of his pride first. And if a man is not willing to be stripped of his coats of many colors, he is not ready to be sold as slaves towards his ministerial destination. Your coat of many colors is your pride. Your ambitions. Your tastes. Many of these have to be submitted at the feet of Christ before we can be usable in his hands.
Many gave their lives to Christ without any readiness to be stripped of their pride. The day Peter, James and John were to be called to follow Jesus, their professional pride was seriously deflated. They had labored all the night, employing all their professional tactics without catching a single fingerling. They caught nothing. They were derobed.
Their skillful wisdom in catching fishes had failed them. They were disappointed by all their skills, until the Master showed them that only with His power and wisdom can anyone succeed
Surely He scorns the scornful, but gives grace to the humble.
Everyone proud in heart is an abomination to the Lord;
Though they join forces, none will go unpunished.
Many times, The Lord could not use some people, before of their garment of academic pride which they have failed to pull off and be usable and bendable. Joseph was humbled, he was thrown into a dry pit before he could be sold as a slave to those people who would help him get to his land of purpose.
But some people would not part away with the pride of their family status. This is what has influence the marital choice of some brothers and sisters. They would not get married to anyone below their status. They would never believe The Lord could lead them to say “Yes” to the proposal of a brother who is so low to their status. They want to rule in Egypt, but never wanted to be stripped off their garment of academic, professional, and social pride that would allow them to move to the next phase of their calling.
Before The Lord could begin to communicate with Saul the persecutioner, he had to be thrown off the back of his high horse and made blind so that a young lad led him to Damascus. Next, he was so humbled that he had to be made to take refuge in the house of one of those he was going to arrest. He was stripped naked of his coat of many colors before he could move on to the next phase of his ministerial destination.
Next, his garment of comfort was stripped off him for him to move forward. He has become comfortable as chief of househelps in Portiphar’s house, but that was not his destination. He had to be moved forward. Every sacrifice you make to keep your faith and every step you take to refuse to compromise your faith is an act of stripping yourself of your Garment of Comfort. The demotion and degrading that followed your refusal to join your senior staff in perpetrating fraud, is an act of stripping off your Garment of Comfort. Every demotion and degrading you face move you closer to the throne of your rulling.
I encourage you to keep moving towards your throne. Keep putting off yourself every garment of Pride and coat of Comforts. Every refusal to compromise that brings you into trouble, has only put you in the dungeon that is getting you closer to the Palace. The Lord looks at the proud afar off, but gives grace to the humble.
He does a lot of things to us to remove our pride, so that we could be entitled to His grace which we desperately need.
May The Lord bless you richly as you allow Him to strip you naked so that He could cloth you with His garment of Grace.
Source: Mike Bamiloye