(The linen garments and the robe)

Tuesday Morning Bible Study

November 8, 2016, the Year of Our Lord

Pastor Carolyn Sissom


Today is election day in 2016.  I am directed by the Lord today to teach on the Priesthood and felt specifically to continue with Aaron’s Garments with the emphasis in this teaching on the linen garments and the robe.  I didn’t understand why I would be preaching this today until I came to the close of my study.


You will recall that I preached Sunday morning on Joel’s army.  In Joel 2:17, the prophet cried out “Spare your people, O Lord, and give not your heritage to reproach, that the heathen should rule over them; wherefore should they say among the people, Where is their God.”


“Christians will again stand before the Lord and be asked, why did you give your Christian heritage over to the Heathen?  Why did you allow Christianity to become a reproach?  Let them not mock us by saying, “Where is your God?” (Sunday sermon)


There is today a long line in the corrupt “system” who would strip us of our heritage, our authority, our righteousness, glory and mock us.   


The Evangelicals are the only people group who stood with Donald J. Trump throughout this entire election process.  All of the powers and principalities of the mouth of the beast have withstood Him.  The dragon is defeated, but he still has a mouth.  The only way to overcome the mouth of the dragon is with the mouth of the Lord---a prophetic church full of the living Word. 


There are demonized intelligences sent forth to harass and mock the elect.  But we have been clothed upon with the garments of a Royal Priesthood.


Join me as the Lord has led me this night through the beauty of the precious garments of our Great High Priest, Jesus Christ  and our inheritance as His Royal Priesthood.  Satan thought he had stripped Jesus of His royal heritage when he challenged Him,   If you be the Son of God?”  But Satan could not and cannot!


I continue to stand amazed as the Lord leads me in His Word week after week.  It is so sweet. 


“Much detail is subscribed to the making of the garments for Aaron and his sons, so much so that one’s attention is naturally drawn to the meaning of it all.  Scripture tells us:  Now all these things happened unto them for an example and they are written for our learning, upon whom the ends of the world are come.”


It is the glory of God to conceal a thing; but the honor of kings to search out a matter.” (Prov. 25:2)  As the High Priest was a type of the Great High Priest, Jesus; so the garments of the High Priest were a type of the character of Jesus Christ.  Likewise, as the sons of the High Priests were priests, even so the dress of the priests typifies the character of the believers.  The chief lesson to be learned from these robes is the character which is essentially Christ’s, and then the character of the believer in our relationship to Christ.


Psa. 133:2: “It is like the precious ointment upon the head, that ran down upon the beard, even Aaron’s beard; that went down to the skirts of his garments.”


In Exodus and Leviticus there is great detail concerning the priestly clothing and consecration.  The priesthood, its robes and ritual were not an afterthought but the very life of the tabernacle service.  The ministry of the priesthood was God ordained. 


The ministry had to be recognized by those who entered it as a high calling demanding the very best that man possesses.  Then it must be continually recognized by the people as a God-chosen avenue for conveying His Truth to the Church through prophetic revelation from age to age. 


The quality of the whole of these vestments, whether it was texture, material or workmanship, was the very best of its kind---fine linen, pure gold, precious stones, costly ointment, cunning workmanship, all used by wise hearts.  This was because it was all a type of Christ’s character, and nothing but the very highest quality will do to portray Him.


Jesus was Divinity manifested in humanity so that humanity might take on Divinity by becoming the sons of God.    Nothing but that which was unalloyed could represent Him, Who was “holy, harmless, undefiled, and separate from sinners.”  He is wisdom, righteousness, sanctification, and redemption.  He is the personification of love, joy, peace, long-suffering, gentleness, goodness, faith, meekness, and temperance.  Majesty and humility were blended in Him.  Mercy and truth meet in Him and kiss each other.  Humanity and Divinity harmonize only in the High Priest of our profession.


Aaron was clothed upon with these garments, thus fitting him for the office to which he was called, and covering him with a dignity he did not otherwise possess, for the robes were part of his consecration.


What a contrast to the Lord Jesus Christ.  Character, not clothes, fitted Him; His glory and dignity he had from eternity, they were essentially His. 


Exodus 28: 1-3:  Take Aaron, your brother, and his sons with him from among the children of Israel, that he may minister unto me in the priest’s office, even Aaron, Nadab, Abihu, Eleazar and Ithamar.  You shall make holy garments for Aaron, your brother, for glory and for beauty.  You shall speak unto all who are wise hearted, whom I have filled with the spirit of wisdom, that they make Aaron’s garments to consecrate him that he may minister unto me in the priest’s office.”


The ministry of these five men is a type of the five-fold ministry of the Apostle, Prophet, Pastor, Evangelist and Teacher in union with Jesus Christ.  God chose five men, and then referred to them in the singular pronoun, “that he may minister.”  The ministry of these five men was inseparably wrapped up in each other, so that God saw them as one.  Aaron did not minister without the priests (except on the Day of Atonement).


We, too, like the priests of old, cannot minister apart from our Great High Priest upon Whom we have to depend at all times. 


The vestments included a coat with a girdle, a robe, an ephod, the curious girdle, the breastplate with Urim and Thummim, the MITRE and the Holy Crown, and afterward there is mention of breeches.  


The priest in his robe of “glory and beauty” was adorned in harmony with his surroundings---the tabernacle; the same colors, some of the same materials, and the same skilful workmanship.


This again reminds us that God loves harmony, and all His work is harmonious.  Could we imagine it otherwise?  We see much today in Christian work that is discord.  The discord is never of the Lord.


The Priest was clothed from head to foot with linen, which is righteousness.


Exodus 39: 27-29: “They made coats of fine linen of woven work for Aaron, and for his sons, and a MITRE of fine linen, and goodly bonnets of fine linen, and linen breeches of fine twined linen; and a girdle of fine twined linen, and blue, and purple, and scarlet, of needlework; as the LORD commanded Moses.”


 Jesus was found in the “fashion of a man.”  There is a Divine pattern worked into His human frame which reveals Him to be the Son of God. 


This “fine linen,” such as cannot be purchased or even manufactured today was an Egyptian art which died with the ancient Egyptians.  The beauty of this linen is reported to be comparable to present day silk, and not inferior to our finest cambric (batiste).  How could these Israelites in a wilderness possess such material?  They spoiled the Egyptians!” (Exod. 3:22).


Not only did this material have a fine texture which holds the same typology as the fine flour of the show-bread and the fine flour of the Meal (meat) offering, but we have very reason to believe it was pure white.


What a matchless picture of Him, Who in Rev. 1: 13-14 was “clothed with a garment down to the foot” and Whose “hairs were white like wool, as white as snow”; enveloped in a spotless purity and the essence of perfect righteousness.


Thus we see our Great high priest and thus he was when he was found in fashion as a man.  All who spoke of Him in the Holy Scripture attest to His perfect and flawless life.  Meeting temptation in the wilderness, He overcame it and remained sinless; associating with sinners He was not contaminated; mixing amongst publicans and harlots, He stood pure and holy---as His life, so in His death.


In this one garment High Priest and Priests were alike, for all wore the white coat with this one difference, It was the High Priest’s undergarment, but with the priest it was his only garment. 


Righteousness is the foundation of all that Christ is.  Our merit is an imputed righteousness.  As the sons of God, we are clothed in His righteousness because we have been washed in His Blood.  Having received this imputed righteousness, we are able to say with the prophet Isaiah: “I will greatly rejoice in the Lord, my soul shall be joyful in my God; for he has clothed me with the garments of salvation.  He has covered me with the robe of righteousness…” (Isa. 61:10)


The coat was put on the moment the priest was washed, but not so with Jesus.  It was never put upon Him.  When he divested Himself of everything that He had with the Father and in eternity, when he had stripped Himself of His glory and made Himself of no reputation, this character remained inseparably His.  He was holy.  He was righteous, and none could rob Him. 


Attached to this embroidered coat was the Girdle.  This is nearly always a symbol of service.  The girded loins denote readiness for action.  This must always be the attitude of the priest and it is certainly true of Christ, for of Him it is said:  He ever makes intercession for us.”   This linen girdle was not the curious girdle of verse 8.  It was attached to the undergarment and so was not seen except on the Day of Atonement.


Isaiah speaking of Christ says: “But with righteousness shall He judge the poor, and reprove with equity for the meek of the earth; and He shall smite the earth with the rod of His mouth, and with the breath of His lips shall He slay the wicked.  Righteousness shall be the girdle of His loins, and faithfulness the girdle of His reins.”


Paul referring to the believers calls us to put on the “girdle of truth.”  Therefore, Christ and His people are not only clothed with righteousness but that righteousness is bound to us by the righteous, eternal and unalterable Word of the Living God.


This coat with its girdle, as well as the more gorgeous apparel, is called a robe of glory and beauty.


You shall make the robe of the ephod all of blue.  There shall be a hole in the top of it, in the midst thereof; it shall have a binding of woven work round about the hole of it, as it were the hold of a habergeon, that it be not rent.  Beneath upon the hem you shall make pomegranates of blue, of purple, and of scarlet, round about the hem, with bells of gold between them all around….It shall be upon Aaron to minister.  His sound shall be heard when he goes in to the holy place before the LORD, and when he comes out that he does not die.”  (Exod. 28: 31-35).


The robe of the ephod is the first of the garments which belong expressly to the High Priest.


This is the first time the word “robe” occurs in Scripture, and it stands in contrast to the coat.  The robe is always worn as the symbol of office and authority. 


Job 29:14: “”I put on righteousness, and it clothed me; my judgment was as a robe and a diadem.” 


The robe carries with it dignity and royalty.  The robes worn by judges, clergy, and academia even today dignify a man/woman for the office they hold.  Every servant of the Lord who ministers in holy things should himself respect his office and should be respected because of his office.


With regard to the robe put on Jesus, “and they stripped Him, and put on Him a scarlet robe… and mocked Him, saying, Hail King of the Jews.”


Aaron had no claim to kingship.  His robes only dignified him in his priestly capacity. Jesus dignified the realm of royalty as well as that of priest.


Royalty is the underlying truth of the garment so far as its name is concerned and reveals that royalty which belongs to Christ of God, the Great High Priest.  The priestly office of Christ supersedes that of Aaron.  He has bestowed upon His church the honor of a royal priesthood.


1 Peter 2:9: “You are a chosen generation, a royal priesthood, a holy nation, peculiar people; that you should show forth the praises of him who has called you out of darkness into his marvelous light.”


The nature of the material of the ephod is omitted.  The emphasis is that it is made of blue.  Blue is a color of the Spirit and of Grace.


The High Priest may endeavor to be gracious, but Christ is grace.  “Grace and truth came by Jesus Christ (Jn. 1:17).  The beautiful blue sky ever reminds us of judgment.  The blue sky brings cheer and reminds us of the goodness of the Lord and His great grace.


Blue was the color which abounded in both the Tabernacle and its ministry.  It was in the veil, the curtains, the door, and the gate.  Every piece of furniture was covered with a blue cloth when in transit.  A blue lace fastened the holy crown to the head of the priest, while a lace of blue secured the breastplate of judgment to the ephod.  Blue was worked into both the ephod and the curious girdle, while the robe was “all of blue.”  As blue was in abundance in the Tabernacle, so grace is to be seen everywhere in the Church of God today. 


By the grace of God, I am what I am; and His grace which was bestowed upon me was not in vain; but I labored more abundantly than they all; yet not I, but the grace of God which was with me.” (1 Cor. 15:10)


This robe also sets forth His Divinity.  As the blue vaulted heavens are immeasurable so is the Divine Son of God.  The robe was woven in one piece---it was seamless.  This indeed was cunning work.  It was the work of an artificer.  But no loom on earth could ever have produced the wonderful fabric of the Incarnate God.  While Christ was born of a woman and found in fashion as a man yet that did not alter His external existence.


He was with the Father from the foundation of the world.  He is eternal.  His life is seamless.  It had not beginning, it knows no end. 


Jesus knowing that the Father had given all things into His hands, and that He was come from God and went to God; He rose from supper, and laid aside His garments…” (Jn. 13: 3-4).


The robe of the ephod was not only seamless but it was made in such a way that it was not possible for a man to tear it.  There was a hole in the top of it through which the head passed.  This hole had a neck band, which we are told, was bound to the strength of habergeon.  This is an armored plate or a coat of mail.  This instruction was given to Moses by God, therefore it was in the Divine Plan.


There was a long line of those who would strip Jesus our Great High Priest of His Divinity.  But they could not and cannot.  Every time man inflicted a doubt, saying, “If you be the Son of God,” God was there to prove that He was.  The Devil said, “If you be the Son of God” in Judea’s wilderness, but he was vanquished with “It is written.”  While Christ was on the Cross, the people said:  Let Him save Himself if He be Christ the chosen of God.”  The soldiers said:  If thou be the king of the Jews, save yourself.”  One of the thieves joined the cry of doubt, saying: “if you be Christ, save yourself and us.”  But to all these “ifs” came the challenge of the resurrection on the third day.  Man said, “Is not this the carpenter’s son?”  God said: “This is my Beloved Son in Whom I am well pleased.”


It was thought that the robe of Divinity had been rent from the Lord on the day they laid Him in the tomb and set the seal upon the stone---But thanks be to God, who gave us the victory through our Lord Jesus Christ.


We have said that the blue robe was an emblem of kingly grace.  How many would endeavor to show us grace today in shreds, a weak and broken grace that cannot keep a man?


How many would challenge the band of Evangelicals who have stood strong in faith that we will not give our heritage to reproach that the heathen shall rule over us so they will taunt us and say “Where is your God?”


A prophetic Word was spoken from the pulpit last Sunday that because of the repentance and prayers of this army of Evangelicals who have fought in faith and prayed, the Lord will turn his wrath from our nation.


For by grace are you saved through faith; and that not of yourselves, it is the gift of God.”  “For the grace of God that brings salvation has appeared to all men.”  “that being justified by His grace, we should be made heirs according to the hope of eternal life.”


Our Great High Priest has blessed his church with all the blessings and authority of a Royal Priesthood.


Rev. 19:13: “And he was clothed with a vesture dipped in blood; and his name is called the Word of God.”


I must stop for now; but we will preach on as the Lord leads week after week.  Next week I will be visiting my mother in Missouri for her 96TH birthday.  Rev. Henry Johnson will be teaching the Bible Study.  The Lord has blessed him with a keen prophetic gift.


Carolyn Sissom, Pastor

Eastgate Ministries Church


Scripture from K.J.V.

I entered into the labors of Charles W. Slemming, These are the Garments.  Brother Slemming is native to England and passed to glory in 1974.  I could not find the date of his birth.   His glorious Office of Teacher has blessed me for many decades.  Comments and conclusions are my own and not meant to reflect the views of Bro. Slemming. 

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