Two Kinds of Clothing
1 Peter 5:5-7
Likewise, you younger, submit yourselves to the elder. Yes, all of you be subject one to another, and be clothed with humility…

A new suit of clothes! That's a subject in which you all take an interest. When a boy enters the army or navy he puts on a new suit of clothes, blue or red, and that reminds him that he is bound to serve his queen and country, and that he must not disgrace his uniform. I am going to speak to you today about some different kinds of clothing, some good, others bad. First of all, let us think of the clothes which God makes for His beautiful world. He clothes the grass of the field. Every tree has a different shaped dress and a different shade of colour. Even in the winter, when the trees look so bare and cold, they are still clothed by God. Trees have two sets of leaves, one set for the summer, the other for the winter. And God clothes the beasts and birds and gives each exactly the sort of dress which he re quires. You have all seen the mole hills in a field, and sometimes you have caught a glimpse of the mole himself. Well, God has clothed him in a dress like black velvet, which is just fitted for his home underground. The animals which live in cold regions have a warm clothing of fur, and those which live among snow and ice are white, so that their enemies may not easily see them. Now let us think about ourselves. In the Bible we hear of two kinds of clothing, the best and the worst. St. Peter says, "Be clothed with humility"; that's the best clothing. In the hundred and ninth Psalm we are told of a wicked man who "clothed himself with cursing as with a garment"; that's the worst clothing. Now I have noticed that very often when children are growing up into big lads and girls, there is a great change in their manners. Did you ever hear the old fable of the donkey who found a lion's skin? The donkey covered himself with the skin, and tried to play the lion and frighten the people. But some of them spied his long ears, and recognised his well-known voice, and he was soon stripped of his lion's skin and driven away. Now, my boys, if you are tempted to put on a suit of clothes which does not become you, if while still boys you put on the habits of a man, and of a bad man into the bargain, remember the fable of the ass in the lion's skin. But when a child has outgrown the good clothing of humility and put on a full suit of pride, there comes another evil from it. He often gives up his prayers and his Bible. I told you that the Bible speaks of the worst kind of clothing; it tells us of a man who "clothed himself with cursing as with a garment." I take cursing there to mean all sorts of bad language. The old Greeks tell us a story about the death of Hercules. That strong hero had shot his enemy, Nessus, with a poisoned arrow, and the garment of the slain man was all stained with poisoned blood. Before he died Nessus gave his clothing to the wife of Hercules, telling her that it would make her husband love her always. It came to pass after a time that she gave the fatal garment to her husband, and no sooner had he put it on than the poison seized upon him, and when, in his agony, he tried to put off the clothing, it clung all the tighter, and so he died, killed by his own poison. So it is with the man who clothes himself with a garment of cursing or bad talk; it clings to him and poisons him, body and soul. There are several other kinds of clothing of which I might warn you. One of these is self-righteousness. I have seen a man with a very glossy black suit of clothes, very carefully buttoned up, and at first sight he looked most clean and respectable. But when I came to look more closely, I found that his linen was anything but white and clean. His respectability was all outside. If your clothes are old and worn out or do not fit you, what must you do? You must get a new suit. Well, there are some kinds of clothing which we should cast off as soon as possible. If any of you have put on bad habits, filthy clothing, such as pride, or falsehood, or bad talk, you must change your clothes. Cast off the old garment, and go down on your knees, and ask God for Jesus Christ's sake to give you a new dress.

(H. J. Wilmot-Buxton, M. A.)

Parallel Verses
KJV: Likewise, ye younger, submit yourselves unto the elder. Yea, all of you be subject one to another, and be clothed with humility: for God resisteth the proud, and giveth grace to the humble.

WEB: Likewise, you younger ones, be subject to the elder. Yes, all of you clothe yourselves with humility, to subject yourselves to one another; for "God resists the proud, but gives grace to the humble."

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