An Issue Of Holiness

Holiness is an issue of the heart. And the issues of life cometh out of the heart. That’s another way of saying that what is IN the heart is shown OUTWARDLY.
Make no mistake about it — God requires both! Both the Old Testament and the New Testament are filled with instructions regarding outward things: clothes, ornaments, hair, social and public behavior, friendships and relationships, money, and many other OUTWARD things.
It is unreasonable to think one can be holy INWARDLY, and unholy OUTWARDLY. God’s Word teaches better than that. The holy vessels of the ancient temple were consecrated to the Lord, we who ARE the vessels of the Lord should also be consecrated — made holy.
Consecration is not a foreign concept to the secular mind. We see it exemplified in the Copyright, the Patent, and the Trademark. Each of these speaks of PRIVATE OWNERSHIP, RIGHTS OF CONTROL, and SPECIAL PRIVILEGE.
McDonalds has a right to virtually every word, picture, character and concept they use. NO ONE but McDonalds may make use of their property. It is sanctified to the corporation. The golden arches, the clown, the cartoon characters, everything is holy to them. They must always look a certain way, dress a certain way, act a certain way. In the same way, it is forbidden to associate any of the McDonalds products with anybody else’s. You won’t see a Burger King Whopper served in a McDonalds restaurant. It is a place APART from Burger King. Sanctified and holy to the company.
Society in our day gives more sanctity to a hamburger factory than to the Kingdom of God. If McDonalds requires a person to wear certain clothes, that is perfectly reasonable. If the Church sets out a dress code of modesty, we are blasted as being legalistic, in bondage, and Pharisaical. If McDonalds requires punctuality and behavior guidelines, that seems to be a reasonable expectation. If the church teaches that we should abstain from social behavior that is a discredit to godliness, we are viewed as mind controllers, cultish and fanatical.
But in the final analysis, Christian standards of dress and behavior are every bit as legitimate (and more so) than McDonalds. God’s ways are higher than men’s ways.
For His reasons, we observe Deuteronomy 22:5, which says that a woman should not wear that which pertaineth to a man, nor a man that which pertains to a woman. Gender distinction has always been a priority with God. For that reason, Apostolics are recognized by their dress code. Men dress like men, and ladies like ladies.
God, through the Apostle Paul set forth instructions pertaining to hair, in 1 Corinthians 11, specifying that a woman’s uncut hair was a glory to her, a symbolic spiritual covering (representing the doctrine of Jesus Christ as a covering for the church) and a man’s short hair symbolize his role as head of the marriage and typologically as Christ. Women with shorn (cut) hair and men with long hair were both shamed by the Apostle. So we observe these teachings, and the world takes note, often critically.
All the same, they are universal principles, good not only in matters of hair, but in every area of our lives – secular and spiritual. The need for separation from the world is not difficult to explain or practice if you truly want to be holy unto the Lord.