That the experience of a Christian is inward and heartfelt, we do not at all contest. It is indeed an inward experience that grants the soul new life and power over sin, but these truths will in no wise negate our argument.
The rock and rap musicians of our age are consistent with their profession. Not only do they profess to be something, but they look like what they are. Take the young man with the sleeveless shirt and baggy shorts who loves the game of basketball. Not only does he love it in his heart, but he is consistent with that affection and appears the part of a basketball player. Then we have the country music singer who appears to be exactly what he is.
All of these that we have mentioned have strong merit to the claims of what they are. Now we come to the professed Christian world, and what contradiction greets our eyes. The so-called “Jesus people” look like the “rap people.” The “Jesus lovers” look like the “rock lovers.” We do not seek to offend any child of God whatsoever, but may this simply awaken your better judgment. Let me put it this way. If I were a soldier in the US Army and constantly affirmed my love for my country, would I not be suspect if I wore the uniform of another country? Who would trust me? My contradiction of dress would discredit my claims.
May every true Christian see this clearly. The professed Christian world, generally, cannot win the world today because they are the world. They are involved in all that the world is involved in, and not only so, but they look like the world also. We do not say that the way we dress makes us Christians, but by virtue of being Christians, we will look like Christians.
We cannot win the world by conforming to it. We know that Paul said he became all things to all men, but this same Paul told us not to be conformed to this world. Paul would have lawfully and scripturally gone as far as he could to help people. If we do more than this, we are operating in our own minds and this brings tragedy, not salvation. The professed Christian world has conformed so well to the secular world that there is nothing to win people to. This is a fact. If our Jesus parties, raps, rocks, square dances, dresses in Tommy Hilfiger clothing, and leaves people with no definite soul transformation that gives them power over sin, what do we really have to offer? May every true Christian rally to these clear truths.
Does Jesus really care that much about our outward appearance? Yes, insomuch that the scriptures teach us how to dress and how not to dress (I Pet. 3:3-5, I Tim.2:9-10). If you had disciples whom you commanded to represent yourself to the world, how would you want them to represent you? Would you not want them to represent you according to who you really were? If you were a cowboy, would you want your disciples to look like rappers? Would the president of the United States send people with pink hair and shorts on across the seas for peace talks?
How much more would the holy and perfectly pure God of heaven not send His people forth in this way. God is not a compromiser. He’s not in the business of bending and bowing to the world. He rightfully demands our obedience to His rules for our own good. In ourselves we do not know how to win the world, but Christ does. Worldly men will get tired of the world and all it has to offer. God forbid that professing Christians offer these weary souls the exact thing that they are weary of. May God help us.
Of course there will always be those religious people who hate the truths that we here present. Such may discard all this as “nonsense,” but the true child of God will be concerned about the desires of Christ. Outward appearance is very important. To dress like a Christian doesn’t make one a Christian, but this is hardly an excuse not to dress like one.
Do you look like a Christian?