Naked in Church
I can remember one Sunday at church, a particularly ornery boy said something along the lines of "Did you know if it weren't for Adam and Eve we'd all be running around naked?"
Perhaps it was the shock of talking about nudity in church or maybe it was the image the question conjured, but either way I can still vividly remember the incident. As an adult I now realize that that boy's theology was slightly off.
Adam and Eve had no idea they were naked until they sinned. Being naked didn't matter, there wasn't any shame in it, until sin entered the world. The real shame was the spiritual nakedness, not the physical.
Genesis 3 : 7 ESV
"Then the eyes of both were opened, and they knew that they were naked.
And they sewed fig leaves together and made themselves loincloths."
The immediate implication of sin was shame and the immediate response to shame was the desire to hide under clothes and hide from God.
Genesis 3 : 10 ESV
"And he said, “I heard the sound of you in the garden,
and I was afraid, because I was naked, and I hid myself.”'
God asks Adam how he knew he was naked and makes a provision for the spiritual and physical nakedness. The first animal was sacrificed. The blood covered the sin and the flesh covered the nakedness.
Adam and Eve tried to cover their nakedness with leaves but that was unsatisfactory. They used man-made methods to make themselves right with God but God knew a blood sacrifice is the only way their relationship could ever be right.
From this time forward, God's people were required to make blood sacrifices to be made right with God. The Old Testament is full of specifics laws and regulations the Israelites had to time and time again to cover their spiritual nakedness.
However, these sacrifices were incomplete. The author of Hebrews said, "But in these sacrifices there is a reminder of sins every year. For it is impossible for the blood of bulls and goats to take away sins." (Hebrews 10:3-4 ESV)
The sacrifices were not enough; they were only a reminder of sin's penalty and foreshadow of Christ. They alone could not take any sin. But God, again, makes a provision.
Romans 8 : 3 ESV
"For God has done what the law, weakened by the flesh, could not do.
By sending his own Son in the likeness of sinful flesh and for sin,
he condemned sin in the flesh."
And because Christ was the perfect sacrifice, He only had to die once.
1 Peter 3 : 18 ESV
"For Christ also suffered once for sins, the righteous for the unrighteous,
that he might bring us to God, being put to death in the flesh
but made alive in the spirit."
Christ's own blood covers our spiritual nakedness and because Christ lived the perfect life we are presentable to God. I don't know about you but there are days that I try to cover my spiritual nakedness with "fig leaves" like reading my Bible or going to church. These are good things, but not the perfection of Christ. They may hide my sin but they don't make me right with God. Only the blood of Christ
can do that.
Are you living in spiritual nakedness or are you covered in Christ's blood? What are your "fig leaves"?