Improperly Dressed

John Maassen

READ : Matthew 22:1-14

In 1981 my wife set her alarm at 3:00 a.m. in a Toronto motel room in order to watch the royal wedding of Charles and Diana on TV. And the whole world was watching with her.

Jesus tells us of a royal wedding where everyone was a “no-show!” They went about their business. But, some killed the messengers who had invited them! They were punished. After new invitations had been sent out, a guest appeared improperly dressed. (There was a strict dress code in those days.) He was bound and “cast into the outer darkness.”

That wedding symbolizes the constantly recurring celebrations of the church as the “Bride of Christ.” All the world is invited! The invitation comes from pulpits, broadcasts, in print, by word of mouth, on city streets and in primal jungles. Some reject the invitation rudely. Some even persecute the messengers. Others attend. But they take their invitations lightly. In Jesus’ day it was reflected in what they wore. Isaiah describes the proper garb as “the garments of salvation . . . [and] . . . the robes of righteousness,” both of which the King Himself supplies (Isa. 61:10).

We’re much more casual in our dress at worship today. I don’t think that matters to the Lord. But should it reflect a carelessness of heart, then beware!


Lord, “I want to be a Christian, in my heart, in my heart.” For Jesus loves me! Amen.