Watch or Your Garment Will be Set on Fire

“Come, bless the Lord, all you servants of the Lord, who stand by night in the house of the Lord! Lift up your hands to the holy place and bless the Lord! May the Lord bless you from Zion, he who made heaven and earth!”  Psalm 134:1-3

In the Old Testament, the house of the Lord was either the tabernacle or the temple depending on which era Israel was in (we will just reference it as the temple here.)  There was the high priest who was allowed into the holiest part of the temple (but only on certain times and under certain conditions), but there were other “lower level” priests (we will call them watchmen) who had access to the other areas of the temple.  Part of the job of all the priests was to ensure that the lamp (symbolically the Word of God) remained lit at all time, as this fire would be used for the burnt offerings and had to be ready at all times.  It was not allowed to go out, per the Lord’s instructions.  Watchmen (lower level) priests were assigned 24 hours a day, in shifts to make sure the light didn’t go out.  The high priest would come around and check on the watchmen priests on his normal rounds (kind of like a supervisor checking your work), but the first thing he would do on his rounds was to check the light first to make sure that it was still lit, then after, he would check on the priests to see if they were still awake and diligently watching.

What if the watchman priest had fallen asleep on his shift?  The high priest would drop hot coals from his torch on the sleeping priest’s garment as he lay in the temple.  The garment would catch on fire, obviously, and the watchman priest would have no option but to rip his garment off so that his own body didn’t get burned in the fire.  This would leave the priest naked whereby he would run home in shame.  So, when the watchman priest stopped watching, he would be in danger of losing his necessary garment.  It was the watchman’s job to keep his garment and to not lose it.  When he stopped doing his necessary work of watching, he would be endanger of losing his garment and exposing his shame.  The high priest who would do the nightly rounds was called the ‘thief in the night.’

  • 15“Behold, I am coming like a thief! Blessed is the one who stays awake, keeping his garments on, that he may not go about naked and be seen exposed!””  Revelation 16:15
  • “Remember, then, what you received and heard. Keep it, and repent. If you will not wake up, I will come like a thief, and you will not know at what hour I will come against you.”  Revelation 3:3

In relation to us today, once we, as lower level priests (Jesus is our high priest), receive the purified white garment that Christ gives us when we trust in His atonement for our sins, can we be in danger of losing our garment just as the watchman priest was in danger of losing his garment?  Yes, we can soil and even lose our wedding garment if we no longer perform our job as priest, i.e., if we continue to sin and do not remain repentant.

19 Or do you not know that your body is a temple of the Holy Spirit within you, whom you have from God? You are not your own, 20 for you were bought with a price. So glorify God in your body.”  1 Corinthians 6:19-20

  • 26 For if we go on sinning deliberately after receiving the knowledge of the truth, there no longer remains a sacrifice for sins, 27 but a fearful expectation of judgment, and a fury of fire that will consume the adversaries.”  Hebrews 10:26-27
  • “Brothers, if anyone is caught in any transgression, you who are spiritual should restore him in a spirit of gentleness. Keep watch on yourself, lest you too be tempted.”  Galations 6:1
  • “Watch yourselves, so that you may not lose what we have worked for, but may win a full reward.”  2 John 1:8
  • “No one born of God makes a practice of sinning, for God’s seed abides in him; and he cannot keep on sinning, because he has been born of God.”  1 John 3:9.

One of our goals then, as priests, is to be watchful, watchful of the potential of our own sins creeping in, watchful of our brothers and sisters who might need a gentle reminder to run away from sin, and watchful for the return of Jesus.  When we are not watching for all three of our duties, our very garments are in danger of being soiled and even burned up, so it is super important to remain in Him and keep watch.

  • “Abide in me, and I in you. As the branch cannot bear fruit by itself, unless it abides in the vine, neither can you, unless you abide in me. ”  John 15:4
  • “Besides this you know the time, that the hour has come for you to wake from sleep. For salvation is nearer to us now than when we first believed.”  Romans 13:11
  • “Remember, then, what you received and heard. Keep it, and repent. If you will not wake up, I will come like a thief, and you will not know at what hour I will come against you.”  Revelation 3:3

Now concerning the times and the seasons, brothers,[a] you have no need to have anything written to you. For you yourselves are fully aware that the day of the Lord will come like a thief in the night. While people are saying, “There is peace and security,” then sudden destruction will come upon them as labor pains come upon a pregnant woman, and they will not escape.”  1 Thessalonians 5

Interesting News Brief:  The International Global Summit of Peace presented by the UNWTO is being held in Montreal, Canada from Sept 17-21, 2017, just prior to the Sept 23, 2017 Revelation 12 sign and the Feast of Trumpets (Sept 21-23, 2017), the 120th Jubilee year end date, the 40th Jubilee end after Christ, the ending of the Jewish year, 5777 (grace completed).  It will be an interesting week where we should be on high watch.

Father God, Thank you for considering us worthy to serve as your priests by covering us with your own garment, purchased with your own blood.  Help us to always be watchful for sins which can creep into our lives and help us to remain repentant in you.  Help us to also watch for and discern the time of your coming.  We definitely don’t want our garments to be burned up!  In the mighty name of Jesus our Savior.  Amen.

“The one who conquers will be clothed thus in white garments, and I will never blot his name out of the book of life. I will confess his name before my Father and before his angels.”  Revelation 3:5