The Priestly Garments
Updated: Aug 19, 2020
Shiloh Sunday Service (March 17th 2019)
Speaker: Missionary Joanna Bae
Sermon: "The Priestly Garments"
Scripture Reading: Exodus 28:40-43; Isaiah 61:6
The “Good News of Jesus Christ”
In Genesis 3:15, we see the “Proto-Gospel,” meaning the "good news of Jesus Christ.” After the man Adam fell and became a sinner at the Garden of Eden, God did not reject Adam but saved him with the Word of the “Proto-Gospel,” giving Adam another chance. The “Proto-Gospel” is about Jesus Christ who will come and bruise the serpent on the head which is the proclamation of the victory of our Lord and Savior Jesus Christ. The Prophet Isaiah proclaims, “A virgin will bear a son” (Isa 7:14). Thus the Messiah will come through the Virgin Mary and His name will be Immanuel, Jesus Christ (Matt 1:16).
God Makes the “Garments of Skin”
God made garments of skin for Adam and his wife and clothed them (Gen 3:21). This is where the “priestly garments” appear for the first time in the Bible in the Garden of Eden. The word “garment” in the original Hebrew language is ketoneth, meaning "to cover." God was helping mankind cover their shame of sin which teaches us that God Himself makes the clothes and puts the clothes on men. Thus, this making of the clothes and putting on the clothes is not done by men on their own. We can see this occurence of the word ketoneth (the garment) throughout the Bible is reserved only for the “garments” that God made for Adam and Eve and also for a favorite character in the Bible, Joseph. Joseph is famous for his clothes. His father loved him so much that he clothed him with a “varicolored tunic” (Gen 37:3). There are actually three places in the Bible where ketoneth appears. First, there is Adam’s “garment.” Secondly, Joseph’s “tunic.” Lastly and most importantly, this word ketoneth, or “tunic,” was used for the priest (Exod 28:40).
Priestly Garments in the Temple
As a priest, we have to wear this tunic which is a white garment that covers the body completely accompanied by a sash and cap (turban) (Exod 28:39). Spiritually speaking, this white tunic with a sash around us and the cap is the uniform for the priest to wear in the temple. Adam and Eve tried covering their loins but God who is wonderful made ketoneth for Adam and Eve which covered them completely. Therefore, the priestly garment the “tunic” also covers from the neck all the way down to the feet and all the way down to our wrist; this is ketoneth. Secondly, clothing that God provided for the priest to cover their shame or “bare flesh” was the linen breeches (Exod 28:42). The “breeches” in the original Hebrew Language is miknas. The one thing that is very important about the ketoneth, and the miknas, is to cover the shame of man’s sin. Hence, when we go into the temple to minister to God, we must put on our priestly garments so we will not die (Exod 28:43). Likewise, in the end-time, Jesus says you must cover your shame by getting yourself this white garment (Rev 3:18). Both the tunic and the linen breeches are made with fine twisted linen (Exod 28:39; 39:28). Spiritually, the fine linen is the “righteous acts of the saints” (Rev 19:8). We often say that we did something right. However, the Bible declares that all of “our righteousness” are filthy, for none of us wear a clean white robe (Isa 64:6). This is why in the end-time Jesus says, “You must buy from Me a white garment of fine linen,” which means the “righteous acts” of the saints. The Bible declares righteousness can only come from our Lord and Savior Jesus Christ, for He alone is our righteousness already (1 Cor 1:30). Therefore, we must put on Jesus Christ for He is our righteousness and covering. As priests, we don’t make our own garments, but somebody makes it for us and puts it on us (Exod 28:40-42). This is exactly what Jesus Christ did for us.
The Priestly Garments in the New Generation
There’s a priestly garment for the New Priest in the New Generation. When we reflect back on the garments of skin that God made for Adam and Eve in the Garden of Eden, God had to kill an animal. That means a lot of blood was shed and that animal had to be stripped of its skin and that skin was put on the first fallen man Adam. This foreshadows exactly what will happen to Jesus Christ. Jesus was stripped three times to give us the “garment of righteousness.” First, Jesus was stripped of His own garment and they put on Him a scarlet robe (Matt 27:28-29). Secondly, He was stripped of the scarlet robe and they put His own garments back on and led Him off to be crucified (Matt 27:31). Thirdly, after they crucified the Lord, they stripped Him of His garments again and divided them up amongst themselves by casting lots (Matt 27:35). The outer garments of Jesus were divided up into four parts; however, the inner garment of Jesus, the “tunic” seamless woven in one piece, was not torn (John 19:23-24). This inner “tunic” of Jesus is exactly what the ketoneth looked like; a seamless woven in one piece. This “tunic” stayed as one piece which is a fulfillment of the Old Testament (Psa 22:18). As a result, all of us who have been baptized into Christ have been already clothed with Christ (Gal 3:27). Jesus who was stripped three times and suffered paid for our sins so that we can put on fine linen, bright and clean.
Conclusion: Part of the training to become a good priest is through hardships which is a part of God’s good plan. We have to be more diligent in studying the Word of God so that we can truly understand the depths of God (John 6:63). As we study the Word of God, we are receiving the Holy Spirit of God, for no one has understood the depths of God except the Spirit that is in Him (1 Cor 2:10). As a conclusion, we will be called the priests of the Lord and ministers of God (Isa 61:6). We are a chosen race, a royal priesthood, a holy nation, a people for God’s own possession in proclaiming the Word of God to all nations (1 Pet 2:9). We are all priests, so let us prepare to go into the true temple of God.