Message # 766
Garments We Wear: Kingdom Clothing
Now John [the Baptist] was clothed with camel’s hair and with a leather belt around his waist. Mark 1:6
Camel hair has long been a popular source of fiber when making Western clothing for men and women. The top layer of hair on the Asian Bactrian camel is rough and stiff; it is often used for the backing of carpets. It is the softer, under-layer of hair that is used for garments.
In the first century, it is possible that they did not separate the rough hair from the soft. John the Baptist might have chosen the rough hair anyway—an illustration of separating himself from the “softness” of this world and to stay focused on God’s Kingdom. John’s job was to be a herald, announcing the coming of the Kingdom of God and its Messiah, Jesus of Nazareth. He was committed to the Kingdom, paring his own life down to the bare necessities so as not to be encumbered by any worldly diversions. His focus was like that of Elijah who proceeded him—and who also wore a prophet’s “garment of hair” (2 Kings 1:7-8, ESV).
We don’t have to wear hairy garments to follow Jesus. But we should have a prophet’s focus, casting off anything that might encumber us (Hebrews 12:1).
I will place no value on anything I have or may possess, except in relation to the kingdom of Christ. David Livingstone