Perhaps you have heard the old song in the title of this article. Some of the lyrics of the song state:
If you’re blue and you don’t know
where to go to why don’t you go
where fashion sits
Puttin’ on the Ritz
Different types who wear a day
coat pants with stripes and cutaway
coat perfect fits
Puttin’ on the Ritz
Dressed up like a million-dollar trooper
Tryin’ hard to look like Gary Cooper (super duper)
Come let’s mix where Rockefellers
walk with sticks or um-ber-ellas
in their mitts
Puttin’ on the Ritz
The emphasis of this song is to have on the right clothes so that you can fit in with the right crowd. The crowd, in the song, is the high-fashion crowd. The clothes are high fashion clothes. The word “Ritz” symbolizes riches and high fashion. And when one wears such garments, the song states, one may chase away the blues.
The Bible speaks concerning wearing the right clothes and when we wear these clothes, we chase away the darkness. In Matthew 22:1-14 Jesus tells a parable of a wedding feast. In the parable, the king calls his servants to invite others to come to the wedding feast. But those who are invited do not come. The king then sends his servants into the highways and byways to invite others, both good and bad, to come to the wedding feast. When the feast was furnished with guests, the king comes in and finds one of the guests without a wedding garment. The one without the garment is bound hand and foot and cast into outer darkness. This individual did not have the right clothes and was summarily cast out.
In understanding this parable, we should note that Jesus said that the kingdom of heaven is likened unto this situation. Today there are many who need the gospel and Jesus commands his servants to go out into the highways and byways and invite all that are there both good and bad to come into the kingdom. This is the period of time in which we live right now. The day will come, however, when the King will return. And when He returns, He will judge. It is important that we be prepared for that day. How do we prepare? We must make sure that we are adorned with the appropriate wedding garments. Let’s notice a few things about doing just that, that is, “Puttin’ on the Ritz” of Christ.
Those who “put on the Ritz” don’t go out naked! They realize that they must put on their clothes. In Romans 13:14 we read, “But put ye on the Lord Jesus Christ, and make not provision for the flesh, to fulfil the lusts thereof.” To be separated from the world, we must put on the clothing which is Christ! Without Christ, we are naked. Without Christ we are old and decrepit. But with Christ we are robed in righteousness and our sins have been covered. Ephesians 4:24 says, “And that ye put on the new man, which after God is created in righteousness and true holiness.” Colossians 3:10 says, “And have put on the new man, which is renewed in knowledge after the image of him that created him.” The new man has been created in righteousness and true holiness. The new man has been renewed in knowledge after Christ’s image. The new man has been robed in Christ–has put on Christ!
Those who “put on the Ritz” don’t go out with the wrong clothing. They realize that to be recognized as having “put on the Ritz” they must be clothed with the right clothing. The Bible teaches that those who are saved will wear God’s garments–not man’s. In Isaiah 61:10, we read, “I will greatly rejoice in the LORD, my soul shall be joyful in my God; for he hath clothed me with the garments of salvation, he hath covered me with the robe of righteousness, as a bridegroom decketh himself with ornaments, and as a bride adorneth herself with her jewels.” In this prophecy of the Messiah and His people, we read that the people of God would be clothed with garments. These garments are described in this passage as garments of salvation, and robes of righteousness. These are the garments that God gives to His people. To wear some garment other than the one which God gives is to robe ourselves in a righteousness of our own and that won’t save (Romans 10:3). In order to remain at the wedding feast when the king comes, we must be wearing the garments He has given us.
Those who “put on the ritz” take care not to dirty up their garments so as to appear shoddy and shabby. The Bible teaches that after we have been clothed in the proper garments, we must keep them pure. We read in Revelation 3:4 “Thou hast a few names even in Sardis which have not defiled their garments; and they shall walk with me in white: for they are worthy.” This passage teaches there were some who had defiled their garments. This we ought not to do, but should keep our garments pure. Notice Revelation 16:15 “Behold, I come as a thief. Blessed is he that watcheth, and keepeth his garments, lest he walk naked, and they see his shame.” Failure to watch and keep our garments results in nakedness and one will not see heaven in such a spiritually clothed state.
The question that needs to be asked now is this: Have you put on the wedding garments? Are you robed in righteousness? Have you put on the new man? Have you been created in righteousness and true holiness? Are you renewed in knowledge after Christ’s image? Do you want to remain at the wedding feast? “But,” you say, “how can I know if I have put on the garments of Christ?” The scriptures give us the answer. Galatians 3:27 says, “For as many of you as have been baptized into Christ have put on Christ.” When we are baptized, we put on Christ. We robe ourselves in his righteousness which comes from understanding and obeying his word (Romans 1:16, 17). When we obey His word, we are assured that we have not substituted a righteousness of our own. We put on the new man by putting to death the old man of sin, burying that old man in a watery grave, and being raised up as a new man in Christ (Romans 6:3-11). Christian baptism is the point at which we bury the old man and make alive the new. It is the point at which we are robed in Christ’s righteousness through his word. It is the point at which we put on the wedding garments. Christian baptism is the point at which we put on Christ. If you believe that you put on Christ before baptism, then you put on the wrong garment. You need to take that one off and put the right one on. There is only one baptism (Ephesians 4:5). There is only one garment to wear for the wedding feast. Will you be wearing it when the King returns? Have you “Put on the Ritz” of Christ, today.