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Tuck in Your Shirt

I spent a decade of my life teaching the Bible at a large Christian Academy. On chapel days boys were required to wear a dress shirt and tie while girls had to wear a dress or skirt. Just before this worship service, teachers were expected to do a quick check for any dress code violations. Homeroom teachers were encouraged to remind boys to tuck in their shirt prior to walking over to the sanctuary or else face the risk of receiving a demerit.

We have renounced disgraceful ways (secret thoughts, feelings, desires and underhandedness, the methods and arts that men hide through shame); we refuse to deal craftily (to practice trickery and cunning) or to adulterate or handle dishonestly the Word of God, but we state the truth openly (clearly and candidly). And so we commend ourselves in the sight and presence of God to every man’s conscience, 2 Corinthians 4:2.

The apostle Paul introduced the concept of the belt of truth in the first century. In a letter to the Church at Ephesus, Paul urges readers to fastened the belt of truth, Ephesians 6:14. As a Roman Soldier prepared for battle, securing this belt was crucial for maximizing their mobility so they do they won’t get caught on anything. Yet, when you tell a teenage boy tuck in your shirt, most don’t know why it’s necessary or simply don’t care.

You are of your father, the devil, and it is your will to practice the lusts and gratify the desires [which are characteristic] of your father. He was a murderer from the beginning and does not stand in the truth, because there is no truth in him. When he speaks a falsehood, he speaks what is natural to him, for he is a liar [himself] and the father of lies and of all that is false, John 8:44.

Paul equates this belt with truth. When individuals allow exaggerations, half-truths, lies and ungodly beliefs to enter their mind, gray areas begin to develop and expand. The Bible is designed to bring clarity and light to confusing or difficult concepts to grasp. However, when Christians go days, weeks and months without opening this book, rules like tuck in your shirt are quickly dismissed. If anyone becomes disconnected from God’s Word, John 15:1-5, you will be susceptible to the father of lies who can deceive you from what is true. May God’s Word open your eyes to help to see the big picture for tucking in your shirt.

by Jay Mankus

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