Clothes have symbolically played a role in humanity. Since the story of Eden when Adam and Eve realized they were naked and felt ashamed, so they created clothes, clothes have meant more to us then we have realized. For some it's a status symbol, the nicer the clothes the high status you attain. Others it is simply something you need and doesn't have to be fancy.
Clothes also gives us something to hide behind. Those that are insecure about their bodies tend to wear clothes that cover up as much skin as possible. When we are in a relationship with someone the ultimate show of intimacy is losing the clothes, so that you know a person for who they are fully.
Of course the sermon series we are currently on is using clothes as a jumping off point to talk about something more intangible, our spirit, heart, and mind. In ways we have covered ourselves up in many different ways that keeps us from real relationship with others and God. We are to be a new creation through Christ, which means we must shed our "grave clothes" and put on the clothing of Christ.
Life Group Discussion Questions:
1. Are there any other metaphors having to do with clothing that you can think of?
2. What was interesting to you about Russ' use of the Lazarus story on Easter, instead of the Resurrection story of Christ?
3. What are some grave clothes you need to shake off in order to wear a new wardrobe?
4. How do you put on the new self? For example, if you want to put on the clothes of kindness how would you begin to do that?
5. In what ways can you encourage one another to continue to put the clothing of Christ on and shed the old clothing?