Wearing camel's hair and also a leather belt had actually a particular spiritual meaning.

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When we first meet man the Baptist in the Gospels that Matthew and also Mark, that is an odd character. The Gospel authors go the end of their means to explain his unexplained clothing, in among the rarely occasions that they ever cite someone’s garments.

Now john wore a garment the camel’s hair, and also a animal leather girdle about his waist; and his food was locusts and also wild honey. (Matthew 3:4)

Besides reflecting John’s poverty, what go his clothes signify?

For a Jewish audience, this detail linked John the Baptist come a very significant prophet in the Old Testament. The prophet Elijah wore comparable clothing that set him apart from everyone else.

They reply him, “He wore a garment that haircloth, through a girdle of leather about his loins.” and he said, “It is Elijah the Tishbite.” (2 monarchs 1:8)

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Read more:How St. Man the Baptist to be the an initial hipster

In the publication of Malachi, it to be foretold that, “Behold, I will certainly send you Elijah the prophet before the great and devastating day of the lord comes. And he will turn the hearts of fathers to their children and the hearts of kids to their fathers, lest i come and smite the land through a curse” (Malachi 4:5).


Even Jesus make the connection, additional solidifying the role of john the Baptist as a prophet who would prepare the method for the Messiah, “Truly, i say come you, among those born of women there has actually risen no one better than john the Baptist … and also if you space willing to accept it, he is Elijah that is to come” (Matthew 11:11,14).

Additionally, Jesus contrasts the mission of man the Baptist through the “soft” garments of royalty.

As they walk away, Jesus started to speak come the crowds concerning John: “What walk you go out into the wilderness come behold? A reed shaken by the wind? Why then did you walk out? To watch a man clothed in soft raiment? Behold, those who wear soft raiment are in kings’ houses. Why climate did you walk out? To check out a prophet? Yes, ns tell you, and much more than a prophet.” (Matthew 11:7,9)

Last of every the coarse clothes of man the Baptist signify his mission come preach repentance. Sackcloth is a similar garment described in the Old Testament and also frequently was worm as soon as in mourning or in a public present of repentance for sin.

While his clothing options may it seems ~ odd come the modern reader, they do perfect sense to the 1st-century Jewish follower, that instantly know the significance of his garments.

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Read more:Was man the Baptist a member the the Essenes?


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