The word “veil” in Hebrew is mas-veh’. It simply means covering. The first human clothes were some “fig leaves”. Adam and Eve must have hastily picked these leaves because they are larger than most. However, this scant clothing could never take away their shame of falling in rebellion from the glory of God. God knew that fig leaf clothing certainly wouldn’t last very long and, as always, He had a higher plan. So the Lord slew an animal and the skin was used to cover our ancestors. This is not only the first fur coat, it is also the first time we see shed blood used to cover sins.
So we know that clothing is indeed a covering. Before the fall Adam and Eve had no consciousness of the fear of the Lord, they just enjoyed His company daily. With the fear of the Lord comes a desire to be clothed. It is not an oversimplification to say that those who see no need to be clothed do not have the fear of the Lord. Immodest apparel prevails in the world today, and the fear of the Lord is a treasure the unredeemed can’t comprehend.
Islam has taken this concept of covering to an exaggerated extreme with the burqa where only narrow slits for a woman’s eyes are visible. France has outlawed the wearing of this veil to no avail. Whenever man does what is right in his own eyes we will see extremes which God hates. Neither nudity or the burkah is sanctioned anywhere in the Bible. “But if a woman have long hair, it is a glory to her: for her hair is given her for a covering.” ( I Cor. 11:15) For a woman to allow her hair to grow naturally has always been a symbol of submission to authority. Even the angels take note when a woman consecrates herself in such a way.
If you are beginning to think this is a message on clothes you may be surprised, so read on. What we are examining today is the concept of covering.
Things that are holy need to be covered. When Moses was given the exact plans to build the Tabernacle in the wilderness there was to be a covering veil which would separate the inner court from the “Holy of holies”. The ark of the covenant was placed beyond the veil overshadowed by golden cherubim covering the mercy seat . Again we see the symbol of the wings of the carved cherubim facing one another and overshadowing or covering the ark. Whenever the children of Israel moved from place to place the tent tabernacle had to be pulled up by the stakes and the veil was used to cover the ark as they proceeded on their journey. Do you see the emphasis on covering that which is holy?
Prior to the birth of Christ there was a distance or separation between man and God. The high priest, Abraham, Moses, King David, the prophets etc. were given a special grace to enter into the shekinah glory of God’s presence on occasion, but the common folk were never allowed there. When Moses came down from Mt. Zion, after receiving the law from God, his face shone so much that he put a veil over his face. It is believed that he did this so the people would not see that the glory would eventually fade. (Exodus 34:35)
“Seeing then that we have such hope, we use great plainness of speech. And not as Moses which put a veil over his face, that the children of Israel could not steadfastly look to the end of that which is abolished: but their minds were blinded: for unto this day remaineth the same veil untaken away in the reading of the old testament; which veil is done away in Christ. But unto this day, when Moses is read, the veil is upon their heart.” (2 Corinthians 3:12-15)
Unbelief puts a veil over the mind. We could go further and say that a person is actually blind if they have not believed in Christ. No matter if people call darkness light and light darkness, the truth is that this entire world is presently shrouded in darkness. “For, behold, the darkness shall cover the earth, and gross darkness the people: but the Lord shall arise upon thee and His glory shall be seen upon thee.” (Isaiah 60:2) The good news is that our Lord Jesus Christ was stripped naked (no covering) on that cross and took all the sin and darkness of this world on his ravaged body. As our Lord Jesus Christ yielded up the ghost and said, “It is finished”, demons trembled, rocks exploded from the earthquake, great darkness settled in midday, and the veil of the temple was torn from top to bottom by the hand of God, thus signifying that the way into the “Holy of holies” was now available for all. It is impossible to be reconciled to God without going through Jesus Christ.
He said He was the “light of the world”. The darkness can never put out the light of the glorious gospel. The good news got better when Jesus left the tomb of darkness and death and was resurrected into the heavens. His Kingdom has never been of this world. We can receive His Kingdom when we are filled with the Holy Ghost of promise.
This is a message of great hope today because no matter how deep the darkness one is in, there is a light and a hope reaching out to you. It only takes a switch to turn on a light bulb, a match to light a candle, and it only takes faith as a grain of mustard seed to turn on the true Light that lightens every man. Even if you feel you are walking in darkness today there is hope for you. “Who is among you that feareth the Lord, that obeyeth the voice of his servant, that walketh in darkness and hath no light? Let him trust in the name of the Lord, and stay upon his God.” (Isaiah 50:10)
“And I will bring the blind by a way that they knew not; I will lead them in paths that they have not known: I will make darkness light before them, and crooked things straight. These things will I do unto them, and not forsake them.” (Isaiah 42:16)