There are references to clothing throughout Paul's letters, and the metaphor constitutes a significant aspect of his theology. The imagery appears several times in his letters: clothing with Christ (Gal 3:27; Rom 13:14), clothing with the new man (Col 3:9-10; Eph 4:22-24), and clothing with the resurrection body (1 Cor 15:49, 50-54; 2Cor 5:1-4).
In order to understand the background to this use of the clothing metaphor, Jung Hoon Kim examines similar imagery in the Old Testament, 1 and 2 Enoch, the Apocalypse of Moses, Philo, rabbinic literature, Joseph and Aseneth, the Hymn of the Pearl, and Apuleius's Metamorphoses. He also discusses the Roman custom of clothing and the baptismal praxis of the ancient church.
Kim concludes that Paul's metaphor suggests the life and glory of the image of God, which were lost by Adam, have been restored by baptism in Christ, and will go on to be consummated at the parousia.
About the Author
Jung Hoon Kim received his Ph.D. from the University of Glasgow and is currently working in the University of Cheonan, Korea.