It will also help to keep excess weight off and produce a more attractive physique. Another key factor of womanly beauty is looking feminine. A woman should look like a woman, not a man. Most women enjoy choosing different hair styles and fixing their hair. A physically attractive woman is also one who dresses modestly. Our society teaches women to flaunt their physical attributes by displaying scantily clad women on billboards, magazines and most other media outlets. Many women feel they must also dress this way to be considered attractive.
This is not true. A fully clothed woman dressed in a modest, feminine way is very attractive. She is not only attractive, she gains honor and respect from those who see her. A beautiful woman is not only admired for her physical appearance; she is admired for her inner qualities as well. There are many inner qualities that make a woman beautiful, and to cover all of them would require a separate article.
A woman should be kind—she should be gracious. Proverbs Proverbs A gracious woman retains honor: and strong men retain riches. When you think of the women that you hold in high regard, they usually are ladies who are kind, gentle, thoughtful, unselfish, etc. They are the women that we look up to and remember. In Proverbs Proverbs She opens her mouth with wisdom; and in her tongue is the law of kindness.
Are you ready to hear what men hope to find in a woman they are dating for the first time? Men like women who are nice. Men are suckers for kindness and consideration. We love women who are affable, flexible, easygoing. A woman should also have good judgment.
If a woman is physically attractive, but lacks discretion, it takes away from her beauty and value. Good judgment is needed in many areas of life such as moral issues, money matters, choices, decisions, dealing with others, work, etc. A woman should continue to grow and better her inner self. Proverbs 31 describes a woman who is competent and capable of doing many different things. A woman who continues to grow while developing her talents and abilities is a woman of value. She is one who is able to contribute to others through these abilities, and she will be of use to her family, Church, community, etc.
A truly beautiful woman is not only attractive on the outside and inside, she is also attractive to God. How a woman looks to God is more important than any other quality she possesses because one day her outer beauty will fade and her inner beauty will cease, but the beauty that God sees in her will be important when she stands before Him. God values a quiet spirit in a woman. As 1 Peter 1 Peter 3 Whose adorning let it not be that outward adorning of plaiting the hair, and of wearing of gold, or of putting on of apparel; 4 But let it be the hidden man of the heart, in that which is not corruptible, even the ornament of a meek and quiet spirit, which is in the sight of God of great price.
No, this is saying that a woman should not have an argumentative, contentious spirit. She should not be someone who is quick to argue and demand her way. She should be peaceable to others and respectful to her husband. There is a certain attitude among some women that has its roots in the feminist movement and is still prevalent among certain segments of society. This attitude is a deep anger toward men. Contrast this attitude to the gentle and quiet spirit that God values in women.
HIS word through Brother Paul in his letter to the Romans 14 tells us that we can indeed be an agent to cause someone to stumble. It is true that each person must submit to a renewing of their mind and seek pure thoughts. However, it is ludicrous to assume that purveyors and disseminators of visual opportunities have zero responsibility. Would we take recovering alcoholics to a wine tasting? Would we put a sex offender in charge of a daycare? Does their dress or lack thereof entice others to sin?
According to God the answer to that is a resounding YES. Product marketing companies know this full well. This author has ignored and spoken against the very thing marketeers have known for a very long time. Sex-y sells! If I seduce someone, I am guilty of being a tempter. I am not guilty for their lust. Each is guilty of his own sin.
Even your quotation of Luke shows this. The tempter is guilty, to be sure. But he is guilty of tempting. The one tempted is guilty of the sin to which he was tempted. That said, I stand by the title. You might disagree with that meaning, but it does, in fact, exist. Both parties—the tempter and the tempted—are guilty, but they are guilty of distinct yet very related sins. Certainly the road makes it easier to get there, just as temptation makes it easier to sin. But the road is only guilty of being a road.
What he was saying was that we should focus on inner beauty than on outter beauty. The Bible repeatedly tails of people like Esther and Sarah who both are doing themselves and gold bracelets nose rings and earrings and even two treatments to prepare their beauty for the rule over Persia and those treatments included mascara and makeup. So to cherry-pick Bible verses is incorrect as you have to look at the book as a whole. This is a very good awesome passage here : Modest is hottest they say unaware that in their own hearts they are still enslaved to a pre occupation with their physical image ,still defining their worth by their outward adornment.
These 39 words prophetic for the scars of Jesus Christ. Terrill TC. Instead, make up your mind not to put any stumbling block or obstacle in the way of a brother or sister. Women ARE responsible for the way men are attracted to our bodies if we are wearing tight fitting clothes, showing skin, and adorning ourselves in a way that draws people in. If we do our job and follow what the scriptures say, we will make it easier for men to keep their thoughts and actions pure.
We are not able to do whatever we want. We are all responsible for each other. The body of YaHUshua is divided because nobody cares for one another the way that he calls us to. Women should not be walking alone at 2a. If we want to be treated as ladies, then we need to act, dress, talk, and treat ourselves as daughters of the king. The modern woman is loud, brash, immodest, a social butterfly, and does not care. Modern women act as harlots and prostitutes, but expect be treated as a princess.
If we want to see a change, lets be the change. Before I started covering all my body, except my face, hands and feet, in public, I would like to look at the old paintings of women wear veils over their heads and long, loose dresses.
There certainly is enough fabric in the world for me to cover more. For thirty years now I have covered myself in long dresses, with a head covering. I have worked, In Philadelphia, been on stage singing in a modest way, and have even had four children in hospitals staying covered mostly. It makes a giant difference. So although I do believe that a man raping her is a sin on his part, she did a lot of sins also, in the story presented. Wait, just to be sure there is nothing wrong with drinking, its a sin when the person gets drunk Ephesians And do not get drunk with wine, for that is debauchery, but be filled with the Spirit, Galatians Envy, drunkenness, orgies, and things like these.
I warn you, as I warned you before, that those who do such things will not inherit the kingdom of God. But she that live in pleasure is dead while she lives. And these things give in charge , that they may be blameless. I will therefore that the younger women marry , bear children , guide the house , give none occasion to the adversary to speak reproachfully.
For some are already turned aside after Satan. What is a good fruit? Is how someone dress only? For this cause ought the woman to have power on her head because of the angels. What has the early church done in this area? What were the standards until a few years ago? God created Eve to attract Adam. Guess how that works. The bible does not teach that drinking is a sin, it says being drunk is a sin. Well done! God bless! Men wore robes back then.. The actual clothing we wear changes from generation to generation and should be considerably less of a concern.
Did he drink fermented wine at the Last Supper? Was there a way to preserve grape juice Jesus day? What type of wine will we drink when we drink it together with him in his kingdom? Alcohol kills cells. Any discussion of 1 Timothy 2: needs to be closely compared to 1 Peter 3: , which is very similar in message. In regards to Adam and Eve, they felt a sense of shame about their own bodies but the shame did not come from God.
At the time of the Fall, the only two human beings on the face of the earth were Adam and Eve and they had seen other naked for possibly a very long time and even been intimate with each other after the Fall. Were they trying to hide their bodies from each other? There were no other people on earth at that time. Many Bible translations have read that into the text because they have not exhaustively studied the original Greek. Furthermore, there was no article of clothing in the ancient Greek or Roman world that was named Katastole or could be identified as Katastole. I agree about your statement of 1 Peter 3.
Deserves an article all of its own because it is another rich text. And yes, it relates very closely to this text. I agree that the shame Adam and Eve felt was something internally motivated. No disagreement there. As you said, they were married and the only two people in existence, so seeing each other nude was not a problem, but the new presence of sin signaled something in them that there was a danger in being exposed. The shame seems to be something more related to their sin, not just their nudity, per se Genesis Not sure how much is in the Genesis text we can glean.
My friend Bobby Scott wrote an interesting piece about nudity and the fall. You might like it. I never said that katastole was a specific piece of apparel. As far as I have studied, you are right: there is no item of apparel that is called katastole. I said the term translated apparel is probably translated too narrowly.
From what I can tell, the term katastole has a couple nuanced meanings. First it means something put in order or arranged, in the sense of being equipped, clothed, or dressed the Greek playwright Aristophanes, for instance, used it this way. We also agree that Paul is not prescribing a kind of clothing.
He is denouncing certain styles, but not prescribing anything specific. Actually Deuteronomy is taken out of context today to apply to a standard to fit a standard that many churches have set. I am a woman that wear nothing but skirts and dresses adn I use to use that scripture in Deuteronomy to justify not wearing pants because that is what I was taught. However it is totally taken out of context. This was talking about cross dressing. Homosexuality is not modern and it prevailed in bible times even much more than we know.
God is not the author of confusion adn this scripture cannot be used for something that did not apply then. God was dealing with cross dressing, a woman wearing a mans clothing and vice versa. Both men and woman condoned in homosexuality among the other nations and of course they crossed dressed as they do today, to propose themselves as something they are not, deceiving the other party. I do not wear dresses and skirts based on Deuteronomy but I wear it because i believe it to be appropriate and it is what I consider modest. God is not complicated as many people make him and try to use one scripture to build a doctrine.
Most do not know or understand biblical history, its better to make sure we study the scripture to show ourselves approved and with all your getting get understanding so we can RIGHTLY divide the word of truth. He said to dress modestly, just as Sarah and the others woman. Some things were custom and cultural. Why do we do what we do. Love your neighbor as yourself. I agree with this article and it is definitely a guide to consider what you wear and why you wear it and how you present yourself.
It is not just outward but an inward thing. Thanks for the good dialogue Luke — I appreciate opinions like yourst because they are well-thought out. While I agree with some of his secondary points about the nature of deception and how it marred the image of God in people, I have to respectfully but unequivocally disagree with his basic premise regarding the Fall and nudity — namely, that through Eve being deceived and Adam going along with it, that Eve used her nakedness and sensualistic whiles to forever corrupt the purity of Adam.
I thought that this type of regressive theology passed away with certain vestiges of old line Catholicism. In all due respect to your friend Luke, again I have to say Wow! I mean no disrespect to Bobby. He obviously has taken some time to think deeply about this issue.
The issue of their nudity and their hastily acquired fig leafs which quickly burned away in the noonday sun was a side issue. God knew that they need better clothes to protect their bodies from the elements once they were out of the protective realm of Eden. In fact, there are hoardes of so-called Christian modesty proponents who have made it their sole focus.
I would submit to you, that in most Christian forum discussions about 1 Timothy 2: and modesty, there are no raging debates about braided hair, gold, pearls or costly attire. It is entirely about midriffs, cleavage and skin exposure and what it is perceived to communicate.
2. Guarded Tongues - verse 3 “not slanderers”
My seventeen year old Paul, whom I have carefully trained in the ways of inner sexual purity — through the Holy Spirit, not the Law — recently went to his church summer camp and had a great time with the girls and guys there. In particular, most of these well meaning guidelines were geared towards how the girls should cover up. Wear t-shirts under their one piece bathing suits and not wear short shorts which exposed their thighs or blouses which exposed their breasts or belly buttons.
The admonitions were also slightly given to the young men as they were counseled to not wear pants that hung down too low — but that was it. The guys? What happened to the modesty standards? If the roles were reversed and it was the girls dressed like this, they would have been reprimanded by youth leaders. Question: were the girls not potentially aroused by the sight of guys without shirts and skimpy bottoms — essentially wear the modern day equivalent of loin cloths.
And I would feel the same if the girls were dressed exactly the same as the boys. It seems you keep running into arguments elsewhere not in my article that say that katastole is an actual item or type of clothing. We both agree: that is not what this word is. I agree there are plenty of discussions in Christian communities about the specifics of modesty, as far as clothing or a lack of clothing is concerned.
I do not think such discussions are out of place if they are talked about in the light of this text, and other relevant texts, that speak of modesty as an matter of the heart. There is nothing wrong with talking specifics of clothing after all, the apostle Paul did when trying to bring some kind of modern application to how heart-modesty is lived out in our interactions and wardrobe choices.
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I agree with you that this should apply to men as well as women. As far as this text is concerned, modesty was something Paul was addressing to Christians women, but there are plenty of principles to be applied here for men as well. I do think modesty is going to be a contextual matter. From one culture to another, from one era to another, and from one gender to another, modesty is going to take different shapes based on the cultural cues certain kinds of clothing provoke.
For the people in Ephesus, braided hair invoked a certain kind of cultural response. For us, not so much. Christianity can pride itself in being trans-cultural. We simply preach on the heart of modesty, watch God change hearts, and try to offer the best discerning guidelines we can to help people make modest clothing choices based on the times in which we live.
What a great article! Almost every single JMJ hymn video, the mobflash videos had girls singing and dancing in tights or hot pants. Intentionally inducing people in sin, is a sin. In the CCC the virtue of modesty is linked to the virtue of charity precisely because charity has us think of the spiritual and general welfare of others. Either way, thank you for this inspiring post, it got me motivated to write once again on the subject for our Romanian chastity site!
Hi Julia. For clarification, I mean that if someone lusts after you, you are not thereby guilty of lusting. If you did something to intentionally provoke that lust, then you are guilty of seduction, not lust. You are accountable for your own. A man is responsible to guard his eyes no matter how women around him dress. The tragedy of the fall was not that they viewed themselves as merely being naked — that was a symptom like the feelings of fear that they now felt was a symptom. He is begging the question: Basing an assumption that is in as much need of proof or demonstration as the conclusion itself.
I largely agree with your interpretation of the word as an attitude. You know what?
They are attempting to covet sexual attraction which does not rightfully belong to them. Coveting is the key for both the seducer and the seduced. My questions to you were:. Were the Christian boys that I mentioned in my story including my son dressed immodestly?
Would that be immodest? Immodesty as a principle transcends how any one person does or does not lust after you. If a boy was dressed in swim trunks with the intention to seduce a girl, it would be immodest because his attitude would be in the wrong place, regardless of if he actually succeeds in titillating anyone. If you believe swim trunks send a cultural message of looseness or a provocative demeanor, or if you believe it is perceived by girls that way, or if you believe that girls if they were honest with themselves find men in trunks to be lust provoking, then I would say yes: they are immodest.
But I do believe that many Christians think modesty applies to guys. If a guy dressed opulently, in manner that was obvious he was only trying to show extraordinary wealth, he would be labeled as immodest. Still, you are right to want to raise the standard for men as well as women. I do think think modesty standards should be different for men and women, in terms of the specific clothing that is worn. A boy might be able to wear something that shows the top of his pectorals, but a girl might not.
Proverbs Hosea Ecclesiastes Daniel Matthew Deuteronomy Its a great artical! They want to turn heads and get a guy into bed with them. They can be as animistic to wards the man as the man is to the girl. Now this is only some cases but though girls are in most cases the victims so in some cases are the men. But girls still need to get it out of their heads that they can just dress scanty.
The few clubs i have been to its been the women not the men were going out of their way to be inappropriate and it discussed me greatly. No disagreement here. If someone embraces the very thing the apostle Paul is commending here, then she will do all she can to dress in a modest fashion out of love for God, love for her fellow men, and a hatred of sin. As a single female, I would like to confirm to you: yes, seeing an attractive man without his shirt can lead a woman to have impure thoughts.
I live very close to a university, so I often see students jogging. I know the claim that women are not as visually stimulated as men. This does not, however mean that we are visually stimulated on a very low level. I once had to intentionally look down in church, because the young worship leader was wearing a fitted polo shirt, and he was quite muscular. Just like men associate certain female characteristics as feminine and more sexually attractive, women see male chests and arms as strong, masculine and sexually attractive.
Another example, the other day, I heard someone talking about a man. Actually, she exclaimed it. So, I am glad to see that we are more in agreement than I thought! However, as far as a man not needing to wear a bra: this may be true. But it would still be helpful for him to wear a t-shirt, in order to cover himself up. The purpose of my comments to Ed are to refute the mistaken notion that just because modesty practically means different things to men and women, it does not mean that these practical differences are evidence of a double standard. Certainly there is a double standard when it comes to modesty in many social circles, but the fact that men and women naturally wear different clothing because their bodies are different is not a manifestation of that double standard.
As you pointed out, men need to be aware that what they wear can be titillating to a woman. Luke, I was very clear in my statements about the word Katastole: it can be tangentially applied to clothing and outward adornement if you want to push the definition really, really hard. However, the primary thrust of the word is not about any type of clothing but inward attitudes of the heart.
But is that where most of Christendom is at on this issue? You know, several years ago, I once heard of a radical pro-abortion, lesbian activist at a National Organization for Women rally who was wearing earrings made out of aborted baby parts as a protest statement.
Of course, that is incredibly sick but wearing those earrings was definitely a reflection of her inward heart and attitudes! But a girl simply choosing to wear a halter top at the beach is being inappropriate? Does that fly with evangelical Christian world at large? What about men who suffer with the condition gynecomastia enlarged breast tissue in men — should they wear bras simply because they have enlarged female-like breasts? Or should they too decide whether they should wear a bra on the basis of being inappropriate versus not being inappropriate?
The only reason that you would have more stringent standards for a woman versus a man is because you are culturally perceiving the female body pornographically. Paul is using the term for clothing the same way Aristophanes a Greek playwright did. To answer your bra question: No. That does not represent mainstream evangelical thought nor my own. My point in that statement was to say that men and women might have different modesty standards, and that will be due, in part, to the differences in their anatomy.
I actually think the male body can be pornographic, too. If, for instances, we are raised in a culture where showing off cleavage is a sexual cue, then I would advise women to consider that in their personal modesty standards. Modesty is primarily about our motivations. Find out what cultural cues are reflected in the kinds of clothing men wear, whether certain kinds of clothing communicate decadence or sexual prowess, and then create some guidelines you think are most appropriate for men.
I think that would be a very constructive way of going about this. After all, Paul was doing everything in his power to counteract the legalistic Judaizing message of those trying to take Gentile believers in Christ back under the law the 10 Commandments, circumcision, dietary rules, sacrifices for blood atonement, commands about clothing, etc.
He was preaching radical grace which is the truth that Gentile believers do not live and have never lived under the shadow of the Law but in the newness of the Spirit the Law was for the Jews only and only for a set period of time in their history. Paul was advocating that we live in accordance with our Christ-given new birth identity. Our attention is to be focused on the loveliness of our Lord Jesus — not externals. The Apostle was arguing for a heart check.
He was arguing for a focus check. He was not ordering the Corinthians to conform to certain fashion standards in accordance with the prevailing cultural standards of his day. To do so, would have weakened and cheapened the clear message of grace, truth and freedom in Christ that he was teaching. Yes, of course Paul was preaching a message of radical grace, but it was not a lawless message.
Seen in this light, a message about modesty is totally fitting. When a lost and dying world sees women and men not enslaved to a desire for opulence or sexual prowess but rather carrying themselves in decency and purity, this adorns the gospel of grace. When Christian women and men hate sin and love one another, they can show that by how they dress, dressing in a manner that does not seduce. It sounds like now you disagree with most of the points of my article.
It is notable that he completely omitted any reference to how women are supposed to dress. Luke, of course, the Apostle Paul was not preaching lawlessness. However, it was Paul himself that said that both sin and the Law was nailed to the cross.
As believers, we died to both sin and the Law including the so-called moral laws. We know love others and God out of the overflow in which God loved us first through the Resurrection of Christ. I maintain that he was not preaching anything even slightly smacking of prohibition but rather about our focus and identity in Christ. They were very strict and legalistic in their teachings about everything in the Bible nice people nonetheless. Anyways, the first time I came to their church, I was wearing a tie.
Unbeknowst to me was the fact that they interpreted 1 Peter 3: as meaning that women and even men are not to wear jewelry or clothing adornements such as ties. Once you go down the prohibition road, there is no end to it — because everybody has their opinion. The best thing that we can do is allow the Holy Spirit to permeate our hearts and follow his admonitions from within — not from without. That also includes the opinions of our brothers and sisters in Christ. Luke, I must still say, however, that your modesty standards for men vs.
It something looks or feels immodest to you, therefore it is to you. The real test of your open-mindedness on this subject is if you allow your brothers and sisters to wear what their own consciences dictate without you passing judgment or pronouncements with your own ideas. That includes your interpretations of 1 Timothy 2: I believe you are confusing being dead to the law as in the law of Moses with being dead to the law of Christ which, as Paul himself said, we are still very much in submission to.
Your experience with the Holiness church was unfortunate. Clearly, they were twisting a first century application of a timeless principle into a 20th century context. Never goes well when we do that. We clearly agree that modesty is a matter of the heart, that it applies to men and women, and that first and foremost people should be tenderized in their conscience over the matter. We seem to disagree that God gives believers specific commands today. In this sense, Paul was not being subjective but applying an objective principle through his discernment of what those items of clothing communicated to the people in Ephesus.
Applying this to today, I believe Christians should discern the cultural cues certain kinds of clothing invoke and make wise choices, born out of heart-motivated modesty. I cannot apologize for these people. Nor can I defend them. Luke, thanks for the conversation stream. On the subject of Christians not unbelievers being dead to the law and sin, I would highly urge you to read at least one or more books by Pastor Dr.
Andrew Farley. His first book is The Naked Gospel. All three are phenomenal. With the general thrust of Covenant Eyes, I am concerned that you are trying to fight a battle with no ending. You can try to block out all of it or what you think it is. However, in the final analysis, it will still be there — filter or no filter. If you have a top of the line, steel-reinforced ladder, but lean it up against the the wrong house the wrong goal , then the net outcome is that you will be leaned against the wrong house — no matter how good your ladder is.
That is nature of sin, however. It will continue until the end of the age. This makes the battle more than worth it. Luke, thank you for you work and about caring about how these issues affect the lives of believers. And they do indeed, though not always for the reasons that we have traditionally thought. I would submit to you one more resource for your perusal.
Disclaimer: I am in no way connected with this website — I accidentally stumbled on it. But it has been absolutely transformative in my life and the life of my teenage son as I help train him in the path to purity. What a great and beautiful message. I will not use such beauty as an opportunity for exploitation and indecency.
Reading those words made me feel differently about my nude body and not focus on its imperfections for a bit. I wrote it on a note card and am placing it on my mirror for continual reassurance that my form is a thing of divine beauty. I really appreciate this wonderful article about biblical modesty. There is one area, medical modesty that many Christians and non-Christians do not really think about. It bothers me about how many Christians preach that you should dress modestly, but that your modesty does not matter in medical settings. It is odd that many Christians preach that young women should dress modestly to help men to stay pure, but they see nothing with male gynecologists.
This is a huge cultural blind spot.
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I do not believe in situational ethics. If nudity is always wrong with the opposite sex except for your spouse after puberty, I believe it is wrong in all settings including medical. Many Christians have fallen to the cultural blind spot that opposite sex intimate medical care is okay. The abortion issue reminds me so much of opposite sex intimate medical care. Abortion was not performed in the bible, but infanticide was.
There are plenty of bible verses that indicate that life begins at conception and that an unborn baby is human. Think about it this way: it is wrong for a man to shoot a pregnant woman in the stomach and kill her unborn baby, but it is okay for a doctor to kill an unborn baby through abortion in the name of medicine according to the pro-choice movement. Both the man and the doctor are equally guilty of murder. It is ridiculous because God has the same standards for everyone including medical professionals. It is very easy for your wishes for modesty or same gender intimate medical care to be violated and this is the very reason I started Medical Patient Modesty.
Loved your article Luke : Just wish there were specifics for things like bathing suits! I posted one such picture and received an email from a brother in the Lord appalled that I would post bikini pics. And honestly I am always hoping people will think I look nice in the clothes I wear.
Not lust after me but I love compliments for sure. I just wish the Bible was as specific about dress as it was about the tabernacle. Give me a rigid set of definitions! Am I missing the point? It is possible to wear a bikini and be modest if the purpose is not to cause lust? Are there some clothes that are just on the no-no list? Thank you, doing research and seeking a sincere answer. My heart just wants to please God. God was wise to write the Bible in such a way that it can fit into any culture, language, and ethnic group.
Modesty, like it or not, will mean different things to different people. Using wisdom, we need to look at similar situations today. I see similar situations on a website that my wife manages for breastfeeding moms. Often pictures are needed to show positions and techniques. Should a man find this site, he likely would get an eye full of flesh, which I imagine could cause some to stumble.
We reconciled this issue knowing that the site clearly advertises itself as a breastfeeding website, trusting that men who are attempting to guard their eyes will probably steer clear, and men who are looking to lust will do what they want to do anyway. Men who want to see photos of only men can do that, and women can see photos of only women: they choose what images they want to see. That would at least put up a barrier for those who are trying to be pure.
Perhaps instead of bikinis you could show the sections of the body you most want to feature, like the mid-section, rather than showing breasts and all. That may not be feasible, but perhaps it will help the situation some. This ia an enlightening piece, Luke. I am a Muslim lady and I cover up but this is the first time I am stumbling upon anything Christian that talks about modesty. I had always thought only Islam emphasizes it. I am a Nigerian and I have a lot of christian friends and family but they all leave there are no rules binding them.
I think more Christains need to be Enlightened abiut this so the world can be a better place and they can stop seeing muslims ladies that cover up as freaks. Many Christian communities throughout the world have their own modesty standards, and I believe many Christians in general place a premium on modesty. There are, of course, exceptions.
I will say, however, that modesty standards in Christian churches tend to be based other cultural factors: so what is modest for a Christian in Nigeria might look different from what is modest for a Christian in America or the UK. As my article states, there are sexual cues that get culturally attached to clothing styles in different cultures.
I also alluded to the idea of male modesty in the article, and you are right, it is an increasing concern. I will say, historically speaking, it is fairly new discussion in the world. Today, however, there is a need to address this because we see men sexualized in media right alongside women.
The Scripture 1 Timothy is not about lust or temptation at all. Paul was not uneducated, if he wanted to speak on lust, he would have. He spoke on modesty. Meaning, he wishes for them to dress in that manner. NOT the spirit of others. Instead he mentioned it specifically to the Ephesians, why? Because it was a problem amongst the women specifically in Ephesus. Modestly is still a problem for some today, however, the notion of how Christian women, or Christian men for that matter, should dress is not defined by this Scripture alone. As stated in the article, modesty is defined by our behavior, not merely our attire.
Wearing something that shows off your body, male or female, is not being insensitive to sin. If being sensitive to sin was the point of modesty, beautiful individuals would have been commanded to stay indoors. Their mere faces would have been an insensitivity to sin. He is talking about modesty. However, given the specific fashion options he mentions, associated with opulence and sexual prowess, it seems to be clearly one of the reasons why he is mentioning modesty.
Obviously, Paul is giving his opinion, but the question for the careful interpreter is whether he is knowingly stating something that is merely his opinion or something he believes God thinks as well.
Titus 2 - Godly Training for Women
Look at the connecting phrases. When he says he desires men in every place to pray v. Flowing from this premise, he tells all men to pray v. I want, I will for both actions: men praying and women dressing modestly. It is a superficial logic to say that if Paul thought modesty was an issue everywhere he would have mentioned it everywhere. Paul only mentions the Lord Supper in one letter. Paul only mentions the qualifications for elders in two letters. Does that mean none of the other churches should follow similar qualifications? I agree with you that modesty is not defined by this Scripture alone, and I say as much in my article.
If a shirtless male invokes a cultural image of sexual prowess and seduction, then I would say the man should probably be more discrete about where he takes his shirt off. God related shame to the thighs and buttocks being exposed Isaiah I think there are other references to exposed buttocks and thighs as relates to shame.
I Corinthians speaks of the Body but there is an interesting reference to modesty as refers to clothing: cover unpresentable parts ; some say private parts; bestow clothing peritithemen Greek Modesty is an issue of the heart AND body. I have observed that we have abandoned physiological principles put in place by God. It is very weak of us to make constant references to the state of our heart when we wear clothing that is form fitting or just clothing bare necessities. I firmly acknowledge those who know they are not trying to be seductive but believe there is ignorance and a lack of a reality check when we go forward with bare minimum and skin tight clothing; this is not a whole recognition of reality.
Moments of quiet. After having been at a legalistic college and fed up with that kind of approach, I asked God to always let me see his heart when I read the Bible. That means his motives and his long term plan as well as his short term plan. List checking is dangerous. His heart is clear in the Bible many times over. How he Longed. He has desires.
Hopes for us. Clothing is actually in there if we can discern and leave behind the legalistic but see the heart of God. After 25 years I was able to weed out the lists and verses that were misapplied and see that the amount of clothing is a part of modesty undoubtedly. It is NOT just about what we wear and where we wear it though that is a part of it. So we cannot say that it would be inappropriate to wear thus and such to church but it is okay to wear it by a body of water.
There are some bottom line standards that need addressed. Logically, it does not. Regarding lust, I heard it best like this: a man can lust after a woman even if she is wearing a burlap sack. That is true. But what do we do? Since there is not a chapter on the definition of clothing it is our duty to then search for the heart of God in the matter without being legalistic, reductionistic or lacking care.
He is amazingly silent on the issue as far as lists go but his thoughts can be seen if we look with the goal of hearing Him just as we learn of someone else we love from little tidbits here and there. If we even take the thought in I Corinthians , we can give great respect to our body. That is the emphasis: our body is deserving of great honor.
I am a great proponent of breastfeeding. It is my belief that a breast giving nourishment is still a breast and the sexuality of a breast and the function of a breast ARE NOT mutually exclusive. This necessarily excludes posting photos. I still remember that as a bold move of God in my life since that kindness was unusual, but an answer from God. Learning can be accomplished without turning to posted actual photos. Present the challenge to God and see the amazing ideas that will come about. Is there an easy way to do that? Is it posted to the Covenant Eyes Facebook page?
Could I have your permission to print this? Thank you. This is a very good topic that should be addressed. I have always felt like it was wrong, and in fact done some research having been negatively affected emotionally when my wife was pregnant and had chosen a male doctor for the initial exam. I did not expect to feel the way I did, however the knowledge of another man having both seen and touched my wife in such an intimate fashion disturbed me to the point of depression. But anyway, after hitting a few forums looking for some like-minded advice on how to deal with it, I ran across either people that were either to one extreme or another, mostly being chided and belittled for expecting modest standards from the medical community.
I believe they were correct in their thinking, comparing old paintings depicting women fully clad in long dresses to our modern swimsuit magazines and far worse. Hi, I really enjoyed your article. I will be talking with my daughters about intention as I think it helps with their development as a person apart from male approval.
I have a different view of modesty. I think that if you want to show off your body, go for it. Thank you for this article. I found it very interesting, and all the subsequent comments and replies too. However I do wonder why it seems that you have applied your modesty principles to women? Modesty is truly something we are all called to.
I mention that in the article.