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We are living in a permissive society where people practice very few restraints. This is certainly evident in the types of clothes that are worn. It is amazing that some young people (and some that are not so young) think nothing of taking off half and sometimes more than half of their clothes thus exposing their bodies to the lustful stares of the public.
Wearing immodest apparel is a year round problem but it seems to increase as the weather gets warmer. Some seem to think that the standard for modesty is regulated by weather conditions. Many who would not think of undressing in the public eye at other times will go practically naked during the summer months in an effort to "beat the heat".
God's Word Is The Standard
God has been very clear in stating that the woman who is a Christian is to dress in "modest apparel". "In like manner also, that women adorn themselves in modest apparel, with shamefacedness, and sobriety; not with braided hair, or gold or pearls, or costly array; But (which becometh women professing godliness) with good works" (2 Timothy 2:9-10).
The word MODEST means orderly, well arranged, DECENT. This means that clothing is to be of such a nature that it will not cause lustful stares. Shorts, tight fitting clothing, short skirts, split clothing which exposes the thighs, majorette suits, cheer leader outfits, and see-through clothing certainly do not fit into the category of decent apparel.
The word SHAMEFACEDNESS is defined as a sense of shame. Someone once described it as the ability to blush. Some have obviously lost that ability or either have a very low threshold for blushing due to the fact that they continually wear indecent apparel.
SOBRIETY means soundness of mind, that habitual inner self-government, with its constant rein on all the passions and desires which would hinder temptation from arising. The one who is seeking to serve God will always choose that which is unquestionably modest so as not to cause any doubt.
CAUSING OTHERS TO LUST IS SIN!
Some have argued that people will have evil thoughts regardless of what you are wearing. That is true and Jesus has Jesus has condemns them in Matthew 5:28: "But I say unto you, that whosoever looketh on a woman to lust after her hath committed adultery with her already in his heart." However, the lady or man who dresses in such a manner as to excite lust is ALSO GUILTY!
David's sin with Bathsheba was partly the consequence of her own carelessness. "And it came to pass in an eveningtide, that David arose from off his bed, and walked upon the roof of the king's house: and from the roof he saw a woman washing herself; and the woman was very beautiful to look upon" (2 Samuel 11:2). Had Bathsheba been more careful that her nakedness could not have been seen, the lust that David had for her might have been prevented.
CHRISTIANS ARE NOT TO BE CONFORMED TO THE WORLD
Paul said, "And be not conformed to this world: but be ye transformed by the renewing of your mind, that ye may prove what is that good and acceptable and perfect will of God" (Romans 12:12). Satan wants every young person (older, too) to believe that they must conform to the world in their dress in order to be popular. THIS IS NOT TRUE! Some of the most popular and respected young people I've known refused to go along with immodest dress, even so far as participating in sports. One young man I know refused to wear shorts to play in the varsity basketball games. He was the only one on the floor with full length pants but it did not prevent him from being the team's highest scorer nor from receiving the praise and adoration of his peers. Certainly there were "smart"remarks from some team mates and from the crowd but this didn't stop him from doing what he knew was right. Oh! By the way...
WHAT ABOUT MEN?
I fear that not enough is said concerning modest, apparel for men. Yet the problem of indecency in dress is in no wise confined to the female. Men can and do dress in immodest apparel. Some don't like to admit it but the female can and does lust just as men do. Joseph was cast into prison because of the lust of Potiphar's wife. (Genesis 39: 7-23).
Some men wear trousers that are too tight and have been designed to call attention to certain parts of the body. Some don't even have hip pockets so that they can be even tighter. Some men have a common practice of going without a shirt in the summer as if the exposure of their nakedness did not matter.
WHAT CAN BE DONE?
The problem can best be taken care of in the home. Fathers, as the head of the households, need to set down strict Bible based codes of dress for both the boys and the girls. Parents need to instill in their children, at a very early age, the necessity of modest apparel. The only problem with this is that some parents are not in a position to be good teachers because they themselves are given to immodest dress. They need to remember that little children grow up to be adults and we need to practice modesty in dress ourselves and then we can begin developing our children's attitudes early concerning modesty, shamefacedness, and sobriety. Let us as parents realize that if we let our children run around half dressed at an early age, we are setting a pattern for them as they grow older.
Preachers and teachers need to speak out more against the immodest apparel that is being worn or, at least, is being tolerated by Christians. Silence never has and never will convict the one's guilty of immodest apparel.
---E.R. Hall, Jr.
"OH FOR THE GOOD OLE DAYS WHEN..."
..."BARE FIGURES" WERE THE LOWEST
PRICE ESTIMATE GIVEN FOR DOING A JOB,
NOT NAKED BODIES DISPLAYED IN PUBLIC!
...THE BABY SITTER'S NAME WAS "MOTHER"!
...CHRIST WAS PREACHED IN SIMPLE GOSPEL MEETINGS,
AND NOT THE ACCOMPLISHMENTS OF THE PREACHER.
...LOCAL CHURCHES WERE PREACHING AGENCIES
FOR THE LORD, NOT PROMOTION AGENCIES
FOR YOUTH ACTIVITIES AND OTHER
SOCIAL AND RECREATIONAL ACTIVITIES!
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