A. Subject should be of interest to all of us.
B. What we wear tells something about us.
C. Affects us everyday of our lives.
1. Everyday we make decision on what we wear.
2. Everyday we see decision others made about what to wear.
D. God will hold us responsible for these decisions.
I. Clothing Tells Something About You: Character, attitude, and gender.
A. Character (position) and gender.
1. Gen. 38:13-19 Tamar had on "widow's garments".
a. She laid these aside and put on a veil. In so doing, Judah
thought her to be a harlot.
b. Not a "widower's garment" but a "widow's garment".
2. Ezra 3:10 "priests in their apparel"
a. Not "widow's garment"
3. Esther 6:8 "royal apparel"
a. Not "priests in their apparel" nor "widow's garment"
4. Prov. 7:10 "attire of a harlot"
a. Not "royal", "priest", or "widow"
1. 2 Sam. 14:2 "mourning apparel"
C. Clothing always tells something about people.
D. We must acknowledge that God has given guidelines concerning clothing and
whatever God's Word teaches about it is what you and I will face in day
1. Must not ignore it, shrug it off, or laugh about it.
2. Must not be taken lightly.
E. We dress everyday, therefore, everyday we are either pleasing or displeasing
A. Many people think that since God has not named specific articles of
clothing that are right or wrong to wear, it does not matter what you wear
and that God is not concerned with what a person wears.
B. Though God has not named specific items of clothing to be worn or not
worn, He has given PRINCIPLES that we are to understand and make
C. These principles determine right or wrong!
D. How do we determine if clothes like shorts, halters, short dresses, bathing
suits, or tight fitting clothing are proper to be worn?
1. Some say, "I like this!", "This is stylish!", "It's what everyone is
a. Does this mean it's right or wrong? Neither one!
2. To determine right or wrong, we must go to the Word of God!
3. These things are not specifically named nor specifically forbidden.
III. What Are The Principles God Has Given? 1 Tim. 2:9,10
A. "Modest" -decent, restrained, simple in style.
1. Indecent, immodest is wrong!
B. "Sobriety" -purity, sound thinking.
C. "Shamefacedness" - bashful spirit, a sense of shame. "Modesty which is
'fast' or rooted in the character." (Vine, Expository Dict. Of New
Testament Words, Vol. IV, p.17.)
1. Shame needs to be associated with nakedness. Rev. 3:17,18
a. Nakedness may refer to nudity or inadequate clothing.
(1) Adam and Eve were first "nude". Gen. 2:25; 3:7
(2) They were partially clothed with "aprons". Gen.
3:7,10. "aprons" -girdle, loin-covering. (Gesenius,
Hebrew & Caldee Lexicon.)
(3) God replaced the aprons which were inadequate
clothing with "coats". Gen. 3:21
"coats" - generally with sleeves, coming down to the
b. God replaced their shorts with garments covering from the
shoulders down to the knees to cover the shame of their
c. To uncover or see nakedness is a euphemism for sexual
intercourse. Lev. 18:6; 20:17. (Euphemism is the use of a
word or phrase that is less expressive but considered less
distasteful, less offensive than another; a word or phrase so
(1) Nakedness, with its sexual appeal and implications, is
a blessing IN marriage.
(2) Nakedness, with its sexual appeal and implications, is
a curse and a shame when displayed OUTSIDE
(3) The priests wore pants in addition to the outer robes.
(4) Even heathen women knew the embarrassment of
lifting their skirts to cross a river. Isa. 47:2,3
Exposing the thighs reveal the shame of nakedness!
2. This shame is exposed before men when a woman wears:
a. Skirts, dresses, and shorts above the knee.
c. Low cut dresses and blouses (front or back).
d. Strapless or backless dresses.
f. Tube or tank tops.
g. High split dresses that expose the thighs.
h. Tight or formfitting attire (leotard, bicycle shorts, etc.)
i. The generally abbreviated uniforms worn by majorettes,
cheerleaders, and flag or drill teams.
3. A man in shorts revealing his thighs and without a shirt exposes the
shame of his nakedness to women.
4. What about the person who can dress in an immodest fashion and
not feel ashamed? It's wrong!
a. They have LOST that sense of shame that would otherwise
prevent them from wearing such clothing.
5. If parents have lost sense of shame to some degree, child is likely to
have even a lesser sense of shame.
6. We do ourselves and our children a great harm when we allow our
sense of shame to be diminish.
7. We lose our sense of shame when we condition ourselves to wear or
see things repeatedly. We become conditioned and thus calloused or
"seared". 1 Tim. 4:2.
D. Gal. 5:19-21 "Lasciviousness" - Work of flesh
1. Define "wantonness" in Rom. 13:13
2. Means "that which would produce leud or lustful thoughts or emotions".
E. Distinction between male and female.
1. Not a "widower's garment" but a "widow's garment"-a woman and
not a man's garment. (Gen. 38)
2. The "attire of a harlot" (Prov. 7) suggest a woman.
3. 1 Cor. 6:9
IV. Must Walk By Faith. 2 Cor. 5:7; Rom. 10:17; 14:23
A. The principles we follow must be based on what God says.
B. Must be God's Word..
1. What we like or don't like has nothing to do with it.
C. Col. 3:17 "whatsoever ye do...do all..."
1. Wearing clothing is something we DO - it is a deed that is done and
we do it everyday.
V. Is It Right For Men To Wear Dresses Or Feminine Type Clothing? and Is It Right For Women
To Wear Pants Or Masculine Type Clothing?
A. Consider this question:
Suppose I (a man) had decided to wear a dress to the services. Would there
be anything wrong with that?
1. After all, I don't find the Bible saying to a man, "Thou shalt not
wear a skirt."
2. Somebody says, " I don't believe you ought to."
3. Why don't you believe I should?
4. Somebody asks, "Do you think God will be pleased with it?"
Answer: "On what basis do we determine?"
5. If God has authorized it, it doesn't matter whether you like it nor
does it matter what you think! I could put on a dress or skirt!
6. If God has not authorized it, then I ought not clothe myself in such a
7. If one divine principle is violated, I have no right!
B. What is to determine the answer?
1. Questions cannot be settled:
a. Based on human tradition.
b. Present practice.
e. Our own preferences or our own opinions.
B. We must ask, "Has God set forth principles that allows or forbids?"
1. We have seen that He has. 1 Tim. 2: 9,10; Gal. 5:19-21
2. Do we agree on the principles already examined? Namely:
e. Distinction between male and female
C. Something is not wrong simply because I don't like it!
Something is not right simply because I like it!
1. That settles nothing!
D. "Huntsville Times" 1985
Madame Mouselle (magazine) 1985 ponders men's skirt revival. "They
may not be wearing them yet in your neighborhood but it never hurts to be
prepared. Writer, Judith Thurman, in the April Madame Mouselle ponders
the meaning behind the recent revived phenomonia of men wearing skirts.
'Men and women can still wear the same clothes and still remain men and
women', says one designer of skirts made for males."
E. Phil Donohue Show, Dec. 16, 1981, had two men who were designers of
men's skirts. One was dressed in a "skirt suit", the other in a dress. Women
in audience got upset at them wearing the dresses. Some said they couldn't
understand it at all. The man on stage wearing the skirt suit said, "I find
wearing a dress very comfortable. It's not tight like pants. The looseness
feels better, the air circulates better, and it's just more comfortable. The
only difference is that I have a suit without pants legs." A woman in the
audience who disapproved said, "It threatens my feminity. I would not go
out with a man wearing a skirt. I'd divorce my husband if he wore one!" To
that the men replied, "Are you for discrimination or do you want to be
fair?" He went on to explain that he and the other gentlemen designed skirts
depending on what they wanted to do whether to play, or hunt, or go out to
eat. One woman in the audience said, "I can't see you wearing your skirt to
the office." To which the men replied, "Why? When women first started
wearing pants to the office they weren't accepted but over a period of time,
look what's happened." A woman in the audience who approved said, "I
hope it catches on so one day my son can wear a skirt because now my
daughter wears his jeans!"
The rest of the program had men using same arguments for wearing dresses
as women were arguing for wearing pants.
(1) I believe there would be men willing to wear dresses though there
might just be a few at the beginning. When it all began with women
wearing pants, only a few were brave enough to start but there
became to be more and more. Now you can hardly find a woman
who doesn't wear pants.
(2) I would dare say the point has been reached where some girls and
women do not have a dress or skirt in their entire wardrobe.
(a) Is is the logical progression for those who are unaware of the
teaching of God's Word on the subject of proper clothing.
F. When a woman wears masculine type clothing, one or more principles are violated.
1. In beginning it was slacks and they were pretty slack.
2. Now, 9 out of 10 will at some time or another wear pants and jeans
that get tighter, more form fitting, and revealing every curve.
3. A few years ago undergarments had to undergo a major overhaul
so they would leave no seams or lines to show underneath the
clothing--THIS IS IMMODEST whether its pants or dresses!
4. When the move is made toward looser fitting pants, they appear
more manly and masculine. Thus, violating another principle-Distinction.
VI. Notice Bible Principles:
A. "In the beginning God made them male and female" (Gen.1:27; Mat. 19:4)
1. God made them different.
a. Different from all animals.
b. Different from each other.
2. Why did He make them different?
a. So they could try to look alike and act alike?
b. What a contradiction!
c. He made them different because they had different roles.
d. We are going contrary to God to blur or destroy that
distinction either in physical appearance or in roles.
3. Notice the distinction:
a. Gen. 2:18 God created woman to be a help suitable for man.
b. Gen. 3:16 Woman's desire to be to husband and he would
rule over her.
c. Gen. 3:17-19 Man was to work to provide for woman.
d. Gen. 3:23 Assigned man work of tilling ground.
e. Gen. 3:16 Assigned woman work of bearing children.
B. Under Law of Moses God demanded distinction be maintained between
man and woman.
1. Deut. 22:5 Distinction in dress.
a. Therefore, coats God made in Gen. 3:21 must have been
2. Distinction is a divine principle. Certainly, we are not under law of
Moses but can we violate God's principle of distinction?
3. What would you think about a man today putting on lipstick,
fingernail polish, and earrings? What would be wrong with that?
a. He's acting liking something he's not.
b. He's a man acting like a woman.
c. That would be a man acting and dressing feminine and God
made a man masculine.
d. On same basis, God made woman feminine and women
ought not to act and dress like a man.
C. In N.T. there is distinction between male and female and God wants it maintained.
1. Different physically - observation tells us that and God has kept it
that way since the beginning.
2. Different roles:
a. Headship - 1 Cor. 11:3
b. Subjection - Eph. 5:22-23
c. Head covering - 1 Cor. 11:4,5
d. Hair length - 1 Cor. 11:14,15
e. Roles in the home - 1 Tim. 5:8; Tit. 2:3-5; 1 Tim. 5:14
f. Roles in marriage - 1 Pet. 3:7; Eph. 5:22,23
g. Roles in the church - 1 Cor. 14:34; 1 Tim. 2:11,12
D. These distinctions must not be removed or blurred for God set them in order.
1. Not a matter of choice.
2. Not a matter of "I like it" or "I don't like it".
E. Clothes, actions, or attitudes that blurr or destroy the distinction between
man and woman are sinful.
1. If I'm not a homosexual, I don't need to act like one.
2. If I'm not a thief, I don't need to act like one.
3. If I'm not a man, I don't need to act like one.
4. If I'm not a woman, I don't need to act like one.
F. Men are masculine by nature. Let men act and look like men.
Women are feminine by nature. Let women act and look like women.
1. Clothes, hair, actions indicate what we are.
2. Many women dress immorally not because they have attitude of
immorality but because that's the way the world dresses.
3. We must dress outwardly to match what we are inwardly and physically.
G. Women wearing masculine type clothing are giving endorsement to Women's
1. A movement to "equalize" or "nullify" distinction between sexes.
2. Majority of this indorsement is being done unintentionally.
3. It seeks to destroy every principle involved in the distinction
between the sexes.
4. It is sinful to endorse, either intentionally or unintentionally, such a
5. A Christian must seek to avoid any involvement or encouragement
in such a movement. 1 Tim. 5:22
6. Life magazine, Oct. 18, 1968, "Now it doesn't take a socialologist to
point out that we have reached the stage where nobody can tell male
from female anymore."
7. Family Health, Dec. 1970 "To at least one leading socialologist the
current vogue for interchangable his or her clothing has a really
ominous meaning. It is a sure sign that our society is undergoing a
massive dislocation of sexual indentity. We are headed on a careless
course toward desexualization with women becoming less womanly and men
more passive. There are signs of unisex everywhere.
Nowhere is it more blatant than in clothing. The question of clothing is
not so irrevelant or unimportant as it might appear. The blurring of
masculine and feminine distinction could spell disaster for the health of
our nation because people cannot cope with critical life situations until
they are certain of their identity as masculine and feminine. When the
sexual distinctions become blurred, individuals and society are in deep
a. These are people of the world saying this and we say, "We
don't see anything wrong with it".
b. Only if our senses are numb, can we not see and understand
the evil of this movement that has brought us to where we are
c. Yet, a vast majority of Christians are lending their support
by acting and dressing just like this movements wants them to!
H. If we wish to argue that because pant suits and jeans are designed for women thus
making them no longer masculine, I could just as easily change the zipper to the
front of a dress and argue the dress is no longer a feminine garment.
1. But can we not see that we are still blurring the distinction?!
A. The eternal principles of God's Word must be respected, if not by world, at
least by Christians.
B. Too often, we are pursuaded by the world to conform rather than be different.
C. Christians are to be salt and light but has our salt lost its potency and has
our light become so dim that it's hardly recongnizable?
D. How can our influence be any good to others if we are being influenced by the
principles of the world rather than principles of God's Word.?
E. Let us show the world we are Christians by our clothes, our actions, and