Daily Devotional for Saturday November 5, 2005
The Clothing a Woman Wears
(1 Timothy 2:9; 1 Peter 3:3,4; Isaiah 3:16-24)
This is a Devotional that is long overdue and one I have prayed over for many weeks prior to sending it out. It is important that you read ALL of it, and not take one part out of context. This is not only a legitimate issue, but one the church has quit preaching on for fear of offending people. I pray that the Holy Spirit will open your ears to hear all God is saying to you about this issue of the clothing a woman wears.
In dealing with this topic, we have to go to God?s Word, our final authority in all issues. The key word I want you to hear throughout this Devotional is ?modesty.? The key verse is found in 1 Timothy 2:9 where the Word says, ?I also want women to dress modestly, with decency and propriety.? I am fully aware that our present culture teaches the exact opposite which is why this message today is so critical. As I have stated often, for the child of God we are to live UP to the standards of God, and not DOWN to the standards of this world.
Let me make this first point perfectly clear. The moment you die and are standing before God, the only garment He is going to be interested in is to see if you are wearing the white robe of righteousness that comes from knowing Jesus Christ as your Savior. THAT is the only garment God is concerned about. It is your heart God will judge, not your wardrobe. This issue of dress is one of spiritual maturity, being more like Christ, having a desire to be the most effective servant of our Lord that you can be during this life.
In some churches, they have made it part of their rules for women to be dressed in certain ways. While I respect the heart and intention of these churches, they are not Biblically accurate. It is critical in studying the Bible that you understand the social and cultural issues involved in a passage as well as what God is saying. In giving the Law, God talks about how a woman is not supposed to dress as a man nor a man as a woman. While we are no longer under the Old Testament Law, it is a good reminder that even though men and women are 100% equal, they are also each unique with different roles to play. God also knew how bad a man would look in a dress.
As fashions have changed over the years, there are lots of clothing like blue jeans, t-shirts, sports jerseys, mostly casual clothing both men and women wear. When it comes to more formal dress, it is very obvious that the pants a woman might wear are very different than the pants a man would wear. It takes nothing away from a woman being a woman by wearing this type of clothing and is NOT what the Bible was speaking against, even in the Old Testament Law. So churches that force a woman to wear a dress are taking an extreme and unbiblical position.
The other issue the Bible speaks of in this area is hair and jewelry. Again, it is CRITICAL to understand the cultural and social issues involved at the time these passages were written. In the days the New Testament was written, Greek and Roman women were little more than property. They found their worth in their clothing, in their hair, and in their jewelry. Of course, as they came to know Christ as their Savior, they brought this part of their life into the church.
Peter helped these women understand where their true worth was found in 1 Peter Chapter 3. These words are just as applicable today as many women are in the same trap the women of that day were in. Trying to find their worth in the fashion of the day, the hairstyle of the moment, and the endless array of jewelry that is as close as your local mall or TV shopping channel. Peter said, ?Your beauty should not come from outward adornment, such as braided hair and the wearing of gold jewelry and fine clothes. Instead, it should be that of your inner self, the unfading beauty of a gentle and quiet spirit, which is of great worth in God?s sight.?
Let me come back to the word I want you to clearly hear today, and that is modesty. There is nothing wrong about dressing in a way to feel good about yourself. But the question is, do I feel good about myself because of what I am wearing, or who I am in Christ? Do I get my worth from how other people view me, or how God views me? Do I dress to impress others, or impress God? These are important questions you need to ask yourself.
There are two important Biblical principles I want you to be aware of. One is avoiding the appearance of evil, and the other is to not be a stumbling block. The world sends the exact OPPOSITE message. Appear evil and do your best to be a stumbling block. The media feeds women a steady diet of lies from the pits of hell of how a woman should dress from the music, television, and movie industries.
Don?t you realize when you dress like Paris, Britney, or Christina or any of these stars, you are sending a message that you are for sale? Just as bad, men are visual creatures. There are VERY FEW men on the face of this earth that don?t struggle with lust. Don?t you realize when you dress provocatively, you are being a stumbling block to men? Why give someone the false impression you are not a Godly woman just because of what you wear? Why cause a man to sin by lusting after you because of what you wear? Pray about what you wear when you are out socially, pray about what you wear when you go to work, and please, PRAY ABOUT WHAT YOU WEAR WHEN YOU GO TO CHURCH! When in doubt, remember Paul?s admonition, MODESTY.
I love you and care about you so much. This message today is about maturing in Christ, being a real woman of God. Like many of the women in the early church, there are many women that may be young in the Lord who simply don?t know they need to change the way they dress. That is why older women of the faith need to be involved in the lives of younger women, that is Biblical by the way (Titus 2:4), to help them know how God expects them to live and act and what to wear.
I will be praying for you today. Praying that God will speak to you through these words. Please don?t misunderstand this message. There is NOTHING wrong with a woman wearing nice clothes, looking her best, having her hair done nicely, or wearing jewelry. Simply be cognizant that in what you wear you do not give the ?appearance of evil,? or are a stumbling block to others. The key is to know that your worth to God is not in what you wear on the outside, but in who you are on the inside. It is not your clothes God will judge, it is your heart!