> scantily-dressed women on the streets, and near-naked billboards
> filling the
Reminds me of when we (me, my wife, my children) went to visit a PRC family in Michigan. We went to the shores of Lake Michigan, and all over the place were women dressed like whores (in their bikinis and whatever). I was extremely disgusted, and we got out of there. And the people we were with were surprised at my reaction. Folks, we need to be REPULSED by such things. We shouldn't even be at these beaches with our families. Why is it that people (even professing Christians) think that it is okay to be half-naked as long as there is sand and water around, whereas they would be shocked if people wore the same things to a worship service?
> Without getting to much into things, I am astonied at your response. Not
> because I disagree, but because I wish I had the kind of sensitivity of
> heart you have. You are repulsed at these things, but I'm often
> tempted. My
> eye roams far more often than it should (especially given that it should
> Do you have any tips for people like me who have hardened their
> hearts (to a
> very real degree) when it comes to these sins.
First of all, I don't want to set myself up on a pedestal as some holier-than-thou person. We all have weaker areas and stronger areas, and I'm sure I'm weaker than others in some areas. One of the great things about fellowship with the brethren is that we can exhort, admonish, and rebuke each other in love with the aim of building each other up. If we've been through a particular battle, or if we have a strength in a certain area, we can bring our experience and share it with others to spur each other to love and good deeds.
I think I became the most disgusted with whorish dress when I was an undergraduate in college. I heard more than ever before what most of the men talked about and looked at. And I saw that most of the women wanted the men to do this and encouraged it by the way they dressed. It was like being in a big whore-house. And the more I thought about it, the more I saw that the almost all of the women's fashion industry is designed around whorishness. It was incredibly disgusting. Perhaps the reason it disgusted me as much as it did is because we did not have a television until I was in 8th grade, and even when we did get the television, we didn't watch it very much. I think one of the things that hardens people more than anything else is watching people in whorish dress on television. It becomes the norm. And television doesn't just tolerate whorish dress; it openly promotes it and encourages people to use it as a means to fulfill their lusts.
As far as tips go -- I don't have a miracle cure for you. I encourage you to read the Bible's descriptions of whores and then consider that whores are pictures of false gospels and those who promote false gospels.
Some passages to read:
Isaiah 3:16-24 (interestingly, the "wanton eyes" mean seductive looks, winking seductively, and setting off the eyes with paint -- yep, eye makeup!)
> Not to gain, maintain, or improve upon my salvation, of course. I know my
> salvation is not based on my moral strivings, but I do desire to
> live in a
> more upright manner.
Yes, this is the desire of all Christians. Our personal purity forms no part of the ground of our salvation, but the believer will strive for purity in all areas of life as a response of gratitude for God who has already blessed us with all spiritual blessings in Christ.
> I am daily troubled by my compromises, not over the
> gospel, but over my reactions to the moral carnality of my surroundings.
It is good that you are troubled. But what does that troubling lead us to do? Well, we could hole ourselves up and withdraw from the world, which is not what God would have us to do. Yet we are to live IN the world without becoming STAINED by it. How can we do this? It's not easy. It's a constant struggle. Although we are not to withdraw from the world, we are also not to go out of our way to put wicked things before our eyes. So we should be in places as much as possible where this kind of dress is less likely to occur. And we should NOT be watching television shows in which this kind of dress is put forth.
> I know I contribute to this by the music I listen to sometimes,
> as well as
> what I watch.
Okay, so you've identified two things.
> I try to abstain from them, but these carnal things
> have been
> so much a part of my life that it seems to be a recurring plague.
> How does
> one begin to put these things aside.
Well, just think -- when you listen to or watch what you know you shouldn't, you are soiling yourself. No, I'm not saying that you come under God's wrath, but I am saying that you are dirtying your mind. Of course, our minds never meet up to the standard of perfection, but this should NEVER be an excuse to bring filth into it. You need to FLEE these things. FLEE! And if you find yourself enjoying this filth, remind yourself that this filth is a picture of the spiritual whoredom that you abhor.
I hope this helps in a little way.
I want to let out, amongst my brothers, some disgust for the world in one particular area. Yeah, yeah, I know some of you might react by saying, "Marc, the world is the world, and of course the world is disgusting (duh!), and you ain't gonna change it," and I would say, you're right, I ain't gonna change it and I'm really not out to change it, but I'm disgusted with it anyway, and I want to let you know my disgust in this area. Also, even Christians can get caught in the trap of the world in this area, not even thinking about it, so maybe this will help bring attention to it so we can avoid being like the world.
Okay, here goes ...
Recently, I was shopping for fleece tops (sometimes known as "sweatshirts" -- almost like long-sleeve T-shirts but thicker) for my children. In the department store in which I was shopping, (as in all department stores I know of), there were separate sections for girls' and boys' fleece tops. As I was looking at what to buy for the girls, I noticed one thing that was different between the girls' and boys' tops: the hole for the head was noticeably bigger for the girls' tops. Now what do you think that was all about? Is it because girls' heads are bigger than boys' heads? Of course not. Upon closer inspection, the hole was actually shaped differently as well as being bigger. What was it for? It was for the neckline to be lower on the girls' tops! Even in clothing for girls this young (my girls are ages 7 and 5), the world of female fashion is already trying to get girls to expose their chests! Why is it that, for the most part (I know there are exceptions), tops for women/girls have a much lower neckline than tops for men/boys? The reason is that the wicked world of fashion is driven by the notion that women should dress like whores. And, since most women WANT to dress like whores, the wicked world of fashion is very willing to give them what they want. At first, it's just a little bit of a lower neckline than the men, exposing more of the chest. But it quickly descends into exposing parts of the breasts. It is ABSOLUTELY DISGUSTING. And when you see that this wickedness even descends to dress for little girls, the disgust grows. You know what -- there is HARDLY ANYTHING that is made nowadays just for girls that we would let our girls wear! The girls' fashions (not just fleece tops) are absolutely wicked! And clothes for women aren't any better. Again, there is HARDLY ANTYHING that is made nowadays just for women that my wife would wear! There's always SOMETHING that the fashion designers wish to expose, whether it be the front neckline or the back neckline or the midriff ... hey, that reminds me of another disgusting thing. Why is it that tops for females are SHORTER than tops for males? Not only do they have lower necklines, they are actually shorter as well! Of course, we know why -- it's to expose the midriff. It's all driven by sexual lust.
So, how are we Christians to deal with this? We need to be VERY CAREFUL in what we buy and wear. Men, you need to make sure that your wives and daughters are COVERED. There is absolutely no reason why a woman's/girl's top should not be as close to the neck as a man's/boy's crew-neck t-shirt. If it deviates from this, then you must ask yourself WHY is this top made the way it is -- WHY does it expose more of the chest than a typical man's shirt? And the only answer you're gonna come up with is that it is made the way it is for wicked reasons. Christian women who wear such things are basically in two camps: One is just ignorant of the fact that their tops are different in neckline than men's tops and just buy in ignorance. The other is aware that their tops are different in the neckline but think that it's okay because lower necklines indicate "femininity." Both camps need to wake up and realize that they are in violation of 1 Timothy 2:9, repent of their disobedience, and seek to obey God's Word in the area of modesty.
Okay, enough ranting. But it really is a serious thing. The world will do everything it can to make us become like them. Let us shun worldliness.
I've read through the posts on this thread, and I think this discussion is quite good. We need to think about these things.
I see the main question as this:
Is it okay to go ANYWHERE to enjoy God's creation, no matter who is there or what is going on there?
Suppose you decide to take a vacation to the French Riviera, where there are nude beaches. Do you "have liberty to enjoy God's creation without worries of anyone there"?
If one takes his children to a place where there is public nudity (or even public semi-nudity as in the popular U.S. beaches), what is one teaching his children? Curt posted something that should make us think: he's become hardened to all the whorish dress around him and is even tempted by it. Is that what we want for our children?
Suppose there is a masterpiece of architecture in Boston -- a grand building that is one-of-a-kind. But suppose it is now occupied by prostitutes; it is a whore-house. Is it okay to visit this building to admire the architecture, going into the room and witnessing what goes on there, just so we can see the beautiful architecture inside the building? Would we subject our children to this?
Think about it.
<<You know Marc, I see this trend also! Not only is it with clothes, but also buying toys, such as dolls for my little girl (who is 2).
What I mean, is that even the dolls look more and more like whores! It's amazing how they even want their little girls looking like
this! Well, may our Lord keep us from this evil and may He bless you all
It is great to see that you are so discerning. Yes, it's the same with dolls! And it's the same with many children's books! And it's the same with all of the popular children's movies! The world inculcates this into little girls (and into little boys by showing that it is the "normal" way females dress) from very early on! I think of the Disney animated movies as a prime example. The "heroines" of these movies are always dressed like whores! It doesn't matter what the movie is about, the "good" females are either strapless or low-low-cut. It never fails. Why is that? Why is it that the children's animators want to do this? Pretty obvious, huh?
Someone made a comment a while ago that I thought was very good regarding the hypocrisy of women who wear bikinis to the beach. They'll wear what amounts to underwear in public on a beach, yet they'd be offended if someone saw them in their underwear in their homes. What hypocrisy.
Also, why is it that it would be considered lewd and unacceptable for a woman to walk down the streets of a city in a bikini (or even the standard one-piece bathing suit) or go to the office in such an outfit, yet it's totally acceptable on the beach? What is it about sand and water that makes the standard of decency change?
There's a booklet entitled "Christian Modesty and the Public Undressing of America" by Jeff Pollard that is available free from Mt. Zion Publications. It makes some good points (although I do not endorse everything in it and certainly do not endorse Mt. Zion Publications).
Of course, we're going to be called legalists or legalistic by some when we talk of modesty. But we know that our zeal for modesty does not form any part of the ground of our salvation or acceptance before God. We also know that those who are believers will desire to bring their lives into conformity with God's revealed will by way of command.
Thanks for bringing this up, Michael!
My thoughts on the things that have been recently discussed in this thread:
The Bible does not say exactly what length a woman's dress/pants should be. Yet it does say that women are to wear "proper clothing, with modesty and sensibleness." It's interesting that Paul does not go further to exactly define proper, modest, sensible clothing. What does this say to us? Did Paul not go into exact definitions because it's all relative, and what may seem modest to one person may seem immodest to another? No, it actually must be the opposite of that. He must have known that his audience knew what he meant by proper, modest, sensible clothing. Let's take the neckline as an example. If the neckline of a dress or shirt is lower than a man's neckline, what does this say? Is it because women have bigger heads? No. It is obviously a sexual thing. So any neckline that is lower than a man's neckline is to be avoided. (And yes, I've seen the men's necklines that scoop low, but that is not the norm. And the low-scooping necklines of the men should also be avoided.) How about the length of a dress? Well, common sense/decency would say that it should be long enough that it cannot be looked up into when the woman is walking or sitting.
All of the admonitions regarding modesty are talking about when someone is in public (which includes if there are visitors in your own house). So this would go for braiding of the hair. Braiding it to keep it out of the way when no one else is around is not forbidden. But braiding it to keep it out of the way when there are others around is forbidden. Same goes for anything else regarding modesty. But I must ask this (for consideration; you don't need to answer publicly): why would painting your face while you're alone make you feel better? Is there a dissatisfaction with how God made your face to look?
Regarding makeup in public: I see absolutely no reason why a Christian woman would do this. Biblically, all face-painting was done by wicked people for wicked purposes. If the reasoning is, "because if I didn't, I'd look like death warmed over," then you'd be saying that God has made your face look like death warmed over, and you want to change that. Even if one is not consciously doing it to attract the opposite sex, it is done to "look better." It is adding to your face. A person could say that she got plastic surgery to make her look younger because if she didn't, she'd look like death warmed over. Is that a good enough reason to get plastic surgery? Are old people supposed to change their faces to make themselves look younger? And if women are supposed to be "shame-faced" (Greek meaning "downcast eyes") anyway, what is the purpose of makeup or plastic surgery other than to raise one's self up in public when the woman should not be seeking to do such?
Now Christians are not to call attention to themselves, so I see nothing wrong with being clean and not having messy hair or clothes. But this can cross the line into calling attention to one's self if one goes too far. An example is perfume (for women; I don't remember what it's called for men). It's okay to have good hygiene so you don't smell bad, but to add some kind of perfume (especially the stronger stuff) is calling attention to yourself. This goes for men as well as women. How are the after-shave men's "perfumes" advertised? To attract women. Why would one add a perfume to an already clean and ok-smelling body? It must have to do with calling attention to one's self, whether sexually or otherwise.
Regarding women wearing pants: The Bible does not prohibit women from wearing pants. In fact, women's pants are more modest than most women's dresses/skirts! It's interesting that some of the fundamentalist denominations forbid the women to wear pants, yet their women are more immodest than if they were not prohibited from wearing pants!
Hope these comments are helpful.
If any of you guys are familiar with my previous writings about female clothing, you'll know that I get angry whenever I go shopping
for clothes for our girls. And my wife gets angry whenever she goes shopping for herself and our girls. It is disgusting to see that
stores (even K-Mart, Wal-Mart, Sears, etc.) expect all girls and women, including MY girls and MY wife, to dress like whores. If I
could get to the owners of these companies, I would.
Our family went shopping for clothes again last week, and once again, I was angered. So let me rant a little to get it off my chest, okay?
We were shopping for something as simple as t-shirts for my girls and button-down shirts for my wife. We go over to the girls' t-shirt section, and EVEN THE T-SHIRTS for the girls are designed differently than the boys' t-shirts. Not only do they have lower-scooped necklines, but the shirts are SHORTER! So my little girls are expected to expose their chest AND their midriffs! This just disgusts me to no end! So we end up buying boys' t-shirts that have high necklines and that are much longer. WHY is it that girls' and boys' t-shirts are designed differently? We all know why, don't we? For the most part, male clothes are not designed to be sexually attractive, but female clothes are designed to be sexually attractive. This makes me angry. Then my wife was looking for button-down shirts. And -- I'm sure you guessed it -- the difference between the men's button-down shirts and the women's button-down shirts is PURELY ONE OF SEXUAL LUST. Most of the women's shirts don't button as high as men's. WHY IS THAT? And the women's shirts are WAY SHORTER than the men's shirts. WHY IS THAT? My wife will have nothing to do with this wickedness. And I am angry at the stores for expecting that my wife will wear such whorish dress. So if she wants a button-down shirt, she has to buy a men's shirt. I AM DISGUSTED. YOU CLOTHING DESIGNERS AND DISTRIBUTORS MAKE ME WANT TO PUKE.
Okay! Rant over!
May we ALL pay close attention to PERSONAL PURITY in how we dress.
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