That ye may be blameless and harmless, the sons of God, without rebuke, in the midst of a crooked and perverse nation, among whom ye shine as lights in the world; Holding forth the word of life...
Philippians 2:15-16a

Tuesday, June 21, 2011


Is modesty important?  Does it really matter?  Who defines what is modest and what isn't?  

I read an article the other day in which the author stated that the church has fallen victim to letting pop culture dictate its standards and behaviour.  I agree.  Society dictates what the world does, thinks, says, and how it acts.  The church has given in.  Christians are letting society determine the answers to questions like "what is modest?" instead of seeking answers from God.

I attended a wedding this past weekend where the pastor's wife was the most immodestly dressed person present.  Initially I was shocked!!!  I think my jaw might have dropped open right in front of her when she turned and faced my direction.  I tried to recover my composure quickly, but I was so disgusted, and also saddened, that a lady in that position would dress so immodestly.  I'm not talking about something that was borderline, or showed off just a little tease of skin.  It was downright IMMODEST!  There's less savoury words to describe what she was wearing, but I'll leave it at that.

My initial reaction of shock soon turned to sadness, as I saw some young teenage girls who attend that church and what they were wearing.  Perhaps a nice outfit by the world's standards, but not really modest.  Then I thought, what choice do they have?  Their pastor's wife certainly wasn't giving them a good example to follow!  I started thinking how difficult it would be to raise godly young girls to have a sense of modesty and femininity when the leadership is "showing it all off" per se.  

What does dressing to "show off" do to a woman and to those around her?  It tells people she doesn't respect herself enough to cover up what's only for her and her husband.  It invites men to have a look (i.e. lust).  It creates pride that she can show off her good body.  It brings the focus to herself, and how she looks.    

How we treat our bodies is important to God. What? know ye not that your body is the temple of the Holy Ghost which is in you, which ye have of God, and ye are not your own? For ye are bought with a price: therefore glorify God in your body, and in your spirit, which are God's.  (I Cor. 16:19-20).  The way we dress is part of how we treat our body, and this verse tells us we are to use our bodies to glorify God!  God designed our bodies with parts that are only for our husband or wife to see.  Showing those parts off in public, even if it's only a little, goes against God's design, and is therefore not glorifying to Him .  It's actually misusing what God created.  

Modesty is an issue every Christian woman AND man must settle in his or her own heart.  The Bible gives clear examples and principles about what is modest and what is not.  You must decide how God wants you to apply those principles in your life.  Being modest is not an option for a Christian.  Letting the world decide our standard of modesty is not an option for a Christian either.  The world doesn't care about God's design for our bodies.  It doesn't care about glorifying God with our bodies.  Therefore, its standards of modesty do not stem from the proper motive.  Besides, in this day and age it seems the world has NO standard of modesty.  Just about anything goes, and that is not what is seen in the Scripture.

God has given us women a powerful tool to determine what is modest. It's our conscience.  There have been many times when I've put on a particular shirt or skirt, looked in the mirror, and something in my mind told me I shouldn't wear it.  Maybe it was just a bit too tight, or a little too low, or just a bit too short, and my conscience gently said, "you shouldn't wear that."  But that's the thing about your conscience.  It doesn't scream in a loud speaker, DON'T WEAR THAT!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!! (well, maybe sometimes it does :). It prods gently.  It's quiet and small.  It's meek nature makes it easy to ignore.  That's why we must be careful not to implicitly trust our conscience.  Over time the conscience can be hardened.  The Bible calls it seared (I Tim. 4:2).   The Bible must always be our final authority.  Sometimes I've put on clothes that are immodest and my conscience said nothing, but I know that they don't measure up to the standard in God's Word.  We must carefully protect our conscience, so that it will remain a valuable tool in our Christian walk.  The only way to protect our conscience is to listen to it!

I know Christians have differing opinions on what is and is not modest; however, I also know that being modest pleases God.  I know that when a woman submits to dressing for the Lord, He will lead and guide her to what are the proper clothes.  God does have a standard when it comes to modesty.  A careful study of Scripture will reveal that.  You can be sure that His standard is VASTLY different from the world's standard.

I Timothy 2:9-10 In like manner also, that women adorn themselves in modest apparel, with shamefacedness and sobriety; not with broided hair, or gold, or pearls, or costly array; But (which becometh women professing godliness) with good works.


  1. Thanks Earl. Thanks also for linking to my post on Sixteen Eleven :). I've visited your site a few times.

  2. Being a leader is difficult-- you must hold a higher standard than the followers. The Bible's clear on that in Galatians. That pastor's wife is accountable for the standard that she sets!

    Although the borderline of modesty may be subjective, there are things that are clearly immodest.

    Thanks for taking the time to make a statement on this subject, and for taking a stand for modesty!

  3. Hello MInTheGap,
    The borderline of modesty is always subjective. This is where the difficulty lies. But, you are right, some things are clearly immodest!

    This pastor's wife will be held accountable, if not by her husband or her church, one day by God. It breaks my heart to see Christians in positions of leadership, who don't take their responsibility seriously. I'm not advocating women dressing in sacks and covering every inch of skin, but setting the bar a little higher is never a bad thing.

    Thank you for your encouraging comment :). My prayer is that more Christians will take a stand for modesty!

  4. "This pastor's wife will be held accountable, if not by her husband or her church, one day by God."

    Don't presume to think who should be judged for God by anything. God will judge you for judging others.

    this is the work of a blogger who wants to be heard because nobody will actually listen to their "opinion"

    did you say anything to these people? im sure such a holier than thou person would have said something to them....

  5. Hello Anonymous,
    Comments like yours used to bother me... they don't anymore.

    While you say I shouldn't presume to judge, you have judged me by calling me "holier than thou." I have judged only what the Scriptures say. God will hold us accountable!!! I Corinthians 3 is very clear about that (as are many other passages) You have judged my heart and my motive by using the "holier than thou" label, and that is something you have NO WAY of knowing. You don't even know me!!!! And you've used no Scripture whatsoever to back up your accusation.

    Perhaps God will judge me for judging others. Again, a very judgemental statement on your part. I'd really like to know why it's OK for you to say God will judge me, but it's not OK for me to say God will judge someone???

    I have lots of opinions, but I try very hard to base my opinions on Scripture. It's only what God says that matters. If you can show me from the Bible that I'm wrong, I am willing to listen. However, accusations like you have made hold no weight with me. They are not biblical and they are hypocritical.

    BTW, why is it the people who leave nasty comments never give their real name????