The life and calling of certain people can be readily identified by the clothing that is worn. We are able to recognize a law enforcement officer, a soldier, a fireman. the mail carrier and other folk by the clothing that they wear. Even in the realm of sports, we identify our favorite team by the uniform. In the religious realm we are able to discern a woman of the Amish sect as well as some women of the Muslin cult.
Let’s take a look at the testimony the apparel of a blood bought, born again Christian woman. We will begin by searching the Bible for the standards which the Lord has established as his guideline for appropriate dress. We find in the scripture that God commands women to wear modest clothing, and rightly so. Many a man has been tempted by the mere sight of a scantily clothed female…Ladies, this ought not to be; we should never be a stumbling block for any man let alone a brother-in-the-Lord.
Granted, most Godly women choose not to wear blatantly immodest clothing. However, consideration also needs to be addressed in the fabric, style, and cut of the garment when purchasing a particular item of clothing. Does the cut emphasize the bust line? Is the fabric clingy and alluring? Does the style mimic fashion worn by the Hollywood crowd? Keeping the neckline high and the hemlines low, at or above the knee is most appropriate. For our sisters who are on the ‘fluffy’ side, longer hemlines may be preferable. Most ladies who are in within the fellowship of believers are careful that their clothes do not give off a suggestive testimony. 1 Timothy 2:9 would be a good verse to memorize not only in regards to the modesty issue but also in other aspects of dress for the Woman of God.
A woman shall not wear that which pertaineth unto a man. Whoa, what a statement; one that has caused many a controversy within various fundamental churches of today. Deuteronomy 22: 5, specifically states that God’s women are not to wear mens clothing. This truth has elicited a range of thoughts from zero tolerance to total apathy. Pants! The issue has caused division among Godly Christian women. The best advice is to submit to the preference of your Pastor and your husband. My Pastor for example, has set the “standard” that the women in position of ministry within the church will not wear pants when serving. His “preference” on the other hand is that all the women in his congregation would not wear pants to church. Ladies do wear pants to our church services and they are lovingly received. I have never known my Pastor to be a respecter of persons, and neither is God. What you wear in your home and in the market place is at the discretion of your husband and your conviction. However, the garment should be pleasing to the Lord. I often cringe at the site of a female in skin-tight britches that reveal the crooks, crevices and panty lines of the person. This practice is not only repulsive, but also sensual. In addition, the hip huggers type of britches often expose too much hip, if you get my drift. A well dressed lady wearing a modest pants outfit in a church service is not offensive to me, but I do have a personal dislike of ladies wearing jeans to church.
Jeans have become the uniform of the world. This garment is one of the unisex symbols of the unsaved. I am among the very few women who do not even own a pair of jeans. In 2 Samuel 12:20, we read that even King David changed his work apparel when he came into the house of the Lord to worship. There are events when it would be considered appropriate for men to wear jeans at church, such as a work day. This would also be an appropriate occasion for women to wear modest loose fitting britches, instead of jeans. Women have worked in skirts and blouses for ions, and I still do. The ruggedness of the denim fabric alone suggests that this is a man’s attire. Granted, these are my convictions, but I encourage ladies to prayerfully consider how the garment they wear affects their testimony of their love for the Lord. As I have stated, my personal conviction is that when a lady attends a church service, she should wear clothing that is pleasing to the Lord. If we have the means to dress in feminine ‘church’ clothes, then this ought to be our practice.
In the book of Esther 5:11, the example is set forth that when we are going to be in the presence of the King, we should wear our royal apparel. Granted, God does not expect us to show up wearing a tiara, costly jewels and other formal attire. It would suggest, however, that when we come together to worship our Lord and King, that we do so in clothing that reflects our love, adoration and gratefulness for what He has done for us. It is important that we do not have respect of persons when it comes to their apparel. This issue is addressed in James chapter 2. We are not to despise those who are financially unable to purchase clothing suitable for wearing to church. Being in that situation myself years ago, I prayed and asked the Lord to provide me with modest dresses that I could wear to church and within two weeks I was given a sackful of nice dresses.
In closing, what we wear does not always exemplify where we are spiritually. The thoughts set forth in this article are for prayerful consideration by those saints who seek to please the Lord in this particular area of their walk. In addition, we should always be sensitive to the leading of the Holy Spirit in every area of our life. As we aspire to do that which is pleasing to the Lord may we honor our God and Saviour in the area of dress.