If a woman understands how the general man reacts or responds to a woman’s body then if she has the slightest desire to serve the Lord right she will naturally change the way she thinks about her clothes and it will influence the way she chooses the clothes she buys in the stores. She will not want to put a stumbling block before her brothers in the Lord. She will naturally desire to be blameless in her appearance and testimony with the men. But also in her testimony and influence with the younger ladies to stand pure and blameless. All of this in her heart comes about because of the work of the Holy Spirit who always leads in the truth and convicts us of sin, righteousness and judgment. His striving in us away from humanism towards the character of Christ; away from carnality into the beautiful, pure and blameless image of Jesus Christ.
Husbands and fathers, are far too quiet and silent about this in their homes. Women may recognize lust when they see it and react with a feeling of disgust but they don’t make the connection directly with how they themselves are dressing. Especially if it has not been openly talked about by the father and/or husband.
Women are so easily caught up in “what everyone is doing” or what is available in the shops and what is promoted in magazines and TV. They don’t think about how their body is portrayed and what it causes in men – the stumbling block it becomes for men. Women condemn lust in a man when they see it but somehow they don’t make the connection between the condemnable lust and their own clothes that they are wearing. Not realizing this makes them stand guilty before God as a stumbling stone because of the lust they caused.
This should not be too quickly excused by women and ladies. Yes, the lust in a pervert is inexcusable and they have a serious problem. But the large majority of decent men are influenced in different degrees by what they see in you as a woman. And they may hide the feelings that it naturally provokes and even be ashamed of it. This causes serious dilemma for them in their purity and the battle they fight is a serious and deadly one. That may very well leave them impure before God and short of His holiness because of what you, a woman, placed before them in the form of a stumbling block and the same will also leave you blamed by God for your uncareful and unsympathetic, reckless and to a large extent plain carnal behavior and justification of it. A large majority of women may very well stand before God one day with a sea of men around her whom she caused to stumble by modeling her body in a sexy form in front of them. She may use the excuse that they should’ve had self control, maturity, etc but the fact is she didn’t have it herself and was far too deliberately ignorant. God says if a man even so much as looks at a woman with lust in his heart he is guilty of adultery. Now, if you don’t have the proper godly desire to be totally blameless in your dress and conduct how do you know how many, many times your careless and uncareful attitude makes decent men stumble. Oh, how are you not accountable before God for all the men that you know and live among whether they are brothers of the faith or still in the world? How do you not stand accountable before God? Even unto those who will see you only once or twice in their life. How many decent men can cause to stumble in a life time? How much blood can you gather on your hands and keep gathering it because of shallow excuses to dress the way you want, and not be sensitive towards those around you. Whether it be men and how they perceive you and how you influence them. Or whether it be the example you set for other women and girls. If you be a true Christian and are living “on the edge” how will you not cause justification in the lives of other very pretty women and young ladies causing them to reason, “If you who seems to be a stronger Christian can do it, then surely we can too”. Oh, how much blood can you spill? Because of your simple refusal to be blameless and to dress yourself as close to the cross as you can far away from the edge of the cliff. Too often Christians live as close to the edge of the cliff as they can rather than as close to the cross as they can. This is the life of blamelessness by which you will be blameless before God in as far as you were a temptress and justifier of edgy lewdness to other women.
If you live a life of blamelessness is this not the safest place for yourself and your personal walk with the Lord and for the Holy Spirit to be able to use you powerfully in His service. But if you justify yourself will you not quench the Holy Spirit when you make both men and women stumble? How will you have the peace that passeth all understanding because of the Holy Spirit testifying with your heart that you are a daughter of God? Would a daughter of God or a woman of God do such a thing?
Fathers and husbands, break the silence! You are responsible before God; called by God to be a watchman, to be salt and to be light. You must break that silence lest your salt loose its savour and your light be hidden. Be a watchman for your wives and daughters that they be not guilty of being stumbling stones for your brothers. And be watchmen on the walls for your brother’s sakes. Take care of your brother’s hearts by keeping your women from being stumbling stones.
Women like to blame men for being unspiritual but they themselves are unspiritual in the way they look and in their conduct. Blame shifting isn’t going to work when you stand before God because God does not look at WHO is right but He plainly states WHAT is right and He gives grace to live it. And if we don’t make use of that grace we fall from it into hell.
The way a woman looks can be a great encouragement toward godliness or it can be an encouragement toward lust. The way you look can be either building up, encouraging others toward purity and rightness before God or it can be pulling them down towards worldliness and carnality and lust. So the way you live in this area can be a stumbling stone or a stepping stone. The way you look has a great influence on others.
How are you influencing the people around you by the way you look?
The world will be the world and they will walk in the lust of their desire. Unregenerated men especially unmarried men in many cases want their girlfriends to expose and show their pretty assets because it gives them a sense of satisfaction, a type of bragging satisfaction towards other young men to boast of the beauty of the girl they won even if it is just for a season. Even some worldly married men would fall in this category. But for the most part, as soon as husbands become fathers of daughters their perspectives change all of a sudden. Then they don’t want all the things for their daughters which they used to walk in freely and in shame. This is plain carnality and a lustful life, just one of the many attributes of a life of lust. Some may be guilt manipulated away from worldliness because of a sense of shame but they will remain goats at heart. But there is another category, and that is the pagan category. Witchcraft, Satanism and some people in the esoteric philosophies, to these groups and their half ignorant followers, lewdness and sexual immorality is their purity. By these things they receive more power in occultism in their working with “energies” (these energies are what the Bible calls demons) and are “freed” more from “religious tutelage” as they would refer to it. Which one can sympathize with because 90 percent of Christianity is tutelage and hell will be filled with such religious cripples. This sort of religiousness is sick and always will be. The truly born again want nothing to do with it and always strives away from it. Their walk with their God is of a different caliber altogether. The various sects of the pagan world call the good and pure of God bad and the impure and bad things of the pit they call good. They are enlightened with the kingdom of darkness with their master Lucifer which means “light bearer”. Their so-called enlightenment establishes them in total darkness. And upon death they will go to that dreadful kingdom of darkness if they don’t repent.
Why do I mention this? Seemingly so out of context with the topic we’re dealing with. It actually has everything to do with it because throughout TV programs and Hollywood movies in many cases the characters in soap operas and movies must be initiated witches. Through these things they model the lifestyle of their realm as if it’s normal to act and live like that but it is totally contrary to the lifestyle of the Bible. After regeneration we are moved from darkness to light immediately. Then follows a life where we are moved continually by the Holy Spirit away from a lifestyle of worldliness and humanism where we have bought into the world in so many ideas through man’s reasoning or plain straightforward basic humanism. As a child of God the Holy Spirit convicts and convinces us continuously to change us by reconstructing our minds away from that thinking to a Biblical mindset. Our minds must now be changed to think like Christ thinks. Christ is the Word and the Word is God and Christ who is the Word revealed His mind and wisdom to us through Scripture. So by being thoroughly salted with Scripture we become salty. And our once dark lives become full of light. So after regeneration or rebirth we get a new mind and we will submit to the convicting power of the Holy Spirit. That is why when we become regenerated the Holy Spirit will virtually immediately deal with us on the area of modesty if we were not modest. Men and women alike will be moved by the Spirit of God to get rid of some clothing that does not conform to the holiness and purity of God.
How is it possible that upon regeneration thousands are not convicted of this matter of modesty and purity to be blameless before God and man. I would argue that much of the church today has ceased to be the bride of Christ. If we want to be changed in our minds to the image of our Savior we must break with worldliness and worldly mindedness because the battle is for the mind. This is why we must get away from the TV, Hollywood, all fashion magazines and plain humanistic magazines. As long as we read and watch and indulge in the thinkings of humanists we will sterilize our new Christian walk again with humanism and worldliness. The general media although it could be used for good -- the fact is it is not. This humanistic monster is the greatest evangelist for Lucifer’s realm and Christians that stay a part of it will probably never truly be fruitful in the true sense of what God’s definition of what fruitfulness is. Many seem fruitful but really measured with God’s standard their life’s work falls short of the glory of God and they rather glorify man’s reason than God’s reason. In this area of modesty the sensual and sexual is one of the greatest tools that Satan uses to sterilize God’s people. Then why are we even close to it. Why do we protect it? Why do we cuddle it by protecting it with all sorts of excuses? The TV is full of nakedness and nudity and sexual immorality. If we watch it we will be persuaded by it and justify it and you open a door for those things in your life. As we think so we will be. If we feed ourselves with these things we will be vastly influenced by it and we will think just like the world. This is why the vast visible church looks so much like the world because they feed on the same things as the world. How in God’s Name can we justify this wickedness. If you are a Christian and you watch soap operas you will mainly stay and be just like them.
If the glamour of the women in magazines like Cosmopolitan and hundreds others is your idea of glory and beauty then you are still solidly stuck in the world, dead to the things of God and you need to be regenerated away from it into the image of Christ Jesus the Saviour of dead souls.
The media for the most part proclaims the full message of worldliness and worldly mindedness in all its faculties. Even the so called good in it is saturated in humanism and self edification, man’s own goodness apart from God. How can we Christians whether men or women give our time or any time to these things. Things for which our Saviour had to die for. How can we be busy with it or give any time for it? The Bible says that we should not put any wicked thing before our eyes. The popular media is saturated with wickedness. It is the examples we see here and the philosophies and justifications of the world and the popularity of it that makes us deviate away from God’s purity and standard of modesty to these standards we view in the media which is full blown humanism. “Do what you want” “Do what you like” “Follow your heart” “Look the way you want to look, the way that makes you feel good, the way that satisfies your heart and makes you feel acceptable. This idea is totally separated from the Bible and the regenerated life. We cannot follow our hearts. God says our hearts are deceitful above all things. We cannot do what feels good because of the deceitfulness of the heart. We cannot do just what we want because the whole of God’s Word stands against doing what we want. We must do what God wants.
What does God say about modesty?
God himself covered Adam and Eve’s nakedness.
Gen 3:7 “And the eyes of them both were opened, and they knew that they were naked; and they sewed fig leaves together, and made themselves aprons.”
Gen 3:21 “¶ Unto Adam also and to his wife did the LORD God make coats of skins, and clothed them.”
Aprons were not acceptable to God. Aprons did not cover Adam and Eve enough to satisfy God so He made them coats. Coats cover up to the neck. Coats have sleeves. Coats conceal the body’s shape.
Ge 9:22 “And Ham, the father of Canaan, saw the nakedness of his father, and told his two brethren without.
23 And Shem and Japheth took a garment, and laid it upon both their shoulders, and went backward, and covered the nakedness of their father; and their faces were backward, and they saw not their father's nakedness.”
What do we see here? On Ham’s part there is a certain disregard for holiness, dishonour, uncarefulness… Whereas Shem and Japheth were blessed because of their honour and carefulness.
1Pe 3:1 ¶ Likewise, ye wives, be in subjection to your own husbands; that, if any obey not the word, they also may without the word be won by the conversation of the wives;
2 While they behold your chaste conversation coupled with fear."
Adam Clarke's Commentary: Verse 2. Chaste conversation-with fear.] While they see that ye join modesty, chastity, and the purest manners, to the fear of God.
1Pe 3:3 Whose adorning let it not be that outward adorning of plaiting the hair, and of wearing of gold, or of putting on of apparel;
1Pe 3:4 But let it be the hidden man of the heart, in that which is not corruptible, even the ornament of a meek and quiet spirit, which is in the sight of God of great price.
Adam Clarke’s Commentary: All the ornaments placed on the head and body of the most illustrious female, are, in the sight of God, of no worth; but a meek and silent spirit are, in his sight, invaluable, because proceeding from and leading to himself, being incorruptible, surviving the ruins of the body and the ruins of time, and enduring eternally.
1Pe 3:5 For after this manner in the old time the holy women also, who trusted in God, adorned themselves, being in subjection unto their own husbands:
Adam Clarke's Commentary: This is the ornament appointed by God. To cut it off is an unnatural practice; and to exchange the hair which God has given for hair of some other colour, is an insult to the Creator. How the delicacy of the female character can stoop to the use of false hair?! The women who trust NOT in God are fond of dress and frippery; those who trust in God follow nature and common sense. It will rarely be found that women who are fond of dress, and extravagant in it, have any subjection to their husbands but what comes from mere necessity. Indeed, their dress, which they intend as an attractive to the eyes of others, is a sufficient proof that they have neither love nor respect for their own husbands. Let them who are concerned refute the charge.
1Ti 2:9 ¶ 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;
Adam Clarke’s Commentary: The apostle seems to refer here to different parts of the Grecian and Roman dress. The main dress, or stola seems to have been originally very simple. It was a long piece of cloth, doubled in the middle, and sewed up on both sides, leaving room only for the arms; at the top, a slit was made, through which the head passed. It hung down to the feet, both before and behind, and was girded with the belt round the body, just under the breasts. It was sometimes made with, sometimes without, sleeves; and, that it might sit the better, it was gathered on each shoulder with a band or buckle. Some of the Greek women wore them open on each side, from the bottom up above the knee, so as to discover a part of the thigh. These were termed, showers (discoverers) of the thigh; but it was, in general, only young girls or immodest women who wore them thus.
Then there was the mantle, which, being made nearly in the form of the stola, hung loosely over the stola, without being confined by the belt or girdle.
With shamefacedness and sobriety] The stola, mantle, girdle, &c., though simple in themselves, were often highly ornamented both with gold and precious stones; and, both among the Grecian and Roman women, the hair was often crisped and curled in the most variegated and complex manner. To this the apostle alludes when he says, Not with plaited hair, or gold, or pearls, or costly raiment. The costly raiment might refer to the materials out of which the raiment was made, and to the workmanship; the gold and pearls, to the ornaments on the raiment.
With shame-facedness or modesty, This would lead them to avoid every thing unbecoming(inappropriate or unacceptable; Oxford dictionary) or meretricious(seeming attractive but in fact having no real value; Oxford dictionary) in the mode or fashion of their dress.
With sobriety; Moderation would lead them to avoid all unnecessary expense. They might follow the custom or costume of the country as to the dress itself, but they must not imitate the extravagance of those who, through impurity or littleness of mind, decked themselves merely to attract the eye of admiration, or set in lying action the tongue of flattery.
I Tim 2:10 But (which becometh women professing godliness) with good works. Adam Clarke’s Commentary: Good works are the only ornaments with which women professing Christianity should seek to be adorned. The Jewish matrons were accustomed to cry to the bride: "There is no need of paint, no need of antimony, no need of braided hair; she herself is most beautiful."
Mt 5:28 But I say unto you, That whosoever looketh on a woman to lust after her hath committed adultery with her already in his heart.
Adam Clarke’s Commentary: If voluntary and deliberate looks and desires make adulterers and adulteresses, how many persons are there whose whole life is one continued crime! whose eyes being full of adultery, they cannot cease from sin, 2Pe 2:14.
No man that lusts will stand blameless but so will the temptress have the bigger part of it. The woman that causes the stumbling in the man is called an adulteress whether she believes it or not. Look at the words “hath committed adultery with her”. It includes her fully in the sinful act. This makes further sense on further examination looking at scripture involving those who cause others to stumble. A woman who dresses in lewdness does she not have fore play with every man that sees her whether she thinks about it this way or not. What she uncovers to others should belong only to her husband. It has nothing to do with other men. Oh, that women will turn from this accepted wickedness.
Mt 13:41 The Son of man shall send forth his angels, and they shall gather out of his kingdom all things that offend, and them which do iniquity;
42 And shall cast them into a furnace of fire: there shall be wailing and gnashing of teeth.
John Wesley's Notes on the Old and New Testaments:
V. 41. They shall gather all things that offend-Whatever had hindered or grieved the children of God; whatever things or persons had hindered the good seed which Christ had sown from taking root or bearing fruit. The Greek word is, All scandals. Jamieson-Fausset-Brown Commentary: all things that offend--all those who have proved a stumbling-block to others
Mt 13:30 "Let both grow together until the harvest: and in the time of harvest I will say to the reapers, Gather ye together first the tares, and bind them in bundles to burn them: but gather the wheat into my barn. "
The fruit of immodesty is like tares and cannot be gathered into God’s kingdom. This scripture refers to the enemy that plants his fruit in the church that bears the fruit of the world. When we let worldliness in the church in this case in the form of immodesty it is evident that it is the fruit of a tare. This should be a serious reprimand to every woman who sees the fruit of immodesty in their life. Lest you be found by the Master as a tare bearing the fruit of tares bringing the poison of immorality and lust into His church. Woe unto every woman involving herself in such wickedness. The last day will reveal you.
Spurgeon Devotional Commentary: The true character of men will develop itself in due season, and will be clearly seen at the last day. Angels will have no difficulty in discerning between sincere believers and mere formalists. Men may deceive the church today, and do it much mischief by creeping into it while they are unconverted; they ought, however, to tremble, for the hour comes in which the unquenchable fires of divine wrath will consume all pretenders.
Joh 16:13 “Howbeit when he, the Spirit of truth, is come, he will guide you into all truth: for he shall not speak of himself; but whatsoever he shall hear, that shall he speak: and he will shew you things to come.”
We have no excuse, at regeneration we are guided and led by the Holy Spirit if we regect His promptings to obey at once His leading towards purity, holiness and the character of Christ we grieve the Holy Spirit. Should we continue this action for a prolonged time we will later quench Him out of our lives and then stand the danger of turning apostate moving into the realm of the impardonable sin. At what point this happens I cannot tell but what a fearful place. How shall we play around with such things? It is always the case that at regeneration one of the things the Holy Spirit does is speak to every soul on the matter of purity and modesty and many more areas but when people do not grow in this area it is scary evidence of their fearful state of unwillingness to pay the price that always comes along with following Christ. The goat must be changed into the nature of a sheep. She cannot stay in the old character of a goat with goat behavior. Goats will be gathered on the left hand and are destined by Christ to be burned in the eternal unquenchable fire they never were part of the true church in the purity of modesty and much more than just that. Let us then take heed and watch carefully what fruit we bear. It is what reveals to us what we are. Should we find ourselves in the wrong we should cry out to God who is the savior of souls. And He saves us from every unclean habit we may still have that is still stuck in the world or worldly ways. Cry out for grace in this area.
So many brothers have communicated that it is such a blessing for them to be among their sisters in the faith and they do not have to struggle with their thoughts as to what they see. And all the faculties of their minds can be on the Lord’s things not having to be in battle being consistently reminded by the devil of the beauty of the female body. This should not be so for the brothers among the sisters wherever they meet. Why would we be used of the devil like fiery darts that the devil can shoot at our brothers to destroy them with the deadly poison of lust? Something that our bodies as women can easily produce when we are not properly clothed. It is enough that the brothers battle in the world. Why should we allow their battles to continue when they are in the midst of the body of Christ. The question comes up whether a woman that makes her brothers struggle is even part of the body of Christ since the devil managed to use you to take their purity away. And you are not giving them a place of rest and peace as a sister in the faith should.
What should a woman do with clothes that are in her closet that she suspects might cause men to stumble? You can’t give it away. Giving it away will cause others to do things that you are convicted is wrong. If you throw it away someone might pull it out again. The best thing to do is burn it. Gather it, make a fire and burn it. ASAP! About some things you may even feel sad and really sorry to get rid of it because you really liked it in the way it fit or looked. But if you should ignore the voice of the Holy Spirit you will quench Him. If you are in a process of growing in obedience to his voice. Obey His call towards being changed into the image of Christ and do not resist Him. Having His approval is far better than having the approval of the world. It may be a very lonely walk for some if you don’t have likeminded people around you. Bu tif you are faithful and continue being faithful you will gather around yourself a group of people who are likeminded towards the Lord. And how awesome that will be! May the Lord who saved you make your pursuit of Him sweet and fruitful!