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Personal Dress and Apparel



First, it should be noticed that many followers of Christ have gone far beyond what Scripture teaches regarding dress, while others have not taught what the Scripture does teach regarding dress. That being said, there are no gray areas with God. God is always leading. If we are not listening and obeying, we are sinning. Righteousness is the opposite of sin, and it always follows the same process. God leads and we follow. God leads in the details of our lives in every moment. There is never a time when He is not leading. We are always either obeying or not. There are no gray areas.

Second: If Christ-followers were truly listening to Christ and following Him rather than listening to the culture or their own minds and following the the wide road that leads to destruction, Christ-followers would, in many cases, be making drastically different choices from the choices that they are actually making.

Deuteronomy 4:2 Ye shall not add to the word which I command you, neither shall ye diminish ought from it, that ye may keep the commandments of the LORD your God which I command you.

Many Scriptures refer to the fact that our actions (including the way that we dress) have an impact on others and can actually hurt other people.  If we do things that hurt others, this is not love.

Romans 13:14 But put on the Lord Jesus Christ, and make no provision for the flesh, to fulfill its lusts

Romans 14:21 it is good neither to eat meat nor drink wine nor do anything by which your brother stumbles or is offended or is made weak

Romans 14:23 says, "But he who doubts is condemned if he eats, because he does not eat from faith; for whatever is not from faith is sin - teaches that if someone has doubts about something, even if it is lawful they sin if they do it because they go against their conscience

Galatians 5:13  For you, brethren, have been called to liberty; only do not use liberty as an opportunity for the flesh, but through love serve one another.

1 Corinthians 10:23-24, 31-33: All things are lawful for me, but all things are not expedient: all things are lawful for me, but all things edify not. Let no man seek his own, but every man another's wealth. [Do what helps your fellow man]... Whether therefore ye eat, or drink, or whatsoever ye do, do all to the glory of God. Give none offense, neither to the Jews, nor to the Gentiles, nor to the church of God: Even as I please all men in all things, not seeking mine own profit, but the profit of many, that they may be saved.

Matthew 5:28 But I say to you that whoever looks at a woman to lust for her has already committed adultery with her in his heart.

Ephesians 4:22~24 That you put off concerning the former whole manner of life the old man, which is corrupt according to the deceitful lusts; And be renewed in the spirit of your mind;  And that you put on the new man, which after God is created in righteousness and true holiness.

Colossians 3: 8-10 But now you also put off all these; anger, wrath, malice, blasphemy, filthy communication out of your mouth. Lie not one to another, seeing that you have put off the old man with his deeds; And have put on the new man, which is renewed in knowledge after the image of Him Who created him:  

1 Samuel 16:7 But THE EXISTENT ONE  said to Samuel, Look not on his countenance, or on the height of his stature; because I have refused him: for THE EXISTENT ONE  does not see as man sees; for man looks on the outward appearance, but THE EXISTENT ONE  looks on the heart.

1 John 2:16 For all that is in the world -- the lust of the flesh, the lust of the eyes, and the pride of life -- is not of the Father but is of the world.

Matthew 5:14-16 you are the light of the ordered system. A city that is set on a hill cannot be hidden.  Neither do men light a candle, and put it under a bushel, but on a candlestick; and it gives light to all that are in the house.  Let your light so shine before men, that they may see your good works, and glorify your Father which is in heaven.

Works (including how we dress) are a gift from God.  All righteousness (that which is not sin) begins with God leading and giving us of His faith (the gift of supernatural belief), and this must be followed by God's grace (charis) doing His works through us as we submit to Him.  When you bought the clothes, are you really convinced in your mind that God led you to buy them?  For people who are under the government of the home, it must be remembered that God set that government.  If your mother or father commands you in a certain way regarding your dress, or anything else for that matter, you are hearing God's voice.  We are to discern the body of Christ.  The family is the basic unit of that body.  If we discern correctly, we don't know anyone after the flesh but after the Spirit.  We see the ministry in each person as distinct from the fleshly nature of the person.  God set the parent.  Disobedience against parents is disobedience against God.  There are very few exceptions to this.  When you hear Christ speaking to you through a member of the body of Christ who has authority over you, then God's faith comes to you.  God's faith gives you access to His grace and His grace does His works through you.  This is what transfigures you into His likeness.

1 Corinthians 6:9 Know you not that the unrighteous shall not inherit the kingdom of God? Be not deceived: neither fornicators, nor idolaters, nor adulterers, nor effeminate, nor abusers of themselves with mankind,


1 Corinthians 6:19 What? Know you not that your body is the temple of the Holy Ghost which is in you, which you have of God, and you are not your own?

1 Thessalonians 5:22 Abstain from all appearance of evil.  

1 Corinthians 10:31 Whether therefore you eat, or drink, or whatever you do, do all into the glory of God.

Colossians 3:20  Children, obey your parents in all things: for this is well pleasing to the Lord.

When God speaks to you through Scripture, He is leading you.  When you hear His voice in this way, His faith comes so long as you will receive it.  The same is true when the Holy Spirit warns you in your inner thoughts--He speaks to you a warning or a leading.  God speaks to every person all the time---whoever will listen.  When He speaks, His faith comes.  Faith cometh by hearing and hearing by the word (utterance) of God.  His faith gives you access to His grace.  His grace does His works through you.  His works, when they work through you as you yield to the Holy Spirit, are righteousness.  Everything else is sin.  Take careful note that trying to obey by the law constitutes self-effort.  It is not blessed.  When God speaks to you and then does His works through you, you fulfill the law, but not by self effort.  You walk in the Spirit.  More about walking in the Spirit
(some caveats about hearing God's Voice)

Galatians 3:2-3 This only would I learn of you, Received you the Spirit by the works of the law, or by the hearing of supernatural belief?  Are you so foolish? Having begun in the Spirit, are you now made  complete  by the flesh?

Galatians 3:10-13 For as many as are of the works of the law are under the curse: for it is written, Cursed is everyone who continues not in all things which are written in the book of the law to do them.  But that no man is justified by the law in the sight of God, it is evident: for, The just shall live by supernatural belief.  And the law is not of supernatural belief: but, The man that does them shall live in them.  Christ has redeemed us from the curse of the law, being made a curse for us: for it is written, Cursed is everyone who hangs on a tree:  

Romans 14:23 And he who doubts is judged worthy of correction if he eat, because he eats not of faith: for whatever is not of faith (supernatural belief) is sin.

With the specific directions that follow, consider the fact that God, Himself, is speaking to you through the Scripture.  What is God saying to you through the Scriptures given below?  Note that much of the instruction is given to women but the basic principles behind the instructions would apply equally well toward men.

Leviticus 19:26 you shall not eat anything with the blood: neither shall you use enchantment, nor observe times. you shall not round the corners of your heads, neither shall you mar the corners of your beard. you shall not make any cuttings in your flesh for the dead, nor print any tattoo marks upon you: I am THE EXISTENT ONE. [note: eating food with blood in it was confirmed in the New Testament. The other commands listed here were behaviors associated with idolatry of the day. Beards, in today's society, seem to be accepted, but sometimes are a communication of rebellion or personal pride or trying to fit in with the ungodly culture of the day. Tattoos are more likely a communication of rebellion, pride, becoming a friend of the world, or even loose morals. Search your heart--your mind--to know what your motivation is. To grow a beard or to cut it in a certain way--to get a tattoo or not--did God tell you to do it? Are you totally convinced in your mind that this is God's will for you? What do your parents say? God speaks through them, especially before you are married--God set them over you. What do the elders (If you are fortunate enough to be following the order of Scripture) of your Church say? If you have some other form of government in your local assembly, what do those who have been set over your local assembly say? God speaks through those whom He has set]

A woman shall not wear a man's garment, nor shall a man put on a woman's cloak, ufor whoever does these things is an abomination to the Lord your God.

Romans 12:2 And don't be conformed to this eon: but be transfigured by the renewing of your mind, that you may test what is that good, and well-pleasing, and complete, will of God.

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

1 Peter 3:1-4 1 Likewise, you wives, be in subjection to your own husbands; that, if any obey not the utterance, they also may without the utterance be won by the whole manner of life of the wives;  While they see your chaste manner of life coupled with reverence.  Whose orderly preparation, let it not be that outward adorning of plaiting the hair, and of wearing of gold, or of putting on of apparel;   But let it be the hidden person 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.

Dueteronomy 22:5 A woman shall not wear anything that pertains to a man, nor shall a man put on a woman's garment, for all who do so are an abomination to the LORD your God

Isaiah 3:16-26 Moreover THE EXISTENT ONE  says, Because the daughters of Zion are haughty, and walk with stretched forth necks and flirtatious wanton eyes, walking and skipping [02952 taphaph] as they go, and making the noise of jingling ornaments with their feet:  Therefore the Lord will smite with a scab the crown of the head of the daughters of Zion, and THE EXISTENT ONE  will discover their secret parts. In that day the Lord will take away the bravery of their tinkling ornaments about their feet, and their hair nets, and their round tires like the moon, The chains, and the bracelets, and the mufflers, The bonnets, and the ornaments of the legs, and the headbands, and the tablets, and the earrings, The rings, and nose jewels, The changeable suits of apparel, and the mantles, and the wimples, and the crisping pins, The glasses, and the fine linen, and the hoods, and the veils. And it shall come to pass, that instead of sweet smell there shall be stink; and instead of a belt an encircling rope; and instead of well set hair baldness; and instead of an expensive robe, a belt of sackcloth; and burning instead of beauty. your men shall fall by the sword, and your mighty in the war. And her gates shall lament and mourn; and she being desolate shall sit upon the ground.

Revelation  2:20 Notwithstanding I have a few things against you, because you allow that woman Jezebel, which calls herself a prophetess, to teach and to seduce my slaves to commit fornication, and to eat things sacrificed to idols.  

4105 πλαναω planao plan-ah'-o
from 4106; TDNT-6:228,857; {See TDNT 635} v
AV-deceive 24, err 6, go astray 5, seduce 2, wander 1, be out of the way 1; 39
1) to cause to stray, to lead astray, lead aside from the right way
1a) to go astray, wander, roam about
2) metaph.
2a) to lead away from the truth, to lead into error, to deceive
2b) to be led into error
2c) to be led aside from the path of virtue, to go astray, sin
2d) to sever or fall away from the truth
2d1) of heretics
2e) to be led away into error and sin

Revelation 17:4 4 And the woman was arrayed in purple and scarlet color, and decked with gold and precious stones and pearls, having a golden cup in her hand full of abominations and filthiness of her fornication

Revelation 19:7-8 7 Let us be glad and rejoice, and give honor to Him: for the marriage of the Lamb has come, and his wife has made herself ready.  And to her was granted that she should be arrayed in fine linen, clean and white: for the fine linen is the righteousness of saints.

Exodus 33:4-5 And when the people heard these evil tidings, they mourned: and no man did put on him his ornaments. For THE EXISTENT ONE  had said to Moses, Say to the children of Israel, you are a stiff-necked people: I will come up into the midst of you in a moment, and consume you; therefore now put off your ornaments from you, that I may know what to do to you.

Genesis 35:2-4 Then Jacob said to his household, and to all that were with him, Put away the strange gods that are among you, and be clean, and change your garments:  And let us arise, and go up to Bethel; and I will make there an altar to God, who answered me in the day of my distress, and was with me in the way which I went.  And they gave to Jacob all the strange gods which were in their hand, and all their earrings which were in their ears; and Jacob hid them under the oak which was by Shechem.

Genesis 41:38-42 And Pharaoh said to his slaves, Can we find such a one as this is, a man in whom the Spirit of God is?  And Pharaoh said to Joseph, Forasmuch as God has showed you all this, there is none so discreet and wise as you are:  You shall be over my house, and according to your word all my people shall be ruled: only in the throne will I be greater than you.
41 And Pharaoh said to Joseph, See, I have set you over all the land of Egypt.  And Pharaoh took off his ring from his hand, and put it upon Joseph's hand, and arrayed him in vestures of fine linen, and put a gold chain about his neck;

Jeremiah 22:24 As I live, says THE EXISTENT ONE, though Coniah the son of Jehoiakim king of Judah were the signet [a ring] upon my right hand, yet would I pluck you from there;

Esther 3:10-12  And the king took his ring from his hand, and gave it to Haman the son of Hammedatha the Agagite, the Jews' enemy.  And the king said to Haman, The silver is given to you, the people also, to do with them as it seems good to you.  Then were the king's scribes called on the thirteenth day of the first month, and there was written according to all that Haman had commanded to the king's lieutenants, and to the governors that were over every province, and to the rulers of every people of every province according to the writing, and to every people after their language; in the name of king Ahasuerus was it written, and sealed with the king's ring.

Luke 15:21-22 And the son said to him, Father, I have sinned against heaven, and in your sight, and am no more worthy to be called your son.  But the father said to his slaves, Bring forth the best robe, and put it on him; and put a ring on his hand, and shoes on his feet:

Proverbs 7:10  And, behold, there met him a woman with the attire of an harlot, and subtil of heart.

Last updated: Feb, 2013
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