Casual Dress

(This article was written months ago and I intended to run it last Saturday, the same day the Daily News ran "Megachurch adopting less casual approach to worship.")

An often run ad for an Interdenominational worship service on the beach begs for a response. The headline states: "Its OK to dress casual for Church, Jesus did." For sure, the attire at the time of Christ was different from ours, but the question to be answered is this: Are the words "casual" and "modest" synonymous? Another statement in the ad begs for a response. The statement, "Being comfortable with Jesus Christ starts with being comfortable," is definitely not a Biblical principle supported by the Holy Word of God. Actually, the very opposite is true. Being comfortable with Jesus begins with being uncomfortable with self. In Mark 5, the result of the demoniac's conversion was a changed man. In v15, they see "him that was possessed with the devil, and had the legion, sitting, and clothed, and in his right mind: and they were afraid." The modern day trend of making the world comfortable with Christianity is not Biblical. Not only is there a dumbing down of Christianity, there is a dressing down of Christianity in many so-called Churches.

Some restaurants have a higher dress standard than some Churches. We try to hold to Biblical standards of modesty here at Faith, and it is amazing how many times we are falsely accused of being "legalistic." Did Jesus tell the demoniac to put some clothes on? Why did he do it and where did he get the clothes? I doubt an Independent Baptist came up and said, "Now that you are saved, you need to put on some clothes." No, truth is, his new heart told him (2Cor. 5:17). Is it possible that the Holy Spirit will convict the heart of one person and not the heart of another?

How can a woman that claims to be Born Again put on a bikini and expose her body to others without conviction of the Holy Spirit? How can a man that claims to be Born Again look at that without being convicted by the Holy Spirit? That is an impossibility because there is a natural God-given attraction of male and female to each other that is normal and right within the boundaries of a normal relationship between a husband and wife. It is not normal and natural outside of marrige. How about this tough question: If is is okay to wear a bikini to a beach worship service, why not wear it to a regular Church service? God's standards do not change with the location. If it is okay in one place, it will be okay in the other. "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." 1Cor. 6:19-20

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