Modest is Hottest; it’s also true in hell.
What will you be wearing on the day of judgment? Scantily-clad or not, we could be in for a surprise. The Bible tells us that on the last day there will be many seemingly good people, who in all likelihood dressed quite modestly, to whom Jesus will say, “I never knew you; depart from me, you workers of lawlessness” (Matthew 7:23).
These individuals will be DEVESTATED because they thought they were GOOD. After all, they were covered in good deeds.
They were covered in humble dress: one-piece bathing suits, tankinis, and shorts to their knees,
They were fully-clothed in church attendance, giving to the poor, and a near flawless morality.
Wearing a one-piece or not, these individuals may soon find themselves swimming in the wrath of God for all of eternity.
How shockingly scary. This verse ought to shake our souls out of slumber and compel us to cry out for those trusting in their own goodness for salvation. We must examine our own fragile estate and make sure we are resting on the perfect righteousness of Jesus Christ and not our own triumphs.
To the religious crowd who was trusting in their own morality for salvation, Jesus said, “For you are like whitewashed tombs, which outwardly appear beautiful, but within are full of dead people’s bones and uncleanness.” (Matthew 23:27)
Looks can be deceiving. We can look wholesome and clean on the outside, and yet our hearts can be a million miles from God.
Heaven is not a place for good girls – prudes properly celebrating each other’s goodness for all of eternity. On the contrary, heaven is a place for those who have realized they are completely jacked up and in desperate need of being saved from their own goodness. Jesus looked through the swimsuit we were wearing and saw deep into a soul that was plagued with sin. He didn’t come for the healthy and the modest, He came for the sick and vile.
Christianity is not about wearing a bikini or one-piece. Our hope is only found in wearing the righteousness of Christ – a garment none of us deserve or have merited.
If you have not read part one of The Swimsuit Edition: God Loves The Hoochie Mama, click here to jump in the conversation.
Let’s continue to walk through the process of deciding what to wear this summer.
Does it cause another to stumble?
More specifically, does wearing a Bikini cause others to stumble. Yes, of course it does. Victoria’s Secret created an empire off of lust. Frankly, it’s difficult to see how some bathing suits are that much different from panties and push-up bras. One might say, “It’s okay because we are at a beach.” But does lust go on a vacation at the beach? Umm . . . no. I would argue lust is very much hot and heavy on the shorelines and at the local pools. Lust has no regard for context or culture. Men and women are sinful at beaches, pools, kitchens, shopping centers, America, Spain, France (in nudist colonies), strip clubs, and church pews.
What causes us to lust? Is it leggings, cleavage, short skirts, bathing suits, smoldering Latin accents, handle bar mustaches or chiseled abs?
Sin causes us to lust. We are all sinners who lust, and we are all in need of Jesus.
We would find a way to lust even if everyone was covered in burlap from head to toe. All of a sudden necks and earlobes would be the new sexy.
As Christian women, sometimes we simply say, “It’s my body. I can do what I want.” But again, it’s actually not our body; it’s His body. Our bodies were purchased with a price – the price of the Son of God (1 Cor. 6:20).
Other times we’ll say, “Well, men are going to lust no matter what I wear, so why does it matter? It’s not my problem, it’s their problem.” Well, maybe that’s true, but does that mean it would be wise to dangle a crack-pipe in front of a drug addict, and just tell them to “man up” and gain some self-control? Of course not. Sometimes we make decisions not based upon what we have the freedom to do, but based upon what is in the best and most loving interest of those around us. Jesus calls us to love our neighbor as our self. If what we are wearing will in a unique and obvious kind of way likely cause our neighbor to stumble into sin, are we loving them (as Jesus commanded)?
Side note: I am convinced that many times women are choosing what outfit to wear in order to impress other women. We are just as bad as men when it comes to checking each other out…I’ve seen it and I am sure you have too…A woman walks into a room and she is devoured from head to toe by other women! We can cause one another to struggle with lust(non-sexually) by stirring up insecurities of the soul. I wonder how many eating disorders, depression, anxiety, anger, and fear are birthed from seeing other women half dressed.
Can we help one another lust less?
What it really comes down to is that when we become Christians, it is no longer about our body, it becomes about being a part of HIS body – the church.
It is no longer about good tan lines and getting attention. Our lives becomes one in which we die to ourselves, considering others in the body of Christ. We exists for one another.
Our brothers and sisters have told us that dressing immodestly causes them to lust, and when our family is hurting (or struggling), we should be hurting. To love a brother in Christ isn’t to tell him just to get a grip on his lust. To love a brother in Christ is to sacrificially and selflessly go out of our ways to guard and protect him the sin that so easily besets him. They struggle enough as it is; let’s not do anything to complicate the matter. Are guys going to struggle with lust regardless? Yes, probably. Yet God forbid that we be the reason for them to fall into sin. Jesus said in such a case, “Whoever causes one of these little ones who believe in me to sin, it would be better for him if a great millstone were hung around his neck and he were thrown into the sea.”
The bikini was named after an atomic bomb. I wonder if it sets off an explosion of lust in the souls of others.
I often hear women say, “Well my husband is ok with what I am wearing.”
Husband, I am sure you love seeing your wife naked (you should and I hope you do often) but encourage her to save that sexiness for your eyes only. Don’t allow other men to take visuals of your wife into the bedroom with them at night to play in the rolodex of their minds.
To be honest, my passion for helping our brothers has grown tremendously since having sons. OH. MY.
I did not have any brothers growing up so I was in shocked to discover how entirely different boys are from girls. Fixated on anatomy…just saying.
I want my boys to be great lovers one day when they are married. I want them to be naked and unashamed with their wives. I want my kids to have fantastic sex lives. This comes through understanding who God has created them to be and the boundaries that He lovingly sets up for his children.
Yes, I want their eyes on Christ, but this is so hard because there are so many shiny things everywhere begging for their attention.
One of those things is beautiful women. High schoolers running in bra-tops, virtually every commercial they see on television, and even their sister’s Barbie dolls . . . they are all asking my boys to glance their way and stay awhile. So we tell them to “bounce” their heads when they see something inappropriate, but sometimes you can just about get whiplash trying to avoid sin.
I want to fight for their eyes, but I realize that the battle is not for the eyes; it is for the heart.
Women are to be treasured, respected, honored, and valued. Yet the media tells them women are for sex and merely objects to be used.
Women also can make this exact same statement with their clothing.
What should our take away be?
This posts asks the question, “What should Christian women be wearing at the beach this summer?”
“It is for freedom Christ has set us free; stand firm therefore, and do not submit again to a yoke of slavery.” (Gal 5:1)
“But He rescued us to be free, so why are you trying to put the heavy yoke of a modest swimsuit on me?”
(I have a friend who compared a one piece bathing suit to a cocoon, in which a beautiful butterfly was trapped inside of.)
Do we say, “Let freedom ring, lets put on a string?”
We are free from the slavery of sin, not free to do whatever we want. We are freeto love God and to love others. We are free to be loved by God.
A woman who is covered by love is going to look different from the world.
Following Christ changes our talk, dress, eating . . . it changes everything!!!!
Sometimes loving looks more like dying. Before Christ we were white-knuckling our life – afraid to let go. Christ took our lives, and now it is not our own.
Christ set the example for love when He laid down His life for us. We are free to lay down our life for others. We are free to be servants laying down our lives for others and for the glory of God. We are free to be extend peace to parched eyes, but how can we show the peace of Christ when we are waging war on the eyes of others and fighting for their attention, groveling for their applause?
Finally, we are free to take it all off!
Let’s take it all off this summer! Take off all of our pride. Take off all of our selfishness. Less is more. Let’s clothe ourselves in humility, love, and respect. Let’s be a people that bear each others burdens, instead of baring it all.
Let’ bare our souls before the eyes of God, instead of our bodies for the praise of men and women.
We don’t dress modestly because we are ashamed of the bodies God has given us. We cover because of love.
How can we make this summer a selfless summer? Just remember you are choosing more than a swimsuit this summer.
There is no doubt this post will offend people that why it has taken me so long to write about this topic. My hope is that this will start a conversation that will challenge our thinking, making us hunger to love Christ and others more.
Christian, we should not be rolling our eyes at cleavage hanging out and huffing and puffing over short skirts. We should run to these women and welcome them into our homes because they are no different from us – just different struggles.
Let us clothe ourselves in humility summer.
Remember this ancient saying…… “Don’t hate the player, hate the game.”
Love covers a multitude of sins (I Peter 4:8).