Have Faith Ministries

Biblical Modesty

1Timothy 2: 1Ti 2:9 " 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; 10 But (which becometh women professing godliness) with good works."

Le 18:17 Thou shalt not uncover the nakedness of a woman and her daughter,

Modesty - what does it mean and what does the Bible say about it?

This is a very important question for every Christian to answer, because we all need to deal with it. Unfortunately, many Believers in the Lord Jesus Christ have chosen to simply adopt the World's standard for what is considered appropriate or modest clothing. However, we understand from Scripture, that God does not want His children conforming to the World's Standards and the World's Philosophies. So, when it comes to dress and clothing styles, we need God's word to show us what is and is not acceptable from God's Holy perspective.


First let's deal with a heart principle that Jesus discussed in 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." Let's not be blind to human nature! Yes man's sinful nature is attracted to lustful things. True, it's wrong to lust, but it is just as wrong to dress in such a way as to cause others to lust? That's why the apostle Paul says "that women adorn themselves in modest apparel." Of course it's not just the ladies that need to be modest. The men also need to be very careful about what they wear.

  Let's consider what is acceptable according to God's word:

  It's good to dress clean and neat for church meetings!

   Obviously at church work days you have to get a little dirty!

  It's good to wear clothing appropriate for the function:

  Really nice Clothes for Worship Service

  Wedding Clothes if you're going to a wedding, especially if you're the one getting married, by all means wear a fancy wedding gown or tux.

 Modest casual shorts and shirts at a church picnic.


 Now, let's consider what is NOT acceptable according to God's word:

 Revealing clothes that attempt to draw attention to yourself in a sexual way, that begins to reveal your "nakedness" , that will cause others to "lust" or "commit adultery" even in their imagination.

 Short's that are Too short, dresses that are too tight or too short

 Clothes that begin to reveal what should be covered, such as low necklines and skirts with slits up the side. Many young ladies have fallen to the trend of wearing spaghetti straps that don't cover their under garments. Don't be a temptress!

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

 Some young ladies (and men) will dress to look attractive, but they fail to use Biblical discreation as to what is honoring to God. Consider Proverbs 11:22, As a jewel of gold in a swine's snout, so is a fair woman which is without discretion.

  Guys you need to use biblical discretion as well! In the gym class and on the athletic field, tank tops may be appropriate, but not in church services and perhaps not even at casual events. * More to come for the guys

   God has given a special relationship for men and women to reveal their bodies to each other. That is the marriage relationship. Hebrews 13:4 "Marriage is honorable in all, and the bed undefiled: but whoremongers and adulterers God will judge."

   The harlot of Proverbs 7:10, intentionally dresses in such a way to lure men to her body in a sexual way. This is WRONG! We need to understand that in the setting of the Jewish culture in biblical times, much of the modern ladies clothing that we see today would be even more revealing than the harlot's clothing years ago. Has the nature of men changed? Absolutely not! What has changed is our culture's attitude towards God and His moral Standards and Principles.

   What should men and women see when they observe each other? Should they see someone trying to tempt and lure others or should they see "CHARACTER", godliness and clothing that represents inner godliness? For the Christian, this answer should be obvious!

 Things to ask yourself about specific clothing:

  Am I buying this because I want to look sexy? Don't buy it!

  Am I wearing this because I want him/her to look at me and want me in a sexual way? Don't wear it!

  Am I trying to draw attention to myself from those of the opposite gender by being immodest or even slightly immodest? Don't do it!

  Am I trying to be more like the world and less like Christ? You need to have a heart and attitude change! * Read Romans 12:1 & 2

"I beseech you therefore, brethren, by the mercies of God, that ye present your bodies a living sacrifice, holy, acceptable unto God, which is your reasonable service. And be not conformed to this world: but be ye transformed by the renewing of your mind, that ye may prove what is that good, and acceptable, and perfect, will of God."

Other passages to read:

Galatians 5:16 This I say then, Walk in the Spirit, and ye shall not fulfil the lust of the flesh.

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

When it comes to the clothing you wear, don't help someone else feed his or her flesh! Be careful what you wear.

You also need to care about others. God's word tells us a number of times not to set "stumbling blocks before our brethren."

1John 2:10 He that loveth his brother abideth in the light, and there is none occasion of stumbling in him.

Romans 14:21 It is good neither to eat flesh, nor to drink wine, nor any thing whereby thy brother stumbleth, or is offended, or is made weak.


 Key thoughts concerning Biblical Modesty:

  • Your clothing on the outside should represent godliness on the inside (see 1Tim. 2:9-10).

    Your clothing should not be a stumbling block for believers or unbelievers.

    Would you feel uncomfortable with what you're wearing or thinking of wearing if our Holy Lord Jesus were standing next to you?

    Would the older men & women in the church be offended at what you're wearing?


    Some Christians just don't care about others when it comes to modesty, but they are wrong biblically. They may cry out, "but what about my Christian Liberty?" Please turn your attention to what God says in Galatians and Romans:

    Galatians 5:13 For, brethren, ye have been called unto liberty; only use not liberty for an occasion to the flesh, but by love serve one another.

    Romans 13:14 But put ye on the Lord Jesus Christ, and make not provision for the flesh, to fulfill the lusts thereof.

     One last thought:

     When in doubt about a type of clothing fashion, ask one of the godly women or godly men in your church what they think (ladies ask ladies and men ask men).


    Other related articles:

    What about Dating?

    Fleeing Sexual Sins!

    The Battle for Purity!


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