We Are Radical

Bringing radical thoughts worth pondering (A blog of poriruachurch.com)

The Christian Woman and Modesty


“In like manner, that woman adorn themselves in modest apparel…” 1 Timothy 2:9.

What is modest apparel? The word translated “modest” (aidos) in this passage means:

  1. Having regard for others.
  2. That which would always restrain a good man of an unworthy act; and would sometimes restrain a bad man, and,
  3. Opposite to anything which would likely arouse or distract the thoughts of others.

(Thayer’s Greek-English Lexicon of the New Testament, p. 14)

It seems that no further labour of definition should be necessary for the prudent and consecrated Christian who wants to comply with biblical instruction.

Your Dress May Cause Others to Sin

Someone wrote, “The darkest chapter in King David’s life had for its introduction a woman who exposed her body for public viewing. Bathsheba still has many modern daughters who lead men to lust, sin, and finally to damnation.”

Parents, allow your daughters to grow up parading in scanty undress, and they will have no sense of propriety, shame, or embarrassment about publicly disrobing as adults. Neither will they learn how to deal with lust, sexuality, or Christian feminine influence. They will be thoroughly programmed in “going the way of all flesh.”

Is modesty required only for those past forty, wrinkled, infirm? Or is it biblically bound also upon the young and restless whom God has endowed with native beauty and charm? Do sunshine, warm weather or water automatically make God’s instruction void, and release the Christian from his or her obligation to total abstinence from immodesty (1 Tim. 2:9-10)?

However, If Modest, Your Dress May Point Others to God

If modesty is characteristic of “women professing godliness” (1 Tim. 2:10), it is axiomatic that those who dress immodestly are professing ungodliness. The word translated “profess” (epaggellomai) in this passage literally means that one has laid claim to, and has given herself out as an expert in the practice of Christianity, through public pronouncement of modest dress (Arndt-Gingrich Greek-English Lexicon of the New Testament, P. 280).

A good-hearted person can embrace a minimum of half a dozen passages of Scripture and present himself or herself for New Testament baptism; he or she has to embrace only this one passage to present himself or herself in proper Christian attire. More positive teaching at home and in Bible classes, and preaching from our pulpits on this, and related passages are imperative to produce proper public Christian decorum in this permissive generation.

The Christian’s case for total abstinence from immodesty can be opened and closed with this one passage. However, many other New Testament passages dealing with influence, purity and chastity support and strengthen it. God knew that our men and women could control the effectiveness and destiny of the church through their modest or immodest dress.

John P. Simpson, Enduring Words, Vol.2, Issue 4, April 1983


About Porirua Church

We are the Lord's church that meets in Porirua, New Zealand. Visit poriruachurch.com.


This entry was posted on 15/04/1983 by in Bible Study, Christian Living.
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