Wednesday, June 29, 2011

A Biblical Approach To Addressing Immodesty In The Church

Marth Peace author of "The Excellent Wife" answers a question about addressing immodesty within the church. I thought her advice was filled with grace yet biblical.

Q: We have several teenage girls in our church who dress immodestly in church and away from church. It bothers me and I'm not sure if I should say anything or not.

A: Girls and women who dress immodestly are either naive and foolish (as to the effect they are having on men), or they are "harlots in their heart" and know full well the effect they are having on men. Either way, if you are the witness, you need to try in love to help them.

If they are older teens or adults, I would approach them privately (Galatians 6:1 and Matthew 18:15) and explain that they are immodest in dress. Use Scripture such as 1 Timothy 2:9-10. Don't get caught up in a discussion of "how tight?" or "how long should the skirt be?" This is a heart's attitude and you don't want to make a lot of rules for them to follow. You want them to glorify God and honor Him in how they dress. Exhort them to repent and give God glory. Be very kind in your tone of voice but very clear with your examples.

If it is a younger teen dressing immodestly, I would go to her mother and tell what I had noticed and my concern. Don't gossip about this to others. If she doesn't repent, then bring in two or more witnesses (Matthew 18:16). And if she doesn't repent, then go to the elders in your church. That's all you can do except, of course, to continue to pray.

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