by Mary Van Nattan
Although there are other things that could be covered, we will move on to a couple of passages in Exodus. Here we find another facet of God's dress standard.
Exodus 28:42 And thou shalt make them linen breeches to cover their nakedness; from the loins even unto the thighs they shall reach: 43 And they shall be upon Aaron, and upon his sons, when they come in unto the tabernacle of the congregation, or when they come near unto the altar to minister in the holy place; that they bear not iniquity, and die: it shall be a statute for ever unto him and his seed after him.
Now, it has been pointed out that in the Bible, the only place breeches are mentioned is in assobliption with men. This is true, but overlabouring that point can cause us to miss God's point. Some people also will get side tracked at this verse and emphasize the need for modesty between the waist and the knee on a woman to the exclusion of all other modesty. It's rather disheartening to read or hear a good testimony on wearing dresses and skirts and then see the woman or her daughters with necklines that they have to keep pulling and tugging to keep up, or to see them painted up like their going to an Indian piano covers dance.
First of all, we learn that God wants the body covered from the loins to the thigh. That means to the knee, basically. This was even when they had their robes on. Now, we are not going to start a campaign that Christian women must wear coverings on their thighs under their dresses at all times, but this does bring up an interesting and needful point.
In the old days, girls wore a pantaloon-type garment under their petticoats which covered their nakedness until they were old enough to behave modestly and/or to wear longer dresses. They also wore stockings in many cases. Some people start dressing their little girls in modest apparel from infancy, and this is right and good, but there is often little or no effort to see to it that their nakedness is covered should their dresses come up, as is common with little girls. I wish someone had thought of this in the Christian school I once attended. There were times when the girls were just plain immodest with nothing under their skirts to cover their naked legs. One lady I know puts bloomers on her little girl under her dresses, and that is to be commended. The outpiano coversd robes are important, but God wants the nakedness covered too!
I remember hearing one preacher boast that neither pants nor coulots had ever touched the legs of his younger daughters. In a sense this is good, but on the other hand, one can't help but wonder if there were times that his little girls' nakedness showed because of this proud "standard". Our calling in the matter of dress is not to "never let pants touch" our legs, it is to cover our nakedness, and sometimes that means putting a covering on the legs under the skirts and dresses. If someone decides that the covering is "pants" and condemns us as ungoldy, that is their problem. We answer to God and live by His words. Romans 14:12 So then every one of us shall give account of himself to God.
This kind of boasting also sets the little girls up for pride in their imagined superior "purity." They can easily think that somehow they are more holy and better in the sight of God than girls and women that once wore pants, etc. This is wicked and, it misses the point of modesty being from the heart. Once we confess our sin of wearing immodest clothes; whether pants, dresses, swimsuits, shorts, etc. and repent of it; God forgets it! Why should we be held as less righteous than someone who never did it? 1John 1:9 If we confess our sins, he is faithful and just to forgive us our sins, and to cleanse us from all unrighteousness. Psalm103:12 As far as the east is from the west, so far hath he removed our transgressions from us. Isaiah 43:25 I, even I, am he that blotteth out thy transgressions for mine own sake, and will not remember thy sins. If God does not remember our sins, what right does someone else have to hold them against us? Obviously they have no business doing so! Immodesty in not an impardonable sin. The blood of Jesus Christ is not weak there. We can be cleansed from it, and there are many women that have turned their hearts topiano coversd God in this matter and been forgiven. I am one of them and thank God for it!
This attitude topiano coversd women that ever wore pants, etc. is an example of the traditions of man (Mark 7:13) that are held up instead of the high calling of God set forth in His word. It is Nicolaitan (nico = above, laity = the people) because it raises one group up and puts down another as unalterably deficient. To them, we are to always be reminded of this and left to feel guilty and not quite right no matter how far we have come. This is WICKED! God hates the deeds of the Nicolaitans! If you are being made to feel this way, please reject it, and don't allow it any more. Revelation 2:6 But this thou hast, that thou hatest the deeds of the Nicolaitans, which I also hate.
Exodus 20:26 Neither shalt thou go up by steps unto mine altar, that thy nakedness be not discovered thereon. Here we see the other side of this matter. God didn't want the priests going up steps to His alter which would put them in a position for their nakedness to show. So, we see that God wanted their legs covered under their robes, and He did not want them doing things that would expose their nakedness in other ways.
What does all of this mean? Basically this, God wants nakedness covered and He doesn't want people doing things that will expose their nakedness. Little girls that have not learned to keep their skirts down or are still crawling should have something on their legs to keep their nakedness from showing. If you live in a windy place where even a heavy skirt is not enough, you may need to pin your skirt together between your legs to be keep your skirt from blowing up. (I have tried this and it worked great.) Another possibility is to make adult-size pantaloons similar to those for a little girl. If you have to work in the garden, get a skirt long enough to bend over in and still be modest. If you have to ride a horse, make yourself a split skirt (not skimpy coulots) that will be modest while doing so. (A friend of mine made some for her sister, and they looked great and worked out well.)
Now, some woman who has gotten her liberty from the devil will doubtless be asking, "What's so wrong with pants? I have the liberty to wear them if I want. You can't tell me what to do," etc. Well, you are right that I can't tell you what to do, but I can tell you what the Bible says, and you will answer to God for what you do with that. Contrary to John Calvin, you have a free will and must choose for yourself. God won't make you do what's right, He leaves you the choice to you. Joshua 24:15 And if it seem evil unto you to serve the LORD, choose you this day whom ye will serve...
This is where we finally get to Deuteronomy 22:5. Some of you were getting a little anxious, weren't you? :-)
graphics by mary vannatan