1 Timothy 2:9 Likewise, I want women to adorn themselves with proper clothing,
modestly and discreetly, not with braided hair and gold or pearls or costly garments;
NEW TESTAMENT PRINCIPLES
1 Timothy 2:9 Likewise, I want women to adorn themselves with proper clothing, modestly and discreetly, not with braided hair and gold or pearls or costly garments; but rather by means of good works, as befits women making a claim to godliness.
Proper (Grk. Kosmios)—orderly, virtuous, decent, modest, well-ordered
Clothing (Grk. Katastole)—primarily a garment let down; kata, down, stole, a loose, flowing outer garment; Therefore a woman’s garment is to be down, loose, and flowing; hence long dresses or skirts.
Modestly (Grk. Aidos)—shamefacedness, bashfulness
Discreetly (Grk. Sophrosune)—soundness of mind, self-restraint
It is important to note that the word katastole, used here by the Holy Spirit for clothing, is the only time it is used in our New Testament scriptures. There are other words that are commonly used for clothing that He could have chosen, but He did not. We must therefore conclude that He had a specific purpose in choosing this word above other common words. In the above verse, God is concerned about the dress of women, and that it is proper, modest, and discreet. It cannot be proper, modest, or discreet unless it is first katastole. It is down, loose, and flowing dresses or skirts that keep women’s bodies properly covered, or hidden, and reserved for their husband’s or future husband’s sight only. God does not want women to draw attention to themselves with tight, form-fitting, revealing, sheer, or low-cut clothing of any kind; neither does He want them to draw attention to themselves with showy adornment, such as, braided hair; gold and pearls; or costly garments. He wants them to be conservative, simple, and hidden; drawing attention to their good works done for the benefit of their family, the church, and the kingdom of God. These principles of dress are a bold contrast to our modern society which is in rebellion towards God, and cares nothing about His precepts and living a life that is pleasing in His sight. God tells us as believers, “do not be conformed to this world, but be transformed by the renewing of your mind, that you may prove what the will of God is, that which is good and acceptable and perfect” (Romans 12:2). The daughters of God should not be like the daughters of this world who are filled with sensuality, self-glory, pride, and arrogance in the way they dress. The Bible also tells us that friendship with the world is hostility toward God, and whoever wishes to be a friend of the world makes himself an enemy of God (James 4:4). We are to live the rest of the time in the flesh no longer for the lust of men, but for the will of God. For the time already past is sufficient for you to have carried out the desire of the Gentiles, having pursued a course of sensuality (1 Peter 4:2-3).
PUSHING THE EDGE ON DRESS STANDARDS:
BORDERLINE MODESTY VS TRUE MODESTY
by David Cloud
In my preaching conferences I have had occasions, sadly, to observe that though a church or Christian school might have pretty good dress standards (written or unwritten) for workers and youth, many girls and young women are dressed immodestly. I am not the only one to notice this. One pastor wrote the following:
“In 2006, I visited the campus of -------- Christian College and attended a chapel service. I was grieved as I watched the students assemble. Many of the girls were wearing tight, form fitting blouses and skirts. There were a lot of skirts above the knee as well as slits that went above the knee. One pastor friend refers to the slit as ‘peek-a-boo’ skirts. How can the young men possibly keep their minds pure as they train for the ministry when so many of the girls are dressing like strange women all around them?”
One lady wrote the following description of the fundamental Baptist church that she attends:
“The teenagers wear the skirts that come to the knee but when they bend over or sit down . . . well you know. Their tops are low cut with a v and look like they were painted on. My husband leads the music and he said he can’t even look at the people because there are so many short skirts, etc.”
One man wrote as follows:
“Our church teaches and preaches separation. Our pastor has even compiled a small booklet on modest dress. Having said all that, we have had and still do have problems. In order to be a choir member or teach Sunday school, etc., we must sign a form saying we agree to the dress standards as well as many other standards of conduct. What I have seen is, yes they are wearing dresses, but many are far from modest . . . form fitting clothing is one of the problems. A lady can be actually wearing a reasonably nice dress that meets the standard, at least in their mind it does, but the problem is that it is at least a size too small for her! These folks are rarely confronted because they are wearing a dress, you know! I believe we easily forget modesty and become lost in ‘I’m wearing a dress attitude.’ It shows either a lack of discernment on their part or a worldly desire to show off the body, maybe both.”
Another man described the same problem:
“I am thankful you are writing a book about dressing modestly. It is needed in this day and time when most fundamental independent Baptist Christians think that just as long as they wear a dress that comes below the knee, it’s appropriate.”
The problem in these situations is that the dresses might be long enough (when the woman is standing), they are still not modest because of the way they are cut or what happens to the clothing when the woman is involved with various activities. For one thing the dresses can be cut to low. Many men who wrote to me mentioned that this is a great distraction and temptation. But we must understand that modesty is much more than merely covering nakedness. That is just a baby step in modesty. The heart of the sensitive woman is truly aware of her influence in this world and seeks to be truly modest from every standpoint, caring nothing about merely “walking on the edge” of modesty.
One major problem is tight clothing. In our survey of Christian men on the issue of women’s dress we found that tight clothing is a least as much of a potential problem for men as skimpy clothing. Most of the men indicated that tight skirts and tight blouses and form-fitting jeans hold a “very great potential” for lust. One man said:
“You don’t even need to see skin; they provide all the curves.”
Another man said:
“I would say the number one problem is any garment that is form fitting, be it jeans, pants, skirt, dress, shirt, whatever. Anything that is tight, no matter how long it is, leaves nothing to the imagination, and that defeats the whole purpose of covering the skin in the first place!”
Another man said:
“One thing I see in my church is tight clothing. Oh, it may very well be covering, but it is revealing the shape of a woman. This can be even more tantalizing to a man.”
Another man wrote:
“The point is that it is not merely the type of clothing that can trip a man up; rather it is the amount and level of cling to the body.”
Thin clothing can also be a serious modesty issue. One man wrote:
“If a woman is standing so that light can shine through her skirt, although she may be covered with a garment, it is so transparent that everything is revealed. A woman can be covered, yet at the same time uncovered.”
There are many other ways to be “seductive” even in “modest” clothing. God, through the prophet Isaiah, rebuked women of that day not only because of what they wore, but also because of the countenance and because of how they carried themselves:
“Moreover the LORD saith, because the daughters of Zion are haughty, and walk with stretched forth necks and wanton eyes, walking and mincing as they go, and making a tinkling with their feet.” (Isaiah 3:16)
One man wrote:
“It’s not just clothing that can be inappropriate—also high heel shoes. They cause the hips to gyrate when the lady walks. The secular world told us this, so why is it in the church? Bright red nail varnish on fingernails and toenails, red lipstick, seamed stockings—that look from the ‘50s and ‘60s. [It screams out, ‘Look at ME!] It’s not always what the attire is but how it is worn and the woman herself. Excessive use of perfume and make-up—both designed to draw men; they should be used with wisdom. Also, flirtatious natures and wanting to be noticed by the opposite sex should be reigned in.”
The battleground, of course, as we have noted many times, is the heart. If a lady is worldly in her heart, she will probably not be modest even if fully clothed and she will constantly be looking for ways to push the boundaries of any clothing standards with the objective of being cool and perhaps showing herself off.
A pastor that operates a home for troubled young women wrote to me and said, “We have had girls come from homes and churches that hold to strict dress standards, but they carry themselves like strange women in modest clothing because it’s in their hearts!”
When women’s clothes are form-fitting and push the envelope of decency on every side, it is obvious that one of two things is happening. First, in many cases the objective is not really to be modest before the Lord, but rather simply to obey man’s rules and that only as long as necessary. That is a serious issue that is reflective either of an unregenerate heart or a backslidden one. It has been said that true character is demonstrated by what we do when no one is watching. Second, there are doubtless cases in which girls and women simply don’t understand how immodest they really are in the eyes of men. They are naively going along with the current fashion and with the crowd. If this is the case, the lady in question will be open to correction and will respond to plain preaching and teaching on this subject.
TRUE MODESTY REQUIRES EDUCATION
The females must not merely be given a dress code, but must be taught the Bible principles of modesty carefully and urged to apply them consistently. This won’t happen through a sermon or a Sunday school lesson every few years. It requires making female modesty a real emphasis in the church and developing a course of instruction that will educate the people properly, and in addition to that, mentioning it often in the preaching—teaching ministry of the church in a kind and patient way.
TRUE MODESTY REQUIRES EXAMPLE
It is crucial that the wives of the pastors, teachers, and deacons, and the older female church members understand the issue of modesty and that they are committed to it from the heart, applying the Bible’s principles consistently rather than just going by a couple of written rules. If there is a failure here, it will be reflected throughout the congregation. If the wives of church officers push the boundaries of modesty, if they are careless about their necklines, and if their dresses are to tight, and if fashion is more important than modesty, the church will never win this battle. Victory has to start at the top.
TRUE MODESTY REQUIRES EXHORTATION
Teaching is not enough; exhortation is also needed. The preacher is instructed to “reprove, rebuke, exhort” (2 Timothy 4:2). This goes beyond teaching. Reproving, rebuking, and exhorting are all necessary. God’s people have a sin nature that tends to backslide and go after the things of the flesh and of the world, and they must be reproved and exhorted to stay in the Lord’s narrow paths. This ministry of reproof is as much a necessary part of the pastor’s ministry as teaching. If he neglects it, he is compromising. Both the males and females of the congregation need to hear reproof on all areas of practical Christian living, and that certainly includes modest dress and separation from the world. Pastors who leave this out of their preaching will find that many things slip in the congregation because of the lack of plain reproof.
TRUE MODESTY REQUIRES CONSISTENCY IN THE PREACHERS’ CHILDREN
It is not enough for a pastor to preach modesty; his family must demonstrate it before the congregation, and that includes his children. I have known of many pastors who have injured their ministry by the lack of enforcement of biblical modesty in the lives of their own wives and daughters. I recall a church in Florida where the pastor was a strong preacher and a soul winner, as well as a compassionate man and a good example to the people in many ways. But his beautiful teenage daughter dressed indecently, and her poor example and her father’s acquiesce in the matter helped break down the separation from the world with the youth and many young lives were ruined by the love of the world.
TRUE MODESTY REQUIRES EDUCATED, CONCERNED MEN
It is necessary for Christian men to understand the issues of female modesty and to take a stand for it in their homes and to support it in the church. If the women are trying to be modest but the men are worldly, the men will put pressure on the women to be more “fashionable” and “less dowdy.”
TRUE MODESTY REQUIRES A WISE DRESS CODE
I believe strongly in Christian dress codes for Christian workers in this day and age, but the dress code must be thorough. It is not enough to say that the women must wear dresses rather than pants. It should describe all the important features of modest dress, that the neck line must not be low, that the clothing must not be tight, that it must be long enough so that the leg is covered properly, that it must not be clingy, that it must not be sheer, etc. The issue needs to be spelled out plainly. The dress standard is not only a code; it is a teaching tool to continually educate the people on this matter. Of course, if a girl or woman is worldly in her heart she will still look for ways to push the boundaries of the standards regardless of how clear they are, but that is a separate problem altogether.
[This article is from the author’s book, “Dressing for the Lord,” which is available from Way of Life Literature. www.wayofllife.org]
CLOTHING IS A LANGUAGE
By David Cloud
It is important to understand that clothing is a language. It is a “social message,” a fashion “statement.” The knowledge of this is what drives the fashion industry, and the child of God needs to understand it, as well. I need to ask myself what message is my clothing broadcasting? Wikipedia defines fashion as “a prevailing mode of expression.” It acknowledges that “every article of clothing carries a cultural and social meaning” and observes that “humans must know the code in order to recognize the message transmitted.”
George Harrison of the Beatles, who rebelled against the way his father wanted him to act and dress, testified: “Going in for flash clothes, or at least trying to be a bit different was part of the rebelling. I never cared for authority (Hunter Davies, The Beatles, p. 39). Note that Harrisons flash clothing and non-conformity was intimately associated with his rebellion.
Mary Quant, the designer generally credited with inventing the mini-skirt in the mid-1960s, admitted that her aim was to entice men and promote licentiousness. She wanted something “daring” and “controversial,” which refers to pushing moral boundaries, something sexually immodest. It was regarded as a “symbol of liberation.” Some European countries banned the mini-skirt, saying it was an invitation to rape (Mary Quant, interview with Alison Adburgham, The Guardian, October 10, 1967). Quant also promoted a short hairstyle for women. Her fashions were statements and her clothing was a language.
Vivienne Westwood, who helped create the rock punk look, said, “I think fashion is the strongest form of communication there is. It’s only interesting to me if it’s subversive: that’s the only reason I’m in fashion, to destroy the word ‘conformity’” (Jon Savage, Time Travel: Pop, Media and Sexuality 1976-96, p. 119).
David Kidd once posed the following question to a young college girl who was inquiring about his family’s conservative dress: “If you are shopping and see a girl in a long, loose fitting dress, what is your first impression of her?” Without any hesitation she answered “that she is probably religious.” He concluded, “It behooves us to recognize that our manner of dress is a statement that either reflects or contradicts our Christian purpose” (The Fall and Rise of Christian Standards, p. 154).
Hairstyles are also statements. Long hair on men and short hair on women are not merely harmless fashions, a mere sign of the times, but are statements of rebellion against God’s created order (1 Corinthians 11:14-15).
The androgynous unisex image is not innocent. It was created by rock musicians who intended to overthrow tradition. One of the rock songs of the 1960s called upon young men to grow their hair long and “let your freak flag show.” David Lee Roth of Van Halen testified: “[My long hair] is a flag. It’s Tarzan. I’ll always be anti-establishment” (cited by John Makujina, Measuring the Music, p. 73).
Dennis Wilson of the Beach Boys sported long hair and popularized the “surfer cut” in the early 1960s. Commenting on the significance of this hair length, Wilson biographer observes: “The ‘surfer cut,’ as it came to be known, was a radical thing to behold in 1962. Few parents would permit their sons to sport the look” (Jon Stebbins, Dennis Wilson: The Real Beach Boy, p. 24). Dennis Wilson was a rebel and his appearance was merely a reflection of this. Observe, too, that the “surfer cut” was not that long compared to the long hair that came afterwards, but it was just long enough to be a bold statement of non-conformity. Small fashion changes can have large consequences.
Paul McCartney of the Beatles flippantly acknowledged their role in overthrowing sexual distinctions: “There they were in America, all getting house-trained for adulthood with their indisputable principle of life—short hair equals men, long hair equals women. Well, we got rid of that small convention for them. And a few others, too” (Barbara Ehrenreich, “Beatlemania: Girls Just Wanted to Have Fun,” cited by Lisa Lewis, The Adoring Audience: Fan Culture and Popular Media, p. 102).
Where did the “small convention” of “short hair equals men, long hair equals women” come from? Why was this an “indisputable principle of life” in the 1960s? The answer is that America, because of its vast number of churches, had been influenced by the Bible in these things. It was Bible principles that the Beatles ridiculed and sought to overthrow.
Referring to the denim jean market in the 21st century, the website fashionera.com observes that this market “is status ridden and has coded tribal signs and signals with its not so subtle stitching, logos, tabs, decorative pockets, shading and distressing.”
Abercrombie & Fitch, the clothing company that markets “edgy” clothing features loose sexuality, is “best known for its rebellious attitude” (“Flip-Flops, Torn Jeans, and Control,“ Business Week, May 30, 2005). Thus even the world recognizes the message of Abercrombie & Fitch clothing. They don’t merely sell clothing; they sell an attitude via a certain style of clothing.
In “The World according to Abercrombie and Fitch, David Seel observed: “Successful brands in America don’t sell products, they sell lifestyles” (Critique, 2000).
Therefore, clothing styles are not innocent. Each style preaches a message. Pantsuits preach the feminist’s message of equality of the sexes. Tight fitting, low cut, short and skimpy styles preach the world’s message of loose sexuality. Ripped jeans preach a cheap affectation of poverty, of “I don’t care” and thus slovenliness, and of moral casualness. Slit skirts preach the message of sexual flirtation. God’s people must beware of sending the wrong message with their clothing. We must understand that the clothing industry is not in submission to God and cares nothing about submitting to His word. It doesn’t do to say, “Well, my tight, ripped jeans don’t preach that message to me.” The important point is not what message the clothing preaches to any particular individual who wears it, but what message it preaches in the context of its history and in the context of society at large and to those who are forced to look at it.
[This article is also from the author’s book, “Dressing for the Lord,” which is available from Way of Life Literature. www.wayofllife.org]
WHEN AND WHY WOMEN STARTED WEARING PANTS IN AMERICA
by Chet Schmear
edited by Soul Winners Bible Church
IN GOD WE TRUST
America is a country uniquely founded on Christian biblical principles. If you ask people here in America, "Is there any outer clothing that is strictly women's clothing?" The majority (even non-Christians) would answer that dresses and skirts are definitely and strictly women's clothing. If, on the other hand, you would ask those same people this question, "What is strictly men's outer clothing?" What do you think they would answer? One hundred years ago the answer would have been obvious, but today they would have no answer. Today there is no outer clothing that is considered to be strictly menswear. All hats, jackets, jeans, slacks, suits, and coveralls are worn with regularity by women. You'll even see women in baseball, basketball, football, police and armed forces uniforms.
Does God's Word give any direction on the distinction of men's and women's clothing? Deut. 22:5 says, "A woman shall not wear man's clothing, nor shall a man put on a woman's clothing. For whoever does these things is an abomination to the Lord your God." This verse gives us the following information:
1.) There is, or should be, a distinction between men's and women's clothing.
2.) One shouldn't wear clothes that belong to the opposite gender.
3.) Cross-dressing is not a wise thing to do; God calls it an abomination!
"Abomination" is a very strong word used to describe such things in the Bible as homosexuality, idolatry, unjust weights and measures, false balances, haughty eyes, a lying tongue, hands that shed innocent blood, a heart that devises wicked plans, feet that run rapidly to evil, a false witness who utters lies, and one who spreads strife among brothers.
It is very important that we understand clearly what God is teaching us in Deut. 22:5. This law is neither civil nor ceremonial, but moral! And we know that the moral law stands forever. Certainly God would not condone wearing clothes of the opposite gender in any dispensation.
Matthew 5:18-19 “For truly I say to you, until heaven and earth pass away, not the smallest letter or stroke shall pass from the Law until all is accomplished. Whoever then annuls one of the least of these commandments, and teaches others to do the same, shall be called least in the kingdom of heaven; but whoever keeps and teaches them, he shall be called great in the kingdom of heaven.
Romans 7:25 “Thanks be to God through Jesus Christ our Lord! So then, on the one hand I myself with my mind am serving the law of God, but on the other, with my flesh the law of sin.”
Romans 8:4 “in order that the requirement of the Law might be fulfilled in us, who do not walk according to the flesh, but according to the Spirit.”
1 Timothy 1:8 "But we know that the Law is good, if one uses it lawfully . . .”
God has a very strong desire for His people to have their clothing gender- correct. Being gender-correct is not peculiar to just clothing. God wants us to be gender-correct with our hair length (1 Cor. 11:15,16), our sexual orientation (Gen. 2:21-24;Rom. 1:26-28), and in the role we fulfill in the family (Eph. 5:22-33). Although most fundamental Christians would have no problem agreeing with being gender-correct sexually, they really struggle with the clothing issue, which is just as Biblical, and the violation just as disgusting to God. Some Christians have never been exposed to this truth. Others, who struggle with this issue and find it hard to comprehend, may be those who have been hardened for many years by the world and the teaching of compromised pastors, churches, and seminaries. One hundred years ago everyone in America agreed that pants were menswear, even the women who may have been wearing them. History records that was exactly the reason they were wearing them – because of the very fact that they were men's wear!
WHO WEARS THE PANTS?
The following sources show clearly that even secular historians saw what was happening but did not understand these violations of God's principles of dress and male authority:
Have a Nice Day, A Dictionary of Clichés, by Christine Ammer (Dutton Press, 1992), 402 – "wear the pants." To be boss. This term was long applied to women, particularly wives, who assumed the domineering household role that was believed to belong to the husband. It dates from a time when only men wore pants or breeches and women wore skirts exclusively, at least in the Western world. Times have changed since the sixteenth century, yet although women's apparel has included both short and long pants for many decades [tens of years], the phrase still means to assume authority that is properly masculine. It reflects, of course, an indelibly sexist attitude.
Dictionary of Slang & Unconventional English, by Eric Partridge (Macmillan, 1984), 1313 – "wear the breeches." (Of women) to usurp a husband's authority, be 'boss'. From ca. 1550, though the idea is clearly indicated in 15th century Colloquialism until ca. 1700.
Slang and its Analogues, by J. S. Farmer and W. E. Henley (Arno Press, 1970), 324 – "Breeches" To Wear the Breeches, phr. (common). – A phrase said only of women; and signifying to rule; to usurp a husband's prerogative; to be 'master.' An analogous phrase is 'the gray mare is the better horse of the two.' [The derivation is obviously an allusion to breeches as the symbol of authority, i.e., of manhood.] Murray traces the expression back to1553, but it is, in reality, much older. It is found in French as early as 1450.
Female Persuasion – Six Strong-minded Women, by Margaret F. Thorp (Archon Books, 1971), p.128 (emphasis added) – To printed ridicule she was also happily blind but against the serious opponents of dress reform she went stoutly to battle. The most dangerous attacks she had to meet were theological. The awful divines, accustomed to silencing women with texts from St. Paul, now withdrew to Deuteronomy 22:5:"the woman shall not wear that which pertaineth unto a man." Mrs. Bloomer, who had long since thought her way out of the theological thicket around women's sphere, countered with Genesis. "There are laws of fashion in dress [she wrote in a long review of an anti-Bloomer sermon] older than Moses, and it would be as sensible for the preacher to direct us to them as to him. The first fashion we have any record of was set us by Adam and Eve, and we are not told that there was any difference in the styles worn by them. "And they sewed fig leaves together, and made themselves aprons:" then Genesis, III, 7. nothing here to show his apron was bifurcated, and hers not, that hers was long and his short. We are led to suppose that they were just alike." (note: Bloomer fails to explain that God was not pleased with their clothing, Gen. 3:21, nor do we travel backward from the Law to the Garden to discover His plan for governing our lives.)
. . . some of the Lily's subscribers also had moral scruples about wearing the bloomer, but they were of a different color. A group of "old ladies" wrote to inquire whether it would harm the cause if women of fifty or sixty adopted the costume. Mrs. Bloomer's reply was characteristic. "Do just as your impulses move you to do. What you find a burden in belief or apparel, cast off. Women have always sacrificed her comfort to fashion. You old women of sixty have been slaves to the tyrant long enough, and as you have but a few years to live, be as free and as happy as you can with what time remains. Fit yourselves for a higher sphere and cease groveling in the dirt. Let there be no stain of earth upon your soul or apparel."
From the book American Beauty, by Lois W. Banner (A. A. Knopf, 1983), p.94 (emphasis added) – we have the following information: Conservative Mrs. L. Abell thought that dresses should not drag in the mud and that skirts should hang from shoulder suspenders to relieve pressure on hips and back. But she was vehemently opposed to the bloomer dress, citing God's command in Deuteronomy that the sexes ought not wear each other’s clothing: "the Bible is against bloomers."
. . . Indeed, in the years after its appearance, the bloomer dress became popularly identified not only with women's rights advocates, but also with other radicalisms. Particularly noticeable were the free-love advocates who wore variations of it, not only at Oneida, whose members kept to themselves, but also at the small, activist communities around New York City. Free-love, with its overtones of sexual promiscuity, was among the most reviled ideologies in Victorian America, and newspapers like the anti-feminist New York Herald, regularly identified free love with feminism, particularly since free-love advocates often appeared on women's rights platforms to proselytize for their cause. The identification was furthered by the embarrassing disclosure that prostitutes inside New York brothels often wore a costume resembling bloomer dress.
The critics of the bloomer costume were especially outraged by the trousers that were part of it. The dress that covered the upper part of the body was of a standard simple design, shortened to mid-calf. The trousers, however, were a striking departure from customary women's costume. The belief that trousers were meant only for male attire had been strong in Western culture for centuries, and its venerable nature was underscored by the Biblical prohibition in Deuteronomy against women wearing trousers.
. . . By the nineteenth century the doctrine of separate sexual spheres leant additional authority to the canon, strengthened by trousers' symbolic role in establishing masculine identity and dresses establishing female identity. "We believe in the petticoat as an institution older and more sacred than the Magna Carta," declared Harpees Magazine in an 1857 article that decried women's subservient economic position and advocated moderate women's rights goals.
. . . Cady Stanton's father, mortified at her adoption of bloomer dress, wrote that she had made a 'guy' of herself. The New York Herald found the attempt to introduce pantaloons for women so outrageous that it predicted the bloomer women would soon "end their career in the lunatic asylum, or perchance in the state prison."
". . . Pants are allied to power," asserted dress reformer Mary Tillotson. So strong was the identification of trousers with masculinity that not until the early nineteenth century had women worn divided undergarments, in the form of "drawers," as they were called. Long pantaloons as undergarments had a brief vogue in the first decade of the century, but the opposition to them on the grounds of their resemblance to male trousers was so strong that they had disappeared by the 1820's, surviving only as attire among dancers and prostitutes and in the form of the pantalettes that young girls continued to wear as a way of covering legs under short dresses. Thus, pantaloons were highly suspect, and even drawers were not universally accepted. Catherine Beecher, for one, remembered that in her youth in the 1810's and 1820's she had worn nothing but petticoats under her outer garments. One dress reformer speculated that the major problem with the bloomer was that it brought into plain view a garment women had only recently begun to wear as underclothing.
From Ballots to Breadlines, Sarah Jane Deutsch (Oxford University Press, 1994), p.13 (emphasis added). This book shows a photograph of three women, all with short hair, white shirts with ties, and trousers, sitting on an automobile. The caption under the picture reads, "Three women prepared for a trip to California. The independent 'new women' of the 1920's felt free not just to shorten their skirts, but to abandon them. For the first time many women, like men, wore trousers."
The first issue of the newspaper, The Woman Rebel, published by Margaret Sanger in March, 1914, was unapologetic in its radical aims and its frank discussion of birth control. Its aim was, "to build up a conscious fighting character" in its readers. Margaret Sanger, who is best known as the founder of today's "Planned Parenthood" was also an advocate of women wearing men's clothing, which she considered "the right to ignore fashions." She referred to motherhood as slavery, was pro-prostitution, and believed that the woman had the "right to keep her own name." Her ideology was made very clear in the full title of her newspaper:
"The Woman Rebel; No Gods—No masters"
THE ANDROGYNOUS STRAIN
ANDROGYNOUS: Being neither distinguishably masculine nor feminine, as in dress, appearance, or behavior; unisex . . . . One secular author sums it up in this manner:
Men and Women – Dressing the Part, by Claudia Brush Kidwell and Valerie Steele, (Smithsonian Institution Press, 1989), p.158 (emphasis added) – We began with three basic questions. How does fashion express gender? What does it mean when gender conventions change or are challenged? And does the existence of gendered dress imply the existence of sexual inequality? Much of this book has addressed the first question, examining dress in a variety of settings: cross culturally, in children's clothing, as an erotic stimulus, in the workplace, and in sports. The process of changing gender symbols has dominated the last two chapters. Within each chapter, an answer to the third question has been elusive. But looking over the finished work, we find that not only has truly androgynous dress never existed for adult men and women, but the closest we have ever come to androgyny is for women to dress like men.
Like all sin, the cross dressing problem has always existed, but it was in the early 1900's in America when women's cross dressing gained popularity. This was due to the acceptance of the "women's lib" ideology and the rejection of Biblical principles. Women, in their quest to be "equal" to the man, started wearing their hair like a man, dressing like a man, working like a man, and doing everything to achieve, in their mind, this "equality". Today, almost a century later, men's clothes have been so absorbed into women's fashion, that there is not one outer garment that is considered to be distinctly male, not even one! Do you really think God is pleased with this situation today in the light of Deut. 22:5?
PANTS ARE MENSWEAR
In Biblical times men would "gird their loins" for action. This meant either pulling a leather strap attached to the back of their belts (girdle) up between their legs and securing it in the front, or bunching up the material of their tunic or garment and pulling it to the front and tucking it in the belt (girdle). This would split or "breech" the garment into "breeches," and early form of trousers or pants. In time the garments were split and stitched for the men, removing the need of the girdle (belt or strap) and thus the "breeches" of today. A godly woman, of course, would not have exposed her legs and the separation between them in this manner. This practice, accepted by Christianity for 1900 years, is virtually gone. Remember, in our nation, one hundred years ago, everyone agreed that pants were menswear, even the women who may have been wearing them. Shall we thank the God-hating feminists for enlightening us?
Ephesians 5:9-10 “(for the fruit of the light consists in all goodness and righteousness and truth), trying to learn what is pleasing to the Lord.”
Colossians 1:10 “so that you may walk in a manner worthy of the Lord, to please Him in all respects, bearing fruit in every good work and increasing in the knowledge of God;”