pants

Discussion in '2006 Archive' started by underscoretim, Sep 22, 2006.

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  1. underscoretim

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    A church i went to when i was younger forbade women wearing pants...
    Is this a popular belief among ifb's?
     
  2. Squire Robertsson

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    While many take a very dim view of women wearing pants, only a few go so far as to outright ban them for women's wear. And there are a goodly number for whom the topic is a non-issue.
     
  3. Mexdeaf

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    It depends on what her father or husband says. If she is of age and unmarried she can answer for herself.
     
  4. FBCPastorsWife

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    It is an issue to varying degrees among IFBs. I don't wear pants at all (home, church or public)...only dresses and skirts. Now, the women in our church, most of them wear dress and skirts to church. We have a select few that the only thing they own is pants. We have no problem with that. Especially if the person is lost. I can't stand when a lost person walk into an IFB church and they are shunned because of their dress. One thing my husband always says about lost people that enter our church doors, "Instead of shoving standards down their throats they first need our Saviour."

    The church building that we acquired was also an IFB church several years ago. The pastor was an absolute tyrant. He would stand at the door and tell women to go home and put on something appropriate if they were wearing pants. That is a common question we get now simply because we are in that building.
     
  5. Bro Tony

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    Do pants become inappropriate wear for those who are saved? If they do according to what biblical standard is this decided? Remember all pants are not men's pants so the OT statement about men or women wearing the others clothing is not the issue. So in the NT where does it say that saved women should not wear pants? If it does not say it then are we not involved in legalism? This is not an attack, just some thoughts to ponder.

    Bro Tony
     
  6. James_Newman

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    I think there are a number of good reasons why women should go back to dressing like women. But each man will have to make up his own mind about how his family dresses. As for legalism, I don't think having a standard of dress is legalism, unless you are using it as a yardstick for measuring salvation. And some may indeed do this. But you can't throw out good standards just because some people don't understand the gospel, can you?
     
  7. Bro Tony

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    Well I agree that there are biblical standards, I also believe that women ought to dress like women. There are slacks that are designed and made for women, that no one would assume that the she is not dressing lady-like or modestly. The question is not slacks or skirt the question is modesty and gender appropriate clothing.

    I would also add to your legalism standard not just using it as a measuring stick for salvation, but also using it as a measuring stick for one's spiritual maturity or standing. Legalism does both.

    Bro Tony
     
  8. Brother Bob

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    The question didn't come out of "the great blue yonder", must be a problem at some churches and maybe all at one time. I remember when it was an issue just to wear them to school, much less to church.
     
  9. tinytim

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    I hate to be the one to nit-pick here, and I really don't think you meant this to sound like it sounds, but this is why some consider it to be a legalistic issue...

    Saved = wears dresses
    Lost = wears pants.

    Maybe some would never admit it, but I think subconsciously, this is how so many feel......That once a person gets saved they should wear dresses, or skirts, and if they don't they were never saved, or are not as spiritual as those who do.

    I understand standards, and respect standards.. we all have them, but to look down on someone, and to assign pants to only lost people can be consider legalistic.

    I really didn't want to offend anyone, but I felt like I should point this out.
     
  10. Grasshopper

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    Then once they are saved, some start shoving the standars down their throats.
     
  11. FBCPastorsWife

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    Just answering your first question...I say yes but let me explain my answer. When I got saved I had the immediate conviction that I should not wear pants...I should only wear modest skirts and dresses. That is simply ME. I know not everyone has that conviction and I will not look down on them for that. I do believe that once a person gets saved there is an outward change as well within...some being more noticeable than others.

    As far as you saying that there are women's pants and men's pants...hmmm.... I will agree that there are slacks that are made for women. Here is what I see wrong with it. Pants paint lines and show the figure of a woman. There are certain things that a man's eyes should not be drawn to and I believe that pants do this. This is especially the case with some pants that females try to wear that look like they were poured into them...and yes, Christians do wear these and they do wear them to church. It doesn't matter whether or not they were made for a lady in my opinion. I think a lady should simply want to look more like a lady.
     
  12. FBCPastorsWife

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    Ok...now let me address this one. You are right...I did not mean it to sound like it reads. It is very hard to put into words what one is thinking. Especially since I know that I will most likely get nailed for whatever I say since I am the miss IFB skirt wearing type.

    Nevertheless, I kind of tried to explain what I meant in my previous answer. My best friend is also a pastor's wife of an IFB church in a neighboring city. She only wears her skirts and dresses to church and church functions. When she is at home or goes about town she puts on her pants. Not once have I ever criticized her for it either. I also down use it as a means to judge her salvation. I know some people who would use it as a way to judge but like I said earlier I simply have the conviction to wear the skirts all the time. Until God changes my heart that's how I will be.

    Maybe this explained it a little more of what I was trying to say. Please let me know if I should explain further. Not by any means do I want people to think that I would judge a lady (or their salvation) because they were wearing pants. That's just not me.
     
  13. Bro Tony

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    As to your first paragraph. I totally respect your personal conviction for yourself. I don't see it as legalism because you feel convicted to wear a dress or skirt only.

    As to the second paragraph. I don't think it matters whether we are talking pants, dresses or skirts. I have seen each one worn to church that showed off a women's form. It is not the pants or the skirt that is the problem it is women who believe that it is appropriate to wear clothing that is less than modest. That being said, unless a woman wears a burka, it is impossible for her not to show that she is a woman because of her form. The form of a woman is not a dirty thing, but at the same time there must be modesty, whether one sears a dress, skirt or slacks.

    Bro Tony
     
  14. FBCPastorsWife

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    Bro. Tony, I understand what you are saying. You are right when you say that woman's form is not a dirty thing but, I believe a woman's form (and the details of it) is intended only for the man she is married to. I try very hard to buy things that do not show the details of curves. But yet again... that's just me.
     
  15. Brother Bob

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    Don't know how true this is?

    . It is hard to believe that as recently as a century ago it was a misdemeanor for a person to wear clothes not “of their sex.” California did not make it legal for women to wear pants to the work place until 1995!
     
  16. paidagogos

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    The rest of the story




    Bro. Tony, you have trotted out the same old tired arguments about the trousers on women. It’s pure, unadulterated pabulum. There are answers but it is simply a matter of whether you want to accept them. No, there is not a “Women, thou shalt not wear slacks” commandment but there are the applications of certain principles. However, your acceptance or refusal to accept has nothing to do with the validity of this conviction for other people. Furthermore, what Scriptural basis do you have for forcing those who have a conviction against pants on women to accept them?

    The basic issue is a matter of personal conviction. People who believe that women ought not wear pants have a right to teach and practice their conviction. It is also right and proper that they associate themselves together in a local church with other people of the same convictions. It is wrong for any woman who has doubts or convictions against slacks to wear them because she sins against her own conscience and convictions. Furthermore, it is Scripturally wrong for other Christian women (not the unsaved), who may not hold this conviction, to attend that church in slacks (I Corinthians 8:9-13, Romans 14:19-23). This encourages other women, especially the girls and young women, to violate their convictions and the teachings of the local church. Also, it may encourage rebellion against the standards of their husbands or fathers. If you’re going to attend that church, then curb your desires and respect their standards and convictions. God didn’t send you there to change them.

    Aside from the personal conviction angle, there are many possible objections to women wearing pants. At one time, it was a modesty issue. Slacks revealed the roundness of the buttocks and the branching of the legs from the body trunk whereas a skirt or dress covered these features. Of course, there was the question of tight-fitting too. I know the proponents say that loose-fitting slacks are modest but I very seldom see loose-fitting slacks on even Christian women. Most fits defy the incompressibility of solid matter principle (i.e. you cannot fit something larger into a smaller container). We have gone so far in our society and dress that no one considers this any longer. The problem is that even so-called Christian young women are revealing their bodies in ways today that were only done by disreputable women a generation ago. Has modesty changed its standard?

    The matter of immodesty among professedly Christian young women was the topic of a call-in radio talk show produced by Focus on the Family. I listened to it while traveling one night in my automobile. The host was a young woman who was decrying the immodesty of reputedly Christian women. She was saying that we have slipped too far in our standards of modesty so that Christians are indistinguishable from the unsaved. I was in complete agreement until one young lady called in who had come to a conviction against wearing pants. She testified that she had worn slacks until she was convicted by the Holy Spirit and gave up wearing pants. She had committed herself to dressing modestly in dresses and skirts as a testimony and witness for her Saviour. The woman host jumped on her case with both feet. She ranted: “Oh, honey, you’re going too far. You don’t have to give up wearing pants.” (What right as a Christian did she have to dissuade the girl’s conviction and to encourage the young girl to violate her beliefs?) Then she said: “Oh, I couldn’t do that—I couldn’t give up my jeans—I just couldn’t live without my blue jeans!” BINGO! Now, it’s a question of submission! Would she be willing to give up her jeans if Scripture mandated it?

    Additionally, there is a matter of gender differentiation. This is a good and proper way to establish the difference between male and female. I know, I know—there are some differences between some women’s slacks and men’s trousers. However, I’ve seen trousers on both men and women that appeared to be made for the opposite gender—men’s slacks without belt loops and back pockets or women’s slacks with belt loops and back pockets. Also, boys and girls buy their jeans off the same rack. So, what’s the difference? It may sound good in theory but in practice there ain’t no difference!

    BTW, what do you think of guys wearing dresses and skirts (not kilts)? There is a men’s dress shop in Chicago with business suits, just like women’s, with skirts for men. Some fashion conscious twerps say this trend will take over. You can apply every argument here that you applied for women wearing pants. Are you willing to accept it?

    IMHO, we have a gender identity crisis even in Christian circles. Men and women are failing in their Scripturally defined roles. This has much influence on broken homes, undisciplined children and rampant homosexual behavior. These problems originate in the sinful heart but they are exacerbated by a thousand and one little incidental nudges from our environment. The first step was in WWII when women began wearing pants and working outside the home. We have traveled a long way since then.

    Finally, the legalism argument is pure twaddle. To wear or not to wear pants has nothing to do with salvation. Most women, who don’t wear slacks, do so in submission to their father or husband and to please the Lord. They view it as an act of obedience and submission to authority in dressing modestly, in presenting a Christian testimony to the world and in differentiating between the genders.

    If you don’t like or accept my arguments, that’s fine. I won’t browbeat you. However, please don’t try to force your beliefs on others. Too often I find the pro-pants crowd trying to change the no-pants crowd. You have no right to dissuade other Christians from their convictions without strong Scriptural support. They may have as much Scriptural backing as you do.

    I am willing to hear your response. What do you think?
     
    #16 paidagogos, Sep 22, 2006
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  17. paidagogos

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    What is legalism?



    Legalism is usually defined by Paul's argument in the Epistle to the Galatians. What is your Scriptural support for this addendum to the definition? Dress is an observable behavior. How do we discern one's spirituality? By behavior? Can a woman who dresses exclusively in a feminine and modest dress or skirt be seen as one who is submissive, humble and modest? Does not her attire suggest something of her attitude and spirit?
     
    #17 paidagogos, Sep 22, 2006
    Last edited by a moderator: Sep 22, 2006
  18. paidagogos

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    Followup

    In my two previous posts of this thread, I came on rather strongly. Please accept my sincere word that there is no rancor in either post. I was debating an idea, not attacking the person whose post I challenged.

    I was trying to defend an idea that receives much ridicule on blogs and boards. IMHO, it is only fair to hear both sides.
     
  19. Eil

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    Hello,

    I too am not trying to attack or make personal remarks, but just to discuss this issue.

    From my experience, it is normally the dresses only crowd who are doing the attacking. While I have seen some rather venomous attacks on those who chose to wear only dresses these are comparatively far and few in between and are normally directed not so much at those who are merely following their conviction to wear dresses, but at those who are actively teaching that it is a sin against God to wear pants.

    The term 'legalism' may sometimes be used to refer to a variety of behaviors. IT is normally used to refer to adding additional requirements for salvation unto the work of Christ, but i believe it can also rightfully be used to refer to the practice of some to add additional commands that God has not stated in the bible as being mandatory for christians.

    Hence for someone to want to press his or her preferences onto other Christians is certainly wrong, whether or not you want to call that legalism or some other word.

    To the extent that the bible never condemns pants for women, those who teach that it is wrong for women to wear pants are going beyond scripture. If we start with the presumption that the bible nowhere condemns pants on women, I believe Christians, no matter how strongly they feel about the subject ought not to prevent those who disagree with them from joining their church. What right does a church have to exclude those Christians who disagree with them on matters not specified in the bible from joining their fellowship? If a group of Christians agree on everything else regarding doctrine and practice, are they going to separate from each other based on something like pants on women?

    I know that Christian liberty is perhaps the most abused idea in the bible, but it is still taught in scripture nonetheless. A healthy view of Christian liberty will mean that in those areas that God has not commanded, Christians will not be afraid or feel threatened by those who disagree. Hence if a Christian feels convicted to wear only dresses, she ought not to feel threatened by those in the church who chose to wear pants. No matter how much she disagrees with their choice, if she cannot prove from the bible that pants are sin she ought to accept that another Christian is making a different choice from her and let it rest. Likewise, the woman who believes it is ok to wear pants should not feel threatened by those who are convicted not to. She ought to let them practice their own convictions just like she practices hers. And the same logic applies equally to men who hold various views on the subject. If a man feels strongly that his wife/daughters should only wear dresses, he should lovingly teach them why he feels this way and use his God given authority in gentle way if needed. But simply because it would make it easier for him if everyone in the church thought as he thought, that does not give him the right to impose extra-biblical standards on others.

    I guess what I am saying is that on this subject in particular, so many are willing and eager to press their preferences or opinions on others saying ‘this would obviously be better for the church etc’. If the bible does not say it, I don’t think it is ‘obvious’ at all.

    Regarding the idea of modesty, I do believe there can be a modest pair of pants for women. I am not sure that showing the ‘form’ ie :I can see she has two legs” is necessarily immodest so long as the pants are not tight. I do agree though that the majority of women’s pants today do not meet this standard of modesty though.

    Finally, regarding the idea of differentiation between the sexes, I have always felt that there is absolutely no way to prove that pants are inherently ‘men’s apparel’. It is true that they originated as men’s wear but insofar as something is not commanded by God, its use can change with the culture. No matter how much we may dislike it, the fact is that our current culture sees pants as a garment that can pertain equally to both men and women. To the extent that God never says pants are only a man’s garment, I do not see how Christians can say such a change is sinful. It is true that God ordained breeches as part of the ceremonial attire for his priests in Israel, but I do not see how that is relevant to proving what men and women can or cannot wear under in the new testament in daily life. Also, those who condemn pants often accuse their opponents of treating the laws against cross dressing etc as being cultural but aren’t they the ones who are reading culture into the bible by assuming that the bible includes their cultural presuppositions that pants are only for men?

    Just my thoughts. I have absolutely nothing against anyone who wants to practice their convictions regarding this matter. But I do feel strongly that those who make this an issue of sin or holiness are going beyond the bible.
     
  20. Brother Bob

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    I am not agreeing or condemning but would like to make a statement concerning pants for women.
    Twenty or Thirty years ago at any funeral service you would never see a woman or even a child in pants. Today over half of the gathering women have on pants. It does not seem to concern them at all. What I am saying is that society itself condemned pants on women just a few years ago. If any of you here have some age on you then I think you will have to agree that society itself has changed and forced the church to deal with whether it is acceptable or not. As I previously posted on here, I remember when it became a big issue for girls to wear pants to High School. Now, it is common to see both boys and girls with shorts on and some with short shorts. Nobody can tell me that this dress code is just as modest as it used to be. Whether its ok with God, well depends on whether it brings lust into the picture or not. I have some in our church that wear pants and they do have to be subjected to the "looks" of those other sisters who do not believe in it. Change is something that takes a lot of time to come about and for us to say on here one way or the other is not going to change the fact that we still are going through a change for women to either wear or not wear pants. If time lasts it will be a non-issue. peace,
     
    #20 Brother Bob, Sep 22, 2006
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