How Should Christians and Pastors Dress For Church?
walking to this episode of real Christianity my name is Dale Partridge retweet I offer 15 to 20-minute answers to tough theological and pastoral question this show is 100% listener supported audio Ministry of relearn. Org and for those who don't know our mission a trailer. Work is to bring the church back to the Bible for bold daily encouragement join me over 500,000 Christians who follow us on social media you just do that by searching relearn. Org on any platform
 alright we're going to talk in about dress or clothing in the church and in the west we have been dressing down for several decades casual culture has infiltrated society and the vast majority of Christians have followed suit no pun intended as some men on a Sunday I've seen wear sandals and tank tops to church in the summer and women wearing mini skirts or even leggings as pants to church and this trend from formal attire to casual attire really began in the 1960s as a reaction to the stalwart view of the Orthodox Christian church and in an effort to attract more visitors you know the church began stripping anyting quote churchy from the Gathering and replaced it with something less historical and more consistent with the modern culture I think about hymns were replaced with the you know rock bands and the
 hope it was replaced with you know the conference stage and we you know obviously changed from Suits and Sunday's best to you know giant wide neck t-shirt and some you know holy jeans but you know what does the Bible say about dress in church is there any principles for modifying our outward appearance to reflect our inward reverence should their clothing be a tool to distinguish themselves or dignify themselves in the role that they're in as an overseer or should they use clothing as a way to make themselves more relatable to their congregations to be talkin about all of this and more about before we dive in it's going to make one quick announcement
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 and the need to not wear t-shirts with worldly phrases printed on them in many ways it can feel like our church especially the young people are trying harder to fit in with the world then they are trying to look different from it I know the Bible doesn't specifically teach or speak on how to dress at church but do you have any principle that may be helpful for me as a pastor thank you Franklin this is a really good question I actually think that many pastors and and many mature Christians in churches probably struggle with this issue depending on the type of church that you're a part of the vast majority of today's churches are plagued with casual culture now again as you stated in your question the Bible does it speak directly to what people are to wear at church and that's true now that the Bible does it speak about the principles of modesty prudent reverence I respect
 play some of these things in 1st Timothy 2 1st Peter 3:4 and 6 Romans 12 Justice idea of not conforming to the world but actually being set apart and I caring about the way that you look being respectable be modest etcetera when we talked about dress with Christians I often hear people say hey you know what what I wear to church doesn't matter because God knows my heart and either they might even try to justify their position by reciting 1st Samuel 16:7 read that the man looks on the outward appearance but the Lord looks on the heart but what they missed when they say that passage of scripture is that the man looks at the outward appearance that that's that's the reality is that man does look at the outward appearance yes God does look at the heart and that's something we're not going to neglect as we talked about that today but man does look at the outward appearance and regardless of how you view it the way you dress does affect the way that you are perceived in this world and in the
 if you don't believe me just try walking into a grocery store wearing you know your long underwear and a purple pillow case with some holes in the put on his shirt and I promise you that people will view you a different lengths of the truth is the culture you live in wherever you're out in the world has parameters and boundaries that Define what is acceptable or unacceptable regarding clothing or dress any person who knows anything about history can see that culture is working diligently right now diligently to make what was historically unacceptable the norm and this is why what historical women would only wear in front of their husbands they now wear to the gym and to the grocery store and this is also why what historical man would wear to the factory they now won't even wear at a wedding and so Franklin because you're the shepherd
 of these young people is young adults and the biblical examples of the flock that the that the Lord has entrusted to you I believe that this change in dress will actually need to be started or nauseated with you and I think your example combined with faithful preaching on this issue loving faithful Ministry I think combined will be an effective strategy for influencing your people toward a more respectful and Reverend commitment to dressing appropriately now I'm going to answer this question that you've represented here by the bay really speaking to how I believe you as a pastor Franklin should dress and it's also the convictions that I have upon myself and how I dress as a pastor and then I'll close with a word to church members regarding trust and so like all Christians pastors are ambassadors for Christ right we are ambassadors of Christ
 we are his servants are you know servants not greater than his master right we are his servants we are his representatives in the world so first and foremost our character needs to be reflective of that position that we hold as children of God as ambassadors of his kingdom people should be able to look at us any Christian but especially passwords and see the attributes of Christ in our lives now as a pastor there is another layer of Duty because we hold a spiritual office as an overseer isn't it under Shepherd and a preacher of God's word and that is to say that in a very real sense we are the ones the pastors and teachers spoke of in the new in the New Testament who proclaim the words of God to the people of God and I'm this is a weighty role that we sit in here Franklin James 31 States not many of you should become teachers my brothers
 you know if we who teach will be judged with greater strictness so I think about this for a minute and if you're not passed I think this is still an edifying discussion to please pay attention as a pastor you know who stands before men to represent God and His word my concern isn't so much without dress will affect our God's view of the pastor but how dress will affect man's view of the pastor and furthermore the gospel is no light-hearted or superficial content meaning the things a faithful pastor says or very serious things in fact because they're God's words they're the most serious thing on earth so basically you know I want to break this down we have three points that really lay the groundwork for this kind of
 representative position of a pastor to take you through these and all kind of wrap up my case here in a second. Ever won a pastor is a man whose Central duty is not to relate with the culture but to most accurately represent God before the culture and to do so in a manner which is respected by the culture in which they live in you for example 1st Timothy 3 requires that pastors are dignified orderly respectable and and thought of a thought well of even by Outsiders is what it says in 1st Timothy 3:2 is a pastor is a man whose duty is to Proclaim to the culture the very words of the King of Kings and the Lord of lords a pastor is also a man who is sitting in a formal biblical office
 that has been set apart and appointed to the work of ministry and the spiritual oversight of God's children so we have really three things that I talked about the physical represent representation before man we have the verbal representation before man and we have the formal officer position representation before men now personally I believe that a suit or some degree of professional attire in our society best captures the type of dress that reflects not only the seriousness of the role that I'm in as a pastor but it's also congruent with the seriousness of the word that I speak when I'm in the Pulpit eye doctor Steve Lawson actually talks about this in a really great video that I'll link and the show notes and I agree with him to Proclaim
 and preach God's word what you get is a very weighty and serious and consequential thing to do it and it's consequential content to do so in a casual attire casual clothing seems to be inconsistent or incoherent with the activity of of preaching God's word in again this is why I get government officials wear suits when they gather for congress they want their exterior dress to match not only the seriousness of the activity that they're carrying out but also match the importance of the nation that they represent the same logic is carried out in the medical field in the military and the police in the business world right people understand that dress is representative of and linked to the activity that they're doing and this is why we don't wear suits when we mow Lawns or
 you know we don't wear suits when we wash our cars that the degree of dress changes with the activities that we do right if I'm going to go you know go camping I'm not going to wear a suit if I'm going to go preach in the Pulpit I might wear a suit if I'm going to go to a men's meeting I might just wear something more like business casual there's ranged depending on the duties in the activities that you're protecting him now let me offer you just maybe one more analogy that might help clarify this point I'm trying to make and let's just take Ivanka Trump for four for a minute as an example her father is the president of the United States now she knows that she can run to her father in casual attire or even in her pajamas and her father loves and that isn't she really knows that her clothing doesn't change the relationship between her and her father however when she goes out and you know into the pub
 to formally represent her father before the culture she does so in a manner that's reflective of the respect that she has both for the person her father is and the position that he's in do you think this is true with the Lord as well I can run to Jesus and whatever right if I'm wearing sweatpants and a and a t-shirt I could run to Jesus and whatever and the lord loves me because I'm his son so it's not about a representation before the Lord necessarily but when I go out to represent him before the culture before and on looking world I do modify my dress to best reflect my respect and reverence for my father so that's just my position but Franklin I believe this ultimately begins with you and changing this kind of culture in your church and I think when you was a pastor work to dress in a way that most accurately reflects the reverence that you have for the one that you represent which is Christ I believe this is
 both influence those in your flock and offer you the authority to speak into their lives on the specific issue now before I closed with a thought for everyone else regarding clothing at church I do want to say I want to speak just briefly about this matter of being kind of set apart as a pastor yeah I guess you said a part of the Christian you know but even more specifically as a pastor and allowing dress to display the difference of spiritual roll or authority that's been given to you so again in a police officers and doctors allow their dress to validate their Authority this is why you don't getting pulled over by a police officer out of uniform would be very weird this is not a foreign idea right we just totally grasp this concept in our culture
 but I do think the pastor should be wearing something that in our culture displays maturity and Leadership again I said this early we have way too many hipster pastors wide neck t-shirts at their chest hair hanging out in hats and torn up jeans in the Pulpit it's got to stop these are men who are you know again mimicking the culture in an attempt to attract people to their church but you know that God's the one that builds the church right people build institutions that the Lord will build the family of God we don't need to work to attract people you know what is a quote that I often say what you win people with is what you win people too so you better be winning people with the gospel with the Bible and the Covenant people of God and so while these people try to appeal to the culture God is perfectly okay with distinctions between male and female roles he's okay with distinctions between young and old
 and he's he's totally good with the distinctions between pastors and church members now we as pastors are called 28 High responsibility that requires but I believe in elevated degree of character have you read 1st Timothy Chapter 3 in Titus one you will see the character requirements of a pastor now the idea of using dress in some degree to signify Authority that idea just going to be straight up hated in our culture we live in an egalitarian society who wants everyone to be the same but the truth is Franklin you are not in the same position as your congregation and as I mentioned earlier God will judge you with a stricter judgment acts 20:28 tell pastors quote pay careful attention to yourselves and to all the flock and which the Holy Spirit has made you overseers to care for the Church of God which he obtained
 with his own blood into bottom line I just believe that dress may seem small but it does play an important role in the church in the society in which we live and I'm not saying that you have to wear a specific outfit I'm just saying is that you needs to be mature and it's be respectable it needs to be reverent and needs to be representative of the character that you have needs to be something that is reflective of the posture and reverence and respect that you have before the Lord so that's my my point that Franklin now for everyone else
 what is closed briefly here is I think that this should at the very minimum cause you to ask yourself the question when I come to church on Sunday to stand before the Lord to stand with my brothers and sisters in Christ and to understand what Those whom the Lord maybe has caused to join the church as visitors does my dress rightly display my reverence for the Lord doesn't mean that you have to wear full suit or a $300 dress to church that's not what I'm saying our clothing just needs to be modest respectable put together a representative of of you know the gratitude that we have from the Lord and the Lord putting us back together in Freedom in in glory with him
 you even though you might want to ask a question are you more willing to elevate your dress in your your attire for you know a dinner with your friends and you are with the Gathering of the Saints are you teaching your children
 that the meeting of the Saints on Sunday is really no different than any other activities in your life or are you teaching your family that Sunday is the Lord's day yesterday that of Resurrection it's the day the first day that he created the world it's it's an important day it's a day to be with the Lord's people and we give our best to the Lord and his church we know that we're not earning favor by changing our a tire we know that the Lord doesn't love us anymore because of what we what we where we are simply displaying our reverence for him and the way that we that we come to church in the attire that we we're we're presenting to others by our attire and by our visual posture to see how important this weekly Gathering truly is
 it doesn't just good questions for you to consider I know so many families United Steve loss and I'll put this video here at the end
 does a really good job that talks about how when he was a little boy his dad would help him get his clothes laid out on the bed and how he would you know his dad would help him tie his tie in the night before and then it would loosen it up and then take it off and he'd iron his clothes and shine his shoes at night before and he knew that you know tomorrow is the Lord's day and it's an important day in and we give our best the Lord we stand before the Lord and we would get dressed up to go to the present and we're going to go into the stand before Jesus Christ and worship him and there was just this posture of you know dr. Lawson remembering that this is a big deal it's different it's it's a setup Heart Day in a set of part-time and again it doesn't need to be a suit it can just be something that's that's professionally you know it's professional it's respectable it's modest and it doesn't cost a lot of money either I think that you know
 just going to Salvation Army or thrift store in grabbing some different things is quite all right I've done that several times in finding my own different ties are different sport coats and so that's my encouragement to you guys and hopefully this is helpful just a discussion I think a lot of people ask about this or what should we wear but again I know I directed a lot of this conversation towards pastors and I hopefully for those that are there yeah it mean maybe pass this episode along to your pastor if if you think it's something that would be at a fine for him that's always having to leave you guys with a few resources that will further your understanding of of this topic the first is a video by dr. Lawson and it's why do I wear a coat and tie and it's a short like 5 to 6 minute video that is going to talk a lot about the things that I spoke about here but it's just from another perspective the other thing
 is that another video It's actually an interview but his doctor loss and he's saying kind of a similar story but actually he add some more color and some more perspective but it's titled video tell her what you wear to church reflects what you think about God and I think it's just a helpful perspective to have and again I think it's totally preference because it's not something that's commanded scripture but they're very helpful videos and and this is just something that I think will be edifying for many people I'm so check those I don't have those on the post page for this episode this is episode number 127 and I'm actually close out just wanted to remind you guys if you guys have not left review for the show and you guys were regular listener to the real Christianity podcast would you guys consider doing that you don't even need to write something you can just tap the stars but if you do write something I will read it I actually read some of the reviews today and most of them were positive we had some people that
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