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Discussion in 'Church Order' started by Wannabee, Dec 23, 2008.
but do you think her soul is in jepordey if she wear a strapless dress?
I wouldn't want to confuse fruit with the root, but it is an indication. I'm not going to tell you, or anyone here, what is immodest. There is a point where it is a matter of conscience. However, as a carer of souls I cannot go against my conscience in regard to this either.
I think much of the problem is inherent in the question though. The question is entirely self-focused. If she wears... is her soul in jeopardy? I say this gently and kindly, but such a question is humanistic in it's approach. The question should always be, "What will bring God the most glory?" or "How much can I do to bring God more glory?" or "What can I wear that would be the least distracting from my desire to see God glorified?" or something along these lines. We must focus on God first, period.
This thought process permeates our culture. "How far can we go?" is the most obvious one. But we see this in every aspect of life, where professing Christians push the envelope, attempting to walk the tightrope that represents the line just shy of avoiding sin. They are focused on themselves. We should make it our habit to avoid even approaching the line as much as possible.
Does this mean that a bride sins when she wears a strapless dress? I'll let you judge that. But I encourage you to judge with a focus on the promotion of godliness, not bridal esteem. If you can honestly say that there is nothing about wearing a strapless dress that could distract from godliness or is an attempt to gain undue attention then you might have point. But I would further submit that you only have a valid point if you can claim that the strapless dress is the choice that is most likely pertaining to godliness.
Thank you for the question Jessica.
I totally agree with Wannabee. So many women have never been taught better, so I'm sure it is helpful to have someone lovingly point out that certain styles of dresses are immodest. Many of these women are sincere Christians, but their moms and dads perhaps never taught them to cover up.
These are just some thoughts I had. Please do not take this an a disagreement with the concerns expressed in your OP, or the need for modesty in weddings (and everywhere else), because I agree with you wholeheartedly there. But I am not sure about the manner you seem to be suggesting in going about answering Jessica's question.
I don’t want to say anything on the specific issue of strapless dresses, but I am not sure that this principle can necessarily be applied in a blanket fashion to the issue of dressing (whether at a wedding or elsewhere).
The bible does not present the issue of dressing as being simply how far can we stay away from the line of sin, because the bible itself says that there is virtue in dressing well both in general (Proverbs 31:22) and in the specific context of a wedding (Is 61:10, Jer 2:32). The bible itself would say that God is glorified in both the attractiveness and the modesty of the bride’s dressing.
So I do not think it is really possible to answer the question of what to wear on a wedding without discussing the merits (or lack thereof) of a particular item of clothing under question. To ask “What will glorify God?” does not, of itself suggest an answer as the God glorifying response is not always the most “conservative” one (please remember again I am not making these comments in the context of any specific item of clothing).
That said, if concerns have been expressed about an item of clothing, I think a woman who wants to glorify God will want to avoid offence and will be willing to change her clothing choices at a wedding if she is asked to. That, I think, is the how these questions should ultimately be resolved in a church.
I think your comments are very complementary to my own, and perhaps bring some clarity that mine lacked. I see no contradiction whatsoever.
A few questions and things to keep in mind: your church is in the UP. Not a lot of large cities containing a bunch of bridal shops or holding inventory for too long in a depressed economy (the UP is worse off than GR and that is a bad thing). Is the dress a heirloom? If so, then you called the bride, her mother and grandparents immodest hussies (that WILL be the impression especially. What is the wedding date (estimated)? If it is less than 6 months away, there is another problem. Bridal shops estimate it takes about 6 months from the day the dress is ordered to complete all alterations and order the right dress for weddings. If there is enough time and the shop nearby does NOT sell "appropriately modest dresses", are you going to personally pay the cost of shipping for an "appropriately modest dress" AND the cost of the alterations? What reason do you have to not trust the girl's father to make the call of what is and is not appropriate for his daughter to wear? And is modesty only confined to her dress?
A personal note: I was married on the west coast in a big city. My pastor who married us saw no need to "preapprove the dress" but was more concerned with us building a strong relationship after The Day. My bridesmaids and I were fortunate to find non strapless dresses "off the rack" (and we had a large enough LD$ population to have a temple in town). My dress had spaghetti straps and all my bridesmaids and the flower girl wore sleeveless dresses (it was late summer and was quite warm). My pastor was able to present the gospel of Christ to my unbelieving family and friends without being "that guy who flipped out over spaghetti straps."
I wore a strapless wedding dress.
No, it's not my daughter. As Lawrence shared, I have two sons.
I might be doing the wedding, but am not sure yet.
It is my son. If you'd like to read more about it, go to http://www.puritanboard.com/f32/looks-like-there-going-wedding-41709/.
Thanks for the links and perspectives on this.