Modesty-Inward Beauty

beauty, modesty No Comments

The contrast between our present culture and the church can be seen by noting the following:  (1) contemporary culture is secular while the church is the spiritual body of Christ; (2) the present culture is liberated and functions free from most constraints while the church pursues the will of the LORD and is bound by the covenant terms and conditions that He has given; (3) the present culture is godless having no fear of God or love for Him while the church loves God and fears Him. (4) the present culture seeks to please itself (men pleasers) while the church is focused on pleasing God.  The church declares the glory of God and shows the world the beauty of the Lord.
Beauty in character will transform the outward appearance.  Outward beauty is prized by the world and exploited for profit.  Inward beauty is prized by God.  “But let it be the hidden man of the heart, in that which is not corruptible, even the ornament of a meek and quiet spirit, which is in the sight of God of great price” (I Pet. 3:4).  God gives us a dress code for the heart.  This code of character governs the outward appearance.
There are six spiritual concepts that every Christian must embrace in order to manifest the inward beauty that God approves of and delights in.  Consider I Timothy  2:9-10, “In like manner also, that women adorn themselves in modest apparel, with shamefacedness and sobriety; not with broided hair, or gold, or pearls, or costly array: but (which becometh women professing godliness) with good works.”
Adorn (kosmeoEnglish, cosmetic) to arrange, to put in order, thus, furnishing one’s person.  Outward appearance must be appropriate.  But, according to whose standards?  The answer is according to God’s standards.  The phrase, “as a woman that professes godliness” applies to this thought.  A Christian should dress in imitation of God’s holiness (I Pet. 1:14-15). 
Modesty (kosmios) orderly, well-arranged, decent, discreet.  That which is immodest:  (1) creates chaos not order–so pushes the limits of decency; (2) incites to lust and becomes an avenue of temptation through seduction; and (3) distracts through indecent display and calls attention to self rather than God.  To be discreet means to keep private parts private.  Self-control (another virtue of the heart) that manages one’s own sexuality.  Modesty involves shrinking back from the public display of private parts.
Shamefacedness (aidos) meaning the moral sensibility which shrinks from transgressing the limits of propriety.  Aidos is a sense of shame!  The way some people dress is shameful.  When we violate the sense of what is decent and discreet we blush.  Shame changes the countenance of a person.  The code of morality comes from God who is holy.  This moral code cannot be transgressed without sin.  Aidos keeps us from transgressing this God-given moral code.
Sobriety (sophrosune) is soundness of mind that produces spiritual discernment.  It denotes that habitual inner self-government with its constant rein on all the passions and desires which restrains from giving in to temptation and sinning against God.  Temperance (self-control) works in conjunction with a trained conscience to keep us from yielding to temptation.  Self-control married to spiritual discernment produces sophrosune.
Not Ostentatious or not with the vanity of personal display (not with broided hair, gold, pearls or costly array).  The vanity of personal display is prideful.  Pride is at the root of every sin against God.
Good Works reflect a beauty of life rather than beauty of dress!  Some of the inward qualities on display in good works are:  love, compassion, selflessness, sacrifice, goodness, faith, and a servant spirit.  God is more concerned with beauty of the heart and in what we do rather than in the outward appearance.
Your clothes reflect your character.  Let the beauty of Jesus be seen in you!  Beauty of character will manifest itself in our outward appearance and especially in our works.  Let us glorify God in our body and in our spirits which are God’s (I Cor. 6:19-20).