I’m In Love With a Church Girl: A Christian Review

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Asking for good theology from a B-Movie is a pretty tall order. To be honest, I might have said nothing if the production company was not named “Reverence Gospel Media.” However, being that they are trying to communicate something about the Gospel, I hold such a production house to a much higher standard.

Now, if you want to know more about the plot of the movie (a drug-dealer connected but not slangin’ concert promoter named Miles with questionable friends falls in love with a girl that is pretty moral and goes to a mega church, and they get married and he becomes a pastor in the end) I suggest you just click the above link.

However, what I want to comment on specifically are the movie’s disturbing theological elements.

Arminianism. A pastor in the movie tells the gang-bangin’ yet totally legit protagonist something along the lines of, “I had a calling in my life and I couldn’t ignore it anymore. You have a calling in your life too, everyone does. But YOU have to answer the call.” (The conversation starts at around 59:40.) Throughout the movie there is schizophrenic thinking as it pertains to God’s all powerful nature and ordaining of events, including Miles’ mother’s death and his girlfriend getting in a coma. God is all powerful in these events and the movie does not deny it. Yet, to argue that God can control the free will of men so that they get into car accidents and put your girlfriend in a coma, but He can’t make you answer a call from Him requires special pleading.

Arminianism is at its center an unbiblical way of thinking. The Bible has crystal clear examples of man’s free will being molded and changed, so the issue is not whether it is impossible, it is. Therefore, when the Scripture states, “For to you it has been granted for Christ’s sake, not only to believe in Him, but also to suffer for His sake” (Phil 1:29), it is rather clear that God could grant us belief, because “it is God who is at work in you, both to will and to work for His good pleasure” (Phil 2:13).

That is why Paul says, “For by grace you have been saved through faith; and that not of yourselves, it is the gift of God” (Eph 2:8) because not even faith is of ourselves. Yes, we got to answer the call, but if it is God at work in us we don’t answer the call apart from Him working through us “both to will and to work.” If “there is none who understands, there is none who seeks for God” (Rom 3:11) then there cannot be anything within the man that compells him to answer God’s call. But, thanks be to God, just as “the Lord opened her heart to respond to the things spoken by Paul” in Lydia’s day (Acts 16:14) He is as work doing the same thing today.

The burden of proof is on someone who says God has nothing to do with man coming to believe, because I can’t find anything in the Bible that says that.

Love of money. In the same conversation with the Pastor, Miles marvels at how the pastor looks like one of the guys he would chase tail with at the club. Pointing out his dress, the pastor responds, “You’re kinda tight yourself Miles.”

“I’m not driving a Lambo,” Miles says incredulously.

“Lambo?,” the Pastor responds defensively. “When I pulled into the parking lot I saw a four door Bentley and I’m assuming that’s yours man!…Last time I read the Bible it said nothing about style being a sin, it kinda goes back to the old saying that you can’t judge a book by its cover.”

Apparently the pastor needs to spend less time at the Lambo dealer and more time hitting the books. The Scripture warns “the love of money is the root of all sorts of evil” (1 Tim 6:10) and “do not store up for yourselves treasures on earth, where moth and rust destroy, and where thieves break in and steal, but store up for yourselves treasures in heaven” (Matt 6:19-20). Why? “For where your treasure is, there your heart is also” (Matt 6:21). What does it tell you if you store up treasures such as Italian sports cars and flashy clothes on Earth? That your treasures are stored on Earth, and that “you ask with wrong motives, so that you may spend it on your pleasures. You adulteresses, do you not know that friendship with the world is hostility toward God? Therefore whoever wishes to be a friend of the world makes himself an enemy of God” (James 4:3-4).

Guard your own heart and it’s desires, for if your desires are focused on there here and now, and not glorifying God, there is no mistake as to what your inclinations are towards.

Relationships. The one positive thing about the movie is that the couple does not have sex before marriage. However, it is exceedingly obvious that though Miles’ squeeze does not want to be “unequally yoked” (2 Cor 6:14), she accepts a marriage proposal before he even accepts Christ as his savior. Christians are compelled to marry “in the Lord” (1 Cor 7:39), which rules out relationships with non-believers.

So, while it isn’t wrong to have a friendship with a non-Christian, to become romantically involved with one is clearly a bad idea, being that the point of romance is marriage.

 

In summary, if you can ignore the bad theological elements in this movie it can be enjoyed. However, there is hardly any meat to it that makes it useful to show to non-believers. Further, I would be wary to show it to anyone that was not very firm in the faith as it is the opposite of instructive. It is disappointing that a man like Miles, with tons of sin in his life, is never presented the Gospel as a means in which he can attain forgiveness and new life.

And this is the problem with the liberal Christianity presented in this film. Christ is your buddy who is with you in the ups and downs. He’s give you a big ol’ bear hug during the days of doubt.

However, this is not who God really is. God takes compassion on me and you. We are so wicked, not only do we constantly sin against Him we can’t even be reasoned with. We don’t want to be forgiven, we want to make our own way to heaven. But deep down, you know that’s not true. You can’t repay God with something He has given you. He is merciful and loving, and if you know there is nothing you can do then accept the Lord Jesus. In Him there is forgiveness for sins and by Him comes the gift for you to accept Him now in your life.

Response to a proponent of gender egalitarianism

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Whether or not we hold to a traditionalist view of gender roles, or to egalitarianism, our reasoning should always be rooted in what the Scripture teaches.
Originally Posted by NorrinRadd View Post

On the accusation of twisting Scripture, or the assertion that male leadership is clearly and consistently taught: Patriarchalists should be aware that we egalitarians / mutualists do not view ourselves as manipulating or ignoring Scripture…

Some egalitarians actually try arguing from the Scripture,  but most hold a very low view of Scripture asking, “Do you really believe this verse? Do you really believe that verse?”

In fact, when it comes to the household codes in the Pastoral Epistles, Colossians, and Ephesians, you make the same argument: “Those verse talk about slavery, we don’t really need to listen to what they say!”

Really? We don’t have to listen to the Scripture? And, you’re the one telling us that egalitarians don’t manipulate or patently ignore the Scripture?!?

I am yet to encounter someone argue for egalitarianism strictly from the Scriptures. I have heard “well, it works for me” or “that’s old fashioned” but not an argument from the Scripture.”

Regarding Junia (Rom 16:1) — Last I heard, the “CBMW” view is that the gender is questionable, but probably male, while the opposing view is that it was a not-uncommon female name, but there are virtually zero examples of that name, even as a diminutive for a longer name, being used for males.

Questionable conclusions requiring research from outside the Scripture would not undo explicit commands in the Scripture to the contrary. We uphold the perspicuity of Scripture and believe the Scripture is sufficient in explaining itself to average Christians. If we have to resort to scholarship and an immense knowledge of ancient history in order to extrapolate a doctrine, take heed lest the doctrine you extrapolate is heretical.

Further, if Junia is a woman (most likely), what egalitarians cannot demonstrate is that an Apostle holds any sort of office in the church. Everyone who knew Jesus Christ or saw His resurrected body like Paul were Apostles. Junia may have been a missionary of sorts. To read into the text meanings that are not there, that she had any sort of authority over men, is not warranted from the text and requires the Scripture to contradict itself, which is not an acceptable interpretation.

Regarding Phoebe — The fact that she was probably the courier of the epistle to the Romans is part of what argues for “deacon” rather than “servant.”

Actually, the opposite is true. Onesimus delivered the letter to the Colossians and possibly Ephesians, but he did not have any specific office in the church. I help clean my church’s toilets, but I don’t have any sort of Office. Helping out does not give one authority.

That portion of the epistle has the form of a “letter of commendation,” which is why we believe she was the courier. As such, it lists her qualifications, including “diakonos of the church at Cenchrea”; that sounds like she was an “officer.”

This is certainly possible, but not conclusive. A “complementarian” denomination, the PCA, has “Deaconesses” for this reason. They still cannot teach or have authority over men. So, even if Phoebe held the office of Deacon, we cannot infer the level of authority egalitarians think she had.

However, this is not my personal interpretation anyhow, because it would require the description of Deacons in 1 Tim 2 to be incorrect. After all, they must be husbands of one wife. A wife cannot be a husband, so by default women are excluded. So, being that the Greek permits us to view Phoebe as a “servant/deacon” instead of a “Servant/Deacon,” I prefer the reading that makes more sense with the rest of Scriptures.

To desire the reading that makes less sense with the rest of Scriptures seems to me, at best, questionable.

She is also given the title “prostatis.” This is often lamely translated “helper,” but it is in fact a significant title in the early church.

Where? Show me in the Greek:” http://www.scripture4all.org/OnlineI…Tpdf/rom16.pdf

You may be mistaken and if so, the conclusions you draw based upon this are wrong.

Regarding the deacon and elder/overseer “qualifications” in the “Pastoral Epistles,” and the suggestion they permit only males
– The CEB is the only translation I’ve seen so far that accurately renders the sex of the nouns, pronouns, and idioms…

The CEB seems to have translation issues, but neither of us are Greek scholars, so I would need more evidence than just quoting an unpopular translation that is by admission a paraphrase.

Regarding 1 Cor. 11 — Whatever that passage is about, it is not likely about male “authority.” The only place “authority” occurs is v. 10, which says “a woman has authority over her own head.”

Actually, that’s incorrect. You gloss over verse 10, but the head covering is a “symbol of authority.” What kind of authority? Answer this and you will see your argument unravel, the text is clear.

If the authority is man, then game over. If you want to argue the authority is God, then we go back to 1 Cor 11:3 where it makes this explicit, and in that verse “man is the head of woman.” So, either way, game over for egalitarianism.

Regarding appeals to the “Creation Order,” neither the Gen. 1 account nor the Gen. 2 account shows any inequality between man/husband and woman/wife.

No one is making that argument, though Paul argues that man was not made for woman, but woman for man (1 Cor 11:9) at the time of creation. This shows a role distinction, though not inferiority.

That [gender roles] first appears in Gen. 3, as a consequence of the Fall.

Incorrect. The fall is not why women submit to husbands. Eve was Adam’s “helpmeet” before the fall. “Man was not created for woman, but woman for man” before the fall. So, the role distinction is not the result of the fall, but part of God’s plan for humankind before the fall.

Regarding the Domestic Codes passages — Some of them do seem to endorse male leadership in the home.

Actually, they all explicitly endorse male headship.

But the same reading encourages us to consider slave-ownership normal.

Okay, so if the Scripture says anything about slavery, that means if we don’t like what it says we can disagree with other things the Bible says? That sounds like what you are saying. If not, what are you saying.

Grief over head coverings

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Whenever the issue comes up, I feel that all it causes me is grief. The non-believer is not the one who takes issue, he finds Christianity strange to begin with. It is the believer who takes issue.

Again, last evening, I have been called to task to give a reasoning behind what I believe to be the soundest interpretation behind Biblical topics on dress and decorum.

The insinuation that following such teachings is “legalism” came up, but there was a slightly different angle put on it. To summarize his position, it is that two different Christians can “legitimately” try to be obedient to the passage, but their obedience can look much different.

Now, on first glance this is true. For example, while the only way a man can not cover his head when praying or prophesying is to just have nothing on his head, there is a fair degree of freedom in how a woman applies the passage. The type of head covering is not defined, the amount of hair that sneaks out from under it is not specified from us, and other matters such as these.

However, what I find hard to stomach is that we can be obedient to a passage and in practice blatantly contradict its plain meaning. How can one legitimately apply the passage, but then cover his head when praying or keep hers uncovered? Any such assertions that one is applying the passage is contradicted by their behavior.

So, in order for those who oppose head coverings to be free from hypocrisy, they would have to maintain that the simplest interpretation to the passage is incorrect, and that another interpreptation is more honoring to God and consistent with other teachings in Scripture.

This is why I always go back to hermeneutics when discussing this issue. The problem is not simply that people are not dressing the right way. That may be a problem for a lot of Christians who simply ignore the passage as “old fashioned” or who have never read it. Those people aside, the real problem is Christians who approach Scripture as the word of God and believe in its overall clarity, but when approaching this topic all of the sudden change their approach to how they would apply a given passage.

Hence, their hermeneutic is inconsistent.

For example, later in the same chapter of 1 Cor 11 the Lord’s Supper is spoken of. I am not aware of any serious interpreters of the Bible that would do away with the Lord’s Supper or change the elements to related concoctions, such as cookies and grape soda. Why? Because the simplest way to apply the passage is to follow what it says. Generally, there are no constraints on attaining the necessary ingredients and the ordainance can be followed without major problems.

Then we have churches that won’t allow women to hold offices. The reasoning is simple. The Scripture speaks of male headship and sates that women teaching religion to men is equivalent ti having authority over them, which is unacceptable. So, the way this topic is interpreted and approached is simply by being obedient to what the clear passages state about the matter.

Finally, we have the issues of dress and head coverings. There is nothing confusing about what is written. For example, “don’t wear gold” or “men must not have their heads covered” are not complicated admonishments. Then, why when these passages are approached instead of accepting the reasoning given within the passages themselves that we all of the sudden bring in history or essentially accuse the teachings of Peter and Paul of being legalistic like the Pharisees? Wouldn’t Peter and Paul know better how to apply these passages than us?

And, if they tell us how to apply it, why is it less obedient for the Christian to do what it says, understanding why the passage says he ought to do it?

The latter question is particularly important to me. If the reason I am given has no specific Biblical justification concerning how to do otherwise shows greater obedience to God, it appears rather clear to me that such an interpretation is not of God. And apart from the grace of God, we cannot apply Scripture or walk according to His ways.

1 Tim 2:14-15: A Simple Interpretation

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And it was not Adam who was deceived, but the woman being deceived, fell into transgression. But women will be preserved through the bearing of children if they continue in faith and love and sanctity with self-restraint (1 Tim 2:14-15).

Paul was not bashing women in these passages, he was putting forward a pretty simple, and Biblically consistent point.

First, was it’s Eve’s fault that mankind fell into transgression, because she was deceived? No, it is not through Eve we all die but through Adam (Rom 5:12-14).

So, what is Paul’s point in bringing this up? He is invoking history to warn Timothy what occurs when a woman seizes authority over a man. Immediately preceding verse 14, Paul’s reasoning is made clear:

I do not allow a woman to teach or exercise authority over a man, but to remain quiet. (Verse 12)

Why?

For it was Adam who was first created, and then Eve. And it was not Adam who was deceived, but the woman being deceived, fell into transgression (Verses 13 and 14).

So, verse 12 is the situation, and verses 13 and 14 are what we should learn from history. In the “Genuine Pauline Epistles,” which are all of them in the Bible, Paul makes a similar practice of this in 1 Cor 10-1:5-7 in order to warn against idolatry:

For I do not want you to be unaware, brethren, that our fathers were all under the cloud and all passed through the sea…Nevertheless, with most of them God was not well-pleased; for they were laid low in the wilderness (Verses 1 and 5).

Why?

Now these things happened as examples for us, so that we would not crave evil things as they also craved. Do not be idolaters, as some of them were… (Verses 6 and 7).

So, Paul’s method of warning is clear and why he warns is explicit in the text. He does not want women to exercise authority over a man, because just as it resulted in deception and sin in Adam’s case when he deferred to his wife, it could happen men in the Church too!

Now, such an interpretation can be dismissed out of hand if passages such as the following did not exist:

But I want you to understand that Christ is the head of every man, and the man is the head of a woman, and God is the head of Christ (1 Cor 11:3).

If any man aspires to the office of overseer, it is a fine work he desires to do. An overseer, then, must be above reproach, the husband of one wife (1 Tim 3:1-2).

Deacons likewise must be men of dignity…These men must also first be tested; then let them serve as deacons if they are beyond reproach…Deacons must be husbands of only one wife, and good managers of their children and their own households (1 Tim 3:8, 10, 12; verse 11 was removed because it is not talking about “deaconesses” which there is not any Scriptural or historical evidence of it being an office in the Church).

I will avoid the parallel passages in Titus, and those on marriage which explicitly state male headship in Eph 5, Col 3, 1 Peter 3. The burden of proof is on the liberal theologian.

There are about 36,000 verses in the Bible. Perhaps a few hundred mention anything about gender and gender roles, with 99% unequivocally from the traditionally viewpoint. Of those, maybe 1% (or 3 or 4 sections) pertain to matters invoked by liberal theologians such as Ruth being a judge, Phoebe being a servant, the gender of Junia, and etc. I ask you, dear reader, what is more likely: when properly interpreted these verses throw the 99% into contradiction, or, with a consistent hermeneutic, these verses do not contradict a traditional view of gender roles? Case in point, Ruth being a prophet does not mean she had authority over men, Junia may be both a man’s and woman’s name (i.e. Alexis or Corey in the present), Phoebe didn’t have an official office in the church, and other such interpretations maintain the consistency of Scripture without taking mental leaps of imagination.

These are not difficult interpretations and they make the preponderance of Scripture make sense. The egalitarian viewpoint, which isolates the one percent of supposedly questionable texts, makes a bunch of unsubstantiated conclusions based upon possible implications of these verses and then throws the 99 percent in complete contradiction. Hermeneutically, I don’t find this acceptable.

Most importantly, when we look at the select verses in the Bible speaks that explicitly, instead of in passing, speak of gender roles, it is always traditional without equivocation. Hence, the evidence is undeniable for male headship. Look at the gender of Levitical priests, elders, deacons, the twelve disciples, the apostles and then try looking for the “exceptions.” One will find maybe two (the aforementioned issue of Junia’s gender in Rom 16:7 and Phoebe being called a “servant” Rom 16:1, probably because she delivered the letter personally).

What is the average reader of the Bible supposed to believe? That these two, not even clear as it pertains to gender roles in the Church, verses can even possibly contradict 1 Cor 11:3, 1 Tim 3, Titus 1, Eph 5, Col 3, 1 Peter 3, and the mountain of circumstantial evidence that every single Apostle that wrote in the New Testament is a man and every explicit church office in the Bible was held by a man? This makes the Bible either incomprehensible or clearly self-contradictory.

Therefore, if we accept the intellectually honest and Biblically sound position of male spiritual headship in the Church, Paul’s admonition is actually sensible: don’t make the same mistake Adam did and allow women to take spiritual authority over men, because ultimately the man is the head of woman and he will be accountable for the sins that result.

“Now these things happened to them as an example, and they were written for our instruction, upon whom the ends of the ages have come,” Paul says in his other warning from history in 1 Corinthians 10. “Therefore let him who thinks he stands take heed that he does not fall.”

Now, what on Earth is Paul talking about in verse 15 of 1 Tim 2? Obviously, the Bible does not contradict itself, so the idea women can be “preserved”/”saved” spiritually merely by giving birth to children is a totally wrong interpretation. Further, the idea that Christian women will suffer a lesser mortality rate than non-believers from childbirth is also unacceptable.

Some commentators argue that women are saved from, what the literal translation of the Greek states, “the childbirth [of Christ].” Even though this would not be untrue, the context of the sentence should rule this out, because Paul continues with “if they continue in faith and love and sanctity with self-restraint.” Instead, I put forward a very straightforward and plain interpretation: women are saved if they continue in living a faithful life. Period. For the vast majority of the female population, this includes childbirth, which is the primary biological role for women (as the primary biological role for men is to impregnate their wives).

God wants us to live obedient lives to Him. For women specifically, managing their households well and being mothers (Titus 2:3-5), is an ever-present reality even for the working-woman. Of course, that does not mean there are not exceptions. The Bible warns “if you do not work you do not eat” (2 Thes 3:10), but this does not include very old widows (1 Tim 5:9) or crippled men.

Of course there are plenty of women that are barren or unmarried and the teaching in 1 Tim 2 would not be literally applicable any more than 2 Thes 3:10 would be to retired grandmas. However, the general and overall point Paul is trying to make is simple and clear: continue in the faith in the place and role God has ordained for you instead of taking over a role you were not meant for.

I am the first one to hate my job and my station in life. But, 1 Tim 2:15 teaches me, and hopefully all of us, otherwise.

Makeup, Jewelry, and the Bible

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“All old barns can use a little paint,” says Paul Washer, not quoting a bit of Scripture. He asserts there is nothing wrong with make-up or jewelry, but Christian women should just not wear too much.

If you find yourself asking this question, there is a good reason for it: you already know the answer in your gut. Would you keep asking the question if you knew the answer was “all things in moderation?”

Obviously, after some cursory reading of the Bible, you know that there is something wrong about it. Well, there is a reason for that. There are at least eight different negative mentions of jewelry and makeup in the Bible. I tried avoiding any passages which require huge interpretive stretches.

Against Outward Adornment

Likewise also that women should adorn themselves in respectable apparel, with modesty and self-control, not with braided hair and gold or pearls or costly attire, but with what is proper for women who profess godliness—with good works (1 Tim 2:9-10).

Do not let your adorning be external—the braiding of hair and the putting on of gold jewelry, or the clothing you wear— but let your adorning be the hidden person of the heart with the imperishable beauty of a gentle and quiet spirit, which in God’s sight is very precious (1 Peter 3:3-4).

Do not love the world or the things in the world. If anyone loves the world, the love of the Father is not in him. For all that is in the world—the desires of the flesh and the desires of the eyes and pride in possessions—is not from the Father but is from the world (1 John 2:15-16). Note: Jewelry is a possession, so I think it is applicable here.

And you, O desolate one, what do you mean that you dress in scarlet, that you adorn yourself with ornaments of gold, that you enlarge your eyes with paint? In vain you beautify yourself. Your lovers despise you; they seek your life (Jer 4:30).

For if a man comes into your assembly with a gold ring and dressed in fine clothes, and there also comes in a poor man in dirty clothes, and you pay special attention to the one who is wearing the fine clothes, and say, “You sit here in a good place,” and you say to the poor man, “You stand over there, or sit down by my footstool,” have you not made distinctions among yourselves, and become judges with evil motives (James 2:2-4)?

Moreover, the Lord said, “Because the daughters of Zion are proud and walk with heads held high and seductive eyes, and go along with mincing steps and tinkle the bangles on their feet. Therefore the Lord will afflict the scalp of the daughters of Zion with scabs, and the Lord will make their foreheads bare.” In that day the Lord will take away the beauty of their anklets, headbands, crescent ornaments, dangling earrings, bracelets, veils, headdresses, ankle chains, sashes, perfume boxes, amulets, finger rings, nose rings, festal robes, outer tunics, cloaks, money purses, hand mirrors, undergarments, turbans and veils. Now it will come about that instead of sweet perfume there will be putrefaction; instead of a belt, a rope; instead of well-set hair, a plucked-out scalp; instead of fine clothes, a donning of sackcloth; and branding instead of beauty (Is 3:16-24).

When Jehu came to Jezreel, Jezebel heard of it. And she painted her eyes and adorned her head and looked out of the window (2 Kings 9:30).

Like a gold ring in a pig’s snout is a beautiful woman without discretion (Prov 11:22).

The teachings in the above reflect a negative view of jewelry and make-up. In the New Testament, where the context of the Law is more thoroughly explained, the warnings against outward adornment are more explicit. However, this would also be true concerning divorce, adultery, and hatred where God very explicitly states that His standards are more demanding than what was traditionally taught in the Law.

So, to argue that Christian’s now have “freedom” to wear jewelry and makeup ignores that there was never a Law against them to begin with. The fact that Paul, Peter, James, and John felt it necessary to go out of their way to explain how such things don’t have a place in Christian living, just as the same men go out of their way to say the same about sexual immorality and the love of money, is very telling. If we use “Christian freedom” as an excuse to love the world and its lusts, possessions, and adornment we need to take a very critical at our own faith. It has nothing to do with the Law and everything to do with what it is to be like Christ who “has no stately form or majesty that we should look upon Him” (Is 53:2).

In Favor of Outward Adornment

Your cheeks are lovely with ornaments, your neck with strings of beads. We will make for you ornaments of gold with beads of silver (Song 1:10-11).

For He has clothed me with garments of salvation, He has wrapped me with a robe of righteousness, as a bridegroom decks himself with a garland, and as a bride adorns herself with her jewels (Is 61:10).

When he saw the ring and the bracelets on his sister’s wrists, and when he heard the words of Rebekah his sister, saying, “This is what the man said to me,” he went to the man; and behold, he was standing by the camels at the spring (Gen 24:30).

Now when the turn came for each young woman to go in to King Ahasuerus, after being twelve months under the regulations for the women, since this was the regular period of their beautifying, six months with oil of myrrh and six months with spices and ointments for women (Est 2:12).

“I also swore to you and entered into a covenant with you so that you became Mine,” declares the Lord God. “Then I bathed you with water, washed off your blood from you and anointed you with oil. I also clothed you with embroidered cloth and put sandals of porpoise skin on your feet; and I wrapped you with fine linen and covered you with silk. I adorned you with ornaments, put bracelets on your hands and a necklace around your neck. I also put a ring in your nostril, earrings in your ears and a beautiful crown on your head. Thus you were adorned with gold and silver, and your dress was of fine linen, silk and embroidered cloth. You ate fine flour, honey and oil; so you were exceedingly beautiful and advanced to royalty. Then your fame went forth among the nations on account of your beauty, for it was perfect because of My splendor which I bestowed on you,” declares the Lord God (Ezek 16:8-14).

“Lift up your eyes and look around; all of them gather together, they come to you. As I live,” declares the Lord“You will surely put on all of them as jewels and bind them on as a bride (Is 49:18).

This list exhaustively covers every positive mention of jewelry and makeup in the Bible. Did you catch what each one had in common? They all pertain to weddings. Yes, every single one. Strange coincidence, right?

Well, if we believe in God’s complete sovereignty, there are no such things as coincidences. We already know from Ephesians 5 that marriage is a picture of Christ and the Church. When we read the description of the New Jerusalem in Revelation 21 where the Church is a bride descending from heaven and her gates are covered with beautiful jewels, we can understand the context of all the positive descriptions of jewelry.

It all points to our union with Christ, the marriage supper of the Lamb! Christ is our Head, He is the Bridegroom, the Church is His bride. The adornment of brides points to a future reality in heaven.

To rip these verses out of context and twist them into some sort of approval of jewelry and in effect making them abrogate explicit teachings against such adornment, is not only inconsistent hermeneutically but terribly shallow.

Conclusion. So, now that you know what the Scripture teaches, how will you justify yourself? How are you any better than the “homosexual Christian” who thinks he is living out his Christian freedom? If we cannot trust the Scripture to adequately define what is good and bad, then every teaching against lying, murder, and what it means to love is completely incomprehensible.

Yes, “God sees not as man sees, for man looks at the outward appearance, but the Lord looks at the heart” (1 Sam 16:7) but remember “loving God means keeping his commandments, and his commandments are not burdensome” (1 John 5:13). Not going out of your way to wear a gold ring, have a fancy hairstyle, or wear makeup is not a burden. In fact, adorning oneself, the sin, is the burden!

Be honest with yourself, what shows greater obedience to God? With adornment, there are a lot of gray areas. However, we should be careful not to purposely contradict what the Scripture explicitly teaches. When we have no such teachings, we need to examine ourselves to see if we are doing what we feel pleases God, and not ourselves. If so, then we know we are doing the right thing and following God’s commandments.

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