Due to the fall into sin, nudity has remained something to be covered. In the time in which we live, this truth is not obeyed. Nudity and immorality are celebrated as art and entertainment, and are promoted through fashion. For God’s people, nudity has its place only in marriage.

3 pages.


The issue of nudity is longstanding. Years ago it gained the spotlight locally when the drama department of Bakersfield College put on the production, “Hair.” It was given a lot of publicity by the press and other news media. Sad to say, there is an increasing trend toward permissiveness, immorality and nudity in both dress and practice. Newspapers, magazines, television and the internet portray blatant sex and immorality openly and boldly. These become the means to entertain a pleasure-mad world. The most intimate of human relationships is dragged out for public display. The graffiti scrawled on bathroom walls has become the stock in trade of playwrights, movie and television producers.

The mass media has made illicit sex both attractive and common-place and divorce and adultery perfectly acceptable. Both day and night-time soaps have, and are, paving the way for a new morality where pre-marital sex, illegitimate pregnancies, unfaithfulness, divorce, multiple marriages, and homosexuality are acceptable and even the normal way of life. They have developed a capability of justifying the portrayal of everything from frank love scenes to nudity, to sexual perversion. My, but haven’t we become mature, now that we can gaze without embarassment upon repulsively erotic scenes that violate every traditional standard of decency! All the while the viewing public becomes more and more desensitized and immune as Hollywood promotes its views and standards.

The present extremes in openness of sexual behavior and increasing nudity are the result of semi-nudity that has always infected the fashion and activity of mankind. Overlooked is the fact that sexy dress and nudity was almost always associated with the prostitute who used it to stir up the sexual lusts of men. Such a prostitute attempts to make sin attractive. Proverbs, chapters 5 & 7, are very much to the point and I encourage you to read them.

It is quite interesting that the word pornography comes from two Greek words: porn, meaning harlot or prostitute; graphos, meaning to write. Pornography then is licentious writings, nude paintings and portraits describing or depicting the prostitute.

What used to be forbidden is now not only condoned, but promoted in our lawless and permissive society. In our present climate, nudity and pornography are called art. Extra-marital sex is considered meaningful and healthy Business uses sex-appeal to catch the eye and capture the dollar of its customers. Sun-bathing women drop their tops at the beach as part of their new rights. The headline of a daily newspaper stated, “Nude dancers bare up to male stares.” One of the girls who was interviewed in the nude said that she enjoyed her naked performance. “I really like it when they applaud,” she said. The article went on to say, “Two detectives testified that they were in attendance at the performance and witnessed girls providing patrons with a gynecologist’s view of female private parts as they twisted about on rug-covered stands in front of mirrors. The defense contended that such displays, if presented with taste and a certain amount of artistry, should no longer be deemed obscene.”

There are many places and parks throughout the world where nudity is legalized as a health fad or to entertain people or for beauty contests. Most of the performers are female. The result is that the feminist movement starts to complain and demands to see the male nude and they have gotten what they want. Male strippers/prostitutes are also now commonplace.

The bikini and string suits have introduced nudism to the beaches. In many beach communities, lawyers are in court defending nudity on the beaches and even on university campuses such as the “naked guy” at the University of California, Berkley. All of this is now being regarded as freedom of expression as was also put forward in defense of the nude scene in the Bakersfield College production.

The push for nudity goes on in spite of police reports that such exposure leads to an increase in sexual crimes. Even in the public schools, teachers complain that sexy dress is a temptation and an invitation for sexual assault.

Nudism and permissiveness in our present culture did not happen overnight. Satan has worked slowly and systematically to change morality into immorality. He knows that fashion has much to do with the life style of the human race. He knows that sexy dress and nudity will arouse sexual desire.

Perhaps not all women who wear today’s daring fashions intend this kind of sinful reaction, although it is difficult to understand why else they would want to wear such or bare their bodies. Even so, the devil uses the spirit of permissiveness to prepare for more nudity. The fashion makers take into account the spirit of the times and they know that sexy apparel sells. If anyone profits from the total depravity of the human race, they certainly do.

This kind of immorality is not new and such a decline in morals has happened before, and we should take note of what happens to a nation where such immorality is committed and condoned. I refer to Leviticus, chapter 18, which catalogues all the unlawful lusts that result from nudity after which God declares to His people:

Do not defile yourselves with any of these things; for by all these the nations are defiled, which I am casting out before you. For the land is defiled … and the land vomits out its inhabitants.vv. 24, 25

Nations that defile themselves in immorality and lawlessness have never survived.

But is not the human body a thing of beauty? Is it not a creation of God Himself? God did indeed create man and woman and He saw all that He had made in them, including their sexuality and natural desires, and He said that it all was very good, for they bore His image of holiness and righteousness. As they came from the hand of God, they were naked and were not ashamed or guilt-ridden, for they were pure. They did not need clothing to shelter them from the cold or heat or the impurity of sin. Their minds were pure and holy. They appeared before God and met and spoke with Him in their naked state without fear or shame.

Suddenly, things changed radically. Sin came into the lives of Adam and Eve and their world, and they discovered that they were naked and were afraid to appear before God. They immediately realized that the consequences of their sin had destroyed their holiness and purity, and depravity now filled their minds. Their hearts were no longer tuned to righteousness. Their eyes were opened to know the evil that had come upon them to their shame and grief. And then they took some fig leaves to make themselves aprons and cover their nakedness. But this was not good enough for God. So God Himself clothed the first man and woman with coats of skin (cf. Genesis 3:21).

From all of this it becomes evident that even within holy wedlock there must be modesty and self-control. When sin came into the world, nakedness did not become art, but something to be covered. In Genesis 9 we are told how Ham was cursed for looking upon the nakedness of his father and then telling his brothers about it. But the Lord blessed Shem and Japheth who covered the nakedness of their father (cf. vv. 20ff.).

God declares in Habakkuk 2:15:

Woe to him who gives drink to his neighbor, pressing him to your bottle even to make him drunk, that you may look on his nakedness.

The only proper place for nakedness is within the marriage bond and bed. Apart from that, it is most often mentioned in the Bible as something to be ashamed of as adultery and prostitution. God says: “But fornication and all uncleanness or covetousness, let it not even be named among you, as is fitting for saints; neither filthiness, nor foolish talking, nor coarse jesting, which are not fitting, but rather giving of thanks. For this you know, that no fornicator, unclean person, nor covetous man, who is an idolater, has any inheritance in the kingdom of Christ and God” (Ephesians 5:3-5). We must not walk as the heathen in “lasciviousness” (cf. 1 Peter 4:3). Lasciviousness, according to Webster, is “looseness, freedom from all moral control, a tendency to excite lust and promote irregular indulgences.” Again, the Scriptures teach: “Therefore put to death your members which are on the earth: sexual immorality, impurity, passion, evil desire, and covetousness, which is idolatry” (Colossians 3:5).

According to the Heidelberg Catechism in its exposition of the seventh commandment, “all unchastity is accursed of God, and we should therefore loathe it with our whole heart, and live chastely and modestly, whether in holy wedlock or in single life. Since both our body and soul are temples of the Holy Spirit, it is His will that we keep both pure and holy; therefore, He forbids all unchaste actions, gestures, words, thoughts, desires, and whatever may entice thereto” (108 & 109).

David’s fall into the sin of adultery began in his heart when sexual desire was aroused as he watched Bathsheba bathing herself. The act followed the desire of his heart and mind.

As we listen to the Word of God, we find that nudity is not an art, but an abomination to the Lord. It is an abomination to the Lord to be dressed as a prostitute and to advertise the body so as to catch the eye of men and cause them to sin. To display and expose those human organs which are related to reproduction is not artistic but immoral. Even the so-called semi-nudity of the exposure of the female breast is shameful and a falling away from the normal soundness and purity demanded by God. The Scriptures are clear: “For you are bought at a price; therefore, glorify God in your body and in your spirit, which are God’s” (1 Corinthians 6:20). “As obedient children, not conforming yourselves to the former lusts, as in your ignorance; but as He who called you is holy, you also be holy in all your conduct” (1 Peter 1:14, 15). “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” (1 John 2:15). The Lord calls His people to decency and modesty and has given high standards of living to His born-again children. They have a different destiny and a new order to abstain from worldly lusts which war against the soul: “Therefore, if anyone is in Christ, he is a new creation; old things have passed away; behold, all things have become new” (2 Corinthians 5:17). The Christian says, “I have been crucified with Christ; it is no longer I who live, but Christ lives in me; and the life which I now live in the flesh live by faith in the Son of God, who loved me and gave Himself for me” (Galatians 2:20). A fruit of the Spirit is self-control (cf. Galatians 5:23).

Our bodies are not meant for immorality but for the glory of God. Are we grateful for the salvation that God has given us? If not, we had better examine ourselves and ask if we are a new creation? If we are branches of the vine, Jesus Christ, then our lives will be bearing fruit in Him (cf. John 15:1-17). As His redeemed people, we will follow Him as our example in all holy living.

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