“I desire then that in every place the men should pray, lifting holy hands without anger or quarreling; likewise, the 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 Timothy 2:8-10, ESV).
God wanted Paul to write these words to a young pastor named Timothy who was serving the church in the city of Ephesus. Contained within Ephesus was the temple of the goddess Artemis, which housed multiple temple prostitutes who adorned themselves immodestly in order to seduce and lure the men into the temple to worship Artemis through sex.
Some women in the church in Ephesus were conforming themselves to the culture of Ephesus and dressing and adorning themselves much like the women in Artemis’ temple. If you saw women from the Ephesus Church and Artemis’ Temple, it would have been difficult for you to distinguish Christian women from temple prostitutes. Paul and Timothy warned the church about this in these verses. These verses are not so much laws against wearing gold and pearls but were principles for godly living — being set apart from the culture around us in order to bring glory to God.
The principles we find here for young men and women are:
• Lives characterized by prayerfulness in the men and women,
• Modest dress that is not conformed to cultural patterns,
• And spending habits that consider the poor of the city instead of elaborate spending on themselves.
For our purposes in the Denver Baptist Church student ministry (The PULSE Student Ministry), we want to focus on the discipleship of young men and women. Paul’s point in First Timothy is that oftentimes our actions and dress can detract and even hinder the prayers of godly men and women. Therefore PULSE offers a “Modesty Policy” in the spirit of the Scriptures to help our young women and men in the area of dress. Remember, all of this is done with an attitude of love. Our passion is to be absolutely Christ-honoring in all that we do, including our dress. We will stand firm on adhering to Christ’s modesty norms found in the Scriptures, not cultural norms. Below are the guidelines for our student ministry:
· Shirts should be Christ-honoring and not 1) too low cut 2) too short exposing any of the stomach, 3) should contain no vulgar or offensive slogans or language
· All undergarments should be completely covered (including bra straps and guys’ boxers)
· No short shorts (at least as long as your fingertips held straight down)
· No short skirts
· Bathing Suits:
- Girls may wear one-piece swimsuits that are modest (not low cut or with large holes in them exposing too much skin!)
- Girls may wear tankinis, only if the top and bottom meet in the middle with no stomach showing, giving the appearance of a one piece
- Girls may not wear bikinis. This also includes wearing a tight tank top/shirt over a bikini
- Guys, no Speedos(!) or boxers showing under board shorts or trunks
- When not in the water, guys and girls need to be covered by t-shirts (for guys and girls) and shorts and/or a cover-up (for girls)
- Just an FYI…all bathing suit events will be equipped with oversized, super-ugly T-shirts in the event they are needed!!
Thank you for your cooperation with this established policy.
~The PULSE Leadership Team~