Principle of Separation

I have come to the firm belief that every area of my life must be based on the foundation of biblical principles. What I choose to wear must be guided by the principles laid out in God’s Word. As a Child of the King, I am responsible to find the principles God lays out and apply them to my everyday life. In the area of dress God is far from silent and has graciously given me the principles needed to know how I am to dress.
As a Christian, it is of utmost concern to me that my life fulfills two main purposes.

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First, I want my life to point others to Christ.

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Secondly, I want my lifestyle to give a proper and accurate view of God.
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These two premises should be the driving force behind every decision a Christian makes. Is what I am doing allowing others to see Christ – and as they see Christ, is it an accurate picture of who He is and what He values?


Our society is moving away from moral principles at a faster pace than ever before. Thus, living as a Christian in this era allows me awesome opportunities to show Christ and name the name of Christ in the way that I dress as a woman. It has become obvious to me that the farther our society moves away from moral principles the brighter my light shines when I apply biblical principles to my everyday life ( Matthew 5:14-16). I think that is what has saddened me the most when I see Christians choosing to lay aside this issue and deem it non important – they are forfeiting a divinely appointed opportunity to show Christ to a lost and dying world.


As I have read the Bible I have seen over and over again that there is a principle of separation that lines the pages throughout the entire Book. Regardless of whether I read in the Old Testament or in the New Testament, I find this principle of separation given to those who love the Lord. (Gen 13:9. Ezra 10:11, II Cor 6:17) God has always called His people to be different than the heathen. I have come to believe that if the world does not see a difference in the way I live my life they will not realize that there is a difference.
As I look at the way I dress and the pieces in which I choose to dress I have to bring my choices under this principle of separation. I have found that there are two areas that my clothing needs to be separate. First, my clothing needs to be separate from the world. In other words, it needs to be free from worldliness. God’s desire for his people is that they look different from the world and the world’s choices. The way I dress should be different from the main line of society. (Deut 14:2, IPt 2:9)


My dress should be distinctly separate. There are those who think that this issue of dress comes down only to a dress vs. pant issue. I must say that there is a danger there. For, there are skirts or dresses that are not distinctly separate from the world. It is unfortunate that there are those who dress worldly thinking that everything is OK because they are in a dress or a skirt. My attire must be distinctly separate from a worldly look or worldly influence. If I have a hard time going to the store – or being out in public in dress that defines me as different then I have a heart problem and am lacking in my love for the Savior.



However, this issue of separation must not be left just to this issue of worldliness. The Bible clearly teaches me that God created men and women to be distinctly different (Gen 1:27, Gen 22:5). So the second area of separation is in the area of gender distinctiveness. I must make sure that my clothing is distinctively free from looking like the apparel of a man – free in any way of masculinity. I want that when people look at me, even from a distance, they can tell that I am a lady.



When gender distinctiveness is valued in my dress you will find that anything I wear a man would be ashamed to have upon his body. It seems odd to me that the Christian world has come to accept the feminist agenda that it is OK for a woman to wear the apparel of a man, however, if we reversed the tables we would not be caught dead allowing a man within the membership of our church to parade around in a dress! There seems to be a definite double standard here. ( I will cover this in more depth in a subsequent post in this series.)

One of the prettiest pictures I have seen was that of a Mother and her daughter across a lake. Her husband had taken the picture from the other side of the lake – their backs turned from him. In the picture, you could make out the silhouette of mother and child – and you knew the child was with her mother because you could see her dress blowing in the wind. Although the image was a mere silhouette she was distinctively feminine.



The principle of separation has given me the understanding of knowing just how God desires me as a woman to dress. This principle has allowed me the security of knowing how my daughters need to be trained in their dress. How thankful I am, that God does not leave us without the answers to our questions. He cares how I dress, what I choose to dress in, and has clearly showed me through His Word the answers to these questions.


The question is not ‘Does God care what I wear?” but rather, Am I willing to apply biblical principles and have my dress in line with how God desires for me to dress?”

12 comments:

Susan said...

Great first article on this - I'm assuming (and hoping!) there's more. I agree 100% with what you've said here. Getting a Facebook account has really opened my eyes to how few people take this issue seriously, including old friends with whom we've been in ministry that I assumed had the same standards we did. Pictures on FB say otherwise, though. Either they have changed or they never had the standards to start with. I still love them dearly and have sweet fellowship with them, but puzzled about the dress standards being so different than what I thought.

CONNIE'S THOUGHTS FROM THE HEART said...

Great Post!!! I agree with each word. Thank you. connie

Martie said...

Susan,

I too have felt the same way you have as I have looked through pictures of my friends on FB. It is even more discouraging to look at many of the info pages and see the movies they endorse. Much prayer must be made! Holiness must be brought back to the forefront - our future generations are depending upon it.

Yes, there are more posts to this series - looks like 6 or 7 in all.


THanks for your kind comments.
~Martie

Martie said...

Connie,

Thanks for taking time to comment. You are always a blessing to me.
~Martie

Lori said...

Martie, I am so glad you commented on my blog so I could find you! Love this article. I appreciate the graciousness, yet firmness you use in addressing this issue. That's exactly how we should stand as Christians...gracious, yet firm because God said it. :) Thank you so much!

~~Deby said...

I tooooo am looking forward to this series..yes..FB sure has revealed to me things I wish I had never known about people...so blatant...what they READ, watch..etc....I am not sure that FB is such a good thing....still haven't decided...I try not to get on my FB very much for that reason..am I really supposed to know that much about soooo many people...hmmmm...I am speaking to myself here....
Martie, press on..we all need this..you always have a way of speaking the truth in love..
deby

Lisa's Blessed A Latte said...

Very encouraging post...Were a family of 7 too!! Can't wait to come back and read more...

Sharon said...

Martie,
I'd like to ask you and the other ladies here to please pray for me. I was convicted of going dresses/skirts only as I stated in a blog post and did it. However, since part 2 of my post and all the hospital stays Carissa had last year, I reverted back to pants. This has been a struggle for me for many reasons. One...my husband sees nothing wrong with me wearing pants as long as they are not skin tight. My clothing covers me very well, but I feel deep in my heart the Lord calling me to keep a higher standard. Unfortunately, I was not raised in dresses only. Two...we live in the country and when I was wearing skirts every day, Hubby was reluctant to ask me to help him do anything that might get my clothes dirty. These are all petty excuses, and since I have been sitting on the fence regarding this, the Lord has been gently nudging me by sending new readers who happened to find and comment on my first post about going all dresses. Then you post about the subject. I'm not spiritually blind and know what's going on, but really need your prayers to help me finally make the decision I know I must make. It is very humbling to confess this weakness and struggle I have going on inside me. Maybe your encouragements will also help someone else sitting on the same fence.

Martie said...

Sharon,

"God resisteth the proud; but giveth grace to the humble." How much grace He is bestowing upon you - for your humble and honest heart in your comment. God bless you!

Making a change this big - is not always easy. I will be praying for you!

I am planning on doing my last post on the theme of "30 Days to a Modest Closet" - with tips on how to do it - where to find modest clothes. I will also cover issues on those 'different' situation like working or exercising - what to do and what to wear. Stay tuned! This series is for you!! :)

Feel free to email me personally and I would be willing to send you my phone# and we could chat if you would like to.

God's calling is His enabling. I have come to the conclusion that dressing modestly has more to do with my faith in believing that this is what God want me to do - then it does in the actual clothes. There have been many times when I did not know where to find clothing - or how to make it. It has been a test of my faith to pray and tell the Lord that if this is what He wants for me and for my girls - that I needed Him to point the way and give answers. It has grown my faith to see Him provide everytime!! I know He will do the same for you.

God Bless you,
~Martie

Anonymous said...

Interesting comments on FB. I too had an account. After talking with my Pastor's Wife I deleted it. It was hard for me to see things of people whom I thought I had more in common with.Morally that is.

Joanne'

Sheryl said...

Great thoughts Martie! More women should be teaching these Bible principles to their own daughters. Too many are defending their reasons for following the world's standards and few care to be separate from the world...unto Godliness and holiness. I'm with you on this!

Sharon said...

Martie,
Thank you! I will be reading ALL of your articles on this and looking forward to them!!! I have found when the Lord lays something on my heart to write about and I don't understand why, it's because someone needs it. Sometimes it's me and sometimes it's someone else. This time, your articles are for me and I hope it will touch someone else's heart as well. :)