No, Larry Solomon of BiblicalGenderRoles.com is Not Steven Anderson

So apparently there has been a rumor going around on reddit and other places that says I, Larry Solomon (aka BGR), am actually Pastor Steven Anderson.  Pastor Steven Anderson is the pastor of Faithful Word Baptist Church in Tempe, Arizona. He also founded the New Independent Fundamental Baptist movement in 2017.

Do Pastor Anderson and I have many things in common? Yes.  But we also have significant differences in our teachings as well. 

Beliefs Steven Anderson and I have in Common

What follows are several similarities between my teachings and beliefs and those of Pastor Steven Anderson.

1 – We agree on the most important doctrine in the Bible

Pastor Steve Anderson and I both believe salvation is by faith alone, through Christ alone.

“That if thou shalt confess with thy mouth the Lord Jesus, and shalt believe in thine heart that God hath raised him from the dead, thou shalt be saved.”

Romans 10:9 (KJV)

“Neither is there salvation in any other: for there is none other name under heaven given among men, whereby we must be saved.”

Acts 4:12 (KJV)

“For by grace are ye saved through faith; and that not of yourselves: it is the gift of God:  Not of works, lest any man should boast.”

Ephesians 2:8-9 (KJV)

2 – We agree on the doctrine of Biblical inerrancy

The second most important thing Pastor Anderson and I have in common is that we both believe the Bible is the inerrant and infallible Word of God and we are to live our lives by it:

“All scripture is given by inspiration of God, and is profitable for doctrine, for reproof, for correction, for instruction in righteousness”

2 Timothy 3:16 (KJV)

“But he answered and said, It is written, Man shall not live by bread alone, but by every word that proceedeth out of the mouth of God”

Matthew 4:4 (KJV)

3 – We both are Independent Fundamental Baptists (IFBs)

A third thing Pastor Anderson and I have in common is that we both come from IFB churches.

My parents raised me in IFB churches for most of my life.  And as an adult I attended and raised my children in IFB churches.  I attended and graduated from an IFB Christian school.  Some of my class mates in high school went on to become IFB pastors or IFB missionaries.

4 – We agree on Biblical gender roles

Pastor Steven Anderson is one of the few preachers out there that is actually still preaching the neglected doctrines of Biblical gender roles.

In a sermon he preached on March 22, 2015, entitled “Women Working in Light of the Bible”, Pastor Anderson made the following statements which very much align with my teachings based on the Biblical doctrines concerning gender roles:

“The main thing that I want to preach about this morning is the subject of women working outside the home, and the husband not providing and being the breadwinner of the home, but rather both husband and wife working. This has become the norm in our society today. It’s not biblical. It’s not God’s will. It’s not something that is the standard that the word of God says…

What the Bible teaches is that it’s man’s responsibility to provide for his him, and to provide for they of his own house, and that the woman’s job is to be a keeper at home, to be good, to be obedient to her husband, and to raise the children and guide the house and keep the house. I’ll submit to you that that is a full-time job.”

I have said from the beginning of establishing this blog back in 2014, that God had called me to speak on a particular area where I saw a great gap in churches today.   That gap exists even within many IFB churches today.  And that gap is regarding the teaching of Biblical gender roles.

Most churches today have abandoned the basic Biblical doctrine that marriage was created by God to be a picture of the relationship between God and his people Israel in the Old Testament and between Christ and his church in the New Testament.  We find this picture presented to us in the Scriptures below:

“Wives, submit yourselves unto your own husbands, as unto the Lord.  For the husband is the head of the wife, even as Christ is the head of the church: and he is the saviour of the body.  Therefore as the church is subject unto Christ, so let the wives be to their own husbands in every thing.

Husbands, love your wives, even as Christ also loved the church, and gave himself for it;  That he might sanctify and cleanse it with the washing of water by the word, That he might present it to himself a glorious church, not having spot, or wrinkle, or any such thing; but that it should be holy and without blemish.

So ought men to love their wives as their own bodies. He that loveth his wife loveth himself.  For no man ever yet hated his own flesh; but nourisheth and cherisheth it, even as the Lord the church

For we are members of his body, of his flesh, and of his bones.

For this cause shall a man leave his father and mother, and shall be joined unto his wife, and they two shall be one flesh.

This is a great mystery: but I speak concerning Christ and the church.

Nevertheless let every one of you in particular so love his wife even as himself; and the wife see that she reverence her husband.”

Ephesians 5:22-33 (KJV)

The Scriptures above tell us that it is “for this cause”, the cause of picturing the relationship of God to his people, of Christ to his Church, that we as men and women are to seek out marriage.   

In marriage, men are to picture God’s love through his leadership, provision, protection, teaching and discipline of his people.  And conversely, women are to depend upon the leadership, teaching, provision and protection of their husbands and submit to and reverence their husbands as the people of God are to do these things toward God.

Certainly, God places within us the drive for human companionship, sexual pleasure and the drive to have children as well and those are some of the other purposes for which God created marriage.  But we must never loose sight of the primary purpose for which God created marriage, and that was to picture the relationship between himself and his people. 

The sad truth is that most churches today teach an abridged and bastardized version of what the Scriptures state about marriage in Ephesians 5:22-33 as well as many other passages.  If they teach anything from the passage above, it is only to tell men that they are to “give themselves up” for and “cherish” their wives. They of course falsely interpret this as husbands needing to live to make their wives happy and worship the ground their wives walk on.

How many churches today teach that wives are to submit to their husbands “as unto the Lord”?

How many churches today teach “the husband is the head of the wife, even as Christ is the head of the church”?

How many churches today teach “as the church is subject unto Christ, so let the wives be to their own husbands in every thing”?

How many churches today teach wives to “reverence” their husbands?

The sad answer to all these questions above is very few.  But Pastor Anderson is one of the few left still preaching these Biblical doctrines concerning gender roles.

5 – We agree that LGBTQ behavior is wicked and an abomination before God

Like Pastor Anderson, I too believe that the behaviors of LGBTQ persons are wicked and an abomination before God.  The Scriptures are clear on this point:

“Thou shalt not lie with mankind, as with womankind: it is abomination.”

Leviticus 18:22 (KJV)

“The woman shall not wear that which pertaineth unto a man, neither shall a man put on a woman’s garment: for all that do so are abomination unto the Lord thy God.”

Deuteronomy 22:5 (KJV)

“For this cause God gave them up unto vile affections: for even their women did change the natural use into that which is against nature:  And likewise also the men, leaving the natural use of the woman, burned in their lust one toward another; men with men working that which is unseemly, and receiving in themselves that recompence of their error which was meet.”

Romans 1:26-27 (KJV)

Pastor Anderson and I also have in common that we both reject Dispensationalism and believe in a post tribulation rapture and we also both reject Calvinism. 

On the political front we both are avid Second Amendment advocates.

So yes, Pastor Steven Anderson and I have a lot in common, probably more than most people.   But we also have several major doctrinal disagreements.

Disagreements I Have with Steve Anderson

What follows are several disagreements I have with Steven Anderson what set me apart from him.

1 – I am not KJV Only and Steven Anderson is

The 1611 King James Bible was actually preceded by 9 English translations of the Bible before it.  Those earlier editions were the Wycliffe Bible (1382-1395), the Tyndale Bible (1523), the Coverdale’s Bible (1535), the Matthew’s Bible (1537), the Taverner’s Bible (1539), the Great Bible (1539), the Geneva Bible (1560), the Bishop’s Bible (1568) and Douay-Rheims (1610).

In addition to that, there were several revisions of the KJV and one of most commonly used today is the 1873 Scrivener edition.

When Steven Anderson and I both state that we believe in the inerrancy of the Bible, we are basing that belief on different versions of the Bible.   My belief is that the Bible is inerrant in its original writings in the Hebrew, Greek and Aramaic languages.  While no two ancient manuscripts of the Bible agree word for word, I believe that by taking the sum total of those ancient manuscripts that we can arrive at the complete Word of God.  And no doctrine of the Bible is lost based on the differences between these ancient manuscripts.

The position of Steven Anderson and those hold the “KJV Only” position is that the 1873 Scrivener edition of the KJV Bible is the inerrant and preserved Word of God by which all other translations whether in English or any other language before or after this edition must be judged as accurate.   They even believe that if the KJV has wording not found in any ancient manuscript (majority or minority texts), that God providentially wanted it to be there.

In contrast with Steven Anderson, I hold the “KJV Preference” position.  I quote from the KJV the majority of the time on my blog because I admire its literal translation and its historical value as a world-renowned version of the Bible.   But I also use the NASB from time to time because it is the most literal modern translation of the Bible in English and sometimes it is actually more literal to the original texts of the Bible than the KJV.

To those outside the Biblicist community of Christians, this might seem like a silly difference.  But I have seen many IFB churches split into different churches based on this KJV Only issue.

2 – The IFB church I attend is NOT part of the Steven Anderson’s New IFB church movement

IFB churches originated in the late 19th and early 20th century as a reaction to modernist views which had infiltrated many churches, including some Baptist churches in America.  It was also a reaction to the overreach of Baptist conventions like the Northern and Southern Baptist conventions. 

This is where the term “Independent Fundamental Baptist” came from.  “Independent” meaning a church not part of a convention (i.e. Southern Baptist Convention).  “Fundamental” as in a church that teaches the fundamentals of the faith such as the Trinity, salvation in Christ alone by faith alone, the inerrancy of the Bible, the reality of miracles and a belief in a literal 6-day creation account. Historically, IFBs have also been some of the strongest adherents to Biblical gender roles.  And finally Baptist, in holding to the historic Baptist beliefs of believers baptism by immersion, the autonomy of the local church, the priesthood of the believer, communion and baptism being the two ordinances of the church, only two church officers those of pastor and deacon and membership in the church being only those who have been made public professions faith and have received baptism by immersion.

Another core tenant of the IFB movement was an utter rejection of all forms of ecumenicalism and that is why until the last decade or so you would never see any IFB church doing joint ministries with any church except another IFB church.

KJV Onlyism was also a core tenant held by most IFB churches.

Many IFB churches also had added some additional rules not found in the Bible including prohibitions against using play cards, attending movie theaters, mixed bathing (going swimming with members of opposite), women wearing pants or shorts, smoking, drinking alcohol and gambling.   When rock and roll music came out, the IFB churches added prohibitions against their members listening to any music with a “rock beat”.

As of 2020, there are an estimated 6000 IFB churches in America.

The IFB churches I grew up in, as well as the IFB high school I attend, had all these rules.

As a teenager in my IFB Christian school, I had a great love of studying and discussing the Scriptures.  My history teacher once said to someone who asked about me- “I predict that Larry is going to be either a pastor, a programmer or a politician”.  He was referring to the passion he saw in me for the subjects of theology, computer programming and history.   In the end I chose the programming route, but I was able to teach Sunday school in IFB churches over the years and then I was able to start this ministry 6 years ago to further use my God-given gifts for the kingdom of God.  So, thanks to God and his providence, I have been able to pursue all three God given passions the Lord has laid on my heart since I was a young man.

But while I greatly admired the IFB legacy of a zeal for living by the Bible and its adherence to the fundamentals of the Christian faith, I came to reject some of the more traditional IFB beliefs which I found to be lacking in Scriptural support.

I started having some of these differences with my IFB upbringing as early as my late teens, while many others I came to in my early to mid-20s.    Some I did not come to till much later in life well into my 30s.

I came to reject the IFB traditional rules against using play cards, attending movie theaters, mixed bathing (going swimming with members of opposite), women wearing pants or shorts, smoking, drinking alcohol, gambling and listening to music with rock beat.  I found that all these rules lacked clear Scriptural support.  And the biggest change for me was coming to reject KJV Onlyism after an extensive study I did on the history of the making of the Bible when I was in my early 20s.

Eventually I knew I had to leave the IFB church I attended and move to one that was closer to my position on these issues and I found that in the IFB church I have now attended for more than a decade.  I still have some differences with my current Pastor, but far less than I would with some of these other IFB churches.

Just this last Sunday, my Pastor was telling me before the service that he found an old sermon that a previous pastor of our church had preached many decades ago against play cards.  He actually did a whole series against playing cards!  We both laughed.

My pastor and I agree that many of these older IFB rules are what Colossians 2:22 refers to as “the commandments and doctrines of men” rather than the commandments and doctrines of God.

When I first came out with my differences on these positions more than 20 years ago, some of my IFB friends called me “liberal” even though I still strongly believed in the fundamentals of the faith and Baptist church practices.  Eventually though, during those same two decades, many of my IFB friends, as well as their churches, changed their positions on some or all of these issues.

And that brings us to Pastor Steven Anderson.  Pastor Anderson did not agree with these moves away from traditional IFB rules of “holy living” and especially the move away from KJV Onlyism and this prompted him to create his “New IFB” church movement in 2017.

In 2020, there are about 30 IFB churches that have joined his movement.

3 – I don’t believe the government must have the death penalty for homosexuals, Steven Anderson does

Steven Anderson has said in so many words on more than one occasion that he would like to see gays put to death.  I am going to give him the benefit of the doubt that he means the government doing it, and not Christians running in the streets randomly killing gays.  He bases that belief on the following Old Testament passage:

“If a man also lie with mankind, as he lieth with a woman, both of them have committed an abomination: they shall surely be put to death; their blood shall be upon them”.

Leviticus 20:13 (KJV)

When we look at the Old Testament, we must be careful to separate the moral law from the civil penalties imposed for breaking God’s law under the theocracy of Israel which God instituted.  The New Testament church is not a physical nation, but rather a spiritual nation made up of believers from all physical nations of the world.  The church has no civil authority to execute punishments like these imposed for the theocracy of Israel.

So no, the United States government is not Biblically obliged to execute homosexuals as Steven Anderson believes.  But there is a difference between executing homosexuals, and approving of their behavior as the American government now does.

The Scriptures tell us the role of all civil governments:

“Submit yourselves to every ordinance of man for the Lord’s sake: whether it be to the king, as supreme;  Or unto governors, as unto them that are sent by him for the punishment of evildoers, and for the praise of them that do well”.

1 Peter 2:13-14 (KJV)

All civil governments have a God ordained duty to condemn behavior which God condemns in his Word.  God condemns activities like prostitution, premarital sex, incest, adultery, men having sexual relations with men and transgenderism.  Therefore, the civil government by the command of God has an obligation to punish these “evildoers”.

The punishments of course are not defined for any civil government outside the theocracy of Israel which no longer exists, therefore the punishments are left by God to the discretion of the civil authorities.

Someone might ask “Ok, so Leviticus 20:13 does not mean all civil governments for all time must execute men who have sex with other men.  But does it allow civil governments to do this if they wanted to?”  The answer to that question is YES. Now to the humanists (Christian or atheist) reading this, they may see this as a distinction without a difference. But it is a very big difference between me and Steven Anderson.  He believes the government is compelled to execute men who have sex with other men, while I believe the civil government is only compelled to condemn this action and may punish this behavior in other non-lethal ways.

4 – Steven Anderson and I would strongly disagree on Biblical sexology

If the people spreading rumors that I was Steve Anderson had really done their homework, and simply searched for “Steven Anderson” in the search bar of my blog, they would have found an article I wrote way back in 2015 refuting Steven Anderson’s position on what the Bible says about lust.  The article is entitled “What is the Lust of the Eyes in I John 2:16?”.   I had it slated for migrating over to my new blog BiblicalSexology.com, but I will leave it here for a while longer although I have turned off the comments for it.

I teach that Matthew 5:28’s prohibition against a man looking on a woman “to lust after her” can only be understood by the Biblical definition of lust.  The Biblical definition of lust is given to us in Romans 7:7 when the Apostle Paul states “for I had not known lust, except the law had said, Thou shalt not covet”.  After being told that lust is covetousness and a violation of the 10th commandment, we must then look to the 10th commandment.  In Exodus 20:17 the Bible states “Thou shalt not covet thy neighbour’s house, thou shalt not covet thy neighbour’s wife, nor his manservant, nor his maidservant, nor his ox, nor his ass, nor any thing that is thy neighbour’s”.

So, this leads us to the following conclusions regarding lust.  If lust was merely desire of any kind, then all real-estate transactions would be sinful.  You don’t buy someone’s house without first finding it desirable, and then going through the process to purchase it.   

What Exodus 20:17 teaches us is that covetousness (aka lust) is when we desire to use or take something or someone in an unlawful manner.  In the context of sexual lust, that would mean a man desiring to entice a woman into having sexual relations with him outside of marriage.  

Lust is not merely a man finding a woman sexually desirable.  It is not a man enjoying the view of a woman’s body or even him having sexual fantasies about her.  Lust is not normal heterosexual desire. 

It is only when we desire to entice someone into having sexual relations outside of marriage that we have committed the Biblical sin of lust in the sexual sense of the word.

Also, Steven Anderson and I would disagree on the subject of Biblical polygamy.  He does not see it as allowable for the New Testament age and I do.

For more on these topics regarding Biblical Sexology, please go to my new site BiblicalSexology.com.   And if you want to discuss these topics on sexuality, I would ask that you comment over on that blog on the relevant topics which you can easily find right on the home page of that site.

Conclusion

I am not Pastor Steven Anderson of Faithful Word Baptist Church in Tempe, Arizona. 

Anderson would call me a “KJV denier” for not being KJV Only.  

Anderson would call me a “worldly man” because I play Texas Holdem with my friends and family, because I love movies and have a massive DVD and Blu-ray collection of sci-fi, horror movies and action films.  Because I let my daughter wear all kinds of pants and shorts and because I let my daughter go “mixed bathing” (aka swimming at beaches). 

Anderson would also consider me an “ecumenical” because I associate online with other conservative Bible believing Christians of all denominations who embrace the Biblical doctrines of gender roles.  Pentecostals, Lutherans, Methodists, Presbyterians and Catholics – Oh my!

And if he ever read my views on BiblicalSexology.com he would deny that I am even a Christian, let alone an IFB Christian.

So no, I am not Pastor Steven Anderson.  Nor would I encourage any of my children, family or friends to join his church or any of the new IFB churches.  

Why nudity is not always shameful for a Christian

Why nudity is not always shameful

Is nudity always shameful? Some would say yes. They could point to many passages of Scripture that associated nudity with shame. I believe that as a general rule, God meant for us as human beings to be clothed. He did not intend for us to just go naked everywhere we went, whether it is for shopping at the store or going about the daily business of our lives.

There is a time and place for everything under heaven

“To every thing there is a season, and a time to every purpose under the heaven” – Ecclesiastes 3:1(KJV)

Are there times and places for nudity? Some might say there is never a time for nudity (outside of nudity between a husband and wife in marriage), but the Scriptures show otherwise:

Job’s humility before the Lord

“Then Job arose, and rent his mantle, and shaved his head, and fell down upon the ground, and worshipped, And said, Naked came I out of my mother’s womb, and naked shall I return thither: the Lord gave, and the Lord hath taken away; blessed be the name of the Lord. In all this Job sinned not…” – Job 1:20-22a (KJV)

Job – after losing his children and everything he had, tore his clothes fell to the ground naked before the Lord. This a great act of humility – and the Scriptures are clear, he did not sin in becoming naked in this instance.

David’s praises the Lord naked

“14 And David danced before the Lord with all his might; and David was girded with a linen ephod… And as the ark of the Lord came into the city of David, Michal Saul’s daughter looked through a window, and saw king David leaping and dancing before the Lord; and she despised him in her heart…

20 Then David returned to bless his household. And Michal the daughter of Saul came out to meet David, and said, How glorious was the king of Israel to day, who uncovered himself to day in the eyes of the handmaids of his servants, as one of the vain fellows shamelessly uncovereth himself!

21 And David said unto Michal, It was before the Lord, which chose me before thy father, and before all his house, to appoint me ruler over the people of the Lord, over Israel: therefore will I play before the Lord. 22 And I will yet be more vile than thus, and will be base in mine own sight: and of the maidservants which thou hast spoken of, of them shall I be had in honour.

23 Therefore Michal the daughter of Saul had no child unto the day of her death.” – II Samuel 6:14 & 16 & 20-23(KJV)

David danced for the Lord and worshiped him naked. His wife, Michal, was angry and jealous of his dancing in front of other women being naked. God blessed David for this, and he cursed Michal with barrenness for her jealousy.

God orders Isaiah to preach naked

“At the same time spake the Lord by Isaiah the son of Amoz, saying, Go and loose the sackcloth from off thy loins, and put off thy shoe from thy foot. And he did so, walking naked and barefoot.” – Isaiah 20:2(KJV)

While Isaiah preached naked as a sign to Egypt and upon Ethiopia that they would be conquered by Assyria and brought back naked and barefoot, the issue is that God did sanction nakedness here.

So we have three distinct instances of nakedness that were clearly blessed and condoned by God. Job’s nakedness in his humility toward God, David’s nakedness in his worship of God and Isaiah’s nakedness in preaching in the Word of God.

All three instances of Biblical nudity have some things in common

All three of these instances, besides being condoned by God, have people willingly becoming naked. All three of these instances also have people becoming naked for a specific purpose, and not nudity was not their normal way of life.

Nakedness is like marriage

God designed man and woman for marriage. Specifically, God designed woman for man, and he created marriage as the protection for that physical, emotional and spiritual relationship. But God makes exceptions to his general purpose that men and women should marry. He calls some men and women to celibacy, he gives them this gift of celibacy for his service.

In the same way as marriage, we can see throughout the Scriptures that God’s meant as a general rule for people to be clothed. God clothed Adam and Eve in the Garden, he designed our bodies to be clothed (as our bodies are not meant to brave the elements). He often speaks of nakedness as a shame, but yet we see three instances in Scripture where God sanctions nakedness.

Biblical Principles for Clothing and Nakedness

When we compare these instances with the rest of Scripture, I believe we can establish these principles:

  1. As a general rule, God wants people to be clothed. In most circumstances, to be naked is to be shamed.
  2. We are not to uncover the nakedness of anyone involuntarily, or for the purposes of having sex with someone we ought not to be having sex with (anyone outside of lawful marriage).
  3. Most instances of nakedness being a shame in the Bible are of involuntary nakedness such as being captured in war and being stripped, a woman being raped, or someone being in poverty and losing one’s clothes. A person having their clothing taken from them against their will is shameful and disgraceful.
  4. In some instances, when clothing is removed voluntarily, and with specific purpose for limited time, it is not a shame or sinful to do so.

One application of these principles would be – it is not wrong for a woman to disrobe for her physician(even if he is a man). This is temporary nudity, for a specific purpose and there is no sin in this.  This is our third article in the series “Biblical Nudity”. In upcoming articles we will apply these principles for clothing and nudity to more real life situations.

See these other related posts in this series “Biblical Nudity”:

Why did nudity become shameful after the fall?

Why God meant for people to be clothed

Is it wrong for Christians to pose nude, or paint and photograph nudes?

Why God meant for people to be clothed

Why God meant for people to be clothed

I believe that it was God’s intention for man and woman to be clothed whether or not Adam and Eve ever sinned – the proof is that we will be clothed in the eternal state.

Humans have no natural protection from elements

We as human beings in our natural state are exposed, and thus we are meant to be clothed. Clothing protects our skin from extreme temperatures (hot and cold), and from being cut and scraped. This why we wear clothing and shoes.

Symbolic Purposes for Clothing

It is clear from the Bible that God loves symbols. Marriage while have practical purposes in this life, is also a symbol of the eternal relationship between God and his people. Yeast was symbolic of sin. Boaz redeeming Ruth was a symbol of Christ’s redemption of all mankind. There are countless symbolisms in Scripture, and clothing is no exception. While clothing has practical purposes that we have previously pointed out, clothing also has symbolic purposes.

Being clothed separates mankind from all other creatures

God could have designed people with a super durable and protective exterior to the extent that we did not need clothing, but he did not. The reason was that he wanted to separate us out as special from all his other creations. Every other creature on this planet does not need clothing, but they are given custom clothing by God himself. Birds have feathers, bears, dogs and cats have fur. Some creatures have scales, while others have extremely thick skin. Turtles have shells.

In the Scriptures God made a man to be like an animal for sinning against him:

“The same hour was the thing fulfilled upon Nebuchadnezzar: and he was driven from men, and did eat grass as oxen, and his body was wet with the dew of heaven, till his hairs were grown like eagles’ feathers, and his nails like birds’ claws.”

Daniel 4:33(KJV)

King Nebuchadnezzar sinned against God, and God made him go about as an animal for a time, because of his sin. The phrase “his body was wet with the dew of heaven” is acknowledged by many commentators as meaning he was naked. He replaced his clothing with excess body hair, in the same fashion as an animal, or more specifically like eagle’s feathers.

As we saw in the first section, the temporal reasons for clothing are practical ones.

Clothing is symbol of righteousness, while nakedness is symbol of shame

In Revelation chapter 19 we see that clothing is a symbol of the righteousness of the saints:

Job shows us that his righteousness was a clothing:

“I put on righteousness, and it clothed me: my judgment was as a robe and a diadem.” – Job 29:14(KJV)

John tells us in the book of Revelation that clothing was symbolic of the righteousness of the saints:

“Let us be glad and rejoice, and give honour to him: for the marriage of the Lamb is come, and his wife hath made herself ready. And to her was granted that she should be arrayed in fine linen, clean and white: for the fine linen is the righteousness of saints.” – Revelation 19:7-8(KJV)

In Revelation chapter 3 we see that clothing covers the shame of nakedness:

“I counsel thee to buy of me gold tried in the fire, that thou mayest be rich; and white raiment, that thou mayest be clothed, and that the shame of thy nakedness do not appear; and anoint thine eyes with eyesalve, that thou mayest see.” – Revelation 3:18(KJV)

Clothing is a symbol of salvation:

“I will greatly rejoice in the Lord, my soul shall be joyful in my God; for he hath clothed me with the garments of salvation, he hath covered me with the robe of righteousness, as a bridegroom decketh himself with ornaments, and as a bride adorneth herself with her jewels.” – Isaiah 61:10(KJV)

While clothing has many positive symbolisms in the Bible, nakedness is often associated with poverty or shame:

Christ spoke about nakedness as symbol of poverty:

“For I was an hungred, and ye gave me meat: I was thirsty, and ye gave me drink: I was a stranger, and ye took me in: Naked, and ye clothed me: I was sick, and ye visited me: I was in prison, and ye came unto me.” – Matthew 25:35-36(KJV)

The scripture also see nakedness as symbolic of shame:

“Behold, I come as a thief. Blessed is he that watcheth, and keepeth his garments, lest he walk naked, and they see his shame.” – Revelation 16:15(KJV)

Conclusion

In this third second article in our “Biblical Nudity” series, we have established why God always meant for mankind to be clothed (even if the fall had never happened). We can see that unlike other creatures in God’s creation, man was not made with a natural and durable covering to brave the elements and protect his body from damage. We can see there is great symbolism in man being clothed, and it separates and distinguishes us from all the rest of God’s creation on earth.

Clothing, for the most part, has a very positive symbolism in Scripture being symbolic of things like righteousness, salvation and prosperity. Nakedness on the other hand, is often associated with shame, disgrace and poverty.

In our next article in this series, we will discuss “Why nudity is not always shameful”.

See these other related posts in this series “Biblical Nudity”:

Why did nudity become shameful after the fall?

Is it wrong for Christians to pose nude, or paint and photograph nudes?

Why did nudity become shameful after the fall?

Whynudityshame

Why did nudity become shameful after the fall of Adam and Eve in the Garden of Eden? Was it because they realized what sexual attraction was? Was it because of the potential for lust that God clothed them? Or were there other reasons that God clothed Adam and Eve, and nakedness became a shame after Eden?

There was no shame about nakedness before the fall

The Bible says this about Adam and Eve right after they were created by God:

“And they were both naked, the man and his wife, and were not ashamed.” – Genesis 2:25(KJV)

Shame felt for the first time

In Genesis 2 – God had told Adam not to eat from the Tree of the knowledge of Good and Evil. Then we read in Genesis 3 that sometime after God created Eve for Adam, and brought them together in the first marriage, Eve was deceived by the Devil. He promised her this “knowledge” that God was hiding from her and told her that she and Adam could become gods by eating the fruit.

Eve ate the fruit, convinced her husband to eat it and the Bible says:

And the eyes of them both were opened, and they knew that they were naked; and they sewed fig leaves together, and made themselves aprons And they heard the voice of the Lord God walking in the garden in the cool of the day: and Adam and his wife hid themselves from the presence of the Lord God amongst the trees of the garden… And the Lord God called unto Adam, and said unto him, Where art thou? And he said, I heard thy voice in the garden, and I was afraid, because I was naked; and I hid myself. And he said, Who told thee that thou wast naked? Hast thou eaten of the tree, whereof I commanded thee that thou shouldest not eat?” – Genesis 3:8-11

The Bible tells us “the eyes of them both were opened, and they knew that they were naked” and they sewed leaves together to cover their nakedness. They instantly knew after eating the fruit that they were naked, and needed to be clothed.

The reason for Adam and Eve’s shame

The source of Adam and Eve’s shame was not some new knowledge about sex or lust as is many times presented by various theologians and writers. The source of their shame was not even knowledge of evil, but it was in fact a new and expanded knowledge of what is good.

What is often overlooked is the fact that the tree was not just a tree of the knowledge of “evil”, but also of “good” (Genesis 2:17 & 3:22). Most people only think of the tree giving Adam and Eve knowledge of sin and evil, but the fact is, it also gave them a more complete knowledge of what is good.

When we see little one and two year olds running around the house naked and unashamed, we call them “innocent”. But we know Biblically that children are born sinners, and they sin just as adults do, just in different ways. Little children lie, steal and hurt one another. What we really mean when we call that naked two year old running around “innocent” is, that they are “ignorant” of the fact that as human beings we are not meant to be naked at all times, but we are meant to be clothed.

Just as babies and one and two year olds are ignorant of their nakedness, and the need for clothing, so too Adam and Eve were ignorant of this need for clothing as well, this why they felt the shame they did about their nakedness.

If nakedness were truly a symbol of innocence, then when we get to heaven and when we dwell with God for eternity, we would again be naked. But look at what God says in the book of Revelation regarding clothing:

“After this I beheld, and, lo, a great multitude, which no man could number, of all nations, and kindreds, and people, and tongues, stood before the throne, and before the Lamb, clothed with white robes, and palms in their hands;” – Revelation 7:9(KJV)

In the eternal state, we will be clothed in white, not naked. We will once again be completely innocent from sin, yet we will not be naked.

Who told you that?

What was God’s first response to Adam and Eve’s knowledge of their nakedness?

“Who told thee that thou wast naked?” – Genesis 3:11(KJV)

Let me give an example to illustrate from a parents point of view. Imagine you have a 6 or 7 year old child, and they find out at school from some kid in their class about sex. Any parent would reasonably ask “Who told you about that? It’s not that the knowledge of sex is bad thing, it is simply that it was not yet time for the child to have this knowledge. This is exactly what happened in Eden.

Make no mistake, God was angry at the way Adam and Eve gained the knowledge of their nakedness through sin, and not in the way he intended for them to find out, from him and in his perfect time.

God did not clothe Adam and Eve because of the presence of sin. He did not cloth them because of some new knowledge about sex or sexual lust.

He clothed them, because they were always meant to be clothed.

This has been the first article in our series on “Biblical Nudity”. In this first post we talked about the shamefulness of nudity, in other posts in this series we will cover topics such as “Why God meant for people to be clothed”, “Why nudity is not always shameful”, “Can Christians pose for and paint nudes?” and other related topics to Biblical nudity.