The Believer And His Clothing - Tracing The History

The benefit of clothing cannot be over accentuated especially in the life of a believer; it has a rendering in the spiritual and physical connotation of his life.  Clothing can be seen as the thing that induces the first impression someone can have while engaging a believer.  Therefore, it is apt to say that clothing is the first yardstick to use to ascertain the genuineness of someone who claims to be a believer. So the style and manner of clothing someone adorns makes it easy for another to glance at him and without much ado, agrees that he’s a believer though he may not.

The late 70s and early 80s was the advent of the era of the word born again and many Christians who became born again at that time were seen adorning a kind of style of clothing that is typical to them. So it was very easy to differentiate them from the ‘masses’. The interesting thing is that though they may have come from different tribes and tongues and from different family backgrounds; that style of clothing gave them one unique identity. Those of them that were pastors those days could not do without suit no matter the level of poverty around them; they made it a point of duty to have some.

Apart from the fact that clothing is an instrument of coverage,  it also promotes human dignity. That is to say, that clothing dignifies one and makes one to appear respectful in the presence of others. So in those days it was like a norm that every believer should put on clothing that covers him or her up. This created a notion that anyone that covers himself has respect for himself and as a result should not receive insult from people.

So, if one finds oneself in the gathering or meeting of believers, what will be noticed is nothing but a group of people that are wearing clothes that covers them up. And in that case it is very easy to detect someone who is not a believer or who just became a believer among them. That is because his clothing appears different from the rest. However, along the line, starting from the late 80s and early 90s, the dressing culture of believers started drifting away from the usual norm. 

It all started with some Pastors putting on clothing that is not within the periphery of the norm. Such clothing makes them look more like politicians than the normal regalia of Pastors of those days. This trend invaded the church world especially in this part of the world and before long most of their followers joined the trend and towards late 90s and early 2000s such attire has settled among believers. 

The remarkable thing here though is the fact that the clothing was still covered-up clothing, no part of the body is being exposed. This kind of trend induced resentment in the fold of believers and many called their Pastors names for putting on clothing that is outside the norm. And because of that many left their churches to join other churches. In those days tremendous breakaways took place because of this dressing issue in the church.

Many who thought that it doesn’t matter supported their opinion by saying that what matters is the inner man not the outward man. They portray the fact that God doesn’t look at the outward man but the inward man, and hence if the inward man is sanctified, the appearance or the look of the outward man doesn’t count. Well, many rode on the wings of this avowal and became born again, as a result, to them it doesn’t matter if they cover up or not what matters is their inner being.

And the trend continued till this day, the side effect of this is that while in the public it is very hard to differentiate a believer from an unbeliever. On the street today, when you ask any Christian are you born again? The answer to this is a resounding yes, but the truth is that their clothing speaks a different tone from the answer they give.
On the other hand, the fact remains that those who say believers should cover-up are right and the ones that say the covering up doesn’t matter are right too. However, we have to draw the borderline and if you know the borderline do not hesitate to comment to tell us.