Nudity and the Bible

So let’s talk about Biblical nudity.

Song of Solomon is, of course, so full of sex that Christian mothers have been telling their sons to skip that part every since Queen Victoria first set her diminutive derriere on the throne.  What about David, that great man after God’s own heart.  Well, we all know about him and rooftops.  But what about when he danced naked before the Lord and God COMPLEMENTED him for it.

II Sam 6:20 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!

(Yes, Yes, I know, he had a linen ephod on.  So if you are ok with men gyrating in public in boxer shorts, then I guess Janet Jackson and her super-bowl show wasn’t so bad after all)

David danced in public shirtless
Shirtless men dancing in public

But let’s go on. Because the Old Testament can easily be dismissed.  Let’s jump forward to Jesus – our Messiah who everyone thinks was such a prude.

Mt 5:28 But I say unto you, That whosoever looketh on a woman to lust after her hath committed adultery with her already in his heart.

So did Jesus have a big problem with public nudity?  This is the only scripture to back this up and it doesn’t talk about erotic desire at all, but only lust.  Christians who are so careful to say that “Sex does NOT equal lust” suddenly can’t spot the difference.

But there are other scriptures that show the Jesus didn’t nearly have the problems that we think.  Certainly the disciples didn’t.  In John 21, we find out that even after Jesus’ resurrection, the disciples worked all night on a fishing boat, uh, NAKED.

But what about the women?  How did Jesus feel about boobies?

Luke 23:29 For, behold, the days are coming, in the which they shall say, Blessed are the barren, and the wombs that never bare, and the paps which never gave suck.

Apparently, “paps” were a pretty good sight for our Lord!

BUT THAT WASN’T LUSTFUL I can hear you shouting.

THAT’S MY POINT. I shout back.

The early church had no huge problem with nudity.  In fact the people were baptized nude in mixed groups.  In fact, the only shame of nakedness was that it was the condition of the poor people and the slaves and was therefore a “shame”  But note that the shame of nakedness had nothing to do with sex.

So, we see, our attitude about nudity is really just a comment upon our prosperity.  We have gained space to have sex privately, money to buy multiple sets of clothes, and have mistaken our money for Godliness.

In fact, the church is exactly where the book of the Revelation said it would be.

Revel 3:17-18 Because thou sayest, I am rich, and increased with goods, and have need of nothing; and knowest not that thou art wretched, and miserable, and poor, and blind, and naked: 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

 

There is one question we need to answer then. Why did Adam and Even cover themselves?

Good question, and deserving of a good answer. Which I will provide tomorrow.