From Pastor to Nudist (Part 2)

If you haven’t already, you should watch or read part 1 of this series here. This video contains non-sexual nudity, just as a fair warning. If non-sexual nudity is new to you, maybe watch and you’ll see how non-sexual it is. Otherwise, just read the transcript below:

Jim: We have all of this theoretical knowledge now. We have the Bible on it, but what’s the practical application like? So on Friday we stopped in at Whitetail Resort in Ivor, Virginia. And we paid our day
visit fee, checked in at the office and we drove our minivan over to the clubhouse where the indoor pool was.

And I’m looking at her to see if she’s going to get out first. And she’s looking at me to see if I’m going to get out first. And neither one of us could get out of the van. We drove away after paying the stupid fee and spending 10 minutes sitting in the van talking to each other. We drove away without ever
getting out of the van. Hmm.

And we were both kind of like, this is stupid. What are we afraid of? And so we talked about it all week long that we would go back the following weekend after the retreat was over. We’d get a room and we’d spend them, you know, that we could get some acclimation time on our own. And, you know, we got undressed in the room, the hotel room kind of thing. And we’re kind of like looking out the window, right To see if, you know, anybody else is out there.

And there were a lot out there. We we remember a lady off to our right was gardening in her garden
outside as God intended. And we look over at the basketball courts. There’s a couple of teenagers
playing basketball and an older fellow on a riding lawnmower mowing the lawn, an older couple walking their dog. Everything was so normal.

Everything was so normal.

And so we’re standing out on the porch, on the deck outside our hotel room. And it just was like a little mind blowing. That these folks were all naked but doing just normal, everyday things. Which is, which is what we expected but didn’t expect.

We met the most wonderful people that weekend and had the most wonderful time. In fact, at that very resort we’ve met some of the folks that have been 20 year friendships now.

We’re sitting by the pool, their kids are playing and they have a newborn. And so I asked him, I said, “What do you do for a living?” And he says, “Well, I’m a Baptist preacher.”

And the mouth thing again. You could have pushed me over with a feather because I’m sitting here
and he goes, “What do you do for a living?” I said, “I’m a Baptist preacher.” It’s like, “Oh, that’s great!’ I’m like, “That is just weird, man.”

Kim: Really great people and friends through the years. They don’t hide anything. I think the friendships are real compared to the normal people who can hide behind their clothing.

It’s just, we’re like family. Everyone, everyone. This whole week!

Jim: Feels like it’s how it’s supposed to be, doesn’t it?

Kim: Yeah. It’s relaxing and just good people, and I enjoy it. Yeah.

Jim: The first. The first visit was tough. That second visit was easy.

Kim: For him. For you. It took me a little bit, but just the people you meet. And once you’re there, it’s
great. It’s just… I mean, I’d rather have this kind of vacation any day! The freedom. You almost don’t
want to put your clothes back on when go home, you know?

Jim: What do you think about going to the beach? Would you rather go to the beach and wear a swimsuit or go to a nudist beach?

Kim: Oh my gosh. Yeah.

Jim: How about our pool in the backyard? Swimsuit or no?

Kim: No, never.

From Pastor to Nudist (Part 1)

Continuing the series of new videos from Aching for Eden Productions, here’s part 1 of an amazing true story.

WARNING: This post contains nudity. If this offends you, skip the video and just read the transcript. Hopefully if you are on this site, the sight of simply nudity is ok, or you’re reconditioning your mind to see the innocence in it.

And here’s the transcript:

We were at a business meeting in a friend of ours’ home, and after the meeting was over we were sitting around just drinking coffee and visiting and having a great time. And the lady of the house, she kind of like embarrassed looking and hesitant. And she says, “I need to ask you for a favor.” And she says, “You’re a pastor, right?” “Well, yeah, of course, yes.” She says, “I really need you to help me. My sister and her husband and their family are nudists.” And she kind of she kind of whispered it like like it was a bad word, you know, nudists. “And I need you to help me talk them out of it.” And we kind of looked at each other like it was kind of funny, you know?

But I said, “Oh, absolutely, I’m in, but give me a week so I can get some ammo. We need to do a Bible study, find out what the Bible says so that we have some ammo for them.” I said, “I don’t want to just wing it.” “We’ll straighten them up!” And so we drove home that night.

We kind of joked about it on the way home, you know, because we had about an hour and a half drive home. And it was just it was one of those odd things.

We started looking up every verse on naked or nude or anything to do with that subject. We already knew ahead of time we could not use anything with Adam and Eve, so we kind of just glossed over that right away. But suddenly, everywhere we looked was positive.

You know, we’ve got King Saul was naked with the prophets, which meant that when they assumed he was a prophet because he was naked, well, then the prophets had to have been naked. So that that didn’t fit the narrative. So we kind of threw that aside.

And then it was, you know, King David and Isaiah under the command of the Lord for three years naked. And just in case you were wondering how naked, naked and barefoot!

And then there was, I mean, just over and over again throughout the Old Testament. So we were like, okay, well, that’s because that was Old Testament. So let’s look at the New Testament. And then you find, you know, Peter naked while fishing. And rather than being reprimanded by Christ or straightened up, it just mentioned it like it was just in passing.

And then we find out that Jesus, you know, it says that he took off his robe to wash the apostles’ feet at the Last Supper. And I’m thinking, “Hmm, that not doesn’t fit.” Peter doesn’t fit in.

And then you find that the Bible tells us that at the triumphal entry that they took their clothes off and laid them in the way for Jesus to ride the donkey. Everywhere, Old Testament, New Testament,
nothing fit. We couldn’t find any.

If you would pull Leviticus 18 out of context, well then you could use it. But we make a habit of not doing that. We look at the Bible from a legitimate standpoint, not make it say what we want it to.

So everything we found didn’t fit the agenda, which really threw me for a loop as a pastor, frankly, because we’d been taught our whole entire educational system as a pastor and the church growing up naked, equal sex and naked equals bad, right? Well, that’s not what the Bible said. Not at all.

So we go back. You can tell she’s wanting to bring the subject up. Right? So I said to her, I said, “You’re going to want to sit down. Because what we found was not what we expected.” And they both were like, “Really?” Boom, sit down. We’re at the kitchen table. And I had, I brought a printout of all the verses with me. So I kind of slid the printout over and I said, this is all of the verses in the Bible that specifically referred to just simple nonsexual nudity.

And she’s like, “Wow, that’s a lot of verses.” I said, “Yeah, and they’re all pro non-sexual nudity. This is not good news for you. This is bad news for you. These are all verses that are pro body acceptance.”

God made us in his image, not ashamed and called it very good. And so we went through each verse at a time and answered all the questions. And she says at the end, she says, “Well, what do we do about this?” Which was, it’s a really good question.

And Kim says, you wanna tell him what you said? In our house, we believe if God says it. No. If God is for it, we’re for it. And if God is against it, we’re against it.

And so my mouth fell open because I hadn’t, I actually hadn’t asked the question, what do we do about it? Right? I just studied it. Couldn’t help them any. And she’s like, “Well, if God is for it, we’re for it.” And I went. [speechless] Because what do you do with that? Right?

And so a couple of weeks later… (I didn’t say it wouldn’t be hard.) [laughing] But if God is for it, we believe the Bible. Right. That’s the bottom line, isn’t it? Is we believe the Bible is the word of God. And if God is for it, we’re for it.

So we’re Jim and Kim and been naturists for 20 plus years.


Stay tuned for part 2. Better yet, follow us so you don’t miss anything!

Check out www.nakedandunashamed.org while you’re at it.

A Conversation with Mike and Linda

This is the first of a series of short videos from Aching for Eden Productions.

WARNING: This video contains nudity. If that offends you, please go to another part of the blog and read article after article until hopefully nudity (the Image of God and crown of creation) offends you no more. If you’re just not there yet, that’s ok, we get it. We were once there too. If so, you can skip the video, and just read the transcript.

Mike: I would walk around periodically on the property naked and I would ask the Lord, “Why does the wind and why does the sunshine feel so good?”

I started Googling naturism. And the world has a lot of bad areas that they claim as naturism,
which was nothing biblical. So I took a complete biblical view of it. So whatever I felt, I needed
to seek the Lord if it was true or not. Is it in His word? Is it somewhere where I can accept it being godly?

And then I stumbled across www.nakedandunashamed.org. That put things in context. But even though I saw it on his page, I still tested it with the word.

Linda: Right. Oh, it took me some more time, you know, obviously the body image thing
and all of those things. But, you know, with Mike’s help and teachings that… you know, helped
me to realize that I am beautiful. You know, we’re all created in His image and just accepting that, learning that it’s okay. I mean, so much more acceptance in this atmosphere than in the world’s atmosphere. There’s so much judgment out there. And there’s just no judgment in this lifestyle, this, you know, living as God intended.

Mike: Total non judgment, no body image issues. You would think that growing up in textile world, Hollywood’s got it right. You’ve got to have this particular figure. You got to have, you know, a guy’s got to have a six pack. I mean, perfect body image. That’s what they portray.

Covering up God’s creation and what he truly designed for us from the beginning, that’s Satan’s lies. It is just everything that God created good, Satan tries to reverse it. So once you start looking at the world
and what they say is good and you actually get up enough courage…

Whoever sees this give naturism 15, 20 minutes at a naturist venue and all of that garbage will be gone. This is what God intended, as far as I’m concerned. It gives you true freedom. All the worldly garbage is gone. You have to just throw the world behind you.

And every time Satan or anybody makes you think of, “Oh, this isn’t right or that isn’t right.” who’s telling you that? Christ or Satan? True freedom in naturism is putting Satan Step on him!

One of the first biggest things we did was, and it’s huge, going on in a bare necessities cruise.

2500 naked people all… nobody cared. But the reason why I brought that up is body image. A woman has had mastectomy. She’s got scars all across her breasts. She’s the happiest one on the beach because God has given her the peace, that she’s still beautiful.

Linda: And the acceptance from the people.

Mike: That was… people that have amputees, missing limbs. You know, the world says you need to put a fake prosthetic on so you can, you know, look like us. You know, they need them for walking too. Okay, don’t get me wrong, but the world has said so many of these things. You go to a naturist venue, it doesn’t even get noticed. You are what God’s made you. You know, whether you’re born with a situation or something happened in life. It’s just a blessing.

Linda: You know, it still takes a little while for you to get through that, because you can’t really believe
that people aren’t judging you for your imperfections and all the things that you feel are imperfect. Although God does not see it that way because He made me perfect. But here, nobody… It doesn’t matter, you know? No, it doesn’t matter.

Mike: Hollywood says you have to look like A-B-C, and naturism is delete A-B-C and what God’s given
you is a blessing. Yeah.

Linda: Unless you experience it for yourself, you’re never going to understand. And if you just give yourself that opportunity to just not worry about what anybody else has to say, because that’s your first thing, what are people going to say? How are they going to look at me? Am I going to look too heavy, too
thin too this, too that? If you just give yourself the opportunity to experience it, then you’ll understand why God created us this way.

Mike: 15 minutes. That’s what I say. 15 minutes. If you allow yourself to come to the naturist venue in 15 minutes, if you have clothes on, you’re going to feel like the oddball. You’ll want to take them off. And not one person is going to notice that you’re naked. You’re the only one that’s going to notice you’re naked. And then in another few minutes, you’re like going to go, “Why did I wait so long? Why did I wait so long?”

What does nakedness mean?

Words have meaning. And as such, much of our communication can become an exercise in semantics if we cannot agree on the definitions of the words being used.

Classical languages use different words to communicate nuance where English only uses one word to express a host of different ideas. I think of the word “love.” In Greek there were four words for love:

  • Philia – a love found in strong friendships
  • Eros – an erotic love of passion and intimacy
  • Storge – a love found in family relationships
  • Agape – a type of selfless, unconditional love

In English we use the same word to cover the gamut of feelings from “I love my wife”  to “I love frozen yogurt.” I sure hope my love for my wife is stronger and different than my love for froyo! Do you begin to see the potential confusion over words that are identical in every way except for context?

So it is with nudity and nakedness. Watch this video to see what I mean. The video text will be printed after.

The word naked is usually used as a descriptive adjective. 

One might think of a naked mole rat, which describes a pink, nearly hairless rodent, or the “naked” truth, which is a way of saying that the information shared is unvarnished or without ornamentation. Simply put, we usually think of naked as meaning “without a covering.”

What does the term “nakedness” mean in the Bible?

Most of the passages that speak to nakedness are found in the Old Testament. As such, it is from within the Old Testament pages that most Bible teachers today draw their conclusions about what God thinks about nakedness.

If we really want to know what God’s perspective is towards nudity, it stands to reason that we must correctly understand the words from the Bible and their meanings.

There are three individual words for nakedness in the Old Testament: arowm, eyrom and ervah.

In Genesis 2:25, we are first introduced to arowm, which means “simple and innocent nakedness.” 

“The man and his wife were arowm, but they were not ashamed.”

Later, in Genesis 3:7, after the Fall, the word eyrom for “vulnerable nakedness, with a sense of being exposed to harm” is used. 

“Then the eyes of both were opened, and they knew that they were eyrom; and they sewed fig leaves together and made loincloths for themselves.”

And finally, after the global flood, in Genesis 9:22 we are exposed to a new word for “active sexual nakedness,” ervah

“And Ham, the father of Canaan, saw the ervah of his father…”

All three of these variants have their basis in the same root Hebrew word, but their biblical usage indicates different shades of meaning. Sadly, in our common language translations, we generally just get one word, “naked,” which, understandably, has led many to develop wrong thoughts on what nakedness is all about!

God never calls arowm or eyrom shameful. There is no Scripture in the Bible that says, “Thou shalt not be naked” or “Nakedness is sinful.” In fact, He used naked circumcision as a visible sign of His Covenant with Abraham and his descendants.

Ervah, on the other hand, is where we see sin joined with nakedness and shame. If what a person was doing in a situation was sinful, or could be the cause of sin, it was ervah

In the New Testament, the word for naked is gymnos. It means “bare, without clothing” and is the root of the word, “gymnasium.” The gym was a place to exercise in a state of nudity. 

Hebrews 4:13 reminds us that in God’s eyes, “No creature is hidden, but all are gymnos…

Many “grown-up” translations try to “cover up” simple nudity in the Bible, such as when the Apostle Peter was naked and fishing, but interestingly, the International Children’s Bible gets it right!

“…he wrapped his coat around himself. (Peter had taken his clothes off.) Then he jumped into the water.” See John 21:3-7.

What word was used in the Greek for his lack of clothing? Gymnos, of course!

Like ervah above, there are two instances in the New Testament where shame added to nudity produces a negative situation. The greek word aschēmosýnē is used for specific situations when nudity is inappropriately sexual or used to shame. 

In Romans 1:27, this word is used to describe unnatural sexual activity, and in Revelation 16:15, it is used to implicate the consequences of laziness. 

Ultimately, we look to the teaching of our Rabbi, Y’Shua, who teaches us that sin starts in the heart and grows into action. 

Nakedness, like other subjects in the Bible, is actually a neutral state. Most people throughout history have known that simple nudity is not sinful. Yet, if we hold faulty definitions, our thoughts, our actions, and our discipleship journey with other believers in the Body of Christ will be affected. 

It is wonderful that, as New Covenant believers, we have the ability to focus our hearts on Jesus and experience the innocent, pure nakedness of the Garden.

What wrongs might be righted if the church rediscovered this truth?

See also the presentation at https://renude.life/what-is-naked/


[H6174] (ex. Gen. 2:25, 1 Sam 19:24, Job 1:21) — arowm

[H5903] (ex. Gen. 3:7 & 10, Deut. 28:48, Eze. 18:7) – eyrom

[H6172] (ex. Gen. 9:22, Exo. 28:42, Lev. 18:6) – ervah

[G1131] (ex. John 21:7, Heb 4:13) — gymnos

[G808] – ashchemosyne

Introducing ReNude.Life

My good friend has recently launched a new resource that has neatly organized and presented some of the most common questions asked by those who are just learning some of the key ideas we believe as Christian naturists. Then, of course, the answer to such questions are explored in context. Body shame and social conditioning is so pervasive that most people view the naked body either through over-sexual eyes or with great distain as if it were lewd or obscene. This new website tackles the questions Bible-believing Christians might ask in a thorough and creative way.

The site was created by our good friend, and it’s related to Aching For Eden in that most of its content first appeared here in our own Objections series of blog posts and videos we helped create. It’s our joy to collaborate with others of a like mind because we believe this is such an important message that needs to get out in whatever way it can.

I also love the metaphor of the butterfly that is featured throughout the navigation of this site. A renewed (or ReNude) view of the body truly is a metamorphosis and the old ways of thinking are gone for good. Behold, the new has come (2 Corinthians 5:18). A caterpillar should not want to stay that way for life. Likewise, a butterfly would never want to go back to being a caterpillar once it could fly. Nor should we once we’ve tasted the blessings of freedom this life and form of thinking offers us. I make this point at length in this post.

So check out ReNude.Life and share it with those who may be interested in taking a hard look at what the Bible actually says about nudity. Here’s what the homepage has to say:

Answer Questions About Nudity in the Bible

Have you ever wondered what the Bible actually has to say about nudity? ReNude Life is designed to answer questions about nudity in the Bible and promote the freedom that comes through knowing the Gospel of Jesus Christ.

You might be surprised by what you learn!

What causes the strong cultural bent against simple nudity? Why is it that nakedness is immediately attached to sexuality? And why does “sex sell?” These are common thoughts, but it doesn’t have to be this way.

Our culture’s lack of simple nudity understanding leads to many dangers like pornography addiction, sexual abuse and trauma.

For far too long, Christians have adopted the worldly view that naked bodies are shameful. We dutifully layer on clothing and swimming costumes and force nursing mothers to cover up.
As a result, we have drifted along with a world that places being acceptable and inoffensive first. Scripture, however, tells us that we are the Imago Dei, literally made in the Image of God!
We’ve forgotten that God made us “naked and unashamed.” So, how can we be a light instead of accepting the darkness?

Like a caterpillar changing into a butterfly, our hope is that by renu-ing your mind on the topic of biblical nudity, you’ll be able to strip off old ideas and emerge into the ReNude Life!

Do not be conformed to this world, but be transformed by the renewing of your minds, so that you may discern what is the will of God—what is good and acceptable and perfect.
Romans 12:2

Check it out at www.renude.life today!

Unpresentable Parts?

If you ask a Bible scholar what 1 Corinthians 12 is about, they are bound to answer something having to do with the analogy of the body as it relates to unity in the Church. That is the undeniable context of this verse in question today. This blog is not Church unity, although that is a topic near to my own heart. It’s a blog about Christian naturism. Sadly, some have used verses 22-23 as an objection against the views of Christian naturists. This is a classic example of proof texting and taking verses out of their clear context.

In fact, those who would say Christian naturists are in error and as a result, you must break fellowship with them, they who maintain this position are in direct violation of the greater message of 1 Corinthians 12. Christian naturists are part (and I’d add a vital part) of the body of Christ, and not to be amputated. There must be no division between Christians with naturist freedom versus other Christians. We are not to say of another believer, “I have no need of you.” In an attempt to project prudish and repressive views onto others, believers attack other believers who hold different convictions and in so doing they commit the sin of divisiveness.

However, that is not the point of this post. Context aside, what is meant by the phrase “unpresentable parts”? That’s what our new video dives into in great detail. Watch the video and the script will be provided at the bottom. I would have to conclude, from all of this, that this verse is no reason to abandon the amazing Eden-like freedom of Christian naturism.

1 Corinthians 12:22-25:

“The parts of the body that seem to be weaker are indispensable, and on those parts of the body that we think less honorable we bestow the greater honor, and our unpresentable parts are treated with greater care, which our more presentable parts do not require. But God has so composed the body, giving greater honor to the part that lacked it, that there may be no division in the body, but that the members may have the same care for one another.” 

Like many passages in the New Testament, this one is actually a metaphor for unity in the church and for how each person plays a unique part in the makeup of the body of Christ. 

However, as these verses have been wrongly used to shame our physical bodies, let us dig into the idea that some parts of our bodies are “unpresentable.” What do we think these parts are? Our 21st century western perspective would jump to the conclusion that the passage must be speaking of breasts and genitals. 

If we lived in another place or time, however, we might think our ankles or our ears, or even our eyes were “unpresentable,” while having no concern with exposing the entirety of the remainder of our bodies!

The Greek Testament Critical Exegetical Commentary informs us that the phrase “less presentable members” refers to “those limbs which we conceal from sight in accordance with custom, but in the exposure of which there would be no indecency.” 

Heinrich Meyer’s Critical and Exegetical Commentary on the New Testament explains that Paul was referring primarily to the inner organs, (the intestines, the brain, the heart) but allows for a reference to the delicate external organs (ears, eyes, genitals) as well. 

Modern pietists might “strain at a gnat,” or hunt for a needle in this haystack to proof-text the idea that some body parts are worse than others, but in this search, they’ll only find acres of hay.

Our true focus should be that God has called the entire body: good [see Genesis 1:31]. 

What, then, does “unpresentable” mean? If one is going out in a sand storm, it is smart to cover one’s face. It is “unpresentable” to the environmental conditions at the time. If you are going into a very cold environment, you will want to cover all of your exposed flesh. In that situation, it is “less presentable.” Our brains, our hearts, our lungs— to each of these, God has given more honor by enclosing them within our bodies. They are “unpresentable,” but “more honorable.” 

It is only our culture, feeding on customs and the passage of time, that has wrongly concluded that our genitalia or areolae are dishonorable and exist in a state of continuous shame.

If we continue to pass down faulty information and myths to our children, these meaningless traditions will continue… until someone asks a simple question: why? 

Before we say “because God said so,” or “because the Bible said so,” we should ask the simple question: Really?

The issue is not that our reproductive organs are inherently bad. Sometimes, they just get in the way! When not being exposed to harsh elements or strapped down because of exercise or work, our vulnerable external body parts are just as beautiful and “presentable” as anything else.

The Christian walk provides life and freedom. Next time you have the opportunity to bare your skin to the sunshine, let it beam! God is smiling on all of your created parts.

The Sign of Circumcision

When you hear the word “sign” you get the impression that you should to take note of whatever it is that is being called a sign. In fact, most signs are visible, otherwise how are they to be seen and understood?

It’s a terrible analogy but imagine driving high speed on a country road and you see a sign with a cloth draped over it obscuring the message it contains. You wonder what it was trying to convey, and as you are free falling to certain death, you realize it must’ve said “Bridge Out!” OK, I warned you that this would be a stretch, but if there are dangers present on a road you would want a sign to also warn you! Signs communicate all sorts of truths and provide direction and understanding for greater purposes than the sign itself. 

We don’t give much thought to the “sign” of circumcision today, do we? Let’s start contemplating this sign of the Covenant through this “part 1” video:

There’s a lot more to cover, which is why we made a two part video. The question, though, is why did God make such a sign? Maybe you can add your thoughts in the comments. With hyper-privacy and prudish thinking today, we can’t really fathom this being a visible sign, but it certainly was in those days. Maybe the only place today where this would be visible would be the gym (interestingly enough that word comes from the Greek word for naked), but even then, people don’t walk around exposed very often, even in the dressing room! In Bible times, however, you would know for sure who was and wasn’t circumcised. Watch “part 2” for more of which you may not have considered:

The issue of circumcision caused some drama in the New Testament era. Did Gentiles need to be circumcised after conversion to Christianity? It sparked quite the debate as a new issue that was never pondered before. The Judaizers seemed to think they should be circumcised. What did Paul have to say about it? And again, how did people even know who was and who wasn’t in the first place? The answer is nudity was much more commonplace then, and not a taboo like it is today.

Have you thought about this?

Now this last observation is sobering. Our Lord was crucified naked. They cast lots for his clothes. Early art depicted this, but censored art gave way to the loin cloth making the image less shameful and grotesque. Our Lord endured the cross, scorning its shame (Hebrews 12:2)- the shame is not in the nudity, but rather in the complete subjugation and forceful nature of having been tortured. However, our Lord declared, “No one can take my life from me. I sacrifice it voluntarily (John 10:18 NLT).” He bore the shame of a lowly criminal’s death by his own volition. 

Pilate hung the sign above Jesus that read, “King of the Jews.” Everyone could see that he was not a Roman. He was in fact a Jew. This, not because of the sign above his head, but also because of the sign of the Covenant on his body, which was then broken for us. He gave us another sign- the bread and the cup, that we might remember the new covenant and proclaim his death every time we eat and drink of it until he comes (1 Corinthians 11:26). 

See all posts and videos in the “Objections” series here.

What about priestly garments?

“Holy” simply means set apart. When God chose for himself a people, it was for the purpose of setting them apart, but not so they would feel special or superior, but rather to be a light for the nations (Isaiah 60:3).

This is why God had for the nation of Israel clear distinctions between them and the surrounding countries or people groups (or they were supposed to have them). They were to be different. The whole world could be known for one way of being, but God’s people were to be holy and set apart. When they let their light shine before others, the hope would be that the others would see their good deeds and glorify the father in heaven (Matthew 5:16).

What does this have to do with Christian naturism? It is context for a discussion regarding the priestly garments God instructed to be worn. It helps set up this video…

It really doesn’t have anything to do with Christian naturism at all. It’s simply another objection that is raised when prudish Christians struggle to see the freedom we enjoy as permissible or beneficial. As with the other objections, a careful study of the text will exonerate Christian naturists from any guilt on their part for living “as God intended.” The perceived guilt is instead projected onto them, coming from a mind that has not been renewed on issues of the body. A friend pointed out in a youtube comment on one of these videos that those who make objections need “reNude” minds!

As the video points out, the issue isn’t the sight of simple nudity. Otherwise why would the priests be stripped bare to be ceremonially washed in front of the whole assembly?

The issue here was one of differentiation. Israel was to be an example of not just morality, but overall goodness. This is the reason idolatry was such an offense toward the Lord. When all the surrounding nations practiced sexual immorality as a part of their religious worship, God in no uncertain terms said, “Not so with you.” The invention of undergarments that went from the waist to the thigh would make it impossible to emulate and practice the pagan rituals that were commonplace in that time.

God wanted a marked difference between those who were his people and those who are on the outside looking in. He still wants that today. It’s a sad shame we often take our cues from the culture around us, instead of the other way around. We have a way that is more “holy.” I don’t use that term to sound religiously better than or holier than thou. God is still calling us to treat others with the respect and dignity they deserve as being made in His image. It’s time we opt for this higher view.

See all posts and videos in the “Objections” series here.

Clothe the Naked

Jesus tells us we should clothe the naked. How many naked people do you know? Not too many these days. There’s not too much of a lack of clothing anywhere today. Even in some of the most poor areas of the world, you can see t-shirts of the team that lost the Super Bowl which were printed in case they won. The loom (and the fruit of it) has made clothing fairly affordable and extremely accessible. And yet, Jesus tells us to clothe the naked.

How do we apply the words of Jesus today? Some would say a Christian should never go to a nude beach or worse a naturist resort, because Jesus says to clothe the naked. Is that how we should apply it? Here is an article we wrote that examines what clothes Scripture does command. We think it’s worth the read!

For now, watch this short video to see what Jesus means by “Clothe the Naked.”

The video makes it pretty clear that clothe the naked simply means to care for the poor. One verse we didn’t have time to include in the video would be Isaiah Chapter 58:7. It asks “Is it not to share your bread with the hungry and bring the homeless poor into your house; when you see the naked, to cover him, and not to hide yourself from your own flesh?” Clothing was handmade and expensive. Like a modern day credit card, your garment was collateral and if you lost it, you’d be cold and night and in abject poverty. You’d sell all you had before loosing your cloak, which was also your blanket.

We need to understand the historical context before we claim the Bible says what we think says. Nowadays clothing has gotten more intricate and fashionable and accessorizing. In fact, when the Bible speaks of modesty, it’s not about covering the body as much as it is avoiding ostentatious dress. Modest fashion, to us, is an oxymoron. More on modesty here.

In summary, clothing the naked, is not so much about nudity as much as it is about kindness, compassion, and loving your neighbor.

See all “Objections” series blogs and videos here.

Noah and the Curse

Does the story of Noah and Ham justify racism and slavery? Many used to think it did. Does it support the prudish view that you are not to see another person naked? Many today think it does. Upon closer examination, however, it does neither.

It comes down, like so many other objections, to simple Hebrew euphemisms. Watch the short video to see the explanation:

A perspective of Michael Heiser’s that I would agree with comes from his “The Naked Bible Podcast” (I love the name, and it’s not even a naturist podcast!) Here is a downloadable transcript. This great episode about this oft misunderstood passage rehashes the scholarly work of Bergsma and Hahn found here.

What IS clear is that there is something way beyond simple nudity at play here. And yet, this remains one of the most common objections of all against the practice of non-sexual social nudity. There’s not much else to say about this that is not covered already by the video or the podcast link.

One other resource that would be beneficial to anyone who brings this story up against Christian naturists would be “Who Said You Were Naked?” by David L. Hatton. While it does not bring up this story, it is a clarion call to those who have had those knee-jerk reactions like this of body shame and porno/prudery in their theological framework to think more deeply and be more body friendly like the God who created us is.

On page 192 he says:

When Gnostic prudery’s enchantment is broken, a mental veil is lifted. The blind legalism of deceptively “opened” eyes is replaced by a human-friendly vision of our incarnate nature. Body shame insulated us from a proper perception of ourselves. Body acceptance mentally restores not only a human-friendly attitude about our embodiment, but a Creator-honoring perspective on His handiwork.

A variety of resources and evidences confirms this awareness. One is a careful, thoughtful review of Scripture itself, but only when done with the culture-tinted spectacles of prudery removed. Then we will see that, unlike today, those in Bible times were familiar with routines that made occasional nudity a normal part of life. A human-friendly rereading of the Bible can also show us how God uses our physical sexuality to symbolize His divine plan for human salvation and how our bodies visually reflect certain divine attributes or convey divine message about Himself.

I agree with Hatton, not only on these points, but also the conviction he has written about– that once you know the truth, you must speak the truth as a way of making restitution for the wrong and harmful interpretations the church has historically baptized as gospel.

See all posts and videos in the “Objections” series here.