Indonesia Puts America to Shame

Indonesia Puts America

to Shame

Richard Hollerman

As the years pass by, devoted Christians find themselves more and more ashamed of the policies and practices of their earthly homeland—the United States.  We are not suggesting that most countries are any better in their downward plunge to destruction, but the difference is that America formerly had a degree of decency that many of the nations of the world didn’t approach.  In many ways, this has changed for the worse.

Probably one area that has seen radical changes in degeneration is that of clothing styles.  Until the beginning of the twentieth century, women (and men) were generally fully clothed. At the close of the Victorian era, sometimes they wore elaborate garments and hairstyles, but at least they were completely clothed.

Now this is not the case. In some instances, women clothe (or unclothe) themselves with very little!  Bare middles, high hemlines, low and plunging necklines are increasingly common.  Especially in the summertime, women seem to lose almost all restraint and show all of their legs, their middle areas, and their upper portions.  The tiny, greatly-abbreviated bikini—has become standard fare on the beach or at the poolside.

Recently a report from Indonesia came to my attention.  The article was titled, “Indonesia wants to ban ‘pornographic’ miniskirts.”  Notice the report:

Women’s hemlines may be dropping in Indonesia, and not for fashion’s sake. The country’s religious affairs minister, Suryadharma Ali, said this week he wants to ban miniskirts under the country’s new anti-porn laws because they constitute “pornography.” Ali said he wanted to establish clear criteria for what constituted porn and is therefore illegal, adding, “for example, skirts worn by women must flow past the knees.” Earlier this month, Indonesia’s parliament proposed prohibiting female politicians and staff members from wearing miniskirts, which the House speaker said led to “rapes and other immoral acts” and prompted men “to do things.” ( miniskirt-ban- Indonesia.aspx).

It must be remembered that Indonesia is the most populous Islamic country in the world and this accounts for this proposal.  There are parts of the nation that are more “progressive” than others and have been somewhat “westernized,” thus they are more open to western immodest clothing styles.  But the report does show that some in the country are attempting to maintain a degree of decency in the women.

When was the last time you heard of an American court that penalized women (or men) for dressing immodestly in public?  This may happen on certain beaches if someone attempted to display their nudity before others, but generally bikinis are fully accepted.  Some beaches are actually open to “nude bathing”!  This is especially lamentable in light of the past.  At one time, if a woman attempted to walk down a city street in the United States, wearing immodest and abbreviated clothing styles, she would be arrested for indecency.  They would be arrested for what would be considered puritanical in our day! This kind of arrest surely is seldom done in our day of open display and gross immodesty.

We all rejoice in the blessings of “freedom” in this country.  We have the freedom to worship God as we choose, to conduct Bible studies in homes, and to distribute Christian tracts in public.  But the principle of “freedom” has been abused. It has allowed women the “right” to kill their unborn babies. It has permitted pornographers to distribute graphic nudity through print and videos.  It has allowed high school teachers and university professors to openly teach the godless theory of evolution.  In fact, it is required that these lies be told and it is unlawful to mention God or His creation in the public schools! In hundreds of ways, freedom has been abused to allow sin of all kinds.  We read in Scripture, “Act as free men, and do not use your freedom as a covering for evil, but use it as bondslaves of God’ (1 Peter 2:16).

And this same freedom allows women to display their uncovered bodies before the lustful gaze of the opposite sex.  There is guilt on the part of both the male and the female.  Jesus said that the man must refrain from lusting (sexually desiring) over the woman (Matthew 5:27-30).  The woman must not dress in an immodest and enticing manner (1 Timothy 2:9-10).  Paul adds that we must do nothing that would give offense (Romans 14:20; 1 Corinthians 10:32) or cause another person to “stumble” into sin (v. 21).  We must not seek our own good but that of the other person (1 Corinthians 10:24).

If it were not for the current warped view of clothing in America, we too would see the miniskirt as “pornographic,” to use the Indonesian term.  We should be able to see that “immoral acts” as well as immoral thoughts come from permitting immodest clothing in public.  Why do we give the impression to other countries that we are a “Christian” country when, in reality, our morals are much worse than certain other countries? This is hypocrisy, pure and simple!

Although we can’t change the country as a whole, true Christians can make sure that they dress modestly and decently, all for God’s glory.  Let America and other liberal “freedom-loving” countries not be put to shame before conservative and respectful nations of the world. It is especially shameful that certain nations that are dominated by false and perverted religion should dress much more modestly than an “enlightened” and “progressive” and “Christian” nation! 

Especially, let us as followers of the Lord Jesus display the light of God in this dark world.  Let’s dress and act modestly and decently in a world that has fallen into deep darkness, immorality, and indecency.  People will know that we are Christians by our love—a love for God and love for others that is manifested in outward ways, including our modest and respectful clothing.

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