What are You Advertising?

What are You Advertising?

How Clothing reflects a person’s worldly perspective

Richard Hollerman

The follower of our Lord Jesus Christ must especially be careful of the way he clothes himself or herself.  Just as the speech reveals the heart (Matthew 12:34), so our clothes reveal our heart.  One can determine the attitudes, perspectives, interests, and lifestyle of a person by what he likes to talk about.  Similarly, a person can readily discern where our heart lies by observing the kind of clothes we wear.

If a woman or girl wears a bikini or any modern bathing suit, people can recognize something about her.  If a man wears worldly attire, people can understand something about the person.  Therefore, we must always be aware of what we wear–and the message that it leaves with people. If we want to make an impact on people for good and for the Lord Jesus, we must pay particular attention to our attire. They will “read” what we wear and we surely want them to be impressed with Christ and not with our alignment with the world.

Let me ask you a question: What are you advertising by what you wear?  If you wear a shirt, sweatshirt, jacket, or another piece of clothing with pictures or writing on it, what do people see and what do you display?  What message do you advertise?  Is it something positive, constructive, encouraging, and God-centered?  Or is it something that is of the world—something that advertises the ways, habits, entertainment, recreation, and patterns of the world?

James says that the Christian is to keep himself “unstained by the world” (1:27) and is to refuse to be “a friend of the world” for this would make him “an enemy of God” (4:4).  We are commanded by John, “Do not love the world” (1 John 2:15), and Paul adds, “Do not be conformed to this world” (Romans 12:2).  The world is a constant enemy that seeks to infiltrate our lives and, more broadly, it seeks to influence the body of Christ!

Again I ask, what are you advertising?  Do you choose an article of clothing that has a positive message written on it?  Maybe it is an actual Biblical message.  Maybe it is a convicting or edifying message that will cause others to ponder and be led to higher and nobler thoughts.  On the other hand, people often wear messages on their clothing that definitely has a worldly content. People are of the world, thus they speak of the world.  As John says, “They are from the world; therefore they speak as from the world” (1 John 4:5a).  Likewise, people display messages from the world on their clothing.

I once worked in a business and had the opportunity to take photos of some of the shirts that the employees wore.  Notice some of these items (which follow) and ask yourself whether the messages convey holy, pure, righteous, and godly values.  On the other hand, do the messages advertize the world and its sinful ways?  Here are a few of the shirts that were worn. First, notice the general degeneracy of some of the shirts:

Here are more degenerate ones:

Some of the shirts display a violence so common in America today:

Many shirts display the wearer’s obsession with sports–whether basketball, football, baseball, or another. For further information on this subject, click here: Sports.

Here are more shirts that clearly reveals the hero worship often involved:

And here is another:

And yet another one:

Sometimes the shirts reveal traits that the average person may consider positive and patriotic. However, even these display great pride and nationalism:

Here is pride of a different sort:

This is another form of pride–that we might call “university pride”:

People like to demonstrae their worldliness in a wide array of ways. Here is a shirt on worldly (country) music:

General foolishness is a common theme manifested in one’s clothes:

The true Christian knows that “Christ is our life” (Colossians 3:4) and He is the very reason for our living and source of our life (Philippians 1:21). However, some people proudly display a message that says their “life” is centered on something else–such as sports:

Can you see the problem of wearing some items of clothing that “advertize” the world?  The world is opposed to the holy ways of God!  Only those who are pure in heart will see God (Matthew 5:8)!  Only those who are holy will see the Lord (Hebrews 12:14)!  Only the person who has a mind “set on the Spirit” can experience “life and peace,” whereas the one whose mind is “set on the flesh” will find death (Romans 8:6).

This shows how essential it is to live an entirely different life from those around us.  Determine now to only wear clothing that testifies to your new life in Christ.  Refuse to “advertize” the world by what you wear!


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