By Jason Pound
In the New Testament, there are only two scriptures that have a chance to be used in support of the no jewelry doctrine. In the Old Testament, more scriptures are in favor of jewelry than against it. Those that do speak of it in a negative light, are against how, why and/or what the jewelry was used for, not the jewelry itself. For this reason, I will only discuss the two New Testament Scriptures (taken from the New Living Translation).
1. I Timothy 2: 8-10 So, wherever you assemble, I want men to pray with holy hands lifted up to God, free from anger and controversy. And I want women to be modest in their appearance. They should wear decent and appropriate clothing and not draw attention to themselves by the way they fix their hair or by wearing gold or pearls or expensive clothes. For women who claim to be devoted to God should make themselves attractive by the good things they do.
2. I Peter 3:1-5 In the same way, you wives must accept the authority of your husbands, even those who refuse to accept the Good News. Your godly lives will speak to them better than any words. They will be won over by watching your pure, godly behavior. Don't be concerned about the outward beauty that depends on fancy hairstyles, expensive jewelry, or beautiful clothes. You should be known for the beauty that comes from within, the unfading beauty of a gentle and quiet spirit, which is so precious to God. That is the way the holy women of old made themselves beautiful. They trusted God and accepted the authority of their husbands.
What are the key words in this part of the letter to Timothy? Modest, decent and appropriate. Paul told Timothy, that when the women come to church they do not need to draw unnecessary attention to themselves via their outfits, but by their good deeds. Not a slam on looking good, but a slam on gaudiness. Hmm, have you ever been to a UPC convention or General Conference (not slamming the UPC, just pointing out an inconsistency of application of the scriptures in its teaching vs. its actions)? There are plenty of attention drawing outfits and hairdos.
What about Peter? Peter was writing to the wives of unsaved men. Don't try to win them with your fancy hair or clothes, but win them with your quiet spirit of submission.
In short, Paul and Peter are not against jewelry, but the appearance of gaudiness that comes with the wrong attitude.
Read Ezekiel 16 and ask yourself this question: Why would God use an evil analogy to show perfect holy love for his people?
This writing is the copyright of Jason Pound and was posted with his permission. Jason Pound is a former UPC minister. He was an assistant pastor at Turning Point, formerly North United Pentecostal Church, in Oklahoma City, Oklahoma and is now a hopeful skeptic. These articles were written while he was a believer. His email address is firstname.lastname@example.org if you wish to write. View all of his available articles here.
Page added July 6, 2006
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