Should Christians Wear Jewelry?
Should Christians Wear Jewelry?
Should Christians Wear Jewelry, or does the Bible REALLY say you should not wear jewelry? I will give you the Bible’s answer next! And feel free to give your thoughts below as well!
This may be a little difficult for me if I am honest. And I will tell you more later on.
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The Commonly Quoted Verse
When it comes to answering this question “should Christians wear jeweIry?“, it really stems from the New Testament. A book in the New Testament called First Timothy!
First Timothy Reads (1 Tim 2:9):
“In like manner also that women adorn themselves in modest apparel with shamefacedness and sobriety not with broided hair or gold or pearls or costly array“
And here is where you need to be extremely careful when understanding First Timothy. The plain reading is simple right? It says dress modestly, no gold, pearls, twisted hair, or expensive clothing right?
But the fact of the matter is, there are problems. And I will tell you why in a moment!
I Had To Repent For This…
10 years ago before I was married, I frequently scolded my now-wife verbally, about why she should not be wearing jewelry. I had read First Timothy, as I just shared with you. If I am going to be completely honest, every now and again, I was very much like,
“You know you’re really not supposed to be wearing gold right? You know you’re really not supposed to be wearing jewelry right?“
It was like this for a while, as I was was trying to be faithful to what I clearly believed I was reading in First Timothy.
This Changed EVERYTHING!
I read the passage in the Bible which made me swallow any pride I had. And ultimately repent of my false teaching!
In First Peter we see him write:
First Peter Reads (1 Pt 3:3-4):
“Whose adorning let it not be that outward [adorning] of plaiting the hair, and of wearing of gold, or of putting on of apparel; But [let it be] the hidden man of the heart, in that which is not corruptible, even the [ornament] of a meek and quiet spirit, which is in the sight of God of great price.“
The 4 Final Words…
For the longest time I did not just allow Peter to say what he is actually saying. As one day I was reading this, the last four words stopped me dead in my tracks.
“putting on of apparel“
I said wait hold on…
“Did Peter just actually say what I thought he said?“
It is not about the plaiting of the hair, of wearing gold, or the putting on of apparel. And on this particular day as I read this I asked myself…
“The putting on of apparel is basically putting on clothes and I am pretty certain, Peter was not saying in the Bible, women should not be putting on clothes“
And why did this stop me in my tracks? If Peter said not to wear gold, or not to plait your hair, then this ultimately has to be saying, women should not wear clothes.
And you know Peter was not saying this right?
Should Christians Wear Jewelry based on Peter’s letter? Peter is instructing women to focus on humility and not being influential through showing off, but jewelry was allowed in the context.
THIS PROVES TOO MUCH
When you read the whole passage in context, Peter is trying to get the woman to realise you do not go about changing people by showing off with fancy hairdos, costly jewelry, or just wearing nice clothes. But your inner person should change and motivate someone, to change what they are actually doing.
WHY THIS IS DIFFICULT?
Some people are going to bring up other passages which I am going to give you the answers for in a moment.
But before this, the reason I said earlier on this may be difficult for me is because I know deep down many people (men and women included) who wear too much jewelry, are too flamboyant, and too focused on showing off.
I cannot be consumed, or allow extremes to prevent me from just delivering the message I believe from the scripture. If someone is going to breach what the Bible says, they will do it anyway, whether or not the Bible is in agreement with what they are doing.
ISAIAH SAID NO JEWELRY?
Some people point to Isaiah, who is one of the most famous prophets in the Old Testament. And point to something in his book they believe proves Christians should not wear jewelry!
Isaiah Reads (Isaiah 3:18:-23):
“The chains, and the bracelets, and the mufflers,The bonnets, and the ornaments of the legs, and the headbands, and the tablets, and the earrings, The rings, and nose jewels,“
They read this passage in Isaiah and say God is going to take away all of these different things, so therefore this means, Christians should not be wearing jewelry.
Even if this was saying what they believe it is saying, Firstly this implies and indicates to us that before this particular time, they were obviously wearing jewelry freely.
That would ultimately mean any case made before Isaiah wrote about not wearing jewelry would actually have no basis! As God would be saying now, jewelry is actually being taken away. And up until this point, jewelry would have been fine! But I will still show you how to handle any points brought up before Isaiah about wearing Jewelry in the Bible later in this article.
ISAIAH PROVES TOO MUCH
Secondly, this Isaiah passage proves too much for those trying to use it as valid reasoning why you should not wear jewelry. And this is because they were being judged for being proud. Not because they were wearing jewelry in the first place.
And this nicely fits the context of First Timothy, and obviously First Peter. As they are both saying do not continue wearing these things to puff yourself up and to boast yourself, therefore they line up with Isaiah as well.
4 MORE PROBLEMS!
And then if you want to follow the context of Isaiah through, this poses at least four problems for the context. These women would be:
- Being scarred
- Wearing clothes of mourning
- Would be bald
- And they would be stinky
Another set of problems if you hold this view, is there are items most would not say are forbidden, which are mentioned as well. If you are going to be consistent, you have to forbid the following items:
- Changes Of Clothes
- And Headbands
Now just a little additional context like I have given you in Isaiah, deals a big blow to this claim. Can you see why saying Christians should not be wearing jewelry based on Isaiah is wrong?
JEWELRY BEFORE ISAIAH
In the first book of the Bible Genesis, we see a man named Eliezer giving his master’s daughter-in-law gold bracelets and one golden earring of half a shekel weight.
“And it came to pass, as the camels had done drinking, that the man took a golden earring of half a shekel weight, and two bracelets for her hands of ten [shekels] weight of gold“
Now some may say we cannot follow what men do or what men say (looking at what Eliezer did in Genesis). And you should be following what God says over men, which is true.
However, do you remember what I was saying about Isaiah previously?
The women were not being judged for wearing jewelry, they were being judged for being lifted up in pride. And it all came down to their sin and not their jewelry in an of itself. This is also before Isaiah, so even those claiming Isaiah forbade jewellery, should not have a problem with this example from Genesis should they?
But then again, we have covered Isaiah anyway previously in this writing.
YOU USE JEWELRY FOR IDOLS
Should Christians wear jewelry if it can be used for evil Israel? I know you may object to this example if you are fighting for a view contrary to mine, as later in Genesis a man named Jacob, who told his family to follow the Lord wholly, requested they hand over items used for idol worship. The problem you will face is, the items were used for false/idol worship. And not due to earrings or jewels handed over being inherently wrong.
You should know this from your reading through the book of Exodus, which is the very next book after Genesis. When you read about the Israelites (who are God’s chosen people) leaving Egypt. The Bible teaches you how they were leaving with jewels of gold and jewels of silver.
You should also know this from even later on in the book of Exodus, where you read the Israelite women, and the children are wearing earrings anyway.
“Aaron said unto them, Break off the golden earrings, which [are] in the ears of your wives, of your sons, and of your daughters, and bring [them] unto me.“
GOD ACCEPTED THE JEWELRY!
You may say this jewelry was what used to fashion a false idol. But if you are honest, this is not the point is it? The point you should see is they were wearing jewelry.
They were wearing jewelry, and you see God did not say anything about this. It was fine, it was acceptable. And even after this, when God says take off your jewelry, the reason he said this, was because they had actually had a feast. And they were celebrating as if they had actually done something good.
They actually had to humble themselves at this point (which lines up with Isaiah, First Timothy and First Peter). And basically realise this was not a time to celebrate, this was not a good time, as they were waiting for judgment coming from God.
A BIG PROBLEM IF YOU USE THIS AS A DEFENCE…
Even more problematic for you, if you use this as a defence for why Christians should not wear jewelry, is what actually happens a few pages later. Later in Exodus God is actually requesting the people bring a freewill offering. And what do they bring?
- Gold bracelets
- And different jewels of gold
You read how they brought gold bracelets, gold earrings, rings, tablets and different jewels of gold for God’s offering. So if you try and complain saying they made a false idol with these earrings, you have to be consistent and say, they made a freewill offering to God with the same jewels here. I would remind you, these golden jewels offered made the sacred things in the temple and God did not have a problem with it. Nor did he condemn it!
it is so clear for you if you want to be true to what the Bible actually teaches in context. They had jewelry before they made the idol, they had jewelry after they made the idol. And even offered some of this jewelry to God as an offering and it was acceptable in God’s eyes.
OUR BODIES ARE TEMPLES!
If you say the New Testament says your body is your temple, which is true, and therefore you should not be putting holes through your body. I will just give you one example from the book of Exodus.
This is where God tells the people what to do if you have someone who is in servitude to his master and loves their master and family so much. So much so, he no longer desires to work for anybody else. If he wants to work his whole life for this one individual, God said, that person should come out freely and say it, then a hole should be bored through their ear.
As a sign they wished to serve this one individual for the rest of their life, they would undergo this procedure. So putting holes in your body as a blanket statement is not a really valuable defence in regards to why you should not wear jewelry as a Christian.
TWO MORE QUICK EXAMPLES!
You also see in the New Testament the popular parable of the prodigal son. When you read of the son returning back home, after leaving his father and brother, one of the things you see him given for example is a ring. Jesus obviously gave you this parable, and if there was a problem with jewelry, I do not think Jesus, would ever have given an example of the forgiving, loving father, giving to his retuning wicked son a ring.
Wearing a piece of jewelry as a Christian was not problematic as you have clearly seen. Also in the book of James, James discuses someone in the congregation, wearing extravagant clothes and a gold ring. So should Christians wear jewelry? Can you see how wearing jewelry is not frowned upon for you! UNLESS IT IS CAUSING YOU OR OTHERS TO SIN. And the question is, is the jewelry you are wearing now causing you to sin? If it is, you know what you have to do right?
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