Yesterday I threw out a poll question on my Facebook and Twitter pages. The poll question asked, "Should Christians wear attire with skulls on it?" I received some great comments from people with a variety of opinions. You can read the comments on my timeline from 8/8/13.
My opinion is that Christians should not wear clothes with skulls on them.
I don't have one specific Bible verse that I can use to prove my point. Jesus never said, "Thou shalt not wear clothes with skulls." I do however think there are number of conclusions that can be drawn from Scripture that support my opinion.
1. Jesus does care about the clothes we wear.
I don't believe God's people are free to wear whatever they want. From the Old Testament all the way through the New Testament you can find Biblical language related to clothes. There are laws in Leviticus about clothes. God instructed the OT priests on what to wear don't believe God's people are free to wear whatever they want.
2. Jesus does care about the image we portray to others.
The nation of Israel was set apart by God and was called to be a witness and example to the nations. Since Christ has come, his followers have taken over that role from Israel and are to be "a city of a hill" and "a light on a lamp stand." This certainly has implications for the way we dress. I think it is wise for Christians to look at the prevailing culture and ask themselves if they are setting a different example for that culture or if they are simply being swept along by it.
3. Jesus does care that what we wear honors Him.
I understand that a skull in itself is just a skull, the former home for a brain. At the zoo or the science museum a skull is a great thing to study and learn from. However, the symbolism of skulls on most clothing is not for scientific purposes. Skulls in the greater culture are much more commonly associated with death, black magic, pirating, rebellion, and all other sorts of evil, and dare I say, demonic, behaviors. This image and representation does not honor Jesus. I believe it is the mockery of Satan that has brought skulls to be paired now with crosses on t-shirts like this.
4. Jesus does care that we challenge fellow believers to live after a higher standard.
'Thou shalt not judge' - wow do people love this verse. Nothing is quoted more often by people who want to live free from the accountability of Jesus as expressed through the local church. True believers are called by God to hold one another accountable, to rebuke error and false teaching, to discipline those in the church who reject submission to God's Word, and to encourage one another's sanctification and growth. Saying that what other people wear is none of my business is simply not true. Yes, for those outside the family of faith, my concern is over a heart far from God, not over a t-shirt. But for those inside the faith family, I have the right, check that, the responsibility (if I am in a relationship with someone) to, at the very least, ask some questions.
5. Jesus does care that we connect every part of our life back to him.
What we wear needs to be filtered through our love of Christ. I need to examine my own heart and ask the tough questions about my attire.
- Is it pleasing to God?
- Does it distract from Jesus?
- Would I want to be wearing this when I meet Christ face to face?
- Do my clothes distract others from Jesus?
- Are my clothes about me looking good, or is Jesus looking good more important?
- Am I wearing this to seek the attention, affection or approval of others?
All of these are questions that should be ask when we look in our closets.
Those are 5 reasons why I don't wear clothes with skulls on them, why I won't let my kids do it, and why I think my brothers and sisters in faith shouldn't do it either. In the end it is all about Jesus and making him look good, and there is no way I can reconcile that desire with wearing skulls and the sort of symbolism they portray.