The Review and Herald

1051/1902

January 30, 1900

Disease and Its Causes

EGW

Some receive the idea that in order to carry out that separation from the world that the word of God requires, they must be neglectful of their apparel. There is a class of sisters who think they are carrying out the principle of non-conformity to the world by wearing an ordinary sunbonnet, and the same dress worn by them through the week, upon the Sabbath, when appearing in the assembly of the saints to engage in the worship of God. And some men who profess to be Christians view the matter of dress in the same light. These persons assemble with God's people upon the Sabbath, with their clothing dusty and soiled, and even with gaping rents in their garments, which are placed upon their persons in a slovenly manner. This class, if they had an engagement to meet a friend honored by the world, by whom they wished to be especially favored, would exert themselves to appear in his presence with the best apparel that could be obtained; for this friend would feel insulted were they to come into his presence with their hair uncombed, and garments uncleanly and in disorder. Yet these persons think that it is no matter in what dress they appear, or what is the condition of their persons, when they meet upon the Sabbath to worship the great God. They assemble in his house, which is as the audience chamber of the Most High, where heavenly angels are in attendance, with but little respect, or reverence, as their persons and clothing indicate. Their whole appearance typifies the character of such men and women. RH January 30, 1900, Art. B, par. 1

The favorite theme of this class is pride of dress. Decency, taste, and order they regard as pride. And according to the dress of these mistaken souls will be their conversation, their acts, and their deal. They are careless, and often low in their conversation at their homes, among their brethren, and before the world. The dress and its arrangement upon the person is generally found to be the index of the man or the woman. Those who are careless and untidy in dress are seldom elevated in their conversation, and possess but little refinement of feeling. They sometimes consider oddity and coarseness humility. RH January 30, 1900, Art. B, par. 2

The followers of Christ are represented by him as the salt of the earth and the light of the world. Without the saving influence of Christians, the world would perish in its own corruption. Look upon the class of professed Christians described, who are careless in their dress and person; loose in their business transactions, as their dress represents; coarse, uncourteous, and rough in their manners; low in their conversation; at the same time regarding these miserable traits as marks of true humility and Christian life. Think you that if our Saviour were upon earth, he would point to them as being the salt of the earth and the light of the world?—No, never! RH January 30, 1900, Art. B, par. 3

Christians are elevated in their conversation; and although they believe it to be sin to condescend to foolish flattery, they are courteous, kind, and benevolent. Their words are those of sincerity and truth. They are faithful in their deal with their brethren and with the world. In their dress they avoid superfluity and display; but their clothing will be neat, not gaudy, modest, and arranged upon the person with order and taste. Especial care will be taken to dress in a manner that will show a sacred regard for the holy Sabbath and the worship of God. The line of demarkation between such a class and the world will be too plain to be mistaken. The influence of believers would be tenfold greater if men and women who accept the truth, who have been formerly careless and slack in their habits, would be so elevated and sanctified through the truth as to observe habits of neatness, order, and good taste in their dress. Our God is a God of order, and he is not in any degree pleased with distraction, with filthiness, or with sin. RH January 30, 1900, Art. B, par. 4

Christians should not take pains to make themselves gazingstocks by dressing different from the world. But if, in accordance with their faith and duty in respect to their dressing modestly and healthfully, they find themselves out of fashion, they should not change their dress in order to be like the world. But they should manifest a noble independence, and moral courage to be right, if all the world differs from them. If the world introduces a modest, convenient, and healthful mode of dress, which is in accordance with the Bible, it will not change our relation to God or to the world to adopt such a style of dress. Christians should follow Christ, and conform their dress to God's word. They should shun extremes. They should humbly pursue a straightforward course, irrespective of applause or of censure, and should cling to the right because of its own merits. RH January 30, 1900, Art. B, par. 5