In certain countries SeventhDay Adventist see no wrong in wearing jewelry, wheras in certain countries it is prohibited, don't we have the same beliefs throughout so why are some of us looking different?
I think the Bible lacks clear guidance against jewelery, it is only Adventist tradition that promotes avoiding jewelry. However, even though it is traditionally considered improper, it is NOT one of our official "28 fundamental beliefs."
When the Bible does not give CLEAR guidance we have to look at the principle of the matter.
The original principle of the "no jewelery" tradition has to do with "modesty." However, in cultures where jewelry is common and everyone wears it, it is hard to consider it immodest because it's not anything unique or fancy.
I live in a culture where it is very common to wear jewelry. I choose not to wear it because I do not want to offend others and my more conservative family members and friends. It is simply not important enough to me even though I don't think it is wrong.
yes it do lack clear guidance. but it did tell us a little about it .remember the bible spoke about the false church which is represented by the woman deck out in jewelry , and the true church is represented by the pure woman with no jewelry. and then peter stated that woman should dress modestly not with gold are sliver etc. anyway it was hard for me to stop wear them because i use to love jewelry a lot. but i think that it helps to separate us from the world , GOD said that we should come out of the world and be separated living in the world and yet not of the world . non Christians wear jewelry so i don't think that we as Christians should.
Once again, a cultural difference... but seriously, how is this different than makeup in principle? Both are putting on unnatural things to improve on what we naturally are.
So is wearing deodorant vanity? I don't think so. But could an expensive perfume become vanity for some person. Probably yes. I think it is the same with makeup. It is not bad in and of itself. It, like deodorant, can be helpful.
Only when either thing makes us focus on ourselves and how great we are do they become vanity.
"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" (1 Peter 3:3,4).
1. Modesty - jewelry is used to exalt self, we need to be denying self.
2. Stewardship - can we justify the use of means on such objects when there are people dying for lack of medicine/food/potable water, etc.
3. Worldliness - it is not for us to imitate the follies and fashions of the world.
4. Day of Atonement - we believe that we are in the antitypical Day of Atonement. For ancient Israel this was a solemn day, the High Priest wore plain cloth cut from one piece to signify that our eye should be single at this time. It all comes back to denial of self and appetites. If we really are disciples of Christ then we will have no need to adorn ourselves with anything more than the character of Christ. Christ took off His kingly crown when incarnate on this earth. According to our beliefs we should be earnestly preparing ourselves for heaven, not for the world.
I see no good reason why we *should* wear jewelry and if it leads to self rising up then it is positively dangerous.
The following is interesting:
"Love of dress and pleasure is wrecking the happiness of thousands. And some of those who profess to love and keep the commandments of God ape this class as near as they possibly can and retain the Christian name. Some of the young are so eager for display that they are even willing to give up the Christian name if they can only follow out their inclination for vanity of dress and love of pleasure. Self-denial in dress is a part of our Christian duty. To dress plainly, abstaining from display of jewelry and ornaments of every kind, is in keeping with our faith. Are we of the number who see the folly of worldlings in indulging in extravagance of dress as well as in love of amusements? If so, we should be of that class who shun everything that gives sanction to this spirit which takes possession of the minds and hearts of those who live for this world only and who have no thought or care for the next." (Testimonies to the Churches Vol.3 p.366)
I would suggest that the same applies to face powder and other forms of makeup: are we *really* telling God that we can do a better job with our appearance? To what end? To appeal to the worldling?
The issue of jewelry is difficult because there is scripture on both sides of the issue. And most people don't like being on both sides. :-) Which scripture you choose to quote generally shows which way you want to interpret the Bible. And that might not be what the Bible is actually saying.
So if you think that jewelry should not be worn, you quote 1 Peter 3:3 (Whose adorning let it not be that outward adorning of plaiting the hair, and of wearing of gold, or of putting on of apparel…) and 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…).
Those texts make it sound like we shouldn't wear jewelry, right? It might even be a sin! What? There's more scripture? Yes... and it tends to give a different view of jewelry.
Ezek 16:11-13 says (and this is God talking to His people), “I decked thee also with ornaments, and I put bracelets upon thy hands, and a chain on thy neck. And I put a jewel on thy forehead, and earrings in thine ears, and a beautiful crown upon thine head. Thus wast thou decked with gold and silver; and thy raiment was of fine linen, and silk, and broidered work; thou didst eat fine flour, and honey, and oil: and thou wast exceeding beautiful, and thou didst prosper into a kingdom.”
This scripture shows how God blessed his people with jewelry and fine possessions of all kinds. He surely wouldn't do that if He thought it was sinful or even merely ill-advised, would He?
God, through the prophet Jeremiah said, "Can a maid forget her ornaments, or a bride her attire? Yet my people have forgotten me days without number.” (Jer 2:32)
God makes the comparison between people forgetting about Him, to a maid forgetting about her jewelry. Both seem impossible, but people did forget God. And He marveled at it.
The prophet Isaiah praised God by saying "I will greatly rejoice in the LORD, my soul shall be joyful in my God; for he hath clothed me with the garments of salvation, he hath covered me with the robe of righteousness, as a bridegroom decketh himself with ornaments, and as a bride adorneth herself with her jewels.” (Isa 61:10)
David, the man after God's own heart, said "As an earring of gold, and an ornament of fine gold, so is a wise reprover upon an obedient ear.” (Ps. 25:12)
Joseph, a mighty man of God, wore jewelry in Egypt. "And Pharaoh took off his ring from his hand, and put it upon Joseph's hand, and arrayed him in vestures of fine linen, and put a gold chain about his neck...” (Gen 41:42)
The story of Rebekah and Isaac is a beautiful story. When Abraham's servant went to find her for Isaac it is described like this: "And I asked her, and said, whose daughter art thou? And she said, the daughter of Bethuel, Nahor's son, whom Milcah bare unto him: and I put the earring upon her face, and the bracelets upon her hands. And I bowed down my head, and worshipped the LORD, and blessed the LORD God of my master Abraham, which had led me in the right way to take my master's brother's daughter unto his son.” Beatiful and romantic! And also spiritual and led by God.
And it's not just Old Testament stories. Jesus Himself, in the parable of the prodigal son told the story. "But the father said to his servants, bring forth the best robe, and put it on him; and put a ring on his hand…” I don't believe that Jesus would include a sinful practice as part of His parable.
I think the entire weight of scripture clearly shows that God does NOT condemn jewelry. In fact, He gave it as gifts to His people.
But back to Peter and Paul's texts as quoted at the very top. What are they saying if God does not condemn jewelry? I believe they are saying that we should be more concerned about our spirituality (our inner beauty) than our outer beauty (jewelry, fine clothes, etc.). Jewelry is like every other good thing from God. We as sinful humans can abuse it! And we do. All the time.
But we don't abuse jewelry and other fine things by simply owning and using them. We abuse them by placing them before God. If we place ANYTHING between us and God we commit a terrible sin! Even if it's a beautiful new car. Let nothing come in between us and God.
But that does not mean we can't own and use finery or even nice cars. No! We can own and drive nice cars (and own and wear jewelry) as long as NOTHING comes between us and God. THAT is the key relationship. Jewelry (or ANYTHING in this world) can get in the way of this relationship. We should guard diligently against that happening. But we shouldn't refrain from owning and driving a car just because it might get in the way of our relationship with God any more than we should refrain from owning and wearing jewelry and fine things.
Looking at ALL the scripture on this topic, God clearly does not condemn jewelry. After all, He gave it as gifts to His people. But God clearly does condemn turning away from Him. THAT is the issue.
The church and the Spirit of Prophecy put it clear on matters regarding jewelry. Below are Abstracts and quotations from the Church Manual and Spirit of Prophecy.
“To dress plainly, abstaining from display of jewelry and ornaments of every kind, is in keeping with our faith.”—Testimonies, vol. 3, p. 366.
It is clearly taught in the Scriptures that the wearing of jewelry is contrary to the will of God. ‘. . . not with broided hair, or gold, or pearls, or costly array’ is the admonition of the apostle Paul (1 Tim. 2:9). wearing of ornaments of jewelry is a bid for attention which is not in keeping with Christian self-forgetfulness.
In some countries the custom of wearing the wedding ring is considered imperative, having become, in the minds of the people, a criterion of virtue, and hence it is not regarded as an ornament. Under such circumstances we have no disposition to condemn the practice.
As Seventh-day Adventists we have been called out from the world. We are reformers. True religion which enters into every phase of life must have a molding influence on all our activities. Our habits of life must stem from principle and not from the example of the world about us. Customs and fashions may change with the years, but principles of right conduct are always the same. Dress is an important factor in Christian character. Early in our history instruction was given as to the way Christians should dress, the purpose of which was “to protect the people of God from the corrupting influence of the world, as well as to promote physical and moral health. . . .”—Testimonies, vol. 4, p. 634.
Christians should avoid gaudy display and “profuse ornamentation.” Clothing should be, when possible, “of good quality, of becoming colors, and suited for service. It should be chosen for durability rather than display.” Our attire should be characterized by “modesty,” “beauty,” “grace,” and “appropriateness of natural simplicity.”—Messages to Young People, pp. 351, 352
The adoption of fads and extreme fashions in men’s or women’s dress indicates a lack of attention to serious matters. Regardless of how sensibly people generally may dress, there are always extremes in style that transgress the laws of modesty and thus have a direct bearing on the prevalence of immoral conditions. Many who blindly follow the styles are at least partly unconscious of these effects, but the results are no less disastrous. The people of God should always be found among the conservatives in dress, and will not let “the dress question fill the mind.”—Evangelism, p. 273