I’m a Christian Naturist
If you’ve been following this blog over the years, you know that I’ve not only claimed to be a Christian Naturist, but also a Naturist By Biblical Conviction.
Of course, having been raised like just about every other Christian in the United States, I was taught from childhood that social nudity was forbidden by God and that only in the context of marriage (or the doctor’s office) was it permitted to allow our unclothed bodies to be seen by anyone of the opposite gender.
When I first considered the claims of so-called “Christian Naturists” (which seemed an oxymoron at first), I had to evaluate them in light of the teachings of Scripture. And there were a bunch of Scriptures that I “knew” taught against social nudity.
The Scripture Test
Because I believe the Scriptures are inspired by God, I believe that they are true and authoritative. Consequently, my evaluation of naturism began by seeking to discern what God had revealed about His perspective on nudity. Whatever God revealed about the issue, that’s what I wanted my position to be.
And let me be very clear… My approach to Scripture on this matter was never to defend naturism, but rather to know what the Bible really teaches. And if that ever means my long-held views must be laid aside, then that’s what I’m committed to do.
So… when I began my study, I purposed to look at every passage that mentioned or implied nudity. I especially focused on those passages which had always been put forth to “prove” that God forbade social or casual nudity. I reexamined them to discern if we had been correct in our interpretation of them as it applies to the nudity issue.
I Was Quite Surprised…
To my surprise, not just one or two of the “anti-nudity” Scriptures turned out to be misinterpreted or misapplied, but every last one of them had been!
In other words, when I examined each and every passage that has been used to support a claim that social nudity is wrong, not a single one of them—when correctly and honestly interpreted—could satisfactorily justify a moral absolute that forbids social or casual nudity.
Some Passages Are More Challenging Than Others
As I pursued this study of God’s perspective on nudity, there certainly were some passages that seemed to be more antagonistic towards nudity than others, and as such, they presented more of a challenge to work through and discern if that’s really what they were teaching us.
I suspect that I’m not alone here in this observation… So, I’m asking you as my readers…
What’s been the most troubling or difficult passage of Scripture for you in reference to the practice of naturism by a Christian who wants to live in harmony with God’s Word?
- Maybe you’re an naturist already, but there’s one passage that’s still bugging you… Let me know and I’ll tell you what I have concluded on it.
- Maybe you’re just considering naturism, but you still can’t reconcile the practice with one or two verses in the Bible… Let me know what they are and I’ll share with you my perspective on them.
- Maybe you’re still pretty sure I’m dead wrong on my interpretation of the Scriptures in regards to nudity… tell me which passage or passages you believe most clearly and conclusively prove me wrong, and I’ll show you why I believe they have been misinterpreted and misapplied. If you still disagree, you are then invited to answer back. I always welcome honest dialog!
Everyone Points to a Different Scripture…
One of the interesting things I’ve observed over the past 7 or so years since I became a naturist is that those who oppose it “on Scriptural grounds” never seem to be in agreement on which Scripture most most clearly demonstrates that nudity is wrong. One person will stand immovably on one passage, while the next person is absolutely convinced that some other passage is “all the proof they need.”
To me, this underscores the fact that there simply IS no scripture passage that clearly teaches against social nudity… else everyone would automatically present the same passage. Consider these questions on morality and where we turn to declare God’s mind on the issue:
- Is adultery wrong? Yep. Exodus 20:14
- Is lying wrong? Yep. Exodus 20:16
- Murder? Exodus 20:13
- Theft? Exodus 20:15
- Homosexual sex? Leviticus 20:13
- Incest? Leviticus 18
- Lust? Matthew 5:28
- Social Nudity? … ah…. well… there’s no agreement on which specific scripture forbids it… but everyone knows that the Bible is against it, right?
See what I mean? We’ve been sold on the idea that nudity MUST BE forbidden in the Bible. And Everyone knows it, so we don’t need a specific passage that actually SAYS SO! If you need one to give to someone, just pick the one you like best. One is as good as the next… provided you don’t evaluate it very carefully.
Nonetheless, I welcome anyone who wishes to hear where I stand on the passage they find most difficult for naturists to “dodge.” And I promise… I won’t dodge!
It’s Been a Dry Spell for The Biblical Naturist.
I haven’t written on this blog recently… and it’s pretty much because I’ve addressed all the topics I set out to cover when I began the blog. So, I need some direction from you—the readers—to tell me what you’d like for me to cover next.
I look forward to hearing from you!
— Matthew Neal