It should be a little out of the norm, and it is. Today we tackle a surprisingly common phenomenon, made super convenient by the technology of the smartphone. Of course, we’re talking about nude pictures.
This is part of a developing conversation in our culture. In recent years, it has been shocking how many kids have naked pictures on their phones, private pictures sent between them and a boyfriend or girlfriend. Now the practice is even extending to elderly folks.
This week the Masvingo Mirror reported that an elder with one of the largest indigenous churches in Mucheke is in trouble after she inadvertently sent several of her nude pictures to the church WhatsApp group. She was totally naked when the pictures which are obviously selfies were taken.
Sources said that Mai Munemo, who goes to the church in Sisk has since been relegated as a deacon and is no longer coming to church.
Mai Munemo, who was called for a comment blamed a neighbour’s child for the mishap. She said her neighbour’s child plays games on the phone each time she takes the gadget for charging. She said the child must have sent the pictures by mistake.
Mai Munemo who appeared to be shocked took ownership of the pictures and said she took them for fun.
“It was my neighbour’s who sent them. They are my pictures and I took them for fun.”
Now, that this ‘nudity culture’ is so persisting, let’s hear what the biblical authority have to say about it.
When God created man and woman, it says in Genesis 2:25,
“The man and his wife were both naked and were not ashamed.”
That guilt-free, shame-free existence came to an end when Adam and Eve sinned, and their first experience after that sin was guilt and blame and shame. And so, in Genesis 3:7 it says,
“The eyes of both were opened, and they knew that they were naked. And they sewed fig leaves together and made themselves loincloths.”
Then God had mercy on them in Genesis 3:21. It says,
“The Lord God made for Adam and for his wife garments of skins and clothed them.”
God’s plan for the lifting of that shame is the sacred relationship of marriage, just like marriage is the reversal of numerous elements of the curse. The freedom that we are to discover is not on stage: Let’s take our clothes off in movies and on stage. It is not in front of boyfriends or girlfriends. It is not in front of our phones. It is the profound respect and love and security of a covenant relationship called marriage. That is where people of the most ordinary looks can be free from shame.
However, outside that relationship, God treats nakedness as one of the most vivid forms of divine judgment.
“Your nakedness shall be uncovered, and your disgrace shall be seen. I will take vengeance, and I will spare no one.” Isaiah 47:3
“Jerusalem sinned grievously; therefore she became filthy; all who honoured her despise her, for they have seen her nakedness; she herself groans and turns her face away.” Lamentations 1:8,
In other words, nakedness in the covenant bed of marriage is a beautiful and thrilling thing for God’s children. But nakedness outside that relationship is a manifestation of divine judgment, even though we have been taught by the media, movie industry and by certain notorious stars to regard nudity as a form of power and distinction and fame.
The Bible says:
“They glory in their shame,” (Philippians 3:19).
It follows from this understanding of nakedness and clothing that the apostle Paul would say,
“Women should adorn themselves in respectable apparel, with modesty and self-control…with what is proper for women who profess godliness” (1 Timothy 2:9–10).
In the Song of Solomon, which exults in nudity between a married man and woman, it says, more than once,
“I adjure you, O daughters of Jerusalem, by the gazelles or the does of the field, that you not stir up or awaken love until it pleases” (Song 2:7)
That is exactly what sexually erotic pictures do that we are not supposed to do. They stir up desire that cannot be lawfully satisfied, like adultery, masturbation or fornication. To take such pictures is virtually certain that they will go public sooner or later, and you will discover what God meant by bringing judgment on yourself.
So on behalf of God to everyone of his children, male and female, don’t ever take pictures of a naked you or ask to see anyone naked except your spouse. Never offer to show yourself to someone naked for erotic or sexual reasons—not medical reasons—except to your spouse. Don’t do it in person and don’t do it in pictures.
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