I was taught the term clothes line preaching when I met a pastor that said they never have clothes line preaching in their church.
The first time I visited their church I heard what type of preaching he was speaking about.
Sadly, He said he didn’t preach that way and then he did it.
I believe I was given keen discernment about his double standard of speech when he tried to manipulate words to explain why he felt people should in fact dress the way the people around them are dressed.
The young lady with me that day didn’t think he was manipulating words to try to encourage women to wear dresses but I recalled the conversations I had with the minister before we went to the church.
I had made it clear to that pastor before visiting their church that I did not want to offend people if they were used to teaching a strict rule encouraging the women to only wear dresses. What good sense is there in attending a church where they do things you don’t want to take part in doing? I knew there can be lots of bondage to man made rules in a church if the pastor and other leaders encouraged those teachings. It is never my goal to be in a church where they try to place women in bondage that way. He was the one that said there was no clothes line preaching in his place. Was it an accident that he felt a need to share his particular view (not Scriptures on the subject) about how he felt people should dress? Later on during the time of that visit to his church he let me know that a person could visit their church but their guidelines were so strict that no woman would ever be allowed to be a servant working at their church unless she only wore dresses when she was going to be a servant in that place. Why didn’t he tell me that when I asked about it before we visited their church? I wonder if he (like so many other churches of that type) planned on having people visit then they would try to change your way of thinking, if possible. It did appear as though he was ignorantly trying to change our way of thinking the first time we visited. I reminded him after the service that I did not want to offend anyone. He said that it did not offend him if women wore pants to church but women who wore anything other than dresses couldn’t serve the Lord at that place of fellowship. He said one thing with his mouth then he said another thing. He had proven to me without a doubt that he did not appreciate or respect women unless those women were going to follow his strict guidelines. His rules were not Scripturally based rules but still he was going to do everything he could to deny the truth about the subject. His mind was apparently closed by the years of bondage he lived under. People in those type of churches are sure they are right about this subject. They’ve lived in the same bondage for years. Jesus is the only one that can help them understand the truth about it, if they will ask the Lord for the truth.
Someone who visited the church with me that day told me she would never be able to agree to those type of rules because she sincerely does not believe in this odd teaching for women to be bound to wear dresses only as if that proved the woman was closer to God or holier than other people. If the pastor would have been totally honest with me in conversations prior to our visit to that church we wouldn’t have bothered going to their services that day.
We are saved by grace not by works so that no man may boast. I believe this also means a woman is not saved by the clothing she puts on her body. God’s Word says a woman should not wear man’s clothing. When those passages were written there were no pants or slacks worn by male or female. There was a description of an undergarment that was to be worn to protect people from seeing things that should not be seen.