Nudists are people who hold to the philosophy that an unclothed existence can lead to many health benefits. Many nudists view nakedness as “more natural” and could also be labeled as “naturists”—those who believe in returning to nature. For the nudist, any activity of daily life can be done naked, whether it’s gardening, taking a hike, or connecting in their communities and clubs. Adam and Eve were naked in the Garden of Eden, right? Is this something a Christ follower should try?
Various pagan cultures throughout time had no problem with public nudity. It was common for the people of Sparta, Rome, and Greece, to walk around naked throughout the day. Even the original Olympics played done in the nude to show off each competitor’s physiques!
Of course, when we talk about “going back to nature,” this infers the belief that humans started as animalistic or evolved from an animal state. Biblically speaking, our “beginning” was as fully formed, intelligent creations of God. "Going back to nature" denies that we were crafted to CARE for nature, not submit to it. (See Genesis 2)
Much of the world seems to accept the nudist philosophy—excepting those of most other religious faiths or politically conservative values. But the Bible tells us that public nudity is a shameful act. Yes, while Adam and Eve were the first humans God created and THEY first were naked with no shame (Genesis 2:25), that was before the first sin, which revealed their nakedness (Genesis 3).
Before they chose to disobey God, Adam and Eve were completely innocent. After they sinned, they understood the difference between good and evil, and their nakedness was the first sign to them that they had gone against their Creator. Once they realized they were naked, Adam and Eve hurried to cover themselves up with leaves because they were ashamed (Genesis 3:10).
Despite their disobedience, God showed mercy, love, and compassion to Adam and Eve by sacrificing animals to make clothing with the skins (Genesis 3:21). At that point, they could never return to their innocent state again, and God communicated that clothing was needed to survive in the fallen world.
Throughout the Bible, since that first sin, nudity has been equated with shamefulness and disgrace (Genesis 9:21; Exodus 20:26; Isaiah 47:3; Ezekiel 16:35-36; Luke 8:27; Revelation 3:17, 17:16).
The only time in the Bible when public nakedness is not seen as sin is during that state of innocence before Adam and Eve chose disobedience. Nudity is honored in the privacy of solitude, between godly parents/caregivers as they care for their another's hygiene, and between a husband and wife in the context of marriage (Song of Solomon 4). If you need to be partially naked for medical purposes, doctor's appointments, etc., that is not a sin either. (Remember that ANYONE who asks to see any part of your body for any reason should not do so without your very clear consent.)
While human beings were initially created without shame of their nakedness, after sin entered our reality, many of those beautiful, good things God had made became perverted by sin—including nudity. In today’s fallen world, nudity is an opportunity for lustful, selfish thoughts and actions to take root in the mind. Nudity can lead to sexual violence, immorality, and confusion. Now that the innocence of Eden is gone, we must guard our hearts and bodies against sexual immorality and cover our nakedness.
Christians should not practice the nudist philosophy. Even though the first humans were naked when they were created, they lost their innocence due to their disobedience to God. God clothed Adam and Eve once their innocence died, which was how He communicated that clothes would be necessity for survival in a fallen world (Genesis 2:25, 3:10, 3:21). Throughout the Bible, since that first sin, nudity has been equated with shamefulness and disgrace (Luke 8:27; Revelation 3:17, 17:16).
Today, nakedness is only honored in the privacy of solitude, between godly parents/caregivers as they care for their another's hygiene, and between a husband and wife in the context of marriage (Song of Solomon 4). If you need to be partially naked for medical purposes, doctor's appointments, etc., that is not a sin either. Remember that ANYONE who asks to see any part of your body for any reason should not do so without your very clear consent.
Vivian loves learning, studying the Word of God, and helping others in their walk with Christ. She is dedicated to helping people learn more about Jesus and is ready to help in any way she can. Her favorite things to do are spending time with her family and friends, cooking, drawing, and spending time outside. When she is not writing, you can find her soaking up the sunshine or going on an adventure.