What Men Prophesied Stark Naked?
The great and powerful prophet Isaiah walked naked for three years in Jerusalem as a sign that the Egyptians and Ethiopians would be carried captive to Assyria "with their buttocks uncovered" (Isaiah 20:1-6). Micah, who lived at the same time of Isaiah, resorted to the same procedure to make his points clear to the Jews at the time (Micah 1:8). So did King Saul while under the influence of the spirit of God (I Samuel 19:22-24). The word "naked" in all these instances is the same word which described the nakedness of Adam and Eve before God gave them coverings, and the same word was used by Job when he said" "Naked came I out of my mothers womb" (Job 1:21; Ecclesiastes 5:15). Strange as it may seem to us in modern times, this behavior was fully sanctioned by God and it was motivated by the Spirit of God. Do not be misled by modern, prudish preachers, priests and theologians who tell you that all three men of God wore loin clothes or short pants. Without doubt, Job did not come out of his mothers womb with boxer shorts covering his private parts. But the preachers forget all about the examples of Isaiah, Micah and King Samuel and they tell the people that nakedness (this is, simple uncovering of the body in public) is forbidden by God. They are wrong. What one must ask is whether the general society accepts such nakedness as proper. Indeed, from the biblical point of view, simple nakedness in particular societies is not viewed as crass by God (note the old National Geographic Magazines of naked men and women in various parts of the world that even the prudish societies in America and Britain accepted as proper to depict in the 1940s and 1950s)
Then there was Kind David who rejoiced with leaping and dancing (II Samuel 6:16) ("David danced before the Lord with all his might" II Samuel 6:14) to the extent that he was criticized by his wife Michal. She noted that David "uncovered himself in the eyes of the handmaids of his servants, as one of the vain fellows shamelessly uncovereth himself" (II Samuel 6:20). His kilt-like garment did not sufficiently provide him with a covering to hide his private parts while he danced so vigorously. But David was dancing in a religious service to God and though he admitted his act could have been construed as being vile in front of the women spectators, he retorted to Michal that he would even be more vile and base by asking God to vindicate him (II Samuel 6:22). God backed up Davids appraisal of himself by closing up Michals womb for the rest of her life. She was punished for criticizing King David (II Samuel 6:23).
Now, all these men had the blessings of God accorded to them for their actions. In spite of this, I want all my readers to note that I am not recommending nudity as a way of life or as a way to gain attention in this modern world (nor am I advocating vigorous dancing without some kind of garment to hide certain parts of the human anatomy).
We moderns, however, should not avoid the fact that God does not care one way or the other if the buttocks are uncovered in public as long as the practice is accepted as proper in the society and indecent behavior is avoided at all costs. Oh yes, when God said for the members of the family not to uncover their nakedness (Leviticus 18:6 passim), all commentators know that this meant for the purpose of illicit sexual encounters. These verses in Leviticus have not reference to simple nakedness itself. The Bible is far less prudish than most people think it to be.
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