They Could Not Blush

By Robert F. Turner

The fat is in the sun  and, we may add, “in the fire” for all who question the various stages of undress seen in the stores and on the streets these days. The more angular and misshapen the woman, or the more knobby-kneed the man, the less propriety and modesty is shown. And no one blushes!

Jeremiah prophesied against Jerusalem saying, “Were they ashamed when they had committed abomination? Nay, they were not at all ashamed, neither could they blush …” (Jer. 6:15a).

They could not blush. It is a terrible thing when a people can no longer blush. It means there is no sense of shame  the conscience is seared. They have so lowered their standards that “abominations” appear acceptable. Self-respect has been destroyed, and there is no personal pride to urge them to better, higher, more noble attainments. Their moral “slip shows” and they “couldn’t care less.”

Further, they frequently compound their degradation by a blas√© smugness, as though their calloused hearts were marks of high honor. He who blushes (should one remain) is a “square,” or maybe a “cube.”

Once my wife and I visited a woman whose attire was almost non-existent. We were so embarrassed for her that we sought to excuse ourselves; but apparently she thought her clothing (?) perfectly adequate. She sat, chatting gaily, until her three-year-old, wearing training panties, walked into the room. Then she rushed the child away with a “spat” saying, “You know better than to come in here undressed like that!” I suppose psychology has some explanation for it.

Paul commends “shamefastness”  a word meaning “bound, or controlled by a sense of shame  modesty.” As a bedfast person is “bound” to the bed by physical disability, so a shame-fast person has a built in sense of right or propriety that “binds” and forbids appearing in public carelessly or improperly clothed (1 Tim. 2:8-10).

When a friend a mine commented on the gross immodesty that prevailed in a western resort city, he was told, “After awhile you’ll get used to it.” My friend replied that he hoped not.

“Getting used to” something that degrades character and lowers moral standards is no inducement to one who can still blush and is proud of it (Reprint from Stuff About Things, p. 33, by permission).

(I recently had the pleasure and profit of reading brother Turner’s book, Stuff About Things. It was published in 1976 as a collection of articles which had appeared in the monthly bulletin he edited for many years for the Oaks-West Church of Christ in Burnet, Texas. After reading the book, I re-quested permission from. bother Turner to reprint some of my favorites, which he graciously granted. I appreciate his granting this permission, and trust our readers will find the same pleasure and profit which I have found. Ron Halbrook, 654 Gray Street, West Columbia, TX 77486)

Guardian of Truth XL: 9 p. 13
May 2, 1996