Recently, Pastor Ed Young of Fellowship Church in Dallas launched PastorFashion.com, a website dedicated to dispensing fashion tips to pastors. While, on the surface, this might seem like a ridiculous notion, one need step into any number of evangelical churches to notice the need for some timely fashion tips for our men of the cloth. Cotton and polyester need not be the only cloth we wear. Be that as it may, I do find it somewhat problematic that a pastor has taken it upon themselves to give style recommendations to other pastors. It seems like a waste of a pastor’s precious time and it is predicated upon the idea that outward appearances are a viable vehicle for communicating the gospel message.
A few practical reasons why I believe “fashionable pastors” is a bad idea:
1. There are far more pressing needs for pastors to focus their attention on.
a. Pastors (and the church) are called to care for the fatherless, the orphaned, and the widow. Mother Teresa was not known for her fashion sense. Billy Graham’s evangelistic crusades had very little to say about looking good for the sake of the gospel.
b. According to The Explicit Gospel, the church is mired in teaching a counterfeit gospel in the form of “Christian Moralistic Therapeutic Deism.” People are going to church week in and week out, hearing sermon after sermon, yet are walking away never having heard the actual gospel. If this is the case, then it seems like a pastor dressed in a burlap sack who preaches the gospel is more valuable than the guy with the Windsor knot who isn’t.
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