Holy Heavenly Nudity, Batman!

February 11, 2009

Hey, it’s time for our first ever ‘Point / Counterpoint!’

I was reminded a couple of days ago about a friendly debate I had some years back with a couple of friends. As is typical with intelligent college students, we were using our time and talents to debate only the most important and pressing matters facing our society. Our topic on this particular day was:

Is heaven going to be a nudist resort?

That’s not what we actually called it, but to be honest, that’s what we were debating. My friends, who took the ‘negative’ side, cited various evidences that people in heaven do in fact wear clothes:
1. All visitors from heaven in the Bible are wearing clothes, be it non-descript clothing, or white robes, or fine linen. In the cases where the clothing is not described, the Bible at least does not say, ‘the dude was naked.’

2. The book of Revelation describes the elders, Jesus, and everyone else in heaven by what they are wearing – clothing.

3. God made clothes for Adam and Eve because they needed it in their sinful state, and it makes sense for clothes to still be useful in heaven. Also, naked people are gross. How would we ever deal with everyone being naked in heaven after wearing clothes on earth?
4. Angels are always portrayed with white robes. Where’d we get that idea?

I thoughtfully processed these compelling arguments, but decided I wanted to be a jerk that day because it was a Tuesday. My arguments ran thus:

1. FACT: Clothes are for us in our sinful states. In heaven we will not be sinners, thus have no need for clothes which cover shame.

2. FACT: We have no description of what heavenly bodies will be like. They may be nothing like our bodies here, though we will somehow be able to recognize each other.

3. FACT: The Bible is filled with physical descriptions of God that make him relatable to people, even though we all agree that they are symbolic. Isn’t it possible that being ‘clothed in white’ is an analogy for the brilliance of the glory we will be clothed with? Was the woman in Revelation really ‘clothed with the sun?’
4. FACT: Angels always wear white robes, eh? What about the ‘cherubs?’ Maybe we’ll all be prancing around as naked little cherub angels.

Case closed. Heaven is ‘clothing optional’ at the very least.

Or so I thought. Because as much as I like to think I won the argument that day, and that heaven will be a big nude-a-rama, the idea is just completely weird. For all I know, someone is reading this blog in a state of…immodesty right now. If that is the case, please correct this situation, and DON’T tell us about it. This is a family friendly place. But I also can’t imagine getting up in the morning in heaven and trying to decide which robe I’ll be wearing that day.
Part of the problem is that even as much ‘sex’ and ‘nudity’ as we have saturating our society, it’s still a big taboo, and we can’t separate one from the other. Anyone who says we’ll be naked in heaven sounds like a hedonist and a perv-ball.

So weigh in with your thoughts, and let’s get this figured out! Will we be wearing our Levi’s and Old Navy in the afterlife? Or dancing around in the buff like a bunch of Europeans?

2 responses to Holy Heavenly Nudity, Batman!

  1. I'm hoping for nude!

    Seriously, if we will be given a GLORIOUS PERFECT BODY, why wouldn't we want the result to be seen?

    And, if we will be neither sinful, nor horny, and if there is no cold weather to worry about, why should we want clothes?

    Why do we have such tactile skin if we are meant *forever* to feel life only with our head and hands?

    It only makes sense we'd be nude.

  2. Ice Queen:

    We definitely won't be mist.
    Mist can't move, or see, or touch or know anything.

    More to the point, "there is a natural body, and there is a spiritual body" (St. Paul in 1 Corinthians). We are experiencing our Natural Bodies right now; we can expect the Spiritual Bodies to be as bodily as the ones we're breathing in now.