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Sewing, Women, and the Bible

(This is another good example of bad exegesis. If you don’t appreciate humor, move along.)

Brothers and sisters, I’m here to tell you about what the Bible admonishes us about sewing. Godly women sew! Women of faith sew! Men? They need to just leave it alone. As usual, I’ll be moving around in the Holy text today.

The first mention of sewing was in Genesis after Eve ate from the fruit of the tree of the knowledge of good and evil. Then she gave to her husband. That reversed the proper order right there. They realized they were naked, and they took fig leaves. That had to be Adam’s idea because they only ended up sewing simple little loin cloths for themselves. I don’t have to go into much detail for you men and women about what was and wasn’t covered. Ever since then men have been trying to get women to wear less and less, and ungodly women have obliged.

But what do we read about Rahab? She was a woman of ill repute, a harlot, a prostitute even! And she lived in a city where all the people were doomed for utter destruction. But when she saved the lives of those spies Joshua sent, after taking them into her home, they realized that this woman could sew! She had a scarlet thread. We don’t know what she was planning on a-making with that thread, but she used that scarlet thread to make a a rope to let the spies down. The spies made sure Joshua and all the warriors knew, “When you get to the house of that lady who can sew, you don’t mess with her or her family!” I wish more women today were like that: sew and let the devil know you’re standing your ground!

Over in Job, we read about the results of a man trying to sew again. Old Job was in a bad way. He had lost his animals, his wealth, and his children. His wife remained. But did she sew? No! Old Job had torn his clothes as was the custom when a man suffered great loss. Now he was needing something to wear. He had to sew it himself! All he could manage was to stitch together some scraps and rags, probably like our burlap, and make himself a rough old piece of sackcloth to wear. If his wife had been a godly woman, she would have said, “Let me make you a new robe, honey! Or at least let me stitch up and repair the one you just tore!”

Ecclesiastes makes it very clear who is to do the sewing in the family. It tells us there is a time to tear apart, and a time to sew together. Who tears their clothes? Why, it’s little boys and their daddies. Men are rough on clothes. We do all the tearing, it seems, and the wives and mommas get to do all the repairing. Then it tells us there is a time for the woman to sew what was torn. This verse is about men and women. If you don’t believe it, just look at the second part of the verse: “a time to be silent, and a time to speak.” That ought to be clear that old Solomon is talking about men and then women. You hear men described as “the strong, silent type.” You never hear that used as a description for women. Women are talkers. Solomon knew that. He had a thousand women! What a ruckus it must have been when he went home of a night!

If you still believe men ought to lay their hand to the machine or put a thimble on that calloused old thumb, look no further than what Paul wrote in Galatians. He knew that men have no business sewing! He said, “whatever a man sews, that shall he also rip!” Let a man get in there and try to sew, and he’ll make a mess of it. Then he’ll have to rip out what he’s done and start over–or just do what he should have done in the beginning and give it to his wife to do right!

One final word, and this is an encouragement for the godly women here. Some of you are trying to save your family money, bless your hearts. But our Lord told us that nobody takes a new piece of cloth and tries to patch an old garment. If you do that, the tear gets worse, and both pieces are ruined. Sisters, just go out and buy some new cloth occasionally and make yourself a new dress! You deserve it for being a godly woman who sews! Amen and amen!

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