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Are there any verses in the Old or New Testaments that forbid a man from dressing like a woman?

My question was prompted by this news article about the Harvest Crusade event and the comments that followed.

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What is "man's clothing" and "woman's clothing"? – Les Aug 4 '14 at 17:04
up vote 20 down vote accepted

In the Mosaic Law, God strictly forbids this:

A woman shall not wear man’s clothing, nor shall a man put on a woman’s clothing; for whoever does these things is an abomination to the Lord your God. Deuteronomy 22:5 NASB

It must be stated, however, that this was specifically in the Mosaic Law, so it cannot necessarily be extended outside of the Jewish people and that covenant. In this case, however, it does not seem to be an issue of covenant, but an actual abomination to God.

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I agree 100% and believe this to be true. Can your words not also be true for Leviticus 11? – jlaverde Oct 2 '13 at 14:42
@jlaverde That passage seems to just speak of being ceremonially unclean. – Narnian Oct 2 '13 at 14:45
See for information about the translation word "abomination". Apparently it does not necessarily have the connotation in the original that it does in translation. – MετάEd Oct 2 '13 at 15:15
@MετάEd There are much more reliable resources for the meanings of biblical Hebrew words than wikipedia. – Narnian Oct 2 '13 at 15:22
I'm pretty sure any violator of the Law is classified as "an abomination to God." Is there actually a lesser level of offending God? There doesn't seem to be from my knowledge and study. – fredsbend Oct 4 '14 at 6:31

Deuteronomy 22: 5 is a very complicated verse with many different opinions and a variation in translation that is pertinent. Google it and see for yourself. I want to stick with what Maimonides said. Amonst the idolaters men wore women's clothing when honoring Venus and women put on armor when honorin Mars. Here it is the use made of the clothing/item that is important. The intention of the wearer not the garment. This eliminates a lot of the debate around unisex clothing, women in combat uniform, and as was the case in the article, men wearing women's clothing for a joke (common during Purim). Based on this, the sin for Christians is in the 'why', not the what. Was it done for idolatary? For immoral purposes? To deceive? Etc.

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One problem with that interpretation: Neither Mars nor Venus worship existed at the time Deuteronomy was written. The Mosaic Law predates Greco-Roman pantheon worship by nearly a millennium. – reirab Jun 5 '15 at 5:51

It says in Deuteronomy 22:5 (NIV) - "The woman shall not wear that which pertaineth unto a man, neither shall a man put on a woman's garment: for all that do so are abomination unto the Lord thy God."

I believe it applies to Christians too.

Jesus Christ obeyed all of the commandments in Auraytha (Aramaic word for Torah). We even see Jesus Christ criticizing Pharisees for setting aside God's commands to observe their human traditions.

Mark 7:8-9 (NIV) - "You have let go of the commands of God and are holding on to human traditions.” And he continued, “You have a fine way of setting aside the commands of God in order to observe your own traditions!"

Jesus Christ taught this (below)

Matthew 22:37-40 (KJV) - "Jesus said unto him, Thou shalt love the Lord thy God with all thy heart, and with all thy soul, and with all thy mind. This is the first and great commandment. And the second is like unto it, Thou shalt love thy neighbour as thyself. On these two commandments hang all the law and the prophets."

"Thou shalt love the Lord thy God with all thy heart, and with all thy soul, and with all thy mind" comes from Deuteronomy 6:5 and is also mentioned in Deuteronomy 30:6. "Love they neighbour as thyself" comes from Leviticus 19:18. Jesus Christ is teaching the greatest commandments in Auraytha.

Malachi 3:6 - "I the Lord do not change."

Hebrews 13:8 - "Jesus is the same yesterday and today and forever."

Jesus Christ tells in John 10:30 (NIV) - "I and Father are one."

Since Jesus and Father are one, Jesus Christ can never deny the teachings of his Father.

John 14:15 (NIV) - "If you love me, keep my commands."

So in order to obey the greatest commandment - "Thou shalt love the Lord thy God with all thy heart, and with all thy soul, and with all thy mind", we must keep the commandments of Both Father God (Old Testament) and the Son (New Testament).

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Deuteronomy 22:5 English Standard Version “A woman shall not wear a man’s garment, nor shall a man put on a woman’s cloak, for whoever does these things is an abomination to the LORD your God.

But MIND you, this is from the Law. we are no longer under the law so congratulations. These laws were given to Jewish people and not to Gentiles. So we don't need to follow it.

If a woman was asked to come for an interview for a business job and she was asked to dress smart. Will you say "God said don't wear trousers for it is detestable to him"? Once are imputing law into people's lives which causes them to stumble.

Is it a sin to cross dress? No because if you are in Jesus Christ, you will live by Faith. As Habakkuk said "the just shall live by faith" not the just shall live by law.

"For the time will come when they will not endure sound doctrine; but after their own lusts shall they heap unto themselves teachers, having itching ears; And they shall turn away their ears from the truth, and shall be turned unto fables. 2 Timothy 4:3-4 This has nothing to do with The Law, which is a covenant, the first writer is correct, a man dressing as a woman is an ABOMINATION. It is not a New Testament/Old Testament Covenant issue.

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Deuteronomy 22:5. The woman shall not wear that which pertaineth unto a man, neither shall a man put on a woman's garment: for all that do so are abomination unto the LORD thy God.

I Corinthians 6:9. Know ye not that the unrighteous shall not inherit the kingdom of God? Be not deceived: neither fornicators, nor idolaters, nor adulterers, nor effeminate, nor abusers of themselves with mankind,

The Greek words there are malachoi for effeminate and arsenokoitae for “abusers of themselves with mankind”. A better translation of arsenokoitae would be sodomite; a moral literal one would be “man bedder”.

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protected by Affable Geek Nov 18 '14 at 15:41

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