Episode 57 – Modest is Hottest

Kainos Project
Kainos Project
Episode 57 - Modest is Hottest

The topic of dressing modesty is an evergreen issue in Evangelicalism. But with the release of a particularly bad music video on the topic, it’s in the headlines once more.

Matthew West’s new music video entitled “Modest is Hottest,” which debuted at the SBC 2021 Annual Meeting, has been the subject of ridicule and criticism, so much so that West has removed the song from his YouTube account and all other streaming channels. Some have come to his defense, while others celebrate the fact that this song is no longer out in the world.

This week on the podcast, we dive into the idea of modesty culture and how it relates to purity culture, how it has shaped our view of women within the Church, the significance of a song like “Modest is Hottest” debuting at a meeting where sexual abuse allegations were one of the main points of conversation, and what biblical modesty might look like in a 21st century world.


It's disturbing that the whole reason for being modest is presented as making it so that boys will be more interested in you. Click To TweetThe line 'I'm just kidding, no I'm not' was a very meta line in the Modest is Hottest song. Click To TweetThere's a lot of vitriol on both sides of the modesty conversation. And it's been brewing for a while, particularly as the status quo has grown increasingly tenuous. Click To TweetAll Christians would agree that we shouldn't be dressing immodestly. But we tend to have wildly different definitions of what exactly constitutes modesty. Click To TweetI was brought up to believe that modesty was a central part of my role of being a woman. Click To TweetModesty culture actually has the effect of over-sexualizing you while also shaming your sexuality. Click To TweetModesty culture brings a weird attention to the bodies of teenagers at a time in life where you feel uncomfortable and awkward about your body already. Click To TweetWhen I was a 15 year old, I wasn't looking to wear what would get me sexual attention. I was just wanted to be trendy. And being told that could make someone else to sin sexually puts your mind in a completely different place. Click To TweetWe emphasize sexual sin in the church and make it out as like the ultimate sin to fall into. Click To TweetWe want to be perceived in a certain godly light, but that doesn't always translate into the ways we actually care for others. Click To TweetWhen you think about the context of sexual abuse allegations, a 'modest is hottest' joke is the worst joke you could make at that moment. Click To TweetWhen it comes to modesty, men should be held responsible for their own impulses, but women should be mindful. I just don't think that means wearing a turtleneck. Click To TweetWe need to find ways to show women and tell women that they are valuable and should be treated as such because they are fellow image bearers. Click To TweetA woman's modesty in the bible isn't about not making her brother stumble. It's about finding her worth in who they are in Jesus, rather than in her physical beauty. Click To TweetWe always need to bear in mind the inherent dignity of men and women. And where we have failed to uphold that dignity by objectifying women, we need to repent. Click To Tweet

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