Since the Prom is coming up soon, I thought I would dedicate this article to what the Bible says about such events as this and other social dances. I know that the Prom is a very popular event to attend for high school seniors, however, a Christian teen and any other young Christian must first think about what is most important to God, rather than what is important to the world.
I am glad to say that I did not attend the Prom or any other social dance growing up, even though I had opportunity to do so. I was asked twice by a young man who was also a senior in high school,to attend the Prom with him, but I declined the invitation both times. I did not want to hurt my influence in front of others by causing them to think that I danced at an event such as this. I am also glad that my husband did not attend the Prom as well. We can teach our children from our example about not attending the Prom, and we do not intend on allowing our children to attend these events.
The main issue with the Prom and other social dances is just that, dancing. Dancing in and of itself is not wrong, as long as it is done in the privacy of your own home between those who are married. The issue of dancing in public, especially dancing between members of the opposite sex, however, is that activities such as this may tempt a person to lust. Dancing usually involves either making sensuous movements or touching of some sort between males and females, and these actions could cause lustful thoughts. I John 2:16 speaks against lust by saying: “For all that is in the world, the lust of the flesh, and the lust of the eyes, and the pride of life, is not of the Father, but is of the world.” Even dancing on your own in front of others can cause others to have lustful thoughts toward you. Even though we cannot control what others do or think, we, as Christians, should never be a stumbling block to others, and we must show ourselves to be in the world but not of the world in front of others. This is shown in Galatians 5:16-21; "This I say then, Walk in the Spirit, and ye shall not fulfil the lust of the flesh.For the flesh lusteth against the Spirit, and the Spirit against the flesh: and these are contrary the one to the other: so that ye cannot do the things that ye would. But if ye be led of the Spirit, ye are not under the law. Now the works of the flesh are manifest, which are these; Adultery, fornication, uncleanness, lasciviousness, Idolatry, witchcraft, hatred, variance, emulations, wrath, strife, seditions, heresies, Envyings, murders, drunkenness, revellings, and such like: of the which I tell you before, as I have also told you in time past, that they which do such things shall not inherit the kingdom of God." "Lasciviousness" involves indecent physical movements and unchaste handling of males and females. Clearly, the prom fits under the definition of the word lasciviousness. Knowing the meaning of lasciviousness and knowing for a fact that such occurs at the prom, I am very thankful that there are congregations and families that determine to have prom-alternative trips.
We should never participate in activities that can cause ourselves or others to sin. I know that there are many at the prom who dance without the intent of inciting lust in themselves or others, but there is always a risk that this may happen.
Another issue with the Prom and other social dances is immodesty. Usually on the night of the Prom, I see many pictures on Facebook of teens in their prom attire. Many of the dresses that the ladies wear are either too low or too short. What is modest is exemplified by how God clothed Adam and Eve after they realized they were naked. Genesis 3:21 says, “Unto Adam also and to his wife did the LORD God make coats of skins, and clothed them.” He clothed them in coats of skins that covered them from their shoulders to their knees, according to the Hebrew word for “coat” as used here, which means “tunic.” A tunic in the Bible was a garment that reached from the shoulders to at least the knees. Since this is the ONLY example given in the Bible of how God wants us to dress, then wearing anything less today would be immodest. The Bible speaks against exposing our chest, loins, and thighs, and showing any of these body parts is considered “naked” in the Bible. We would be considered naked if we exposed any of these parts while either standing or sitting. Since the Prom promotes lustful actions such as dancing, it is no wonder that there is such a prevalence of young ladies who are also dressing in a lustful manner. It all seems to tie together.
What about younger Christians who are too young for the Prom? Should they be able to attend school formals, and dances in middle school and high school? Would these events teach them that it is acceptable to dance in public and dress immodestly? Do these events teach young Christians that it is acceptable to attend the Prom? A dance in middle school or high school is the same as a Prom. Anywhere that dancing is taking place can cause a Christian young person to place a stumbling block before themselves or before others. Therefore it is best that parents teach their children that being a good influence to others is more important than following the crowd. I John 2:15 says, “Love not the world, neither the things [that are] in the world. If any man love the world, the love of the Father is not in him.”
What if a Christian attends a social dance but doesn’t dress immodestly or dance? It is good that a Christian young person chooses to dress modestly and chooses not to dance at such an event. However, attending an event that involves dancing can harm a Christian’s influence in front of others. We must always guard our influence in front of others, because it is our job as Christians to lead others to Christ. I Timothy 4:12 says, “Let no man despise thy youth; but be thou an example of the believers, in word, in conversation, in charity, in spirit, in faith, in purity.” How can we lead others to Christ if we do not show ourselves to be Christ-like? Would Jesus go to the Prom or any other social dance? If He did, He would speak against the activities taking place. It would be acceptable if a Christian youth went to the Prom or any other social dance to teach against these activities, but how many young Christians do this?
Our goal should be achieving the gift of Heaven, and not being pleasing to men. Matthew 5:13 says, “Ye are the salt of the earth: but if the salt have lost his savour, wherewith shall it be salted? it is thenceforth good for nothing, but to be cast out, and to be trodden under foot of men.”