Crossdressing is a sin

It must be, it says it right there in Deuteronomy 22:5

A woman must not wear men’s clothing, nor a man wear women’s clothing, for the LORD your God detests anyone who does this.

That seems pretty clear to me. Not only is it a sin, but a detestable sin. At least that’s what my pastor was kind enough to remind me when I went to him for advice. He was quick to point out that while God welcomed all children to His flock – even the hurt and broken – He did not intend for them to stay that way. I asked him for resources and support to help me overcome this and he pointed me to Randall’s website.

Now as you know I’ve previously written about being a Christian crossdresser, and I firmly believe that God can do more than we could ever hope for or imagine – He even has the power to cure crossdressing (if you think about it for a second, this is probably quite easy compared with healing the sick and raising the dead).

Crossdresser Heaven - Find Your Tribe

But if crossdressing were such a detestable sin, surely the Bible would be overflowing with admonishments against crossdressing. At least a mention in the New Testament, or a reaffirmation by another prophet in the Old Testament. What we have though is Deuteronomy 22:5. Which happens to be only six verses away from Deuteronomy 22:11

Do not wear clothes of wool and linen woven together

And Deuteronomy 22:12

Make tassels on the four corners of the cloak you wear

Now I’m sure that every good Bible believing Christian checks to ensure their clothes aren’t made from different materials, and is diligent about making tassels for their coats. Surely being just six verses away would make these commandments as important and worthy of fervor? Not so it seems. The inconvenient laws from the Old Testament ‘no longer apply to modern society’. It seems somewhat hypocritical to me that Christians would use this verse to damn the transgendered as sinners and heretics. Joanna does this line of reasoning full justice when she discusses Crossdressing and Christianity

Randall constructs a compelling argument that crossdressing is not Christian. It is worth reading, he begins:

While searching for an answer to the question of cross-dressing being a sin, I realized that I was looking for a black and white literal answer in the Word that was not there. My reasoning was that if the prohibition was not there, it was OK to cross-dress. Later, I realized that was the same attitude the Pharisees had in Jesus’ day – they would strain at observing all of the “must dos,” but they would create all kinds of ways to follow the law literally while breaking it in spirit. It occurred to me that on this issue, I had become a legalist! (more)

Clearly crossdressing is not a sin, any more than eating pork or wearing clothes made of different fabrics. Given this we should should not be willing to accept the condemnation of others, especially not Christians. As Paul says in Romans 2:1

You, therefore, have no excuse, you who pass judgement on someone else, for whatever point you judge the other, you are condemning yourself, because you who pass judgement do the same things.

And in rejecting the condemnation of others, we should realize that Jesus Christ does not condemn us.

For God did not send his Son into the world to condemn the world, but to save the world through him. Whoever believes in him is not condemned, but whoever does not believe stands condemned already because he has not believed in the name of God’s one and only Son. – John 3:17-18

So we have accepted that crossdressing is not a sin, but what of the other lines of reasoning Randall puts forth? I’ll discuss those in more detail in a future post. In ending this post I want to again urge you.

Don’t let anyone else tell you that crossdressing is ‘right’ any more than you let anyone tell you that crossdressing is a sin. Your true purpose in life is known to God, and revealed to you through your relationship with Him. He may want to cure you, change your heart, or use you to bring comfort and blessing to others. Be open to His plan for your life.

Hugs and Blessings


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Dedicated to creating a safe, supportive and welcoming environment for everyone in the transgender community.

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  1. Diane Lewis 10 years ago

    You might want to look at

    Sandra Stewart has a fairly good look at this issue and more in great detail.

    I certainly think it worth the effort.


  2. Vanessa Law 9 years ago

    Thanks for your detailed explanation Lynnea. If I understand your conclusion correctly, by accepting an inappropriate occupation (i.e. living as who we are) we debase ourselves. So this verse is more about being true to yourself and who God made you as, than a condemnation of the transgendered?

  3. Zosimus the Heathen 9 years ago

    Ah, good old Deut. 22:5. Even when I first encountered it (as a callow 13 year-old combing the Old Testament for lurid tales of sex and violence), I was rather skeptical about it, not only because it was to be found in a part of the Bible chock full of bizarre laws (seemingly half of which were to be enforced with the threat of stoning*), but because it seemed silly for God to concern him/her/itself with something so trivial as what people wore (the way I saw it, it reduced him/her/it to the level of someone from the high school “in crowd”, who condemned others for not dressing in a suitably trendy fashion). Besides, who decides what qualifies as men’s clothing and what qualifies as women’s clothing? That’s right, OTHER HUMAN BEINGS! So whose authority do we ultimately take on which attire is “gender-appropriate” and therefore “divinely approved” – the fashion fascists? God help us! Or should we make it more democratic and leave it up to a periodic vote? And what happens when fashions start to change significantly, and one sex begins adopting the attire of the other en masse (as, for example, when women began to wear trousers in ever-increasing numbers)? Are the brave pioneers of these changes fated to be damned as “abominations”, while those timid souls who only follow the fashion once it’s become safely entrenched get off scot free? And if so, what of those in the middle? What is to be their fate?

    Which sort of leads me to another reason I’m cynical about Deut. 22:5’s applicability to the modern world. Why is it that all but the most extreme Christian fundamentalists only seem to apply it to male crossdressers these days? I mean, it’s pretty clear that it applies equally to both sexes: it’s not as though it says, “A man must not wear women’s clothing, for verily the Lord Your God doth bring up the contents of his stomach at the very thought of such a vile thing; but a woman shall have permission to don the apparel of the man, for it has come to the Lord Your God’s attention that women wearing men’s clothes is quite the trendy thing nowadays (and actually sort of hot too), and there is nothing that doth please the Lord Your God more than seeing people follow the latest trends.” (Maybe it’s in the same version of the Bible in which God commanded the ancient Israelites to keep their homes well-stocked with handguns, assault rifles, hand grenades and rocket launchers; and enjoined his later followers to imitate their example for all time to come.) Indeed, if the sad fate of Joan of Arc is any indication, society once took both parts of this prohibition very seriously – apparently, the thing that ultimately sent the aforementioned Frenchwoman to the stake was her abominable “crime” of wearing men’s attire.

    Funny you should bring up the OT law about tassels. If memory serves me correctly, this command is concluded with the stern injunction that God’s chosen people are to follow it “for all time to come” (or words to that effect), which leads me to wonder which part of “all time to come” millions of believers, both Christian and Jewish, over the centuries have failed to understand! Ironically, I actually have a piece of tasselled clothing myself: a black leather jacket to which I had long leather fringes attached. It’s become something of a trademark for me, and has led to me acquiring some unusual nicknames over the years, such as Tass and David Tasselhoff!

    *In retrospect, the OT “capital crime” that bemuses me the most is that of disobedience to one’s parents. I doubt the penalty for that one would have been applied very stringently, even back in OT times. After all, how long is any society likely to last if it puts all its disobedient children to death?

    • Vanessa Law 9 years ago

      @Zosimus: Your comment made me smile. It’s too true how well meaning Christians can get so focused on certain verses and interpretations and easily forget the verse right after it. Or even the second sentence of the verse they’re so passionate about. I think that Jesus correctly chastised those in His time who were doing this. Using the law to take people further away from God rather than closer to Him.

  4. lisaroberts 8 years ago

    Brilliant Post! Thank You!

  5. Marcye(Marty) 8 years ago

    I am a m/f c….age 65…….and do it pretty openly for the last 3yrs. and am ok with it. In refrence to you Dt. comment…. I was tol by a christen lady friend who supports me stated that that book of the bible was dated back in the time when the Romans where in full swing of wine drinking and orgies.(not enough woomen to go around). Hmmmm…..
    I have another christian lady friend of mine for years that supports me, but got on the tangent of it being wrong….I asked her if God made mistakes?..Her answer was no…..Ok then, if I am a creation of God than how can I be wrong? And I believe in God, or a greater divine being. I am native american by two tribes, and am leaning toward their old ways.
    I my mind if I am happy doing what am doing . That is all that matters.
    “Judge not less ye be judge”.
    Thank you, Marcye

  6. johnny 8 years ago

    hell man get a life and live it as long as you harm no one ,the priests and vicars etc are 99% perverts who molest kids ,so why take their advice

  7. Vicki 8 years ago

    dueteronomy 22:5 seems to be where many hang their hat as the final verse that says crossdressing is a sin. And yet it never occurs to anyone that back in that day womens clothes were probably close to what we would call a berka today. Not lingerie or high heels or flouncy skirts and satin blouses. So how can that verse be the end all and be-all for the narrow-minded bible thumpers?

    • georgette 8 years ago

      Dear Vanessa,
      above web site is Jade Catherine excellent research about cross dressing and God. Deut 22.5 refers to neighboring community that praticed CD as attempt to convert fromGod and drive others from God.
      Also that portion of Bible has to do with Jewish rules and per NT we are Gentiles and not held to Jewish law. Jesus’s new Conventant replaced the old. And Roman’s 14 Paul talks about eating the meat is not a sin but eating such that it harms others away from God.

  8. Jon 8 years ago

    It makes me sick that anyone would give a shit about this.

  9. Racquel Lynn 7 years ago

    That scripture is a bit varied from what I am used to seeing, but then, I am seeing more and more many varying versions of many scriptures.
    I have not seen that passage reading "God detests this"
    What I have always seen is "It is a shame for a woman to wear the clothing of a man or a man to wear the clothing of a woman."

    • Racquel Lynn 7 years ago

      I have never read that it was a sin or that God detests crossdressing.
      I occasionally visit my brothers church and the pastor (and much of the congregation) are very homophobic and transphobic, but one day the pastor, during his sermon, mentioned that someone had come to him freaking out about a man in the church wearing make-up ( I am assuming that was me since I have permanent eyeliner and lipstick)
      He said he asked them what the big deal was. They quoted that verse and said that it was a sin and that the guy in make up was sinning in the church, so he said he had to point out to them that the scripture said "it is a SHAME, but nowhere does it say it is a SIN"
      I was amazed that such a phobic minister was actually (to some degree) standing up for my side ( possibly for me specifically)
      Not that I agree that it is a shame either

  10. Racquel Lynn 7 years ago

    I believe God has a plan for me and it is not wrong for me to crossdress or to have surgery to become a woman. I believe that Gods plan for me is to become a female, but that he first needed me to experience some things as a male that I would not have been able to as a female and could therefore carry those experiences with me as I transition into becoming a woman.
    I believe that God does indeed know what he is doing, he knew what he was doing when he created me as a male, but that his plan for me is to become a female during the course of my life here on Earth.

  11. Charlie 7 years ago

    Hi vanessa
    I was in couseling for years with my wife over crossdressing. The couseler was a christian and was a firm beliver that it was against the bible and god to crossdress. They pretty much tried to convince me that what I was doing was wrong. I ended up playing along hidding my true passion and clothes. I think that we are who we are and no one can change us or make us conform to the way they want us to be. Heres some food for thought what about men wearing kilts? I love this site and it gives me courage and deternination. Thank you so much Charlie

  12. Leslee 7 years ago

    Have we ever noticed we never will have a consenious of opinion about anything in this world. Quit belaboring things and live your own life the way you would like, within reason of course. Divirsity makes life interesting.

  13. Stephanie 7 years ago

    I know I'm a little late in responding to this thread! My 2 cents are as follow! a) I believe in a supreme being, I leave it up to you what to call him/her. b) I'm not ditching Christianity, but if you back track 5000 years ago, in what language was the first testatment? How many times was it translated by HANDS, because they wasn't photocopiers until the late 1800s. c) Religion itself always ensures that the books that they publish strenghen their belief, but are they the right beliefs?

    In most religion, "GOD" gives youthe freedom of choice, well mine is to crossdress and if I'll be damned for it then so be it! Be yourself and not what everybody else wants you to be!

    Love your life instead of hating it!!! Kisses

  14. Awesomestuff41690 7 years ago

    Romans 12:19
    “Never take your own revenge, beloved, but leave room for the wrath of God, for it is written, “VENGEANCE IS MINE, I WILL REPAY,” says the Lord.”

    This Is probably my favorite verse in the bible, yet it seems so many fail to see what I take as the deeper meaning. At the end of the day is it not God who determines what is right and wrong, and for whom that is so?

    I am a crossd resser, I have struggled with this issue for as long as I can remember (I am almost 22) and I have just recently begun exploring this side of my self. I have offered up this issue to Jesus time and time again and my conscience is clear. I think that maybe for some feelings such as this may weigh heavy on their conscience, and perhaps for them it is not what God desires of them, and perhaps for others it is not something God has chosen to be a burdon. Everyone of us has been made unique, and I find it hard to believe that he would ask everyone of us to be the exact same. For example, I know many people who will never touch a glass of alcohol again in their life, God has spoken to them and they know that for whatever reason it is not the right thing for them, on the other hand I am responsibly enjoying a beer as we speak.

    When Jesus was sent down to die as an ultimate sacrifice, he took with him all the old rules, transcending the guides of the Old Testament. Is it too much to believe that a being so powerful to defeat death itself, to break the chains of hell, and cleanse himself of the sin of the entire earth is to weak to guide each and everyone of us on our own unique path!? I would urge all of you who are in doubt to go some place quiet and just try to commune with the Lord, I know from personal experience that He is normally very clear about what you should and should not be doing, the question is if you will listen.

  15. James 7 years ago

    I have a friend who’s husband cross dresses. We’re quite sure the origin is not necessarily sexual as in lust – it seems for years he was neglected as a child since his mom wanted a daughter. She was very depressed post partum and took it out on him unwittingly. These relationship issues resulted in him wanting to be like his sisters and it seems it started a long time ago.

    The problem in their situation is that she can’t reconcile the whole thing in her mind. The marriage bed has become a confusing place for her – when he shaves his legs and chest, when he wants to wear female pj’s and underwear, she just cannot see past that and feels like she is in bed with another woman and it makes her despise him or want to reject him.

    In this situation it’s a case of… If it causes someone else to sin, don’t do it. They have been for counselling and he knows or rather has heard how it affects her and how vulnerable she feels when he is doing it. He has promised to stop but he has done this so many times and just gone back to it. He starts by hiding it… buying stuff and hiding them… then slowly but surely he progresses to shaving again etc. and its impossible to hide from his wife… what he doesn’t realise is that it now causes her to sin since she desperately wants someone to talk to and has found a companion in me… whats wrong with that? Well, we are old friends and I had a serious romantic crush on her when I was much younger and it’s difficult to not go there. We have found ourselves getting into deeper and deeper water and although we haven’t slept together, we have probably just not had the opportunity. We both have wonderful families… children… I love my wife but we have an issue that affects our ‘love life’… so I have found a listening ear in this friend of mine…

    Long story short… if you know something causes someone else to sin you have to ask yourself whether it’s worth it. I mean, how hard can it be, as a man, to be told you can no longer wear clothing made for women.

    And here is the crux of my argument….
    If you think it’s no big deal (cross dressing)… if you subscribe to the argument that there is nothing more to it than the way fabric is put together, the materials used etc… i.e. if you think it’s purely metaphysical, then surely you will have no trouble wearing clothing that is accepted by society as being appropriate for your sex.
    What I am saying is that there is alot more to it than purely clothing… don’t fool yourself. Whatever your reason for doing it… DO consider the people around you and how it affects them and DONT be afraid to face your inner fears / doubts / whatever causes it. Consider that there may be something in your life that needs to be fixed, pursue it prayerfully and don’t give up.

    All of this is said by someone who is not living a perfect life, who needs to spend more time praying about my circumstances and realises that I need help as much as anyone else out there… the thing is to seek that help and not just rationalise everything to your advantage. I hope this helps someone out there.

  16. Roperinn 7 years ago

    i am a crossdresser and like some help come out to all the poeple i know in the house i live all the time as a woman but wand go out i do not

  17. Allie 7 years ago

    The above is a clip from a television series called the ‘West Wing’. It basically is a logical argument following all of the above, and it kinda owns Pharisee-like people today. =3

  18. Allie 7 years ago

    The above is a clip from a television series called the ‘West Wing’. It basically is a logical argument following all of the above, and it kinda owns Pharisee-like people today. =3

  19. Frank 6 years ago


    I am a Christian who enjoys wearing women’s clothing in the house and very rarely outdoors, but I do not wear a wig or makeup. I don’t find where the NT calls CDing a sin, but what I do find, and in many verses, is that lying is a sin. When a man dresses as a woman, wears makeup and a wig, and changes his name IN ORDER TO make others believe that he is a woman, he is lying. This is a sin. When a CDer dresses to entice lust, this is a sin.

    I don’t believe God cares whether the garment I’m wearing has two leg openings or just one; or whether I’m wearing a flower-printed shirt or a Harley-Davidson shirt. But what he does care about is clearly defined in the Bible’s New Testament; Jesus did away with the OT laws, which is good for us, but we are under grace and grace still has rules to follow. Lying is deceiving others by intentionally presenting false information. Pretending to be a female when you’re a male falls into this category.

  20. angela 6 years ago

    Cross dressing is not a sin because cross dressing was for a pagan pratice to prayer to gods so that why it’s only to prayer to gods that are to christ or our lord.

  21. Thorin25 6 years ago

    I am a pastor, and a past crossdresser, and I think crossdressing is sinful and harmful for a number of reasons. You can read some of my thoughts at these links. I don’t want to clog up your site with humungous comments 🙂 I also have written extensively on Deuteronomy 22:5. I have a really long post on it but if you have the patience I think you’ll find it helpful. Thanks for letting me comment!

  22. Alex 5 years ago

    I love wearing womens clothing, from tight pants to mini skirts. i do it because it feels right to me, and i love the way it feels.. mens clothing are baggy, and loose..I believe in God and i Pray to him. i dont know if gods mad at me but i pray not..

  23. thorin25 3 years ago

    For a New Testament Passage against crossdressing, see 1 Corinthians 11.

    • Stefanie 11 months ago

      That is a very loose interpretation of the scripture
      A huge reach

  24. Klaus 3 years ago

    What if the reason you wear the undergarments is just due to the personal opinion that they’re physically comfortable? I wear them (only on occasion) because they’re easy to breathe in. I also find them very light and easy for maneuvering. Is this a sin? It’s only the lower undergarments?

  25. kristine Merkwürdigliebe 2 years ago

    I have a cousin who has known he was gay since being a little boy. And he was raised in a very strict Missionary Christian home which even forbade having a television! He said his struggle with reconciling his Christian belief was relieved with the discovery of this verse:

    Matthew 19:12 King James Version (KJV)
    12 For there are some eunuchs, which were so born from their mother’s womb: and there are some eunuchs, which were made eunuchs of men: and there be eunuchs, which have made themselves eunuchs for the kingdom of heaven’s sake. He that is able to receive it, let him receive it.

    An eunuch was a boy who was castrated to become a servant who wouldn’t be distracted from his service due to sexual desire. But it could be interpreted as someone who doesn’t want or have have sex with women. Whether this desire comes from within or from our genes doesn’t matter. Because for a Christian we are saved through grace – not the works of our hands.

  26. Victoria 2 years ago

    Well then since I have been dressing since age 5 yes that is correct I guess I shall burn above all others! Evil laugh rofl!

    Yes and also and unlike many other catty CD/TG types i’m a very nice,patient and compassionate human being so I would count that if I were a God much more than the so called sin.

    When I girl mode I am 100 times nicer than in male and I’m already nice in Male mode so my rant is done,
    thanks much for reading girls xxxx

  27. Dani Love 2 years ago

    I have always beleived that my feminine side is a gift from God

  28. pwnapple 7 months ago

    It’s interesting, because the Torah quote is a mistranslation. The literal translation is “don’t make it such that (lit. there won’t be; masculine, singular, meaning it could be referring to the object, or the people it’s being addressed to as a whole) a tool of a man (lit. man-utensil) upon a woman. Don’t wear (masculine, plural, referring to a group of addressed men as individuals) a dress/skirt of a woman (lit. a woman-robe). Because abhorrent to the God of gods such/all these doings” It’s later discussed by the Sages to determine what utensil women can’t wear, and they end up banning all three types: both certain religious instruments (those fringes on four-cornered garments … tzitzis, and Tefillin), worn weapons such as swords, as well as all garments usually worn by men.

    While Christians may have dispensed with a lot of things (I guess calling it the old Testament means it doesn’t really apply anymore, maybe?), observant Jews will wear tzitzis (fringes) and check their clothes for shatnez (wool/linen mixture). So, surely, the observant Jew who’s trying to come to grips with their beliefs as relate to their understanding of this part of their lives, can’t use the argument you put forth: they can’t say that the law no longer applies in a modern world.

    So far, what I’ve been telling myself is this: In Judaism, technically, while it’s a transgression, it doesn’t quite carry the same weight as an actual sin. The Torah itself doesn’t have a specific punishment (like stoning), nor does it specify that a sin offering would be brought to the Temple.

  29. Interesting article, as usual Vanessa! In my worldly travels, I saw many different male nationalities who could be construed as cross dressers. Hawaii, Samoa, China, Asia, Greece, Macedonia, Africa and so on. Not as Ceremonial attire either. Make-up….well don’t get me started on that one…….war paint, make-up…what is the difference????

    In this day and age……….all lives matter, not just black or African, or Middle Eastern, gay, lesbian, transsexual, cross dresser or whatever.
    Show me some-one who says……I am not a bigot or racist and I will show you a LIAR.
    I believe in a supreme power or force……….call him God, Mohammed, Budda or whatever. His/its “guidelines” were written down to satisfy whomever was ruling at that time. New Ring Master… rules to suit them. Anyone who has watched all other creatures live…..knows that they too commit all the known dos and don’ts……The “Rules” were not given to them. It is natural in most cases. The “Guideline, Torah,Koran, Chakrahs all boil down to 10 Commandments not the 10 Suggestions. Organized religion leaders have changed it all around to suit themselves, in my opinion. Anyway Vanessa….I hope you let my rant fly as I wish everyone would take a good look at themselves and tell me why “others” must be scorned.

    Lady Veronica

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