The Godless Goddess Woman On Full Display

In doing these things, it’s funny how certain things tend to drop into your lap right at the right time. After talking about a sterling example of the supplicating beta worm that’s the worthless worshipper of woman, we have one that comes around of the goddess woman.

I explained the dynamic that traditionalists have placed upon men, women, and marriage last time, so I’ll refer you there for the basic idea. As pointed out earlier, society including the churches have been deifying women and bidding men to submit to their wishes. This extends not to just marriage but all society.

Now to move to our current example out of many many women, we have 43-year old actress Charlize Theron. We are given the message as men that she’s “shockingly available” and “been single for 10 years”, and that men need to “grow a pair and step up”. Now this is language we’re used to hearing from women and their enablers, as there’s been legions of women crying this very thing. But it’s fascinating to see a man-up rant from a Hollyweird movie star.

The Goddess Proclaims Truth
The graphic to the left explains the general operation of feminism. This view of women as goddesses, created from the advent of Mary worship, kicks off things. Since we have female supremacy in operation, the average woman has absolute female moral authority.  This means any pronouncement that she makes automatically becomes true and right.  If she’s hyper-obese, she better be the best looking woman out there, for instance.  And if your her husband, you better provide the right answer back to her.  If you don’t, then you just aren’t providing proper devotion that she deserves.

The base expectation out of traditional feminism is that women deserve husbands as their birthright.  I’ve made the reverse statement in a supposedly Christian environment to howls and the blog owner consoling the poor wimminz.   They want what they want no matter how unrealistic it might be. After all, we’re reminded that 80% of men are below average according to women. She’s got to have the exact man she wants and the princess fantasy to go along with it. This effect is worse in churches and has been called the Evangelical American Princess (or EAP) by several bloggers. These women just aren’t finding men, so the howls of “Where have all the good men gone?” After all, men are supposed to fulfill every whim and desire of the women around them!

The Worthless Male Responds
So we have Mizz Theron, this entitled princess, howling like many other women about not finding her perfect man that fits all of her 463 requirements. For 10 years, even! And then bidding the men that are supposed to fall all over her and worship her. But it’s not happening! Maybe it’d be useful to look at the back of her baseball card:

  • Single mom of 2 with her first partner.
  • Later dated Sean Penn for a while.
  • Ardent abortion advocate
  • Ardent supporter of PETA
  • Ardent advocate of same-sex marriage
  • “not having much respect for marriage in the first place”

I could keep going on, but as our article states:

Unfortunately, for her, the only men in her social circle are probably pro-choice left-wing activists, given her history of abortion advocacy, which spans all the way back to the late 1990s.

So rightfully, any man that Mizz Theron would be attracted would likely reject some or all of this. So all that are left are the simpering soyboys for her to choose legitimately. But wait a minute! Men aren’t worth enough to have a choice! They need to be falling all over her trying to gain her approval. Don’t they know this is a Glorious Woman?!? This is what all “good men” should be doing to any woman that dare might consider letting him into Her Glorious Presence!

Remember too, what happens to men that complain like this. They are often reminded that they don’t deserve to have wives, or even standards for women and should take what they get. Remember that a man would (as many men already have!) get shouted down as a pathetic excuse and a waste of flesh if he made a similar pronouncement to Mizz Theron.

The Biggest Teenager In The House
We keep looking at Mizz Theron, as we do most women who fit the feminist bill. The traditional responsibility and burden of the man is to serve the woman and give her everything she wants without any responsibility falling on her head. But how do we convince men of that? The key is to feign weakness so that women may be thought of as children. Women can’t be responsible, so men must undertake this burden. This is the source of a lot of the diversion of blame you see out there in the churches and society. That adultery wasn’t her fault, that pathetic excuse of a husband pushed her into it! That divorce wasn’t her doing, it’s all she could do to get away from her terrible husband that wouldn’t “make her feel loved”!

This leads us to Mizz Theron. Like many women, the fact they are single is always a poor situation out of her control that the men put on her. It’s not that she’s a terrible relationship prospect that chose a life to put herself into that place by acquiring the feminist merit badges, it’s just that the men just won’t man up and marry her or even have a relationship with her. After all, she didn’t do anything that warrants that kind of treatment. She just can’t!

The Prototypical Entitled Woman
As we see, Mizz Theron is simply a prototype of what we see every day in the dating market as men. Many of us do realize that we have a choice in the women we marry or date. Simply put, Charlize Theron, as most women, are simply not worth it. Not necessarily because of the looks, but because of the person. We don’t hear figures such as Albert Mohler or numerous others tell women that they need to shape up. However, we get bellows to man-up or grow-up and marry these women and protests about video games or a number of other non-issues. A woman can never be blamed for anything she does, especially when it comes to relationships.

As for Mizz Theron, why don’t you step up, Seth Rogen? Then there’s always Glenn Beck and Chad Prather and his boys out there that could man up and marry this woman. Oh wait…thought so.

Women Choose Their Mates

One thing I’ve endeavored to point out throughout this blog is that due to traditional feminism, the general pattern for relationships is that men bring offerings while women approve of them. This puts women in a headship position, countermanding Scripture.

This extends to the very beginnings of relationships. As I originally pointed out in Some Problems in Christian Dating, women select the men they are interested in and initiate contact via flirting. This is confused into the thought that the man is the head by approaching and offering whatever it may be that she desires. “How To Make His Wildest Dreams Come True” by Graham Masterson points this out.

Flirting is much more than a frivolous bit of fun. Some experimental psychologists have come to believe that it explains the whole nature of human sexual relationships. In the past, social studies tended to conclude that men control the preliminaries of courtship, by approaching a woman and “opening negotiations” by asking her to dance, or if she’s interested in a date, or by trying out one of a thousand well-worn pickup lines.

But new studies have shown that most of the time it is the woman who selects the man, and that she then sends out literally hundreds of signals encouraging him to approach her. Psychologists call this “nonverbal solicitation behavior,” but we can call it flirting. (1)

The first paragraph states the Traditional Feminist position, while the latter points more to the truth. I want you to be sure to see this:

“most of the time it is the woman who selects the man”

Masterson continues on this line of thought:

What particularly interested me about female flirtation is that it shows clearly just how much a woman is in control of a man’s sexual responses — right from the moment they meet. (2)

It’s always interesting to see how an inversion of these truths is always sold by traditional feminism in culture and that so many buy into them. Male mother need is always a force to consider, ever since society was reordered by women with this dynamic. When you have men debasing themselves in bring their oblations to their goddesses in hope that they find acceptance and approval, no one should be surprised that God’s given pattern for marriage has been inverted.

(1) “How To Make His Wildest Dreams Come True” by Graham Masterson p29.
(2) ibid p30-31.

Old Fashioned Grace

One of the things in the backdrop to the 50 Shades of Grey movie release was a movie that was pitched as a direct alternative to this movie, and in fact released on the same day. That movie was Old Fashioned.

With life and human failings come the tendency to prejudice and negativity. In re-reading the comments to that thread afterwards I noted a lot of it. Some of that negativity came from the typical expectation, some of it from how the movie was pitched. Needless to say, I was pleasantly surprised by the quality of this movie, compared to my impressions from the trailer and the review. Where the Kendricks are inept when it comes to film making, the writers and producers of this one are much more accomplished.

(spoilers afoot from here)

While functioning in the backdrop of “dating” or a “romance”, Old Fashioned functions as an examination of the individuals involved in this journey, more than anything to do with marriage or romance. This said, the Christian themes of this movie have nothing to do with marriage, courtship, or dating.

The primary themes are ones of Law and Grace.

We are introduced to a man, Clay, who is working in an antique shop, named “Old Fashioned”. Occasionally, he repairs old furniture. Amber, the free spirit, comes into town. She has run out of gas and out of money, so she decides to stay and rent an apartment. This turns out to be the upper loft of the antique shop, where she meets and takes an interest in Clay.

Pretty quickly, we find Clay is very closed off to interacting with Amber, preferring to keeping her in a separate room. However, he is not closed off to sharing his “theories on dating” with anyone who will listen, explaining him doing this. Notably, these rules turn out to be an accurate view of the courtship movement, including the lack of recognition that borders can exist in dating. We also meet his friends, Brad or Lucky Chucky who is a radio jockey (think Leykis clone), and David, who is “living in sin” with a woman that he knocked up, who are annoyed pretty consistently by Clay’s “theories”.

As the movie progresses, we find out about the pasts of both Clay and Amber as the barriers begin to fall between them. We have these things revealed to us as they and the townspeople interact, most notably by Amber breaking things in the apartment so she can get time to interact with Clay. Clay has a certain past that he’s repented of when “Jesus found him”, which we find later involves being a PUA who produced Girls Gone Wild type audios with his radio jockey friend.

Amber has a past of chasing after “the warm fuzzies”, leading her to deal with multiple men, and running away when things get “messy” and her gas money jar gets full. This is shown to us by her broken hand, which we learn was done by the last man she was with over her decision to wear some nail polish.

Much of the focus of the movie is on Clay and this world he finds himself in which is hostile to his beliefs, not much affirming his views. We find out in the talk between Amber and her friends, and directly through Clay’s decision surrounding his friends. However, we find Amber falling in love with Clay’s rules and structure before she does him, finding a man that knows what he believes and upholds it to be different than what she previously knew through their “not date” dates into their first real date at a marriage counselor (again courtship). Eventually the ice thaws enough between them that they take a trip to his house along with his Aunt. This leads to a trip to church, a first for her (“spiritual but not religious”) and a long absence for him (“others not perfect so he didn’t fit in”). This leads her to find a testimony of love that she hasn’t gotten before, and allows her to let Jesus find her outside of Clay.

The crisis point of the film involves issues of temptation to faith. One is Clay standing up for his faith where he rejects being in David’s bachelor party when he finds a stripper has been invited. This leads him to plead to David over it, David agreeing, and the party being broken up. But not before everyone else involved has words for him, and the stripper’s bodyguard comes to blows with him. Then his old girlfriend, Kelly, shows up at his door. Amber’s involves Clay continuing to not be open with her (she has extended an incredible amount of grace towards him on this point in the movie), coupled with his unwillingness to confess his past when she confessed hers, at the prompting of the marriage counseling question guide they got, leading her to watch one of Clay’s old videos.  She then goes out and her friends help her to pick up Brad which leads her back to his motel room.

This leads to a happy ending, where both resist the temptation to follow through.  But in looking for each other to talk, they get mistaken notions of what the other did.  Clay’s aunt’s talk at the end, coupled with Amber ridding herself of her “memory board” and the “gas money jar” drives home what was going on fully: Clay was unwilling to forgive himself for his past and allow grace to get into his life from God’s forgiveness, while Amber was running from her past instead of dealing with it.  We get one final scene of real “romance” at the end, which functions as a proof that both were listening to each other all along.

As I noted above, this movie was done by film makers much more able than the Kendricks and it showed all the way through. That a film maker powerfully got across the concepts of law and grace without using The Sledgehammer of Plot(tm), was refreshing. The choices of symbolism, lighting, and the expression of the actors expressed the emotions and gravity of the situation and many of the Scriptures that could have been referenced. The ones that were quoted were non-intrusive in the dialogue.

Outside of Amber being the initiator so much, which will be objectionable to some, it provides a wonderful example in Amber to those women who have been trained to not be active of IOIs as the actress playing her uses them constantly.

Furthermore, I enjoyed the balanced and (generally) correct view of law and grace that was presented. It could be said that Clay was overly stuck in a “law” view where he didn’t accept God’s grace, while Amber was representative of the “cheap grace” common to Churchianity today. The clear depiction of both requiring a journey in life requiring effort and cost to attain grace, along with the repentance shown in both parties by “letting the old things pass away” (2 Cor 5:17) was refreshing.  In other words, both Clay and Amber were treated equally in terms of their ability to sin, both were presented as truly broken people, both fessed up to their own mistakes, and both had the choice on whether to accept the other or not.

The fact that Clay was presented as a Christian man with true convictions that he never wavered on despite the opposition, who gained respect from others (notably Amber and David), was refreshing as well.

The confusion between romance and love exists within this movie, but outside of a few things I could nit-pick on, as a Christian message, I found this movie to have a very affirming and positive story line, with a distinct minimum of true feminist thought in it. I know nothing of the other movies from this studio, but as for this one, it was a definite step up from the Kendrick’s fare. While not anything approaching a “classic”, it is definitely worth watching if you are looking for such fare.

They Only Want One Thing!

Previous Parts Of The Discussion: Part 1Part 2Part 3Part 4

As mentioned last time, I have the intent to go through some of the anti-courtship literature that’s been produced. The fact that it has been produced is interesting in itself in light of a lot of the attitudes that exist within the modern churches. Given the path of one of those pieces of literature, an observation of what exactly has happened with the mating process will be interesting.

Controlling Sexual Interest
There’s an interesting observation that this blog author brings forth. He mentions reading the book by Dr. Henry Cloud, and produces a quote that indicates the presence of control that is quite interesting to compare with Joshua Harris, himself, as an example.

In a chapter titled ” Unleash Your Libido or Real It In” he talks about at least one situation where he has counseled people that were involved in a church where dating is frowned upon . He found that with this person “this ’spiritual’ teaching was covering the fact that he was hiding from sexual problems, insecurities, and lots of weirdness”

He then states his opinion on the affects of a non dating policy:

In the name of purity, chastity, and good morals, singles have been desexualized. The are often repressed beyond normal decency, and as a result they are in a “presexual” stage of development.– what psychologists refer to as “latency/” In other words, out of a fear of sex, they have regressed to preadolescents, and they are feeling and acting like twelve-year-olds instead of adults who have gone through adolescence and figured all of that out.

He additionally states later in the chapter:

Keeping one’s sexuality in an immature and unintegrated state makes it neither holy nor ready for real relationship. … It keeps them out of what God designed as natural attraction, and it keeps them sexually disintegrated from the rest of their personhood.

He also goes on to state that he is not advocating “sexually acting out.” He was advocating sexual ownership as part of who you are. He also quotes Col 2:23.

The author also mentions “Boundaries in Dating” by Drs Cloud and Townsend, which seems to be a direct response to Joshua Harris’ I Kissed Dating Goodbye. The interesting thing to observe is how fervently this has been adopted without any consideration or forethought – again a good mark that a great many Christian parents are ruled by fear in raising their children.

Dating Systems
The other interesting piece of literature I wanted to highlight is one by Thomas Umstattd Jr. called “Why Courtship is Fundamentally Flawed”, which was interesting enough to note by itself, as it was parlayed into a book called Courtship in Crisis. While he is on point for most part, the most interesting part is to use it as a piece to bounce off of how we got here and observe where the mistakes lie.

That there are two of those “bad groups that only want one thing in dating” (PUAs and courters), is ingrained enough that has capitalized on this in one of their ads:

Umstattd talks about “dating” and “going steady” in terms of his grandmother. This is notably a mistake as his grandmother’s way was only about 20 years old when she was dating. As is suggesting that any method of dating is either “Biblical” or “right” as it is always a construct of both time and culture, given events going on within the society, economic conditions, and other factors. Biblically, there’s a whole cornucopia of ways that men and women have met up (Umstattd points this out).

Forming marriage is another story, as I’ve pointed out previously. As both Umstattd and myself point out:

The courtship movement eliminated dating and replaced it with nothing.

Or, put another way, they replaced dating with engagement. The only tangible difference between an engagement and a courtship is the ring and the date.

If anything, the way a dating system should be evaluated is if it functions well in bringing members of the opposite sex together, and it produces candidate pairings for marriage. Without a doubt, courtship has failed to hit this mark. As Umstattd points out:

Young people are expected to jump from interacting with each other in groups straight into “pseudo-engagement”. This is a jump very few are prepared to make. The result is that a commitment to courtship is often a commitment to lifelong singleness.

If you wanted to eliminate and inhibit marriage, courtship is a great way to go. If you want something that works, go elsewhere. Unfortunately, given the state of what marriage is, what that dating has been turned into, and the misandric conditions of all of it, nothing is really functional anymore.

The History of Mating Since the 1950’s
The weakness Umstadtt exhibits in his work is primarily a lack of focus in defining the way things have gone. I decided to start from the 1950’s because Umstattd did. As well, most of the tradcon feminists I’ve encountered like to harken back to the 1950’s as some dream state utopia. Umstattd describes this sufficiently, in terms of dating, going steady, engagement, marriage. This also describes it in good detail.

The problem began when the modern feminists decided to lower the bar of the sexual market the feminists have created. They posited that marriage is an oppressive institution for women (marriage has by and far always has been an instrument of female domination). Naturally, anything that led to that state would be rejected, which would be the idea of “exclusivity”. Hence the idea of the hookup culture was born. As defined:

The term “hookup culture” — often alcohol-fueled sexual encounters with no strings attached from either side — has also emerged from the buzz. For some millennials — anyone born between 1982 and 1994, though some stretch that to 2000 — having several intimate relationships, open relationships and casual sex are all viable options, albeit personal choices for the individual to make.

As written here:

“Dating” has taken on a different meaning for today’s generation of students. And for many, it means too much commitment for comfort.

“Dating is way too serious. Dating is like being married,” Stepp said. “Your generation doesn’t have a good word for between hooking up and being married.”

Now, young women cannot only show their faces on Friday night sans dates, but they are also less likely to be considering men as marriage prospects. With improved gender equality, many women in college are preparing for self-sustaining careers and are more likely to be scoping out Mr. Man-for-the-moment rather than Mr. Marriage material.

The hookup culture has its pros and cons. Among the pros: “It’s allowing women to go out and have a good time,” Stepp said. “The girl doesn’t have to sit at home at night waiting for a boy to call.”

As the modern feminists normalized their “hookup culture” (notably where the PUA rose from), the idea of “going steady” disappeared and became equated with dating. Effectively, dating turned into “hanging out” and “hooking up”, due to the pressure placed upon “dating” in the previous generation:

Today’s romantic relationships are often perplexing at best. As my therapy clients often struggle with understanding what to make of different relationships, I too find myself struggling beside them trying to make sense of their stories and concerns. The television storyline today looks much different. Boy meets girl (or boy). They text, message, or “talk” (which is apparently some sort of code for not quite in a relationship, but not out of the realm of possibilities either). They may or may not “hook-up” and the definition of this may vary depending on region and other sociocultural factors (for more info on hook-up culture and friends with benefits, see previous article here). Dating may occur, but will more likely be referred to as “hanging out,” although it can be challenging to tell, as it may literally mean just hanging out, but can also mean more. Also important to note is that being “asked out” on a “dinner date” is exceedingly rare among contemporary millennials.

How two individuals may find themselves in an exclusive dating relationship with one another is often the great mystery. Actually, I jest here, but not entirely. The more I ask couples how they came to find themselves in a relationship, the answers vary greatly from “it just kind of happened,” to matters of convenience. As Generation Y is often touted to be that with the highly fragile self-esteem, “fail” is one of their greatest four-letter words. It makes sense then that putting themselves out there to ask someone out can seem terrifying. The harmless equivalent of “hanging out” however, not so much. Often young women will decide to take matters in their own hands and turn the tables of the waiting game altogether. And yet, young men and women alike still seem to find themselves lost in inaction.

A state of confusion gets generated of how things get there, and the boundaries fall between meeting, relating, and relating. It seems only natural that those who created “courting” have confused “hanging out and hooking up” with “dating” and further compounded the confusion by removing this step entirely, which has been documented above, and in the other parts, along with actively desexualizing their children. Unfortunately, this has only served to confuse matters much more, and increase the control that parents exert over their children.

In conclusion, I present a diagram, which will be useful to the visual learners here:

(2015-12-17) Mating Evolution

Overall, dating is a cultural construct more than anything Biblically-inspired, though anything of this nature should honor God in *all* things. The premium in “fixing” dating comes out in the question of whether it works or not. Unfortunately, fear and other devices have conspired in making people adopt their own ways to the death without looking at whether things are working (How many church marriages do you know? I’m aware of exactly 2 in the entire time this blog has been live), and working out for the best interest of everyone involved.

Christian Homeschooling: Raising Children or Controlling Them?

Hush now, baby, baby, don’t you cry
Mama’s gonna check out all your girlfriends for you
Mama won’t let anyone dirty get through
Pink Floyd, Mother

Last time, courtship as it practically takes hold from doctrine was discussed.

While discussion of these things has centered on Joshua Harris’ I Kissed Dating Goodbye, the idea of courtship and the thinking behind it exists in many other places (groups like ATI, Vision Forum and SGM; anything connected to teachers like John Piper, Mark Driscoll, and Matt Chandler; or in Christian homeschool literature – Harris, Pride, McDonald, Lindvall, the Ludys, the Botkins) the linkage between the homeschooling movement (specifically Christian homeschooling) is undeniable given that this is Joshua Harris’ background for his whole life. To wit:

Courtship is very much active among Christian homeschoolers. Harris’ book is in high demand. I am on several homeschool email lists and when the topic of courtship comes up, ikdg is always recommended. When I say the topic of courtship is discussed, it doesn’t mean the homeschoolers are discussing whether courtship is right or wrong, good or bad. They are only discussing how to present this to their kids, what books are good, how to go about it, etc. It is virtually “always” considered the only thing to do. Dating is never an option among almost all Christian homeschoolers.

This post will investigate the sins of the parents and church leaders that precipitated “the courtship problem”.

Practical Evaluation and Results
The motivations behind such homeschooling (as with any legalism, motivations are always important to examine) seems to turn into one of control, where information is filtered tremendously, where everything about the world is fastidiously avoided and vilified. In other words, the parents can not offer anything better to their children than other options, but do it anyway out of abject fear. Consequently, everything is evaluated through the lens of this fear and paranoia, sacrificing honest evaluation of what is best for the child along with honest evaluation of what is being taught them and done for them. This desire of parents to control every aspect of their children leads into courtship:

Honestly, I believe that at our SG church, anyway, courtship was more about parents who wanted to control every aspect of their children’s lives than it was about actual purity. Purity may have been one of these parents’ well-intentioned goals for their kids, but purity can be accomplished in other ways, like equipping young adults to MAKE GOOD DECISIONS, rather than setting up a bunch of stringent rules for their kids to follow…and a weird artificial process for finding a mate.

Rather than equipping and preparing their children to deal with the world by developing and instilling self-control (Galatians 5:22-24) in them, they are sheltered and controlled. Instead of fostering an independent adult, dependence is fostered. This comes out in the general naivete most homeschoolers possess, along with the general lack of social skills that are gained by having to deal with others outside the watchful eyes of their family. It should be a question of concern given that the typical homeschool environments arguably enabled the SGM sex scandals, especially the concealment of them. This lack of social skills undeniably extends to matters of male-female interaction for marriage prospects:

When singles don’t have these social skills it makes them more dependent and easily controlled by their parents. Without having the opportunity to develop the interacting skills needed to meet a mate, they can become dependent on their parents and others in finding a mate. I value the opinions and input of others on finding a mate but seriously question if parents should be the ones deciding who you should marry.

The Sin of Fear

Hush now, baby, baby, don’t you cry
Mama’s gonna make all of your nightmares come true
Mama’s gonna put all of her fears into you
Mama’s gonna keep you right here under her wing
She won’t let you fly but she might let you sing
Mama’s gonna keep baby cosy and warm
Pink Floyd, Mother

With the motivation of homeschooling and courtship clear, that in many it represents a living by sight instead of by faith (2 Cor 5:7), it becomes interesting to look at Scripture. At this point, the idea of fearing the Lord or a wife fearing her husband should be dispelled, as those things are Scripture. Fear here is anxiety or worry. Fear exists in the absence of faith in the Lord (Psalm 78:17-23; Revelation 21:8). When fear happens, lack of trust in the Lord happens. Lack of faith brings judgment.

Behold, he smote the rock, that the waters gushed out, and the streams overflowed; can he give bread also? can he provide flesh for his people? Therefore the Lord heard this, and was wroth: so a fire was kindled against Jacob, and anger also came up against Israel; Because they believed not in God, and trusted not in his salvation: (Psalm 78:20-22)

But the fearful, and unbelieving, and the abominable, and murderers, and whoremongers, and sorcerers, and idolaters, and all liars, shall have their part in the lake which burneth with fire and brimstone: which is the second death. (Revelation 21:8)

Fear leads from a number of sources, but notably fear leads into other sins. The typical responses to fear are to control the situation (domination) or complete resignation (desolation). David with Bathsheba (2 Samuel 11-12) is a notable example of the first, Elijah (1 Kings 19) a notable example of the second.

What Is the Proper Response?
Here for a parent, it is notable how the Father responds to us. Guide yes, discipline yes, advise yes, control no. Be mindful that it is “Train up a child in the way he should go” (Proverbs 22:6 – the Hebrew is interesting in this one. Clarke translates it “Initiate the child at the opening (the mouth) of his path.”), not “Train up a child in the way you want him to go”. Your children don’t belong to you and their hearts don’t belong to you. You are not their Lord and God.

I find it interesting that Scripture can be applied to speak to the creation of marriage (an ADULT decision) in this way, using the term busybody or meddler (1 Timothy 5:13; 1 Peter 4:15), or speaking evil and judging (James 4:11; Romans 14:13). Courtship makes a potential marriage relationship about the parents and not about the two involved, and in this way quite qualifies as meddling. As for such matters, it is notable in a number of states that there are anti-meddling laws with respect to marriage (Alienation of Affection). Also (for those that have interest in such matters), the Catholic church will have issue with such marriages formed via courtship.

Be careful for nothing; but in every thing by prayer and supplication with thanksgiving let your requests be made known unto God. And the peace of God, which passeth all understanding, shall keep your hearts and minds through Christ Jesus. (Philippians 4:6-7)

Bring your fears to God. Don’t take them out on your children. One or two more posts from here. Next will look at some anti-courtship literature. . .

Death to CourtshipA Case Thrown Out Of CourtshipGrift Your HeartsCourtship: The Background and Negative OutcomesCourtship: Extending Parents Protection Beyond Homeschooling?

Courtship: Rotten Stinking Fruit

Previously, the moral attitudes expressed in Joshua Harris’ book I Kissed Dating Goodbye were discussed. Some of the practices stemming from such things, along with the effects will be discussed here. Most who have followed this blog and others will know where this heads. Effectively, as traditional feminism goes, the process of going to the altar for marriage is always to prepare a man to accept female domination (she breaks it off if it does not occur). Namely, the system that stems from this is called courtship, as in knights of the court. Harris’ version could be considered as such a thing on steroids, which unfortunately is what is meant these days when “court” is referred to by others.

(2015-08-17) I-Kissed-Dating-Goodbye

Dating Is A Dirty Word
One constant you will find in the courtship movement, stemming from these teachings, is a vilification of dating, and Harris is no exception. Contrasting his chapter on why dating is defective with the rest of the book, Harris neglects to address any of the obvious deficiencies, which is especially telling since courtship exacerbates many of his “dating” problems. Courtship is perfect and is God’s plan. Dating is not. Courtship is not for fun. Dating is about personal gratification and an end in itself. It brings all kinds of temptation to sin. No distinction between casual dating and dating to determine suitability (long-term dating) is even made. If you date, you’re bad, evil, and sinful. It is mindful to remember that this kind of blindness in the minds of “Christian” leaders and parents has contributed to this mess.

Enter the FRIEND ZONE!
To begin in the system laid out by Harris, contact with the opposite sex should generate friendship. As Harris notes as a problem with dating, it skips the “friendship” stage (1). Remember, the goal is to maintain emotional purity and not create situations where intimacy can happen. Harris states that intimacy and friendship are confused, so the difference must be known (2). The answer presented to this is that interaction may only occur in groups. (3) Harris gives an example where a young woman called and cancelled a gathering with a man because the others cancelled and they would be by themselves. Further examples of this practice:

(regarding two church members, a single man and a single woman)
Back to the story: The man was driving down a local roadway when he saw the woman on the side of the road, her car broken down and she was in very obvious need of outside help. She saw the man, recognized him, he recognized her, and to her shock he drove right by. When the man was confronted later about leaving his sister in Christ on the side of the road to fend for herself, he responded by saying that he was “fleeing the appearance of evil,” was torn up inside about leaving her, but said he feared verbal reprisal from church leadership over it.

The deliberate plan is to create and legislate a friend zone which all men must enter and observe, at pain of the fear of God. Now given the nature of traditional feminism, you get a legion of male beta orbiters as a result, out to try and get noticed by the women. All they can do is hover around, be friendly when spoken to, but try not to be seen as seeking intimacy by being forward in seeking a woman’s attention and time (and possessing self-respect), and hoping a woman will notice them enough to take interest. Any more brings the wrath of the parents and the church down.

This falls into the standard feminist dogma that the man should supplicate to the woman and if he works hard enough and serves her just right, she’ll accept him. Note the difficulty is increased by women with these same teachings in their minds running from any chance of this within their church groups. Of course, outside is always another story. Interestingly enough, the group-only system (no one-on-one communication) exacerbates the problem Harris notes with dating, as how well can you get to know a person in this way to be able to know if you have interest in anything further?

This passivity is also taught directly (4) in terms of the story of Isaac and Rebekah (Genesis 24), which is where a lot of the “God will bring the perfect man or woman into your life at the right time” teaching goes (Ruth is also used). This is also a common thread of “True Love Waits” movement. It is notable that with God, faith is always rewarded in action, but since action creates temptation for sin in this system, action is always a sin.

Let Me Be Your Supplicating Beta Tool
Now if the man in this situation happens to get a woman to notice him, our beta orbiter gets to graduate to a supplicating beta. Let us remember that commitment in the minds of these people is marriage, so if the man is to pursue this woman, he must be ready to marry her right away with limited to no communication, and limited to no knowledge of this woman, incumbent on her approval of course. Any failure of the venture to proceed directly to marriage (courtship periods must be short) becomes “defrauding” the woman.

A courtship venture begins by the man asking the woman’s father/parents for his approval to “court” his daughter. (5) It may be many months of the man measuring up to the woman’s family’s expectations (“Dance Little Piggy, show you’d do anything for her!) before they get to formally court. When it comes time to formally court, it’s done under the watchful eye of her parents and others, who can break it off at any time. Notably if this sounds a bit like arranged marriage, it does, and interesting enough, many in the courtship movement speak approvingly of such things.

I’m also reminded of shows like the Bachelor and Bachelorette, in remembering one of Harris’ reasons dating is defective: That it creates an artificial environment for evaluating another person’s character (6). Courtship does it in a worse way, as it much more of an environment where “the best foot is always put forward” and people can be fake in the name of appearances, hiding themselves from their prospective spouses.

Friend or Wife, Nothing In Between
I’ll conclude this post with a quote, summarizing it all:

The courtship system places far too much heaviness on male-female interactions because it creates an artificial, either/or mentality. Either a guy must treat a girl “like a sister,” or else he is sinning, or else he enters into a courtship with her. And a courtship isn’t merely “dating,” as Josh Harris has made clear in both of his books. Courtship is “interaction with a purpose, which is the intent of exploring the potential for marriage in a relationship.” Courtship as I saw it play out at my former church also involved a great deal of parental supervision and direction.

If that ain’t heavy, then she’s your sister! 🙂

It just seems like if there were some middle ground – a place where guys could acknowledge that they find women attractive or alluring, and even spend time with them that wasn’t automatically geared toward marriage OR viewed as “casual and therefore sinfully lustful” – then maybe this wouldn’t be such a huge “thing.”

When faced with a hands-off or marry her NOW environment with the force of both parental discipline and church discipline, no wonder most men are just sitting on the sidelines in the church environment. Until next time, when the topic will be the motivations behind all of this from the parents (specifically centering on the homeschool movement).

(1) I Kissed Dating Goodbye by Joshua Harris p 34 (2) ibid p 128. (3) ibid p 94. (4) ibid p167. (5) ibid p215. (6) ibid p41.

Here’s Why Christian Mating Is So Messed Up.

As discussed last time, the doctrine represented within I Kissed Dating Goodbye and the popularity of that book. While much of the results of the doctrine have already been addressed in numerous posts here, it is useful to address it in a more formal way. It’s always good to note that practice always begins with moral doctrine, and this post will address that.

(2015-08-17) I-Kissed-Dating-Goodbye

Lowering the Bar
Much of the whole issue brought up in the entire book is typified in what Harris presents in the first chapter. He begins the first chapter with the story of a marriage ceremony. But it takes an interesting turn:

But as the minister began to lead Anna and David through their vows, the unthinkable happened. A girl stood up in the middle of the congregation, walked quietly to the altar, and took David’s other hand. Another girl approached and stood next to the first, followed by another. Soon, a chain of six girls stood by him as he repeated his vows to Anna. (1)

Harris then goes on to describe the source of this scenario.

Anna told me about her dream in a letter. “When I awoke, I felt so betrayed,” she wrote. “But then I was struck with this sickening thought: How many men could line up next to me on my wedding day? How many times have I given my heart away in short-term relationships? Will I have anything left to give my husband? (2)

Note the bar is lowered from sexual purity (Hebrews 13:4; 1 Corinthians 6:18) in dealing with the opposite sex to an emotional one. In other words, it is taught in Christian circles (over the last 2-3 generations now) that if any emotional attachment is generated, then it becomes a breach of the sanctity of marriage.

Emotional Purity
Harris couches this in terms of the selfish pursuit of short-term romance and calls it “sinning against one another”. (3) While it makes sense from a certain point, practicality negates it. Much of what Harris writes is in terms of maintaining purity and blamelessness before God in terms of opposite-sex interaction. He goes on to define this purity by the idea of seeking commitment before intimacy (4), going on to say that intimacy is the reward of commitment (5) and that intimacy “costs” commitment (6). In this sense, he goes on to describe this purpose to be marriage. (4) In other words, commitment is marriage, and commitment is required before any emotional attachment or interest can take hold.

Regular readers of this blog will be reminded that this is exactly how pornography is treated within marriages in the church.

Ye have heard that it was said by them of old time, Thou shalt not commit adultery: But I say unto you, That whosoever looketh on a woman to lust after her hath committed adultery with her already in his heart. (Matthew 5:27-28)

Using this Scripture, marriage breaking adultery in these circles is reduced to an emotional feeling of lust towards a woman. If the wife even thinks the husband is looking at another woman, it becomes grounds for her to break up the marriage.

Retroactive Marriage
Harris applies this to the seeking of a mate, creating a retroactive state of marriage. In other words, you may be committing adultery with someone else’s wife and against yours, if you hit on the wrong woman. In effect, much of the attitude of the EAP with overly high standards who are told that God has the perfect man for them out there (Harris also echoes high standards – 7), and the marriage with Jesus.

Since emotional purity is considered paramount in Harris’ paradigm, the idea of “guarding one’s heart” is brought up. This comes in the form of not only maintaining emotional purity, but watching out for others in the same way (8). As one might be able to figure out, it is a bit different than the Scriptural meaning (Proverbs 4:23; Matthew 15:17-20). This is done by appropriating examples of physical intimacy and writing emotional intimacy over them (9). While much of what is indicated is appropriate, such as avoiding situations where sin is possible (9), and that big sins take little steps (10) by using the example of David and his sin with Bathsheba, the conflation of thought with sin becomes a problem when it is coupled with the paradigm of emotional intimacy.

This is especially true in looking at Harris’ material. While he points out that physical intimacy can easily be “mistaken” for love (11) and that David’s problem was that he “lusted” Bathsheba, the conflation of emotional and physical confuses matters:

Next, the relationship often steamrolls towards intimacy. Because dating doesn’t require commitment, the two people involved allow the needs and passions of the moment to take center stage. The couple doesn’t look at each other as possible life partners or weigh the responsibilities of marriage. Instead, they focus on the demands of the present. And with that mindset, the couple’s physical relationship can easily become the focus. (12)

The mere fact of being attracted to a member of the opposite sex becomes “mistaking lust for love”, which makes being attracted to a member of the opposite sex a sin in the name of guarding one’s heart. Given this expectation outlined by Harris, since attraction can lead to infatuation, which is displacing God as the focus of one’s affection (idolatry), avoiding attraction becomes incumbent. (13)

Harris further states that “guarding one’s heart” involves preventing lust. As he writes of lust: “For example, when I as a single man look on a woman who is not my wife (which right now means every woman) and immorally fantasize about her, I am lusting; I am setting my heart on something God has placed off limits.” (14) While the linkage between lusting and coveting is obvious in Scripture (Exodus 20:17; Romans 7:7), the concept of sexual possession gets lost in Harris’ text when bounced against emotional intimacy. Guarding one’s heart against lust becomes eliminating even the possibility of lust.

So in other words, being attracted to the member of the opposite sex that’s not your spouse becomes sinful to act upon. Therefore, in children (2-3 generations now), parents, youth pastors, leaders, and the like drum these kinds of things into their heads continually, enforcing them vigorously as well. Here’s why Christian dating is messed up . . .

Legalism Supporting Traditional Feminism
Much of the problem with looking at Harris’ material is, that like most false teaching, it seems reasonable, and in a certain way is good in isolation, taken in the proper way, evaluated against Scripture. But bounce them against this emotional intimacy error (extra-Biblical), and it then becomes an issue where mating and attraction becomes stifled in the fear of God, even to the point that single men and women fear each other to the point of obvious sin. Take people running with the things written to extremes and you get legalistic requirements to “maintain purity” before God which are far beyond His expectation. It seems obvious given our physical natures and requirements that attraction is not sinful, but a necessity in making marriages happen. Again, for those Christians reading this: Being attracted to a member of the opposite sex is okay. Attraction is not sinful.

Traditional feminism seems to play a part in this as well, which Harris reinforces (15). The fantasy of the damsel in the tower isn’t so pure and preserved if multiple princes leave the Princess there instead of rescue her and give her a “and they lived happily ever after.”

Continuing . . .
The desire of the parents to make the fairy tale come true at all costs, among their other desires, has unfortunately burned the whole thing down for those who have been indoctrinated in it. Given the 2-3 generations, we now have 20, 30, and even 40 year olds paying the price for this. Unfortunately, rather than fixing this and the other problems introduced by the “leadership” regarding dating, their only answer is to issue hateful man-up rants to the men. The next post will investigate Harris’ paradigm in practice, along with the effects of it upon those who are “Christians”.

(1) I Kissed Dating Goodbye by Joshua Harris p 17-18. (2) ibid p 18. (3) ibid p 26. (4) ibid p 23. (5) ibid p32. (6) ibid p77. (7) ibid p135. (8) ibid p97. (9) ibid p19. (10) ibid p88. (11) ibid p35. (12) ibid p36. (13) ibid p141. (14) ibid p143. (15) ibid 214-215.