I’ve been blessed with the opportunity to teach Genesis to the middle-schoolers at my church this year, and one of the things that’s struck me about the first few chapters is the centrality of family to God’s design. The fact that God made us male and female is so important that it’s mentioned in the same breath as being made in His image. The very first commands God gives to mankind are “Be fruitful and multiply” (in other words, get married, have sex, and have children) and then “subdue the earth and have dominion over its inhabitants” (in other words, make this world into a home for you and your children.)
But it doesn’t stop there, for in the second chapter, God repeats this story with an even tighter focus on Adam and Eve. The only thing in creation that wasn’t good is the prospect of man being alone. So God allows Adam to briefly experience that absence before solving it using Adam’s own flesh and blood. When God presents Eve to him, Adam immediately recognizes both the similarities and the differences. He also immediately grasps the implications: fathers & mothers, wives & husbands, children & marriage. It was all out in the open through their nakedness, of which they were not ashamed.
Even in the next chapter when sin enters the picture, that centrality of family does not change. It’s fascinating how God’s response to the Fall actually doubles down on His design rather than abrogating it. He condemns the serpent by promising a Savior to crush his head, but he does so specifically through mankind continuing to be fruitful and to multiply. He tells Eve that she’s still going to have babies (but now it’s going to hurt) and that her husband is still going to rule over her (even though she now desires to control him). He tells Adam that he’s still going to subdue the earth for his family, but now the earth is going to fight against him and his blessed work will become toil that ends in death. From beginning to end, man lives within the same divine ordinances as before the Fall–he’s just not going to be able to enjoy them the same way.
In light of that reality, it’s only natural that Satan would still rage against the family. So he works to destroy marriages, sow contempt for children, and devise demonic replacements for God’s institution. What amazed me recently, however, is how the devil’s thralls have reached the point in degeneracy where they actually realize all of this. They no longer pursue their master’s agenda despite the blessedness of family but because of it.
“Toward Dismantling Family Privilege and White Supremacy in Family Science” was a webinar that made the rounds on social media earlier this year. It contends:
Family Science has long studied non-traditional families. The discipline still struggles with family inequality, though, in how it privileges certain types of families over others. Like White privilege, family privilege is an unacknowledged and unearned benefit instantiated in U.S. laws, policies, and practices and bestowed upon traditional or “standard” nuclear families to the disadvantage of non-traditional configured family systems (e.g., sole-parent families, unmarried committed partners rearing children together, grandparents raising grandchildren). Family privilege is defined as the benefits, often invisible and unacknowledged, that one receives by belonging to family systems long upheld in society as superior to all others. It serves to advantage certain family forms over others and is typically bestowed upon White, traditional nuclear families.
Family privilege is a structural mechanism “hidden” within our White supremacist society that creates systemic barriers to equal opportunity and justice for all families. In this webinar, attendees will examine, recognize, and learn how to dismantle the manifestations of family privilege in our social systems by using an intersectional framework developed by critical feminist and race scholars.
If we look past the buzzwords meant to invoke fear in weak-minded minions of the Spirit of the Age, what exactly is their position here? Well, they confess that natural families confer far more advantages on their members than our various unnatural substitutes for family.
After all, inequality between natural and unnatural families just means that natural families are far more successful. Indeed, that tendency is so powerful that they go so far as to describe it as a “barrier” to unnatural families’ ability to keep up. What’s more, society is so permeated by this natural advantage that its benefits are taken entirely for granted by virtually everyone. And this superiority of the natural family is so universally recognized that it has been enshrined in all of our customs, laws, and institutions so that as many as possible can benefit from it. In a way, they’re even correct that these advantages are unearned. After all, we didn’t design the family; God did. It’s one of the many gracious gifts He has poured out on mankind in creation.
This is one of those cases in which I can look at the words of wicked critical theorists and proclaim, “Yes; you are basically correct.” But where the children of God see a blessing for which we give thanks to God, Satan’s minions are compelled to see a bane for which they must curse God all the more. Try to imagine being so thoroughly evil that you can look at an institution that has been so consistently successfully in elevating everyone involved in it… and then consciously decide that you need to tear it down precisely because of how it benefits people.
It’s time for American Christians to start leaning into privilege language rather than getting defensive about it. Privilege is a good thing. Every time you teach a man to fish rather than simply giving him one, you are creating privilege because he can now feed himself for a lifetime. We need more privilege–not less.
Privilege is even an obligation of many of our vocations. As a parent, it’s your job to privilege your kids–to give them every blessing that will serve them well throughout their lives and contribute to their future success. As a grandparent, you must prepare to bequeathe that heritage so that you can pass your own privilege on to a posterity who is ready to care for it. As a member of a tribe or nation, it’s your job to love the neighbors God has given you by contributing to your national heritage–preserving and increasing the privilege your people have received.
And if the devil’s peons want to start tying your privilege to your race, who cares? All they’re doing is complimenting your ancestors because they think your forbearers have done a better job than everyone else’s. The correct response to accusations of white privilege is the same as for any awkward compliment from a fool: Simply say “thanks” before moving on and leaving them to their foolishness. You don’t have to share their racial obsession or their beliefs. After all, you know family is a gift to all tribes and nations even though you appreciate your own the most. And if another nation has availed themselves less of that gift than yours, it’s usually none of your business.
So praise God for the natural family and the structures of privilege it has produced. Thank Him for the specific family and privileges he has given to you. Work hard to pass that heritage of privilege on to your own children. And if that means you have to reject the demonic programming which tells you to be ashamed of God’s blessings, then so much the better. We are no longer beholden to the prince of this world and his rules & regulations, for we have been set free by Christ to live as sons of his Kingdom.
As usual, excellent post. Bookmarking this one.
Thank you, sir!