“David Raped” is a Camel’s Nose

What was David’s great sin with Uriah and Bathsheba? The Bible and the Church say murder and adultery. Radical Lutherans say “not having a preacher.” But it’s once again becoming trendy for feminists to insist that David’s real sin was rape.

Scripturally, of course, there’s no case to be made that David raped Bathsheba. The Bible has no problem describing rape when rape is actually part of the story, as we can see literally one chapter after Nathan rebukes David. Instead, they have to base the allegation on feminist theories about uneven power dynamics. The basic idea is that a woman’s consent must be completely pure to count. It cannot be influenced by any outside pressures, but must essentially be the equivalent of her whim.

It gets pretty absurd applying that kind of reasoning to David. For one thing, it would mean that he was raping all of his wives. He was just as much their king as he was Bathsheba’s and held as much or more power over them. And that means that God explicitly condones rape, for when Nathan is rebuking David, God says “I gave you your master’s house and your master’s wives into your arms.” How much power do you think David’s harem had in the matter? But then, you could go all the way back to Genesis when God literally makes Eve for Adam and find the same thing. And moving into the New Testament, we already know  how it ends up applying to the Mother of God.

So as usual, feminist theory is utterly incompatible with Christianity. But then, as usual, it’s also utterly incompatible with reality. To point out the obvious, there is always a power differential between men and women simply because men are so much stronger. What’s more, that power differential is basically a precondition for female attraction. Most women don’t even want a man who isn’t stronger, wealthier, more authoritative, or more accomplished than her. The whole theory is typical of feminism’s myopic inability to see any factor other than power in their analysis.

So why is there so much pressure to inflict this absurdity on the Church? And conversely, why is it even a big deal if someone teaches that David’s grave sin before God was a somewhat graver sin before God? Well, there is a definite method to this madness.

This action by feminists is a classic example of the Camel’s Nose. Counterfeiting a Biblical foundation for feminist theory creates a very useful “problem” for them to exploit. One might notice that for 2000 years, basically no one important has read the story this way.  The church fathers all have the understanding that this was typical adultery–naturally, since that’s what the Biblical text presents to them and to us.

But once you eisegete faulty feminist assumptions into the text, the only conclusion is that for 2000 years, the Church couldn’t be bothered to notice something as heinous as rape. All those “church fathers” were so divorced from the plight of women that even rape was beneath their concern. This (totally invented) problem requires an obvious solution: we need more women to pose as theologians and leaders to address the unique concerns of our sisters in Christ! And so, from a seemingly minor alteration of an Old Testament story, the cancer of feminism has an opportunity to spread to yet more members.

But we do not need more women leaders in the Church. Frankly, nothing in society needs more female leadership. If God’s clear prohibition on women teaching and having authority over men in the Church were somehow not enough, bare experience is now more than sufficient. Today’s church is plagued by false teachings introduced specifically by “women’s unique perspectives.” No good comes from willingly inflicting Eve’s curse on Christ’s Kingdom.

But we are a weak people. Even when we can see the clear logical progression from A to B, we’ve also been trained by the world not to act on such reasoning. Our indoctrination says that the slippery slope is a fallacy and that correlation provides no insight into causation. So it’s worth addressing one of conservatives’ big temptations to surrender ground on this narrative.

Part of the conservative mentality is a desire to find common ground. That’s not a bad thing in itself, of course. In the right context, it can be quite useful. But while we dress up that impulse as “being winsome” and “building bridges,” the bitter truth is simply that we have to be forced into making a fuss. We prefer the calm of peace and security so that we need not suffer the pains of change. So if there’s any possibility of avoiding a conflict, we’re inclined to take it. That’s not a virtue–it just masquerades as one.

Now, if common ground is something one seeks, then condemning rape should be low-hanging fruit. As far as popular consensus goes, it’s right up there with “Hitler is bad.” So to many conservatives, giving credence to the David-raped-Bathsheba nonsense seems tolerable for the sake of an easy “win.” They have a rare opportunity to virtue-signal how they really do care about women despite what those evil liberals say. Too many are therefore willing to be tolerant of something they know isn’t really true.

Here’s what conservatives need to drive into their skulls: There is no common ground between the Kingdom of Heaven and the Kingdom of Hell. If you think there is, you’re either imagining things or you’re on the wrong side. The Enemy is happy to use our words to mean something completely different and have us embrace them. That’s why a subject like rape that appears to be common ground is in reality a subject of so much controversy.

A Christian mustn’t desire common ground with Satan and his thralls. He must desire his utter defeat and their complete repentance. As you reach out to the lost–including those led astray by feminist false teachers–you do need to listen to them. You do need to try and understand where they’re coming from. But you don’t come from the same place. and shouldn’t pretend otherwise. Conservatives are great at being as innocent as doves; but that only means we have to try extra hard to also be wise as serpents. Satan has an agenda, and his servants pursue it whether they know it or not

So when you encounter the lie that David raped Bathsheba, remember that it is an attack on God’s Word and respond accordingly. You may be tempted to think it’s no big deal, but the very fact that the Enemy pushes it so hard should show you its importance. Don’t give in to the temptation to be lazy and conflict avoidant, and definitely don’t dress it up as something more noble. In this and all such attacks, embrace the pain of standing firm. If you can’t even do that on something “small,” what makes you think you’ll do it on anything bigger?

Posted in Feminism, The Modern Church, Theology | 10 Comments

What Seminary Taught Me About Greatness

Should a woman study at seminary? I’ve seen the question raised quite a bit over the past few months for various reasons. Some of that reason, of course, is the fault of “Christian” feminists who will always try to scrabble their way into a pulpit to cross-dress as a pastor. But what about women who have no designs on the pastoral office and still wish to learn theology? Is seminary a legitimate option?

Unfortunately, most of the commentary I’ve seen on that question has been hot garbage because it was oblivious to a very basic point: “Should a woman study at seminary” is not the same question as “Should a woman learn more about God’s Word.” Learning more about God’s Word is good. Learning more about God’s Word specifically through a formal degree program at a school dedicated to training pastors is not always good. There are a multitude of ways to learn more about God’s Word: the Divine Service, sermons, Sunday school, Bible study, reading great works of theology, engaging in conversations with learned Christians, listening to podcasts, asking your husband at home, and many more. Some are more appropriate than others in different contexts, and only some bear a specific command from God. (Please note that the most offensive entry on the list is one of the specific commands from God.)

Nevertheless, the question piqued my interest because I myself studied at seminary without any intention of becoming a pastor, and I’m eternally grateful for the opportunity. Now, I could write about what a seminary education offers and analyze how useful that is to women given their different callings. (That is how I first began writing this, so maybe I’ll post that another time.) But instead, I decided to address it with a story about why seminary was such a positive experience for me and the most important thing I learned there.

When I enrolled at seminary, I had second career plans. I wanted to leave IT behind and teach philosophy in college from a Christian perspective. Christian philosophy had played a big role in God bringing me back to His Church after I had wandered off during high school and college. I wanted to share that gift with others, and I wanted to do so where it was most needed–those spiritual charnel-houses we call universities.

However, I knew delving deep into philosophy is a very effective way of getting “weird” theologically. So I wanted to do some formal study of sound theology first so that I would have a foundation and anchor when delving into philosophy. One of my church body’s seminaries seemed like the ideal place to begin. Then it would be on to a philosophy program. By the time I finally achieved a tenured position, I would have credentials, position, status, and the tools I needed to perform a great and mighty work on behalf of Jesus Christ.

Step one in my plan went swimmingly. I loved my time at seminary. I studied under some excellent professors, read a lot of great works of theology, and delved deeper into Scriptures than I ever had before. Apologetics and ethics were my big interests, and I encountered inexhaustible wisdom in God’s Word and the Church’s traditions to fuel my engagement with those interests. What I gained at seminary is priceless beyond words.

But I also lost something at seminary; and that loss proved to be even more valuable. Like everyone else born in the past 50 years, I had been raised to despise the idea of having children.  I was taught that pregnancy was an STD to be avoided at all costs. I was taught that education and career came first, and children were an optional add-on for when you’re too old to do anything interesting. I was taught to love mammon–money, big vacations, nice restaurants, leisure, etc.–and knew that children would eat away at my precious mammon. For all these reasons and more, I “knew” that children were a hinderance. And especially as one now intending to be a high-minded intellectual–to be “great”–it was a hinderance I didn’t want and couldn’t afford.

But the more I studied God’s Word and broadened my view beyond the modern world, the more I realized how alien my hatred of family truly was. Alien to God’s word. Even alien to humanity. At seminary, God taught me that my ideas of greatness were horribly wrong.

At the same time, the Lutheran doctrine of vocation helped me to understand where greatness truly lies. I, of course, had already heard Jesus’ teaching that the one who would be greatest of all must be the servant of all. That’s why my big plan was a plan to serve others! But I was operating under the faulty American notion that service is self-chosen. I had been told my whole life that I could be whatever I wanted to be when I grew up, and I believed it. So of course I aimed for the mode of service I found most appealing.

But that’s not what servants do. Servants are given tasks by their master. They have agency, but that agency is within their master’s priorities, not their own. I had made my plans, but what did my Master actually command of me? Radical Lutherans might disdain that question, but every Christian has asked it.  And nobody reading the Lutheran Confessions could avoid finding answers. A faithful student could hardly read Luther’s critiques of monasticism and all of its mighty self-chosen works like vows of celibacy & outwardly pious rituals and not draw the connection to his own choices. I had not been called to celibacy–I was already married–but I had chosen barrenness. The very first thing God ever told humanity to do was to be fruitful and multiply, but I had “bigger” plans than that.

That’s not service. There wasn’t anything wrong with my aspirations per se. But my plan was not a plan for greatness in God’s eyes. My idea of service had more to do with myself than anything else.

The year following graduation–when I was applying to philosophy programs and taking some undergrad classes at a local college–was when God finally hit me with the choice. Biology provides us with hard limitations, and the fertility window is one of those. This was my plan for a second career, and my wife and I were nearing the end of that window. If we wanted children, that was the only time left. But how would I financially support a family? I had a reliable means, but it wasn’t five years of a PhD program followed by however many years it would take me to find a tenure-track position in a glutted field. It was my paused career in IT.

So I put what I had learned at seminary to good use: I abandoned my plan in favor of God’s instructions. I let go of my dream of greatness in favor of God’s and truly serve. And in raising the children God has given me since, my only regret is my stubborn and ignorant delay in getting started. I absolutely love my sons and would not trade them for anything under the sun. The vocation of father has taken a lot of getting used to, but it was never beneath me the way I had been taught. The world gave me the unappealing idea of raising generic, faceless children, but that never matched the reality of raising my children that God gave me. God’s plan was even a greater blessing to me than mine was.

So my time at seminary was not wasted because it irrevocably changed my life for the better. And I do still use my degree–as a teacher & elder at my local church and as a father doing his best to catechize his children. While I may not read or write as much as I once hoped to, I still do both. And fatherhood has shaped my writing in ways that academic study never could have. So God didn’t just leave my preferred kind of work by the wayside.

So to any women considering studying at seminary because you have big dreams of serving God in ways the world esteems, consider first what He has actually asked of you. Family is the clear vocational priority for the vast majority of men, but that is doubly emphasized and doubly obvious in Scripture for women.

God wants you to learn–quietly in all submissiveness. But instead of using that learning to teach men in the church, he wants you to be saved through childbearing. But he does have a teaching role for you: “training younger women to love their husbands, be self-controlled, pure, working at home, kind, and submissive to their own husbands.” He has asked you to help manage your husband’s household with skill and grace. He wants you to teach your children about His Word and raise them in the faith. This is the greatness to which the vast majority of women (and almost certainly you) are called.

Do you truly believe a seminary education is the best way to achieve these far greater works than the ones you have planned for yourself? Or perhaps the myriad of other ways God has given you to sit at His feet and learn His Word are far better suited to your calling. It was only due to stubborn ignorance and worldly influence that I needed seminary to learn that. Why would you need seminary to learn that?

Posted in Family, Feminism, Sanctification, Theology | 3 Comments

Your Earthly Kingdom Matters

“My kingdom is not of this world. If my kingdom were of this world, my servants would have been fighting, that I might not be delivered over to the Jews. But my kingdom is not of this world.”

“My kingdom is not of this world” is a relatively famous quote even by Biblical standards. And like similarly famous quotes such as “judge not lest ye be judged,” and “let he who is without sin cast the first stone” it’s frequently used by non-Christians and false teachers as bludgeons to pacify believers. But whereas the other two examples are wielded against Christian morality in general, “My kingdom is not of this world” is increasingly being wielded against Christian Nationalism.

More and more Christians in America are waking up to the fact that religious neutrality was always a fraud used by modernists to cripple Christian influence in culture and politics. Now that one of their mightiest icons–Roe v. Wade–has finally fallen, they are all the more desperate to prevent American Christians from loving those neighbors progressives would rather murder, vivisect, and molest.

Many Christians I know are both encouraged by and excited about this victory–and by the fact that the ruling left the door open to challenge some of the other worst rulings in American history. So naturally, the anti-Christians had to try and throw water on it. “Woah there, don’t celebrate this victory lest you hurt the feelings of the defeated!” “Stop all the chest-beating! Those tiny lives Christians have saved are worthless unless you implement my entire political program!”

But there is also a renewed effort to back Christians away from fruitful political action in general, and a lot of it centers around the sentiment aroused by misusing “My kingdom is not of this world.” They say that because Christ said this, kingdoms of this world don’t matter. Neither do any actions taken on behalf of their peoples. Who cares if America is conquered by China or ruled by a demented and corrupt traitor? The Kingdom of Heaven will go on regardless, so go ahead an lay down your arms in the face of earthly enemies. Resistance to tyranny would be impious of you. If your level of interest ever rises beyond passing or your determination ever exceeds half-assed, it just shows that you’ve made an idol of politics and must repent!

But Jesus’ words to Pilate were never meant to require a pious nihilism of his faithful. He is not saying that these earthly struggles against evil in our lands are of no significance. And he is certainly not telling us to abandon political vocations which he himself has given us. So what does Jesus mean, then?

When Jesus began his ministry, the devil tempted him by offering him all the kingdoms of the world and their glory–all the authority that Adam had ceded to Satan in the Fall. Christ refused. But it would not have been a temptation at all if the kingdoms of this world were of no concern to Jesus. Rather, he would not reclaim Satan’s kingdom by becoming his vassal; he would instead reclaim it as a conqueror even at the cost of his own life:  casting out the prince of this world and redeeming his subjects for himself.

Christ’s kingdom is the kingdom of heaven. Not being of this world means it was never under the devil’s worldly purview. It’s not a temporal government like Rome or Persia vying against similar powers to control some part of the Earth for a short time. It’s a heavenly government about to reclaim the entire thing from above for all eternity. It does so not by force of arms, but by Christ redeeming the fallen human race with his blood and making us subjects of heaven through the proclamation of this good news. And where the kingdom of heaven conquers, Satan retreats. That’s why sicknesses are healed and demons cast out wherever Christ went. And that’s why we, as his subjects, are more than conquerors through him.

This is a great comfort in the face of earthly defeats–of which we all suffer many. No nation is perfect, and every civilization falls eventually. But none of these failures can truly defeat us because our ultimate victory has already been won. On the contrary, even Satan’s furor cannot help but serve you in the end, for all things work together for good for those who love God.

This comfort is not, however, an excuse to neglect our vocations. For in the same conversation with Pilate, Jesus also tells him that he would have no authority at all if it weren’t given to him from above. In other words, heaven itself is interested enough in earthly politics to grant governing authority. Paul likewise reminds us that the machinations of earthly government are God’s means of avenging those who are wronged commending those who are right. And the Fourth Commandment, which establishes all earthly government by means of the family is the first to come with a promise–that it may be well with us and we may live long in the land. As scandalous as that may sound to some–that living long in this fallen world is a blessing–that is what God has told us. Who are we to believe otherwise?

Scripture never instructs us to be disinterested in or aloof from those responsibilities. On the contrary, God explicitly instructs us to carry them out as though we were serving Christ himself. Because when it comes to our vocations, serving Christ is exactly what we’re doing.

Those who seek to undermine Christian action in the world (or excuse their own negligence) call this devotion to Christ idolatry. They often do the same thing with marriage, the first command God ever gave to mankind. So why not do it with civil governance as well? Do not let them deceive you. Devotion to Christ through your vocations is not idolatry. Neither is loving your vocations, being excited about your vocations, or treating your vocations as important in word and deed. How can subjects of the kingdom of heaven avoid such mindsets when it comes to serving our king?

So don’t neglect your responsibilities. The kingdom of heaven has appointed you to serve in some capacity within a kingdom on earth. Both kingdoms have therefore been given to you. Christian fathers, you have been given a measure of authority in this world for a blessed purpose. Wield it well. Wield it for your family. Wield it as a Christian above all else. Christian Americans, you have been given a measure of authority and influence in your nation. Wield it well. Wield it for your people. Wield it as a Christian above all else. Don’t fall for the trap of thinking that being aloof or disinterested in your work is pious–even when the devil misuses Scripture to that end.

Don’t be above the fray God calls you to. Be in it.

Posted in Christian Nationalism, Culture, Ethics, Politics | 2 Comments

Is There Marriage in Heaven?

Is there marriage in heaven?

It seems that most Christians will tell you “no” based on Jesus words in Matthew 22:23-33 and it’s parallel account in Luke 20:27-40. I’ll copy both here for the sake of convenience.

According to Matthew:

The same day Sadducees came to him, who say that there is no resurrection, and they asked him a question, saying, “Teacher, Moses said, ‘If a man dies having no children, his brother must marry the widow and raise up children for his brother.’ Now there were seven brothers among us. The first married and died, and having no children left his wife to his brother. So too the second and third, down to the seventh. After them all, the woman died. In the resurrection, therefore, of the seven, whose wife will she be? For they all had her.

But Jesus answered them, “You are wrong because you know neither the Scriptures nor the power of God. For in the resurrection they neither marry nor are given in marriage, but are like the angels in heaven. And as for the resurrection of the dead, have you not read what was said to you by God: ‘I am the God of Abraham, and the God of Isaac, and the God of Jacob’? He is not God of the dead, but of the living.” And when the crowd heard it, they were astonished at his teaching.

According to Luke:

There came to him some Sadducees, those who deny that there is a resurrection, and they asked him a question, saying, “Teacher, Moses wrote for us that if a man’s brother dies, having a wife but no children, the man must take the widow and raise up offspring for his brother. Now there were seven brothers. The first took a wife, and died without children. And the second and the third, and likewise all seven left no children and died. Afterward, the woman also died. In the resurrection, therefore, whose wife will the woman be? For the seven had her as wife.”

And Jesus said to them, “the sons of this age marry and are given in marriage, but those who are considered worthy to attain to that age and to the resurrection from the dead neither marry nor are given in marriage, for they cannot die anymore, because they are equal to the angels and are sons of God, being sons of the resurrection. But that the dead are raised, even Moses showed, in the passage abou the bush, where he calls the Lord the God of Abraham and the God of Isaac and the God of Jacob. Now he is not the God of the dead, but of the living, for all live to him. Then some of the scribes answered, “Teacher, you have spoken well.” For they no longer dared to ask him any question.

Now, it’s easy to see why so many conclude that there will not be marriage in heaven based on Jesus’ words here. For one, it would provide a clear rebuttal of the Sadducees–their riddle being pointless in an afterlife without marriage. For another, if you lift Jesus words and set them apart from the story, “no marriage in the resurrection” is precisely what it sounds like.

But as I wrote a few weeks ago, I’m skeptical of that take.  The more I looked at these texts, the less convinced I became that the common interpretation is the correct one.

First, I have to be honest. I’m looking at these verses so closely because I don’t like the idea that marriage won’t exist in heaven. God’s Word taught me the value of marriage and its centrality to human nature. Accordingly, I find it odd that it also says this very good thing will pass away in the next life–especially when you consider how many people have been deprived of it altogether in this fallen world. God said that in the new heavens and new earth, he would make all things new–not phase out literally the first thing he ever told us to do that lies at the heart of our being made in the image of God.

But I must also remember that sometimes God does things that don’t make sense to fallen mortals like myself. His thoughts are higher than my thoughts, and his ways are higher than my ways. I’ve written before that saying “God would never do X” without Scriptural warrant really just means “I would never do X if I were God.” And since we’re not God, that’s not a terribly meaningful judgment. I see other people make that mistake all the time, so I can hardly consider myself immune to it. When God tells us things we don’t want to hear, our response should be faith seeking understanding. We know what He said and we know He is Good. We need to pray for wisdom to understand the ‘why’.

All that said, attempting to understand why involves meditating on His Word. In doing so, I found a number of textual problems with the usual interpretation that marriage will no longer exist in Paradise:

  1. If you read Jesus’ words in Luke that way, the implication is that we won’t marry in heaven because we won’t die anymore in heaven. In other words, it argues that marriage is not needed where there is no death. (Usually, people add in the speculation that because no one’s dying, we no longer need children to keep the population going.) But marriage very clearly did exist before death in the Garden. It was even commanded, and thus necessary in that sense. So that explanation would put Jesus’ argument at odds with the rest of Scripture.
  2. It doesn’t explain why Jesus changed verb tenses. The Sadducees asked whose wife will the widow be. But Jesus answers in the present tense: they “marry and are given in marriage” and they “neither marry nor are given in marriage”. He also doesn’t talk about the people after the resurrection, but Luke specifies people considered (present tense) worthy to attain to the resurrection. The implication is that they haven’t been resurrected yet. In short, grammatically, Jesus is not talking about a future reality like the Sadducees were, but a present one.
  3. It really makes the angel comparison senseless. It’s worth noting that the Sadducees didn’t believe in angels anymore than they did in the resurrection, so Jesus is apparently trolling them to some extent here. But many have speculated that the comparison works because angels are sexless. Jesus, however, specifies in Luke that the similarity to angels is a matter of immortality and status (“equal to angels,” “sons of God”) rather than a hypothetical sexless nature. What’s more, angels are another subject we don’t know much about Scripturally, and this would be the only statement we have suggesting that they are sexless. With that in mind, Jesus’ comparison would mean practically nothing. That doesn’t sit right, especially when Jesus tells them in Matthew’s account that they’re wrong because they don’t know the Scriptures or God’s power.
  4. This explanation has Jesus answering the Sadducees by giving them a glimpse into a heretofore unknown detail about life in the hereafter. As the Son of God, Jesus certainly has access to insider knowledge and has shown himself willing to share it as he sees fit. But again, that isn’t exactly congruent with his condemnation of the Sadducees in Matthew–that they’re wrong because they don’t know the Scriptures. Wouldn’t his answer to them therefore be in reference to something either stated by Scripture or reasonably deduced from it?

When an explanation doesn’t fit the facts very well, it’s generally not a good explanation. Seeking to understand Christ’s words means finding a better one. So let’s look closely at those words and get a better idea of what he’s saying to us.

So who exactly is Jesus talking about here? “Those who are considered worthy to attain to that age and to the resurrection from the dead” according to Luke’s more detailed account. Notice that he’s not talking about people after the resurrection, but people who are (present tense) considered worthy of it. These are not current citizens of the new heaven and the new earth which will come after the old heaven and earth pass away, but those who will be there. He contrasts them with “sons of this age” who marry and are given in marriage (present tense), so we know he’s not referring to those of us on earth. They are people who are now alive, but they are not living on this earth among those who marry, and they are not yet living in the new heaven and the new earth after the resurrection.

Accordingly, we can conclude that Jesus is talking about those who have already died in Christ and now live with Him in heaven awaiting the Second Coming, the Resurrection of the dead, the final judgement, and the new heavens and the new earth. What exactly is this interim state like? We don’t know too much, but they are at rest, they are in paradise, and their state is temporary.

This interpretation is bolstered by Jesus’ follow-up comment to the Sadducees. They only accepted the five books of Moses, so Jesus proved the Resurrection from those alone by pointing out that God told Moses that He is (present tense) the God of Abraham, Isaac, and Jacob. Not only is Jesus also being very sensitive to Scripture’s verb tenses, he speaks of three men who are in that same intermediate state. Abraham, Isaac, and Jacob live with the rest of the saints awaiting the resurrection. So that is a category he’s already using in this same conversation.

What does Jesus say about them? “They neither marry nor are given in marriage.” Again, notice the present tense on these verbs, and notice that Jesus is deliberately using a different tense than the one used in the Sadducees’ riddle. He does not say that they will not marry. He says that right now, they do not.

I believe we can also conclude that the saints in glory are not currently married either. First, because the natural understanding of Christ’s words as a rebuttal of the Sadducees’ dilemma is that the woman isn’t wife to any of the seven brothers at the moment. Second, it fits with Paul’s testimony in Romans 7 that death severs the bond between husband and wife. Third, it fits with Scripture’s description of the nature of marriage as a one-flesh union: There can be no one-flesh union when that flesh has been destroyed, and Scripture says nothing of the saints in heaven possessing any kind of intermediate bodies before the resurrection.

Therefore, if we read Jesus’ words carefully, he does not say that the resurrected men and women in the new heavens and new earth will never again marry–that marriage will be phased out of human nature. Rather, he says the saints in glory awaiting the final judgment are not married or marrying right now.

With that understanding, the angel comparison makes a lot more sense. In Acts, Luke says that the Sadducees don’t believe in angels or spiritual beings. But Jesus is telling them that the saints in heaven they don’t believe in are just like these other spiritual creatures they don’t believe in. They are immortal just like angels. They are equal in status to angels as well–sons of God. It’s quite irreverent to the Sadducees, of course, but it answers their objection by referring precisely to the qualities they don’t like about spiritual beings. Plus,  it doesn’t require adding extra-biblical concepts like angels being sexless.

So what then does Jesus say here about marriage in the new heaven and the new earth? Nothing! I believe he is deliberately speaking only of the intermediate state after death and before the resurrection. And it is quite natural that marriage is irrelevant to that spiritual state. But none of that suggests that there will be no marriage after the resurrection when we will once again be embodied. Our bodies will be glorified and imperishable, but will still be human, still be male or female, and still possess the perfect nature God designed in Eden–a nature that included a man and a woman uniting as one flesh. Man being alone in that respect was the only thing in Eden that God said was not good.

Is this the only possible understanding of Jesus’ words? No. It is, however, better than the common one. It fits with the immediate context. It fits with the rest of Scripture. It makes sense of Jesus’ change in verb tense. It makes the angel comparison sensible. It could be deduced from Old Testament teachings about one-flesh unions and bodily death. And as far as I know, it doesn’t introduce any new problems.

There is a lot about the next world we don’t know, and we are very limited in our attempts to metaphysically categorize the afterlife. But whatever the details are–and whatever form marriage does (or even doesn’t) take, we know that world will be perfect. We don’t know that because we’ve figured out enough about it to approve. We know it because of who God is. So if my understanding is in error, I’m not particularly worried. God’s got me either way. Nevertheless, I will continue to make sense of his words as best I can according to the wisdom given to me thus far.

Posted in Musings, Theology, Tradition | 9 Comments

The Anti-Government

When Paul tells us be subject to the civil authorities in Romans 13, he also tells us what such government does. God has instituted it and given it the sword to punish evildoers and to be a violent terror to bad conduct. That’s not a pretty job. The nature of its work means that government is always going to involve some brutal people. It’s also going to involve a lot of mistakes as God has given this task to sinful humans. There will be no perfect government this side of heaven, and when it screws up, those screwups will be ugly.

Being a Roman citizen, Paul knew all of this very well even as he delivered God’s instructions to submit. We are to be subject to earthly government, not just perfect government. Accordingly, we don’t just obey the civil authorities insofar as we approve of what they do.

At the same time, however, civil authority is not absolute. The same Paul who wrote this was executed by his government for refusing to submit to it. The only authority government has is given by God, so like the other apostles, he obeyed God rather than man whenever the two were in conflict. And that’s not limited to the work of Apostles or clergy as our theologians often presume. There are many vocations, and even as civil authority goes, government is not the top dog. As I’ve written about before, civil authority is delegated from God to fathers and then fathers delegate to civil government. When it comes to his own household, a father’s authority established by the 4th Commandment supersedes the government’s. Accordingly, resisting government is sometimes part of God-given paternal vocation.

There is, however, another way in which civil government’s power is not absolute: Not everything is truly civil government. There are counterfeits. In functional societies, it’s easy to tell what is and isn’t government; and the West had enjoyed functional government for a very long time. But that doesn’t last forever. There is, for example, legitimate confusion during transitionary periods–when one God-ordained government is fading and God puts another begins taking its place. There are many reasons a governing institution can cease to govern.

But what happens when a governing institution becomes inverted–that is to say, when it retains the sword but makes itself a terror to good conduct rather than bad? By way of analogy, consider a mafia. It’s a sword-bearing institution with enforced rules, authority structures, territories, politics, taxes, and many other characteristics common to government. Nevertheless, we don’t recognize mafias as legitimate civil authorities instituted by God. Why not? Because it does not concern itself with the fundamental responsibility for which civil authority is ordained: punishing wrongdoers and commending rightdoers according to Natural Law. Rather, it’s purpose is the inverse–protecting its own wrongdoers from those who would do right against them.

Now that’s all a mafia ever is, but nothing says institutions which were once legitimate civil authorities can’t descend into the same position. Government can become anti-government; it can become an institution dedicated to punishing rightdoers and commending its own evildoers. I don’t mean when this happens by mistake or unwise policies (accidentally terrorizing good conduct and rewarding evil) but by a fundamental  and far-reaching corruption of purpose.

This is a possibility that every American needs to consider with respect to some of our own governing authorities. If they are not inverted already, they are quickly becoming so.

As our cities burned during the BLM riots, government lied and called them mostly peaceful while “law enforcement” protected the rioters rather than their victims–some even knelt to them. In contrast, when men went to protest an LGBTP pride event, they were arrested for conspiracy to start a riot. (Yes, many people believe Patriot Front were feds in disguise, but it doesn’t matter. Either law enforcement terrorized good conduct by arresting good protestors or they terrorized good conduct by staging an event to threaten would-be protestors in the future.) And as we recently saw in Texas, the police not only steadfastly refused to wield their sword against an active school shooter, they had no problem using it to threaten the parents who intended to fulfill their own vocations by recusing their children. More and more, American laws are only being applied in one direction for the sake of terrorizing rightdoers.

During the pandemic, our government actively promoted fear and terror among the population. It promoted falsehoods, hid truths, and anathematized good-faith investigators. It destroyed our economy and supply chains, traumatized children, sparked rampant inflation, and enforced empty rituals like mask-wearing which range from useless to harmful. Worse yet, it actively tried to coerce my family and many others into taking an unneeded experimental medical treatment by threatening us with destitution. That was an overt, unrepentant, and unprovoked attack against the higher civil authorities God has established. It even forced its way into God’s house and attempted to control or forbid the Divine Service.

As our food supplies are being rapidly and mysteriously destroyed, our government is (at best) abdicating its responsibility to investigate and take action against wrongdoing. Gasoline is becoming unbearable expensive and eventually scarce after the Biden administration deliberately stood in the way of oil production and transportation. As American parents can’t feed their babies amidst the ongoing formula shortage, government is deliberately diverting supplies away from them and giving it to foreign invaders at the border instead. Meanwhile, the government attempts to address inflation with more inflation, and is stopped only because of the supply chains it already destroyed.

And then, of course, there is the all-out attack on the family and God’s order of creation by governments unwavering support of the LGBTP lobby. Hubris month only shines a spotlight on what happens all the time. Government schools are grooming children–inducting them into a world of sexual depravity for the sake of a gaggle of perverts who want to take advantage of them. Every government agency is flying their flag to show their support. From top to bottom, government policy commends these wrongdoers and punishes the rightdoers who would call it out. Sometimes, law enforcement is even deployed against parents who do their jobs and protest this despicable action.

Stuff like this isn’t a matter of accident or poorly constructed policy. Everything on the list is either negligent (absent government) or malicious (inverted government). If it were only one or two of these, you might dismiss it as merely poor government rather than inverted government. But dismissing all of it as such strains credulity to its breaking point.

All that unnecessary strain is merely for the sake of a comforting lie. People are quick to say “Never attribute to malice that which is adequately explained by stupidity.” But one should likewise never attribute to stupidity that which is adequately explained by malice. Neither malice nor stupidity have ever been in short supply, and we shouldn’t let the existence of one blind us to the other. Conservative Christians pretend to ignore malice out of courtesy or magnanimity, but far more often, acknowledging malice would require action on our part that we’re just too scared and lazy to provide. It’s something Christians tell themselves so that we can use Romans 13 to pass our own pusillanimity off as piety.

But where’s the line between incompetence and malfeasance? At what point is it safe to say that a government has become inverted and thus ceases to be a legitimate civil authority which we must obey? The truth is that there is no such line because self-justification isn’t the point. It’s never “safe.” God often uses evil governments to punish evildoers, and Americans certainly fall into that category.

The question is never “when am I justified in rebelling against an inverted civil authority?” Rather, the question is always, “when and how do my God-given vocations require me to oppose an inverted civil authority?” That is a judgment call that depends on your vocations; I cannot answer it for anyone but myself. But as a father, I am a civil authority appointed by God. When there are actions I could take to defend my family against imminent harm, it’s my responsibility to do so.

Of course, one must also keep in mind that an inverted government won’t simply sit back and allow us to defend ourselves. Some rash actions could bring vicious reprisals that make it a net loss for those under our care and therefore unwise. But my point is that when inverted government threatens those in our care, their violent opposition only presents a practical impediment–not a moral one. We always have a responsibility to be wise. We do not have a responsibility to be subject to a mafia passing itself off as a government.

God never leaves us without civil authorities for long. But He also works through earthly means to establish them. When an anti-government arises, those who oppose it will necessarily become terrors to evil conduct. Insofar as they are successful and begin establishing a reliable pattern of restraining wickedness and establishing a just peace, they also become a legitimate government. That’s why governments have continuously changed throughout history, and sometimes Christians are called to be a part of that change.

As Americans now live in a time of change when the old orders are falling apart, we need to understand what God demands of us and be able to distinguish it from the mere traditions of men.

Posted in Christian Nationalism, Culture, Ethics, Law | 3 Comments

Trouble in Paradise

There are always people who hate this world. And I don’t mean because of the Fall–the fact that we suffer because the world has been broken by sin. I mean they hate that God created the world according to His Wisdom rather than their sinful preferences. Sinners being sinners, that shouldn’t be too surprising. The world hates Christ, after all, so why not his creation too?

But hating creation gets trickier when you claim to be Christian. We’re all sinners, of course, so we still have parts of God’s Word that we don’t like. But we also have the Holy Spirit. We’re empowered to respond to our own sinful reticence with faith seeking understanding. We can trust that God’s design is good, have sufficient humility to admit our errancy, and seek His wisdom to eventually understand why. That’s how it’s supposed to work.

But what if you don’t really trust God and refuse to humble yourself? What if you’re only interested in “understanding” why your opinion is good and try to get God on board with it? In that case, self-deception is your only option.

One particular rationalization is becoming popular lately: If there’s something about creation you hate, claim that it won’t be part of the New Creation–that it will cease to exist after Christ’s return. That will give you all the license you need to get a head start on God and either try to remove it now or pretend it’s unimportant now.

It’s an appealing deception because Scripture doesn’t give that much detail about Paradise. And we do know for sure that there are certain staples of our current lives that will not continue in the New Creation (e.g. pain, suffering, death, etc.) The unknowns provide the prideful with fertile ground in which to plant their own inventions.

But limited detail is not that same as no detail. Oftentimes, even the given details are sufficient to disprove hubristic speculations from those who hate God. Let’s look at a few popular false claims about the New Creation:

Hierarchy/authority won’t exist in the New Creation; equality will reign.”

Americans have a bigger problem with authority than most peoples. In fact, we’ve made an idol of equality and enslaved ourselves to it. Naturally, many of us would expect hierarchy to be destroyed along with this sinful world and never show its face again.

But American’s problems aren’t God’s problems. He created hierarchy in the first place. He put man in charge of creation (authority), and gifted Eve to Adam as his helper (hierarchy). Adam and Eve no doubt would have held authority over their children even if the Fall had never occurred. Such authority was entwined with responsibility, but that makes it no less real. All this, God called “very good.”

The new creation will not be bereft of this very good gift. Consider what Jesus taught: In the Upper Room, he told his apostles that in his kingdom, they will sit on thrones judging the twelve tribes of Israel. In his parable of the 10 minas, the faithful servants are given authority over cities according to their labors. Revelation describes kings bringing their glory into New Jerusalem. Based on the Biblical descriptions, authority and hierarchy seem like a normal part of the next life, just as in this one–only without any abuse, negligence, or any other sin that can gives authority a bad name.

Yes, there are times when Jesus corrects his disciples because they were treating authority as a prize to be won for their own prestige. He also taught that hierarchy in the kingdom of heaven is distributed differently than on earth. But if the first shall be last and the last shall be first, there will still be first and last. If the greatest among us would be the servant of all, there is still a greatest. If the humble are exalted and the exalted humbled, there will still be humbled and exalted. Hierarchy and authority endure because Christ remains a king who delegates.

“Races/Nations won’t exist in the New Creation. All human distinctions will pass away.”

The racial divisions in the United States have lead us to a very weird belief. Americans tend to think that race doesn’t really exist as anything more than a prejudice imposed on raceless humans. We believed it because we hoped embracing it would end our racial strife, but… Well, let’s just say it’s not going too well.

How that belief plays out depends on politics. Conservatives try to be consistent about this foolishness. They’ll aspire to be color-blind and embrace the “there’s only one race, the human race” sophistry. They think race is a distraction from “real” issues.

Liberals also think race is superficial, but they don’t bear the burden of consistency. For them, race absolutely exists with respect to their hierarchy of grievance; it helps to determine whether you’re oppressed or oppressor in their narrative. At the same time, how dare you think race means anything at all! They basically think race is adamant when discussing reparations but fungible when discussing immigration.

So both sides associate “nation” with “conflict” and therefore exclude nations from Paradise. But that’s not what God’s Word tells us. As was mentioned, the twelve Apostles will be judging the twelve tribes of Israel, so clearly that nation will persist. And it’s not the only one. John says of New Jerusalem:

By its light will the nations walk, and the kings of the earth will bring their glory into it, and its gate will never be shut by day–and there will be no nigh there. They will bring into it the glory and honor of the nations. But nothing unclean will ever enter it, nor anyone who does what is detestable or false, but only those who are written in the Lamb’s book of life.

Notice how the nations are even implicitly affirmed as holy, for their glory and honor are brought into a place that nothing unclean will enter.

There will be peace in paradise; there will also be nations because nations are good creations of God. That’s why, a few verses later, John talks about the leaves of the tree of life for the healing of the nations. They will not be obliterated. They will be restored.

“The sexes will pass away in the New Creation; humans will be gender-neutral.”

Given the desperation of the degenerate, it should be no surprise that this one makes the list. Many people think Paradise means they’ll finally become the (imaginary) androgynous human they idolize. But the lie is directly contradicted by clear Biblical testimony.

Christ’s resurrected body is the one we’re most familiar with. It’s a good example because when we are resurrected, we shall have glorified bodies akin to Christ’s. As Paul writes in Philippians, “Our citizenship is in heaven, and from it we await a Savior, the Lord Jesus Christ, who will transform our lowly body to be like his glorious body.” We all know the verse, but don’t sleep on the pronouns: “His glorious body. ” As in male. That is likewise how Jesus is always referred to in the Gospels after his resurrection–as male. There are personal neuter pronouns in Greek that the Holy Spirit could have used but did not. This is God’s deliberate word, just as it was for the Father and the Holy Spirit.

So clearly, the male sex will continue in the New Creation. By analogous reasoning, it’s safe to conclude that the female sex will persist as well. The only real alternative is to teach (as some gnostic heretics did) that because women are inferior, God will have to transform them into men to save them. Needless to say, most people pushing this lie won’t go for that.

Now, like most false teachers, they try to overturn the clearer parts of Scripture by means of the more difficult parts. In this case, they’ll refer to Jesus’ words in Luke 20. The Sadducees attempted to disprove the Resurrection by presenting Jesus with a conundrum that would make it ridiculous–an elaborate circumstance in which a woman ended up marrying each of seven brothers during her life, all legally and morally on the up-and-up. Then, they asked Jesus whose wife she would be in the resurrection. Jesus responded, “The sons of this age marry and are given in marriage, but those who are considered worthy to attain to that age and to the resurrection from the dead neither marry nor are given in marriage, for they cannot die anymore, because they are equal to the angels and are sons of God, being sons of the resurrection.”

Now, this comment has often been interpreted to mean that there will be no marriage in paradise. I’m dubious of that interpretation, but let’s just go with it for the moment. The liars here go a step further and speculate that because there will be no marriage, there will be no sexes either. But speculation is all it is. We have many examples of people called to celibacy–who never marry–but are nevertheless men and women. On top of that, Jesus uses both the active “marry” (men) and the passive “be given in marriage” (women) for those in paradise, implying the presence of both men and women. C.S. Lewis has a good examination of this in Mere Christianity if you want to explore it more. But regardless, we do not get to ignore Scripture’s clear testimony in favor of our own speculation.

But as I said, I’m dubious that Christ’s comments are intended to state that there will be no marriage at all in the new Heavens and new Earth. There are a number of textual and theological problems with that explanation. It implies that marriage is only needed because of death, which contradicts Genesis. It fails to explain why Jesus changed verb tenses from future to present. It makes the angel comparison effectively meaningless.

Now, I don’t yet have an alternative explanation that’s better. Maybe I’ll explore this more in a future blog post, but for now I have to be humble and admit that I simply don’t know. It wouldn’t be the first time Jesus said something that’s over my head. Nevertheless, explanations that problematic usually aren’t correct. Therefore, I don’t even concede that marriage will be absent in Paradise. But either way, neither this understanding nor the common one imply an end to the sexes.

There is a lot about the hereafter that we don’t understand now. We know that the new heavens and new earth will be paradise–perfect in every way. As sinners, however, we don’t always recognize perfection when we see it. And the more we refuse to repent of our sins, the more we’ll see perfection as hostility. So be guided by the Spirit rather than your sinful flesh, and refuse to play this petty game of dissecting creation until it’s more to your liking. What God has in store for us will be good, and at the Resurrection we’ll be able to understand precisely why it’s good. In the meantime, we ought to fulfill all of our vocations with respect to our sex, our nation, and our place in God’s hierarchies, for we are without excuse.

Posted in Apologetics, Theology | 3 Comments

How to Sexualize Children

Refusing to teach school children about LGBTP perversions is a no-brainer for anyone with a shred of humanity. So is not teaching children anything behind their parents’ backs and against their wishes. There is absolutely no reason to subject children to such things unless you’re looking to take advantage of them.

Yes, we are burdened with a swarm of individuals who do lack that shred of humanity–LGBTP activists who are becoming utterly unhinged. Yes, their social program depends on corrupting children at a young age. Yes, there are too many people in high places who want to make it easier to molest children. Nevertheless, the more important question is why so many other Americans are willing to follow such people into the mouth of Hell.

The average American knows intuitively that something is horribly wrong with this sort of thing but also lacks a sound moral framework with which to describe why. They usually express their concerns about this issue in terms of not “sexualizing” children. That concern is absolutely legitimate, but unfortunately, not particularly clear.

You don’t have to be a biologist to recognize that we are all either male or female from birth and, at least in that sense, sexual already. Those differing natures do inform our childhoods in certain respects. Boys and girls tend to have different interests, different behavior patterns, and so forth. They also relate to one-another differently. Some kids do have crushes at that age. Others think the opposite sex is weird. The details differ from child to child, but the constant is that there is a difference.

Apart from a handful of woke-scolds, nobody has a problem with these innocent expressions of sexuality in children. On Easter, parents will dress up Jimmy in a suit and tell Susie to wear a dress. They’ll buy them different toys that reflect their divergent interests. They’ll teach Susie to be ladylike and Jimmy to be a gentleman. Such expressions of masculinity and femininity are all part-and-parcel of a normal and healthy childhood.

These things are not what typical Americans mean when they object to the sexualization of kids. However, these things do cultivate a child’s inherent sense of sexuality—the recognition of differences between boys and girls and boundaries regarding how those differences ought to play out. So when predators accuse such parents of being hetero-normative and demand equal representation, “sexualization” isn’t a particularly good objection. At least, not in the moral vacuum which most Americans inhabit. On the contrary, an amoral sense of fairness attempts to silence the screams of conscience and urges them to accommodate the predator instead of driving it off.

To a point, the average Americans could object to the prospect of imposing mature sexuality on immature people. This is what Florida’s law is attempting to prohibit schools from doing. Even moral intuition reliably informs normal humans that there are some sexual behaviors which children should not be exposed to. They are weaker and more vulnerable in virtually every respect than the adults who prey on them. There are intricacies and consequences of sexuality which they are not yet psychologically or emotionally equipped to understand. There’s nothing uncertain about any of this, but it only goes so far. As much controversy as activists generated around Florida, the reality is that 4th grade children and older are still fair game for the groomers.

That mindset is woefully insufficient for protect children from LGBTP predators. Average Americans must go beyond this and learn to consider sexual maturity in a moral sense. LGBTP activists aren’t merely approaching children before they’re ready, but actively damaging their ability to properly become ready. They’re damaging their prospects for healthy sexual maturity.

The difficulty is that Americans cannot speak clearly about sexual maturity in this sense without committing to a clear idea of what it is and isn’t. They need to understand what “normal” means. For that, we need to refer them to precisely what today’s activists are trying to obscure: biology.

Sex makes babies. It’s so good at making babies that even our many methods to achieve sterility end up failing on a regular basis. All the nuts and bolts of sexuality, from our bodies, to the dynamics of attraction, to our desire for permanent relationships are all oriented around successfully procreating. Yes, there are many deviations from that in practice. Any complex system has many points of failure, and some people seem determined to find all of them. But failure doesn’t change what our reproductive systems are for: reproduction.

Long before we were pretending that boys were girls or that two men could be married, we were pretending that children were an accidental byproduct of sex. We pretended that divorce and adultery didn’t hurt children because we decided our feelings were more important than their well-being. We pretended that premarital sex was fine because exploring our feelings was more important than securing a father for our babies. We pretended the child growing in her mother’s womb was no such thing because we wanted sex without raising one. Long before the LGBTP lobby was on the scene, we already had a long tradition of ignoring biological reality simply so we could do whatever we felt like. In short, we decided to become sexually immature, and we can’t blame the rainbow lobby for that.

That is what needs to change in America. It’s not really that we must avoid sexualizing children; it’s that we must sexualize them well instead of poorly–taking not only their age, but their humanity into account. Anything less is simply throwing our children to wolves who are all to happy to fill the void we’ve left with degeneracy and perversion.

A healthy and moral society is going to direct the sexuality of its members towards marriage and family because that’s what genuine sexual maturity looks like. Doing this well is what the virtue of chastity is all about. Chastity doesn’t hide sexuality. After all, even telling your son or daughter, “you’ll understand when you get married and have kids of your own someday” overtly recognizes their inherent sexuality. However, it does so in a an age-appropriate way because rather than forcing them into details which they aren’t ready for, it merely gives them a glimpse of the fruits of sexual maturity. It nurtures rather than undermines.

Parents need to help their children prepare for mature sexuality, just like they do for every other kind of maturity. Sexuality has the awesome power to create life and should be treated accordingly. Anyone with children has had to say, “that’s not a toy” for a variety of things they would hurt themselves with. Sex shouldn’t be an exception.

But LGBT ideology interferes with sexual maturity. Fornication interferes with sexual maturity. So does pedophilia. So does pornography. So does divorce. So do many of the things that both young and old do these days. Such behavior might come “naturally” in the sense that people do it because they feel like doing it. But that doesn’t make it healthy or mature anymore than eating whatever food you feel like is healthy and mature. Feeding children a steady diet of unhealthy sexuality through schools and mass-media makes stable marriages and families a whole lot harder and a whole lot rarer.

When LGBT activists and pedophiles use public schools and media corporations to groom and recruit children, they use tolerance and non-discrimination as their excuse. Hence their “don’t say gay” label on Florida’s law. That tactic has been so effective precisely because so few Americans are willing to admit that sexual morality cannot really be a neutral topic. Nobody wants teachers talking about sex or their personal lives in the classroom, but it’s hard to imagine a childhood where words like mother, father, and marriage never come up in school. Nevertheless, we have rendered ourselves unable to discriminate on the matter.

But parents who understand and embrace chastity—even despite their past failures to live up to that virtue—have no such disability. Because they know that the telos of sexuality is marriage and family, they cannot help but recognize that the endless identities and orientations our culture has invented are not all morally equivalent. They won’t feel the need to be neutral about drag queens at the library and pornography at school because they know perversion doesn’t deserve the same honor due to chastity. No amount of rainbow flags shoved in their faces will deter those who know how to discriminate between right and wrong. They can and will protect their children. They will prepare them for genuine sexual maturity.

The only thing standing in our way is an unwillingness to acknowledge our own wrongdoing and turn away from it. God knows I have my own sins, as most of us do. But we have to step up and admit that we were and/or are wrong. It’s no longer a matter of youthful indiscretions, personal preferences, or feeling ashamed. It’s a matter of whether or not your children are getting groomed by pedophiles.

We stand at the brink of an abyss. Will you turn back for your children’s sake? Or will you push them in to cover your own sins? The choice is yours, America.

Posted in Chastity, Christian Nationalism, Culture, Ethics, Family, Uncategorized | Leave a comment

Revisiting Sodom

One of the amazing things about Holy Scripture is that no matter how many times you might read a particular book or passage, there’s always more that slipped by you the first time. That’s one of the reasons I’ve been enjoying teaching through Genesis this past year. It’s full of stories anyone who grew up in the Church has heard since childhood. But looking at those same stories more closely with older and wiser eyes is always edifying.

This past weekend, we covered Sodom and Gomorrah–from Abraham’s intercession with God to the fate of Lot’s family. It had been a long time since I had looked closely at this text. But Hubris Month is right around the corner, and we can look forward to mega-corps and the perverts who run them celebrating at least two of the seven deadly sins everywhere we look. So it was timely to revisit the original gay pride celebration that gave us the term “Sodomite.”

I of course remembered how the men of Sodom surrounded Lot’s house so that they could gang rape the two angels who visited the city disguised as men in order to see if it was really as bad as people say (spoiler: it was.) I also remembered how Lot unsuccessfully attempted to dissuade them by offering his two virgin daughters to be violated by the mob instead. What I had never really dwelt on before was the Sodomites’ response to Lot: “This fellow came to sojourn, and he has become the judge! Now we will deal worse with you than with them.”

The modern and incoherent judgment of “DON’T JUDGE ME” is, of course, old and tired, but I hadn’t realized it was millennia old. Genesis portrays the same kind of sensitivity to judgement we see today–even in a community where every adult male other than Lot shared their perversions. Lot even tried to be indirect by calling them out about guest right rather than broaching the subject of unchastity. He was even quite “winsome” by offering them a way to address their felt needs. None of that availed, of course. A reproach is a reproach, and the Sodomites’ reflexive response was a threat to rape Lot as well–just to silence the voice of judgment they could never quite shake off even in a city completely dominated by perversion.

One of the common lines from Theological Liberals is that the story of Sodom & Gomorrah does not represent homosexuality as we know it today. In other words, it has nothing to do with the “scientific” category of sexual orientation that lies behind the LGBTP movement. There is a shallow sense in which they’re correct; the gay men I know aren’t the types to show up en masse when fresh meat comes to town. But as usual, the fact that theologically liberal heretics have replaced their religion with fashionable politics had made them myopic to the deeper reality of sin at work.

The men of Sodom were unhinged in a way that most people we encounter are not. They refused any restraint by nature, obviously. They refused any restraint by judgment, as their response to Lot demonstrates. They even refused restraint by local custom–Lot’s appeal to the high value placed on guest right in that culture was meaningless to them. This exceptional universality of their corruption is perhaps why God chose to smite them so dramatically while He’s content to leave the destruction of other corrupt cultures to more mundane means.

But what exactly is the LGBTP movement working for if not the removal of precisely these kinds of restraints? Release from judgment is the most obvious, of course–they cannot abide anybody repeating God’s proclamations regarding their sin. Release from nature is also becoming increasingly obvious. If a man feels like a girl, nature itself must be bent to his whim as surgeons carve a vague resemblance into his flesh. Meanwhile, everyone else is coerced into affirming the charade that men can be women or that men can be married to each other. And in service to that end, culture itself must become a slave to homosexual desire. Even the idea of “mothers’ and “fathers” must be erased from media. School must cease to be a place of learning and become a place where children are abused until they provide the affirmation perverts crave. Even a custom like free speech which was used to give the movement a foothold must be repealed insofar as it could be used to speak out against them.

So no, Sodom isn’t where today’s homosexuals are. Nevertheless, it is precisely the place at which they will stop at nothing to arrive. Sin is not tame; it never learns to sit still.

But there is one other part of the story of Sodom that we ought to reflect on–and it is a much brighter part. Incredibly enough, God invited Abraham into His counsel as he set off to destroy Sodom and Gomorrah. And Abraham famously appealed to God’s justice–that He would not destroy the righteous with the wicked–and secured God’s agreement that if even 10 righteous people were found in Sodom, for their sake, He would not destroy it. As it turns out, there were not even 10 righteous in Sodom, but there were four: Lot, his wife, and his two daughters. God did not spare Sodom for their sake, but neither would He allow His angels to destroy it until they had been brought out of the city.

But let’s consider those four righteous people for a moment.

Not only did Lot offer up his own daughters to be raped by a mob, his addiction to Sodom’s mammon was such that he continually drug his feet when the angels urged him to escape for his life. He even begged them to spare a small town that would have otherwise been destroyed with the region just so that he wouldn’t have to literally flee for the hills. They finally had to drag him out by the hand to get him out of Dodge. Lot’s wife was even more reluctant to leave such a wicked home. She rejected the angels’ warnings about looking back and was caught up the destruction as a result.

And then there are the daughters. In a decision I can only chalk up to having been raised in Sodom, they decided that the only man in the world who could give them a baby was their father. So they each got him drunk and got pregnant by him. But they were actually proud of this sin. One named her son Moab, which means “From father,” and the other named her son Ben-Ammi meaning “son of my people.” They commemorated the evil they had committed for posterity.

My point is this: these are not what we would call “good” people. They were not righteous in the sense of being decent and moral. And yet, God counted them as righteous–sparing them from the destruction he visited on the Sodomites. Lot journeyed from his home with Abraham on account of the Promise God had made to his uncle. Like Abraham, he believed and God counted it to him as righteousness.

Like Lot’s family, American Christians live in an increasingly wicked culture. Time and again, it’s proven that we are not immune from its influence as worldly Christians end up professing the same demonic message as the thralls that surround them. Those who do not realize they have to fight against it will be lost; some of those who do realize fight harder than others; but none of us are immune. Nevertheless, God’s grace is still there for us–for all who yet believe.

America does not have to be destroyed like Sodom or like so many of Lot’s descendants who also met with divine judgement. In God’s longsuffering, we have an opportunity to resist evil and repent of our own involvement in it. So seek grace while it may yet be found.

Lord God,

Have mercy on my nation, for our sins are great. Put an end to our wickedness and turn us away from the evils to which we’ve enslaved ourselves and out children. But just as you would not destroy Sodom for the sake of but ten righteous men, I pray for mercy for the sake of your people amongst us. Do not cut us off from the land as we deserve, but reserve a place for Christian America where we might govern ourselves in peace and righteousness according to your Word.

In Jesus’ name I pray. Amen

Posted in Chastity, Christian Nationalism, Culture, Law, Musings, Paganism, The Modern Church, Theological Liberalism | 2 Comments

Sex is About Making Babies

Now that the left is trying to cope with the possibility that sex may result in a child–without the option of using murder as a do-over–it seems our culture needs a refresher on one of the basics: Sex is (and always has been) all about making babies.

It’s a strange time to live in when such a simple and obvious contention seems so ridiculous to so many. But then, I remember a time in my life when I thought the same. Like most of my generation, I was trained to think that knowing how to avoid pregnancy was the most important thing to know about sex. Having children didn’t exactly come to mind otherwise in pursuit of it in my younger years. And because I imbibed the mechanical thinking of modernism, I presumed that even by the standards of chastity, the exceptions (e.g. barren married couples) unequivocally disproved the rule.

But just as gravity still pulls you to the ground even if you don’t believe in it, so too does the procreative nature of sex exert its influence regardless of our errant thoughts.

It persists in how attraction works. Physically speaking, most of what men and women find attractive has to do with fertility in one way or another. Men, for example, generally appreciate youth and health in women because that’s where the fertility window lands. Women generally appreciate strength and fitness in men because they need support in the long time it takes to bring children to maturity.

The same holds true psychologically. Women tend to be sexually repulsed by weak & insecure men because their instincts are telling them that if they were to have a child with such a man, it would die. Likewise, men prefer debt-free virgins without tattoos because they want to be able to trust that their mate’s children are also their own.

Even when such impulses aren’t part of our conscious deliberations, they remain active. Women generally put on blush because they think it makes them look good, not because they think it makes them look aroused. And yet, simulated arousal is ultimately why blush makes them look “good.” Young men generally work out because they want to be strong & healthy and to look good, not because they think it will make them a better father. And yet, their strength and health are important to their household, which it why being fit looks “good.” And because so much of this takes place instinctively, it doesn’t go away if we decide not to have children. The successful career woman who wants wine & cats instead of children doesn’t suddenly find weak and insecure men attractive just because she doesn’t really need their provision anymore.

But what our psychology whispers subconsciously, our biology screams. Sex makes babies; that’s it’s biological purpose. It’s so obvious that a society like ours which hates children has to come up with an unprecedented variety of potions, pills, equipment, and techniques to try and subvert that purpose. And despite all of that effort, sex is so good at making babies that millions of them are murdered in the womb by those who falsely believed sex wasn’t about making babies.

Recognizing that the reproductive system is for reproducing shouldn’t be any more controversial than recognizing that the respiratory system is for breathing or that the circulatory system for circulating blood. And yet it is. Because behind that harmless and clinical word, “reproduction” lies the awesome power to create new human beings. And with that great power comes the great responsibilities of caring for them and remaining united to the one whose flesh and blood you now share in your children.

For those with no faith even in Providence, these responsibilities are too terrifying to behold. And so, they desperately try to make reality go away and leave them in peace. Accordingly, many people work hard to come up with objections that will give them the authority to have sex without the responsibility to care for their own children. Let’s look at just a few of them:

“Sex isn’t about making babies because 99% of sex acts don’t result in conception!”

This one is the “missing the forest for the trees” objection. They look at sex too granularly–as a collection of discrete “acts” rather than a living whole–because they’re too narrow-minded to appreciate that whole.

It’s akin to saying that gardening isn’t about growing plants because most acts of gardening don’t result in germination. So what? Planting and watering result in germination; tilling, weeding, fertilizing, and pruning don’t. But all of them are done for the sake of growing plants well. Plants have a life cycle that would not exist without germination but encompasses far more than that.

Humans also have a life cycle–and it’s a long one. It takes about 18 years for sex to finish coming to fruition. While only one specific sex act resulted in a child’s conception, the process doesn’t stop there. The child still needs to gestate for nine months. After that, he or she still needs to learn to walk, to speak, to work, and so forth. And throughout all that time, the mother and father need to maintain their relationship because children need both parents. Sure a child can survive with only one, just like they could survive with only one lung or a faulty heart or with brain damage. But there’s a reason the outcomes for single-parent households are so dismal.

Children need their parents’ marriage. A mother and father are bound forever by their flesh & blood even if they refuse to live as husband and wife. But a good parent will do absolutely everything in their power to fulfill that unity and make their marriage work. Marriage is a sexual relationship. And because humans take so long to mature, that relationship needs to persist throughout the various natural fertility changes in life: a woman’s monthly cycle, pregnancy, breastfeeding, menopause, and so forth. Accordingly, there will always be many sexual events that don’t result in conception. Nevertheless, sex is still about having babies because just like gardening revolves around growing plants, marriage revolves around creating a family.

And by the way, there have been many Christian theologians through the centuries who made this same mistake in the opposite direction. They’ve tried to forbid certain sexual activities between husbands and wives because they can’t result in conception. But even though they come to the opposite conclusion of a pagan looking for sexual license, they’re making that same error of missing the forest for the trees. Marriages should be fruitful, yes. But marriages in which the husband and wife actually enjoy one-another are going to be more fruitful in the long-run. Kissing your husband before work or playfully smacking your wife’s bottom don’t result in conception by themselves, but things like that build and maintain a loving relationship which will result in not only conception, but joyfully raising a family together. Same goes for sexual acts in the bedroom that don’t result in conception.

“Sex isn’t about having babies because the barren and the elderly get married and have sex even though they *can’t* have kids”

In engineering, one often goes by Antoine de Saint-Exupery’s famous saying, “Perfection is achieved not when there is nothing more to add, but when there is nothing left to take away.” By that rationale, this argument makes sense. Children can be taken away, therefore they are irrelevant to the design. The trouble is, humans aren’t machines, and we aren’t engineered like them. You don’t reach the essence of humanity by stripping away parts. Many people have lost arms and legs, for example, but we don’t therefore conclude that limbs are irrelevant to the human condition. Likewise, losing the ability to have children doesn’t mean they are irrelevant to sex and marriage.

One could ask why the barren get married in the first place, and the answers wouldn’t be too surprising: love, companionship, sex, partnership in life, and so forth. Those are all good reasons. But the next inquiry should be why marriage provides these things. And the answer is something we just covered: All of these things which develop a husband’s and wife’s relationship also serve to provide children with the parenting that they need.

Those who are involuntarily barren are already keenly aware of this fact.  They usually mourn that they cannot fill this place in their lives which nature has already prepared for them. Many such couples end up adopting children instead so that they may have a family related by love if not by blood. It is similar for those who marry later on in life–past the age of bearing children. They may not grow their families through new births, but they tend to become step-mothers, grandfathers and so forth to the families their spouse raised earlier in their lives. It still revolves around family.

When all is said and done, marriage isn’t only about creating a family, but it encompasses those other things because marriage is about creating a family. So even in these cases, sex is still all about having babies.

“Sex isn’t about having babies because gay sex isn’t about having babies!”

It does seem that way at first glance. Gay sex is certainly sterile by its nature, after all. But that’s only because in certain respects, gay sex has more in common with masturbation than with the real thing.

The word sex implies male & female. That’s why, when organisms reproduce solo, we call them asexual–without sex. Likewise with homosexuality, we’re talking about a couple that only possesses one sex between them. It’s incomplete; only half of the human reproductive system is present. Sure, that half is stimulated in ways that vaguely resemble what happens when both halves are present, but it’s ultimately a simulation.

Well, simulated sex is usually called masturbation. Maybe it’s a simulation with half the reproductive system plus a hand and an imagination. Maybe it’s a simulation with half the reproductive system plus pornography. Maybe it’s a simulation with half the reproductive system plus a sex toy. Maybe it’s a simulation with half the reproductive system plus another instance of that same half. But anyway you slice it, it’s incomplete. There’s still a void where the opposite sex should be.

But even so, it’s still a simulation of something that’s about having babies, and that’s abundantly clear even among homosexuals. The push to pretend two men or two women can be married should make that obvious enough–an enforced layer of pretense to make that void seem a little less empty. Or look at the photoshoot that Pete Buttigieg and his partner had for the babies they acquired. They’re laying there in hospital beds they had no need of and holding babies they purchased rather than delivered. It’s a deliberate simulation of motherhood minus the mother. So even in the extreme perversion of homosexuality, the echo of sex’s true nature is still very apparent.

Sex is all about having babies. That is a brute fact of human nature. What we do with that fact comes down to a simple question: Do you love your humanity or hate it?  Those who hate their humanity will try to dissect it and keep only what they like. But in doing so, they’re only cutting away swaths of who they are. Attacking one’s own nature is inevitably an act of self-hatred whose logical conclusion is suicide.

But those who love their humanity have an opportunity to live and to grow instead. They know it is a gift of God, so they will learn to love sex precisely because He designed it to offer life instead of death. They will also learn to respect it according to the awesome power of creation inherent in it. In other words, they will learn to be chaste. And in learning to love that part of human nature, they will learn to love themselves as well–not according to selfish and sinful desire, but according to what God has created and called us to be in the first place.

Posted in Abortion, Chastity, Ethics, Family, Natural Law | 6 Comments

Overturning Roe Will Breed Conflict; Embrace It and Win

“We know that for those who love God all things work together for good, for those who are called according to his purpose.”

Inscribe these words on your heart, Christian. And understand that they are not an aphorism–a vague statement that things generally work out for the best for the good guys. As Luther recognized, these words are fate. They are destiny. Pain, suffering, an evil world, and even Satan himself cannot help but work on your behalf. No matter what you may suffer, it will work to your benefit. The forces arrayed against us are not only helpless to prevent it, they are your involuntary allies.

That will be important to keep in mind, because with this potential overturning of Roe v. Wade, the demons are going to rage. They will react to the prospect of losing their blood sacrifices the way we would react to being unable to breathe: thrashing about and desperately attempting to get air again. Some of it will make sense. Some of it won’t. All of it will be aimed at our destruction. None of it will truly harm us in the end.

So don’t lose your nerve.

Republicans are going to want to cuck on this because that’s what Republicans do. Some are terrified of being called extremists. Others think that if they actually deliver on abortion, no one will need them anymore. Others worship the same demons as the Democrats. Either way, they will attempt to snatch defeat from the jaws of victory by seeking some kind of compromise. They may even succeed. Our job is to make sure that it’s career suicide for every last one of them who does. Yes, even if it means that the Democrats win the seat for awhile. It’s better to fight the enemy in front of you than contend with an enemy stabbing you in the back. If elections matter at all, then refusing to vote for the traitors is an effective use of them. Even a loss would be an opportunity to clean house.

Democrats are going to throw a fit on this because that’s what Democrats do. Prepare for an even bigger round of mostly peaceful protests. Prepare for false flags to defame and vilify pro-lifers. Prepare for sob stories. And as they suddenly become biologists who know what a woman is and wax poetic about the sanctity of bodily autonomy, remember that they are neither idiots nor hypocrites. They are inveterate liars who operate with zero good faith. You cannot reason or compromise with them. Respect means treating someone as though they are what they are]. So in the case of SJW’s, respect means treating them with pure contempt. Respect means treating them as hostile enemies. Stand firm, concede nothing, let the ree-ing wash over you, and punch back twice as hard at every opportunity.

America’s divisions are going to deepen because of this because we obliterated any common ground sufficient to bridge the gap. If the ruling is delivered more-or-less as written and the Republicans fail to cuck effectively, the issue will go back to the States. Some will ban abortion. Some will try and extend the window past birth. Some will try to find some compromise with evil. An issue like this may actually be sufficient to trigger relocation to other states. Some Americans will flee to jurisdictions that allow them to put off facing the consequences of their debauchery. Other Americans will flee to jurisdictions that are less likely to suffer God’s wrath over the shedding of innocent blood. Others will just want to get away from the rioting.

The Balkanization of America is tragic, so it’s tempting to fight against it to maintain the Union. But the Union is finished–even if it’s not official yet. American civil government is beginning to fail across the board because those under its jurisdiction cannot agree on how to govern. But if relocation means the inevitable breakup can happen along cleaner geographic lines, it will be less bloody. That’s the best America can hope for at this point.

These and other consequences to this upcoming decision mean a whole lot of pain headed our way. There will be no easy victory handed down by the Court. So rejoice and celebrate this decision, but don’t be daunted by the imminent fallout or let it distract you from your vocation. Remember: Americans have been murdering tens of millions of innocent children for several generations. There are few prices that aren’t worth paying to end that. And if it only means an end to America as we know it rather than America as such, then God will have been unfathomably merciful to us.

Posted in Abortion, Christian Nationalism, Politics | 1 Comment