views and thoughts on topics, especially ones pertaining to christianity – with an emphasis on how most christians either ignore or discriminate against unmarried christians – and how christians have turned marriage and parenting into IDOLS and how there is no true support for sexual purity, virginity, or celibacy among christians – this is a blog for me to vent; I seldom permit dissenting views. I don't debate dissenters ————-
Category: the council on biblical manhood and womanhood
Before I paste in excerpts from that editorial by David Brooks below, I wanted to say a few words, and I will be pasting in any relevant links about the Brooks piece even farther below that.
I’ve been saying on this blog FOR YEARS many of the same things that Brooks has outlined in his essay.
Some of what I’ve been saying on this blog for years now includes:
that Christians and conservatives have turned Marriage and The Nuclear Family into idols,
that they have placed weight upon both that the Bible never did, and in the process of advocating marriage, these conservatives and Christians have marginalized the never-married, the divorced, the widowed and the childless or childfree among them, and this is wrong.
The Bible does not teach that marriage – or parenting – are going to “fix” society, or that being married or becoming a parent is necessary to make a person into a moral, upstanding, responsible individual.
If you’re a conservative or a Christian who keeps sounding the alarm about falling marriage rates, you need to accept reality for what it is: most people now are either single and childless by choice or by circumstance.
The United States is simply never going back to the June and Ward Cleaver family structures in mass droves that existed in the 1950s; (Link): so get over it already, and stop trying to punish or guilt trip anyone and everyone who doesn’t marry or have children.
Gender Complementarian book that upholds most every gender stereotype I rail against on this blog
—————————————— Reminder: there is coming a time I will not be blogging here at all, or not nearly as often. Please read more about that situation here: [Blog Break]
This other blog discusses Christian gender complementarianism and covers some of the same topics I discuss on this blog. Here is a review the blogger did about a gender comp book by Murrow:
In his book entitled, “What Your Husband Isn’t Telling You,” David Murrow makes a number generalizations about men. He seems to believe that his view of what it means to be a man is normative, healthy and Christian. He writes as if men are simply “wired this way” by God.
Here are some of his assertions, followed by my responses:
Murrow (makes a number of comments about sex):
… “Men actually get a cocaine-like shot of pleasure from looking at a beautiful woman. So here’s your assignment: Give your husband as many cocaine shots as possible. Satisfy his addiction by looking your best” (pp. 163-164).
“And why are looks so important to men?” “Men compare. Men compete. Men size each other up by their spouses” (p. 164). “Having a knockout wife raises your social standing at work, among your relatives, and even a bit at church” (p. 165).
Women are not responsible for their husbands’ behaviour.
… If he has married his wife because he believes her beauty enhances his social standing at church (or anywhere else), he should seek to understand his worth as a loved child of God and friend of Jesus Christ.
I would encourage you to visit that blog and read the ENTIRE post, click here.
This Murrow guy expends a lot of time and effort blaming women for why their husbands cheat. He puts all responsibility on the woman to stay physically attractive and hot-looking to keep their husbands from looking at porn or from having affairs. First of all, it’s not a woman’s responsibility to keep her man from straying – it’s his own duty.
Secondly, a woman being hot, attractive, sexy, and babelicious does not keep a man from straying, witness all the famous movie star men, sports stars, and male rock singers who get married to stunning model beauties but who have affairs on those wives anyway (see: golfer Tiger Woods).
If you find yourself married to a partner who has let him or herself go, and she/he refuses to get in shape or make an effort at his appearance after you’ve talked to them about it, consider divorce… don’t have an affair or wank off to porn all day.
If a man is that terribly hung up about what his wife looks like, that indicates he is very immature. This disproves the Christian notion, believed and taught by some Christians, that God only grants a spouse to people who are fully deserving of one (e.g., godly, humble, self-less, etc).
Other good posts at that other blog include:
From EQUALITY FOR WOMEN AND MEN IN THE CHRISTIAN FAITH Blog:
I like the title of this blog post, because it gets to the heart of the matter – Christians who are into gender complementarianism claim that women are equal to men, but their views and teachings on women totally belie that claim, because they spend their time rationalizing their sexist views (e.g., women cannot or should not lead or teach men, or husbands have authority over wives, etc):
(Link): Rationalizing Inequality
Susan Patton would be vastly disappointed with me. The mom of two Princeton sons, whose letter to Princeton and now an editorial in the Wall Street Journal telling women in college to marry while there before all of the good fish in the sea are gone, does not want to hear how I didn’t even meet my husband until I was 28, and then I didn’t bother to marry him for another eight years.
….There is also one other huge problem with Patton’s article. She’s wrong. Women with college educations are more likely to be married by 40 than woman without college degrees, whether these women married in college or not.
… I also have theological concerns about Patton’s views on women, men, and marriage. The biggest concern is one I have talked about over and over on this website, and it comes straight from Christian conservative circles as well: it’s the belief that a woman’s primary purpose in life is to marry and have children, and everything else in life should be subsumed under those two roles.
…You will never hear any of these conservatives say that a man’s primary responsibility in life is to be a husband and father to the exclusion of everything else because it is not good for a man to be alone. Just because human beings are created for companionship does not mean that one relationship and family unit should override everything else.
… I’m not saying marriage and parenthood are not vital roles in life or are not needed. I’m happily married. I have to say it’s one of my favorite sacraments. I’m just saying it’s not the be all and end all of life for women, and we need to stop talking about it that way.
Preachers Mark Driscoll and Owen Strachan and other block-headed “gender complementarians” won’t like this news at all, because they measure manhood by standards set by television situation comedies and Hollywood – tough, macho guy image, a la John Wayne, or clean-cut Joe Cool who works a 9 to 5 while the little lady stays at home vacuuming the floor while wearing pearls – rather than by the Bible.
The number of fathers who do not work outside the home has risen markedly in recent years, up to 2 million in 2012.1 High unemployment rates around the time of the Great Recession contributed to the recent increases, but the biggest contributor to long-term growth in these “stay-at-home fathers” is the rising number of fathers who are at home primarily to care for their family.
The number of fathers who are at home with their children for any reason has nearly doubled since 1989, when 1.1 million were in this category.2
It reached its highest point—2.2 million—in 2010, just after the official end of the recession, which spanned from 2007 to 2009. Since that time, the number has fallen slightly, driven mainly by declines in unemployment, according to a new Pew Research Center analysis of U.S. Census Bureau data.3
While most stay-at-home parents are mothers, fathers represent a growing share of all at-home parents – 16% in 2012, up from 10% in 1989. Roughly a quarter of these stay-at-home fathers (23%) report that they are home mainly because they cannot find a job.
A new study out from the Council on Contemporary Families suggests that contrary to most surveys, people are actually more stressed at home than at work.
Three Penn State researchers measured people’s cortisol, which is a stress marker, while they were at work and while they were at home and found it higher at what is supposed to be a place of refuge.
“Further contradicting conventional wisdom, we found that women as well as men have lower levels of stress at work than at home” writes one of the authors, Sarah Damaske, assistant professor of labor and employment relations, sociology and women’s studies at Penn State (the italics are hers).
In fact women even say they feel better at work, she notes. “It is men, not women, who report being happier at home than at work.”
Another surprise is that the findings hold true, says Damaske, for both those with children and without, but more so for nonparents. This is why, the authors conclude, people who work outside the home have better health.
What the study doesn’t measure is whether people are still doing work when they’re at home, whether it’s household work or work brought home from the office. For many men, the end of the workday is a time to kick back. For women who stay home, they never get to leave the office.
And for women who work outside the home, they often are playing catch up with household tasks.
With the blurring of roles, and the fact that the home front lags well behind the workplace in making adjustments for working women, it’s not surprising that women are more stressed at home.
But it’s not just a gender thing. At work, people pretty much know what they’re supposed to be doing: working, earning money, doing the tasks they have to do in order to draw an income.
The bargain is very pure: employee puts in hours of physical or mental labor and employee draws out life-sustaining moola.
Being Childfree, Childless, Infertile, or Dealing With the Death of a Mother on Mother’s Day, An Abusive or Insensitive Mother, Mothers Who Lost Adult Children to Murder or Sickness (links)
Disclaimer: I am not anti-motherhood, nor necessarily against people taking their mothers out to brunch on Mother’s Day, or buying dear old Mom some flowers to mark the occasion.
I am, however, against the excessive focus on motherhood, the failure to acknowledge and celebrate childless and childfree women, the onslaught of syrupy Mother’s Day hoopla, on and before the day, and the church services that honor mothers because:
Some people (women included) were abused by their mothers and so find the holiday awkward or painful,
some people had or have mothers who are/were cruel or overly-critical,
some people’s mothers are dead and they miss them terribly,
some women desire to be a mother but cannot because they are infertile, their spouse is infertile, or they are single and cannot find “Mr. Right” (and don’t believe in getting pregnant outside of marriage, or don’t feel they could support a baby alone)
some women choose to be child free, but feel excluded or shamed by church and secular staggering emphasis on motherhood on the holiday
Some Christians have turned motherhood (as well as fatherhood and marriage) into idols, which they should repent of.
That is one reason why churches are losing visitors and members: despite the fact that 44% of American adults are single (edit: as of 2014 studies, (Link): that figure is now 51% or greater) and a big chunk are childless, most churches either…
– IGNORE adult singles/ childless adults,
-preachers and Christian talking heads insult adult singleness and adult virginity from their blogs, pod casts, books, organizations, and pulpits, by implying or forth rightly saying, that adult singleness (or being childless) makes a person stunted, or makes a person not as “godly” as being married with kids.
Now, why the hell does anyone suppose I, a never-married celibate woman, would want to attend a church where I am insulted before I ever step foot in it?
Most churches spend mountains of money on “family” ministries, family dinners, programs for youth and married couples.
Most churches and denominations do not budget time or money for adult singles anything – not classes, social functions, dinners. The big message from that is, “At our church, we don’t care about adult singles or those without children. You have to be married with a kid to count here.”
If you are a church that has a “Mother’s Day” celebration or ceremony of some sort, even if it’s very brief, you should also have one the following Sunday for all the childless, never-married women, the child free women, and infertile- but- married women too, or women who have not been able to carry a baby to term (ie, miscarry) – it’s only fair.
If you are unwilling to honor ALL women in ALL situations, ages, and life stages, at one time or another during the year in your church, nobody should get a holiday or party, none, nope, nuh-uh.
This post discusses being single and childless or childfree on Mother’s day, or other circumstances that make Mother’s Day painful for some women.
Happy Not-A-Mother’s Day to every woman who might be reading this and does not have children. This coming Sunday, it will be Mother’s Day yet again.
More than likely the author of this article will attend church services with her husband and quite a few children will be passing out flowers for each of the mothers in attendance. When one of them reaches her and starts to place a beautiful blossom in her hand, she will gently refuse but thank him or her anyway.
The child may become confused but that will just have to be.
He or she does need to learn that not all the adult women that are in attendance for church are mothers.
The author is in her very early 40’s, an adult, and a wife but she is not anyone’s mother. For as long as the Earth has existed, the persistent ticking of most women’s biological clocks have equated their lives with one purpose only and that has been to have children.
However in today’s society, great numbers of married women have decided not to have them.
Happily the writer of this article was lucky enough to have been born at a time in history where such a choice was accepted with women, and also to luck out and find a husband who felt the same way she did about children.
Here’s the problem: While “childless” means the condition of being without children, it implies that everyone who does not have children would like to have them. However, being “childfree,” like Mirren—and like me—means that one does not want to have children at all.
….The taboo that surrounds women without children, childless or childfree, is potent.
We spend a lot of time explaining ourselves (or avoiding explaining ourselves) and looking for people who understand us, who don’t ask us to or expect us to explain. But at the same time, the difference between childless and childfree folks is important to take note of and apply correctly, because we are not, in fact, the same.
As a woman who’s childfree, I’m not experiencing reproductive challenges.
I’m not waiting for the right partner, or enough money, or the perfect geographic location.
I don’t feel like something is missing from my life because I don’t have children. I don’t want to have kids. There is no yet.
… That might be hard to swallow, for some—childfree folks constantly hear things like, “You’ll change your mind” and “You’ll regret it.”
Perhaps, because it’s still so unfathomable to the world that a woman wouldn’t want a baby, the term is deliberately misunderstood. If we keep confusing the language, the thinking may go, we can deny that childfree women exist.
The experience of not wanting children in a world where women are defined by their reproductive desire and potential—where women are expected to structure their lives around babies—is very different than being a woman who would like a baby or would like to be a parent some day. That difference has to do with desire.
If you’re a cisgender, heterosexual woman—especially a white woman—who doesn’t have a kid but wants one, you’re still in line with expectations about how a woman should behave.
You’re not threatening, you’re adhering.
A cisgender, straight woman who doesn’t want a baby is transgressive, subversive, pathological, a perpetual mystery to be solved.
Things may be different, of course, if you’re queer, trans, single, poor, or a person of color; as a society, we’re pretty clear on who we want to be having babies.
Mother’s Day is a wonderful celebration – a time when mothers are honored for their constant love and daily sacrifice, and when life itself is recognized and treasured as the gift that it is.
But for many women who have had abortions, Mother’s Day is one of the biggest triggers of painful memories, regrets, and remorse over what “might have been.”
My heart breaks for these women.
Even though they accepted and believed the messages our society esteems so highly – messages about a woman’s right to choose and the importance of “family planning” – these women have learned, through bitter experience, the truth that abortion is tragic for women.
An open letter to ministers, yoga teachers, rabbis, spin instructors, pastors, professors, priests, Zumba leaders, imams, motivational speakers, reverends and anyone addressing mothers and fathers in mid-May or mid-June.
Dear Person at the Front of the Room,
I know you worked really hard on that homily about Mother’s Day/Father’s Day. It’s a time of joy and appreciation and community for almost everyone you address. Thank you for your special sentiments to soothe those in your audience who don’t have their mothers or fathers accessible to them. It’s a nice touch to bring in that compassion.
You may not know this, but there are likely other outliers receiving your message. That 30-something lady who pulled tissues out of her purse and filled up three of them with tears and snot? That man who had to excuse himself awkwardly? That woman who tried to hide the fact that she was sobbing on her yoga mat?
These are people who desperately want to be a mother or father, to join the parenting club at long last. To have the cards and commercials and 30% off sales apply to them. To bring into their lives what others are able to effortlessly.
These are the outliers in your audience.
Let me tell you about some of them.
Could be a woman who found out this morning that her third IVF attempt didn’t work — no line on the pee stick. To make matters worse, she turns 35 next week and her medical chart will be marked AMA — advanced maternal age. Her prospects for success with future treatments looks unbearably bleak.
Could be a couple who has been waiting in an adoption pool for 28 months. Each period she has — each turn of the calendar page — marks another month their prayers have gone unanswered.
Could be a couple who thought they were finally going to be admitted to the Mother’s Day/Father’s Day club, but whose hopes ended in a miscarriage, stillbirth, or neonatal death.
Could be a couple whose planned surrogate is suddenly unavailable to them.
Could be a man who wore the title of Dad for a few months — until his baby died.
Could be a woman who experienced an unexpected pregnancy and took the course to place her baby in the arms of another mother.
Could be a couple who has exhausted their options and who has resigned themselves to living a child-free life. Not so much by choice as by circumstance.
Written by a Child Free, lesbian Woman (you do not have to be a lesbian or agree with or endorse lesbianism to relate to what this woman says):
As the United States moves into the frenzied celebrations of female parenthood, I want to register an alternate voice and declare my autonomy from children. I am not a parent, and I am happy to not be a parent.
I am a child-free woman. According to the U.S. Census Bureau, in 2008, about 17 percent of women between the age of 40 and 44 had not had a child. This is a significant number of women without children in the United States today.
Child-free women do not speak out enough. We are not necessarily women who wanted children but could not have them; we are not necessarily women who forgot to have children; we are not necessarily women who missed a crucial life milestone. Being child-free is not necessarily a source of shame or regret.
I want to say plainly: I am blessed to not have children. I have more time and energy to devote to creative pursuits and projects that fuel my passions in the world.
Mother’s Day can be such a bittersweet time. It is a special day to celebrate our mothers, but for those of us who have lost our mothers, did not have a caring mother or have not been able to experience the joys of motherhood despite trying, it can be a painful reminder.
Sadly, the cheapening of sex is having a long-term impact on marriage… which, in turn, negatively impacts parenting. It’s a tragic chain-reaction of events that work together to undermine the institution of family.
I know that Focus on the Family has a new family-centric film to promote ((Link): unfortunately), and I see the heading there says “cultural impact,” but Mr. Daly, the fact is, some women never marry and never have children, including Christian women.
The Bible does not say God promises all women a marriage partner not even the ones who pray for one and who want one.
If you see my previous post (link), you can see the stats on the number of singles in America.
Many women today are staying single these days, some against their wishes.
(That’s right, the typical conservative Christian canard that women are choosing to stay single because they hate marriage, hate men, or put career above marriage, or had tons of marriage proposals but turned them all down because they were too picky, are false).
There are plenty of Christian women such as myself (though I am half-agnostic now), who were raised in church and by Christian parents to expect, plan for, and count on marriage.
I had hoped for marriage. I still find myself single. I did not plan on being never-married into my 40s. I may never marry.
I am still a virgin. I have never had children.
The church does not support adult virginity – they ignore or shame adult celibate singles (a few links with examples of that can be found at the end of this post, and all over this blog if you search).
It makes no sense, and I see no biblical support, to suggest the only or main reason to argue against casual sex is on the basis of how it may “impact marriage and family.”
[Because the author is now married with a kid] But I no longer have to sacrifice in the way my single friends do either: I won’t go to bed alone tonight, cry over unfulfilled passions, work a demanding full-time job to support myself, solitarily juggle all the details and demands of daily life, or feel like an anomaly at a table of all couples.
I’m over 40, would like to be married, never have been. Never cared too much if I had a kid or not (kids are annoying).
Yes, there are times I’m sad or angry about being single, but I also have many days where I’m okay with it.
I do not appreciate this lady making my life sounds like it’s a total pathetic suck fest because I’m single and childless. Her post is just so very insulting to single, adult, childless women.
It is remarkable to me how Christians will sometimes write these books or blog pages trying to re-assure single adults they are fine the way they are, and that God loves them even un-married and childless- but the tone of their whole piece, or certain comments, are so incredibly condescending, their piece has the exact opposite effect.
And I don’t need someone patting me on the head telling me God loves me just as I am, that I’m okay as a single and childless woman… I already know.
I don’t need your validation. How dare you assume that I do.
People who do this are so arrogant and insensitive, but they think they are being supportive and loving.
By the way, sanctification is an inward work of the Holy Spirit, not the work of singleness, parenting, or marriage.
Anyway, it’s amazing how deeply insensitive these Christian writers can be. The woman who wrote that page probably thinks she is cheering on unmarried, childless women, when in reality, she is insulting their lives.
Her editorial is hinting at, or implying, the somewhat common Christian false idea that singles and the childless are only “one half” a person, are not and cannot be fulfilled as a married parent, and not as worthy to God or culture.
————————- Related posts:
Southern Baptist’s New Sexist “Biblical Woman” Site – Attitudes in Total Face Palm of a Site One Reason Among Many This Unmarried and Childless Woman Is Saying Toodle-Oo to Christianity
There are several reasons I am closer and closer to saying bye-bye to Christianity, but the continued insistence upon Southern Baptists, Neo Calvinists, and other Christian groups, on pushing sexism and codependency for women – under the headings of “gender complementarianism” or “biblical womanhood” – is just one more reason.
I am now blogging about a new site by Southern Baptists about “Biblical womanhood.” (Link to that site, with screen captures from it, is farther below.)
First, a preface: IT’S NOT JUST A WOMAN’S ISSUE
If you are a male, an unmarried male, you need to be concerned about this pushing of gender complementarianism to women. It impacts you as well, oh yes it does.
If you are a male, do not make the deadly mistake of thinking, “Aw, this is just about ladies, it is of no import for me, I am a dude!”
No, no, you couldn’t be more wrong because 1. (Link): this page and 2. they equally oppress, pressure, shame, and hound males who do not live up to their narrowly defined list of rules of what constitutes “biblical manhood.”
Just as gender complementarians limit and enslave women to following a very narrow set of 1950s- American- culturally influenced, un-biblical rules of what constitutes a godly woman (which often includes being married, submitting to a husband, and cranking out children), they do the same to men.
For example, and depending on what type of breed of gender complementarian we are discussing, they usually define “biblical manhood” to mean ‘MAN WHO IS MARRIED TO A WOMAN AND FATHER TO BIOLOGICAL CHILDREN.’
Some Christian biblical manhood advocates further tack on additional qualifiers of what constitutes “biblical manhood,” such as, “spiritual leader of wife,” “steadily employed with a big paycheck, so the wife can stay home all day,” and “manly man who drinks beer, belches loudly and often, and who watches cage fighting with great enthusiasm.”
So, if you are a single male, or you have never been a daddy, and if you do not care for American stereotypical manly man pursuits (e.g., football, NASCAR, copious amounts of beer drinking) and you even prefer artistic pursuits, such as painting and opera, and…
If you find yourself unable to support more than yourself on your pay check alone, you will be treated like a second-class citizen in most Baptist and Neo Calvinist churches.
You will be deemed a failure for not being biblically mannish enough by a host of gender complementarians.
I do find it telling that the Southern Baptists and other gender complementarians seem to expend more effort and time at talking about women’s roles, though.
They seem to crank out more books, sites, and so on, to convince women that being submitted doormats is really honest- to- gosh biblical and not the least demeaning, than they do in cranking out as much material convincing men to be Biblical Tough Guys.
Occasionally, they do, however – about a year ago, preacher Mark Driscoll and other preachers hosted an “Act Like Men” conference (link to that) which emphasized the idea that Christian men should be manly leader men, but it is my impression that conservative Christians are far more obsessed at keeping women in line more so than the males.
Even so, if you are a single, childless, un- or under- employed, or non- football obsessed male, you have a stake in this topic as well.
THE BIBLICAL WOMANHOOD SITE
The Southern Baptist “biblical womanhood” site, as of this writing (Apr. 2014) is a white and pink combination.
Yes, the web pages have a white background, but there is liberal usage of pink-colored fonts and headings all over the place.
Even their “biblical womanhood” logo contains pink. Screen capture of their site’s mast head:
Enough with pink already. I am a woman, but I have never liked pink.
Historically, by the way, pink was for boys and blue was for girls. Read (Link): this and (Link): this for more on that.
I am a woman. I have never liked pink. Even as a child, I did not find pink attractive, and it annoyed the piss out of me that companies and manufacturers went default pink on any product made for girls (and they would toss in rainbows and unicorns on the packaging, too. I’ve nothing against rainbows or unicorns, but I was never a horse or unicorn crazy girly girl, and I resented the notion, even at age ten, that I am SUPPOSED to like both just because I’m a girl.)
Anyway, leave it to a Southern Baptist site that is pushing “gender complementarian” roles to use pink as one of the site’s main colors. They couldn’t break the stereotypes and go with muted teals, greys, or dark red with gold, or other unexpected colors for a woman’s site, oh no, gotta stick with pink because PINK = GIRLY FEMININE! *Sigh.*
Where in the Bible does it say God defines the color pink as a biblical color for expressing womanhood? If that verse is in there, it must have escaped my attention, and yes, I have read the Bible all the way through.
Leave it to a Christian biblical womanhood, or gender complementarian, site that is intending to dispel the notion that gender complementarianism is sexist by… are you ready for this? by… upholding sexist stereotypes! – they do, right there on their site, examples to follow in this post.
Here is just an excerpt or two from the page, but I would encourage you to visit it and read it in its entirety:
by Wade Burleson
… Sometimes I am perplexed by the logic of Southern Baptist assemblies. Rather than boycotting Disney World at our business meetings, we might want to consider a corporate course or two in logic. How can the divorce rate in every state in the union be declining while at the same time the Southern Baptist divorce rate is accelerating, but we Southern Baptists are said to be “accommodating culture”?
… Think. If we Southern Baptists were accommodating culture, we’d see fewer divorces in our churches. Unfortunately, the divorce rate is accelerating among Southern Baptist churches.
I believe I know the reason…
The leaders of our Southern Baptist Convention have been strongly promoting a doctrinal error called The Eternal Subordination of the Son.
…when you go to a church led by a Southern Baptist pastor who promotes it, the emphasis of the teaching will be on “the authority of the husband” and “the subordination of the woman to her husband” (just like Jesus is allegedly eternally subordinate to the Father). When the emphasis in any Christian environment (home, church, marriage, etc…) is on authority, a breach in relationship is ripe.
Again, please (Link): visit the page to read the entire explanation.
——————————- Related posts this blog:
Christian Gender Complementarian Group (CBMW) Anti Virginity and Anti Sexual Purity Stance – and their Anti Homosexual Marriage Position
This is one of those pieces that seems to seek, at least on some level, to affirm virginity, celibacy, and sexual purity, but in the end scheme of things, somewhat undermines all of it to say Christians need to soften their stance on all these issues, because, gosh durn it, don’t you know that some women (who have engaged in consensual pre-marital sex) get really hurt feelings when they hear that the Bible condemns sexual sin, and such teachings makes them doubt their self-worth?
Sexual abuse victims are also tossed into the mix, which is one of my huge pet peeves in these discussions about sexual purity and virginity.
Folks need to keep these issues separate.
Bringing up rape and sexual abuse in conversations about the Bible’s standards on consensual sexual activities unnecessarily muddies the waters, and has the effect of Christians saying,
“These purity and virginity discussions make abuse and rape victims feel just awful, so let’s just water the Bible’s sexual standards down, and even pretend like the Bible does not demand that all people remain virgins until marriage. This will spare the feelings of so many sexual abuse victims.”
The Bible’s teachings on sexual ethics in regards to consensual sex become negated, in other words.
It’s really kind-hearted, nice, and considerate to care about people’s feelings, but to the point where one’s sense of compassion and kindness over-rides definite standards of right and wrong as laid out in the Bible, and to say, “Aw shucks, let’s just explain away or ignore the Bible’s teachings on ‘Topic X!’,” to spare that person’s feelings, no. At that stage, I think you have tip-toed over into heresy.
Notice, too, that even in the headline that the notion of even defending the Bible’s view on sexuality is termed in a derogatory manner: if you are someone who defends the Bible’s position on sex, you are referred to as a “purity pusher.”