"God has given Christianity a masculine feel. And being God, a God of love, He has done that for our maximum flourishing both male and female."
John Piper speaking at the 2012 Desiring God Pastors Conference
Theme: "God, Manhood & Ministry Conference – Building Men for the Body of Christ"
These are the only kind of boxers we like (link)
In case you haven't noticed, MASCULINE CHRISTIANITY is sweeping through conservative evangelical churches like a firestorm. It has been gaining momentum in recent years, with Mark Driscoll providing the spark. Now John Piper has thrown gasoline on the fire and it's burning out of control!
Is this God's plan for the man? You be the judge…
First, let's take a look at how masculine Christianity is manifesting itself at a church in my native state of North Carolina. Egads!
WARNING: Highly Offensive Language!
Yes, you heard that right. Here are the exact words of Pastor Sean Harris:
“So your little son starts acting a little girlish when he's four years old and instead of squashing that like a cockroach and saying, ‘Man up, son, get that dress off you and get outside and dig a ditch cause that's what boys do,’ you get out the camera and you start taking pictures of Johnny acting like a female and then you upload it to YouTube and everybody laughs about it and next thing you know, this dude, this kid is acting out childhood fantasies that should have been squashed! Can I make it any clearer? Dads, the second you see your son dropping the limp wrist, you walk over there and crack that wrist! Man up. Give him a good punch. OK? You're not going to act like that. You were made by God to be a male and you're gonna be a male. And when your daughter starts acting too butch, you rein her in. And you say oh no! Oh no, sweetheart. You can play sports. Play 'em. Play 'em to to the glory of God, but sometimes you're gonna act like a girl and walk like a girl, talk like a girl, and smell like a girl, and that means you're gonna be beautiful, you're gonna be attractive, you're gonna dress yourself up. You say, 'Can I take charge like this as a parent?' Yeah, you can. You're authorized. I just gave you a special dispensation this morning to do that.”
The only thing remotely funny about this situation is that instead of uploading effeminate pictures or videos of "Johnny" onto the internet, someone took this pastor's advice and uploaded a video of his rant on YouTube.
One of our astute commenters, Sergius Martin-George, alerted us that Pastor Sean Harris has gone on record in recent days with an explanation for the above commentary, which you can listen to here. He has publicly apologized and regrets his offensive words which he wishes he could take back. What a great teaching moment for other pastors! The internet is a powerful tool, and pastors need to be extremely careful with what they say or they may be apologizing just like Pastor Sean Harris.
Perhaps Pastor Harris has been reading Dr. Cliff Self's book MAN UP. These guys are so original… Can you believe there is such a thing as Manupministries? Here is some information at that website:
"What does it mean to Man UP and release the champion in you? To MAN UP means to be all the man I was created to be. When I MAN UP, I tap into all the power of manhood. I release the champion in me and accomplish supernatural results. How did I get to be a man? Do I qualify as a real man, or do I fall short? How do you Man UP and get the power and wisdom needed for manhood? How do you handle life as a real man? We must make the Man UP discovery. So, buy the book, listen to the podcasts, give us your feedback and discover the champion in you!"
A cottage industry is being built on this newfangled idea of "Masculine Christianity". Not only do we have John Piper to thank, but we believe this man (featured below) is primarily responsible for copycat ministries that bring out the macho in men.
Here are Mark Driscoll's exact words:
"And I don't think there's anything purer than two guys in a cage – no balls, no sticks, no bats, no help, no team – and just see which man is better. And as a pastor and as a Bible teacher, I think that God made men masculine; he made humanity male and female; and uh men and women are different, not that one is good and the other's bad, that's why I married a woman, I'm very glad to be married to her. Um, but I think men are made for combat, men are made for conflict, men are made for dominion. And it doesn't matter what you do to a bunch of guys. I mean you can put 'em in the wost public high school and tell 'em that they just need to just you know be into their feelings and talk about their feelings and cry a lot and finger paint their inner life, and the end of the day they're still gonna wanna thrown down and when they go to recess two guys are gonna go at it and see which one is the dude, and that's just the way men are made. So we either allow that in a way that is violence and inappropriate, which is what a lot of guys do through criminal activity, or we put it together as a viable legitimate sport and let men be men and do what men do and let the other fat lazy men sit around and criticize them while watching."
This post is intentionally brief because we want to encourage you to watch a recent ESPN documentary (approximately 20 minutes long) called A Fight for Faith. You will learn about the tragic story of a former college linebacker named George Clinkscale, who participated in an unsanctioned charity boxing match for Guts Church and died.
Who is speaking out against the absolute idiocy of Masculine Christianity? At long last voices are being raised against these ungodly interpretations of Scripture. More on that in our upcoming post…
Lydia's Corner: Ezekiel 31:1-32:32 Hebrews 12:14-29 Psalm 113:1-114:8 Proverbs 27:18-20