CBMW Publishes Its Nashville Statement – Some Are Asking Why Now?

"Evangelicals [need] to come together to produce a new statement of conviction concerning these current challenges. This will be hard work and will likely take some time. But it will be worth the effort to produce a statement of evangelical unity on these matters that can serve as a reference point for churches and Christian organizations that are looking for confessional language on these issues."

Denny Burk

http://commons.wikimedia.org/wiki/File:Aiga_toilets_inv.svg

Male / Female Symbols

Thirty years ago (1987) a group of evangelical leaders held a clandestine meeting in Danvers, Massachusetts to hammer out their core beliefs which would come to be known as "The Danvers Statement". It purportedly justified the need for the Council on Biblical Manhood and Womanhood (CBMW). The following year this group published the Danvers Statement in its final form. You can read the rationale and affirmations here.

The term "complementarian" was invented by this group. Not only that, key leaders of CBMW began promoting something called "The Eternal Subordination of the Son (to the Father) aka ESS. Those who affirm ESS claim that the Son is eternally subordinate to the Father, as is the Holy Spirit. Rachel Miller has written an excellent summary in case you would like more detail. Many consider ESS (as well as EFS and ERAS) to be heretical.

As we have previously discussed, last November the focus of last year's Evangelical Theological Society meeting was "The Trinity".  There were heated debates about it, and we kept waiting for the ETS to release some sort of information regarding what had been discussed. Nothing was forthcoming.

Then Kevin Giles shared some very important information, which we discussed in our posts entitled:

Kevin Giles on the Rise and Fall of the Complementarian Doctrine of the Trinity

Kevin Giles on Complementarians Who Now Reject Wayne Grudem's View of the Trinity

In the second post, we highlighted these words by Kevin Giles in his recently released book The Rise and Fall of the Complementarian Doctrine of the Trinity:

"Powerful complementarians who a year ago were enthusiastically teaching the complementarian doctrine of a hierarchical ordered Trinity and confidently grounding women’s subordination in divine life are now saying they reject this teaching."

When Denny Burk was named as CBMW president (due to Owen Strachan's resignation), Aimee Byrd challenged him in her post What Denny Burk Could Do. To our knowledge, she received no response.

In the wake of The Trinity debate at last year's ETS meeting and thirty years after the Danvers Statement was crafted, CBMW, which now describes itself as "A Coalition for Biblical Sexuality"  has released a new manifesto called the Nashville Statement.

John Piper has already gushed over it. In a recent CBMW post, Denny Burk explained why they came up with this statement and why now. In that post, he explained about the timing of the Nashville Statement (see below):

1. Timing

I have been asked numerous times today why this statement and why now? We began planning this statement months ago. In fact, when I accepted the position as president of CBMW over a year ago, I announced what we planned to do:

Evangelicals [need] to come together to produce a new statement of conviction concerning these current challenges. This will be hard work and will likely take some time. But it will be worth the effort to produce a statement of evangelical unity on these matters that can serve as a reference point for churches and Christian organizations that are looking for confessional language on these issues. We will need all hands on deck for this effort, and I am hopeful that a broad coalition of like-minded brothers and sisters will come together to have a hand in this work. I am confident that we can achieve this.

About nine months ago, we began making plans to convene the meeting in partnership with the ERLC’s research institute (which is headed by my good friend Andrew Walker). The ERLC’s national conference is held annually in late August. So once ERLC agreed to host our meeting to finalize the draft, the date was set—August 25. We have been planning for this particular date for many months now.

I'm irritated about the above date (August 25) they selected because that's my birthday!

According to an article in The Tennessean,

It's named after Nashville because a coalition of scholars, pastors and other leaders finalized a draft of the statement in Nashville, said Denny Burk, president of The Council on Biblical Manhood and Womanhood, in an email. 

The group met last week at the Gaylord Opryland Resort and Convention Center during the annual conference for the Southern Baptist Convention's Ethics and Religious Liberty Commission.

The mayor of Nashville is upset about the statement's name, and Burk explained the reasoning behind it (see below)

There is a long Christian tradition of naming doctrinal statements after the places where they were drawn up: The Nicene Creed (325), the Constantinopolitan Creed (381), the Chalcedonian Creed (451), etc. Even more recently, there was the Barmen Declaration (1934), The Chicago Statement on Biblical Inerrancy (1978), The Danvers Statement (1987), and the Manhattan Declaration (2009). There are countless other examples. In each case, the name simply indicates where the statements were drawn up. Whether The Nashville Statement will prove to be as enduring as those others remains to be seen. But that is the reason for the name. We were simply following a precedent set by many before us.

In his post, Denny Burk indicated that they have received the most push back because of Article 10, which states:

WE AFFIRM that it is sinful to approve of homosexual immorality or transgenderism and that such approval constitutes an essential departure from Christian faithfulness and witness.

WE DENY that the approval of homosexual immorality or transgenderism is a matter of moral indifference about which otherwise faithful Christians should agree to disagree.

Aimee Byrd over at Mortification of Spin has expressed her concerns about this new statement by the Council on Biblical Manhood and Womahood (see screen shots below)

http://www.alliancenet.org/mos/housewife-theologian/a-few-questions-about-the-new-cbmw-statement?utm_content=bufferf44a1&utm_medium=social&utm_source=facebook.com&utm_campaign=buffer#.WaYbLIqQwUu

http://www.alliancenet.org/mos/housewife-theologian/a-few-questions-about-the-new-cbmw-statement?utm_content=bufferf44a1&utm_medium=social&utm_source=facebook.com&utm_campaign=buffer#.WaYbLIqQwUu

Various news outlets are beginning to respond to the Nashville Statement and leveling much criticism at CBMW. If you just search "Nashville Statement", you will see what we mean.

One of our astute readers had this to say regarding the Nashville Statement:

This is going to turn out badly.  Of all the things they could rally around, why this?  Statistically, the types of churches that would sign on to this probably have many more abused children and women in their congregations than people who are LGBT. This shows that they don’t care about abuse. Many people are going to be damaged by the fallout of this.  I don’t believe the signers care all that much about LGBT issues.  I think it’s a backdoor way to subordinate women now that ESS failed.  See articles 3, 4, and 13, and this statement from the preamble: “his good purposes for us include our personal and physical design as male and female.”  They are using the LGBT issue to solidify gender roles, which directly supports their goal to subordinate women.  The people damaged by this new statement will be shrugged off as incidental collateral damage.

We hope you will take a look at the Nashville Statement and share your thoughts with us.


Comments

CBMW Publishes Its Nashville Statement – Some Are Asking Why Now? — 809 Comments

  1. Gram3 wrote:

    Yes, but the people who issued the Nashville Statement are inerrantist, and those are the people we would like to accept LGBTQ persons on the same basis as they would heterosexual persons who are not married.

    Gracious, is it that bad?

  2. Josh wrote:

    So even for some who maintain traditional views, this takes a stricter position than what they consider to be traditional sexual ethics.

    That is a concise summary of the problem with the Nashville Statement.

  3. okrapod wrote:

    Gracious, is it that bad?

    Let me try again. As it stands now, some people in the conservative church think being gay is sinful in itself. I don’t see how that can be sustained from the text. Behavior outside of marriage is another thing, just as it is with heterosexuals. That is what I meant. It shouldn’t matter if a single person is gay or straight if they are celibate, even in the conservative church. The Nashville Statement goes way beyond that.

  4. Gram3 wrote:

    I hope someone with some internet skills (Dave A A

    My Internet skills have, unfortunately, not kept up the past few years. Thankfully we have Brad to help out.
    I did notice their separate cbsexuality.org site, which I’m unsure if anyone here referenced (haven’t read all comments). It contains an article by Burk explaining their purpose with the “brand-new initiative”. https://cbsexuality.org/homosexuality/a-coalition-on-biblical-sexuality/
    He leads with an anecdote about “how a broken-hearted mother explains to her daughter that her father is no longer walking with Jesus anymore.” Because Dad came out as a homosexual and deserted them. Of course– Dad would not also not be walking with Jesus had he deserted them for a woman, a casino, or a bottle, a needle, or whatever. Because it’s for a man or men, this requires a new focus apparently not covered by Danvers.

  5. okrapod wrote:

    Gracious, is it that bad?

    My understanding of the Nashville Statement is that – hang on, let me pull the PDF out of the Trash and check – Article 7 (you’d think I’d have this thing memorized by now) says that merely having a non-straight or non-cisgender “self-conception” is outside the bounds of true Christianity. The other articles do seem to make room for people who continue to “struggle” with their desires, but per Article 7, only insofar as they do so from within a framework of viewing themselves as “straight people with a homosexual problem” (to quote Joseph Nicolosi from memory).

    As Dee mentioned upthread, Denny Burk does go even further in claiming in his own writings that merely experiencing “SSA” is intrinsically sinful. This extremist and incredibly damaging view did not make it into the Nashville Statement (I am somewhat surprised at that), so hey, it could be worse!

  6. Dave A A wrote:

    @ Dave A A:
    CBMW appears to be abandoning the CBS website, as there are no articles since June– even any link to Nashville.

    Weird. Looks like they decided to go all in on resuscitating CBMW as if ESS never existed.

  7. ZechZav wrote:

    What was the motive of the men of Sodom, of Canaan and Corinth, and what is the motive of gays and lesbians today? They are actually worlds apart.

    This reminds me of “The Shawshank Redemption”. When Andy realizes that Boggs and his gang are taking an… interest in him, he asks Red whether it would help to tell them that he’s not gay. To which Red replies, “Neither are they. You have to be human to be homosexual. They don’t qualify.”

    I’ve often wondered whether that would accurately describe the men of Sodom.

  8. @ Darlene’s comment:
    “And so I go back to Daisy’s original comment in which she stated that sex outside of marriage is not approved of in the Bible. I agree with her statement. I cannot find anywhere in Scripture where it is acceptable for unmarried Christians to have sexual relations. And I don’t understand how anyone can arrive at a contrary position.”

    Funny thing, I can find no explicit declaration anywhere in the Bible which prohibits sekshul stuff for unmarried Christians. Not even in the old Levitical codes, which by the way, is the source from which much of the Christian sexual ethos is derived.

    I guess we’ll just have to agree to disagree and leave it at that. Thanx for the dialogue though, I enjoy reading your comments because from them I can better understand where conservative Christians are coming from without the whole convo turning into a naval gun battle in the North Atlantic (so to speak).

  9. numo wrote:

    @ Darlene:
    Well, I’m not elastigirl, but i have to say, people who comment here come from a wide variety of backgrounds, and it’s sort of unrealistic to expect that everyone’s opinion – and interpretation of scripture – is going to be the same.

    Fwiw, I’m Lutheran, and not an inerrantist.

    And I’m not an Evangelical nor a Protestant. I’m an Eastern Orthodox Christian.

    But I think the gist of what I was saying is simple. I happen to think that the Bible makes some statements about certain behaviors and practices in an unambiguous way. Otherwise, the alternative is that nobody can say the Bible says X, Y or Z about anything. Because none of it is clear and the whole kit and kaboodle is a bunch of garbled mish-mash. In which case we should throw it in the trash and be done with it.

    Should someone say that the Bible says X about a particular matter or topic, does not mean that there are not exceptions to the rule (per my post up thread), i.e. – anomalies. Although I’d say that when it comes to child sex abuse and paedophilia, we can throw those exceptions & anomalies out the window, because there aren’t any in this case.

    But overall,. Christians should never regard the Bible as a hard and fast rule book (the letter of the law). The Pharisees were like that & always testing Jesus to see if He would play by their rules. Like that time when He refused to take part in stoning the woman caught in adultery. There is always something greater than the law. It is showing mercy and compassion.

  10. okrapod wrote:

    The issue of trans is a new concept on which there is no long standing church teaching or tradition and no current unanimity of thinking

    I was listening to a podcast about English history a while back and they talked about a woman who dressed as a man and was greatly praises in the church. They also said that often men who dressed as women were more associated with prostitution and that was one of the reasons it was not well thought of. The other reason was that a woman who aspired to be a man was trying for something elevated while a man striving to be a woman was lowering himself. It was an interesting podcast.

    Also the reformation 21 guy missed pretty much everything about women. Don’t know if he just agrees or it went over his head.

    Considering that he referred to church fathers as his moral center, and many said awful things about women, I think maybe he should take a step back. And that’s not even getting into the cult labels! What arrogance from a ‘new’ Christian.

  11. @ numo:
    Numo: Your response to me at 5:27 a.m. shows you weren’t listening to a thing I said in my 3:47 a.m. comment. I ended by saying, “Let the reader understand” – and it’s apparent you didn’t by your response to me.

    Honestly, where do I hope from here? 🙁

  12. Lea wrote:

    Josh wrote:

    Involuntarily Celibate.
    It seems to come up on reddit in conjunction with men’s rights activism, which is a bag of crazy that I avoid opening at all costs.

    Yes, that is my understanding. A bunch of people who are very angry with women for not sleeping with them, basically. (the reddit version of this) *now I might have a lot to say about this topic but this isn’t really the forum for it*

    Different from someone choosing to abstain.

    And then we’ve got the ‘Christian’ MRA’s who are a bag of crazy times a thousand. They don’t even attempt to hide their hatred and disgust for women. They wear it with a badge of honor. Dalrock, anyone?

  13. Max wrote:

    This is the New Calvinist season … for now.

    Max, during The Jesus Movement, back in the 60′ & 70’s, the Calvinists were barely a bleep on the radar.

    New Calvinism > This too will pass.

  14. Darlene wrote:

    Dalrock, anyone?

    Oh great. I was blissfully unaware of this person until now. I don’t think I want to read anymore than I just saw, but maybe people like this are why some dude the other day griped that I didn’t ‘initiate’ enough and now I was apparently supposed to do that. Or, you know, ignore him and move on to someone who isn’t mad after a handful of text exchanges? Ugh.

  15. Gram3 wrote:

    okrapod wrote:

    Gracious, is it that bad?

    Let me try again. As it stands now, some people in the conservative church think being gay is sinful in itself. I don’t see how that can be sustained from the text. Behavior outside of marriage is another thing, just as it is with heterosexuals. That is what I meant. It shouldn’t matter if a single person is gay or straight if they are celibate, even in the conservative church. The Nashville Statement goes way beyond that.

    I agree, Gram3. The drafters of this Nashville Statement are beginning to appear like panicked, paranoid prudes. If they could, I believe they would reside in the minds all Christians and control their every thought.

  16. Josh wrote:

    Denny Burk does go even further in claiming in his own writings that merely experiencing “SSA” is intrinsically sinful.

    ISTM that total depravity covers a lot of bases. Behaviors are another matter. I would be interested in who called out Driscoll and when and who did not, if you get my drift. Did Matt Chandler call out Driscoll and did Matt Chandler sign the NS?

  17. Gram3 wrote:

    ISTM that total depravity covers a lot of bases.

    What I mean by that is that heterosexuals have no reason to boast.

  18. @ Darlene:
    Oh, i got what you said. I was trying to restate my previous reply, which I wonder about, as far as you seeing what I was trying to say.

    Just curious: were you raised Orthodox, or did you come from an evangelical background?

  19. Darlene wrote:

    Max, during The Jesus Movement, back in the 60′ & 70’s, the Calvinists were barely a bleep on the radar.

    New Calvinism > This too will pass.

    For the past 150 years, Calvinism was barely a bleep on the Southern Baptist radar. Slave-holding Calvinists (including pastors and deacons) founded the SBC and thought for sure that sovereign God was on their side in the Civil War, until early Confederate victories turned to defeat. Following the War, Southern Baptists distanced themselves from Calvinist theology and remained distinctly non-Calvinist in belief and practice for 150+ years … until Al Mohler and his New Calvinist army started taking the denomination back to its roots. New Calvinism will not pass soon enough as far as a once-great evangelistic denomination is concerned. New Calvinism and SBC will probably “pass” about the same time.

  20. @ numo:
    *hugs* numo. That’s a lot like the experience of some in our family. If you don’t fit some kind of perfect mold (and even your “imperfections” and struggles must meet their standards), you are out in the cold with conventional church attenders and leaders.

    The other outcasts show compassion and understanding and even real help.

    Maybe that’s why Jesus is a sympathetic character.

    And also why there’s that standing joke about the guy who keeps trying to get in a church and people keep throwing him out, and while he’s sitting on the curb weeping, Jesus sits down next to him and says something like, “Yeah, I know, I’ve been trying to get into that place for just years…”

  21. @ Refugee:
    Thank you, and yes, they do.

    I’m truly convinced that the signatories + whoever wrote this “statement” wouldn’t recognize Jesus if they tripped and fell over him.

    Don’t know if you read internetmonk dot com, but this issue was raised in their “Saturday Brunch” post – a lot of really good and insightful comments on it.

  22. @ Refugee:
    Have you ever read Robert Farrar Capon on the parables? He did a great job with the parable of the great banquet in particular, but all his takes are good, including the ones from way out in the outfield.

    He points out – and I’ve noticed – that Jesus wasn’t exactly a charter member of the Morality Police. The table was open to everyone in his house, except for those who decided they’d be better off elsewhere…

  23. ZechZav wrote:

    Muslin, fka Dee Holmes wrote:

    Yeah, I’d get fired from my job if I persisted in using a transgender person’s deadname or inappropriate pronouns. (See Article 11.) It’s completely unacceptable at the too big to fail bank that employs me. It’d be just like what happened to the guy who kept harassing his Jehovah’s Witness coworkers when I worked at the help desk. He got counseled, he got written up, he finally got canned. (They really gave him a lot of rope.) It’s not a crime to be transgender or a Jehovah’s Witness and it’s not conducive to a good work environment to have that kind of friction under the surface.

    I think it is really good that employers have this kind of policy. I work in a large financial institution with a strong diversity policy that prohibits discrimination or ill-treatment on the grounds of race, skin colour, gender, sexual orientation, disability and many other things. It shows that they value the dignity and personhood of every single human being.

    Sigh. And yet we heard testimonials at our former church that would characterize this as persecution of christians.

    It is an odd world that we live in.

  24. @ Muff Potter:
    Thanks! Couldn’t miss out on this one. But am still very preoccupied with… current events is one way of putting it. Do distressing that reading about further abuses in various churches is just not something i csn do ATM.

  25. @ numo:
    I have heard a few references to internetmonk. Will have to check them out. I do most of my “food for thought” reading here and at SSB, occasionally visit Tim’s train wreck blog and “Love Joy Feminism” (when someone close to me alerts me to a topic we’ve discussed in our recovery from worm theology and second-class citizenship). Daisy’s blog has had good food for thought in rethinking complementarianism, as well, and seeing why it has such a capacity for harm. (I know some very happy complementarians who seem to think if people would just get right with Jesus then complementarianism would be the perfect model for marriage…)

  26. @ Refugee:
    A further thought… some of these “complementarianism is god’s perfect design for marriage so everyone should do it” go so far as to put the cart before the horse and seem to imply that part of “getting right with Jesus” is being a complementarian, whether or not you’re abiding and even if you have no intention of abiding in him.

  27. @ Refugee:
    Imonk is a good blog in general, though their focus is pretty general. You might also really enjoy Pete Enns’ blog (link is in list over @ imonk; can’t think,of it offhand).

    Enns is evangelical, but in a very different manner to the writers of this “statement.” He’s also a Biblical scholar in ways that would drive the signers around.the.bend. And he’s able to talk about things in plain English + has a good sense of humor. He’s written a number of books, too. Some are academic and some are for a general readership. I think you’d like him.

  28. @ Refugee:
    I can only hack reading a certain amount of material on abuse. Have found it more helpful to check out sites that are oriented toward truly merciful, healthy faith and practice, though i needed this site as part of my own recovery. (More for interactions in comments than for the posts per se. I’m very grateful for the Deebs!)

    Anymore, I’m very concerned about things going down (mostly) in public affairs, and that’s been very burdensome. So I’ve cut back on my participation here a whole lot.

  29. I see some things a little differently.

    Having been both SBC back in the day and later Free Will Baptist I see, especially in retrospect, the calvinistic influence in some SBC ideas and practices right on, way before this current bunch of people. I think I see it because of the comparison between the two kinds of Baptists, general and particular.

    Similarly I see residuals of some old cultural ideas coming to the surface. One hundred and fifty years is not that long. Old ideas never die, they may fade with time but they are not gone forever.

    We must not take this tiger cub home with us and keep it for a pet. Tigers cannot be tamed.

    I do wish that I did not have to talk in code, but like somebody said, let the reader understand.

  30. Darlene wrote:

    It just so happened that many of these Christian families fell upon hard times. And, when push came to shove, they stole food in order that their children wouldn’t die. What Christian with an ounce of compassion would criticize or condemn such actions?

    A fat smug Christian who has never personally known hard times.

    Remember Job’s Counselors.

  31. numo wrote:

    Don’t know if you read internetmonk dot com, but this issue was raised in their “Saturday Brunch” post – a lot of really good and insightful comments on it.

    Yeah.
    This Manifesto of theirs is coming under a LOT of outside scrutiny.

  32. numo wrote:

    @ Darlene:
    Oh, i got what you said. I was trying to restate my previous reply, which I wonder about, as far as you seeing what I was trying to say.

    Just curious: were you raised Orthodox, or did you come from an evangelical background?

    Numo, I was raised in an atheist home – no religious upbringing whatsoever. Then I became a Christian in my early twenties. But that particular church revealed itself to be a toxic cult, so I left. Then made my rounds through all the various Protestant denominations and found each of them lacking in what I was looking for – which I won’t go into now or this post would become much too lengthy.

    The long & short of it is that I settled on the Orthodox Church. Not that it doesn’t have problems – I’d have to be quite naive to think otherwise. But it doesn’t have the craziness that is so prevalent in much Evangelicalism.

  33. Headless Unicorn Guy wrote:

    numo wrote:

    Don’t know if you read internetmonk dot com, but this issue was raised in their “Saturday Brunch” post – a lot of really good and insightful comments on it.

    Yeah.
    This Manifesto of theirs is coming under a LOT of outside scrutiny.

    Which I’m sure they’ll interpret as PERSECUTION, PERSECUTION, PERSECUTION!!!

  34. These six things the Lord hates,
    Yes, seven are an abomination to Him:
    A proud look,
    A lying tongue,
    Hands that shed innocent blood,
    A heart that devises wicked plans,
    Feet that are swift in running to evil,
    A false witness who speaks lies,
    And one who sows discord among brethren.

    Stuff the Nashville Bros Hate:
    Gay People
    Women who don’t know their place.

    I know which one I’ll stick to.

  35. Lea wrote:

    Stuff the Nashville Bros Hate:
    Gay People
    Women who don’t know their place.

    I know which one I’ll stick to.

    Yes, I agree with you these people hate gays and women.

  36. Headless Unicorn Guy wrote:

    This Manifesto of theirs is coming under a LOT of outside scrutiny.

    That’s to be expected from non-conservatives and secular sources. There are ample grounds, IMHO, to critique it on very conservative grounds. In fact, I think that CBMW has created much of the grief in conservative churches by focusing so narrowly on the sexual aspect of our identities. *Everything* is sorted into HyperMale and HyperFemale artificial constructs that nobody actually can be. It is all fake. And so the need for endless conferences, blogs, books, guilt. The Nashville Statement will forever be compromised by CBMW’s Whhistory and the failure of its signatories to hold themselves accountable. Why should anyone pay any attention to anything they say? Where is their moral authority?

  37. Gram3 wrote:

    I need a clue.

    I can talk about what I see as the calvinistic influences even back in the day compared to the FWB arminianism. But as to the ‘cultural influences’ from the old south that linger in some of the ideas of the calvinistas, that gets into that-which-must-not-be-discsssed here.

    The bit about calvinist influence would be a long discussion and I am way past being up to that tonight. Any more I give out about supper time. Used to be I could go to school all day, grab a few hours of sleep and then work the night shift at the hospital and stay up the entire next day in school. It was never easy but I did it and did a lot of it. Any more I am lucky to make it through supper. Sigh. I miss having all that stamina.

    I miss the night shift also. All those people asleep and only you to watch for problems and either solve them or get help. It makes you feel like a guardian angel or something. Very meaningful. Very rewarding.

  38. okrapod wrote:

    I miss having all that stamina.

    Us older folks had more energy when we were younger, but not much wisdom. Now that we have wisdom, we don’t have any energy! Strange how that works, but since you brought it up … this is exactly why the church needs multi-generations. We need the energy of youth coupled with the wisdom of age … young folks to speed things up a bit, older folks to slow it down. The YRR are missing so much not having us around.

  39. I saw my pastor posting about this and asked myself why another statement. Individual denominations have long had statements about LBGT issues and there have already been things like the Manhattan Declaration to clarify generally within orthodox Christianity. No more is needed, except for the need to have a show of superiority and, as is suggested here, to keep authority over us rebellious women.

  40. @ Darlene:

    hi, Darlene. I sincerely hope i didn’t cause offense with my original comment. it wasn’t meant as a challenge, but trying to figure out my own questions. i respect and value your contribution to the blog comments here. so, just want to let you know that.

  41. okrapod wrote:

    that gets into that-which-must-not-be-discsssed here.

    Right. I can think of several things from the mid nineteenth century that are rhyming. Mid twentieth century, for that matter. I hope the sensible center can hold, but I have my doubts that anyone wants it to hold.

  42. Muff Potter wrote:

    Funny thing, I can find no explicit declaration anywhere in the Bible which prohibits sekshul stuff for unmarried Christians. Not even in the old Levitical codes, which by the way, is the source from which much of the Christian sexual ethos is derived.
    I guess we’ll just have to agree to disagree and leave it at that. Thanx for the dialogue though, I enjoy reading your comments because from them I can better understand where conservative Christians are coming from without the whole convo turning into a naval gun battle in the North Atlantic (so to speak).

    The NT says that if one burns with lust, to marry… the implication being that sex outside of marital bonds is a no-no.

    My issue is I’d like to be married, but I can’t really wave a magic wand and make one magically appear, and I’m not going to marry just anyone.

    But yes, the Bible teaches that sexual activity outside of marriage is sin. That is biblical sexual ethics 101.

    I cannot even believe that on a blog mostly populated by people who claim to be Christians that this would be in dispute.

    It’s pretty gross that I should have to defend why I’m a virgin past the age of 40.

    There’s nothing exceptional or special about me – I have sexual desire.

    Abstaining is a matter of choice and self-discipline – it’s something anyone can accomplish.

    Is Premarital Sex a Sin? Bible Scholars Respond
    http://www.seedbed.com/is-premarital-sex-a-sin-bible-scholars-respond/

    You said, “Not even in the old Levitical codes”

    See Deuteronomy 22:13-21. (The expectation for someone entering marriage was virginity.)

    Hetero unmarried are expected to remain virgins, so too are those with homosexual orientations. I’m a hetero who has been chaste this long – those of LGBT orientations can also abstain this long.

  43. Muff Potter wrote:

    Funny thing, I can find no explicit declaration anywhere in the Bible which prohibits sekshul stuff for unmarried Christians. Not even in the old Levitical codes, which by the way, is the source from which much of the Christian sexual ethos is derived.

    I very much dispute that. Just left you a remark but it has not approved to appear yet, please scroll back up at some point later to check it out. Thank you.

  44. Max wrote:

    Now that we have wisdom, we don’t have any energy!

    Now that we are old, we know more about what truly matters.

  45. Daisy wrote:

    Muff Potter wrote:
    Funny thing, I can find no explicit declaration anywhere in the Bible which prohibits sekshul stuff for unmarried Christians. Not even in the old Levitical codes, which by the way, is the source from which much of the Christian sexual ethos is derived.
    I very much dispute that. Just left you a remark but it has not approved to appear yet, please scroll back up at some point later to check it out. Thank you.

    I think we should just leave this topic as it is a digression (admittedly caused by one of my comments). I could also get started on a number of Scriptures but this is a digression from the topic CMBW. I will agree to disagree.

    I clarified my original point in an earlier post and I am sorry for causing the conversation to get side-tracked.

  46. Muff Potter wrote:

    I enjoy reading your comments because from them I can better understand where conservative Christians are coming from without the whole convo turning into a naval gun battle in the North Atlantic (so to speak).

    Hahaha! 🙂

  47. @ Daisy:
    I’ll check back later and see what you say. My general thought is that it isn’t prohibited at all in the Old Testament except as relates to property (women). The new testament is a bit different though.

  48. A passing thought on “why now?”: They couldn’t come up with the requisite 95 articles to publish on Oct 31st.

  49. This is what Denny Burk wants. He wants to spread the net further and encompass all gender and sexual identities. He doesn’t seem to understand that even if a Christian has strongly held objections against homosexuals and transgendered people, it is not right to embark on a crusade against your fellow man. Christians should never be complicit in exacting damage to those we disagree with or see as less than ourselves. I say NO to the Nashville Statement. I say NO to the Council on Biblical Manhood and Womanhood.

  50. Shirley Taylor wrote:

    This is what Denny Burk wants. He wants to spread the net further and encompass all gender and sexual identities. He doesn’t seem to understand that even if a Christian has strongly held objections against homosexuals and transgendered people, it is not right to embark on a crusade against your fellow man. Christians should never be complicit in exacting damage to those we disagree with or see as less than ourselves. I say NO to the Nashville Statement. I say NO to the Council on Biblical Manhood and Womanhood.

    Hear hear. Well said 🙂

  51. Gram3 wrote:

    Now that we are old, we know more about what truly matters.

    Amen! Age doesn’t always result in wisdom, but it helps! Life can teach you a lot, if you let it.

    “Let us hear the conclusion of the whole matter: Fear God and keep His commandments; for this is the whole duty of man.” (Ecclesiastes 12:13)

  52. Max wrote:

    okrapod wrote:
    I miss having all that stamina.
    Us older folks had more energy when we were younger, but not much wisdom. Now that we have wisdom, we don’t have any energy! Strange how that works, but since you brought it up … this is exactly why the church needs multi-generations. We need the energy of youth coupled with the wisdom of age … young folks to speed things up a bit, older folks to slow it down. The YRR are missing so much not having us around.

    Yes. A healthy church needs the whole body. Young, old and in between.

  53. Mae wrote:

    Max wrote:

    okrapod wrote:
    I miss having all that stamina.
    Us older folks had more energy when we were younger, but not much wisdom. Now that we have wisdom, we don’t have any energy! Strange how that works, but since you brought it up … this is exactly why the church needs multi-generations. We need the energy of youth coupled with the wisdom of age … young folks to speed things up a bit, older folks to slow it down. The YRR are missing so much not having us around.

    Yes. A healthy church needs the whole body. Young, old and in between.

    Oddly enough, I can’t recall that this is one of those definitive Nine Marks, y’know.

    Do their proponents claim the Nine Marks are sufficient and complete, by the way? I mean, they might have covered their hineys by saying that there was always more to say. It has been years since I read the book.

  54. Gram3 wrote:

    I think that CBMW has created much of the grief in conservative churches by focusing so narrowly on the sexual aspect of our identities.

    I think this is why I see many finding common ground in their revulsion with identity politics either side practices.

  55. Shirley Taylor wrote:

    This is what Denny Burk wants. He wants to spread the net further and encompass all gender and sexual identities. He doesn’t seem to understand that even if a Christian has strongly held objections against homosexuals and transgendered people, it is not right to embark on a crusade against your fellow man.

    It seems obvious to me that CBMW needs to reboot after a year of humiliation. This is not the way, IMO, and I am as conservative as they are on paper. The difference is they go beyond what the text says. Drawing lines in the sand of Universal Church Orthodoxy is not what they should be doing as if they are some kind of Super-Ecumenical Council of the Church. The fact that it was sponsored by Baptists makes that all the more ironic.

    It would have been better, IMO, to have taken more time and care to make a positive statement of what the text reveals about Creation anthropology, post-Fall realities, and New Creation hope in Christ. That way bridges and conversations are possible between individuals rather than walls and attacks between interest groups that are defensive and offensive.

  56. Thersites wrote:

    revulsion with identity politics either side practices.

    If I can reduce you from a Person to an Identity (Target), then it is easier to vilify you, dismiss you, attack you, or even kill you (figuratively or really.) I will feel righteous about it, too, because you deserve it.

    There’s an epidemic of it, but the pictures of people being so good to one another in Houston has been a salve to my soul.

  57. Dave A A wrote:

    It contains an article by Burk explaining their purpose with the “brand-new initiative”. https://cbsexuality.org/homosexuality/a-coalition-on-biblical-sexuality/
    He leads with an anecdote about “how a broken-hearted mother explains to her daughter that her father is no longer walking with Jesus anymore.” Because Dad came out as a homosexual and deserted them. Of course– Dad would not also not be walking with Jesus had he deserted them for a woman, a casino, or a bottle, a needle, or whatever. Because it’s for a man or men, this requires a new focus apparently not covered by Danvers.

    What if Dad walked away from Jesus because of corporate greed? Do ya think Denny Burke would be exposing the evils of that? It seems to me that the CBMW folks think homosexuality is the worst sin on the face of the Earth. So they have to talk about it incessantly.

  58. okrapod wrote:

    This might be comment 666.

    It’s okay, Okrapod. I changed that. Can’t be leaving the comments section at 666. It might bring down a curse on TWW. 🙂

  59. Gram3 wrote:

    It would have been better, IMO, to have taken more time and care to make a positive statement of what the text reveals about Creation anthropology, post-Fall realities, and New Creation hope in Christ. That way bridges and conversations are possible between individuals rather than walls and attacks between interest groups that are defensive and offensive.

    Except I highly doubt CBMW is interested in bridges and conversations. They are determined to remain in their insulated echo chamber, staunchly issuing ex cathedra decrees from on high.

  60. Daisy wrote:

    It’s pretty gross that I should have to defend why I’m a virgin past the age of 40.

    Daisy, you don’t have to defend it. Just do what you think is right.

    But sometimes other people will make different decisions.

  61. @ Darlene:

    Maybe he was thinking about that case in I believe it was Andy Stanley’s church where a dad came out, left his family, took up with his same sex lover and everybody was just hunky dorey with that. It was described as so great that this man was sitting in church both with his former family and his lover, and the wife thought all of it was just fine and was friends of a sort apparently with the lover.

    The moral of the story being if you leave your family for a same sex lover that is all well and good, but that the same thinking did not apply in other circumstances.

    IMO, there are circumstances to leave, coming out may be one, but it is not the only one and no distinctions in favor of same sex lovers should be made.

  62. Muff Potter wrote:

    @ Darlene’s comment:
    “And so I go back to Daisy’s original comment in which she stated that sex outside of marriage is not approved of in the Bible. I agree with her statement. I cannot find anywhere in Scripture where it is acceptable for unmarried Christians to have sexual relations. And I don’t understand how anyone can arrive at a contrary position.”

    Funny thing, I can find no explicit declaration anywhere in the Bible which prohibits sekshul stuff for unmarried Christians. Not even in the old Levitical codes, which by the way, is the source from which much of the Christian sexual ethos is derived.

    I guess we’ll just have to agree to disagree and leave it at that. Thanx for the dialogue though, I enjoy reading your comments because from them I can better understand where conservative Christians are coming from without the whole convo turning into a naval gun battle in the North Atlantic (so to speak).

    Muff, I suppose then that we would have to render the word fornication meaningless. Yes, we will have to agree to disagree… amicably, of course. 🙂

    By the way, I don’t place myself in that category of “Conservative”. I long ago abandoned the Fundagelical Camp.

  63. okrapod wrote:

    It was described as so great that this man was sitting in church both with his former family and his lover, and the wife thought all of it was just fine and was friends of a sort apparently with the lover.

    Maybe there was something missing in their marriage and she was happy to know why? And maybe that there was nothing she could have done to change it because it was just who he was. I could see that going down.

  64. Serving Kids In Japan wrote:

    ZechZav wrote:

    What was the motive of the men of Sodom, of Canaan and Corinth, and what is the motive of gays and lesbians today? They are actually worlds apart.

    This reminds me of “The Shawshank Redemption”. When Andy realizes that Boggs and his gang are taking an… interest in him, he asks Red whether it would help to tell them that he’s not gay. To which Red replies, “Neither are they. You have to be human to be homosexual. They don’t qualify.”

    That quote from Shawshank Redemption got me to thinking: what if the law declared homosexuality illegal and and with it came the death penalty. What if all citizens were required by law to report all such persons to the authorities? Would we as Christians be willing to hide and protect such persons from the authorities? I would see this as no different than the plight of the Jewish people who lived in the Nazi Regime.

    But I think I can guess what side the CBMW folks would come down on. I shudder to think of it.

  65. @ Daisy:
    Daisy, everything you said in your post from Saturday, 11:15 p.m. – I completely agree. You are not a lone voice here with regard to the subject of: premarital sexual relations as it pertains to Christians.

  66. okrapod wrote:

    Maybe he was thinking about that case in I believe it was Andy Stanley’s church where a dad came out, left his family, took up with his same sex lover and everybody was just hunky dorey with that. It was described as so great that this man was sitting in church both with his former family and his lover, and the wife thought all of it was just fine and was friends of a sort apparently with the lover.

    Is this the situation in question?

    http://www.christianitytoday.com/pastors/2012/may-online-only/andy-stanley-al-mohler-and-homosexuality.html

  67. okrapod wrote:

    I miss the night shift also. All those people asleep and only you to watch for problems and either solve them or get help. It makes you feel like a guardian angel or something. Very meaningful. Very rewarding.

    I have great memories of working at a drug and alcohol rehab center at night. We had some very serious emergencies on more than one occasion during those wee hours of the morning. Night shift – the time when most everyone is asleep, but you are awake and earning a living. Nothing else quite like that feeling.

  68. Darlene wrote:

    @ Daisy:
    Daisy, everything you said in your post from Saturday, 11:15 p.m. – I completely agree. You are not a lone voice here with regard to the subject of: premarital sexual relations as it pertains to Christians.

    To add to my comment. If it doesn’t really matter, I’d tell you to go out and have as many flings as you want. “Eat, drink, be merry, for tomorrow we die”.

  69. elastigirl wrote:

    @ Darlene:

    hi, Darlene. I sincerely hope i didn’t cause offense with my original comment. it wasn’t meant as a challenge, but trying to figure out my own questions. i respect and value your contribution to the blog comments here. so, just want to let you know that.

    Thank you, Elastigirl. I appreciate your comments here at TWW as well.

  70. okrapod wrote:

    The moral of the story being if you leave your family for a same sex lover that is all well and good, but that the same thinking did not apply in other circumstances.

    I’m thinking that if he had left his family for a younger woman the reaction might have been different. But (per the PC crowd) he could rightly say that he was simply following his true heart, which finds young perky women more attractive than women who have been worn out by raising kids.

  71. Darlene wrote:

    They are determined to remain in their insulated echo chamber, staunchly issuing ex cathedra decrees from on high.

    Except that who is signing and who is not signing is…interesting. Maybe there have been some dissenting ideas in, say, Philadelphia, Dallas, St. Louis, Jackson, Chicago, and some other places too numerous to mention. I am assuming that the SBC was already nailed down tight by Mohler before the NS, but I may be wrong on that…

  72. Ken F (aka Tweed) wrote:

    I’m thinking that if he had left his family for a younger woman the reaction might have been different.

    The difference is that the man should never have married a woman to began with. In a sense (assuming she was unaware) he was lying to her about his true self. I think this scenario would more akin to an annulment that the one you are highlighting. They really ARE different. I would feel differently about the two scenarios. Not talking ‘sin’, just emotionally.

  73. Lea wrote:

    The difference is that the man should never have married a woman to began with.

    I agree with that part. There are a lot of things we must do in life that we don’t want to do. Once a man starts a family he has an obligation to stick with that family. I don’t see why a man should be able to so easily back out of such an obligation for being attracted to another man rather than to another woman. What difference does it make at that point? Unless there was some kind of abuse or illegal activity going on, I tend to think a person who enters into such an obligation should suck it up and meet the obligation.

  74. @ Ken F (aka Tweed):

    I agree with this. I have never sought a relationship with a girl for this reason – it would be very dishonest and unfair to her. I do a gay guy who got married to a woman and 15 years later he came out and said that getting married was a big mistake. However he and his wife have got through this and they have been faithful to each other, and they are still together. If a man leaves his family for another man, it is just as sinful and destructive as it would be for another woman.

  75. Ken F (aka Tweed) wrote:

    Unless there was some kind of abuse or illegal activity going on, I tend to think a person who enters into such an obligation should suck it up and meet the obligation.

    I would absolutely *loathe* the idea that my husband was just sticking with his ‘obligation’ in such a case. I would absolutely not want to remain in such a marriage. You think of it as the husband leaving the wife…perhaps in that case the spouses should decide together, with heavy preference given to the wife’s feelings in this case.

  76. Darlene wrote:

    But I think I can guess what side the CBMW folks would come down on. </blockquoteot
    Well, I know some, and I don't think that would happen. The Reconstructionists were the ones who wanted that, and CBMW did not have any Recons among their founders, IIRC, but I may be wrong about that. That was a long time ago in Gram years.

  77. @ Lea:
    I should add the caveat that sometimes decisions might be made for the sake of the kids, or different decisions made at different points in life, and that is also something a couple might decide together. I am not saying leaving is the only thing to do, but that i can understand the perspective of a wife who is more ok with that than a man leaving her for another woman.

  78. Darlene wrote:

    Except I highly doubt CBMW is interested in bridges and conversations.

    One of the things I like about the TWW culture is much more willingness to engage significant differences via conversation rather than shunning, name calling and categorization, this is something very rare in online comment sections.

    I think your comment points out how CBMW exhibits the same intolerance I see occurring on the nearby college campus. From both ends of that spectrum there appears to be an unwillingness to accept other belief systems. They are the true believers who suppose they have it all figured out, other beliefs should be suppressed. This is not to say that all points of view are valid, just that none can point to an agreed upon sacred writ and even then we would have varied interpretation.

    There has been a lot of social change in my six decades and we appear to be living in an even more unstable time. The only way I see avoiding going over the precipice is for more discussion among participants and avoiding a separation into tribal groups. Even if I agreed with CBMW, putting out a “statement” is not a conversation starter but a brick wall that shuts it down. If CBMW proponents were actually interested in even a possibility of making an impact they could start with dialog and relationship, it simply won’t happen with a dictum issued by imperious strangers.

  79. @ ZechZav, @ Lea:
    There are many variables in these situations, including whether the couple has had children or not. In some cases, it is the straight spouse who desires the divorce. Sometimes, this is because the gay spouse was unfaithful, but sometimes it has more to do with emotional / relational factors.

    Beyond those scenarios, sometimes the straight spouse initiates divorce due to feeling deceived by the gay spouse because the latter had been perceived as hiding his or her orientation from the straight spouse. In this case particularly, both are victims of insensitive, damaging teaching from the church, which has often been guilty of teaching that if a gay person conceives of themselves as straight and prays and does reparative therapy, having faith in “healing,” God will make them straight.

    Thus, they are encouraged to marry an unwitting straight spouse and lie, either saying that they are already straight, or that God will surely make them so through a marriage in faith. This is done in good faith by the gay spouse, and taken in good faith by the straight spouse. When the gay spouse later confesses that it’s not working, the straight spouse can read this as a deception, which can create incredible instability as the straight spouse questions whether anything they’ve felt over the course of the relationship is real at all.

    (This puts us back at the requirement for lifelong celibacy, which is not at all comparable to the ordinary “waiting until marriage” required of straight people – a point that continues to be lost on many.)

  80. Josh wrote:

    as the straight spouse questions whether anything they’ve felt over the course of the relationship is real at all.

    And although I have not been in this particular situation (aside from finding out a guy I went out with a few times in high school is gay which is not at ALL comparable!), i obviously identify so much with this perspective. I can see, intellectually, the possibility that the gay spouse was actually trying to do what they thought was correct and biblical and it didn’t work, because it simply didn’t work. Although in the real life scenario of similar nature, the gay spouse was lying and cheating the entire marriage to the point of contracting a disease. So obviously that was a pretty bad example.
    Josh wrote:

    (This puts us back at the requirement for lifelong celibacy, which is not at all comparable to the ordinary “waiting until marriage” required of straight people – a point that continues to be lost on many.)

    I am in complete agreement with you on this, however I understand Daisy’s point also that in practice it may feel very much the same. The difference is the straight individual may still have a *hope* of getting married and being sexually active. The gay person is given no such hope.

  81. Lea wrote:

    Although in the real life scenario of similar nature

    I messed up this sentence. I meant to say I had this happen to someone in know in real life, and it was not well meaning attempt at not being gay that simply ended badly (which was my expectation when they got married).

  82. Lea wrote:

    Ken F (aka Tweed) wrote:
    I’m thinking that if he had left his family for a younger woman the reaction might have been different.
    The difference is that the man should never have married a woman to began with. In a sense (assuming she was unaware) he was lying to her about his true self. I think this scenario would more akin to an annulment that the one you are highlighting. They really ARE different. I would feel differently about the two scenarios. Not talking ‘sin’, just emotionally.

    My friend’s daughter faced a deception like this. Was married six years, two small children. Found gay pornography, confronted husband, found out he had a boyfriend too.
    She went for an annulment, rather then a divorce, as she felt the marriage was a fraud. She also sought and got, full custody of her girls.

  83. Lea wrote:

    Although in the real life scenario of similar nature, the gay spouse was lying and cheating the entire marriage to the point of contracting a disease. So obviously that was a pretty bad example.

    Yeah, while that has some of the dynamics, that sort of infidelity changes the picture drastically. It’s safe to say that there is a whole spectrum, from faithful to very not faithful. That scenario is going to hurt the straight spouse in multiple ways: not only the infidelity, but also the discovery that the love they were shown may have been not what they thought it was.

    I am in complete agreement with you on this, however I understand Daisy’s point also that in practice it may feel very much the same. The difference is the straight individual may still have a *hope* of getting married and being sexually active. The gay person is given no such hope.

    How it feels to any one person can vary significantly. It’s true with mandatory lifelong celibacy, too; some people aren’t too bothered by it, while others feel incredible distress at the prospect (I was kind of in the middle on that when I believed that I had to be celibate forever). It remains, though, that having the possibility of marriage – however remote that may be – and being told that you can never ever ever fall in love or be loved by someone who truly understands you, are two distinct situations.

  84. Darlene wrote:

    @ Daisy:
    Daisy, everything you said in your post from Saturday, 11:15 p.m. – I completely agree. You are not a lone voice here with regard to the subject of: premarital sexual relations as it pertains to Christians.

    Same here. My read of the scripture is, sex outside of marriage is prohibited.

  85. Josh wrote:

    and being told that you can never ever ever fall in love or be loved by someone who truly understands you

    I want to say i did not mean to minimize love, in all this talk of sex. Sex is much easier to come by than every day love, with someone who understands you. That’s the goal. IMO.

  86. ZechZav wrote:

    If a man leaves his family for another man, it is just as sinful and destructive as it would be for another woman.

    That was the main point I was trying to make. I am having hard time coming up with situations where changing the gender of the third person makes much of a difference. It seems like it’s currently in vogue to somehow condone or celebrate a spouse leaving a marriage for a homosexual relationship, but not in vogue to respond the same if a spouse leaves for a heterosexual relationship. I’m not advocating for either. I believe obligations should count for something and the both parties should do what they can to work through the marriage difficulties. That said, sometimes the only reasonable outcome is divorce, and I am not against that where it makes sense. I just see what appears to be a bit of a double standard based on the gender of the third party.

  87. Lea wrote:

    I would absolutely *loathe* the idea that my husband was just sticking with his ‘obligation’ in such a case. I would absolutely not want to remain in such a marriage.

    Perhaps you’ve not yet gone through any rough times in your marriage where obligation is what keeps the marriage afloat. During tough times, it can be very comforting to know that your spouse is fully in whether they feel like it or not simply because they are committed to their vows. I would hate to be in a marriage where I could not be sure that my wife would not change her mind about me on a whim. I agree with you that a marriage should include more than just obligation. But there are stages when that is the only thing to hang on to. These can occur during major life challenges or changes.

  88. Ken F (aka Tweed) wrote:

    Perhaps you’ve not yet gone through any rough times in your marriage where obligation is what keeps the marriage afloat.

    Are you honestly equating rough times to a gay husband??????

  89. Ken F (aka Tweed) wrote:

    I just see what appears to be a bit of a double standard based on the gender of the third party.

    That was my original point. Somehow if somebody leaves because of a same sex lover then everybody is a hero and the abandoned wife, and I suppose the kids, are supposed to rejoice and all will be well. But if somebody leaves because of an opposite sex lover then all *** breaks loose and blame is dished out to everybody in sight including the one who got left.

    This is ridiculous, unfair and maxi-congitively askew. Like I said, gay may well be a reason to leave, but it is not the only reason, and this unjust thinking is not fair.

    And yes, for everybody, once you have kids you have to do what is best for them-which may be either leave or stay but for sure the parent is not at liberty to just consider themselves and ignore the welfare of the children. Making heroes out of people in gay/straight marriages who divorce while making villains out out of others who divorce is, well, not biblical to use an inflammatory term.

  90. Lea wrote:

    Are you honestly equating rough times to a gay husband??????

    No. Absolutely not. Maybe I misunderstood what you wrote earlier. It sounded like you thought a marriage based only on obligation would be terrible. But I think you meant being married to a gay man would be terrible.

    Back to my original thought. Is it more acceptable to a woman to lose her husband to a man than it is to lose her husband to a woman? Would it be harder for a woman to stay married to a husband not sexually interested in her because he is gay, or not sexually interested in her because she no longer looks like a centerfold model? If a man can leave a woman because he is interested in men more than women, then the same can be said for a man that is more interested in women who could be in centerfolds than women who show the marks of having borne children. What is the difference? It seems like some are saying that repudiating vows is more acceptable in one case than in another. I am not understanding that.

  91. Ken F (aka Tweed) wrote:

    It sounded like you thought a marriage based only on obligation would be terrible. But I think you meant being married to a gay man would be terrible.

    Marriage based on obligation *under those circumstances*. I.e., married to a gay man. Not because I dislike gay men, I just do not want to be married to one.

    Read what josh wrote about the ‘Was any of this even real’? I have felt that way under difference circumstances. It is awful.

  92. @ Ken F (aka Tweed):
    As for the rest of your thought, I think you are just not coming from the same place. I see disinterest based on sexual preference as an innate thing. I see disinterest based on looks as a shallow thing. It’s not that it’s an awesome thing for a man to abandon his wife (although in maes story and the one I know of, the husband was cheating and the wife left him. )

  93. so…..what is ‘conservative’? not according to an urban dictionary.

    what is the definition of ‘conservative?

    what is the dividing line between liberal and conservative?

  94. elastigirla wrote:

    what is the definition of ‘conservative?

    Conservatives are fundamentalists who haven’t lost the plot. 🙂 That’s a first pass.

    When I use the term, I’m usually referring to my view of the nature of the Bible and the way it is to be interpreted, which is the basis for every other doctrine and belief and practice that flows from that. I believe the original texts — which we do not have — are inerrant and inspired by the Holy Spirit. That strikes some people as silly, but that is just where I start my reasoning. The method in which they should be interpreted, then, is informed by that. The meaning of the text is determined by the grammar, the context, the author’s other works, the immediate context, the type of literature it is, etc. along with all of the rest of the Bible, and other things which I am not remembering this late at night. That’s one Baptist-y view, and once upon a time, Southern Baptists were permitted to have different opinions. 🙂

  95. Gram3 wrote:

    The meaning of the text is determined by the grammar, the context, the author’s other works, the immediate context, the type of literature it is, etc. along with all of the rest of the Bible, and other things which I am not remembering this late at night. That’s one Baptist-y view, and once upon a time, Southern Baptists were permitted to have different opinions.

    The original context is particularly important. I used to be in fundagelical camp and unawareness of this was the cause of many errors. They often rely on surface meanings of texts instead of the spirit of what it means. For example these verses:

    “But I do not allow a woman to teach or exercise authority over a man, but to remain quiet. 13 For it was Adam who was first [h]created, and then Eve. 14 And it was not Adam who was deceived, but the woman being deceived, fell into transgression. (1 Timothy 2)

    And He *said to them, “Whoever divorces his wife and marries another woman commits adultery against her; 12 and if she herself [f]divorces her husband and marries another man, she is committing adultery.” (Mark 10)

    If you take these passages in isolation and at face value, you arrive at the same conclusions as the Go$$$pel Corporation. They use this to clobber people and we see the fruits of this in John Piper’s teaching. But 1 Timothy 2 was written to counter the cult of Artimus because of one lady troubling the church. In Mark 10 Jesus was condemning men for disposing of one wife in order to marry to another. It was a practiced approved by Rabbinic misinterpretation which allowed men to be cruel and trade in his wife like a piece of trash (remember women were regarded as property then). So Jesus was upholding justice for these women. But men like Piper have turned these very words into one which has oppressed many women, which is the exact opposite of Jesus intention. He was not saying that divorce under circumstances is wrong.

    In addition, they ignore other passages which contradict their conclusions. For example I have heard many complementarians gravitate immediately to 1 Timothy 2 but ignore the case of Deborah, Huldah, Miriam, Phillip’s four daughters in the book of Acts and 1 Corinthians which implies that a woman can pray and even prophesy (which was an act of authority). So they make at least two errors: they cherry pick and isolate a verse and then they take it out of historical context.

  96. Gram3 wrote:

    Conservatives are fundamentalists who haven’t lost the plot.

    Gram3, you provide a good perspective on what a conservative fundamentalist Christian is. Certainly, at the foundation of conservative fundamentalism is a belief that the Bible is the inerrant, inspired Word of God. I would add that conservative fundamentals include a belief in a personal experience of the “new birth”, an encounter with the living Christ, which occurs when faith is placed (by free-will) in Christ as Savior and Lord. Conservative fundamentals would also include belief in the Trinity (God in 3 persons, co-eternal & co-equal), the divinity of Jesus, the virgin birth, substitutionary atonement of Jesus for sinners (general atonement, not limited atonement), and the physical resurrection and bodily return of Christ. Some of these might sound extreme or radical to many 21st century Christians, but I believe they have been at the core of orthodox Christianity for the past 2,000 years.

  97. Lea wrote:

    I want to say i did not mean to minimize love, in all this talk of sex. Sex is much easier to come by than every day love, with someone who understands you. That’s the goal. IMO.

    I want to apologize for causing confusion by loading one post with two topics. I made it sound like I thought you were doing that, which I knew you weren’t; that part was supposed to be a response to a more general issue in evangelicalism.

    As to your point here, I absolutely agree. For the first thing, for gay men at least, well, we have an app for that (anonymous hook ups just aren’t something I desire, but obviously there’s a significant market for such an app). For true love, it’s more difficult to find – but I suspect that’s true for many straight people as well. Anyhow, that is what I hope to find some day, if possible.

  98. ZechZav wrote:

    They use this to clobber people and we see the fruits of this in John Piper’s teaching. But 1 Timothy 2 was written to counter the cult of Artimus because of one lady troubling the church.

    Oh, yes, I have written quite a lot about inconsistent use of the method of interpretation and Clobber Verses, especially in 1 Timothy 2. They switch from “literal” in “I do not allow a woman to teach or usurp authority over a man” to all-over-the-map-but-no-way-literal for “saved by childbirth.” I once spent the better part of an afternoon reading the best of Complementarian scholarship on “saved through childbirth.” The only thing that it does *not* mean is what it literally says.

    As you point out, the cult of Artemis provides the key to understanding a lot of the seemingly odd things that Paul writes to Timothy, including the “saved through childbirth/childbearing.” But, that would ruin their argument-by-assertion in 1 Timothy 2. The thing is, unless the Order if Creation is *assumed* first, it is not found in the Creation narrative in Genesis 1-2.

    They tried to ground male hierarchy in 1 Corinthians 11:3 via ESS, but they cannot do that any more. They cannot say that the reason women may not teach or exercise authority over males is that Eve was dehavceived because Paul used Eve as a type of deceived *church members including males* at Corinth in 2 Corinthians. That was before 1 Timothy. Context, context, context.

    That is why I have said that CBMW is not conservative but radical. It has an agenda that is not derived from the text but puts its ideas into the text, as in ESS and other things like the awful interpretation of Genesis 3:16 that teaches men that women’s hearts are set against them. Toxic lies.

    The first thing for these men to do LAST SUMMER was to repent of the false teaching of the Eternal Subordination of the Son that ***they propagated for three decades*** and all the harm done from that. They refused to do that. Now, a year later, these men and those who sat silent all those years presume to tell the world where the lines of orthodoxy lie.

  99. @ Gram3:

    “I believe the original texts — which we do not have — are inerrant and inspired by the Holy Spirit.”
    ++++++++++++++++

    inerrant in what sense?

    i think you would be one of the relative few in this world who would have a well-thought out answer to that.

  100. @ Gram3:
    @ ZechZav:
    @ Max:
    +++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++

    so…. i wonder….. am i conservative?

    i don’t disagree with anything you’re saying. i may understand inerrant differently. i’m quite sure i come to a few different interpretive conclusions than you.

    but… does conservative necessarily mean we have to come to the same conclusions?

    i’m wondering if this word doesn’t mean what we think it means.

  101. i’m bothered by how “conservative” and “liberal” have become insults being lobbed back & forth. (not amongst present company — at least i don’t think so).

    bothered by how it is weaponized, and how mean and bratty it makes people. how evil it can make people. people should be better than this, instead of resorting to this kind of a food fight. A food fight which costs people careers and reputations and relationships. and safety. silly. pathetic.

    when really, i think we believe the same things. the core things. the most important things.

    is homosexuality the dividing line? is this what makes someone conservative or liberal?

    if so, ….. why??? why does it all hinge on this?

    i’m beginning to think this is a grand deception. a grand, grand strategic monstrous snafu of a distraction. on a spiritual level.

  102. what i really mean is why does friend or foe, right or wrong, saved or unsaved hinge on homosexuality?

    a few decades ago it hinged on a literal interpretation of Genesis. A baptist OT professor wrote a book, lost his job, his church, his friends, his home, had explosives thrown on his front porch, had to have police escorts for his kids over this.

    a few decades from now chances are it will be something else.

    why does it all come down to one issue? when we all agree on the most important things. and could fuse together with our energy, and love, and resources….

    the trajectory of my thoughts and questions here is not as the crow flies.

  103. elastigirl wrote:

    is homosexuality the dividing line? is this what makes someone conservative or liberal?

    There has been a huge shift in recent years at least outside the church. Many conservatives have changed or modified their position to a more libertarian belief of live and let live. This has now opened up a lot of territory for a number of gays I know to shift right in their beliefs. As to your question I dare say that within another generation it may be irrelevant.

    Outside of politics and labels I would start with the general idea that liberals have a high degree of openness and are often proponents of change and conservatives have a high degree of conscientiousness and are proponents of order and preserving that which works. There is a strong need for both. In a former technology business we had two camps that roughly fit these two categories. We sometimes had heated debates but deep down we respected each other because we knew too much change would destabilize the business and no change would lead to obsolescence. Those were some very revealing and rewarding discussions but to an outsider they may have thought the business was at risk of splitting up. Contrast that experience with authoritarian driven group-think within a former church I attended and you will understand why I left, it was very stifling.

  104. elastigirl wrote:

    a few decades ago it hinged on a literal interpretation of Genesis. A baptist OT professor wrote a book, lost his job, his church, his friends, his home, had explosives thrown on his front porch, had to have police escorts for his kids over this.

    This is absolutely awful. I have often sensed a peer pressure mentality with church leaders and signed-up members. When a UK Baptist minister made a personal statement that he supported gay marriage, there was an outrage across the fundeglical community. The “celibate gay” ministry I was involved with jumped on the bandwagon and made an official statement that they stand with the traditional evangelical view. It sounded more like “let’s tow the party line!” I did wonder if they were partly motivated to make such a loud statement because they wanted to ensure that they continued receiving funds and speaking engagements.

    Incidentally, the aforementioned Sam Allberry is appearing with CJ Mahaney next year with T4G…after speaking out on homosexuality in many places!!!

  105. Ken F (aka Tweed) wrote:

    I agree with that part. There are a lot of things we must do in life that we don’t want to do. Once a man starts a family he has an obligation to stick with that family. I don’t see why a man should be able to so easily back out of such an obligation for being attracted to another man rather than to another woman. What difference does it make at that point? Unless there was some kind of abuse or illegal activity going on, I tend to think a person who enters into such an obligation should suck it up and meet the obligation.

    I’m going to flatly disagree with this, and it’s based on experience. I came >this< close to marrying a gay man. Back in the 1980s, it was thought that marriage would help *cough* straighten *cough* a man up. And this guy was quite the catch, one of the nicest people you could ever meet. He did and still does have a crowd around him.

    We broke up and I took it very hard and it took a long time to get over it. What helped was reading somewhere that I deserved to have someone who loved me as a woman, not someone who felt pressured into marrying because that was what he was told to do. I know that sounds simple, but seriously, back in the mid to late 1980s, that was just downright revelatory, because it gave me, a woman, permission to be loved as a woman, not because I was some sort of ideal or goal.

    I don’t think you can blame people who get divorces because one spouse figures out they never should have been in an opposite-sex marriage to start out with. And, sometimes staying together for the sake of the family isn’t the right thing to do. I often wonder how my life would have been different had my father divorced my mother when I was 14. He didn’t after my mom tried to kill herself and ended up in a hospital for seven weeks. He stayed with her for another 39 years, until he died.

  106. elastigirl wrote:

    a few decades ago it hinged on a literal interpretation of Genesis. A baptist OT professor wrote a book, lost his job, his church, his friends, his home, had explosives thrown on his front porch, had to have police escorts for his kids over this.
    a few decades from now chances are it will be something else.

    It still is over literal interpretations of Genesis, granted, without the bombs and suchlike, but people are losing their jobs over it.

    Bryan College made its professors sign a statement saying they endorse a young earth creationist view. A number of professors left rather than compromising their beliefs (some believed in theistic evolution).

    Bethel College in Indiana came up with a statement requiring professors to adhere to the idea of a special creation of Adam and one of their popular professors left.

    You can get fired from Wheaton College for straying from the creationist line.

    One of my friends talks about how human beings seem to want and desire to have in groups and out groups. Kind of like trash talking that football team on the other side of the state, except it has more serious implications. I’d just point out that Jesus, who is supposed to be the exemplar of Christians, crossed all those boundaries. I like to point out that he ate with prostitutes, tax collectors and other notorious sinners. It’s also true that he ate with the righteous and upright (some of whom would get scandalized by acts like a woman washing Jesus’ feet with her tears and drying them with her hair). But the point here is that Christ crossed the boundaries of the expected. A Roman centurion came to him and asked for healing for his servant. Jesus didn’t send him away because he was a symbol of the occupying army, he healed the servant. Jesus talked to a Samaritan woman at a well, and Samaritans were pretty much hated in those days.

    I have to remember all the time that Jesus crossed boundaries and not to wall myself up into my own group and think I and the people I hang with have all the answers. Because we don’t. Just something to think about.

  107. @ ZechZav:

    “The “celibate gay” ministry I was involved with jumped on the bandwagon and made an official statement that they stand with the traditional evangelical view.”
    +++++++++++++++++++++

    and what automatically makes “traditional” the morally and ethically right thing to champion?

    what automatically makes “conservative” the morally and ethically right thing to champion?

    why do these 2 words have so much power with christians? power to not get fired? power to not jeopardize your reputations and revenue? power to win?

    am i off to think that the essence of these words means “we don’t like change”? there’s nothing inherently right or moral or ethical or laudable about fear of change.

    why is this the hill to die on? *especially when nothing is changing about the most important things, the things that matter the most.*

    i consider that ministry you describe as having sold their soul. and for what? money, power, and influence.

    yeah, that sounds like Jesus alright.

  108. @ Muslin, fka Dee Holmes:

    isn’t Jesus great?!

    “I have to remember all the time that Jesus crossed boundaries and not to wall myself up into my own group and think I and the people I hang with have all the answers. Because we don’t.”
    +++++++++++++

    yes, very wise words, there.

    but don’t you think kindness always wins? (which wouldn’t preclude tough love) don’t you think we can at least say kindness is always the answer?

    i’ve thought it through a lot. (but maybe i’ve missed something)

  109. i know i’m all-too present a commenter right now. but, can’t sleep. and a pebble in my shoe of cognitive dissonance is having its night of reckoning.

    another thought to throw in the swirly mix.

    i think everyone is mix of conservative and liberal. i don’t know anyone who is purely one thing or another. in fact, i think that would be mentally unbalanced.

    we all fall in unique & various conservative spots, and fall in other unique and various liberal spots. (not that i’m all that clear on what either *truly* means)

    amongst those who call themselves conservative, there is a certain amount of tolerance of different perspectives, methods, and conclusions.

    so again i have to rephrase my question (& apologize for repeating myself). why is a person’s perspective on homosexuality THE deciding factor for what badge they are slapped with? a badge of validity or invalidity, qualification or disqualification.

    there is nothing in Gram’s and Max’s comments above (re: what is conservative) that i don’t agree with. i probably see inerrant in a different light. and some of my interpretive conclusions may be different. only one of those conclusions has to do with my perspective on LGBTQ.

    Why is it only that one that matters?

    it makes me think these words conservative and liberal as used in christian culture don’t mean much, except in a political sense for political advantage (& personal advantage).

    (footnote: i don’t feel invalidated or disqualified by Gram3 or Max. but i’d never be on Denny Burk’s christmas card list)

    [sorry again for so many iterations, here]

  110. elastigirl wrote:

    why is a person’s perspective on homosexuality THE deciding factor for what badge they are slapped with? a

    I don’t know that it is for everyone. There are lots of people who seemingly like to draw lines. That’s one of them for some. Some will draw it at women as pastors…others women as deacons! Some draw at yec. Some draw it other places.

    I agree with you that we are often all a mix, which is why there should be leeway for people who have different opinions.

  111. Some persons have asked why do some people feel so negative! about sexual issues that it reaches such a level of importance to them? Flip side: why do some people feel so positive! about sexual issues that it reaches such a level of importance to them? My idea: something personal, not just religious.

    Why do I feel/think the way I do? I would like to cite scripture, but that is not the core of the issue. My father was gay, or if not he at least gave an incredible performance of being gay, while even so being married with kids. There was no divorce. I cannot be disinterested and totally objective. I also have first hand observation of two other cases of this phenomenon, one where the female was straight in my immediate family (is it that common or is there something wrong with us?) and one where the male was straight and is now a friend of one of my kids. So, two divorces and one non-divorce.

    Don’t even think about trying to tell me that neutrality is a reasonable position on all this if you have never personally been impacted by any of it. Neutrality is not possible. Reason is possible. Compassion is possible. Neutrality is not, nor should it be.

  112. elastigirl wrote:

    i think everyone is mix of conservative and liberal. i don’t know anyone who is purely one thing or another. in fact, i think that would be mentally unbalanced.

    I am mix, or something other . . .. 😉

  113. elastigirl wrote:

    but don’t you think kindness always wins? (which wouldn’t preclude tough love) don’t you think we can at least say kindness is always the answer?

    Funny you should ask that. I wish I could say that kindness is the answer, but there are some groups out there whose ethos includes genocide of other races, ethnic groups, religions, etc. I don’t think kindness works with those guys. In short (and Dee, I’ll totally understand if you take this down), I’m all for punching Nazis.

  114. Muslin, fka Dee Holmes wrote:

    I have to remember all the time that Jesus crossed boundaries and not to wall myself up into my own group and think I and the people I hang with have all the answers. Because we don’t. Just something to think about.

    This is the Jesus I have come to know after disengaging from the evagelical machine.

  115. @ Gram3:
    I got up this morning still thinking about what “Conservative Fundamentalism” means to me.

    The word “fundamentalist” has taken on a negative connotation in America … thanks to certain religious wackos and extremists. But there are certain fundamentals of our faith that all Christians should agree on if we are to exercise Biblical fundamentalism (Gram3 and I commented on those in upstream comments).

    So, how should these fundamentals play out in a daily walk with Jesus? Several years ago, I jotted down some passages of Scripture in the fly-leaf of my Bible that I consider fundamentals to remember as I go about living my faith in flesh & bone:

    1. God is love; He loves even me (1 John 4:8)

    2. I can be reconciled to God only through my faith in Christ (2 Corinthians 5:19)

    3. I have spiritual life (now and eternal) only through a relationship with Christ (1 John 5:12)

    4. Jesus forgives me of my sins ‘when’ I confess them; repentance is necessary (1 John 1:9)

    5. I trust only Scripture for Truth (not man’s interpretation of it), allowing Scripture to instruct and perfect me (2 Timothy 3:16-17)

    6. Love one another (John 13:34-35)

    7. My life, mission, and message should be centered on the Great Commission; every believer is in ministry (Matthew 28:19-20)

    I suppose there are other fundamentals of Christian faith, but these are the ones that kept coming up for me during a season of reflection on this. Call me a Fundamentalist or even a Conservative Fundamentalist, but this is where I stand.

  116. @ Daisy:

    Thank you for the link to the facebook convo. It was fascinating to say the least! I gotta’ be up front though and say that my sympathies were for the student; he was my dog in that fight. He got worked over pretty good by a gang of academics who do it for a living (and they’re good at it).

    Hopefully though, he wasn’t bamboozled enough to knuckle under and cry uncle. I don’t do facebook. Did the kid stay on his feet even with a bloody nose and a cut eye? If so, the kid had balls to go up against a pack of pit bulls with PhDs.
    He obviously raised their hackles or they wouldn’t have wasted any bytes on him.

    I have the same respect and admiration for you Daisy, the way you stand up for your convictions speaks of character.

  117. Max wrote:

    5. I trust only Scripture for Truth (not man’s interpretation of it), allowing Scripture to instruct and perfect me (2 Timothy 3:16-17)

    I’ve been thinking about this lately. At the time time Paul wrote those words, “All scripture” included the OT, and possibly some of the epistles in circulation (it’s not clear exactly what he means by “all scripture”). He therefore could not have been referring to the completed NT because it was not collected by then (it was not even fully written by then). At one point the early church must have relied on traditions passed down both verbally and in writing (see 2 Thes 2:15). And then some time later it became fashionable to rely on scripture alone without regard to tradition. From what I’ve been able to determine, that kind of thinking started only around 500 years ago. And I cannot find any verses in the Bible that say that the Bible alone is sufficient. Protestants should be able to agree on the “clear” meaning of scripture, but we don’t. With the hundreds, if not thousands, of Protestant denominations disagreeing on the meaning of scripture, I’m wondering if this is a good standard for interpretation. Maybe there is some value in what many call “apostolic tradition.” I would not be questioning this if I did not see so much disagreement among Protestants.

  118. Lea wrote:

    As for the rest of your thought, I think you are just not coming from the same place.

    Yes, I think that is true. I am coming at it from the perspective of 26 years of marriage to only one woman, and having now raised three adult children (no grandchildren yet). By now our marriage is much deeper than just sexual interest.

  119. @ Max:

    “I trust only Scripture for Truth (not man’s interpretation of it), allowing Scripture to instruct and perfect me (2 Timothy 3:16-17)”
    +++++++++++++++++++

    thank you for taking the time to think about this, Max. these are great verses. great things for daily living.

    a question: I would guess Nadia Bolz-Webber and Jen Hatmaker (their names were just on the surface of my thoughts) agree with you 100%. I would guess these are also the fundamentals of their daily lives.

    are they conservative fundamentalists?

    a question: you say ‘I trust only Scripture for Truth (not man’s interpretation of it), allowing Scripture to instruct and perfect me’. but isn’t your very reading of it your interpretation of it?

    you know that verse, “for now we see through a glass dimly” (1 Cor 13) — i think we all understand through our interpretation, none if which is pure and unfiltered.

  120. Ken F (aka Tweed) wrote:

    At the time time Paul wrote those words, “All scripture” included the OT, and possibly some of the epistles in circulation (it’s not clear exactly what he means by “all scripture”)

    Paul’s “Bible” was primarily the Old Testament – he often preached from selected passages of the OT, pointing to Jesus as fulfillment of Scripture regarding the Messiah. The words Paul spoke – the New Testament in motion – complemented OT teachings on faith and life for God’s children. Beyond the prophecies about Jesus, the OT also provides counsel “useful for teaching the faith and correcting error, for re-setting the direction of a man’s life and training him in good living” (2 Timothy 3:16-17 Phillips).

    Ken F (aka Tweed) wrote:

    At one point the early church must have relied on traditions passed down both verbally and in writing

    Jesus attempted to put the focus back on Scripture when He said “For you ignore God’s law and substitute your own tradition” (Mark 7:8).

    Ken F (aka Tweed) wrote:

    hundreds, if not thousands, of Protestant denominations disagreeing on the meaning of scripture

    There are over 30,000 Christian denominations and organizations worldwide. Most were founded on the particular teachings and traditions of men. Jesus told us not to do that! Do any of them have a corner on the Truth? Or do all of them speak Truth, but simply expressed in different ways through belief and practice? David Mitchell once said “Truth is singular. It’s ‘versions’ are mis-truths.”

    Ken F (aka Tweed) wrote:

    I cannot find any verses in the Bible that say that the Bible alone is sufficient

    While 2 Timothy 3:16-17 suggests that, I think Proverbs 19 speaks to the sufficiency of God’s Word, whether it be OT teaching, writings of the apostles, or the words written in red.

    “The law of the LORD is perfect, converting the soul: the testimony of the LORD is sure, making wise the simple. The statutes of the LORD are right, rejoicing the heart: the commandment of the LORD is pure, enlightening the eyes. The fear of the LORD is clean, enduring for ever: the judgments of the LORD are true and righteous altogether. More to be desired are they than gold, yea, than much fine gold: sweeter also than honey and the honeycomb. Moreover by them is thy servant warned: and in keeping of them there is great reward.” (Proverbs 19: 7-11)

    That’s sufficient enough for me!

  121. Darlene wrote:

    Muff, I suppose then that we would have to render the word fornication meaningless. Yes, we will have to agree to disagree… amicably, of course.

    Not at all Darlene, file the word in the folder that makes the most sense of meaning and connotation for you and I’ll do the same for me. And if the folders are not the same? So what?, that is what amicable is all about, no need for armed conflict.

    Darlene wrote:

    By the way, I don’t place myself in that category of “Conservative”. I long ago abandoned the Fundagelical Camp.

    Great comment!
    Just replace the category “Conservative” with liberal/progressive, and I too defy categorization. Trust me, some of my views have also gotten me in dutch with the liberal/progressive camp. Their more strident elements will brook no dissent either, and are just as demanding of conformity as the so-called “Conservative” wing.

  122. elastigirl wrote:

    you know that verse, “for now we see through a glass dimly” (1 Cor 13) — i think we all understand through our interpretation, none if which is pure and unfiltered.

    This is why I think we need the communal opinion of the church on matters, and not just individual interpretation of scripture.

  123. elastigirl wrote:

    inerrant in what sense?

    Briefly, my view is that the original texts were without error because they were the inspired word of the Holy Spirit who cannot lie. The text has a human audience and the Holy Spirit inspired human authors to write it, so the text has the forms and features of other human literature and should be interpreted according to the type of literature it is. That is the short form of my reasoning. As I said, everyone has to start their reasoning chain somewhere, and God’s revelation of himself in his written word is where I start mine. Others start elsewhere or view the Bible differently, and I can understand that. Jesus does not need a book, and he certainly is *not* a book! But the Bible is a great gift of revelation to us, IMO.

  124. @ Lea:

    yes, you are right. i’m thinking, though, that in the ‘conservative camp’ one can affirm female pastors and deacons and still be deemed a member in good standing by many a conservative. however as soon as one affirms LGTQ, they are expelled by all.

  125. @ elastigirl:
    You pose good questions, elastigirl.

    During a long journey of faith, I’ve wrestled with certain Scriptures and man’s interpretation of them. During those seasons, I turned to the Holy Spirit to guide me, praying earnestly to discover and understand Truth. Now in the last chapter of my life, and tiring of wrestling matches with men, I rest on what has been deposited in my “knower” … what I know, I can’t un-know; what I see, I can’t un-see. I may be wrong about some things, so I’ll just wait for eternity to set me straight unless I get a revelation before then. I’ve tried my best to put it all before Jesus and rely on the Holy Spirit to teach me. I suppose that I have let theology and tradition get in the way of hearing God clearly on some things, but I have endeavored to steer clear of personal interpretations. I just don’t know what else to do; I’ll talk it over with Jesus in the bye-and-bye.

  126. @ Gram3:

    i think i agree. it’s taxing my brain to run the calculations…. but i think i agree.

    a God-inspired nutbread recipe — it will be a good recipe, that has good flavor and texture. but is no basis for anything than good eating. (although there will always be people who will find rules for life based on “fold, don’t overmix”.)

    a God-inspired set of thoughts on human beings and God having a friendship? the basis for a lifetime of exploration conversation deep into the night with a candle and beverages of choice. (and cigars) (and cheese)

  127. elastigirl wrote:

    i’m bothered by how “conservative”

    FWIW, I use it only to describe where I am coming from and to set my remarks in context.

  128. elastigirl wrote:

    and what automatically makes “traditional” the morally and ethically right thing to champion? what automatically makes “conservative” the morally and ethically right thing to champion?

    I hope that no one champions a POV for the sake of a POV. Groups have confessions or creeds or statements of faith. Over time, things generally start to change. That’s just the nature of groups. So then there are reactions to that, and then reactions to that and then reformations, and then counter-reformations. Ideally, people of integrity voluntarily resign when their personal views no longer align with the institution, and, ideally any benefits accrued would be portable so that it would be easier for all to part company amicably with everyone’s consciences intact.

  129. Ken F (aka Tweed) wrote:

    Lea wrote:
    As for the rest of your thought, I think you are just not coming from the same place.

    Yes, I think that is true. I am coming at it from the perspective of 26 years of marriage to only one woman, and having now raised three adult children (no grandchildren yet). By now our marriage is much deeper than just sexual interest.

    I don’t know if you meant it to but this sounded really braggy.

    But you clearly aren’t understanding me, so i suppose we should just drop it.

  130. ___

    SexWars: “Present Proper Positional Calvinism, Perhaps?”

    hmmm…

    In the past the Calvinist religious movement has traditionally and systematically protected itself from feminism, now apparently it seeks to protect itself from the likes of homosexual incursion as well.

    huh?

    The Danvers Statement was apparently created by Calvinists because of the alarm of feminism and their churches were beginning to abandon concern for biblical gender roles on a wholesale basis.

    The Nashville Statement however, has apparently been crafted, created by Calvinists because their local churches may be guilty of abandoning concern and calling rights for biblical sexuality on an landmark social wholesale basis.

    What?

    The perceived threat of homosexuality is being called judgmental, and the perceived danger of failing to reach the burgeoning numbers of homosexual persons inhabiting metropolitan areas with the truth of the gospel, and the growing possibility of their biblical exclusion from the kingdom of God due to their behavior and actions is perceived as very real.

    Holding to strict biblical teachings on homosexuality will be extremely costly, but Calvinists believe that the price they will pay is less that the social and moral ramifications in respect to the harm to the local church body of believers should homosexuality find social acceptance within and inundate the local body of believers.

    Calling homosexuality a biblical sin has drawn a line in the sand of biblical sexual socially acceptable behavior within the local Calvinist body of believers, and Christ followers. No longer is their any doubt of the stance subscribing Calvinist churches will take positionally on this important and vital social issue.

    The announcement has been made that the homosexual is still respected as a individual and welcome in a Calvinist church, but they must now understand that the Nashville Statement subscribing local body of believers are now in a position to verbally confront and call in question this type of biblically unacceptable and harmful behavior within these Christian local bodies of Christ followers should it be discovered within their midsts.

    This (i.e. The Nashville Statement) is kind of a religious perl harbor, yeah? Will defacement and enraged pillaging be the sad return, or will those the arrow was ultimately intended to strike stand tall? Does their future truly lie ‘beyond’ the Calvinist road?

    *

    For if these things are in you and abound: faith, virtue, knowledge, temperance, patience, godliness, fraternal fraternity, charity; they will make you neither a floor mat to be walked on nor unfruitful in your honest pursuit of the knowledge of our Lord & Savior Jesus Christ.

    But unstable individuals and seducers shall wax worse, deceiving, and being deceived. But please continue to be secure in the things in which the Bible has instructed you, knowing full well of their infinite weight and value, understanding that the discarding of which brings great folly…

    ATB

    Sòpy
    ____
    Faith Hill’s song : “Where I am there you’ll be” sung by Amy Connolly on the X Factor.
    https://m.youtube.com/watch?v=qDcc94FengI
    Elton John – “Don’t Let The Sun Go Down On Me”
    https://m.youtube.com/watch?v=mBGb5xNK9lU
    Paul McCartney “The Long And Winding Road/My Love” Live 2009
    https://m.youtube.com/watch?v=JFNaOm6U5n8
    Paul McCartney “Golden Slumbers/Carry That Weight/The End” Live-1989/90
    https://m.youtube.com/watch?v=L7BegrjW9bs

    ;~)

  131. Muslin, fka Dee Holmes wrote:

    Jesus, who is supposed to be the exemplar of Christians, crossed all those boundaries. I like to point out that he ate with prostitutes, tax collectors and other notorious sinners. It’s also true that he ate with the righteous and upright (some of whom would get scandalized by acts like a woman washing Jesus’ feet with her tears and drying them with her hair). But the point here is that Christ crossed the boundaries of the expected. A Roman centurion came to him and asked for healing for his servant. Jesus didn’t send him away because he was a symbol of the occupying army, he healed the servant. Jesus talked to a Samaritan woman at a well, and Samaritans were pretty much hated in those days.

    I have to remember all the time that Jesus crossed boundaries and not to wall myself up into my own group and think I and the people I hang with have all the answers. Because we don’t. Just something to think about.

    So very well said with great illustrations.

  132. Andrew Jones has been posting on Facebook as he reads Kevin Giles’ book, *The Rise and Fall of the Complementarian Doctrine of the Trinity*. You may want to track his series. I’ve known Andrew for over 20 years, and find his perspective an important one.

    Here’s his first post, *Who put the Arian in ComplementARIAN?”

    https://www.facebook.com/permalink.php?story_fbid=10155015703749053&id=509114052

    To give it some historical context, Andrew goes back to the “emerging ministry” movement and Young Leaders Network in the mid-1990s when Mark Driscoll was still part of it. Andrew has been a witness to the beginnings of the Neo-Calvinist movement, Acts 29, challenges to Mark Driscoll on character issues and abuse, etc. That’s why he can say this, and it takes on more meaning:

    “Both Giles and many of us during the emerging church years who saw problems with this teaching, and its absence in the historical church creeds, were called “evangelical feminists” by the New Calvinists. But now, apparently, we were actually, as it turns out . . not full of it.”

    I’ll post the link to the second article in the series later.

  133. Here’s the link to the second post in Andrew Jones’ series on Kevin Giles’ book on the ESS/Trinity heresy: “The Women Who Blogged and Brought a Heresy to its Knees.” Wherein he gives shout-outs to the indomitable Deebs of TWW. Also worth noting, he has personal connections with Dan Wallace of the Evangelical Theological Society, which became wrapped up in this theological debate in 2016, and he links (once again) to TWW posts about that event.

    https://www.facebook.com/permalink.php?story_fbid=10155017648289053&id=509114052

  134. brad/futuristguy wrote:

    Andrew Jones … gives shout-outs to the indomitable Deebs of TWW

    I like this line from Jones’ post: “The Wartburg Watch, a superb blog written by two wonderful women theoblogians Dee and Deb.:

    Theoblogians!

  135. Lea wrote:

    I don’t know if you meant it to but this sounded really braggy.

    Well, that certainly was not my intent. I was just trying to fill you in on where I am coming from. Earlier in this thread I had indicated my wife and I have been through quite a few challenges and both of us found security in knowing we could trust each others’ vows. My experiences bias me toward keeping one’s word and not easily giving up on a relationship. My wife and I have not experienced infidelity, abuse, or destructive addictions in our marriage, so I am sure that limits my ability to understand those who have. I hope this does not somehow disqualify me from weighing in on topics such as these.

    I don’t think you and I misunderstand each other so much. Rather, I think we have different experiences that give us different opinions. I hope that is still allowed on TWW.

  136. Muslin, fka Dee Holmes wrote:

    I’m going to flatly disagree with this, and it’s based on experience.

    I hope it is ok to disagree here. It sounds like you made an outstanding decision in spite of the pressure you were under to do otherwise.

  137. okrapod wrote:

    This is why I think we need the communal opinion of the church on matters, and not just individual interpretation of scripture.

    And, yet, even communal opinion is just opinion and does not guarantee we have it right . . . as God sees it.

  138. Mae wrote:

    She went for an annulment, rather then a divorce, as she felt the marriage was a fraud. She also sought and got, full custody of her girls.

    I’m thinking that it would be reasonable to expect the same outcome if she had found straight porn and discovered he had a girlfriend. It’s deception and infidelity either way. To make it more acceptable when a spouse has a same-sex affair does not make sense to me. But it seems that this is the way our culture is trending right now.

  139. Bridget wrote:

    And, yet, even communal opinion is just opinion and does not guarantee we have it right . . . as God sees it.

    I agree. Sometimes the church is wrong. As a general rule, however, I think it has the better possibility of being more correct than the myriad of individual interpretations. Talking probabilities here. Perhaps I am more comfortable with this idea because medicine operates on probabilities, not individual and idiosyncratic ideas. I really have trouble with the idea that my understand or reasoning is all that apt to be comprehensive or that the Spirit tells me truth while telling others something else. That just does not seem probable to me.

  140. Ken F (aka Tweed) wrote:

    My experiences bias me toward keeping one’s word and not easily giving up on a relationship

    Perhaps. On the other hand, if one has entered into a toxic marriage, either because it is a gay/straight marriage or because of any reason that would violate the biblical expectations of marriage, and the situation is destructive to everybody involved. would it not perhaps be better to terminate it and then go set up a better situation for both the adults and the children. How well do children survive and thrive in toxic families? In my experience, not well at all.

    If there is biblical reasoning to validate divorce when one is a believer and the other not, within the limits of what Paul was talking about, then is a divorce based on a gay/straight dynamic also biblically approved? When Jesus noted that from the beginning humanity was created male and female and ‘for this cause’ -marriage–did he mean specifically heterosexual monogamy? It may be, because he want on to discuss ‘eunuchs’ who would not marry-the condition of being eunuch pertaining to sexuality. So is a gay/straight marriage contrary to what Jesus was saying about the institution of marriage in the beginning?

    If you says that yes it is contrary, then should one divorce upon realizing that one of the partners was gay? Or would one say that in Jesus description of how God made humanity in the beginning as relating to marriage only meant anatomy and not sexual functioning? This matters.

    I do not know why my parents did not divorce, but had I been in their situation I would have. With lighting speed. For the sake of the children if for no other reason.

  141. @ brad/futuristguy:
    Thanks Brad for the shout out and to the Deebs for years of faithful blogging. Sorry my blog is parked in the garage right now but might come out in the near future so Facebook will do until then. As for Dan Wallace, my cousin of sorts, I am honored to be related but must insist that my own awful twisted heretical theology is fully mine and should not reflect badly on Dr Wallace in any way.

  142. okrapod wrote:

    Perhaps. On the other hand, if one has entered into a toxic marriage, either because it is a gay/straight marriage or because of any reason that would violate the biblical expectations of marriage, and the situation is destructive to everybody involved. would it not perhaps be better to terminate it and then go set up a better situation for both the adults and the children. How well do children survive and thrive in toxic families? In my experience, not well at all.

    I am with you on this. I don’t think there is a one-size-fits-all solution. Lots of factors come into play. I told my kids that marriage is hard enough even in good circumstances that no marriage is better than a bad marriage, and bad marriages are easy to get into (also that it’s easier to get into a bad marriage than out of one). What I tried to focus on with my comments on this thread is what seems like a different standard for spouses who leave for a same-sex relationship. I think you articulated my thoughts on this better than I did my own.

  143. @ Ken F (aka Tweed):
    Certainly you can disagree, you just didn’t seem to be addressing the actual point of disagreement? So it feels more like talking past each other. That’s all.

  144. okrapod wrote:

    the other hand, if one has entered into a toxic marriage, either because it is a gay/straight marriage or because of any reason that would violate the biblical expectations of marriage, and the situation is destructive to everybody involved. would it not perhaps be better to terminate it and then go set up a better situation for both the adults and the children.

    Indeed. Do not cling to a mistake just because you spent a long time making it. Sometimes it’s best to just call an audible.

  145. Lea wrote:

    you just didn’t seem to be addressing the actual point of disagreement

    I think I lost track of what the disagreement is. I was questioning what appears to me to be a double standard. And also that vows should not be discarded lightly. What point did I come across as arguing for?

  146. Andrew Jones wrote:

    . As for Dan Wallace, my cousin of sorts, I am honored to be related but must insist that my own awful twisted heretical theology is fully mine and should not reflect badly on Dr Wallace in any way.

    Please say *hi* to Dan from the Parsons. We were friends of his when we lived in Dallas.

  147. Ken F (aka Tweed) wrote:

    My experiences bias me toward keeping one’s word and not easily giving up on a relationship

    I doubt there’re many people commenting on this thread who believe n *easily* giving up on marriage. In fact, easy is rarely the issue at all. In fact, it is the difficulty some authoritative churches which will not allow a woman to divorce an abusive man. No one in their right mind would say that is *easily*giving up on a marriage.

    We are working on two stories at the moment which deal with difficult marriages in a couple of high profile situations. The pain and suffering experience by both women is profound.

    I think it is best to figure out that most people want marriages to work but sometimes their are situations that way beyond the typical disagreements of many marriages.

    I would appreciate it if you would point out one post in which the Deebs ever advocated ditching a marriage for the typical day to day issues. This blog focuses on abusive situations.

  148. dee wrote:

    I would appreciate it if you would point out one post in which the Deebs ever advocated ditching a marriage for the typical day to day issues. This blog focuses on abusive situations.

    Of course there are no instances in any of your posts where you have suggested anything like this. I’ve never questioned the Deebs’ judgement or conclusions in any posts on TWW.

    I think I just did a terrible job of making myself understood on a particular sub-thread that developed in the comments. The context of my comments was the man in Andy Stanley’s church that Okrapod highlighted. He apparently decided to abandon his wife for a man, and everyone seemed to be pretty much ok with that. I suggested that had he abandoned his wife for a smokin’ hot young woman that the reaction would have been different, which is a double standard. In the absence of abuse or some kind of other major issue, in my comments I questioned why this man’s actions seems to be so much more readily accepted than straight adultery. For the sake of his children, could he not find a way make the marriage work, or was his sexual desire the most important factor? There was no mention in the article about any abusive or illegal behavior associated with that marriage. So it seems ok to abandon a marriage when one is not sexually interested in the wife if (and only if) the third party is a man. I tried to express my disagreement with that way of thinking, but I did not do as good a job at is as either Okrapod ZechZav. I’ll tap out of this thread. I apologize to anyone I offended or triggered.

  149. Lea wrote:

    Do not cling to a mistake just because you spent a long time making it.

    What a great way to say something. I need to remember that.

  150. okrapod wrote:

    Lea wrote:
    Do not cling to a mistake just because you spent a long time making it.
    What a great way to say something. I need to remember that.

    I stole it from pinterest I think after a breakup. But I like it! It is very, very true.

  151. elastigirl wrote:

    @ Lea:

    yes, you are right. i’m thinking, though, that in the ‘conservative camp’ one can affirm female pastors and deacons and still be deemed a member in good standing by many a conservative. however as soon as one affirms LGTQ, they are expelled by all.

    I am not too sure that conservative churches allow pastors etc to affirm female pastors especially SBC conservative churches.

  152. @ mot:

    Assemblies of God does, of course. (although i observed a fair amount of contradiction) but affirm homosexuality and things change in how you’re viewed.

  153. @ Gram3:

    “I hope that no one champions a POV for the sake of a POV. Groups have confessions or creeds or statements of faith. Over time, things generally start to change. …

    Ideally, people of integrity voluntarily resign when their personal views no longer align with the institution, and, ideally any benefits accrued would be portable so that it would be easier for all to part company amicably with everyone’s consciences intact.”
    +++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++

    you say things so well. i like your ideally’s. unfortunately, i observe professional christians championing a point of view for the sake of their career, and standing with their peers.

    but this is old news.

    i dream of a church where revenue was not part of the equation.

  154. @ elastigirl:

    Interesting point. I never considered Assemblies of God to fit the pattern of what one usually considers conservative because don’t they have women preachers and don’t they have a rather relaxed attitude about divorce also? That does not fit the conservative pattern when I think of conservatism. I usually think of fundamentalist and holiness churches as conservative along with the stricter groups of baptists of near-fundamentalist stance.

    Probably there needs to be an agreed upon definition of what issues play into the idea of conservatism.

    I agree with mot in that I don’t think that conservative churches affirm women pastors.

  155. Andrew Jones noted some comments from a 2012 TWW post on “Complementarian Confusion at The Gospel Coalition.” Intriguing that we seem to have gone yet another five-year orbit around the Danvers Statement since then, with no real course corrections from TGC and similar networks.

    http://thewartburgwatch.com/2012/08/16/complementarian-confusion-at-the-gospel-coalition/#comment-56590

    Seems relevant to critiques of the Nashville Statement, so here are those first three comments on that post, starting with the one in that link.

    1. BRAD/FUTURISTGUY. I’ve used the term *complementary* since high school geometry, but I must say, something certainly doesn’t square up here about this 25-year-old neo-logism, *complementarianism*. I wish The Gospel Coalition as a whole would figure out what they officially mean by it – define it and describe its applications and ramifications – so it isn’t the current ishy-squishy unhelpful and seemingly judgmental concept. It seems some consider it a hair’s breadth away from a plank of true orthodoxy, so if it’s really that “core” to “biblical”/”gospel-centered” Christianity, then it’s legitimate to challenge them to say exactly what they mean.

    I for one am confused and cannot figure out their meaning. But I do know this. When you talk about a “closed system,” Deb, you’ve touched on a key issue. Any group that has such apparently stringent boundaries to keep “right” in and “wrong” out, but who talk in jargon and code that only insiders can truly understand, put themselves at risk of what Robert Jay Lifton described as “Loading the Language.” And that is #6 of the 8 classic criteria he identified as markers of “authoritarian cults.” It doesn’t mean they are a doctrinally heretical “cult.” But it does mean that their terms reduce complex problems to simplistic solutions, and condense categories into judgmental labels. It’s part of a system of “total thought control.” And thus, this issue should be taken as a warning sign to all.

    2. BRIDGET. Brad – You do realize that most churches that identify as Reformed” now use such language . . . that’s a wide warning. That’s not to say that I disagree with your warning.

    3. BRAD/FUTURISTGUY. Bridget … yes, I understand that, and it’s scary. And perhaps particularly I’ve seen it taking root within the younger Neo-Reformed/Neo-Puritan crowd, which makes it all the more crucial for the “elders” of The Gospel Coalition and other such networks and movements to specify what they mean and make course corrections while they still can, before this “internal culture war” becomes institutionalized.

    An “institution” has been sometimes been defined as an organization that lasts beyond two generations. This “complementarianism* question has not been clarified for one whole generation. If the term and all the issues stuck to it get transmitted with all that confusion intact into and past the so-called “young, reformed, and restless,” it will be institutionalized in these movements and thus, even harder to deal with a generation after them. And then, according to some thought on how to measure social change, it will take at least another generation after some significant change for such a significant clarification to get set as the new default. Here’s one of my favorite quotes for capturing that thought:

    “In the long run, what counts is how the next generation thinks. How far new ideas permeate culture is not measured just by attitude change during one generation, but by what is taken for granted in the next.” [~ Helen Haste in *The Sexual Metaphor: Men, Women, and the Thinking that Makes the Difference*, page 149]

    Also, when using the term “cult,” I try to be as clear and careful as possible – there is a distinction between sociological cults of the authoritarian kind that Lifton was studying when he conducted interviews with former prisoners of Maoist China in the 1950s, and our general understanding of anti-biblical cults based on doctrinal heresy. There is, however, an area of overlap between the two kinds. The warning was given to encourage those who most influence such movements to clarify where they stand in relation to these kinds of indicators, because there is a growing body of documented evidence online about various Christian churches, ministries, and networks that fit more than just criterion #6 of 8 as authoritarian cults.

    It’s a serious issue, not just some silly fuss over some little theological concept. When some are talking as if complementarianism is *required* to be considered gospel-centered, then it is exclusionary. Do they mean that non-complementarians are Christians or not? Or that they are simply “not gospel-centered”? Or …

  156. @ Gram3:

    once a person in a christian community described as ‘conservative’ supports gay marriage and , they are viewed with suspicion. opportunities dry up. relationships aren’t quite the same. lots of body language and facial expressions that indicate something has changed in how they are viewed.

    this is my observation and experience.

    so, expelled in that sense.

    of course, Denny Burke’s Nash Stat seems to declare such a person outside of christianity. no longer welcomed.

  157. Darlene wrote:

    That quote from Shawshank Redemption got me to thinking: what if the law declared homosexuality illegal and and with it came the death penalty. What if all citizens were required by law to report all such persons to the authorities? Would we as Christians be willing to hide and protect such persons from the authorities? I would see this as no different than the plight of the Jewish people who lived in the Nazi Regime.

    But I think I can guess what side the CBMW folks would come down on.

    Lining up to join the SS and volunteer for “Hygiene and Sanitation” or “Special Action Commandos”?

  158. brad/futuristguy wrote:

    Do they mean that non-complementarians are Christians or not? Or that they are simply “not gospel-centered”? Or …

    The Gospel Glitterati have made it quite clear that Complementarianism is a gospel issue. Both T4g and TgC have put Complementarianism into their otherwise limited doctrinal statement. Carl Trueman has remarked on this rather curious phenomenon where this particular secondary or tertiary issue is essential to both organizations where so many others are not even mentioned. There are several videos where Complementarianism and the Gospel are discussed at conferences over the years.

  159. okrapod wrote:

    Similarly I see residuals of some old cultural ideas coming to the surface. One hundred and fifty years is not that long. Old ideas never die, they may fade with time but they are not gone forever.

    As in the mythology of the Confederate States, Antebellum Paradise Gone with the Wind, and other aspects of Southern grievance culture stemming from the American Civil War and its immediate aftermath?

  160. elastigirl wrote:

    @ Gram3:

    once a person in a christian community described as ‘conservative’ supports gay marriage and , they are viewed with suspicion. opportunities dry up. relationships aren’t quite the same. lots of body language and facial expressions that indicate something has changed in how they are viewed.

    this is my observation and experience.

    so, expelled in that sense.

    of course, Denny Burke’s Nash Stat seems to declare such a person outside of christianity. no longer welcomed.

    Sadly what Burke and the writers of this document have done is something else someone must sign off in order to remain a part of their Boy’s Club.

  161. Muslin, fka Dee Holmes wrote:

    You can get fired from Wheaton College for straying from the creationist line.

    Your faculty life can be made miserable at a College which leans in the opposite vector direction too. Both are as Orwellian as Oceania and Eurasia.

  162. Muff Potter wrote:

    Your faculty life can be made miserable at a College which leans in the opposite vector direction too. Both are as Orwellian as Oceania and Eurasia.

    I knew a Marxist economics professor (tenured, even!) at the University of Texas at Austin back in the 1980s. Nobody disputed he wasn’t a good professor, because he was. But he was a Marxist, he was on hitlists of organizations trying to get rid of him. So it goes all over the place. UT-Austin was certainly not a liberal place in those days, if it ever was. In the 1980s, UT-Austin was known for its $4 billion endowment, not exactly a hallmark of a university toying with leftism.

    (Reminds me of someone who called me a leftist on Twitter last week. I laughed and replied, “I work for an evil too big to fail *bank*.”)

  163. elastigirl wrote:

    Denny Burke’s Nash Stat seems to declare such a person outside of christianity

    I suspect that the NS is a notice to academics, pastors, and elders who may be considering these issues to either stay quiet or stay on message, and the NS is the Received Word on these issues just as Danvers has been the Received Word on Gender Roles. That’s what I meant when I listed some cities where prominent conservative seminaries are located and where uncomfortable discussions between seminarians and professors may be taking place. Or between professors. Consider how many female seminary professors lost their jobs after Danvers.

    At the church level, I think that church covenants will be modified or whatever other documents bind members. I imagine there will be resolutions at the SBC and overtures at the PCA. Those will all filter back to the individual churches in teaching. Once the revisions are made to church covenants and teaching is done,then members will be subject to church discipline for disagreeing with the Nashville Statement, at least for church leaders and teachers.

    On a personal level, it is difficult to say how anyone would react. Affirming homosexual behavior might result in being shunned, and it certainly would cause some consternation and confusion and a desire to continue the conversation with me to find out what happened to me. I do not think denying that SSA is sinful in itself would be particularly controversial with the conservative *older* people we know who have several grandchildren and sometimes great-grandchildren. The Calvinistas in the 20-40 group is another matter.

    The conservative Baptist and Presby/Bible/Reformed churches have always affirmed that sexual practice and even lust outside of marriage (between one man and one woman) is sinful. That is not news, and as far as I know, nothing is likely to change. That’s how I read the text, and I think the NS guys have gone beyond the text for some reason.

  164. @ Gram3:

    Thank you, Gram3, for the effort you put into interacting. It’s been helpful in clarifying my thoughts.

  165. @ Gram3:
    What makes me wonder is that the SBC already had a statement on marriage in the 1963 BFM, and added additional language specifically calling out sexuality (albeit without further definition) in the 2000 BFM.

    I don’t know how it works at other SBC churches, and I can’t extrapolate from my church, which was in the ABC years ago, then left to become independent, then joined the SBC more recently. But my church considers the 2000 BFM a part of its statement of faith, and if the SBC wanted member churches to incorporate a new statement, my church at least would have to go through its constitutional amendment process to do so (technically, we’d have to go through the process even to reference a new BFM, since it specifically calls out the 2000 one, rather than simply the “most recent”).

    Because it’d be such a hassle at my church, I can’t see us being too eager to jump on that bandwagon when the 2000 BFM already has most of the bases covered. Do you think other SBC churches would be likely to go along with adding the Nashville Statement to the list of stuff that their members must agree with?

  166. I found this, from 2011. It seems that their biggest problems with homosexuality is hierarchy confusion.

    http://www.bpnews.net/36241/biblical-gender-roles-defended-at-conference

    Snippet:
    “Evan Lenow, assistant professor of ethics at Southwestern, spoke on the challenges of homosexuality for gender roles. Lenow said definitions of homosexuality range from sexual orientation to sexual behavior. He contended that both reject the biblical position of God’s ordained gender roles.

    Lenow said homosexuality attempts to dissolve gender distinctions and treats male and female as synonymous, thus rejecting the complementary natures of sex, gender, marriage and the Christ/church relationship.”

  167. Gram3 wrote:

    Affirming homosexual behavior might result in being shunned, and it certainly would cause some consternation and confusion and a desire to continue the conversation with me to find out what happened to me. I do not think denying that SSA is sinful in itself would be particularly controversial with the conservative *older* people we know who have several grandchildren and sometimes great-grandchildren. The Calvinistas in the 20-40 group is another matter.

    What they call SSA (Same Sex Attraction) is a reality and it is not chosen any more than opposite sex attraction. I did not choose it and I could not change. I prayed for years and focused on a relationship with Jesus and hoped the advice that “it is a phase” was true. But to no avail. It is good that many conservative Christians are waking up to this reality. However there are many conservatives that just fail to understand and call it “behaviour”.

    I respect conservatives who hold these points in tension – they believe the Bible condemns “homosexuality” but they have empathy for gay people and want to support them. They are trying to be obedient to Jesus according to their own conscience and at the same time are motivated by love and compassion for their fellow human beings.

    I don’t have time for blunt, matter-of-fact conservatives. I experienced this at my last church where I told a leader that I made the mistake of trusting that I had fallen in love with a close straight friend who obviously could not love me back and it was really hurting. It was also complicating the friendship which I wanted to get back on track to “normality”. He was so blunt because his facial expressions and vocal tones showed nothing but disgust and contempt. He did not have a shred of empathy of compassion but just brutally clobbered me with several texts from the Bible. This church had a lot of influence with the Gospel Coalition and has invited Kevin DeYoung to speak there. They have actually committed a much greater sin than “sexual immorality” because they have violated the royal law (as James calls it) to “love your neighbour as yourself”.

    Even worse are those who insist on referring to gays as “Sodomites”. The men of Sodom were motivated by violence and their threat to Lot “we will do worse to you” shows that they wanted to humiliate and subjugate these strangers. It is like the bullies in prison who do this very act for that reason. It also hardly likely that
    everyone in a whole town “had SSA” yet everyone gathered to perform this act. So these preachers are slandering gays when they refer to them as “Sodomites”

    The following considerations made me do some reading, thinking which eventually moved away from the traditional view

    1. SSA is not chosen and doesn’t seem to change
    2. Gay people (and all unmarried people) are human beings
    3. Whilst nobody dies of celibacy, people do die of loneliness and everyone needs warmth, love and affection.
    4. Romans and Leviticus only condemn one specific act which has a lot of health risks (because it is not the intended use of that part of the body).
    4. Many gay men do not even commit the specific act condemned in Levicus and Romans.
    5. There is a distinct historical and cultural background to those texts.
    6. A good father makes rules for the well-being of his children. The children are the joy of his heart and the rules have no inherent value in themselves.

    It was these factors that eventually made me shift position. You may consider these factors and still come to a different conclusion to myself. That is fine because if you are motivated by compassion and we all see things differently.

  168. Nancy2 (aka Kevlar) wrote:

    It seems that their biggest problems with homosexuality is hierarchy confusion.

    This is one of those hammer/nail things. They can’t seem to think of life in any other way. If they weren’t so harmful, I would feel sad for them.

  169. Josh wrote:

    What makes me wonder is that the SBC already had a statement on marriage in the 1963 BFM, and added additional language specifically calling out sexuality (albeit without further definition) in the 2000 BFM.

    Thanks to Al Mohler – he was on the BFM2000 revision team.

    Josh wrote:

    my church considers the 2000 BFM a part of its statement of faith

    Many SBC churches opted not to incorporate the BFM2000, sensing the trend toward Calvinism in some of the revised sections. They simply refer to the BFM1963 as their statement of faith. Individual SBC churches can do that since they have local church autonomy, independent from the ruling theo-politics at the national SBC level.

  170. Max wrote:

    Many SBC churches opted not to incorporate the BFM2000, sensing the trend toward Calvinism in some of the revised sections. They simply refer to the BFM1963 as their statement of faith. Individual SBC churches can do that since they have local church autonomy, independent from the ruling theo-politics at the national SBC level.

    Yep. Unfortunately, my church was so freaked out about having to have a “stronger” statement on sexuality that they totally missed the undesirable changes in the BFM 2000.

  171. Josh wrote:

    Do you think other SBC churches would be likely to go along with adding the Nashville Statement to the list of stuff that their members must agree with?

    I think the ones influenced by power politics in the SBC and the ones whose leaders are influenced by Mohler and Dever would incorporate the Nashville Statement as they have Danvers. That does not mean that people on a personal level would change how they feel toward people they know and love.

  172. Nancy2 (aka Kevlar) wrote:

    I found this, from 2011.

    You know, this is an interesting article in general. One, there is this quote which is ridiculously dramatic and shows us all those gospel=women at home serving men thoughts pretty clearly:

    “I contend that if we lose the battle over the gender debate,” White said, “we lose the proper interpretation of God’s Word, we lose inerrancy, we lose the authority of the Bible itself, and that is detrimental to the Gospel.”

    And then here is moore, almost getting in the ballpark of reality but still getting it totally wrong:

    “Husbands, if your wives are refusing to follow after your leadership, it is probably because your wife has seen and observed in your life a kind of leadership that is either absent or self-focused, and what she is saying to you is, ‘I don’t know where you are taking us. I don’t know if I can trust you at all.’
    Right. If you don’t trust your husband, because he is terrible, or selfish, or just doesn’t think things through in the same way or is missing the knowledge to make a good decision, you need to tell him so. You know what works well? Actually having a conversation and making decisions together, maybe? Did you consider that that might *solve* some of these problems???

    also, what nonsense is this?

    Recognizing the differences between the ways men and women develop relationships, Stinson said, “Men’s relationships are forged, not forced.”

    Seriously.

  173. @ ZechZav:
    You make some excellent points about SSA, which is the term I use when I talk to my conservative Christian friends because it is neutral. The points you make about the unhealthy act is why I asked about whether Matt Chandler had signed the Nashville Statement because Mark Driscoll had famously advocated that act between husband and wife. ISTM that Matt Chandler and Wayne Grudem and the other Gospel Glitterati who have signed the NS should have spoken out about Mark Driscoll advocating what they are now speaking out against. I was appalled then by their silence just as I am stunned by their inconsistency now.

    Your points are all good ones to think through for everyone who wants to be a faithful Christian. I find no textual support for calling out SSA as sinful. Because I think it is wrong to call something sinful which God has not called sinful, I think we should encourage one another (including heterosexuals) not to sin in any way when we are tempted. That is the way of Christ. When we do sin, we encourage one another to repent and practice whatever spiritual disciplines are helpful to avoid sinning further. Sexual behavior is another thing entirely, and I think that the lazy thing to do is conflate SSA with behavior. It’s also the morally wrong thing to do, IMO.

    If Gramp3 and I knew your blunt friend, we would take your blunt friend aside and very bluntly tell him that his wounds were not the faithful wounds of a friend but rather they were the haughty words of a spiritual bully who proved he was not worthy of your trust. He had not put oil and salve on and bound up your wounds but instead he had inflicted more *in the name of Christ* while acting exactly opposite to the way Christ himself acted. There are way too many of these men in leadership who are wounding people and driving them out of churches.

  174. Josh wrote:

    undesirable changes in the BFM 2000

    Russell Dilday, former President of Southwestern Baptist Theological Seminary, wrote a good analysis of the 1963 vs. 2000 Baptist Faith & Message. His “troubling factors” prophesied what Southern Baptists are experiencing today in regard to the trend toward Calvinism and creeds. http://www.centerforbaptiststudies.org/hotissues/dildayfm2000.htm

    Dilday was terminated at SWBTS during the Conservative (aka Calvinist) Resurgence. You may not agree with Dilday on everything, but you have to appreciate his grit to stand. We don’t have much backbone like that today in SBC national leadership – the New Calvinists are now on the SBC throne, with little challenge.

  175. ZechZav wrote:

    Even worse are those who insist on referring to gays as “Sodomites”. The men of Sodom were motivated by violence and their threat to Lot “we will do worse to you” shows that they wanted to humiliate and subjugate these strangers.

    Strangers who had already been extended Hospitality and Guest-Right by Lot.

    Not Castro Street — think RED WEDDING.

  176. Josh wrote:

    Kevin Swanson, who just released a statement saying that Hurricane Harvey was punishment for Houston electing a lesbian mayor, is also known for unashamedly proclaiming that “homosexuals are worthy of death!”

    Womb Tomb Swanson is a high school dork who managed to become an Alpha Male by Divine Right and is throwing his weight around HARD. “I’LL SHOW YOU! I’LL SHOW YOU!”

  177. Gram3 wrote:

    because Mark Driscoll had famously advocated that act between husband and wife.

    I have only quoted part of your sentence just to say one thing. I wonder how MD would know one way or another about ‘that act’ and if he did ‘know’ then why?

    The world is worse than we may think it is.

  178. Gram3 wrote:

    Matt Chandler and Wayne Grudem and the other Gospel Glitterati who have signed the NS should have spoken out about Mark Driscoll advocating what they are now speaking out against. I was appalled then by their silence just as I am stunned by their inconsistency now.

    Thanks Gram3 I really appreciate your kind words. Hypocrisy is the right word for those guys. They need to be honest with themselves and ask what their real motive are? If they can tolerate bullies like Mark Driscoll and they are willing to defend CJ Mahaney then they do not love Jesus. Whatever is driving their anti-women, anti-gay views is not love for Jesus. I would say that they are motivated by misogyny and homophobia and they have found a few Bible verses to justify themselves.

  179. okrapod wrote:

    how MD would know one way or another about ‘that act’ and if he did ‘know’ then why?

    I don’t have that information, but I think it was useful for shock value which would bring in the young men which would bring in the young women which would bring in more young men, and so on. Then that would raise his profile nationally. It is just taking me back to the first time I heard about it and the people who were associated with him. Elliot Grudem was on staff at Mars Hill, and Wayne Grudem, who is pushing the Nashville Statement, was silent about Driscoll when he was saying that wives had this duty, which is very troubling in view of Danvers. Why was Grudem silent then?

  180. Gram3 wrote:

    Why was Grudem silent then?

    Because they dont care what men do to their wives, so long as the wives do as they’re told. They dont care. I dont know enough about Grudem if he would pressure his own wife for such things, but it is not uncommon out in the wild so to speak. But I’ve never heard it tied to being a good christian before.

  181. @ ZechZav:
    You, like anyone who is pain and part of a body (the church), should have found support and empathy and resources to help you while you healed from that pain. I can dream and can imagine a very conservative church fully and completely grounded in the text while **also** fully and completely committed to faithfully walking with its people through all kinds of difficult trials including SSA and lifelong celibacy. The beauty of a church body is that each person has different difficult trials at different times, and *also* the same difficulty so they can truly empathize.

  182. @ Lea:
    Lea wrote:

    Because they dont care what men do to their wives, so long as the wives do as they’re told. They dont care. I dont know enough about Grudem if he would pressure his own wife for such things, but it is not uncommon out in the wild so to speak. But I’ve never heard it tied to being a good christian before.

    True. And because some of them are looking at some really bad stuff on the computer and are wanting to get into some bad stuff and will dabble their toes in the water of badness when they can. In various ways. What I don’t understand is why the women tolerate it.

  183. okrapod wrote:

    What I don’t understand is why the women tolerate it.

    That’s a good question and I have wondered the same. The only possibility that I can think of is that they have been brainwashed and indoctrinated by a complementarian ideology.

  184. ZechZav wrote:

    he only possibility that I can think of is that they have been brainwashed and indoctrinated by a complementarian ideology.

    It is quite possible that the women do not actually agree to it. The men would never tell their buddies if their wives were not obedient. It would be too humiliating to admit that your wife is out of control. If the wives do, it may be because they are cowed by the teaching or it may be because divorce has a lot of practical disadvantages if you have no marketable skills or have been on the shelf for awhile.

    The fact is that CBMW created a mess when they made an inflexible and artificial box that was not based on anything other than cultural preferences. When the social structures change over time, the most vulnerable are left even more vulnerable due to the inflexibility of the Almighty System.

  185. @ okrapod:

    “What I don’t understand is why the women tolerate it.”
    ++++++++++++++

    seems to me the prize for “Most Godly Because She’s the Least Like a Feminist” is a coveted thing complementarian women compete for.

  186. Muslin, fka Dee Holmes wrote:

    I knew a Marxist economics professor (tenured, even!) at the University of Texas at Austin back in the 1980s. Nobody disputed he wasn’t a good professor, because he was. But he was a Marxist, he was on hitlists of organizations trying to get rid of him.

    Academic freedom if it can be so called, is almost entirely dependent on the fickle winds of Zeitgeist. What follows is illustrative:

    Let’s suppose that my life had taken a different tack along an alternate time line and that I was the first of my tribe (Menominees of Wisconsin) to secure tenure at a reputable University. You know the oft repeated adage “publish or perish” right?
    Given my penchant for against the wind controversy, here’s one such paper:

    Native America: Mythos, Reality, and the Road Forward

    Menominee or not, tenure or no, they (at peer review) wouldn’t get halfway through the abstract and they’d be howling for my ouster.
    And when the undergrads got wind of it?
    Here’s a you tube film clip that would describe the ensuing carnage to a tee:

    https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=qLvGnro4Cgw

  187. Bridget wrote:

    Thanks, all, for being respectful.

    Yes, I’m thankful for that as well. It is helpful to hear firsthand from the heart to reach understanding of one another as Persons and not Positions. I encourage everyone who claims the name of Christ to find our primary identity in Christ and everything else far behind that. If CBMW has made “Married Man” and “Married Woman” primary identities (and I think they have for all practical purposes), then they are wrong to do that. CBMW has a truncated anthropology because they reached a hasty conclusion about the reason for cultural changes of the post-war era, specifically feminism.

    Secular culture makes other identities primary, and it always has. Tribes kill each other, but Jesus came to reconcile the tribes and genders. So, it grieves me to see Christians think of other things as identities, because those other things will never fill the missing part. It is easy to see that “Married Man” and “Married Woman” identities are false, and so is any other vain identity we are trying to fill up.

    I hope that Christians who feel an identity other than In Christ will reconsider, and I pray that our churches — especially the ones who are drawn to the Nashville Statement — will rethink how Jesus related to all kinds of people who had all kinds of issues. . And I hope the Nashville Statement signatories will check their Bibles to see who Jesus went postal on. He confronted sinners (of all kinds) to go and sin no more. Temple types got his Statements.

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