Saturday, February 26, 2011

Moral Confusion at "Christianity" Today's Women's blog

As expected, Her.meneutics has weighed in on the high school wresting news (Joel Northrup, a young Christian gentleman defaulted rather than wrestle Cassy Herkelman in a high school wrestling tournament). Being a good religious feminist (read: clairvoyant as to Northrup's motives and motivations), the blogger writes:

"My guess is that his decision to default has more to do with his view of who is against him on the mat than it does with actual violence. And I think his refusal has more to do with his cultural view of girls than his Christian faith."

First, if this had been turned around and an orthodox Christian had written similarly about the motives and motivations of a religious feminist, what do you think the reaction would be in the comments? Hysteria? Cries of foul play? Yes, just for starters.

Second. I don't think the blogger checked the relative records of Northrup and Herkelman or she wouldn't have penned that line. Then again, she is a religious feminist and we all know the old saw about statistics.

The rest of the post is confused and contradictory. She is sure Joel is a "good kid who clearly meant well" in spite of his culturally-based fears of getting girl-cooties, etc. What I think is important to note here is the quote above, which is a fairly standard way for religious feminists to dismiss orthodox Christians on matters of sexuality. We are to assume they are sincerely seeking, that they have been led to their positions without regard to the cultural messages and mores - but turn the tables and the automatic assumption is that we hold our positions out of fear -- fear of failure which for men means primarily being bested by a woman, and that we have imbibed a culturally driven patriarchalism which is contrary to the biblical teaching that we are all really "just people".

Never mind the implications of teaching our young men it is OK to get physically rough with young women. It's OK, because the only reason not do to so is a boy's fear of being beaten by a girl. And, when that boy becomes a man and he has imbibed this cultural message that we treat girls and boys the same way because to do anything else would be to take "away an opportunity from her. An opportunity for her to shine using her own God-given strength and ability." -- when he has imbibed that message and really does treat a woman as he would a man . . .

When did we start teaching our boys it's OK to hit girls?

Friday, February 25, 2011

Friday Frivolity: Laws Concerning Food and Drink

On Screaming

Do no scream; for it is as if you scream all the time. If you are given a plate on which two foods you do not wish to touch each other are touching each other, your voice rises up even to the ceiling, while you point to the offense with the finger of your right hand; but I say to you, scream not, only remonstrate gently with the server, that the server may correct the fault. Likewise, if you receive a portion of fish from which every piece of herbal seasoning has not been scraped off, and the herbal seasoning is loathsome to you, and steeped in vileness, again I say, refrain from screaming. Though the vileness overwhelm you, and cause you to faint unto death, make not that sound from within your throat, neither cover your face, nor press your fingers to your nose. For even now I have made the fish as it should be; behold, I eat of it myself, yet do not die.

Read the rest of it here.

ht: Zoe Romanowsky

Thursday, February 24, 2011

The writing life

A week or so ago, my friend Lydia McGrew published this over at What's Wrong With The World, which lead me to this article by another friend, Beth Impson. Let me commend both of them to you - the blog post and the article. They sparked a meditation of my own on the subject of writing.

Some years back, I read Annie Dillard's book, The Writing Life. When I finished it, I threw up my hands and gave up. If she caves in the face of all those real, imaginary and self-inflicted obstacles to writing, what hope do I have?

She's right. Writing is hard. It forces you to face demons of all sorts. Worst of all, it puts you face to face with your own nakedness. Bright lights, big mirror - every bit of your own nakedness. No one in their right mind would ever make a career of it, embracing it as a calling -- unless they had no other choice. Some of us can't not write. Whether it is something as mundane as a grocery list or as eternally important as defending the faith in the public square -- we can't not do it. Whether it's the physical act of writing longhand or the satisfaction of typing the last period on the last paragraph, something in the very fabric of our being compels us forward.

It is a calling, a vocation to be embraced and cherished as well as feared and approached as carefully as one would a growling lion standing between you and something precious. It is to be welcomed in the light of day and labored at into the wee small hours of the morning. It is a craft that takes practice and failed attempt after failed attempt. Some day the words flow like a river of sweetest honey. On other days they are stopped as surely as the biggest beaver dam imaginable would stop a river. On these days you can force yourself by sheer act of will to put some words down outside of your head. And, if you think on these days that what you've written is crap, you are probably right. But each day you sit at your desk, curl up in a chair, find a table at the coffee shop and you write. You write. And you write. Some day God may bless you with a small check. You will go out and buy more paper and pens or another ream of paper for the printer. Some day, one of those bits of crap you wrote on a very bad day will return to you, it will nudge your elbow. With a little encouragement and cleaning up, it may begin to glow a bit dully. So you begin to pay it a bit more attention, to polish it and, yes, it begins to shine.

You love it and you hate it. Sometimes on alternate days and sometimes at the very same moment. You may be devastated at the rejection of a carefully crafted piece or surprised into laughter at the acceptance of something you threw together in an hour. Your friends will think you are brilliant, odd, just a bit strange, sometimes even a blessing. And you are all of those things.

Such is the writing life.

Wednesday, February 23, 2011

The reading list grows ever longer

London's Daily Mail has a lot to answer for, I'll tell you. I already have a stack of books next to my reading chair which reaches up to my elbow. On top of the bookcase next to my reading chair there is another stack of books numbering just past a baker's dozen. And NOW I have to add another to the list. feh.

The Daily Mail has published an article featuring the forthcoming book by WND Books, The Flipside of Feminism. Readers are sure to be breathlessly awaiting (as the article's author expects) a "furious response" from feminists, their allies and cobelligerants. Of course, anything coming from the pen of Phyllis Schlafly elicits such a response, no matter the subject. She is one of those conservative women feminazis just lurrrv to hate. In this book, however, she is joined by Suzanne Venker as co-author. Venker is probably most well-known for her book, 7 myths of working mothers: Why children and (most) careers just don't mix . And wouldn't you know it, but that book includes a forward by Dr. Laura Schlessinger. Go figure!

Venker is surely right that we are living in a culture which makes it difficult for you to keep your own vows, let alone expect someone else to stand by theirs.

I can't wait to get the book (it's out next month) and do an extended review.

They do it to the Creeds as well

If anyone out there thought that "Egalitarian Exegesis" was limited to the trashing of the Holy Scriptures, you need to think again. Paraphrasing the Nicene creed, according to one of our Egalitarian friends looks like this:

"The Spirit and the Son proceed from the Father"

Yep. There you have it. Proceeds, not begotten. So far, none of the other brights over there have uttered a peep of correction. Not even the ones who can spot a whiff of "subordinationism" at 100 paces.

Now, let's look at the real Nicene Creed (according to Schaff):

I believe in one God, the Father Almighty, Maker of heaven and earth, and of all things visible and invisible.

And in one Lord Jesus Christ, the only-begotten Son of God, begotten of the Father before all worlds; God of God, Light of Light, very God of very God, begotten, not made, being of one substance with the Father, by whom all things were made.

Who, for us men for our salvation, came down from heaven, and was incarnate by the Holy Spirit of the virgin Mary, and was made man; and was crucified also for us under Pontius Pilate. He suffered and was buried; and the third day He rose again, according to the Scriptures; and ascended into heaven, and sits on the right hand of the Father; and He shall come again, with glory, to judge the quick and the dead; whose kingdom shall have no end.

And I believe in the Holy Ghost, the Lord and giver of Life, who proceeds from the Father [and the Son], who with the Father and the Son together is worshipped and glorified; who spoke by the prophets.

And I believe in one holy catholic and apostolic Church. I acknowledge one baptism for the remission of sins; and I look for the resurrection of the dead, and the life of the world to come. Amen

Friday, February 18, 2011

Having a Black Belt in Invincible Ignorance

Some of our feminist friends are discussing a recent DailyMail article detailing a Channel 4 reality show, "My Big Fat Gypsy Weddings". The show follows Gypsies (or Travellers) and details their marriage rituals and some aspects of their off-the-grid lives.

The travellers form closed communities with a well-defined way of life which breaks the law when it doesn't try to simply skirt it. Courting rituals and mores are closely defined as well. Even though girls are expected to marry as virgins, they often dress like cheap tarts. The rules are different for girls and boys with boys being allowed to drink at an early age and having much more physical liberty than girls. The girls are often taken out of school early to stay home and take care of their younger siblings.

It is clear that despite the big fat weddings with big fat dresses and big fat cakes, the men in the traveller community rule with a firm hand. And have done so for generations despite the attempts of law enforcement and social engineers. And yet our "egalitarian" friends have the solution:

"So, who wants to be a women's self-defense instructor among them? Doesn't look like it'd be too hard to change this culture for the better!"

Monday, February 7, 2011

Geocentrism Revisited

Those determined to seek life elsewhere in the universe are often guilty of three basic errors or fallacies. The first is the assumption that, because the universe is large and there is much in it, there must be life (life like us) elsewhere in this vast universe. Second, that these other life forms will be humanoid in appearance with similar technologies, needs, goals and intelligence. Last is the error of materialism. They are using material means to seek out material life forms.

But what if, as Rev. Dwight Longenecker wrote in a recent column, "earth is a miraculously beautiful home" built just for us - what if the earth was built jut or us and is a linchpin for all creation? After all, do the Scriptures not tell us, "the whole creation groans and suffers the pains of childbirth."? (Romans 8:22) And this because of the sin of one man, Adam? If the human race is not the reason for earth, Venus, Mars, Betelgeuse and all the rest of the glorious creation, WHY would Adam's sin, our sin, affect Pluto? or the beauty of the Horsehead Nebula?

And what if the universe is teeming with life but Carl Sagan, Stephen Hawking, Richard Dawkins and all their materialist colleagues can't, no won't, see because they are looking with a telescope and refuse to look beyond the telescope, can't allow themselves to look with the eyes of faith? Because our world is full with life of a different sort, filled with Angels and Demons (fallen angels).

These creatures exist in a realm not measurable by seismographs or scales nor can it be seen with the most powerful telescope. This parallel realm, the spiritual, surrounds us and enfolds us. Its creatures war for and against us. Those called Saints are ones who have explored this realm more fully than the rest of us. As with any explorer who brings back experience of "other worlds", whether those tales enlighten us about the cold winds at the summit of the Eiger or the tender and watchful care of Angels, we listen with rapt attention and learn of other realms from these intrepid explorers.

And First Contact? Oh, that happened a long, long time ago. In a garden called Eden.

Friday, February 4, 2011

Safely assumed?

A talk given in London to the Cleopas Society last month has generated a little buzz in the blogosphere. In this talk, Dr. Wijnagaards displays the remarkable facility that religious feminists have for re-writing history. According to him the words of institution Jesus spoke at the Last Supper were also words of commissioning, or ordination. Further, since women have always received the Eucharist, we can see that these words of institution were meant to apply equally to men and women as presiders at the Eucharistic meal.

Odd, isn't it, how those actually present knew less about Christ's intentions than a scholar speaking in London 2000 years later, isn't it? We know this is nothing new. Religious feminists have been indulging in the hermeneutics of suspicion to help them rewrite history from the beginning of their movement. Few were the "scholars" such as Paul Jewett who had the courage to say he simply thought Paul was wrong. Rather, the mass of religious feminists have indulged in a gnostic-like revisioning of the past, re-writing history and standing in judgment of those who have gone before rather than humbly climbing upon their shoulders. Claiming a knowledge apparently unavailable to anyone before, their new methods have uncovered knowledge and practices which are so stunningly obvious they have lain hidden for 2000 years -- hidden even from the eyewitnesses!

But our scholars know more. Dr. Wijngaards certainly believes he understands better than those who were actually present at the Last Supper what Christ meant and intended by his words. How else do we explain his contention that the words of institution were words of commissioning, that since women have always received communion they should also have always presided at the Eucharist? Those poor foolish disciples never understood the very words they heard. Instead, they ignored them and created an all-male fraternity out of whole-cloth and excluded the women - from that day.

But it wasn't just the men, the women participated as well. I will grant the assumption here that women were present at that most famous of meals. And yet, the women seem to have been wholly as foolish as the men. If they were there and they heard the same words and understood the implications as our latter-day scholar has -- why in heaven's name did none of them protest their immediate exclusion? Why didn't any of them stand against the men, interrupt the later council at Jerusalem and demand their place alongside the gentiles as full converts and presbyters, presiders at the holy meal?

Emboldened with the success of their revisionist project, our latter day prophets are re-writing history -- even history that has occurred within living memory. Our friends at Harper Collins, the parent company of prolific bible publisher Zondervan and corporate child of the pornographer, Rupert Murdoch, are giving us a tremendous gift. Our religious feminist friends weren't satisfied with their neutering of every Protestant's favorite patron saint, C.S. Lewis's beliefs about the sexes. Now they have, by sheer audacity of publication, declared him a newspeak feminist as well. Yes, friends, Harper is bringing us the C.S. Lewis bible using the NRSV translation!

In a supreme moment of irony, CSL revisioner extraordinaire had this to say (as quoted in Christianity Today ):

"Evangelicals are very good at picking up some good cause which is overstated. . . Read everything Lewis wrote...before you jump on a bandwagon like this."

She wasn't referring to her own, ahem, overstated case for Jack the Religious Feminist. No, she was referring to Professor Louis Markos' petition seeking to have Harper remove the bible from publication and re-release it with a more appropriate bible translation. I am sure Markos knows how quixotic his effort is. As for Van Leeuwen?

Shall I just say I am glad I don't have her nerve in my tooth?

Wednesday, February 2, 2011

The Feeding Frenzy

I'm connected to LifeSite news on Facebook and have been watching the developing story surrounding famed exorcist, Fr. Thomas Euteneuer. Here is the latest .

In brief, the priest has admitted to a violation of chastity with an adult woman and that said violation fell short of the sexual act.

So, there you have it. And yes, he is right that it is pointless to respond to every crackpot with access to the internet. But no, his defenders are wrong to point the finger at his"attackers". If Rev. Euteneuer had not opened the door with his unwise behaviour, there would be nothing with which to attack him. As it is, he has admitted to one sinful violation of his vows and it seems there are credible allegations of other instances.

I do deliberately call it unwise behaviour because our falls into sin rarely arise ex nihilo. In Euteneuer's case, he admits to violations of the proper protocol in his prayer ministry and, on occasion, helping people without others present. What he forgot is that those protocols are in place to protect both him and those to whom he ministers. He believed he needed to act quickly in some cases, in violation of those protocols. By doing so, he left both himself and those he presumed to be helping vulnerable to actual and perceived sinful acts.

So, the question is: Did his violation of basic principles really help in the end?

It seems the answer is "no". Just remember, the sharks wouldn't be circling around him now if he had not first put the chum in the water himself.

Tuesday, February 1, 2011

I'm guessin' they have seen True Grit?

Posted on CBE blog tonight, the post title was (cough), Open the Door to Equality:

"Chivalry is an archaic convention that undermines the strength and position of women as fellow human beings, equal in the eyes of God."

And to that, I have just two things to say. First, did you catch that language? Second, I'm a guessin' they haven't seen True Grit yet. Or maybe they saw it with those funny glasses another religious feminist seems to have been wearing when she saw it.