Because Christianity is bigger than Biblical manhood or Biblical womanhood (Blog of Retha Faurie)

51oii22ynfl__sx331_bo1204203200_Someone borrowed me the book “Her mother’s hope” by Francine Rivers. I could not make it past page 28, and even that was about 10 pages after I started searching for a reason why this book may not be as bad as it seems.

The reason: Tacit approval of abuse, choosing sides for the abuser and not the person abused, is characterized as Godly behaviour. By the name and back blurb, the mother is regarded as the good person in Marta’s life. Marta is physically abused by her father, unjustly punished, taken out of school, her father taking the money from her employers…

Her mother, the “good Christian” of the book so far, Read the rest of this entry »

Maria came from a rural sheep farming community. As a child, she was molested for years by a shepherd. For years, she hated to go to church, with the pulpit cloth in her church proclaiming: “I am the good shepherd.” To make it worse, her preacher liked to call God a shepherd in his sermons. Maria had to escape from that. As an adult, she started attending a church which does not have any reference to God as shepherd on the pulpit cloth, and started immersing herself in other images of God: God the Father, the groom, the bread of life, the living water. She even found help in images like the Great Physician or the Rock of Ages, terms not in scripture.

Would you say that Maria is denying an important Bible truth, being unwilling to admit God is the Good Shepherd? Or that her theology is driven by her emotions?

Of course not. We assume she intellectually understands why God is called a shepherd. It is simply not the image she needs to focus on, in order to understand God better. Anthropomorphic (humanized) images of God are all well and good when it helps you to understand God better, and a lie the moment it gives you a false image of God. God is “the Mighty Warrior” (Zephaniah 3:17), but if that causes you to see God as a powerful enemy, the image is taken too far.

What about this one:

As a child, Maria was molested for years by her father. For years, she hated to go to church, as her preacher liked to call God “the Father” in his sermons. Maria had to escape from that. As an adult, she started attending a church where God is seldom referred to that way, and started immersing herself in other images of God: The shepherd, the groom, the bread of life, the living water. She even found help in images like the Great Physician or God as mother, terms not in scripture.


Read the rest of this entry »

Equal, but?

equal-but“In complementarianism, men and women are equal, but with different roles.”

“So, they have equal say, but each is seen as the expert, or authority, on a different set of topics?”

“No, men have authority. Men should lead, but they are equal spiritually.”

“Okay, spiritual equality means that even though men should lead, they have equal say at church?”

“No, women could not be a pastor, or elder, or teach men at church. They have to remain quiet.”

“So, spiritual equality only means equal standing and responsibility before God?”

“No, husbands have to take responsibility for their wives before God. That is what ‘spiritual leader’ means.”

“Their equality is in society, then? Men and women can equally much excell in careers, be bosses at work, in politics, etc.?”

“No. It somehow does not sit well with men to work under a woman. Men are designed to lead. The home is the woman’s sphere, society is the male sphere.”

“So, men and women are equals at home?”

“Yes, as long as you understand ‘equal’ right. The man is the head of the home, the woman has to obey him.”

“How is this equality?”

“You probably think equality means sameness! If you do not believe in God-given gender roles, question God and not me.”

Read the rest of this entry »

Dear Mrs. Noah…


Dear Mrs. Noah, what have you thought

when your husband built a big ship on a message from God?

Did you think he was crazy, or strange or silly

to make an ark on dry land – for a big flood? Really?


Did God speak to you too, and tell you what He will do? Read the rest of this entry »

Sometimes, I hear Christians mentioning porn. They agree (at least to each other’s faces) that it is bad, but many of them seem to think the main issue with porn is the lust in the attitude of the one who looks at it. That may have been the case in the era when porn meant a nipple-showing young woman in a magazine under a mattrass, but that is not the case now.

In today’s world, more than 80% of the most popular porn show violence, physical and verbal, against women.* Titles of porn are things like “Asian/ Busty/ Latina/ black/ blonde [crude terms for women] punished/ raped/ gets what’s coming to her.” Actions in pornography are women gagging and vomiting because of rough oral use, women choked, slapped, their hair pulled, penetrated by 3 men, etc. This means that porn is not a fantasy – real, actual women gets hurt in making the porn.

Before you answer: “But she consented” , consider that this consent™ is done in an industry known for pressuring women and treating them like meat, and that often does worse things during the scene than what they said beforehand will happen. Pornographers are, of course, experienced in pressuring young, inexperienced women. The majority of porn actresses uses drugs to cope, and a drugged woman cannot give consent.

And remember that with sex, consent could be withdrawn: If you said “yes” yesterday but “no” today, your partner could not sleep with you today. In porn, the video is on the Internet forever, even when someone in it no longer wants it to be seen.

That is, when there is any consent at all. In one study, 49% human trafficking victims testified that porn was made of them. The viewer of porn has no way tobroken-dolls know he (or she) is not getting off on the actual rape of someone who is really kept a prisoner for sexual exploitation. Women in porn often looks unhappy, shocked and in pain – because they are.

To get off on women getting hurt is literally to love cruelty. It goes against the second one of what Jesus called the two greatest commandments:
“…Love others as yourself.”


A wise person would never tell a woman to put it out for her porn-loving husband:

She: “My husband watch porn.”

Well-meaning friend: “Then be adventurous. Do some of the acts in the porn with him.”

She: “My husband gets off on cruelty towards women.”

Well-meaning friend: “Then let him take out the cruelty on you.”

Misogyny is even a part of gay and female dominated porn. For example, male subs in porn are usually insulted with words that mean they are not masculine enough – masculine is a good thing they fall short of. With porn done to women, it is assumed that womanhood itself, not failing at femininity, is a reason to mistreat them.

Why, if violence in porn is so bad, does so few people talk about it? One answer is that people are so blinded when looking at *S*E*X*!* that they do not notice the violence. To quote Gail Dines:

When violence is sexualized, you render violence invisible.” – Gail Dines

Another is that treating women as less than, as objects, is so normal in culture that porn merely emphasize what most of society – including religious gender hierarchist society – say. When the whole world say women should accept bad treatment and go along with what men want, we are not shocked to see just that in porn.

This violence has a terrible effect on our youth: Children who watch porn do not have any abilty to understand how this is violence, abnormal, how this is the fantasies of sex offenders acted out on real female bodies. Children, when watching porn, only want to learn what sex is like. Of course, these images are arousing to these young teens, and they learn that sex is violent and violence sexy. Boys learn they should be violent, girls they should enjoy – or pretend to enjoy – any and all forms of violence against them. This is why teen girls nowadays are being treated for internal injuries because of porn-inspired sex.

Others believe the starting point for discussing porn should not be violence against women, but treating it as an addictive drug, that harms both the addict and those around him (or her). That approach should feature in discussions too. And it still makes the “just be available for him” advice terrible: Addictions cannot be solved by being available for the addict.

If you take one thing home from my article, please know that porn is not just against Christian thinking in the “do not lust” sense. It is anti-Christian even in the basic, second-biggest-commandment-equal-to-the-biggest “love others as yourself” sense. If you need another text , “the love of money is a root of all kinds of evil” (1 Tim 6:10a) is still close to the heart of why porn/ prostitution exploits women and children. Lust, too, is better understood if we think of it as a way to see humans as less than human, instead of viewing it as a desire to do fun things.


Other sources:

Master post: Antiporn-activist

Master post: Anti porn


Another source linking to how porn leads to negative attitudes: (increased risk of “believing things that would reduce your empathy for a rape victim or lead you to blame a rape victim”, of developing sexually deviant tendencies, and of committing sexual offenses, attitudes that support sexual violence against women…)


How (not) to preach about rape

“As a child, I my father told me that bees make honey from flowers, but spiders make poison from those same flowers. We can do the same with how we handle the Bible.”

Rev. Rethie van Niekerk, paraphrased.

It is a memory I buried for more than a quarter of a century. Read the rest of this entry »


All the block-ee children sat

and heard of the builder who made them to rule the toy mat! image-28

She built some from round blocks in orange and red

their names will be “Jellels” was what she said.

Others were made from squares of wood in green,

those she called “Bootles”, and the builder was keen

to tell how those blockees what she had to say:

She said she made block-ees to be like her in some way

She wants them to rule, and together defend Read the rest of this entry »

Tag Cloud