Doing No Harm

Is doing no harm a sufficient moral principle? Let’s plunge into the Deeper Waters and find out.

Often today, we don’t hear about if an action is good or evil. We hear about if it is harmful or not. Now, causing harm is one aspect to consider in morality, but it is not the only. When it comes to the idea of redefining marriage, part of the question asked is “Well who is it hurting?”

For one thing, changing the meaning of marriage for anyone changes it for everyone. Everyone’s marriage is shifted to not a union designed to bring about children for the prolonging of civilization, but rather to a sort of union from two people who are committed to one another. By this standard, we could say that two roommates could be married or a brother and sister who choose to live together are married or a son who brings his mother who is a new widow into his home are married.

However, while those are important situations to bring up, why not go back and question this principle about not harming anyone. Consider the scenario of a peeping Tom for example. he has found a peephole outside of a showering area where he can stand and watch naked women shower. He is never caught and the women never have any idea they are being watched? Are any of them being harmed? If not, then can we say this is wrong?

Consider also a dentist who has a private practice. To keep costs down, he doesn’t even have a secretary. He works alone and makes all his appointments. From time to time, beautiful women come in and he has to put them under for surgical operations. What they don’t know is that sometimes when they are unconscious, he undresses them and fondles them. The women never get pregnant and so never find out about what he’s done. Has he done any harm?

If you’re a Christian or even most any other kind of theist, you could say this man has damaged his standing before God in each case and so he has done harm at least to himself. He has lowered himself from being what a human being ought to be to being something less. If you are a secularist though, you do not have this option.

Not only that, but we know that there are times that causing harm is the good thing to do. I have a friend who just had a quadruple bypass operation. Right now, he is still in a lot of pain. I have told him some about my having scoliosis surgery and how I too was in a lot of pain and understood what that was like. In both cases, our doctors harmed us and left us with tremendous pain. The thing is, we knew this would happen and we went through it willingly and even paid our doctors for it. Why? Because we were not being harmed to be harmed. We were being given some degree of harm in order to get a greater good.

Another example is telling a loved one a hard truth. Sometimes, this is very harmful to the person for the immediate and short-term, but it is good in the long run. Again, consequences are not all that is to be considered, but they are a part of this. Consequences alone are insufficient. We need to look at the action, who is doing it, and why they are doing it.

No one being harmed by itself is insufficient. By this standard, the Peeping Tom and the dentist are both okay. By a Christian standard, they are in the wrong because they are lowering themselves as human beings and actually in the long run making themselves more likely to be the people who will take further steps to do actual visible harm to others.

Our moral thinking needs to go deeper than just utilitarianism. We need to look at who we are and why we do what we do.

In Christ,
Nick Peters
(And I affirm the virgin birth)

Government Won’t Change The Culture

How do Christians win a culture war? Let’s plunge into the Deeper Waters and find out.

Imagine the picture in the society. Committed Christians are a small minority in the population. Most people are involved in movements that are often highly religious, but are not Christian, and don’t care about traditional Christian values. Christians are seen as crazy because of the opinions that they hold on their doctrine and their practice. The government is actively working to silence thoughts that are critical of them. Immorality is at a high and there are numerous cases of sexual immorality all taking place.

Yes. Yes. This is the state of America today.

America? I was talking about the Roman Empire in the time when Christians first came about.

However, there are a number of parallels to our Christian society today. We could say there are a number of parallels to any Christian society anywhere. There are parallels to Christians in China. There are parallels to Christians in Muslim nations.

Let’s look at the first Christians. Now it is true that eventually the government did become Christian, but until then, what did the Christians do? Did they sit on their hands depressed and give up because the overarching government presence wasn’t going their way normally? No. Now this is not to say that the Christians did not appeal to the Roman government at times and stand up for themselves. There is no wrong in that.

Actually, Justin Martyr did just that writing letters to the emperor explaining Christianity. There are at times you read the letters and think with the way Justin talks to the emperor that he is being either incredibly brave or incredibly foolhardy. Still, he was making a case for the Christians.

Ah. But the Roman Empire didn’t have mass social media to deal with either!

And they also didn’t have it to use. Can you imagine what Paul would be doing today with podcasting, YouTube, Facebook, Twitter, and everything else? No doubt, he would be banned in a lot of places, but he would still be producing material. A Christian in Rome could not immediately communicate with one in Egypt. All travel would be long and arduous. As much as internet and the media can be a hindrance, use them properly and they will be gifts.

Still, as we look at what happened to change the society, it wasn’t a top-down approach. We in America often seem to base our hopes on how the elections go. Now I am not at all saying elections are unimportant. By all means, vote for the best leaders that you can, but if you do not win those elections, it does not mean all is lost.

You know who are really making a difference in our culture right now?

Parents. Parents going out and complaining to their school board about what is going on in the classroom. These people are taking the stand. We live in a country where we have a document of some importance that says “We the people.” It does not say “They the government.” We The People have the power.

Of course, I am not advocating violence at all, which I sadly have to say or else someone is going to say I want that, but I am advocating that we stand up for ourselves. Run for school board. Run for office. Organize together.

When Duck Dynasty was removed from A&E and then from Cracker Barrel, Christians united. They formed a Facebook page, got unified, and cancelled their services with these companies until they relented. When leftists went after Chick-Fil-A, we had Chick-Fil-A Day and sent their sales soaring for that one day. We showed what we could do with our people and what did we do with these great results?

Nothing. Not a thing.

The homosexual and transgender community are a far far far lesser percentage than Christians are and yet they get more and more of what they want. Why? They speak up. They protest. They make noise. They use the media well. They know how to interact with the culture.

We don’t. If anything, we think by not speaking up and not being judgmental, we are being meek, like Jesus. Jesus was meek, but not the way we think of it. Meek people the way we often think of them are not worth being crucified. Jesus was enough of a counter-cultural force that they had to give Him the ultimate death penalty to silence Him.

Learn to say no. Learn to be unified. Don’t like what’s going on? If you’re a Christian parent, meet with several other Christian parents. Use social media and meet across the nation. Show up at your school board and let them know you’re angry. Write to your senators, congressmen, etc. Let them know where you stand. Honestly, we could learn a few things from the LGBTQ+ community.

Do you want to boycott a company? That’s absolutely useless unless it is unified, like it was with the push to get Duck Dynasty back. Form groups like Facebook pages and get millions joined in and protesting. Get recognized. Let people know you’re out there and you refuse to be a pushover.

Then take your Christianity seriously. The early Christians did. When a plague came, most everyone else fled. The Christians stayed behind and cared for the sick, unknowingly building up an immunity for themselves in the process. One of the most radical things you can do is authentically live Christianity.

Be someone of upright and pure character. Shun pornography and speak out against that industry and live a chaste and holy life sexually. Don’t be someone greedy and give generously. Care for those around you who can’t care for themselves. It’s a shame Christians are more often known for what we stand against, rampant immorality, than who we stand for, Jesus Christ.

And yes, that means study Christianity and take it seriously. Really learn about what you believe and why. Christianity can’t just be a hobby, but it has to be something you take seriously.

Christians overcame in the Roman Empire and that lasted for a long time.

History can repeat itself.

Save the culture. Be Jesus to it.

In Christ,
Nick Peters
(And I affirm the virgin birth)

What Is It?

Do we think about what things are anymore? Let’s plunge into the Deeper Waters and find out.

If you are a cat owner, you understand the curiosity of a cat. Many times when I open my closet door to get out clothes for the day, my cat will just happen to wander in and I wait as he explores a little bit before he comes out again. After all, it’s been a few days since he’s been in there and something might have changed. Cats are curious. They want to know.

Yesterday, I wrote about how people don’t talk about what marriage is. Today, I saw someone post on Facebook Seth Dillon of the Babylon Bee asking why some people hate jokes more than child porn? This about Balenciaga and their advertising activity lately whereas the Babylon Bee can get banned on Twitter for a joke. I also had someone respond to my blog on TheologyWeb about how words like marriage are pretty much meaningless in our society today.

There is a case to be made that marriage is our third most meaningless word in society today. The others are God and love. When normal people talk about these terms, they never define them. They just talk about them as if everyone knows them when really hardly anyone does. The terms become whatever the speaker thinks they are.

Our culture sadly abandoned metaphysics long ago. Because of that, we no longer think of what things are. Why should we? After all, Kant came along and said we can’t know the things in themselves, but only how they appear to us.

Now it could be said that science is the exception to this. Don’t we go out and discover reality? That’s the goal, but that’s also the goal of most every other field out there as well, just done differently. Every field has its own methods, but each is aimed at truth to some degree.

Yet nowadays, even that has been lowered. A lot of people look at how “Follow the science” worked in 2020. We also see science being used to control in the case of something such as climate change controversies. We see how science is selectively ignored when it comes to abortion as all of a sudden, it does get closer to metaphysics supposedly asking “Well what is a person really?”

If we are the ones who are ultimately at the center of reality, then words are what will matter the most to us. If we determine reality, it goes a step further. It is not just what the person said, but how we feel about what the person said. It doesn’t matter what the other person meant to say. It is how we see the words that matters and if I see your words as violence, then they are violence.

This is especially the case in the area of sexuality. We talk a lot about the topic, but we don’t think about it. We don’t ask what it is, how it came to be, and what we should use it for. This is the last thing our culture wants to do.

After all, if you define something and talk about a purpose of it, you have to talk about a right and a wrong way to use it, and that cannot be allowed. We might  say “Well, we don’t allow XYZ yet”, but it’s easy to respond that we are allowing activities today that we never would have dreamed of allowing years ago. Every step that has been taken by those on the left to push the envelope has led to it being pushed further and further. It’s easy to claim the slippery slope fallacy, but the truth is sometimes slopes are slippery and people do fall down them.

What is needed in our culture? A return to learning what things are and to watch the terms that we use. Defining terms is not just good for debate, but it is also good for society. We use so many words without thinking about what they mean. Kierkegaard once said something about how we care so much about the freedom of speech, but think so little about the freedom of thought that gives our speech meaning.

Until we learn what we’re talking about, maybe it would be best to just not say anything at all.

In Christ,
Nick Peters
(And I affirm the virgin birth)

Book Plunge: Grand Theft Childhood

What do I think of Lawrence Kutner and Cheryl Olson’s book published by Simon and Schuster? Let’s plunge into the Deeper Waters and find out.

I heard about this book while going through The Gaming Mind on Audible. Making a mental note, I went to my library website and ordered it. I’m thankful that I did. This has been an amazing read on the alleged link between video games and violence in children.

This is not a book written from a Christian perspective, at least explicitly. The authors do not state their worldview. However, the authors have interacted with the material they critique and have also included snippets of interviews they have done with children and their parents.

To which, a lot of that information should be encouraging to parents. Older children, for instance, happen to think there are some games that their younger brothers and sisters shouldn’t be playing and they won’t play when those people are around. Surprisingly, something they were often concerned about was swearing. After all, there are a lot of things in a game hard to copy, but swearing isn’t. All you have to do is speak.

Also, something that needs to be said is that many times, children actually do imbibe their parents’ worldviews more than parents realize and learn what to play and not play. Of course, this isn’t across the board, but children are watching and are learning. Quick pro tip here on how parents can better understand what’s going on in the games of their children. Play the games with them and/or talk to them about them. (Yeah. Actual interaction with your children works. Who would have thought?)

The authors also don’t just look at the fact that children play violent games, but often ask why they do. Many times, children say that this actually helps them deal with their anger. In an odd way, that could be saying that rather than cause aggressive behavior in children, video games actually help to alleviate it. Frankly, if there was a strong connection between violent video games and violent children, we would see a lot more violent children.

Also interesting is that if anything, NOT playing video games, especially for boys, could be more of a problematic sign. Remember the Virginia Tech shooter? Something odd his classmates said after about him was, “He never wanted to play video games with us.” Video games are often a tool of social integration and bonding. Kids today get together to talk about games like Pokemon. I started getting more friends in Elementary School and beyond because I had a reputation as being quite good at video games.

The authors also point out that the hysteria over video games has happened over most every new form of media that has come out. Violence and sex in these has never been new. Go back to ancient history? It’s there. Medieval times? Still there. Renaissance and Enlightenment? Yep. What would be an anomaly is a time where such stories did NOT exist.

What about sex in video game? Yep. This is covered. (Odd way of describing it.) Most of us know about Lara Croft and the hope of so many teenage guys to find a nude code to use for her. Now, many games can be even more explicit. Again, this is something that parents need to talk with their children about, but it is not a shock that females are made to be attractive in video games. The Final Fantasy series in X, XII, XIII, and relevant spin-offs from those games all had a protagonist with a very similar look based on what was attractive in Japan at the time.

So when is there a problem? It’s not in the gaming itself. It’s everything around that. If your child is becoming more withdrawn, has a dramatic change in moods, has no or very few friends, and is dropping grades, don’t blame it on the games. The games are often a way of dealing with whatever the real problem is. Find that.

For parents also, the last chapter is all about practical advice for you and it does enforce what I recommend. Play the games with your children, or at least talk about them. Show an interest in them. If the world of the Legend of Zelda means something to your child, find out why. You could get to understand your child better and your child will think they matter when you show interest in what interests them.

If you enjoy gaming and want to deal with criticism, read this book. If you are a parent and you are concerned about your children and video games, read this book. The same applies if you are a teacher or someone in ministry, especially youth ministry.

In Christ,
Nick Peters
(And I affirm the virgin birth)

Words To The One Struggling With Porn

Is some of our advice just trite? Let’s plunge into the Deeper Waters and find out.

I saw him on a site I’m on making a post. He was scared he would be alone forever and sometimes gave in to the lust of the eyes. Is there any Scripture that can help when the temptation comes up?

The first thing I want to say here will sound shocking to some Christians, but that’s just that having a bunch of Bible verses will not work.  Am I denying power in Scripture? No, but I am saying that Scripture comes in as part of a worldview and needs to be understood from that worldview. This is why if you’re in a debate, just throwing out a Scripture won’t settle an issue the huge majority of the time because every Scripture is to be interpreted and will be in a context.

The view taken of Scripture that you just need verses is actually treating Scripture like it’s a magic book. If you just state the Scripture in temptation, it will dispel the temptation. If you use Scripture, you need to study the Scripture in-depth and have a whole theology worked out already. You need a worldview on how you see sex and marriage if you want to overcome pornography.

Second was someone who said that if you have Jesus, you’re never alone. I get what someone is saying when they say this and it’s meant to be encouraging, but it just doesn’t work. Even in the garden it was said it was not good for man to be alone, and this is when it was just Him and God. God made us for companionship. Even Jesus as He walked this Earth had friends with Him.

If you want to be married and love someone, then saying you have Jesus will not meet that desire. Of course, none of this is meant to down Jesus, but this is something we wouldn’t say in most any other circumstance. Just consider how it sounds in the following.

“Yes. I know you’ve been trying to have a child for a long time and it isn’t happening, but you do have Jesus.”

“Yes. I know that you don’t have money coming in and you have bills that you can’t pay, but you have Jesus.”

“Yes. I know that you’re hungry and you have nothing to eat, but you have Jesus.”

None of these meet the desires of the people involved. The intent I have no doubt is good to say this, but the receiving of it is quite painful to some people. Not only are the desires of their heart being pushed aside, but it can also tempt them to think that they’re ungrateful for what they do have.

So to get to some more practical suggestions, I encouraged this man to get some good software like Covenant Eyes or XXXChurch that can help block out pornography sites. Get some good friends that can hold him accountable and will do so. Get involved in a group like Celebrate Recovery. Get counseling.

I also pointed out that really, pornography does not make you a man, but if anything it makes you less than a man. After all, if you want to see a nude female body, before, you would need to go out and woo a woman and impress her. Even if it wasn’t all the way to marriage, it required some work and sacrifice and risk on your part. Today? Nah. Just make a few clicks on a computer or phone. You can get to see a woman, physically respond, and then feel like a man without any work required.

Unfortunately, the path of least resistance becomes the one we naturally take. Why do a risky thing when you can do a safe one? Another sad part also is that many guys who have done this wind up struggling with ED.

So what do you do? Get a few dating apps on your devices and work on meeting women. Go out to social events. I’m making it a point to go to them more often to get to meet people. That requires that I step out of my comfort zone, but it is worth it. Last night I went to a public event and I stayed long enough for the social gathering which involved sitting at tables having a meal, which for me on the spectrum is extremely unsettling for me, and yet I did it. I left after that because I needed to get a shower and fix dinner, but I did it.

Then, I told him to pray. We could pray for one another. Do I struggle with porn? By the grace of God, no, but I have my own struggles and I know that plenty of people do struggle with porn. They need to be shown love and at the same time guided to repentance.

Ultimately, as I said, one needs a worldview of sex and marriage. Then Scripture will be much more effective. It will fit into a whole worldview that you have already.

May God be with you if you struggle with porn and may you find repentance and deliverance.

In Christ,
Nick Peters
(And I affirm the virgin birth)

Book Plunge For Fun: Mollie McQueen Is Not Getting Divorced

What do I think of Lacey London’s book published by SSO Publishing? Let’s plunge into the Deeper Waters and find out.

I’m looking through my emails with Kindle books on sale and I see this one with the book Mollie McQueen Is Not Getting Divorced and read the description about a lady who after another sexless night with her husband decides she’s 30 and wants to move on with her life so she’ll get a divorce and about how a journey starts from there. The price is free, so you can’t beat that, but I am a student at a seminary with books to read otherwise, even though I still do get in fun reading. Will I or won’t I?

Eventually, I decide I will and start to read a chapter a day. As I get into the book, I sometimes am tempted to break that rule. I want to go through more to find out what is going to happen in the story. I had bought the book originally to also see what a more secular perspective might have to say. There is nothing explicitly Christian in the book, but at the same time nothing explicitly non-Christian really, and the book is not filled with profanity and incessant dirty talk. Descriptions are rather tame.

Not only that, but I did wonder if there could be some secret Christianity in there due to one of the main good characters in the book who is a voice of wisdom being named Evangelina. That’s certainly not a common name to have. Something that makes me hesitant to say that is that the book is from a British author and I know that Christianity is a minority position there. Still, there are some devout Christians over there. (N.T. Wright anyone?)

Anyway, I don’t want to give spoilers since this is really a great book to read and part of a series. (Yes. I’ve already got the next one in the series.) However, as Mollie goes through her journey, she does start to learn a lot about marriage and much of the marriage advice in the book is incredibly solid.  This is a book that admits that marriage is hard and also that marriage is worth it. It also does what it can to dispel the idea that marriage can be absolutely perfect as all marriages have flaws.

What is most helpful is as Mollie goes through her journey, she had originally started complaining about her husband Max and all the things that he needed to change. As she goes through her life and her path to divorce, she comes to realize that she’s quite the guilty party as well. She starts actually learning to see things from Max’s perspective and how to better communicate with him.

I wound up actually telling my therapist that I’m reading this book and sent a link to him as he is helping me work through and process my own divorce. It’s the kind of book that if I was doing marriage counseling or even pre-marital counseling for a couple, I could have them read this book and see what they think about it. There’s good advice and Mollie is a very engaging character and not only that, it’s just fun.

If you want to get the book, you can do so here. On Kindle, it looks like at this moment, the first one is still free.

In Christ,
Nick Peters
(And I affirm the virgin birth)

 

Book Plunge: Cynical Theories

What do I think of James Lindsay and Helen Pluckrose’s book published by Pitchstone? Let’s plunge into the Deeper Waters and find out.

Woke is a word that has shown up regularly in the past few years. Now we regularly hear about social justice warriors and of course, constant cries of racism, sexism, misogyny, homophobia, transphobia, and fat phobia. Our world has become more divided than ever as everyone is assumed to be a closet racist and if you deny that, well, you’re a bigot and that just demonstrates what a racist you are.

I was eager to get this book to see what Lindsay and Pluckrose had to say about the topic. They do bring a lot of excellent academic work here, but the problem is they also seem to be fighting battles on two fronts. Their main emphasis is on the Woke and how that hurts scholarship and academia, but there’s a dose of mild scientism as well as any chance to take a jab at religious people.

That’s ultimately unhelpful for their work. After all, if they want to reach Americans and a large number of Americans are still religious, this will turn a lot of them off, which would be a shame. I kept seeing my position as a religious believer being misrepresented. I am able to see past that, but how many people out there will not?

The scientism is also a problem as too many times, the impression comes across that science is the only way to know truth. Science is a great way of knowing some truth, but not all truth. There are plenty of things we all believe that do not come through science. While I am an empiricist, I hold that while all scientific knowledge is empirical, not all empirical knowledge is scientific.

Another problem is the way that they talk about progress and liberalism. Much of what they call liberalism looks nothing like liberals I see today. I also definitely disagree with them on the approach to the LGBTQ+ community. I am not opposed to progress, but too often we get to a place and say “This is progress” when in many cases, I can see it as regression.

However, time should be spent on the positives. One of the biggest walkaways you should get from this book is that for the Woke, disagreement is not allowed. Yes. You are allowed to ask questions and you should ask to understand, but not to challenge. Theory, their name for anything like Critical Race Theory or any idea that goes with a political identity, cannot be questioned.

This is no way to do academia. Questions and challenges should always be welcome, even if a theory has stood the test of time for hundreds of years. Questioning allows us to grow and shows cracks where a belief needs to be examined. Perhaps in some cases, it could show the whole paradigm is flawed and we have to move to a new paradigm.

Also, there are health consequences in many cases. Consider the idea that being fat is not a risk to one’s health. Yes. This is being taught and some people can even find doctors that won’t treat obesity like a problem. As I write this, MonkeyPox is something big and yet many of us are noticing that while Covid was around, people were told they had to shut down gathering places, including churches, but no one is saying that about bathhouses. Everyone is just being told “Act responsibly.” Would that we had all been told that during Covid.

I can also remember that when 9/11 happened, one of the first matters of importance to get out there was that this did not represent true Islam. After all, we had to deal with Islamophobia. We have become a culture that wants to protect peoples’ feelings more than the people themselves.

So this is a book with a lot of important material, but keep in mind the caveats. Take the wheat and throw away the chaff. Get the good and embrace it and use it. We are in a real battle with Woke.

In Christ,
Nick Peters
(And I affirm the virgin birth)

Book Plunge: Live Not By Lies

What do I think of Rod Dreher’s book published by Sentinel? Let’s plunge into the Deeper Waters and find out.

Dreher’s book is asking the question of what Christians in the West are meant to do in an age of increasing totalitarianism. Now this does not mean anything like what happens today in China or what happened in the Gulag, but it could be likely to happen in the form of a soft totalitarianism where control comes through social means more than government means. As I write this though, it is about a week after the raid of Trump’s place in Florida and a lot of questions are being raised.

The theme of the book comes from Alexander Solzhenitsyn who said that one thing we have to do is even if we don’t go out with a megahorn shouting the truth everywhere, we can choose to not believe the lies. For us today, these lies are being placed on us regularly by a culture calling into question truths we never would have dreamed being called into question a few years ago and too many people go along for the ride easily. I was stunned enough when I realized I had to defend that marriage is a union of a man and a woman. Today, I have to defend the idea of what a man and a woman is. We have a woman sitting on the Supreme Court who couldn’t answer the question of what a woman is.

More and more, if you disagree with this ideology, you can be shut down. How many people do we know who have been removed from Twitter because of this? How often have we seen cancel culture dig up something someone said ten years ago and shut them down because of it? Keep in mind that before these people were culturally on top, they also insisted on tolerance. That didn’t last long.

Dreher’s book looks at people who went through the rise of Communism and survived in countries where it was. Their examples are often powerful and convicting. These aren’t superhuman people. These are simple ordinary people who did something unique. They lived out their faith in a world where it was condemned.

The repeated advice in the book is to see, judge, and act. Christianity when lived out can overcome any evil that is brought to bear against it. As our country comes closer and closer to more and more government control and government going in a war against reality, this is something we should all keep in mind.

Governments can push control in many ways, but we are in control of our minds and our attitudes. We can make it a point to say that we will live not by lies. We will choose to live the path that Jesus lived.

If I had any criticism of the book, it would be that the book is long on examples, but not long on suggestions. This is how people lived in hard totalitarianism, but I would have liked more that could be done by those of us in a soft totalitarianism or at least a growing one. I recommend Christians read this one and read it along side either Strange New World or The Rise and Triumph of the Modern Self by Carl Trueman.

And live not by lies.

In Christ,
Nick Peters
(And I affirm the virgin birth)

Book Plunge: The Flirtation Experiment

What do I think of Phylicia Masonheimer and Lisa Jacobson’s book published by Thomas Nelson? Let’s plunge into the Deeper Waters and find out.

I try to read books about marriage despite being divorced. If anything, I read to get help for when my second marriage comes about, Lord willing and may He be. I read books written for wives, for husbands, and for both. This is a book written for wives.

Thinking back on it, I know authors don’t get to choose the names of their books often, but I think a better name might be The Connection Experiment. After all, when you see a book by women called The Flirtation Experiment and see fireworks on the cover going off, I suspect it’s going to be about buying outfits at Victoria’s Secret, jumping into a shower with your husband, and all manner of physical activities which is what a guy usually has in mind when he thinks about flirting.

That’s not to say the material in here is bad. It’s not. It’s really good. It just isn’t what I was expecting. So looking at the good, these are wives who have decided to invest in their husbands, which is also a plus since usually things are always assumed to be the husband’s fault when many times, it takes two.

There are thirty chapters which means you are meant to go through this book in a month’s time, sort of like a shortened version of The Respect Dare. Both women write fifteen chapters which means they go back and forth between themselves. Each chapter is built on a one-word concept and expounded on and could be read in ten minutes max.

The authors also really open up explaining about difficulties that they have had and about how they worked with their respective husbands. Sometimes, the husbands have a brief sidenote where they will write something and these were always a bonus to read. I kept hoping that there would have been one in every chapter.

All of these are built largely on forming an emotional connection with one’s spouse. Thinking about that, that will work for the men and women because the men tend to think about physical connection and when a woman feels emotionally connected, physical connection is a lot easier for them. It also helps that the women take the initiative in this since frankly, many of us guys don’t really know what to do when it comes to emotional connection.

One amusing part I found was in one of Phylicia’s chapters where she thought God was telling her He wanted her to play video games with her husband, so they played some Mario Party. I know I would be thrilled to marry a woman who wanted to play games with me. I remember hearing a story of a husband who really wanted his wife to go hunting with him and so one day she agreed and they went and sat in the same place all day and absolutely nothing happened. No game came out at all to shoot at.

How did the husband take it? He left saying it was awesome. I can guarantee you then that wife never said, “This is stupid! It’s a waste of time! We could be doing something else!” She just sat there quietly the whole time and he treasured that silent time with her as she participated in his hobby.

And yes, I do realize this needs to be a two-way street, but this is a book for wives so I’m mainly talking to them.

Every marriage can always have room for improvement. I recommend this one for the women out there. Get it and see how it works for you. Husbands can also look through and say what would and would not appeal to them.

In Christ,
Nick Peters
(And I affirm the virgin birth.)

Of Marriages And Diets

Is this a valid reason to abandon marriage? Let’s plunge into the Deeper Waters and find out.

As I was writing yesterday’s blogpost, I had a number of people tag me on Facebook and ask “What do you think of this?” and this was the very picture I was writing about. Today, I’d like to tackle another one that has been making the rounds. It’s another one that sadly convinces me those on the left in this debate really don’t bother to listen to what their opponents say.

First off, the opening claim is just false. Even if you are a skeptic, it should be easy to accept that a redefined marriage of two men or two women is against someone else’s religion is a fact. That doesn’t say anything about the emotional state of the person who holds that religion. The anger is already imposed. (This happens all too often as those of us who are conservative are often accused of having hate towards the other side.)

I don’t go to bed at night steaming about homosexual couples. The issue matters to me, but I have many other things to think about. It’s on the other side unfortunately that if we are told we don’t agree, well here come the hounds out to shut down our businesses and demand our freedom to operate be taken away.

That’s only the start of the problem.

The majority of the real argumentation on the right is not going “The Bible says X, therefore Y should be forbidden.” Most of us are making arguments based on the nature of marriage and a natural law understanding of marriage. Yes. I am sure Pastor Bob down at the local Southern Baptist Church is getting up in the pulpit screaming about what the Bible says and doesn’t have a clue about these natural law arguments, but note I stated the real argumentation. I am not against the Bible, but if one side doesn’t believe it, it has no authority for them, at least in the sense that it doesn’t change their thinking.

Ultimately, when I have seen this debated online, it comes down to what a marriage is. It has always before been understood as two adults of the opposite sex coming together in a union generally with the goal of bringing about and raising children. Now we are told that it doesn’t matter what two consenting adults do.

But why should this be the case?

First off, consider the case of Armin Meiwes. He was a cannibal who was convicted for eating someone. Here’s the relevant part. This person wanted to be eaten. He fully consented to everything. Thus, we have an action between two consenting adults. To make this wrong, you will need another qualifier then. Two consenting adults is not sufficient.

Second, what exactly is an adult? In Biblical times, as was much of the world back then, as soon as the kids hit puberty, it was time to marry them off to someone else. Teenagers in the past would be forming families. Today, having a relationship with a teenager can get you hit with a statutory rape charge. There is nothing magical about the age of 18 that makes someone an adult. We’ve all known adults well over 18 who are essentially children and we’ve all known children younger than 18 who have been forced through circumstances to grow up early and practically function as adults. Also, consider how many children who commit crimes can be tried as adults.

Consent is also not good enough. This is supposed to protect it from applying to children as well, but we constantly make children do things without their consent that is for their good. They go to school, do chores, go to bed, eat healthy, and get vaccinations and medical treatment they don’t like, without their consent. Loving parents who genuinely love their children do this.

Third, we might as well ask about the number two. Why should marriage be limited to two people? The Mormons held to polygamy for some time and were brought before the government for that one. If we are removing the requirement that the people be of the opposite sex, it would be far easier to remove the number. Not only that, there is a much greater historical basis for polygamy than for the redefinition of marriage.

What is being asked is what marriage is and what is the purpose of it. It is not just a union for the happiness of two adults. It is a nation building institution in the sense that these people are the ones capable of bringing about the next generation. The state has all reason to want to promote that as it kind of needs new people to survive. Hypothetically, imagine how much damage we could do to China and Russia if we could launch a biological attack somehow over those entire nations that would sterilize everyone in those nations.

And if marriage is about the continuing of the species, then the state has an interest in promoting the type of union that can do that job. The state has no interest in promoting a same-sex couple as they can never do that. Marriage is not to be meant about the affirming of the people involved, but why the people are coming together in the first place.

Now suppose someone says “Well, Christians can really say that these are the reasons, but we know the real reason is what the Bible says!” Let’s suppose 100% that that’s true for the sake of argument. That doesn’t change the fact that the natural law based arguments are on the table. Those still have to be addressed.

Suppose someone makes a powerful argument to me for atheism and I don’t know how to answer it. It does not work to say, “You only make that argument because you want to be free to live your life sexually however you want.” That could even be 100% true. I am sure there are Christians who hold to Christianity just for the benefits they want to receive and I am sure there are some atheists who hold to atheism because of the sexual freedom.

The argument still has to be addressed.

This meme is not addressing any real arguments. It is not even making one. It is just pointing to motives and trying to read emotions into the other side.

It’s a shame so much has to be written to deal with something because so many do take it seriously.

In Christ,
Nick Peters
(And I affirm the virgin birth)

 

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