You are a delusional Christian if you think you can have a very long courtship and/or engagement and not have sex.

3 Sep

A post at Athol’s from July got me all fired up on this topic.  (So I wrote a post and then sat on it for several weeks.  ANYHOW.)  A mid-20s Christian reader wrote to Athol asking for advice about his relationship with his girlfriend of three years.  Christian Guy hasn’t had intercourse with his girlfriend yet because she wants to wait for marriage, so they’ve decided that guilt over handjobs and occasional oral sex is a more tolerable way to have a relationship.  Most recently, the girlfriend has stated that she wants to cut off ALL sexual contact so she can be sure that CG truly loves her.

Athol’s advice to CG was that he should just go ahead and bang his girlfriend because cutting off sexual contact was her sexual rejection of CG and that a future marriage would not suffer from premarital sex due to their being each other’s first sexual partners.  Additionally, girlfriend’s rejection is a shit test because she wants CG to alpha up and just go for it.

Obviously, as a Christian, I disagree with this advice even though I can understand the reasoning behind it.  (And I do agree that the girlfriend’s rejection is a shit test.)  But that doesn’t really address the underlying issue here, which is why are CG and his girlfriend waiting so long to get married in the first place?  They’re both in their mid-20s, have been together for three years already, and are succumbing to sexual sin in what sounds like an unhappy cycle of hopelessness.  Athol’s blog article doesn’t mention any extenuating circumstances such as abject poverty, or someone is waiting to get out of prison, or someone’s gender reassignment surgery is not yet complete.  And yet CG and his girlfriend are not on schedule to get married for another TWO YEARS.

Does ANYONE in their right mind think that this is a plan for success?!?

The thing about sex is that it only goes in one direction, and it is only designed to have one ending point.  In other words, once you start going down the physical road with someone, it becomes nearly impossible to back up to an earlier point; the only solution is to stop associating with that person completely (i.e., a breakup).  And the ending point of sex is intercourse.  A prolonged stay in Hand Job City or endlessly cruising down Blow Me Bypass is sexually dysfunctional for a healthy couple.  It’s like an Olympic diver climbing to the top of the high dive, bouncing up and down on the springboard, and then…not diving into the water.  Repeatedly.  And convincing yourself that this is a cool way to get close to the water without getting wet.  At some point you’ll either fall in in a way you never intended to, or you’ll psych yourself out when it’s finally time to dive (after two years of training yourself to stop at the end of the board).

I think the church has done a real disservice to its young men and women by going along with the cultural flow of delayed marriage rather than promoting young marriage.  Expecting the vast majority of young Christians to keep their clothes on and hands off for 15-20 years after hitting puberty is ridiculous.  By age 25-ish, a lot of young people are just going to give up on waiting if they don’t see imminent light at the end of the tunnel.  They’ve already waited a decade or more, and the prospect of waiting another decade has the pallor of death.  Besides, all of their friends are doing it and lightning hasn’t struck them yet, plus the church has abortion and homosexuality to worry about.  As long as there are genuine feelings of love and no one gets pregnant and no one gets a disease, is it really that big of a deal? (whispers Satan’s Hamster.)

That said, I think a bigger problem is long courtships and engagements.  When two people are sexually attracted to each other but committed to not having sex until marriage, a four-year courtship followed by a one-year engagement sounds like insanity to me.  Once you’ve gotten the big issues out of the way, like faith, money, character, and goals, and you know that you enjoy each other’s company and are attracted to each other, and others whose opinions you value approve of the match, how much longer do you really need to decide someone is “the one”?  What more could the other person possibly do to prove to you that you should spend the rest of your lives together?  For people who are beyond college-age, I think it’s entirely possible to go from meeting to married within a year to 18 months.  Extending the timeframe longer than that is just setting yourself up for failure, not to mention a lot of gnashing of teeth (as it were) due to having to repress a great deal of your physical desire for each other.

By the way, shorter courtships mean more intentional dating.  You can enjoy the company of a whole lot more people than those who are serious marriage material.  Limit your dating pool to marriageable prospects, and you will give yourself a leg up in the decision-making process.  (Plus, you will help yourself avoid the temptation to get physical with someone you have no intention of marrying.)

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135 Responses to “You are a delusional Christian if you think you can have a very long courtship and/or engagement and not have sex.”

  1. Jenny September 3, 2011 at 11:07 am #

    Spot on Aunt Haley! I can’t begin to imagine how that girl feels. She has a great relationship with a Christian guy. They’re adults, who should be moving on with their lives together. They obviously are tempted and should follow the Apostle Paul’s advice by marrying. Sounds to me like she pulled the plug on sex because she’s giving the guy an ultimatum: Marry me or get lost! Only the guy – and Athol – are too dense to identify it as such.

  2. AnonymousDog September 3, 2011 at 11:29 am #

    Jenny,

    If that girl really wants Christian Guy to marry her, why is the wedding two years off in the distance? I have to wonder if she likes the idea of courtship and engagement more than she likes the idea of actually getting married.

    I completely agree with Haley, chastity is easy when you are 18 and believe that you will meet the Right One in a few months or a couple of years. Once you get past twentyfive and the prospect of years or decades of singleness seem to inexorably stretch out before you, chastity will seem to be a much heavier burden.

  3. terri September 3, 2011 at 11:40 am #

    Great post, Haley. I agree with you. What are they waiting for?

    Very well done!

  4. Scott September 3, 2011 at 12:13 pm #

    I agree with a lot of this, but honestly I find little difference between masturbation, oral and intercourse. If you’re going to do one, then why not do all three? If chastity until marriage has any tangible benefits then it only stands to reason those benefits are diminished or ruined with alternative relief. Likewise if having sexual interaction has any real benefits then limiting yourself in a bizarre and unnatural way isn’t going to give the best results either.

    For me, having attended conservative churches for most of my adult life I’ve seen a number of couples rush in to marriage just to have sex, those marriages are often a disaster. Being a bit older now, and having watching a lot of adult singles struggle with abstinence at adult ages I see little value in that dogma. I’d rather see people enjoy each other in marriage and even before marriage than to advocate an unnatural level of abstinence. I’ve also seen enough people divorce after having a very expensive church wedding to suggest that as a “must” for a healthy Christian marriage. Today I’d tell the young couple to just skip the over-priced church wedding (almost $30,000 these days) and just “tie the knot in Vegas”. Sure, there’s always a few busybodies who will bitch about it
    but learning to ignore busybodies and make your own decisions together is IMO part of a good marriage.

  5. Will S. September 3, 2011 at 12:58 pm #

    Good post. Why do people feel they must wait to marry till they’re done college, etc.? There’s no good reason why young married folks can’t attend college. Of course, if pregnancy happens, that can interfere, but then one can always attend part-time…

  6. Badger September 3, 2011 at 1:40 pm #

    I find the real problem to be that Christian people are trying to live in two worlds – to consume the culture and life path of the secular world while also adhering to “Christian” values (I put it in quotation marks because we’re really talking about the cultural values of the church institution as much as the moral values of Christ himself).

    Thus we get the career path and delayed marriage of modern American, along with the sexual denialism and Nice Guyism of church life. Something’s gotta give, and in most cases I see it’s the woman’s panties.

  7. Blah September 3, 2011 at 2:30 pm #

    I was in a ridiculous LTR from about age 16-21. I was the one who was typically putting the brakes on the physical relationship (which just made her more in love with me initially). While I was gone on a summer internship in college she met someone else and broke it off. I think by that time she had tired of my wishy-washiness around when we were going to get married.

    I learned a few things from the relationship, most of which you have highlighted in this post. When the courtship hits around 1 year, I need to be disciplined enough to break up or put a ring on it (I would argue the same holds true for college couples). If I’m restraining the physical relationship within Godly bounds and the goodies are good enough, I won’t be able to get a ring fast enough.

    Athol’s advice isn’t biblical. What the guy needs to do is elope or move on.

    In my case, I think my reluctance to marry early was more the result of what my mother preached than my church.

  8. Augustine DeCarthage September 3, 2011 at 2:36 pm #

    Great post, Haley. Best yet. As the first commenter said, spot on. And Badger is right, too.

  9. The Man Who Was . . . September 3, 2011 at 3:05 pm #

    Yes, but . . .

    Guys just should not get married until they are 25. Women are as ready for marriage as they’ll ever be by about 20, but men take longer to mature enough to be ready for marriage.

  10. The Man Who Was . . . September 3, 2011 at 3:15 pm #

    One thing that I don’t see talked about much in the church is how psychologically damaging it can be to go without sex into your 30s, especially for men. This isn’t to say that endorsing premarital sex is the answer, everything turns into a war of all against all, but expecting people, and again especially men, to go without sex until they are 35 is just completely ridiculous. The church needs to do more to make sexual purity something practicable.

  11. The Man Who Was . . . September 3, 2011 at 3:23 pm #

    I agree with a lot of this, but honestly I find little difference between masturbation, oral and intercourse.

    For women, intercourse tends to be a huge step up and it is not hard to see why they have been programmed by nature to view it this way: pregnancy.

  12. detinennui32 September 3, 2011 at 3:35 pm #

    Haley: This is your best post yet. OUtstanding. Badger’s right too. Nothing more to add.

  13. Chris September 3, 2011 at 3:41 pm #

    Haley, great post.

    How much of this waiting is driven by (a) playing sexual games such as mutual masturbation while (b) wanting the big wedding?

    Big weddings demonstrate poor stewardship of resources. Girl, get a cream dress, state a date, and let the church throw a party for you after the ceremony.

    Your parents can spend the money they wanted to on the wedding on furnishings or a leasing an apartment.

    We need shorter marital preparation — and more practical advice on survival skills (budgeting, cooking, gardening, managing emotions, working on faith together..

  14. Aunt Haley September 3, 2011 at 4:04 pm #

    Man Who Was–
    One thing that I don’t see talked about much in the church is how psychologically damaging it can be to go without sex into your 30s, especially for men.

    I think that in a lot of churches, the official unofficial position on this goes thus:

    (1) Sex is not a NEED (such as food, air, water, shelter). You will not die from not having sex. As such, sex is an optional feature of life.
    (2) As humans, we are weak to fleshly desires…such as illicit sex.
    (3) However, the Bible guarantees us Christians that

    No temptation has seized you except what is common to man. And God is faithful; he will not let you be tempted beyond what you can bear. But when you are tempted, he will also provide a way out so that you can stand up under it.

    (4) Therefore, every Christian has the capability of maintaining abstinence, and it is your own spiritual failing if you have sex when you are not entitled to by biblical standards.

    As a result, I think a lot of Christians would deny that prolonged abstinence can inflict any psychological damage, because it is a spiritual issue, not a physical or psychological one. Trying to pin psychological damage on abstinence is just Satan’s Hamster at work, trying to make you believe that sin is not sin.

  15. Sorer Bveito September 3, 2011 at 4:17 pm #

    For people who are beyond college-age, I think it’s entirely possible to go from meeting to married within a year to 18 months.

    Haha

    In other religious streams, meeting to married in 6 months is a long time.

  16. Will S. September 3, 2011 at 4:22 pm #

    Spot on again, Haley. Sex may not be a need in the sense that food and water and oxygen and shelter from the elements are physical needs, but we are hard-wired for that kind of intimacy with someone of the opposite sex, and for love, and therefore, we perceive them as needs, unless we’ve been granted Paul’s special gift, of not desiring to be married, in the least. Most of us, though, have not; we’re not all called to be the equivalent of monks and nuns (though if more of us were called to such an existence, maybe it was premature of the Reformers to abolish monasteries and convents).

    The way out of desire for illicit sex… is fulfilment of the desire for sex through the licit, appropriate, God-honouring means. Which means to get married sooner rather than later…

    Badger is right about the Church following the world too closely – and in what way is that? In members of both sexes pursuing higher education and career as all-important goals; previously, it was mostly members of one sex, who were the breadwinners… Of course, I don’t see any 21st century western Christian women choosing to en masse, forego higher education and career, in favour of early marriage, homemaking, and childbearing, so… Down the downward spiral, the West shall continue, since not even in the Church will anyone dare go against the cultural consensus of the world around us…

  17. Butterfly Flower September 3, 2011 at 5:26 pm #

    I’m a young woman struggling with abstinence. I plan to marry my boyfriend in the near future, but I’m not sure if I can remain abstinent for a few years.

    Also, I don’t actually know any devout Christians who were virgins on their wedding night. I feel like it’s hypocritical how so many Christians emphasize purity, when they themselves never followed said advice. It’s not like they faced the same struggles I am facing.

    I’d rather see people enjoy each other in marriage and even before marriage than to advocate an unnatural level of abstinence. I’ve also seen enough people divorce after having a very expensive church wedding to suggest that as a “must” for a healthy Christian marriage. Today I’d tell the young couple to just skip the over-priced church wedding (almost $30,000 these days) and just “tie the knot in Vegas”. Sure, there’s always a few busybodies who will bitch about it
    but learning to ignore busybodies and make your own decisions together is IMO part of a good marriage.

    Is eloping a sin? Or is it only a sin in the Catholic Church?

    I don’t want a big fancy Church wedding; eloping is really the only option I feel comfortable with.

  18. Jenny September 3, 2011 at 5:39 pm #

    AnonymousDog: If he’s the one postponing the wedding two years, then it’s a ultimatum. If she is, then she’s probably sick of him not tying the knot and is preparing to leave him. I’ve seen this happen a number of times.

    Butterfly Flower: I’m 30. If I marry, I hope that I’ll be a virgin on my wedding night. However, I’m all too aware of the temptations. Just want to point out that, even though you plan on marrying your boyfriend, he might not feel the same way. Heartbreak is painful enough without sex playing a role. Please think carefully before jumping into bed with someone who hasn’t committed himself to you. I’m not familiar with the Catholic position on eloping, since I’m more non-denominational/evangelical. However, I’d discourage it. If the guy’s not willing to commit to you in the way your religion prescribes, can you really trust him with your emotions and body?

  19. The Man Who Was . . . September 3, 2011 at 6:25 pm #

    Also, I don’t actually know any devout Christians who were virgins on their wedding night.

    I’ve known quite a few. I’ve also dated quite a few women who were virgins. Something like 10% of women are still virgins on their wedding nights, even in such an age as this. The numbers for men are somewhat lower. Its rare, but its not that rare.

  20. Butterfly Flower September 3, 2011 at 6:35 pm #

    I’m 30. If I marry, I hope that I’ll be a virgin on my wedding night. However, I’m all too aware of the temptations. Just want to point out that, even though you plan on marrying your boyfriend, he might not feel the same way. Heartbreak is painful enough without sex playing a role. Please think carefully before jumping into bed with someone who hasn’t committed himself to you.

    My boyfriend loves me. We’ve been talking about marriage. We would like to get married in the near future. He wouldn’t pump and dump me; he’s a virgin himself.

    I’m not familiar with the Catholic position on eloping, since I’m more non-denominational/evangelical. However, I’d discourage it. If the guy’s not willing to commit to you in the way your religion prescribes, can you really trust him with your emotions and body?

    What gives me the right to tell him his denomination of Christianity is wrong? I’m sure he’d convert for me, but I don’t have the heart to force him to. I wouldn’t feel comfortable starting off a marriage with emotional blackmail.

  21. Jenny September 3, 2011 at 6:41 pm #

    “Also, I don’t actually know any devout Christians who were virgins on their wedding night.”

    How many have you asked? I know dozens and dozens. Others I have a pretty good hunch that they were.

    “What gives me the right to tell him his denomination of Christianity is wrong? I’m sure he’d convert for me, but I don’t have the heart to force him to. I wouldn’t feel comfortable starting off a marriage with emotional blackmail.”

    Oh, I wasn’t suggesting that you force him that way. I actually assumed he was Catholic too. The issue is you doing what you believe is right, not you forcing him into anything. It’s good that you’re not pressuring him into converting, but that raises another issue: Have you really thought through being in a mixed marriage? If you have sex, but he doesn’t convert, how will that affect you?

  22. Scott September 3, 2011 at 10:34 pm #

    Personally, I’ve never been in the habit of asking people at church if they were virgins on their wedding night. I would expect to get a lot of half-truth if not outright bull if I asked people a direct question like that. In fact, I would expect to be reprimanded by genuine professional ministry leaders if I put dozens of people on the spot asking that kind of personal question. While I can’t speak for any specific couple, the statistics do tell us that conservative evangelical Christians have more unity on actually having premarital sex than on almost any other religious issue.

    One of the most irritating things I’ve experienced at church is listening to ministry leaders tell jokes about real-life 30 year old virgins. And I’ve heard this sort of thing at various churches I’ve attended. I think it’s severely unprofessional and counter productive to their public challenge of chastity and abstinence; and it causes me to doubt if those leaders even believe in their own messages on these matters.

  23. imnobody September 4, 2011 at 3:26 am #

    The problem is that Christian people are trying to be Christian in a world especially designed with non-Christian and anti-Christian principles. It is delusional to think this strategy can succeed. Christian people should have a separate society (like Orthodox Jews) for Christian principles to be applicable.

    This is the only way to go and this society would survive after the imminent decline of secular society. Instead of that, Christian people are half Christian and half secular, because it is difficult to resist the dominant Zeitgeist. What is worse: they try to be Christian in a secular society.

    This is the problem with Haley’s advice. I agree that, for this couple, a good idea may be to get married. But, when you say, “Christian people should have short courtship” in general” is when I see that you are trying to make a Christian building with anti-Christian bricks.

    The rationale behind Haley’s advice is that people should follow apostle Paul’s advice and getting married instead of “burning” with sin. So far, all right. There is only a problem: MARRIAGE DOES NOT EXIST ANYMORE.

    When Paul talked about marriage, he meant “a union between man and woman for life”. You had the choice to enter marriage but you didn’t have the option to exit marriage (“till death do us part”). When asked about divorce from some pharisees, Jesus said it in other words: “Therefore what God has joined together, let no one separate”.

    This is not possible anymore. The think we call “marriage” is only a glorified cohabitation. A temporal arrangement that only lasts while two parts want it this way. It’s a different thing than Paul’s marriage. The only thing in common is the name. If I have infatuation for a fuck buddy, I can call this “love”. But this is completely different to the love I have for God. The fact that we use the same word does not imply that they are the same concepts. Paul’s marriage and today’s marriage are different beasts with the same name. In other words, Paul’s words are not applicable to today’s marriage.

    Even if you get “married” in the Church, your spouse can divorce you whenever s/he finds convenient (or you can do it). In fact, marriages between Christian have the same divorce rate than secular marriages.

    With the possibility of divorce, everything changes. People are less willing to work about their problems. Stay-at-home moms cannot be sure that her husband won’t leave them for a younger model and leave them in poverty. So women must rely on their own. So women have to study. So “marriages” have to wait until women stop studying. So courtships must be long. So celibacy is hard to follow.

    You see the pattern? It’s a system! Everything is connected. Christian people want to change one link of the chain without changing all other links.

    I think Badger said that “marriages” between people who get married to have sex are a disaster. And I agree. But you must realize that “today’s marriages” are not “Paul’s marriages”. When divorce is forbidden, people know they only have a shot to be happy so they choose a partner based on his/her character, instead of infatuation, chemistry or sexual desire. So these marriages last longer. In Japan, society of arranged marriages, the divorce rate is 2% (in America 50%).

    So you can’t make a Christian omelet with anti-Christian eggs. Everything is a system. Instead of relying on secular marriage, Christian should implement a Christian version of marriage (without divorce) in a separate society for the Paul’s advice (and Haley’s advice) to make sense. Explaining how this would work is long and this message is already too long.

  24. Will S. September 4, 2011 at 5:01 am #

    @ Scott: “One of the most irritating things I’ve experienced at church is listening to ministry leaders tell jokes about real-life 30 year old virgins. And I’ve heard this sort of thing at various churches I’ve attended. I think it’s severely unprofessional and counter productive to their public challenge of chastity and abstinence; and it causes me to doubt if those leaders even believe in their own messages on these matters.”

    Oh, that’s awful! Dismaying, indeed; yes, we Christians may not all be perfect in staying abstinent till married, but we should continue to strive towards it, each of us, and institutionally, the church must not join with the world in mocking chastity; that’s wicked! Indeed, I’d doubt any so-called Christian leader who made fun of virgins; I’d stop taking anything he said seriously, ever again.

  25. Will S. September 4, 2011 at 5:05 am #

    @ imnobody: But we are called to be the light of the world, and the salt of the earth; we can’t very well do that by adopting a separatist mentality and withdrawing from the world; how much influence on the culture do the Old Order Amish have? None! Nor would we, if we followed their example; at least we have the chance to do some good if we stay, even if some degree of corruption by the world is inevitable.

    I agree with you, that we need to do better at resisting the ways of the world, but we can’t up and leave it, as doing so surely goes against the spirit of Christ’s Great Commission, to go into the four corners of the world, bringing the Gospel to all peoples.

  26. imnobody September 4, 2011 at 6:15 am #

    “@ imnobody: But we are called to be the light of the world, and the salt of the earth; we can’t very well do that by adopting a separatist mentality and withdrawing from the world; ”

    (You seem to equate “world” and “earth” with “secular society”)

    First things first. Before being the light of the world, we need to live a Christian lifestyle. First, we have to be Christian ourselves, then we have to be an example for other people. We cannot be an example when the divorce rate between Christian people is slightly worse than the divorce rate of atheists (a fact that atheist people LOVE to remember us). What example are we given as witnesses? We are the darkness of the world when it comes to marriage. People can see us and say: “See? All this people that say that are Christian and this makes no difference”.

    “how much influence on the culture do the Old Order Amish have? None! Nor would we, if we followed their example; ”

    You can have a separate society without separating physically. As long as Christian are a fair percentage of the population, as long as we vote, as long as we have businesses, we will have influence on the culture. Now, it’s the culture who is having influence on us.

    “at least we have the chance to do some good if we stay, even if some degree of corruption by the world is inevitable.”

    Some degree? Let’s say “a 90% degree”? When you read Christian blogs like Haley’s, you realize how much Christian people have absorbed and internalize secular values. I am not an example: I have done this too.

    “I agree with you, that we need to do better at resisting the ways of the world, but we can’t up and leave it, as doing so surely goes against the spirit of Christ’s Great Commission, to go into the four corners of the world, bringing the Gospel to all peoples.”

    The Great Comission can be fulfilled in non-Christian societies (like China). I don’t see why it is not possible in a secular society. You have a fundamental confusion. Preaching the Gospel and being witnesses of Christ does not imply integrating in secular society.

    I have put an example. Why are Churches relying on secular marriage? Holy Matrimony is different than secular marriage but Churches are equating both.

    Until we don’t separate us from all these secular institutions, we will be on our way to extinction. As I said, it is delusional to think that we can change a link of the chain without changing all the system. It’s like you want to change a piece of an analogical clock for the equivalent piece of a digital clock WITHOUT CHANGING THE WHOLE CLOCK: only one piece. Then you want things to work.

    Number of Christians in Europe and America are steadily decreasing. Obviously, our strategy is not working. It’s not that we are winning the secular culture for Christ: the secular culture is beating us.

  27. Jennifer September 4, 2011 at 2:32 pm #

    I disagree about having a separate society, unless Nobody really was describing only being separated emotionally. In that instance, he’s absolutely correct.

    Great post, Haley.

    “One of the most irritating things I’ve experienced at church is listening to ministry leaders tell jokes about real-life 30 year old virgins. And I’ve heard this sort of thing at various churches I’ve attended. I think it’s severely unprofessional and counter productive to their public challenge of chastity and abstinence; and it causes me to doubt if those leaders even believe in their own messages on these matters”

    Amen!!

  28. Svar September 4, 2011 at 2:35 pm #

    Three years?! Dude needs to start laying down some pipe.

  29. Svar September 4, 2011 at 2:38 pm #

    “I disagree about having a separate society, unless Nobody really was describing only being separated emotionally. In that instance, he’s absolutely correct.”

    I dunno, I think nobody has right.

  30. Jennifer September 4, 2011 at 2:39 pm #

    “members of both sexes pursuing higher education and career”

    There’s nothing wrong with women doing the former, or the latter, as long as it’s NOT all-important to them.

  31. Jennifer September 4, 2011 at 2:52 pm #

    Incorrect by Biblical command, svar. And it’s absolutely incorrect that we can no longer have marriage as God and Paul commanded it. There are numerous people doing this, and it’s them who will survive.

  32. Svar September 4, 2011 at 3:41 pm #

    Jen, I meant that CG should marry his girlfriend and go roll in the hay-not before marriage. Regardless, he needs to nail her either way.

    As for Imnobody’s comment, he is saying that marriage as God and Paul commanded is reserved for Christians who actually take their faith seriously.

  33. Jennifer September 4, 2011 at 3:47 pm #

    He does not need to “nail” her before marriage, Svar (you said “either way”); they’ve done that in half-assed ways enough. And if this is a shit test from her, it’s a dead-serious one, not the emotional-blip type made in passing.

    “As for Imnobody’s comment, he is saying that marriage as God and Paul commanded is reserved for Christians who actually take their faith seriously”

    Amen to that! He’s correct, we cannot mesh mentally with secularism.

  34. OTC September 4, 2011 at 6:17 pm #

    We cannot be an example when the divorce rate between Christian people is slightly worse than the divorce rate of atheists (a fact that atheist people LOVE to remember us).

    I’ve heard it argued from Christians that, if you measure the divorce rate from true practicing Christians, then it really is significantly lower. Since I am ex-C, I’m going to argue a bit here against what I personally believe.

    Then again, this means whoever decides what a “true” Christian, based on the criteria, could then define a divorce rate suitable to their political goals. All they have to do is analyze the data, figure out what definition of “true Christian” produces the desired results, insist on that, and then viola!

    (To me, a true Christian walks the walk and talks the talk, occasionally sins by making honest mistakes or getting caught up in the moment, but always repents; never intentionally sins with any medium or long-range premeditation. Sadly… I have not met many. All I ever see is grace-abusers. Yes, I am learning about this.)

    Either way, excellent posts, imnobody, I learned a lot. Though, based on your previous posts I’m not sure if you count as one to my (admittedly strict) definition.

  35. Jennifer September 4, 2011 at 7:19 pm #

    Well said OFC! Nobody is at least partly correct, regardless of the divorce rate. I do think far more serious Christians stay married than not.

  36. Jennifer September 4, 2011 at 7:20 pm #

    Whoops, OTC I meant.

  37. Butterfly Flower September 4, 2011 at 8:30 pm #

    (To me, a true Christian walks the walk and talks the talk, occasionally sins by making honest mistakes or getting caught up in the moment, but always repents; never intentionally sins with any medium or long-range premeditation. Sadly… I have not met many. All I ever see is grace-abusers. Yes, I am learning about this.)

    I’m not an ex-Christian, but lately I’ve noticed that nearly all of my encounters with Christians tend to be hurtful. I suffer from severe [but fortunately well managed] autoimmune arthritis. Christians always tell me such insensitive things about my illness; like I wouldn’t be suffering if I believed in God more; or if I had been a better Christian, God would have healed me by now. I’ve become afraid to talk to Christians IRL.

    I think a lot of Christians these days are, well, doing the whole “Christianity” thing wrong. Especially the ones who practice all that New Age-y faith healing BS.

    Oh, I wasn’t suggesting that you force him that way. I actually assumed he was Catholic too. The issue is you doing what you believe is right, not you forcing him into anything. It’s good that you’re not pressuring him into converting, but that raises another issue: Have you really thought through being in a mixed marriage? If you have sex, but he doesn’t convert, how will that affect you?

    I’m the product of a mixed marriage. I assure you, they’re not doomed to fail. & my boyfriend is still a Christian.

    Anyway, I did some Googling and found a few studies that show Catholics are more likely than Protestants to engage in premarital sex.

    IRL I never met any virgin Catholic guys [hence, why I’m dating outside of my denomination, My boyfriend was the first 20-something virgin guy I encountered! Plus, he’s real cute, and sweet… *gushes*]

    Sometimes I wonder if all the strict “no sex ever, abstinence!” stuff actually makes teens more likely to engage in pre-marital sex. Like, a reverse-psychology thing.

  38. Svar September 4, 2011 at 8:35 pm #

    Betrachten sie die einlinie Schleppangel, beschwerende ungefaehr gleiche alte scheiss.

  39. Jennifer September 4, 2011 at 8:56 pm #

    Nailed many points, BF.

  40. Svar September 4, 2011 at 9:01 pm #

    “Nailed many points, BF.”

    Nein. Der Kobold hoert nie auf, aus ihrem Mund heraus zu scheissen.

  41. The Man Who Was . . . September 4, 2011 at 9:02 pm #

    We cannot be an example when the divorce rate between Christian people is slightly worse than the divorce rate of atheists

    Vox Day dispensed with this one. Those numbers were comparing the percentage of all Christians who have ever been divorced to percentage of all atheists who have ever been divorced. Except atheists don’t get married as often as Christians. So, when calculated as a percentage of those who have ever been married, Christians actually have a lower divorce rate than atheists.

  42. Butterfly Flower September 4, 2011 at 9:03 pm #

    @Svar:

    Can you PLEASE STOP cyber-bulling me?

    I’m not a troll. I don’t know why you hate me so much, but your nastiness has crossed the line.

    If you don’t have anything nice to say, don’t say anything at all.

    FYI, good Christians don’t cyber bully.

  43. Aunt Haley September 4, 2011 at 9:06 pm #

    Svar–
    Post in English or not at all. Stop being an obnoxious show-off. My tolerance for you is rapidly waning.

  44. Will S. September 4, 2011 at 10:02 pm #

    Heh heh heh.

  45. Butterfly Flower September 4, 2011 at 10:37 pm #

    Heh heh heh.

    Cyberbullying isn’t funny. I’ve asked Svar to stop numerous times, but instead he’s gotten worse ! I honestly don’t know what to do. He cyberbullies me on Dalrock as well.

    …I just hope Svar isn’t bullying me because I take Methotrexate. I know Catholics aren’t supposed to take it [because it causes temporary sterilization and all] but it’s the only DMARD that works for me. I’ve had [compassion lacking] Catholics get on my case about it before. I never understood why; I’m not married so it’s not like my temporary sterilization even matters.

  46. Chris September 4, 2011 at 11:25 pm #

    Hey Svar:

    I know of a fair number of women who are virgins. We should not tease women and men who are trying to be faithful and celibate.

    BF:

    Talk to your family about getting married in a small ceremony. Do not shut them out. (But you have heard me say that elsewhere).

    Jenny:

    Good on you. I think Alte said over at TC (where I am restraining my Calvinist Zeal — I have edited out my snark from replies) that celibacy can be a blessing. If you are single, you can do things you cannot do when you are raising kids.

  47. Jennifer September 4, 2011 at 11:31 pm #

    Greatly said, Chris :)

  48. The Man Who Was . . . September 4, 2011 at 11:36 pm #

    Just to clarify, I don’t think lack of sex, per se, is psychologically harmful. Rather, not having that tangible evidence that you are valued as a sexual being is what tends to really screw with your mind. In other words, at least for men, the problem tends to be virginity more than celibacy.

  49. Jennifer September 5, 2011 at 12:49 am #

    That’s very aptly put, Man.

  50. grizzledwolf September 5, 2011 at 3:10 am #

    I usually lurk, but as a (badly) practicing Catholic, I must point something out:

    “I know Catholics aren’t supposed to take it [because it causes temporary sterilization and all] but it’s the only DMARD that works for me.”

    One thing I currently hate about the current state of the Church in the West is how poorly-catechized the rank-and-file are. Catholics are not prohibited from taking medication that temporarily causes sterilization if:

    1. It is not taken specifically to cause sterilization. (The principle of Double Effect.)

    2. There is no other alternative.

    Furthermore, since this same person claimed that the Church has something against eloping, there is no doctrinal prohibition (as far as I know) against eloping. If it is a sin, it is one of prudence, as one risks dishonoring one’s mother and father. As for the fancy church wedding, all that are really needed for a valid Church wedding are the couple and two witnesses of good standing. (I was shocked to learn too that technically, the priest being there is optional, just as I was to learn that an atheist can baptize someone into the Faith for as long as he knows the formula. The priest is mainly there because he’s usually the only one who knows the forms of the ritual.) The massive expenditure comes in the extra expenditures of flowers, bridal and bridesmaid dresses and all that miscellany.

  51. Svar September 5, 2011 at 4:42 am #

    “I just hope Svar isn’t bullying me because I take Methotrexate.”

    Umm, nah? Why would I care if you were to take Methotrexate?

    “I know Catholics aren’t supposed to take it [because it causes temporary sterilization and all] but it’s the only DMARD that works for me. ”

    Look at what Grizzled Man said. It’s okay. The Church would rather have you alive and infertile than dead and infertile by default.

  52. Svar September 5, 2011 at 4:43 am #

    “Hey Svar:

    I know of a fair number of women who are virgins. We should not tease women and men who are trying to be faithful and celibate.”

    When did I do this? With the “he should just naile her” line? I was joking.

  53. Svar September 5, 2011 at 4:45 am #

    “Heh heh heh.”

    Haha, you understand what I said?

  54. Svar September 5, 2011 at 4:47 am #

    “He cyberbullies me on Dalrock as well.”

    Aren’t we being a little dramatic now? I posted to one Solomon II link.

  55. Will S. September 5, 2011 at 7:17 am #

    I’m just enjoyin’ the show.

  56. Will S. September 5, 2011 at 7:20 am #

    And yeah, I used a translation program, Svar, so I know what you said. I think the others know, too, doing the same as me.

  57. Svar September 5, 2011 at 7:26 am #

    Ahh, Will. Don’t you know Dutch or something? I thought you understood because of that.

  58. Will S. September 5, 2011 at 7:29 am #

    “Don’t you know Dutch or something?”

    Klein beetje.

  59. OTC September 5, 2011 at 9:45 am #

    I’m not an ex-Christian, but lately I’ve noticed that nearly all of my encounters with Christians tend to be hurtful. I suffer from severe [but fortunately well managed] autoimmune arthritis. Christians always tell me such insensitive things about my illness; like I wouldn’t be suffering if I believed in God more; or if I had been a better Christian, God would have healed me by now. I’ve become afraid to talk to Christians IRL.

    Your experiences parallel mine, which is why I’m ex.

    I have rheumatoid arthritis too (seronegative- it failed to show up on blood tests). My son has type 1 diabetes, so I am all too familiar with autoimmune disorders and the judgment you often get from it. You learn to play your cards very close to your chest. If people see my son’s insulin pump, I just say it’s a medical device that keeps him alive.

    Rather, not having that tangible evidence that you are valued as a sexual being is what tends to really screw with your mind. In other words, at least for men, the problem tends to be virginity more than celibacy.

    This is exactly right. I would say the pain of not being valued as a sexual being, for most men, is similar to being only valued as a sexual being, for women. We want, and need both.

    Sometimes I wonder if all the strict “no sex ever, abstinence!” stuff actually makes teens more likely to engage in pre-marital sex. Like, a reverse-psychology thing.

    Speaking for myself, no. Maybe I was just too gullible as a kid and believed it all. I think abstinence-only education usually causes men to actually undermine their own value as sexual being, because the message is 100% negative (this is bad, don’t do this, etc.) and positive messages (how to be attractive, what to do, how date properly) are entirely missing in both Christian and secular circles.

  60. Svar September 5, 2011 at 10:06 am #

    “Klein beetje.”

    I see. Same thing with my German.

  61. Svar September 5, 2011 at 10:07 am #

    @ OTC

    Is that your real picture?

  62. Nautilus September 5, 2011 at 10:27 am #

    So true. I was about ready to get married after knowing a girl for a month. Rocking hourglass figure, tall, atheltic, high IQ, working her way through college and very interested in me sexually. However, I found out she has been drinking at a bar with her girlfriends, (underage) which confirmed my theory that she had a rebellious streak. A treatable, albeit incurable serotonin deficiency. Also a former boyfriend that she refuses to completely cut ties with, i.e. Facebook and phone calls.

    Three strikes and you’re out. Dang girl, I thought you really had a lot going for you.

  63. Butterfly Flower September 5, 2011 at 4:20 pm #

    Your experiences parallel mine, which is why I’m ex.

    I understand. I’m not really sure if I have the strength to remain a Christian…

    I have rheumatoid arthritis too (seronegative- it failed to show up on blood tests).

    Did your Rhumetologist genetically test you? My arthritis didn’t show up on blood work at first, but it showed up on genetic testing.

    My son has type 1 diabetes, so I am all too familiar with autoimmune disorders and the judgment you often get from it. You learn to play your cards very close to your chest. If people see my son’s insulin pump, I just say it’s a medical device that keeps him alive.

    Oh my goodness. I admire your strength; managing your son’s illness along with your own. My mother had trouble locating a support group for parents of children with chronic illnesses. It seems like chronic illnesses are just swept under the rug; especially within the Christian community.

    Concerning judgment, I’ve often heard Christians complain about children with IEPs “Their parents just want their child to receive special treatment/attention”. When I first got sick, I didn’t want my classmates to know I had a medical IEP; I was embarrassed. Besides, suggesting I used my swollen wrists as a get-out-of-jail-free card for class assignments is kinda evil.

    Speaking for myself, no. Maybe I was just too gullible as a kid and believed it all. I think abstinence-only education usually causes men to actually undermine their own value as sexual being, because the message is 100% negative (this is bad, don’t do this, etc.) and positive messages (how to be attractive, what to do, how date properly) are entirely missing in both Christian and secular circles.

    For awhile I also believed the “don’t do this, don’t do that” stuff, but then I realized none-of the abstinence teachers actually followed said advice. I have a boyfriend; do they honestly expect me not to make out with him; not to experience lust? [Apparently the emotion of Lust is a sin…] I’ve even been told pre-marital kissing will increase chances of divorce. *facepalm*

    I didn’t feel like it undermined my value as a sexual being; it just made me very confused. “Does God really care about what I do with my boyfriend?”

  64. Athol Kay: Married Man Sex Life September 5, 2011 at 5:04 pm #

    Two points:

    (1) The reader in question is Buddist.

    (2) I didn’t say “just bang your girlfriend”, I told him to get married, or break it off.

    So either get it together properly or call it quits. If your anniversary is coming up, a slightly sappy way of doing it is to announce that you are booking a hotel room for a night/weekend away to make “the first real time more special and memorable, and to set a wedding date.”

  65. imnobody September 5, 2011 at 5:38 pm #

    I’m too sleepy to explain what I meant to have a separate society. But I’ll try. I think all the institutions related to family and ideology should be separate. By contrast, the institutions related to everything else should be integrated.The body to Caesar. The spirit/mind to God.

    It’s similar to Pillarisation. http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Pillarisation. Please read this Wikipedia article. Although we have to include the new technologies.

    Public Administration, Private Companies, Transport and Politics would be integrated with every American citizen (the economy) but everything related to the mind should be set apart: school, mass media, etc.

    This way we can reduce the constant secularist indoctrination that kids decide every step of the way. This cannot been totally suppressed but it can be drastically reduced.

    Besides Pillarisation, marriage should be set apart. We should reject secular marriage and establish a new kind of contract called “Holy Matrimony” which would be a private contract between parts and it would not be recognized by the State as marriage. This contract should establish the obligations that Paul said about spouses. This contract would be for life and should have penalties to the one who breaks it. A Church would not marry a couple if they have not signed the contract. (This may be impossible with our legal system but we can try to do a contract as much similar to this as possible)

    I know it is hard and it seems weird, but it should be tried. I speak from a country which was known to be one of the most Catholic countries of the world. We evangelized half world (sure you know what I am talking about). I am 41. When I was a kid, the society was deeply Christian.

    Then, the secularists took control of the media, the school (including university), the government, the political parties. Twenty years afterward, most of the youth defines themselves as agnostic (which here means “atheist”) and saying “I am a Christian” is like saying “I’m dumb and chump”. Every discussion about religion is preceded by “I am an agnostic and…” because everyone wants to make sure nobody thinks they are part of this despised group. Christian are ashamed to be Christians. We are in the closet now.

    Do you think this could not happen to you? This could be America’s future. American Christianity can go the way of the dodo. This remembers me when Fuji said that it was impossible for digital photography to succeed and they processed millions and millions of roll of films. They enter in denial and they disappeared. God helps the ones who help themselves.

  66. Jennifer September 5, 2011 at 6:03 pm #

    Imnobody, your explanation is sound in just the first paragraph. Thanks.

    “I’m not really sure if I have the strength to remain a Christian”

    You do, honey; never follow His followers’ behavior above His. And remember the verse, “Though none go with me, still I will follow..”

  67. Svar September 5, 2011 at 6:05 pm #

    @ Imnobody

    Good plan, man. I’m guessing the country that you’re from is Ireland.

    Btw, I’m sorry for misunderstanding your points over at TC. I lightly skimmed through what you wrote and assumed that you were a feminist or leftist. When I read it thoroughly I realized that I agreed with most if not all of your points.

  68. Svar September 5, 2011 at 6:28 pm #

    @ Imnobody

    There is no guarantee that the Church will stay in one place for long-it has largely disappeared from North Africa, Anatolia, and the Middle-East. It’s likely that it will disappear from North America and most of the West. Hopefully, Rome will stand strong as it has done for 2000 years.

  69. Aunt Haley September 5, 2011 at 9:48 pm #

    Athol–
    1) I didn’t think Buddhists had proscriptions against premarital sex…?
    2) Thanks for the clarification, but you still advocated premarital sex.

  70. The Man Who Was . . . September 5, 2011 at 10:03 pm #

    Haley:

    Watch this. A classic:

  71. grizzledwolf September 6, 2011 at 2:40 am #

    “I understand. I’m not really sure if I have the strength to remain a Christian…”

    I’m not sure anybody truly has. That is why we pray. Or at least we should. Grace is the strength of the Christian life.

    “It seems like chronic illnesses are just swept under the rug; especially within the Christian community.”

    Really? The weekly healing Masses and almost monthly parish medical missions I keep seeing says otherwise.

    “For awhile I also believed the “don’t do this, don’t do that” stuff, but then I realized none-of the abstinence teachers actually followed said advice. I have a boyfriend; do they honestly expect me not to make out with him; not to experience lust? [Apparently the emotion of Lust is a sin…] I’ve even been told pre-marital kissing will increase chances of divorce.”

    And once more, poor catechism rears its ugly head. Did your abstinence teachers even mention why we must abstain? Because, the high regard we hold for the creative act is at the center of the rejection of frivolous sexuality. As for the “emotion” of Lust, (which is not an emotion so much as a physical reaction), to be tempted is not the sin. It is the giving in that is. If you don’t experience Eros with your lover, then something is wrong with you. It is the misuse of Eros that is the sin.

    Geez, did your teachers read anything more profound than an abstinence manual?

  72. Athol Kay: Married Man Sex Life September 6, 2011 at 3:33 am #

    I said they were already having sex and needed to make a decision one way or the other. The exact same point you make.

    You even agreed she was testing him by cutting off the handjobs etc.

    If you disagree with me thats fine, but please do me the courtesy of disagreeing with my actual point of view if you are going to name me in a post. Apart from the rant that the church damages relationships in your post, our posts cover the same essental points.

  73. Butterfly Flower September 6, 2011 at 4:16 am #

    And once more, poor catechism rears its ugly head. Did your abstinence teachers even mention why we must abstain? Because, the high regard we hold for the creative act is at the center of the rejection of frivolous sexuality.

    I was led to believe only martial sex is sacred.

    At the same time, I’ve been told by many Catholics that pre-marital sex is held to a different standard […widespread poor catechism?] Relationship sex > frivolous sex.

    So basically I was taught:

    * Good young Catholic couples sit around playing Checkers and Parcheesi. [I’m not being sarcastic, my abstinence lesson actually recommended playing board games]

    * [unofficially] I can touch my boyfriend as much as I want, as long as I confess to a Priest before I get married.

    The last option seems to be the most common practice. When I was looking for a boyfriend I encountered more virgin Protestants and Evangelicals than Catholics.

    Geez, did your teachers read anything more profound than an abstinence manual?

    They also showed us a graphic video about STDs. Did you know babies could be born with Gonorrhea? *shudders*

    & Grizzledwolf; are you sure eloping isn’t a sin in the Catholic Church? Technically Catholic couples are supposed to take pre-marital classes [which could take up to a year to finish] and receive extensive interviews/counseling.

    …I feel like those things would get in the way of eloping.

  74. TimP September 6, 2011 at 4:27 am #

    @grizzledwolf
    “And once more, poor catechism rears its ugly head. … Geez, did your teachers read anything more profound than an abstinence manual?”

    This is an illustration of what I suspect is the biggest problem in the modern Western Churches: many Christian “teachers” are basically ignorant rubes. As evidence of this I’ll point out that the Da Vinci Code apparently challenged large numbers of Christian’s faith. It’s a poorly researched conspiracy by all accounts, but still people actually find it challenging. I’ve seen other absurd and poorly-thought-out arguments presented by anti-theists as if they where actually a good arguments, and treated by Christians as if they where as well.

    As a result the Church has largely abandoned the intellectual sphere and jumped on the “Just have Faith” band-wagon.

    I also tend to agree with imnobody’s suggestion of separating the Christian concept of marriage from the secular. If I find a girl who’s agreeable to it I will seriously consider not getting “legally married”; I’d have a ceremony, exchange vows (to my mind the only essential part), exchange rings, and throw a party for friends and family, but not bother with the whole legal side of it.

    A big part of this is simply that being legally married lends legitimacy to the Government’s definition of marriage partly because of the ease of divorce and partly because I suspect that here in Australia we’ll sometime soon start recognizing gay “marriages”. While I generally hold to the fairly libertarian political attitudes including that other people’s sex lives are between them, their various partners, and God, I don’t want my actions (or tax money for that matter) legitimizing what I consider to be immoral lifestyles.

    Back to the main topic at hand I also don’t understand the long courtship and especially engagements that are so popular now days (at least among people committed to chastity). It’s bad enough that you spent 3-5 years deciding whether to get married or not, and now that you’ve finally made up your mind you’re going to put it off for another 12-24 months?

  75. Butterfly Flower September 6, 2011 at 4:45 am #

    As a result the Church has largely abandoned the intellectual sphere and jumped on the “Just have Faith” band-wagon.

    “Just have faith!” leads to questions being frowned upon. A good Christian wouldn’t need clarification.

    ….no wonder I’m so catechized.

  76. dragnet September 6, 2011 at 7:51 am #

    “You are a delusional human being if you think you can have a very long courtship and/or engagement and not have sex.”

    Fixt.

  77. OTC September 6, 2011 at 11:03 am #

    As for the “emotion” of Lust, (which is not an emotion so much as a physical reaction), to be tempted is not the sin. It is the giving in that is. If you don’t experience Eros with your lover, then something is wrong with you. It is the misuse of Eros that is the sin. Geez, did your teachers read anything more profound than an abstinence manual?

    I had an abstinence class in 7th grade, thanks to Dr. Dobson (shudder). Matthew 2:28 clearly states that if you experience lust, it is adultery, and adultery is a sin. You can sing until the cows come home that it really doesn’t mean that and how we’re poorly educated, but it’s too late for me, and BF seems to have the same “education” that I did.

    BF: Did your Rhumetologist genetically test you? My arthritis didn’t show up on blood work at first, but it showed up on genetic testing.

    No, it’s was a dx based on multiple symptoms alone.

    My mother had trouble locating a support group for parents of children with chronic illnesses. It seems like chronic illnesses are just swept under the rug; especially within the Christian community. Concerning judgment, I’ve often heard Christians complain about children with IEPs “Their parents just want their child to receive special treatment/attention”. When I first got sick, I didn’t want my classmates to know I had a medical IEP; I was embarrassed. Besides, suggesting I used my swollen wrists as a get-out-of-jail-free card for class assignments is kinda evil.

    I hear you on the IEP thing. People see me giving my son some juice and may think it’s “special treatment”, when it’s really to prevent a bad low blood sugar which can cause a seizure. He has SPD/Aspergers too, which is even more difficult to deal with, and more misunderstood than the diabetes.

    For awhile I also believed the “don’t do this, don’t do that” stuff, but then I realized none-of the abstinence teachers actually followed said advice.

    You were wiser than me, then. I believed it for way too long, and trusted people to not be hypocrites. None of them came clean about making mistakes themselves, or any sort of shades of grey, it was Do This Or Else. By the time I realized the advice wasn’t really followed, I was already gone.

  78. Jennifer September 6, 2011 at 1:39 pm #

    “Matthew 2:28 clearly states that if you experience lust, it is adultery”

    IF you are married. And being tempted isn’t the same as giving in to lust/

  79. Dex September 6, 2011 at 8:10 pm #

    @TimP – you should check the palimony laws where you live – just exchanging vows, even without the paperwork, would get you on the hook in some places.

  80. Butterfly Flower September 6, 2011 at 8:52 pm #

    I had an abstinence class in 7th grade, thanks to Dr. Dobson (shudder). Matthew 2:28 clearly states that if you experience lust, it is adultery, and adultery is a sin. You can sing until the cows come home that it really doesn’t mean that and how we’re poorly educated, but it’s too late for me, and BF seems to have the same “education” that I did.

    I’m Catholic, so I was unfortunately taught all the peculiar Catholic hang-ups pertaining to semen. Like an ancient Phonetician fertility cult, the Magisterium dictates every drop of semen is sacred. Because of this, any [pre-marital] erection triggered by lust is a sin; semen is too sacred to be frivolously wasted.

    So basically it’s a sin to fool around with your boyfriend if it triggers an erection, but it’s not a sin if you’re practicing orgasm denial.

    …..& you people wonder why I’m so confused.

  81. Mark Slater September 6, 2011 at 9:44 pm #

    GREAT post, Aunt Haley, with impeccable analysis, too. Very intelligent comments, also.

    “I also tend to agree with imnobody’s suggestion of separating the Christian concept of marriage from the secular. If I find a girl who’s agreeable to it I will seriously consider not getting “legally married”; I’d have a ceremony, exchange vows (to my mind the only essential part), exchange rings, and throw a party for friends and family, but not bother with the whole legal side of it.”

    That option is sounding better all the time, Tim. Or, you and your beloved could depart on a vessel headed for open sea, approach the captain and say, “Marry us.”

  82. Kathy September 6, 2011 at 10:25 pm #

    “Besides, all of their friends are doing it and lightning hasn’t struck them yet, plus the church has abortion and homosexuality to worry about. As long as there are genuine feelings of love and no one gets pregnant and no one gets a disease, is it really that big of a deal? (whispers Satan’s Hamster.)”

    Exactly Haley, well said.
    Very good post. (as many others here have said)

    Now to Butterfly Flower. Time to grow up a bit. Svar is just teasing and having a bit of fun. Don’t be so touchy, just give it back. He is a good natured kind of guy. ;)

    ” BF:I just hope Svar isn’t bullying me because I take Methotrexate. I know Catholics aren’t supposed to take it [because it causes temporary sterilization and all] but it’s the only DMARD that works for me. I’ve had [compassion lacking] Catholics get on my case about it before. I never understood why; I’m not married so it’s not like my temporary sterilization even matters.”

    Catholics CAN of course take methotrexate , if it is necessary for their health. Your knowledge of Catholicism is quite wanting.

    Eloping is NOT a sin if you are married by a priest in a Church.. May piss off Mum and Dad a bit, but if you are of legal age, not a problem if you are married in the Church.(I am a practicing Catholic btw)

    This reminds me of another (misinformed) comment you made at Dalrock’s where you said that as far as CATHOLICISM is concerned it is a sin to have sex for pleasure in marriage and Catholic’s are only supposed to do it for procreation.

    Wrong wrong wrong wrong!

    Read the Catholic Catechism.

    It irks me that you spread such nonsense around about the Catholic faith.

    Here is that excerpt from the Catechism once again.

    2362 “The acts in marriage by which the intimate and chaste union of the spouses takes place are noble and honorable; the truly human performance of these acts fosters the self-giving they signify and enriches the spouses in joy and gratitude.”145 Sexuality is a source of joy and pleasure.

  83. Jennifer September 6, 2011 at 10:55 pm #

    No Kathy, Svar went way over the top. His last several comments were aggressively obnoxious and the ones in German were particularly nasty; plus, there’s no good nature at all between him and BF.

  84. Gwen September 6, 2011 at 10:57 pm #

    I can’t see why anyone would WANT a long engagement..

  85. Butterfly Flower September 7, 2011 at 12:01 am #

    Catholics CAN of course take methotrexate , if it is necessary for their health. Your knowledge of Catholicism is quite wanting.

    Anyone sexually active while taking Methotrexate is required to use 2 forms of Birth Control because there is still a small chance a women might get pregnant while on the drug. MTX is an teratogenic so powerful it’s prescribed as an abortifacient.

    Eloping is NOT a sin if you are married by a priest in a Church.. May piss off Mum and Dad a bit, but if you are of legal age, not a problem if you are married in the Church.(I am a practicing Catholic btw)

    I asked my priest and he said I can’t. I would have to wait a few months to take classes. Especially since my boyfriend isn’t Catholic.

    I can elope at my boyfriend’s church, though.

    This reminds me of another (misinformed) comment you made at Dalrock’s where you said that as far as CATHOLICISM is concerned it is a sin to have sex for pleasure in marriage and Catholic’s are only supposed to do it for procreation.

    I was taught that marital sex is meant for procreation. It serves other lesser purposes, but it’s main reason is for the conception of babies.

    Now to Butterfly Flower. Time to grow up a bit. Svar is just teasing and having a bit of fun. Don’t be so touchy, just give it back. He is a good natured kind of guy. ;)

    I beg to differ. He’s never been nice to me, and he refuses to leave me alone, despite my repeated requests. & remember when I “gave it back” to him on TC? He just got more vile and hateful. If Svar was good natured, he wouldn’t behave like such an inconsiderate jerk. BTW, I tried ignoring Svar at first. However it just made his cyberbulling worse!

  86. Kathy September 7, 2011 at 1:18 am #

    If that is the case Jen, then all the more reason for BF just so give it back. Acting all precious and spouting nonsense such as this ,

    “I just hope Svar isn’t bullying me because I take Methotrexate.”

    doesn’t exact any sympathy from me.

    BF: “He cyberbullies me on Dalrock as well.”

    Svar: “Aren’t we being a little dramatic now? I posted to one Solomon II link.”

    Indeed! A drama queen.

    I have recently been reading and commenting over at Dalrock’s, and up until yesterday I saw no evidence Of Svar bullying BF. Of course I have not been back there today(and don’t plan to, anytime soon) so maybe he has been getting stuck into her there today.

    No rude comments now, please Svar, I know what you are like. :D

  87. Brendan September 7, 2011 at 10:47 am #

    Lots of misinformation and/or misunderstandings here — I agree with Kathy.

    Whether you can “elope” as a Catholic depends on what you mean by “eloping”. Although the priest is not the minister of the sacrament, nevertheless the norms prescribed by the Catholic Church generally do require that the marriage take place in a Catholic church unless there is a good reason — that is, unless the Church agrees to do it otherwise for good reasons. That doesn’t mean you need a big wedding, a reception, or any hoo-hah around the marriage, however. So it comes down to what you mean by eloping. Going to Vegas to get married isn’t an option in the Catholic Church.

    As for pre/extra-marital sex and sex-related acts, it is hardly confusing, but rather a bright line: no sexual touching, period. The Catholic Church does not object to kissing/making out, but again definitions come into play — for some people “making out” is a term that describes a whole host of sexual type of touching which, if done intentionally, is sinful outside of marriage. Of course any kind of actual sexual touching of genitalia by hands, fingers, lips and so on would also be sinful. Chastity is challenging, but it isn’t confusing.

    You can have a longer engagement and courtship and not have sex — however, at least one party has to be very strongly motivated to maintain chastity in the relationship, and both parties must be tolerant of maintaining chastity and supportive of it, even if one is “weaker” than the other about giving in to temptations. That doesn’t mean it’s suitable for everyone – but it isn’t delusional, either.

    I’m skeptical of the micro-engagements I have seen outside the Catholic/Orthodox fold, to be honest. Of course, the circumstances are always different in each case, but the idea that people should be in a position to determine whether they are to marry someone in 6 months or so is quite alien to me. I think the Catholics are wise to have the pre-cana period in place, as it does provide a time prior to getting married when you are actually focusing on the marriage itself, and issues relating to that, instead of focusing on the wedding exclusively –> it’s a way of getting couples to slow down a bit (I think it’s at least 6 months in most dioceses and longer in others) as well as getting them to focus on what a marriage is in the eyes of the Church, on what kinds of skills they need to survive in marriage today, on what the expectations are for behavior in a marriage from the perspective of the Church and so on. Of course, many people just go through the motions, thereby missing a good opportunity to grow and focus on something before they actually marry. But the process itself is not a bad one. And neither is slowing people down a bit — if you’re going to spend the rest of your lives together in a relationship that, in principle, is not terminable, what’s the rush? You want to have sex? Another six to nine months of waiting isn’t going to kill you or damage you psychologically for the rest of your life.

  88. Jennifer September 7, 2011 at 10:51 am #

    I just know how exhausting it is to receive that kind of thing over and over, Kathy.

  89. grizzledwolf September 7, 2011 at 10:51 am #

    “Anyone sexually active while taking Methotrexate is required to use 2 forms of Birth Control because there is still a small chance a women might get pregnant while on the drug. MTX is an teratogenic so powerful it’s prescribed as an abortifacient.”

    Is that what you are using it for? Are you pregnant? Are you in immediate risk of death if you don’t take the drug? You know, you could use a handbook on the examination of conscience. And a copy of the Catechism along with a good companion guide.

    “I asked my priest and he said I can’t. I would have to wait a few months to take classes. Especially since my boyfriend isn’t Catholic.

    I can elope at my boyfriend’s church, though.”

    Of course you can elope. What did you expect the priest to say, especially if your parents know him? As long as the proper forms are met, your marriage will be valid. The premarital preparation courses are a matter of prudence. I think you should take ’em though. The prudential reasons for discouraging (not banning) eloping are fairly significant.

    “Like an ancient Phonetician fertility cult, the Magisterium dictates every drop of semen is sacred. Because of this, any [pre-marital] erection triggered by lust is a sin; semen is too sacred to be frivolously wasted”

    Oh Lord almighty, whoever taught you is stuck in the damn 60’s. Monks get involuntary erections too, for crying out loud. Premarital sex is a sin not because every drop of semen is sacred. It is a sin because the whole act itself is sacred, and is the center of man’s and woman’s participation in the power of God’s creation. Did your teachers even teach you the conditions necessary for an act to be a sin? (knowledge, intent, etc.) Whoever teacher begins a statement with “the Magisterium dictates” is already knowledge-deficient. (Oh, and its Phoenician, and anybody who compares Magisterial teachings with that of those fools who worshiped Moloch is either willfully ignorant, or already an outright dissident.)

  90. Butterfly Flower September 7, 2011 at 3:25 pm #

    Is that what you are using it for? Are you pregnant? Are you in immediate risk of death if you don’t take the drug? You know, you could use a handbook on the examination of conscience. And a copy of the Catechism along with a good companion guide.

    No, I’m a virgin; my Rheumatologist prescribed it to treat JIA. But your awful reaction is why I don’t even bother explaining said drug to fellow Catholics. The fact that my medicine is so toxic it would cause instantaneous miscarriage somehow means I want to experience miscarriages *facepalm* No, no I don’t. That is why I plan to use 2 forms of birth control when I become sexually active.

    & I’m not in immediate risk of death if I don’t take MTX; however I’d probably develop pleurisy which would be terribly painful and could lead to death if left untreated.

    Oh, and its Phoenician, and anybody who compares Magisterial teachings with that of those fools who worshiped Moloch is either willfully ignorant, or already an outright dissident

    I wasn’t alluding to Moloch [who isn’t even a fertility God].

    I was alluding to the cultic rites of the fertility God Ea, which includes believing semen is sacred.

    […] Of course, many people just go through the motions, thereby missing a good opportunity to grow and focus on something before they actually marry. But the process itself is not a bad one. And neither is slowing people down a bit — if you’re going to spend the rest of your lives together in a relationship that, in principle, is not terminable, what’s the rush?

    Everyone goes through the motions while having pre-marital sex . That’s what I don’t understand the whole “abstinence” thing. They tell us not to have sex, but what they really mean is “stay abstinent until you have a significant other, relationship sex is okay.”

    I feel like church’s without 6-10 month marital waiting periods value chastity more.

    My boyfriend and I don’t intend to rush into marriage; however we certainly wouldn’t feel comfortable with a year long engagement. If the Church expect engaged couples to wait so long, than pre-marital cohabitation shouldn’t be considered a sin.

    You want to have sex? Another six to nine months of waiting isn’t going to kill you or damage you psychologically for the rest of your life.

    It’s not the “waiting for sex” that is psychologically damaging. It’s how abstinence education labels natural sexuality as a sin.

    Like, apparently I shouldn’t do anything with my boyfriend that might trigger an erection. Erections caused by lust are a sin. My boyfriend and I are young; our hormones rush. Expecting us to not lust after one another is physical impossible! We’d need those anti-sexual desire pills from the George Lucas film THX 1138.

  91. grizzledwolf September 7, 2011 at 8:17 pm #

    “I wasn’t alluding to Moloch [who isn’t even a fertility God].

    I was alluding to the cultic rites of the fertility God Ea, which includes believing semen is sacred.”

    And both in the same pantheon. To equate the Church’s teachings with the teachings of a people that worships these fool cults is ridiculous.

    “But your awful reaction is why I don’t even bother explaining said drug to fellow Catholics.”

    Awful reaction? I’m providing you with a set of questions that will help you judge the morality of what you’re doing. If that’s an “awful reaction”, then I can see why you’re quick to cry wolf.

    “The fact that my medicine is so toxic it would cause instantaneous miscarriage somehow means I want to experience miscarriages.”

    I do not see anything among my words that would imply such a conclusion. All I am saying is that it is highly immoral to use the drug to end pregnancies, so if that is not your intent, and there is no other alternative, then it is not a sin, and you can stop hacking at your Catholic straw man.

    “If the Church expect engaged couples to wait so long, than pre-marital cohabitation shouldn’t be considered a sin.”

    The Church does not require a year-long engagement. My cousin went from engagement to marriage in three months, and that includes about a week’s worth of premarital formation. Where in the world are you getting your information? All the Church requires is that you are damn sure you want to marry, because She is not going to countenance a divorce. The prudential requirements stem from that reality.

  92. Brendan September 8, 2011 at 3:59 pm #

    It’s how abstinence education labels natural sexuality as a sin.

    Like, apparently I shouldn’t do anything with my boyfriend that might trigger an erection. Erections caused by lust are a sin. My boyfriend and I are young; our hormones rush. Expecting us to not lust after one another is physical impossible!

    Which is why we are to resist it.

    The Christian worldview is that humans are fallen. What seems “natural” to us, is in fact, not according to plan, because we are fallen. So, yes, we are tempted. Temptation IS natural. And it feels natural, and right, and fitting, and so on. Yet, it is sin precisely because it is not the plan. Often what feels natural to us is sinful, because we are fallen. Is that a bitch? Yes, it is. That is the nature of being fallen, however.

    Having said that, there is intentional and unintentional. In the EO tradition, we ask for forgiveness for both, yet unintentional is clearly in a different category — objectively sin, yet still less personal responsibility. So, if the touching is not intentional, that is a fare less grave issue than if it is. In other words, erections do happen, and are not in themselves sinful, yet egging them on in an unchaste (i.e., unmarried) environment is quite sinful.

  93. Butterfly Flower September 8, 2011 at 6:39 pm #

    @Brendan:

    So what you’re really saying is, my boyfriend lusts after me because of the Devil ?

    While that’s an, uh…interesting theory, in Anatomy class I learned lust is actually triggered by the pituitary gland. Endocrinologists have yet to find a link between the pituitary gland and the Devil.

    Anyway, if I make my boyfriend wear a chastity belt would our indiscretions no longer be sinful? He’s a healthy “fallen” human being with a fully functioning pituitary gland, it’s not like I could prevent him from getting aroused.

    …no wonder so many teens completely disregard abstinence lessons! It gets way too weird.

    & it’s not like chastity even matters anymore. If I end up having pre-marital sex I’ll just go to confession. That’s what all Catholics seem to do nowadays. It’s like a loophole; the Church indirectly permits premarital sex.

  94. Jennifer September 8, 2011 at 6:50 pm #

    BF, please stop persistently misrepresenting Catholic beliefs. You’ve been corrected over and over again, and it’s getting old.

  95. Butterfly Flower September 8, 2011 at 7:47 pm #

    BF, please stop persistently misrepresenting Catholic beliefs. You’ve been corrected over and over again, and it’s getting old.

    I’m not misinterpreting. I want to know why my Catholic education taught me sexual emotions [i.e. lust] are something to suppress and be ashamed of.

    Maybe young Christians today struggle with romantic relationships because they’ve been taught psychologically damaging abstinence programs. Instead of being told pre-marital sex is wrong, we’ve been told not to think about sex. Don’t touch your boyfriend, play board games.

    …and why shouldn’t I be upset about the hypocrisy? Why does the Catholic Church teach chastity, yet it easily forgives pre-marital sex? It makes my own virginity feel worthless.

  96. Kathy September 9, 2011 at 4:33 am #

    “I”’m not misinterpreting. I want to know why my Catholic education taught me sexual emotions [i.e. lust] are something to suppress and be ashamed of.”

    So says the precious little petal.. ;)

    Lol. You are just a troll BF.(Svar was on the right track)

    Catholic Education taught you? Bulldust! I provide excerpts from the Catholic Catechism which you conveniently ignore. Perhaps you have a comprehension problem, or choose to ignore the truth… Nope more likely just an ignorant troublemaker.

    Look, you bitched and moaned about how horrid and mean Beta’s were towards you, and how you despaired and washed your hands of them all!!

    Waxed lyrical about how you were a pure and virginal Catholic girl too (sickening) *ROLLS EYES *

    Next you pop up with a S.N.A.G. of an Anglican guy and poor scorn on anything Catholic.. Pfft!

    Brendan and grizzledwolf showed you up for the puerile troll that you are.

  97. Kathy September 9, 2011 at 4:49 am #

    As for this:

    “It makes my own virginity feel worthless.”

    Well it is worthless according to the petting that you have mentioned that you already engage in.

    “& it’s not like chastity even matters anymore. If I end up having pre-marital sex I’ll just go to confession. That’s what all Catholics seem to do nowadays. It’s like a loophole; the Church indirectly permits premarital sex.”

    Proof there that you are indeed a troll. The Catholics that do engage in pre-marital sex do not give a toss about their faith.. They .. do.. not.. go.. to.. confession.. Why? Because they are Catholics in name only (like you)

    Catholics who adhere to the tenents of the Catholic faith take confession seriously.They try to do better and try to refrain from commiting the same sins.

    Run along little girl…. You know nothing of Catholics or the Catholic faith…

    As Jennifer said: “Stop misrepresenting Catholic beliefs.”

  98. Butterfly Flower September 9, 2011 at 6:01 am #

    @Kathy:

    It’s okay, I don’t even wanna be a Christian anymore. Nearly all Christians I encounter are hateful, self-righteous, and have the nerve to give me advice they themselves never even adhered to [Kathy, aren’t you divorced? Doesn’t that make you a Catholic in-name-only?]

    I think I’m just gonna stick to shoe shopping. I’m a bad Christian anyway; I have a pituitary gland that makes me experience sexual lust for my boyfriend. I’ll never be good enough for God and I rather not waste my time worrying about pleasing him because lately I don’t even have the strength to believe in his existence.

  99. Kathy September 9, 2011 at 6:26 am #

    Lol, my first marriage was annulled by the Catholic Church.

    “I’ll never be good enough for God and I rather not waste my time worrying about pleasing him because lately I don’t even have the strength to believe in his existence.”

    HA HA HA HA .. Dummy spit big time.

    http://www.urbandictionary.com/define.php?term=Spit+the+Dummy

  100. Butterfly Flower September 9, 2011 at 7:04 am #

    HA HA HA HA .. Dummy spit big time.

    Actually, I had mentioned I don’t really have the strength to be a Christian anymore a few days ago, earlier in this thread. For the same reasons OTC left Christianity. [I wish I had OTC’s email address, I’d like to talk to her about RA]

    Kathy, can you please stop personally attacking me/being cruel to me? Your behavior just reinforces all of my perceptions about Christians. You’re certainly not behaving in a Christ-like manner.

    Lol, my first marriage was annulled by the Catholic Church.

    & do you honestly expect me to believe you didn’t have sex with your current husband until you were married?

  101. Kathy September 9, 2011 at 7:20 am #

    “Kathy, can you please stop personally attacking me/being cruel to me? Your behavior just reinforces all of my perceptions about Christians. You’re certainly not behaving in a Christ-like manner.”

    Give it a rest. I am (as others have tried to do) pointing out your lack of knowledge and understanding of the Catholic faith , and the fact that you are denigrating and misrepresenting Catholicism.

    Now why don’t you go find your dummy and toddle off to play with the other kids :D

  102. Butterfly Flower September 9, 2011 at 7:39 am #

    Give it a rest. I am (as others have tried to do) pointing out your lack of knowledge and understanding of the Catholic faith , and the fact that you are denigrating and misrepresenting Catholicism.

    I went to a Catholic school. These things were taught to me in a Catholic school .

    My lack of knowledge was being taught an abstinence program that pretty much told me sexual thoughts are a sin. I can’t think sexy thoughts about my boyfriend. I should just play board games with my boyfriend.

    Also, you purposely didn’t answer my question about having pre-marital sex. Like I said before, nearly all Catholics engage in pre-marital sex.

    I think abstinence is more of a Protestant thing. It’s not really practiced or endorsed as much in other denominations.

  103. Aunt Haley September 9, 2011 at 7:41 am #

    BF–
    I’ve had enough of you clogging up the comments with your asinine attention-seeking. You’re joining your buddy Svar in moderation.

  104. OffTheCuff September 9, 2011 at 7:49 am #

    I’m not misinterpreting. I want to know why my Catholic education taught me sexual emotions [i.e. lust] are something to suppress and be ashamed of.
    Maybe young Christians today struggle with romantic relationships because they’ve been taught psychologically damaging abstinence programs. Instead of being told pre-marital sex is wrong, we’ve been told not to think about sex.

    BF, I went through the exact same thing as you as a kid. I really do sympathize. I think you are the victim of of bad education.

    Bad sex ed, but also bad spiritual education. I fully admit my knowledge about the real pillars of Christianity were totally wrong when I was at your age — I had to leave the Church and study it from a distance in order to begin to understand it. You’re Catholic, so you’re going to fall into the traps of legalism even more than a Lutheran like me did. It’s far too easy and as a kid, I did not have the mind the understand it.

    If you want my email, you can ask Susan Walsh or Haley to connect us. But I’m not a “she” so I’ll understand if you don’t wish to talk privately. My avatar (a “bad” nun) is something of a in-joke that sums up my spiritual condition.

    Kathy, she’s a kid, and I’m going to bet she didn’t decide to go to church out of her own volition. Any false ideas in her Christian education lies with the people who sent her there and who taught her. Your attitude to her will drive people away rather than bring them back, speaking as one so-driven out. Of course, since I’m out, I’m happy to see you say such thing. Keep it up!

    Signed, OTC, the friendly, ex-Lutheran (but religion-fascinated) atheist.

  105. Langobard September 9, 2011 at 9:08 am #

    I do not mean to be belligerant here, but I always found it extremely suspect (and rather amusing) that BF claims to have found a “real” “Christian alfa” boyfriend – especially with her ambivalent (and somewhat disrespectful) attitude toward the Faith (or Church) – and, even more strange, her (seemingly self-admitted) neurotic personality traits. (If I misrepresented anything said here forgive me.)

  106. Langobard September 9, 2011 at 10:33 am #

    It’s okay, I don’t even wanna be a Christian anymore. Nearly all Christians I encounter are hateful, self-righteous, and have the nerve to give me advice they themselves never even adhered to [Kathy, aren’t you divorced? Doesn’t that make you a Catholic in-name-only?]

    I think I’m just gonna stick to shoe shopping. I’m a bad Christian anyway; I have a pituitary gland that makes me experience sexual lust for my boyfriend. I’ll never be good enough for God and I rather not waste my time worrying about pleasing him because lately I don’t even have the strength to believe in his existence.

    Wow – missed this “gem” of a comment :{

    BF – if you really think or believe this hateful spite that your spewing, then I *really wonder* if you ever were a Christian in the first place.

    *Whether you are one or not is not a problem with me, but be careful, for if you are not a troll and are merely having doubts (or just feeling a little belligerant due to the sometimes adversarial nature, and misunderstandings, of anonymous internet debating) you’re treading on very dangerous ground here with your soul – as well as being totally gratuitous and needlessly insulting against the Faith, and other commentators here.

  107. Will S. September 9, 2011 at 10:57 am #

    Oh, I’m under moderation now? Interesting.

  108. Jennifer September 9, 2011 at 11:28 am #

    You might not be under moderation, Will; one of my comments did that too and it seems to have been a flub.

  109. Will S. September 9, 2011 at 1:10 pm #

    @ Jennifer: Yeah, must be, ’cause the next one went through, but the other one is still waiting. I’m going to repost it, see if that works – and not have the original one too far back to be noticed.

  110. Will S. September 9, 2011 at 1:12 pm #

    BF behaves this way wherever she goes, whether here or Traditional Christianity or Dalrock’s or Dark Brightness, and elsewhere.

    Now y’all know why Svar was encouraging folks not to feed the troll. Go look at her whining on multiple posts at Dark Brightness, entirely unrelated to Chris’ content, and her putting words in my mouth when I called her on her BS, and judge for yourself.

  111. Will S. September 9, 2011 at 1:15 pm #

    BeeEff behaves this way everywhere she goes, whether here or Traditional Christianity or Dalrock’s or Dark Brightness, and elsewhere.

    Now y’all know why S’var was encouraging folks not to feed the troll. See her whining at Dark Brightness, entirely unrelated to the posts, and putting words in my mouth when I called her on her BeeEss, and judge for yourself.

  112. Will S. September 9, 2011 at 1:16 pm #

    (Please delete the multiple posts stuck in moderation, Haley.)

  113. Langobard September 9, 2011 at 8:01 pm #

    BeeEff behaves this way everywhere she goes, whether here or Traditional Christianity or Dalrock’s or Dark Brightness, and elsewhere.

    Now y’all know why S’var was encouraging folks not to feed the troll. See her whining at Dark Brightness, entirely unrelated to the posts, and putting words in my mouth when I called her on her BeeEss, and judge for yourself.

    Yes, after checking out the sites you mention Will, I have come to the unfortunate conclusion that she is, likely, here to sow dissension, either as a deliberate anti-Christian agent provocateur, or merely as a disturbed soul who is using this blog for her own narcissistic ends and/or ‘therapy’, as Haley said it: ‘attention-seeking’; and trying to pass off the pain of her own psychological ambivalence regarding our Faith onto everyone else (i.e. ‘misery loves company’).

    *I must say, I am very proud how so many sincere commentaters here closed ranks and called her duplicitous behahior ‘on the carpet’… (**mega-props** to Kathy for her quick, bluetick observations on BF, especially, and immediately, noticing the “Split the Dummy” schtick BF pulled when she was adroitly reproved by Kathy – beautiful).

    Dear friends, do not believe every spirit, but test the spirits to see whether they are from God, because many false prophets have gone out into the world. – 1 John 4:1

    But there were also false prophets among the people, just as there will be false teachers among you. They will secretly introduce destructive heresies, even denying the sovereign Lord who bought them–bringing swift destruction on themselves. – Peter 2:1

    *Repent Butterfly Flower, repent – if you really did sincerely, and in good faith, come to this blog and mean what you said regarding your understandable struggles with life, and with aspects of Our Faith, for virtually all of Us can relate and appreciate with what you’re going through. And even if you didn’t come here with the noblest of intentions – repent all the more so – since God loves you and truly does want the spiritual best for your existence.

  114. Will S. September 9, 2011 at 9:55 pm #

    Hear, hear, Langobard! Spot on.

  115. Langobard September 9, 2011 at 10:27 pm #

    Hear, hear, Langobard! Spot on.

    Well, what can I say, but *hear hear* to you, dearest Brother-in-Christ…!

  116. Tom Sexton September 10, 2011 at 3:16 pm #

    This article really helped me a lot when I was trying figure out if my girlfriend was the woman I wanted to marry (the answer ended up being yes, and we are happily married).

    http://www.boundless.org/2005/articles/a0001306.cfm

    The writer is also strongly in favor of short courtships.

  117. Will S. September 10, 2011 at 7:10 pm #

    @ Tom Sexton: I’m glad you made the right decision, that it all worked out for you. But I take issue with that article’s assertion that we all marry Gomer like Hosea; no, because though both Gomer and Hosea, like all humans, were sinners, most of us aren’t called by God to marry an unfaithful spouse, in the absolute sense like Gomer. No; rather, we are unfaithful insofar as our sinfulness and lack of perfect faith goes, but not in every case in a literal sense, and I believe we should be wary about taking an example of something that God specifically commanded one prophet to do, and taking it as something meant to be universably applicable. That’s as foolish as WWJD; what Jesus would do, was what He did do; die on the cross for our sins. We can’t do that, and thanks be to Jesus, we don’t have to because He already did it for us. As for what else Jesus would do, what He did do was not work much in his occupation, instead travelling the countryside preaching, and performing miracles, and being housed and fed by others. Can we all do that? Of course not! We should avoid making direct examples from Scripture, taking them as absolute models for us all to follow, which unfortunately is an error this Boundless author makes, in the essay you linked.

    Oh, and this: “No matter how long you’ve dated, everyone marries a stranger.” What? I should hope not! I’m not arguing for delaying decisions any longer than need be, but surely, ideally, you shouldn’t be strangers by the time you marry. I realize a couple will continue to learn new things about each other as they go through life, but that doesn’t mean they should know each other so little when they marry that they might well regard each other as strangers!

    This just seems like more typical Boundless “Men, shut up, stop thinking, and marry her if she wants to marry you, right away!” advice.

    BTW, I don’t know how you stumbled upon this blog, I don’t recognize you as a regular, but you should know, Haley, and most of us here, are rather wary about the sort of advice given out at Boundless; there is some good stuff, certainly, but much chaff / tares amongst the wheat.

  118. Tom Sexton September 10, 2011 at 8:18 pm #

    I suppose the overall idea that struck me was to concentrate on making yourself the right man for her (or woman for him, as the case may be). I can’t speak to the rest of the somewhat shaky theology, but I know that at the time and all throughout my (admittedly limited) marital experience, that has been one concept that has continued to ring true. That of selfless giving.

    I had just never thought to apply that concept to matrimonial discernment. It seems pretty straight forward looking back on it, but I somehow never thought of it. That’s how I feel God usually works–every time I learn something new, it seems to follow naturally form something else…at least for me anyway.

    I can also tell you that I’ve never actually read another Boundless article, so I can’t comment on their overall message.

  119. Will S. September 10, 2011 at 8:32 pm #

    @ TS: That certainly makes great sense, focusing on making oneself a better person, primarily. What I worry about, though, is an apparent bias in the evangelical world, esp. at Boundless, that it’s mostly men who need to do this, and not so much women, when, of course, we’re all broken, sinful, in need of a saviour, and so there’s no reason to suppose one sex to be superior to the other in terms of righteousness, yet Boundless seems to focus more on the sins of the one sex – us males – than the other…

    Beside Haley, right here, another good blogger who has shown much problems with Boundless and their ‘advice’, is Anakin Niceguy; his defunct blog is here:

    http://biblicalmanhood.blogspot.com/

    Worth checking out, for all young Christian men – and sympathetic young Christian women, too.

  120. Jennifer September 11, 2011 at 12:07 am #

    That man and his blog are awesome, Will. Far superior to one guy he linked; the young Emaious should learn from him.

  121. Jennifer September 11, 2011 at 12:34 am #

    Tom, great post! I agree with Will to beware of biases though. I emerge from one set of poison theology that harangues women into making their lives about following men like God, then run headlong into feminist trash gently impaling men with the flipside of the same kind of poison.

  122. Will S. September 11, 2011 at 3:57 am #

    @ Jennifer: Oh yeah, Anakin’s blog is great. It’s a shame he stopped blogging, but I can understand blog burnout, and at least he didn’t nuke it, so we can still read it.

  123. Blissex September 11, 2011 at 10:10 am #

    «Christians always tell me such insensitive things about my illness; like I wouldn’t be suffering if I believed in God more; or if I had been a better Christian, God would have healed me by now.»

    That’s prosperity theology… And in a particularly obnoxious form.

    BTW as to Butterfly Flower’s reports as to her catholic education etc., they are perfectly credible. Essentially all Catholics are taught wrong doctrines, and the same goes for almost all Christians.

    Various Christian theologies tend to be pretty exacting in their details, and it can be very, very difficult to avoid being seriously heretic in your denomination, whichever it is, without years of training and very careful language (and many priests and pastors are often inadvertently heretic too). BTW Christology seems a particularly fertile source of heresy, and many people killed each other in the past couple of millennia because of christological disagreements.

    In practice in most denominations, Catholic, Protestant or otherwise, most people’s religious beliefs are a random mess of poorly misunderstood theological hearsay and traditional prejudices and rules. And then there is the argument that too much of early Christianity borrowed the forms and even a little bit of the theology of Mithraism and other pagan religions to ease the transition from mass pagan worship to mass Christian worship.

    A big mess, and a somewhat tolerant spirit sometimes helps.

  124. Jennifer September 11, 2011 at 10:18 pm #

    Yes, blog burnout can be bad; due to my OCD, no matter how passionate I am, I couldn’t have a blog. He’s a good man.

  125. van Rooinek September 14, 2011 at 9:32 am #

    “… I think a lot of Christians would deny that prolonged abstinence can inflict any psychological damage, because it is a spiritual issue, not a physical or psychological one. Trying to pin psychological damage on abstinence is just Satan’s Hamster at work, trying to make you believe that sin is not sin…”

    Well… I never went all the way till my wedding night… at age 38… and I am here to tell you that, YES, prolonged abstinence IS deeply psychologically damaging to men. This is NOT “Satan’s hamster” * talking — I am NOT making an excuse to fornicate as I believe that would have been even more damaging. But being involuntarily celibate that long, really hurts. I want my 3 sons dating at 16 and married before 20. I pray God spares them the misery I suffered.

    (Besides, males don’t have rationalization hamsters anyway. Mesocricetus rationionalis cannot survive in the presence of high levels of testosterone.)

    My wife and I dated 6 months, were engaged 6 months. No wasted time. As soon as you find the right person, GET MARRIED. Perhaps an exception can be made for 2 young lovers separated by overseas deployments or going to college in different cities, but if you are physically proximate, and you know that s/he is the one, DO NOT WAIT.

  126. Jennifer September 14, 2011 at 10:39 am #

    Sorry, men do have hamsters. Or avoidance weasels, as they’re called.

  127. terri-or-smith-or-crazybitch September 14, 2011 at 4:16 pm #

    -deleted-

    [Haley: Deleted on account of tough Christian love.]

  128. Samson September 14, 2011 at 5:36 pm #

    [Don’t quote the trolls.]

  129. laceagate September 14, 2011 at 7:49 pm #

    Haley, what do you say to the comment “Well, you just need to have more self-control”? I’ve heard that one a lot. Never mind the fact that we are instructed to not burn with passion…

  130. Samson September 14, 2011 at 8:01 pm #

    That was a pretty good troll, though.

  131. Anon February 24, 2012 at 11:27 am #

    Christards are fucked up in the head.

  132. Jennifer February 24, 2012 at 12:41 pm #

    As opposed to who, Anon? Single moms, AIDS-ridden men, sexual carousel burned-out adults?

Trackbacks/Pingbacks

  1. Kirk and discipline. | Dark Brightness - September 3, 2011

    […] be encouraging us to be righteous, not fall into temptation. And at times it does exactly that. Haley is absolutely correct in her comments here: I think the church has done a real disservice to its young men and women by going along with the […]

  2. Aunt Haley on why single evangelicals fail to maintain chastity « Patriactionary - December 16, 2011

    […] Aunt Haley at Haley’s Halo weighed in with a great short observation, here, really a re-iteration of points she’d already made, actually, in expanded form, in an excellent previous post here. […]

  3. EG: The Dangers of a Long Engagement | Morning Sprinkles and Evening Gunfire - August 4, 2013

    […] most do is unwise and leads to sexual immorality, I haven’t seen anyone except Haley touch on long engagements. Since I’m a bit closer to the subject I wanted to go ahead and explore the possible risks […]

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