Well, true to form, Albert Mohler is celebrating Mark Regnerus' article in CT and has decided to beat the drum about the matter. My thoughts about Al's broadcast (see the minute markers below) ...
13:30 ff. (But especially at 14:50 ff.) ... Let's see. "It's unreasonable to expect" young people who delay marriage to not sleep around ...but wait! Sexual sin is problem! It's theological schizophrenia at its worst. Listen up folks: I'm all for early marriage, but it's becoming apparent to me that Albert Mohler and Mark Regnerus are much more fatalistic than I am about people being able to obey God's commands. Apparently, only married people can be pleasing to God. Everyone else is doomed to sexual sin, unless of course, you are one of the mystical 144,000 with the gift of celibacy.
16:10 ff. Marriage makes adults of us? Those of us who have witnessed the legacy of parents this side of the Baby Boom can have a laugh at that one.
16:20 ff. Gross eisegesis of 1 Cor. 7:7. I see no mention of the "gift of celibacy" here. No mention of Paul having a low sex drive or some divine gift of not caring about women. It doesn't stop the Marriage Mandate movement from imagining that it's there in the text, though. Just like Genesis 1:28 and Genesis 2:18, they've quoted the passage so long, they stopped actually reading it.
17:55 ff. Our poor teens don't have the gift of celibacy because they are having sex! Umm, they probably don't have a clue, either. Could it be the real reason evangelical youngsters are not so far apart from the world in having premarital sex is because they are surrounded by a pornographic culture? Or how about these reasons ...
(1) The religious community of which they are a part is more culturally conservative than spiritual. I mean Christianity is more than just refraining from sex. But with so many religious conservatives, their faith seems to be about mere do's and dont's. So, their kids see through the charade and conclude that even the do's and don'ts are a waste of time. Why should the kids be serious about tackling sexual sin when the grown-ups at church aren't serious about tackling materialism, selfish ambition, gossip, bitterness, wrath, backbiting and all the other works of the flesh that you don't hear the cultural warriors talk about? Christianity has been dead in North America for a long time (being reduced to a civic club for Republicans) and the putative 80% of church kids sleeping around only puts the icing on the cake, IMHO.
(2) Albert Mohler and others have already told young people in so many words they are going to fail. So the mantra goes like this: "God designed us for sex!" No, folks, God designed us to fear him and keep his commandments, whether we get "get lucky" or not (Eccles. 12:13).
21:00 ff. Some talk about "the World" and "the Biblical vision" (read "us" vs. "them"). Is the Marriage Mandate Movement really all that separate from how the world views relationships between men and women? You mean male-bashing and an overemphasis on romantic relationships being the solution to life's problems are Christian concepts and not something I can see on the Lifetime Channel?
23:50 ff. Proposal that we grill young men about their marital status. "How are you handling this?" Hey, Albert, how are the married men handling it? Or is Proverbs 21:9 just written in jest and not really meant as cautionary advice? All the questions you fire at the young man struggling with his chastity could be fired right back at the older man struggling in his marriage. Everything has its price (1 Cor. 7:28).
29:00 ff. Guess who is on the show tonight, folks! Candice Watters is in da house! Al hearts ya, SISTAH! Cue from stage left and sit in the easy chair next to the big man. Smile to the camera and tell us about your latest movie.
32:30 ff. Male bashing. What would Albert and Candice's shtick be without that? Men delay marriage "because they can?" Yeah, and more power to them, I say. Men delay marriage because the owners of the club have set the entry fee too high. Or men delay marriage because it's not available to them. Maybe Marriage 2.0 is the only product on the shelves in a given situation.
33:10 ff. The fundamental responsibility is mostly on men to "grow up and get married"? And that part about how oh-so-many Christian women are "ready for marriage?" Are these women ready for marriage, or they just ready for the wedding? Big difference, there, Al. Because in marriage, it takes two to tango. It takes mutual sacrifice. I have a difficult time believing that a generation of women raised on a diet of cultural misandry, helicopter parenting, materialism, and the therapeutic zeitgeist of putting female felt needs before all else is really ready for marriage. Are they really ready to selflessly love a man and be his helpmeet? Are they even ready to keep the toast from burning?
Finally, Al, you ask, "Where are the men?" They're all around you, pal (Although, they are probably not dancing to your tune.). They're all around those poor little evangelical bachelorettes, too. But the women don't see those men. When ladies ask, "Where are the men?" they probably mean only those that could perchance fall within what Roger Devlin calls their "erotic field of view." The young Christian maiden is probably wondering why Matt the pretty boy "won't get serious" and be "spiritual" like her and "realize his call" to embrace "Biblical manhood" by embracing marriage. Unheeded goes Raymond, who is shy and socially awkward, but loves the Lord much more than Matt ever will. Put another way? I fear too many women are confusing strong feelings with the quality of being spiritual.
Anyway, with respect to Al, it's essentially just more of the same. I'll leave it at that.
HT: Puritan Calvinist.
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