Monthly Archives: November 2006

Jesus is My Boyfriend!

Read the following story and then decide whether you think it is straight news, or satire.

ANAHEIM — The latest Vineyard Music worship CD, “Intimacy, vol. 2,” has raced to the top of the Christian sales charts, but Wal-Mart is refusing to stock the album without slapping on a parental warning sticker. The ground-breaking — some say risqué — album includes edgy worship songs such as “My Lover, My God,” “Touch Me All Over,” “Naked Before You,” “I’ll Do Anything You Want,” “Deeper” and “You Make Me Hot with Desire.”  

“We’ve had concerns about previous Vineyard CD’s, but this time they went overboard in their suggestive imagery depicting the church’s love affair with Christ,” said a Wal-Mart spokesman. “It would be irresponsible to sell this to 13-year-old kids.”

A Vineyard Music Group (VMG) spokesman defended the album. 

“We felt this was the next logical step in furthering people’s intimacy with the Lord, as the title implies,” said Sam Haverley, director of VMG public relations. “People aren’t content with yesterday’s level of closeness. They want something more. We feel this album gives them that.” 

Wal-Mart represents a third of all CD sales, which has forced VMG to try to negotiate a deal. VMG proposed adding a heart-shaped warning sticker rather than the black-and-white label more often seen on raunchy rap albums, but Wal-Mart refused. VMG is considering issuing a censored version of the album.  ”

If Christians want to make R- or X-rated music, that’s up to them,” said a Wal-Mart spokesman, “but we don’t have to carry it.” 

 When I first read this, quoted in a blog as a news item the blogger was blogging about, I went looking for the news agency which had generated the copy.  Mother Google helped, of course, and there it was:  Lark News
 
Did I feel bamboozled?  Foolish?  Gullible? 
 
No way.  I didn’t read this as satire, because you can’t satirize Jesus-is-my-boyfriend songs any more.  They’re simply too mainstream to be satirized.  It would be like satirizing the wetness of water, or the brightness of sunlight.  You can’t exaggerate what’s already so far out there that nothing can exceed it.
 
Well, I guess it could be exceeded, but only by borrowing from the Baal worshippers and getting hot, steamy sex in the sanctuary on Sunday morning.  And why create a janitorial crisis when you can simply sing about it, in hypnotic repetitions, with backup band and crooning voice-overs that help you slip into a religio-erotic swoon of your own creation. 
 
Try googling the phrase “Jesus is my boyfriend” but before you do, make a guess on how many hits that will generate.  It won’t be a gazillion (the post-millennial kingdom hasn’t arrived yet, dontcha know).  But, I’ll betcha its more than you thought it would be. Yes, a lot of them are negative toward Jesus-as-my-boyfriend; but, they testify to the pervasiveness of the notion in Christian worship and culture.  Jesus-is-my-boyfriend-songs have become a genre of the Contemporary Christian Music (CCM) scene, and a feature of many thousands of contemporary worship services each week across the land. 

Guy: King of Kings and Lord of Lords?

Boyfriended: Nawwww.  That’s so retro.  Jesus is our boyfriend now, and if you’re a guy, no biggie.  Just put Jesus in touch with your feminine side and things will be just fine. 
 
Guy: “But, I’m a TOTAL guy.  I don’t have a feminine side!”
 
Boyfriended: Well, you’re in the bride of Christ, so you’re feminine at some level.  Quit fighting it and learn to groove.  Ask your sisters in Christ about it.  They’ll help you learn to melt in Jesus’ intimate love.  Try it, and you’ll like it.
 
Guy: But, I won’t feel like a guy any more.  Instead, I’ll feel really gay.”
 
Boyfriended: Sheesh.  What a chauvinist!  Get over yourself already!  Just sing those love ballads to Jesus and you’ll get in the groove after a couple of dozen verses.  It’s not hard.  Just let go and let Jesus be your boyfriend.
 

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Filed under Egalitarianism, liturgy, Man, the glory of God

Can Anything Good Come Out of Oz?

Which of the following comes to mind when you think of Oz (aka Australia)?

  • Something to confuse with Austria
  • The home country of Crocadile Dundee
  • The inspiration for a steakhouse franchise
  • Source of kangaroo and boomerang paraphranalia
  • Home of a cadre of female Southern Hemisphere complementarians

That last entry is probably not what you thought of, but now you can and should.  The country which inflicted Kevin Giles on Northern Hemisphere evangelicals has now been redeemed by Christian sisters who expose his siren songs that corrupt and confuse evangelicals’ historic trust in the Bible. 

Equal but Different LogoEqual But Different  had its genesis in the 1992 debates about the ordination of women to the priesthood in the Anglican Church of Australia. But much has happened since then.” 

Seems they’re not given to exaggeration! 

“We realise this is counter-cultural in our feminist society but believe the teaching of the Bible is clear and relevant to our day, despite the passage of time and cultural change.” 

Amen.

“Equal but Different currently has members all around Australia and overseas, including men and women from many different Christian denominations.”

Excellent, since the egalitarian poison poisons all Christian denominations. 

“All our contributors are women with regular contributors including Lesley Ramsay, Marion Gabbott and Claire Smith.”

This is interesting.  Fighting feminist fire with feminine fire, are we?  Good on ya!

Check it out.

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Filed under Complementarianism

Hope for the Future

Last night, my wife Barbara spent the evening with five female students of Five Aspects of Woman, led by the wife of a couple who minister with an international evangelism/discipleship organization on the campus of my (and my wife’s) alma mater.  Four of them were single seniors on campus, one was a 30-something married next door neighbor.  We were in town to visit my daughter and son-in-law, and my wife took the opportunity to check in with this study, partly to encourage the facilitator, partly to refresh our “from the field” information. 

hope

When she left the meeting, she reported being encouraged more than she had for a long time.  As we discussed the reasons why, we came up with the following factors, some of them surfacing in her time with these young women, others emerging from similar conversations my wife has had with young women who appropriate the Biblical model of femininity into their lives:

Survivors of feminism: in North America, the public school systems both public and private have pursued a social engineering agenda unprecedented in western civilization: to inculcate, indoctrinate, and enforce upon the students’ worldview the notion that there is no inherent difference between males and females.  We are seeing the third full generation of children reared under this doctrinaire framework, and we are also seeing the first of the bitter fruits beginning to ripen in the culture. 

And yet …

Here are these young women, a minority of young women to be sure, but still … their femininity is still intact, intact in the sense that they do not identify themselves as inherently identical to males in social, psychological, and spiritual perspectives.  Moreover, they acknowledge a fair understanding of the feminist ethos imposed on them since birth; yet, they have also succeeded wanting something for themselves that comports with who they knew themselves to be: females, who are different from males, whose happiness and productivity is to be found in their created natures rather than the socially engineered identities of secular or religious feminism.

Clear-sighted about the past:  It’s been a long known notion that worldliness in the Church follows the culture by about 25 to 30 years.  Students of secular feminism can see this “lag” in evangelical feminism, still mired in the power politics and “justice issues” of the past couple of generations.  We have found that when young Christian women actually escape the indoctrination of the culture, they do so because of compelling evidence from their feminist grandmothers, mothers, and aunts, whose lives turned out to be painfully messy in ways that the youngsters connect with the feminist dogma their natural female mentors have pursued all their lives.  Childlessness, divorce, often serial divorce, lonely singleness, and the defeminizing effects of careerism — these young women have seen it in their female elders, and they want something better. 

Hopeful for the future:  Attending to the pain of the previous generations of women who followed the feminist dreams, these young women are ready to take up again the classical feminine identity, the “feminine mystique” scorned by Friedan, demonized by Millet, and lampooned by Greer back in the middle of the previous century, all the more so when they perceive the Biblical roots of classical femininity.  Their re-embrace of classical femininity will not change things in the culture in the immediate future, but these women literally bear the future in their wombs.  As wives and mothers, they hold the key to reshaping and reclaiming a culture of sexual sanity 50 to 100 years into the future.

Why? 

First of all, because feminism – including its religious versions – promotes death.  Whether one aborts one’s children, or simply refuses to conceive them, secular and religious feminists are keen to avoid multiplying and filling the earth with their kind.  Over time, feminism dies, because feminists both male and female do not reporduce.  On the other hand, fecundity is one of the most fundamental marks of femininity.

Second, the re-emergence of classical femininity provides an increasingly stark contrast between the life-time outcomes of those emeshed in the sexual chaos of feminism and the happy sanity of classical femininity.  Today’s refugees from egalitarianism give serious consideration to Biblical femininity mostly because they are seeking a viable alternative to what they observe does not work.  Tomorrow’s refugees will have an easier time, for the alternative will be “out there” for immediate observation, and unlike the spiritual sterility of feminism.

None of the young women in the class were pregnant in a biological sense (though the facilitator is).  All of them, however, were pregnant in a spiritual sense, holding within themselves the prospect of replanting Biblical Christianity back into their culture.  It’s a work that bears its best fruit two and three generations in the future. 

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Filed under Complementarianism, Woman, the Lifegiver