New commenter Tim asks:
I’ve come to really enjoy your writing since I first found it about six months ago. I appreciate how you’ve expanded my thinking on many issues.
However, although I’ve read many of your archived articles, I struggle to understand your actual positions on issues.
Because you’re so skilled with pointing out the various errors you see in modern Christian perspectives (such as the errors with complementarianism, courtly love, etc.) I think I understand your alternatives, but I’m never quite sure.
In short, you frequently oppose a position but I can rarely figure out what your actual position is. I’m interested in the positive principles and positions that you teach your children.
Will you please consider writing a series of positive articles, stating as clearly as you’re able what you actually believe and why? This would be very helpful for me as I consider your work.
I very much appreciate Tim’s kind words, and if he has a specific topic he wants me to provide more detail on I’ll do my best either via a comment, a reference to an existing post, or by writing a new post.
However, I think the question itself is telling. If I’m reading Tim correctly, he agrees that modern Christians have unwittingly adopted courtly love in place of Christianity, and he agrees that courtly love is a perverse mockery of Christianity. But (again, if I understand correctly) he struggles to imagine what Christianity would look like if we removed the adulterant.
While I think I get where he is coming from, the very fact that it is hard to imagine Christianity without courtly love (not to mention feminism) is the fundamental problem. Imagine a time in the not too distant future where Christians have adopted homosexuality as if it were Christianity. A blogger who regularly pointed this out might receive a similar question:
I’ve been reading your blog for some time, and have begun to see what you are getting at. After reading here I can now see what a bad idea our monthly bathhouse night was, and that the unfortunate incidents we experienced there weren’t random as I had once believed. I’ve even begun to accept that our church’s weekly beefcake review is likewise ill conceived. I’m still grappling with whether or not we should continue our customary fruity dance during the offertory, although as some have pointed out you might be overly sensitive on this particular item.
But I struggle with your focus on what we should stop doing, and am looking for specific advice beyond things like “cancel the men’s naked hot-tub event” and “stop having gay sex”. What would we be as Christians without homosexuality? What could possibly be left once we rule all of these gay things out? We need positive direction, not just warnings to stop being gay.
This hopefully seems absurd, because today at least Christianity doesn’t face the same widespread corruption regarding homosexuality that we do with feminism and courtly love. The question is absurd because we don’t (yet) struggle to imagine Christianity without homosexuality. However, this isn’t the case when it comes to Christianity and courtly love (or feminism). The corruption is so endemic that we struggle to recall what was corrupted in the first place.
This isn’t a simple question to answer because the Bible and/or the church (if Orthodox or RCC) doesn’t always offer specific scripts we should follow on (for one example) how Christians should court for marriage. We know that fornication is prohibited, and that if a person burns with passion they should marry and not deny each other sex. Likewise the Bible tells us to honor our father and our mother, so adopting a secular holiday set aside to honor fathers and using that time to disparage fathers is a problem, but this doesn’t tell us exactly how we should go about honoring fathers.
Other times the Bible is quite clear on what we should do (for example headship and submission), but because of the corruption we are repulsed by what it clearly tells us we should do. Either way, the crucial first step is to recognize the corruption both in general and in specific, and root out the specific false teachings we have unknowingly adopted. As we do this, the specific expressions of non cucked Christianity will vary, but this doesn’t mean we shouldn’t bother working to root out the corruption in the first place.
Once you identify the corruption, follow this detailed plan: