Is it a sin to go against God’s command?

In Sex and the Straw Man–an Exercise in Logic David Gudeman at Brain Legions charges that I relied on straw man arguments in my post Does romantic love sanctify married sex?  Gudeman writes:

It would be pretty ridiculous if Bayly said that for a married couple to have sex without romantic love or sexual attraction is sinful, but he didn’t say that. Bayly said sex that is not mutual is not as God designed and commands. It is not at all clear that “mutual” means “with romantic love” or “with sexual attraction”. From context, “mutual” seems to mean that both spouses freely agree to engage in sex; that neither spouse feels forced or coerced.

It is Gudeman who is missing the context though.  Pastor Bayly’s claim that:

sex that is not mutual is not sex as God designed and commands it.

came after he wrote (emphasis mine):

I responded: “Sex is a matter of love—not command. If your wife doesn’t want to love you, that’s a fundamental problem unlikely to yield to command without becoming brutish and degraded.

So Bayly was talking about love.  This leaves the question what kind of love?  Romantic (eros)?  Familial?  Agape?  Keep in mind that Bayly is talking about the wife not feeling love.   So perhaps he meant the wife is in violation of Titus 2:4.  But if the wife is sinning in this way, why would one sin require that she also commit the sin of defrauding her husband (1 Cor 7:5)?

Defraud ye not one the other, except it be with consent for a time, that ye may give yourselves to fasting and prayer; and come together again, that Satan tempt you not for your incontinency.

Pastor Bayly is of course free to clarify this.  Perhaps he really meant one sin by a wife demanded that she commit another, but I don’t think that is what he meant.  I also don’t think he meant a husband shouldn’t have sex with his wife if she isn’t showing agape love for him.

Given the context, romantic love is the obvious choice.  But again, Bayly could easily clear up any misunderstanding, either on his own blog, as a comment at Brain Legions, or in the comments section here.

Gudeman continues:

Also, and just as importantly, there is no talk of sin. Bayly seems to be quite deliberately making a weaker statement that does not imply sin. God’s design and command is for us to enjoy food. If you have to go on a diet that you do not enjoy are you sinning?

This is terrible logic coming from a post that sets out to teach logic.  Bayly wrote:

…sex that is not mutual is not sex as God designed and commands it.

If God commands that we have sex a certain way, and we have sex a different way, this would be a sin.  A proper food analogy would be if God commanded us to have meat with every meal.  Going vegan would be a sin, but dieting would not.

Grudeman continues, switching to my characterization of Milton’s argument:

First, note that word “brutish” which does not appear in the quote by Milton. Second, it would be pretty ridiculous if Milton said that X is the act of animals and therefore sinful. We do all kinds of things that animals do, and not only bodily functions. Animals play, enjoy the company of others, explore, and build homes, so it would be ridiculous to say that since something is an act of animals it is “therefore” sinful, but Milton didn’t say that either. The word “sinful” appears nowhere in the Milton quote, nor does any equivalent word. Like Bayly, Milton seems to be deliberately choosing a weaker way to say “not the best you could do” rather than “sinful”. It is a straw man to strengthen this deliberately weakened statement to something that makes it ridiculous.

I agree that Milton’s argument is ridiculous, but it is still the argument Milton is making.  If Grudeman had followed the link I provided when quoting Milton he would have found this out for himself.  However, the text/font in the link I provided was somewhat difficult to follow, so perhaps it will help Grudeman if I quote this source instead.  I’ll also expand the quote out slightly (emphasis mine):

And although copulation be considered among the ends of marriage, yet the act thereof in a right esteem can no longer be matrimonial, than it is an effect of conjugal love. When love finds itself utterly unmatched, and justly vanishes, nay rather cannot but vanish, the fleshly act indeed may continue, but not holy, not pure, not beseeming the sacred bond of marriage; being at best but an animal excretion, but more truely worse and more ignoble than that mute kindliness among the herds and flocks; in that proceeding as it ought from intellective principles, it participates of nothing rational, but that which the field and the fold equals. For in human actions the soul is the agent, the body in a manner passive. If then the body do out of sensitive force, what the soul complies not with how can man, and not rather something beneath man, be thought the doer?

Note that while “brutish” isn’t included in the quote, this really is what Milton is saying sex without romantic love is.

Next Grudeman follows up with a straw man of his own:

Both quotes he is discussing are about what makes sex good, not what sanctifies marriage. Bayly cannot reasonably be said to be talking about sanctification at all. Milton could arguably be paraphrased as saying that conjugal love sanctifies sex (not marriage), but that is a very implausible reading. A better reading is that sex without conjugal love is a violation of what is already sanctified.

I didn’t claim that Milton argued that romantic love sanctified marriage.  I do however have a guess at why he is confused in this way*.  What I wrote was:

The Puritan poet John Milton wrote in Tetrachordon (1645) that sex without romantic love in marriage was brutish, the act of animals, and therefore sinful:

Grudeman continues:

But even given Dalrock’s hostile reading–that conjugal love sanctified sex–it is not at all clear that Milton would therefore deny that marriage sanctifies sex because these are not contrary statements.

Again it is Grudeman who is twisting my arguments.  I didn’t say Milton denied that marriage sanctified sex.  What I said was that Milton argued that romantic love was required to sanctify married sex.  Normally I wouldn’t split hairs here, but it is appropriate in this case.  Milton is very clearly arguing that married sex without romantic love is brutish, and not befitting Christian marriage.  He argues that without romantic love:

the fleshly act indeed may continue, but not holy, not pure, not beseeming the sacred bond of marriage

Note that Milton asserts that without romantic love marital sex is “not holy, not pure”.  This is another way of saying that romantic love sanctifies marital sex.

*Milton makes his argument that married sex requires the sanctification of romantic love in the context of a piece he wrote to Parliament urging them to permit an early form of no fault divorce.  So Milton’s argument that if romantic love disappears marital sex is no longer sanctified is intended to bolster his argument that once romantic love disappears the marriage is no longer binding.

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53 Responses to Is it a sin to go against God’s command?

  1. p_q says:

    The irony of all this focus on ‘non-mutual’ love is that eve had NO CHOICE in adam, unless you believe the heretical story of lily. Eve was designed to serve and please adam she had no choice but to be his wife and lover, if anything God designed love between a man and woman with the man having authority and command over the woman as adam had over eve.

    In fact when they meet we only get adams reaction to her, her opinion of adam is irrelevant and unmentioned. She was never designed to be his equal or co-captain she was designed to fulfill his companionship and sexual needs.

  2. princeasbel says:

    But even given Dalrock’s hostile reading–that conjugal love sanctified sex–it is not at all clear that Milton would therefore deny that marriage sanctifies sex because these are not contrary statements. If I eat steak because it is good for me, this is not contrary to saying that I eat steak because it is tasty. Both can be true at once.

    You know, thinking someone is stupid isn’t hostile. Nor is it a sin. Sometimes people say dumb things, or they fail to communicate their thoughts properly. Maybe, just maybe, those people are responsible for the judgements they incur upon themselves? I.E. if you talk stupid, it’s your fault others think you’re stupid? Just maybe?

    But, as the original citations prove, Milton did mean to communicate a very foolish sentiment.

    Maybe Gudeman will read what Milton originally said and think, “Oh. So much for my hot-air about logic. Turns out I was so busy showing how smart I was that I couldn’t be bothered to check out the quote in its entirety before passing judgement. Maybe that means I’m the hostile one… Probably should apologize and re-assess the situation.”

    Ah, who am I kidding. He’ll just do what everyone else does. Vilify Dalrock some more and to heck with the facts. Why would I expect anything else…

    P.S. Lest anyone think it’s too much to expect Gudeman to check out the original quote, let me tell you- There are atheists, not Christians, who fight with feminists and SJW’s who do that on a regular basis. If atheists can be relied upon to go to the original sources quoted by secular academics, then Christians can be required to meet those same standards as well. I would do it, and have done so many, many times. I think it’s fair to hold Gudeman to that same standard.

  3. white says:

    Gudeman is pretending* that sex that is good in God’s sight is different from sex that is holy/sanctified. That’s the basis of his entire article and it’s an easy claim to debunk.

    *With Bayly’s approval, see the comments there

  4. drifter says:

    …sex that is not mutual is not sex as God designed and commands it….

    Where is this written?

  5. princeasbel says:

    @drifter

    …sex that is not mutual is not sex as God designed and commands it….

    Where is this written?

    I KNOW. This is such a stupid claim. Someone, give me the gosh-darn verse where this “command” is written. I challenge you, I DARE you. Stop bloviating and give me chapter and verse.

    Note to Dalrock: If you could delete my previous comment. It’s the same as this one, but badly formatted.

  6. Sharkly says:

    LOL. The Whorehorn Media crew are out for your scalp, Dalrock.
    You must have struck a tough blow against their Feminism. I eagerly anticipate your future installments of how you laid the Red Pill truth on them.
    I read their post last night, but decided against posting there in your defense, since I don’t want them to have my email address and be able to dox me later.
    to me the arguments over words are small compared to their bias against God’s plan for men and women and sex and marriage and society and Etc.

  7. Cane Caldo says:

    Gudeman deliberately ignored the original context of Tim Bayly’s words to pretend Dalrock made an argument in ignorance of Bayly’s context. That is lame. I am disappointed to see that Bayly and his son commented their approval.

  8. Nathan Bruno says:

    How could 1 Cor 7, wherein they are called conjugal rights, and there is a statement that they are not to be a deprived, mean that they “cannot be commanded”? Either definition of commanded would match the text: “to direct with specific authority or prerogative” or “to require authoritatively”. It’s also a sin to deny these rights; therefore, they can be required authoritatively, i.e., commanded.

    You’d think they’d be happy that the Christian wife can demand it, too.

    I can’t find a lot of space between violation of God’s design/command and sin, either.

  9. 7817 says:

    The defense is generally an obfuscation.

    Bayly said sex that is not mutual is not as God designed and commands. It is not at all clear that “mutual” means “with romantic love” or “with sexual attraction”. From context, “mutual” seems to mean that both spouses freely agree to engage in sex; that neither spouse feels forced or coerced.

    Note the words “it is not at all clear.” The defense of being an unclear writer is an extremely flimsy one, quickly remedied by clarity, if the person is honest. Doug Wilson and Tim Bayly both benefit more from being unclear on this issue than from being clear in their arguments, and so the common defense of them is that they were not clear.

  10. Scott says:

    My eyes glossed over a bit toward the end here.

    Follow Detis advice

    Do not marry a woman unless she absolutely cannot get enough of you.

  11. princeasbel says:

    @7817

    Note the words “it is not at all clear.” The defense of being an unclear writer is an extremely flimsy one, quickly remedied by clarity, if the person is honest. Doug Wilson and Tim Bayly both benefit more from being unclear on this issue than from being clear in their arguments, and so the common defense of them is that they were not clear.

    Exactly. 100% spot-on.

  12. Spike says:

    ”Romantic love” is the last bastion in secular society in general and in Christian culture where Gnosticism is alive and well. This notion of two disembodied spirits, floating up above mere carnality, and becoming intertwined as one above fleshly concerns and lusts, due to the sheer irresistible force of ”true love”, needs to be exposed.
    It is not Biblical. Nowhere in the Bible is ”love” portrayed in this way. raw sexual attraction is present, in the Songs of Solomon. Care and concern for married partners and their greater families is evident in the Old and New Testaments. Jesus defined love in His great call, “‘Greater love has no man than this, that he give his life for his friend” (John 15:13). Romantic love in these passages is not alluded to.
    Romantic love is essentially a pagan notion, derived from the Greeks. It made its’ way to us through the Romantic and Metaphysical poets that we still study in English for school. Coleridge, Blake, Cowley, Shakespeare (later) and in particular Donne, who engaged in ”conceits” in order to titillate the minds of women for…sex (consider his poem , ”The Flea”). Donne turned around at conversion, having dramatically prayed to God, ”I will never be free nor chaste, except Thou ravish me..”, yet this notion of the metaphysical still persists, Disney-fairy-tale like, throughout the Western World.
    And Another thing: Milton, CS Lewis, Spurgeon, and any other Christian apologist are just that. They are apologists, not CANONICAL. They are still fallible and they get things wrong or absorb incorrect presuppositions.

  13. Pingback: Is it a sin to go against God’s command? | Reaction Times

  14. Jonadab-the-Rechabite says:

    It would be pretty ridiculous if Bayly said that for a married couple to have sex without romantic love or sexual attraction is sinful…

    Bayly said sex that is not mutual is not as God designed and commands.

    From the Westminster Shorter Catecism ( a confessional document do the PCA, Bayly’s denomination)
    Q. 14. What is sin?
    A. Sin is any want of conformity unto, or transgression of, the law of God.

    Seems like he is calling that which is not as God designed and commands as sin. So the question is, if a husband wants to have sex with his wife and she is not so “mutual” which party is the one sinning? Seems like the apostle Paul makes it clear the one not wanting sex, sandbagging, reluctant, starfishing, or just plain dispassionate, is the one who is want of conformity to the design and plan of God. My reading is that God wants marriages sexually supercharged.

  15. Thank you for the reply, Dalrock. I will have to read it more carefully to see if I can improve my logic on the issue.

    [D: Welcome.]

  16. Kevin says:

    Let’s say the logic is bad. Is the point of the other author just to defend Bayly? The easiest way is for Bayly to clarify that sex is sanctified by marriage and not the other way around and for everyone to clearly state that and the man or the woman’s feelings about it Have nothing to do with it’s worthiness. They have something to do with it in practicality but even that Paul says is wrong – but again in the real world sometimes that’s a little tough.

    Logic or not logic in interpretation that’s the issue at hand and if people believe our host is wrong that they should directly attack the conclusion not the artfulness of his response to others.

  17. white says:

    If I’m a Churchian reading all this now, my next move will be to declare that marital sex without romantic love is “holy/sanctified”, but romantic love is what makes it “good”, while keeping “good” here as ambiguous as possible. When criticized, I will claim that I merely stated my personal preference on sex, that sex with romantic love is what makes it good TO ME.

    That way I get to not offend women, and at the same time those who truly obey the Bible will have nothing to accuse me with. Just saying.

  18. Paul says:

    I agree consent should be mutual, which it is once you voluntarily enter marriage, after that we are to follow the command:

    The wife does not have authority over her own body, but the husband. Likewise the husband does not have authority over his own body, but the wife.

    So isn’t the whole mutual consent actually distracting from the core issue: mutual consent happens before MARRIAGE, not before each and every initiation of sex.

    Note this is also how we arrived at the “marital rape” laws; which church ever protested these laws?

  19. Opus says:

    Milton (like Governor Reagan) was when it came to marriage motivated by his own personal difficulties – one can empathise with both Reagan and Milton – yet pleasurable though sexual intercourse may be (so I have heard) the primary purpose is the propagation of children and as Paul rightly says consent is given before marriage and whatever one may be feeling at the time of the act of coitus, romantic love is not the litmus test of the validity of the sexual act – just how romantic exactly were you feeling – on a scale of one to ten – and did that level of romance alter at any time during the act? Hmmm.

    If as Spike incitefully observes romantic love derives from the Greeks then as it was not love for their wives but for their young male lovers – not necessarily as in the case of Socrates, acted upon – is not romantic love just a bit ghey.

  20. freebird says:

    Let’s take a few steps back and have a look at the macro instead of the micro.
    Christ specifically said the Unpardonable sin was was worshiping the anti-Christ.
    It involves denying the Patriarchal Godship from The Son.
    Sound familiar?
    I’m not directly saying matriarchal churchians are the anti-Christ.
    However this Jezebel spirit IS of the anti-Christ spirit.
    Thou shalt NOT have other Gods before me,said God.
    The Whore of Babylon sits with one foot on the shore (The Church community)
    One foot in the ocean (The body of people deceived.)
    Come out of her!

  21. freebird says:

    Reminds me of the British joke:
    The woman closes her eyes and thinks of The Queen whilst husband finishes his business.
    That was never a male CRIME before,it just was,for,um,like PROCREATION

  22. freebird says:

    “the apostle Paul makes it clear the one not wanting sex, sandbagging, reluctant, starfishing, or just plain dispassionate, is the one who is want of conformity to the design and plan of God.
    Exactly,God’s plan is for Procreation.
    Not worshiping women and providing abortion on demand.
    Metaphorically preaching abortion from The Pulpit.
    Well hurr durr why are the whites below replacement rate?
    1.The dude who studied rat over population found the trigger for the suicide gene:
    It was the rejection of the young mice BY THE MOTHER that made them never breed again.
    2.Feminism is a death-cult
    3.Be careful what you worship if you believe in a day of judgement

  23. info says:

    Sin is in the Hebrew. “Missing the Mark”.

    Falling short of Holiness and of Imaging God. A corruption of the good.

  24. info says:

    @Paul
    ”I agree consent should be mutual, which it is once you voluntarily enter marriage”
    Plus the Father’s Blessing. The father gives his daughter away to a man he can trust and who has been properly vetted.

  25. wodansthane says:

    Bayly, and Milton, are merely deferring to the FI. If the woman, being more virtuous, decides that she is unhaaapy with sex then it cannot possibly be something she has to do. The command of GOD notwithstanding.

  26. Gary Eden says:

    For all its talk on love, the Greek word for Romantic love, eros, is not found even once in the New Testament. And its use in the Greek Septuigent Old Testament is almost exclusively negative.

    To say romantic love is necessary in any way is adding to the scriptures.

    It is not eros that sancfifies sex but authority: the consent of the father to give her in marriage. That is tge Biblical model in both Old and New Testements.

  27. JRob says:

    Bayly, and Milton, are merely deferring to the FI. If the woman, being more virtuous, decides that she is unhaaapy with sex then it cannot possibly be something she has to do. The command of GOD notwithstanding.

    This.
    Sat in a “small group” on Sanctity of Life Sunday, chin in palm, listened to supposedly believing women of all ages/walks of life what if, defend, and hamster abortion. When it all ended, the only statement I made the entire session, “It’s either right or it’s wrong.”

    They don’t submit to their husbands = they don’t submit to God.

  28. Dalrock says:

    @Opus

    the primary purpose is the propagation of children

    This was something that as I understand it the Puritans changed. Originally this was the case, with a lesser purpose being “mutual love and companionship”. According to Leland Ryken in his book The Worldly Saints, Puritans decided the mutual love and companionship should be first, and procreation second or third in importance. Few Puritans took this to the logical conclusion that Milton did, and in fact Milton’s essays on divorce were not well received by other Puritans.

  29. Swanny River says:

    Based on this post’s title, I expected this to be about Sharkly not going to church.

  30. BillyS says:

    Many things in life should be done with more joy than they are. Our attitudes in our walk with God should always be wonderful and great. We are not sinning when we push through something in spite of feelings. Neither is a man and wife.

    Note that feelings can follow sex, especially for a woman. Telling her they must precede it leaves it only for those who are immoral and all the junk Courtly Love brings with it.

    Side note: Read a dating profile recently (my entertainment at times) to find a woman wanted a man to complete her. I have NEVER seen one that wanted to be the completion to a man.

  31. Opus says:

    @Dalrock

    The Book of Common Prayer (1662) states the reasons for which matrimony was instituted: ‘firstly, it was ordained for the procreation of children etc etc’. Mutual society and help comes in a poor third after number two which is to avoid fornication although earlier it warns that matrimony is not ‘to satisfy men’s carnal lusts and appetites like brute beasts’ – a tricky balancing act. Given that we sent all our Puritans to America and given that romance seems to be now the primary justification for marriage (other than a green card) can we say that no-fault divorce, marital rape and so on are the natural American consequences of Puritan thought? I cannot but mention that an earlier Opus (and presumably related to me) was thrown out of the Massachusettes colony in 1642 – a Fifth Monarchy Man. I might have been American.

  32. Dalrock says:

    Opus

    The Book of Common Prayer (1662) states the reasons for which matrimony was instituted: ‘firstly, it was ordained for the procreation of children etc etc’. Mutual society and help comes in a poor third after number two which is to avoid fornication although earlier it warns that matrimony is not ‘to satisfy men’s carnal lusts and appetites like brute beasts’ – a tricky balancing act.

    I just dusted off my copy of Worldly Saints. Here is what Ryken wrote on the subject:

    The order adopted in the Book of Common Prayer was (1) the procreation of children, (2) the restraint and remedy of sin, and (3) mutual society, help and comfort. James Johnson has written a whole book to show that as Puritan thought developed, the first and third purposes of marriage became reversed from the order in the Prayer Book.

    I’ll add the caveat that the more I research the issue, the less I trust Ryken’s analysis/judgement. In one case he mistook Perkins quoting Jerome for Perkins’ own words. And at the same time he quoted Milton’s Tetrachordon without noting that it was a tract arguing for no fault divorce and therefore rejected by the vast bulk of Puritans.

    Given that we sent all our Puritans to America and given that romance seems to be now the primary justification for marriage (other than a green card) can we say that no-fault divorce, marital rape and so on are the natural American consequences of Puritan thought?

    I agree with this, with the caveat that the source runs deeper. The root is courtly love (chivalry). Even without the Puritans trying to tame courtly love by integrating it into Christian marriage, you still have the Order of the Garter.

  33. Novaseeker says:

    The Puritans weren’t big on the BCP in any case, were they? Wasn’t it the Parliamentary Puritans who suspended the use of the BCP in 1645? I’m also pretty sure that the folks who ended up, inter alia, in Massachusetts were no devotees of the BCP.

  34. Opus says:

    @Novaseeker

    The Mayflower – a one way cruise ship – was organised from 49 Palace Way. Canterbury. The eastern part of the County of Kent (in which Canterbury is situate – our counties are somewhat larger than yours) was and remained highly non-conformist. I am conflicted: my Father’s ancestors being of the non-conformist persuasion; my Mother’s with more than one Anglican Bishop including one of Canterbury, of the established church). In England the BCP is so prevalent that it’s language is the very air we breath and seems to us entirely natural. I wont link it a second time but the clip form Four Weddings and a Funeral is pure BCP as I am sure are the other three weddings and the funeral therein.

  35. Novaseeker says:

    Opus —

    Did the Puritans and other non-conformists like Milton really embrace the BCP — I mean, other than as may have been legally required? I do understand that the language of it has been absorbed in England in a way similar to Shakespeare and the KJV (Authorised Version). Here in the US, it isn’t as influential, in part because the non-conformists were dominant here from the beginning. Adherents of the established church were here, too, and so the BCP was here as well very early, but it has never had anything close to the influence here as it has had in England, either religiously or in a literary sense — unlike the KJV, which has been very influential here. Interestingly, the version of the BCP that the “Episcopal Church” (the non-established successor to the Church of England here) adopted after the independence was not exactly the 1662 BCP, but a modified one that incorporated elements from the 1760s version from Scotland (as well as other changes that related to no longer being under the Crown, as one would expect).

    On Milton, do you know whether he used the BCP (again, other than as may have been formally required by law)? It’s an interesting question in terms of what his own views on marriage were, as a non-conformist/Puritan.

  36. Oscar says:

    RE: Book of Common Prayer

    Here’s the relevant quote:

    https://www.episcopalchurch.org/files/book_of_common_prayer.pdf

    The union of husband and wife in heart, body, and mind is intended by God for their mutual joy; for the help and comfort given one another in prosperity and adversity; and, when it is God’s will, for the procreation of children and their nurture in the knowledge and love of the Lord. Therefore marriage is not to be entered into unadvisedly or lightly, but reverently, deliberately, and in accordance with the purposes for which it was instituted by God.

    The order is different. Also, note the wife’s vows omit the word “obey”.

    The Celebrant says to the woman

    N., will you have this man to be your husband; to live together in the covenant of marriage? Will you love him, comfort him, honor and keep him, in sickness and in health; and, forsaking all others, be faithful to him as long as you both shall live?

    The Woman answers

    I will.

    …..

    In the Name of God, I, N., take you, N., to be my husband,
    to have and to hold from this day forward, for better for
    worse, for richer for poorer, in sickness and in health, to love
    and to cherish, until we are parted by death. This is my
    solemn vow.

    Anybody know when that changed?

  37. Oscar says:

    Okay, that last link was for the silly Episcopalians. Here’s from the Church of England.

    https://www.churchofengland.org/prayer-and-worship/worship-texts-and-resources/book-common-prayer/form-solemnization-matrimony

    DEARLY beloved, we are gathered together here in the sight of God, and in the face of this Congregation, to join together this man and this woman in holy Matrimony; which is an honourable estate, instituted of God in the time of man’s innocency, signifying unto us the mystical union that is betwixt Christ and his Church; which holy estate Christ adorned and beautified with his presence, and first miracle that he wrought, in Cana of Galilee; and is commended of Saint Paul to be honourable among all men: and therefore is not by any to be enterprised, nor taken in hand, unadvisedly, lightly, or wantonly, to satisfy men’s carnal lusts and appetites, like brute beasts that have no understanding; but reverently, discreetly, advisedly, soberly, and in the fear of God; duly considering the causes for which Matrimony was ordained.

    First, It was ordained for the procreation of children, to be brought up in the fear and nurture of the Lord, and to the praise of his holy Name.

    Secondly, It was ordained for a remedy against sin, and to avoid fornication; that such persons as have not the gift of continency might marry, and keep themselves undefiled members of Christ’s body.

    Thirdly, It was ordained for the mutual society, help, and comfort, that the one ought to have of the other, both in prosperity and adversity. Into which holy estate these two persons present come now to be joined. Therefore if any man can shew any just cause, why they may not lawfully be joined together, let him now speak, or else hereafter for ever hold his peace.

    It also includes the word “obey” in the woman’s vows.

    N. WILT thou have this man to thy wedded husband, to live together after God’s ordinance in the holy estate of Matrimony? Wilt thou obey him, and serve him, love, honour, and keep him, in sickness and in health; and, forsaking all other, keep thee only unto him, so long as ye both shall live?

    ….

    I N. take thee N. to my wedded husband, to have and to hold from this day forward, for better for worse, for richer for poorer, in sickness and in health, to love, cherish, and to obey, till death us do part, according to God’s holy ordinance; and thereto I give thee my troth.

    That’s good. Unless, of course, you’re Prince Harry, who is apparently determined to be a chump.

  38. Paul says:

    matrimony is not ‘to satisfy men’s carnal lusts and appetites like brute beasts’

    Contrary to Scripture, which tells us it IS to satisfy carnal lusts; if you can control them, you should not marry at all!

    As I’ve stated elsewhere Augustine’s view on ‘carnal lusts’ and sexuality pictures men’s sexual desires in an extremely bad light. As such it seems blue-pill avant-la-lettre.

  39. feeriker says:

    They don’t submit to their husbands = they don’t submit to God.

    Between 95 and 99 percent of people of either sex who call themselves Christians (and that certainly includes the “leadership” of the church) obviously haven’t submitted themselves to Christ. If they had, the church would be having at least a minimal impact on the culture and wouldn’t be in the state of collapse it’s now in.

  40. Jesus Rodriguez de la Torre says:

    A major, perhaps the primary purpose of marriage, is so a man can satisfy his sexual desire in a manner God approves: 1 Corinthians 7:9 But if they do not have self-control, let them marry; for it is better to marry than to burn with passion.
    When I politely declined the naked nurse who awoke me by straddling me in medical school ( I was on call at the Jackson Hospital ICU); I realized the temptations were getting difficult to resist. Therefore I asked my parents to find me a wife as I had no time to date (med school + a 30 hour job + finishing my career as an advanced Xray tech left little time).
    When I mention this in Sunday school, along with the FACT that the Bible clearly states that marriage is the union of the flesh and emphatically denies the union of mind and spirit (for death ends marriage); I get many people irritated but they cannot argue.
    Reproduction is NOT the sole purpose or even major for marriage, given some are sterile and there is NOT call to divorce on the basis of sterility. The fact that God brought animals as sexually compatible to Adam before fashioning Eve out of Adam (by subtraction of information, as genetically woman is contained within man, and not vice versa); made the very point that marriage was about sex. It was not good for the man not to have a sexual partner, and bestiality would not do.
    The main reason to marry for both sexes is clearly spelled out in 1 Cor 7: 9-37 is sex. That is antithetical to courtly love and all romantic notions. It is congruent with the instincts God has placed within us. That in some these instincts have gone horribly wrong, as in promiscuity, homosexuality, bestiality etc do not change the Good basic instincts that most love songs still echo.
    A wife who denies sex is breaking the primary purpose of marriage and exposing her husband to temptation and is guilty before God unless there is a legitimate reason such as illness or mutual agreement.
    Notice mutual agreement is needed to NOT have sex; not to have sex. Because of our biology, it is generally necessary the man be willing, at least for penetration. It is not in needed the wife be excited. At very minimum she is required to provide “starfish sex”. That much both the Church and English common law used to understand. For centuries it was a matter of law that a husband could not be charged with rape of his wife, only of assault if there was demonstrable physical injury (which required physical proof). As of now that common sense has been lost.

  41. BillyS says:

    No, the primary purpose of marriage is to bound 2 people (man and woman) to further God’s plan on the Earth. Sex is a very nice benefit and the way we are authorized to participate that in the NT.

    Have to go back to the beginning and work from there.

  42. Gary Eden says:

    Ecclesiastes makes the point that sex is a reward for our labors in this life. Pleasure via sex is very much a primary function of marriage. Not the only but one of the chief ones.

    In this we see the rot doesnt go back to the Puritans or even courtly love but all the way to the 1st to 3rd centuries and the insistance of the early church fathers that sexual pleasure was wrong.

    I made the point about eros earlier, its not the foundation. But neither is it wrong, as Song of Solomon so aptly demonstrates.

  43. Jesus Rodriguez de la Torre says:

    It occurs to me that to say that sex is designed to be mutual is absurd on multiple levels.
    1- on a biological level, it is the man who penetrates both on a macro and micro level. The egg is a passive immobile target that awaits being conquered behind a protective wall (zona pellucida).
    2- on a Scriptural level, it is the man who leaves father and mother, and cleaves (invades, cuts apart) his wife and makes her his flesh. It is by the will of the husband that a child is made says Scripture.
    3- as a spiritual metaphor, it is Christ that takes takes the Church which is incapable of seeking Him, slays the individual believer and causes new life to occur.
    If marriage is a deep mystery and/or metaphor for Christ and the Church; the Church is completely passive in receiving Christ. If you are Reformed, Grace (the invasion of God) is irresistible. If you are Arminian, then to resist the violent invasion of God is the ultimate unforgivable sin. Either way, the Church is passive and Christ disciplines her.

  44. Isabelle says:

    ” sex that is not mutual is not sex as God designed and commands it….”

    Another quack who pretends to be God’s spokesman ? Great !
    What he says fits perfectly the re-definition of sexual “morality” by feminists . CONSENT has become the new heathen god in the area of sexual “morality” . If sex is consensual , then it is ok .
    So , consensual sex between two men is oK , two women ok , or me as a married woman , if I consent to have sex with a man who is not my husband , it is ok …
    HOW can a true man of God fall into this trap just like the post modern world has and changed marital DUTY into the satanic lie (based on consent ) marital rape ?
    Marital rape is a pure product of the feminist lie.

    However , there IS a notion of consent in 1 Corinthians 7:5 . It is what we could call consensual … ABSTINENCE . “Do not deprive each other except maybe for a short time and with mutual
    consent “.
    But those quacks in their You Tube sermons never preach that . They preach consensual sex in marriage , which is the perfect path to a dead bedroom and Satan’s temptations .
    Actually , preaching consensual sex in marriage goes down to telling people not to have sex -as if they were not married.
    So , we can say without a doubt that the consensual marital sex doctrine is a doctrine of demons.

  45. thedeti says:

    Modern Churchians have seized on all this chivalrous language to outright state that unless romantic love/emotional attachment/emotional connection precedes sex, then the sex is illegitimate and should not take place, even in marriage. Sex must always take place in a context of love/attachment/connection, or it is illegitimate and not permitted, even in marriage.

    So women have seized on this to state that unless they feel love, they feel attracted, they are attached and connected (which really means tingles, sexual attraction, and sexual desire), then they should not be required to have sex with their husbands. And as Dalrock and Cane have shown, an entire false theology has arisen to support this claim. So now we have theological heavyweights telling us something slightly different: wives’ vaginas are holy scales which measure the worth, value, and Christianity of their husbands. Al Mohler tells us that husbands must earn their way into the marital bed, and that the way we know a man is a good husband and a good Christian man is that his wife is sexually attracted to him. Because, well, good Christian women are not sexually attracted to “bad” men or heathens. (heh)

    What this all gets down to, at least to me, is unattracted, disaffected, maritally and sexually dissatisfied women searching for moral cover to justify their refusing sex to their husbands. “If I don’t FEEL attracted or FEEL like it or WANT it, I shouldn’t have to. It’s HIS job to make me FEEL it. (Which hearkens back to most women’s premarital sex days in which the sex was good and justified and “right” because she was sexually attracted.) The problem is that most men can’t produce those kinds of feelings in their wives; and even if they could at one time, they can’t do it long term, or they can’t do it consistently. Except for a few exceptions, like SAM and SSM’s husband and Scott.

    This all gets back to Cane’s pithy pronouncement that women have a tendency toward being brassy whores, and much of what has been discussed is how to get brassy whores to want sex with men and how to be the kind of men brassy whores want to have sex with.

    Rejecting the false theology goes a long way toward restoring proper order. The problem you run into is men having sex with wives when wives don’t really want to, which in today’s day and age is rape. And people wonder why men are starting to avoid marriage altogether.

    Scott said up there to follow my advice, which is “don’t marry unless she can’t get enough of you”. Today’s society unfortunately is so hostile to men that that’s the only choice. Yes, that’s catering to brassy whoredom, but today, there are no other sorts of women.

  46. thedeti says:

    The problem with the “love sanctifies sex” argument is that it doesn’t square with women’s ability and willingness to have sex with men they don’t know and don’t love. We know women do this – including Christian women.

    So according to women and the new false theology, it is OK for women to have brutish, animalistic, lustful, tingles-based sex premised purely upon sexual desire. Not only is that OK – that is the only sort of “proper” sex, according to our new false prophets.

    However, it is not OK and it is sinful for men to have brutish, animalistic, lustful, tingles-based sex (that Dalrock called “like a rutting buck”), even in marriage (unless the woman ALSO wants that sex, in that way). In fact, it is a sign of grave sin that a man even wants to have that sort of sex, or thinks about sex in that way.

  47. Novaseeker says:

    So according to women and the new false theology, it is OK for women to have brutish, animalistic, lustful, tingles-based sex premised purely upon sexual desire. Not only is that OK – that is the only sort of “proper” sex, according to our new false prophets.

    Not only that.

    Remember, some of these pastors are saying that the woman’s sexual attraction is God’s barometer of a man’s godliness — it’s sacred, in other words, and indicates whether a man is obeying God or not.

  48. Anonymous Reader says:

    Yes, the whole “aroma of love” or whatever Wilson called it can get expensive in more ways that one. A “Perfume of Great Price”…

  49. thedeti says:

    Remember, some of these pastors are saying that the woman’s sexual attraction is God’s barometer of a man’s godliness — it’s sacred, in other words, and indicates whether a man is obeying God or not.

    Yes, that’s what I was saying in that prior comment where i said pastors are telling us that wives’ vaginas are holy scales for measuring the worth, value, and Christianity of their husbands.

  50. Novaseeker says:

    Yes, that’s what I was saying in that prior comment where i said pastors are telling us that wives’ vaginas are holy scales for measuring the worth, value, and Christianity of their husbands.

    Ah, I see — missed that.

    To me this is the core — it’s where the whole religion is basically shifted around, away from anything that came before, and towards women’s sexual attractions and romantic feelings being the barometer for men’s moral righteousness. If one were sitting around with a blank piece of paper trying to think of ways that the church could get more heretical when it came to male-female relations, it’s hard to imagine something worse than that, really.

  51. Isabelle says:

    @ Novaseeker

    I cannot believe how a man can stay one minute more in such a “church” !!
    If I were a man , I would run away from such a place and advise all my brothers (who still have not opened their eyes) to do the same .
    And I would take my wife out of such a “church” and teach her the truth of marital duty AT HOME stated in the Bible as a fortress against Satan’s temptations for all those , male and female ( I make it clear that women can also be tempted , this is for all the spiritual quacks who pretend that women /wives are asexual and derive their satanic manipulation from this false allegation ).
    Such churches are poisoned to the core .

  52. Pingback: Warhorn responds. | Dalrock

  53. Pingback: The Mosh Pit of Sex Analysists | Σ Frame

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