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Fellowship of Saints and Sinners

Fellowship of Saints and Sinners

Biblical Inerrancy, Sexual Purity and Christian Code Words: What You’re Saying

At a recent meeting of the Republican National Committee, former governor of Arkansas and Baptist pastor Mike Huckabee said this: "And if the Democrats want to insult the women of America by making them believe that they are helpless without Uncle Sugar coming in and providing for them a prescription each month for birth control, because they cannot control their libido or their reproductive system without the help of the government, then so be it."

At a recent meeting of the Republican National Committee, former governor of Arkansas and Baptist pastor Mike Huckabee said this: “And if the Democrats want to insult the women of America by making them believe that they are helpless without Uncle Sugar coming in and providing for them a prescription each month for birth control, because they cannot control their libido or their reproductive system without the help of the government, then so be it.”

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One thing that keeps me showing up at this intersection between God and life is you and your musings. I hope you’ll keep leaving them here. Here is what some of you have been saying…

Saint and sinner Briana from Wheaton, IL had this to say in response to Centuries of Institutional Church Chauvinism…Based on a Mistake?: I’m so impressed by your writing and continue to avidly read what you write on this column. My question on this would be: for seekers, wouldn’t this call into question both Biblical inerrancy as well as the questions, why would God “perpetuate” centuries of chauvinism if He had the capacity to omit the error somehow? Just a question, as I don’t know whether these things are applicable.

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In response to Briana I write: First, thank you for reading! I really appreciate your engagement of these issues and these questions are right-on. Second, your question inspired me to research the definition and history of “biblical inerrancy.” Interestingly, biblical inerrancy only applies to original manuscripts—-so, in other words, it is technically not a conflict for evangelicals to uphold their view that the Bible is inerrant while also acknowledging the possibility that revisions of those original manuscripts are erroneous. As for seekers and whether this sort of conversation might close their minds to Christianity…I tend to agree with St. Anselm that “faith seeks understanding” and that all Christians should at the end of the day be “seekers.” Thanks again for reading, and I hope you’ll keep coming back to converse here at this intersection.

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Saint and sinner Jennifer, responding to Flirt to Convert: The Promise and Peril of Missionary Dating—which I’m now noticing was a very popular post for this site with 399 shares— asks this: How did you navigate the possibility of sexual temptation in your dating relationship with an unbeliever? It seems that a couple of years of dating would be a long time for a non-Christian man to not engage in sex or pressure his girlfriend to engage in it. I’m glad that everything worked out for you both. But is it wise to recommend dating non-Christian men to Christian women, given that men typically have stronger sex drives?

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I’ve suggested to Jennifer that her question be put before the rest of us saints and sinners at this intersection between God and life. What is your wisdom here? I’ve looked for my response to Jennifer and can’t find it for some reason…but to summarize my response, I would say that no, I’m not recommending dating non-Christian men; nor am I recommending dating Christian men who (based on my own very unscientific personal experience) have just about as many hang-ups in the arena of sexuality as non-Christian men. (My post in response to a friend whose husband has a porn addiction is one example.) And, for more personal experience in the arena of premarital sex, you might also read my chapter “True Love Waits” in Grace Sticks.

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All of this to say…from my married vantage point, which is no promised land either, I can say that the whole dating scene looks pretty depressing for contemporary singles these days, and my heart goes out to all men and ladies having to traverse it. May you walk carefully and avoid the landmines, with God’s help. And, contrary to what Mike Huckabee would have us believe, many of us, not just women who are motivated to use birth control, have probably at one time or another experienced strong sexual libidos.

Finally, saint and sinner Andre added one of his pet peeves to the list of Christian Code Wordsthis second post adds an addition.Here is Andre: I really hate this one: “God wants you to get out of your comfort zone.” Double barf. I have two problems with this. First, it uses such needlessly negative reinforcement, why not say, God wants to expand your comfort zone? Does it really always have to be uncomfortable for it to be from God? I know that growth is not always comfortable, but not always. But the larger issue is this. When a person says, “God wants you to get out of your comfort zone,” it’s code for saying, I want you to live up to my expectations, or conform to my agenda, but I’m going to use God’s name because if I say it’s from God, you can’t argue with me. After all, it’s God talking, not me.

Andre, Briana and Jennifer, keep the brilliance coming. Got any nuggets to share with them and me? Leave them below, and keep me writing here at this intersection between life and God.

 

  • Kristina Robb-Dover

    Thanks for sharing your thoughts, Gary. In general, “inerrancy” is just a loaded term that I typically prefer to avoid. Usually it gets bandied about, for example, to support notions that Genesis is scientific proof that God literally created the world in six days…so I appreciate some of your frustration here. Keep coming back! You’re welcome anytime. Kristina

  • http://www.lutherwasnotbornagain.com/ Gary

    Almost all Christian doctrines are based on the New Testament of the Bible. But, how do Christians know that these 27 books are the inerrant, inspired words of God, as Christians tell us?

    Answer: A bunch of fallible, scientifically illiterate Churchmen in the second, third, and fourth centuries said so! That’s it!

    When and where did God say that a bunch of old Churchmen have the authority to determine what is and what is not his Word? When and where did God say that Saul/Paul of Tarsus was speaking on his behalf? Or the writers of the Gospels? Or James? Or Peter? Or any other writer of the New Testament? Even if the apostles themselves had voted unanimously for the 27 books of the current New Testament to be designated as the “Word of God”, that still would not prove that God had authorized them to do so. We have no evidence that the Eleven achieved a state of perfection and omniscience on Pentecost. They, like every other human being, were fallible. So where is the evidence that God left a list of what should and what should not be considered his Word in a new testament?

    Answer: No where!

    We have no evidence from the Bible or anywhere else that God gave Christians a list of what is and what is not his Word! Christians have created an “inerrant, inspired, you-are-damned-to-Hell-if-you-don’t-believe-it” Holy Book based solely on the opinions of men living almost 2,000 years ago.

    Bombshell: Christians have zero evidence that proves the New Testament of the Bible to be the Word of God; the inerrant message of the Creator of the Universe to mankind. Zero!

  • Kristina Robb-Dover

    Thanks so much for stopping by and leaving your feedback. I’m reposting it for the enrichment of the rest of us. Best, Kristina

  • Missionary Dating

    Based on my 20 years of marriage to a non-believer, my choice now is to date only believers. I fell in love with a man who is an agnostic. Some people told me, with great judgment, that it was a sin to marry him. Others told me that God had entrusted him to my loving care. The reality was this: my relationship with God suffered,and we lacked a shared life map and commitment to God that are necessary to a good marriage. I understand now in sharp detail why we are not to be unequally yoked. I don’t date anyone who is not a Christian. If I date a non-Christian, I may find myself right back in love and justifying why “it’ll be okay” to marry him. And who knows? Maybe hearing that my faith is that important to me may plant a seed in a non-believer. May God bless you.

  • Pingback: Reality Marriage: Are You A Sneaker, Quasher or Restorer? - Fellowship of Saints and Sinners

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