Tag Archives: Kevin DeYoung

Can a person be postmodern and a Christian at the same time?

Can a person be postmodern and a Christian? Not for long
Can a person be postmodern and a Christian? Let’s look at their leader

Wow. Postmodern “Christian” Brian McLaren has completely abandoned traditional Christianity. McLaren, you may already know, spear-headed the “emergent church” movement – an attempt to fuse postmodern relativism with liberal Christianity.

Greg Koukl and Kevin DeYoung analyze his latest book “A New Kind of Christianity”.

The MP3 file is here.

Details:

Kevin DeYoung – Brian McLaren’s New Kind of Christianity
Host: Greg Koukl

Guest: Kevin DeYoung – Brian McLaren’s “New Kind of Christianity” (00:00:00)
Commentary: Reality vs. Religion? The Modern Upper Story Leap (00:56:39)
Guest: Dennis Prager – Reality vs. Religion (01:52:25)

We’re interested in the first hour of the three-hour show.

Topics of hour one:

  • What is Brian’s view of Creation?
  • What is Brian’s view of the Fall?
  • What is Brian’s view of Scripture?
  • What is Brian’s view of Truth?
  • What is Brian’s view of sin and Hell?
  • What is Brian’s view of the Fall?
  • What is Brian’s view of atonement?
  • How did Brian’s leftist political views infect his theology?
  • How did postmodernism affect Brian’s epistemology?
  • How faithful is Brian in interpreting the text?

There’s also a nice blog post about Brian McLaren by Melinda from Stand to Reason, too.

Excerpt:

McLaren doesn’t think the Bible is to be taken literally. For instance, the Garden of Eden story isn’t about sin and the Fall, rather it’s a “compassionate coming of age story.”  Consequently, the whole idea of sin and Hell is a horrible overreaction and has caused the church to offer a violent message and image all these years.  It follows from this interpretation then, that there is no need for the cross and Jesus’ death and resurrection.  Those are violent ideas resulting from a bad reading of the Bible.

And a couple of longer reviews are linked.

Tim Challies and Kevin DeYoung have written excellent and more in-depth reviews of McLaren’s new book and I highly recommend them.

I highly recommend you listen to this podcast and if you know anyone who is being influenced by the (non) religious left, take a look at the articles, especially the DeYoung article, which is quite good.

A generous “orthodoxy”?

And finally, here is a review of another much earlier Brian McLaren book by Biola University professor of philosophy Doug Geivett – one of my absolute favorite people. This is back when McLaren was just starting to leave orthodox Christianity behind.

Excerpt:

Brian McLaren’s book A Generous Orthodoxy (Zondervan, 2004) has been called a manifesto of the “emerging church” — a movement that is rethinking Christianity against the backdrop of postmodernism. McLaren is the founding pastor of Cedar Ridge Community Church in Spencerville, Md.

[…]In using the term “orthodoxy” for his position, McLaren is making a political move to subvert traditional evangelical theology. “Orthodoxy,” as he uses it, is whatever happens to be in vogue and culturally dominant. Also, an important theme among postmodernists has to do with the nature of belief — they doubt that people have, or need, good reasons to believe as they do, so they emphasize behavior over belief. (This probably explains why McLaren’s book relies less on evidence and argumentation and more on rhetoric.) However, in de-emphasizing the importance of belief, McLaren and other postmodernists overlook three things.

First, belief is the engine that drives behavior. The best way to cure wrong action is to identify false beliefs. Second, all people — even postmodernists — have definite beliefs about the things that matter most. They can’t help it. While McLaren resists the invitation to state clearly what he believes — for example, about the eternal destiny of nonbelievers — surely he has some view of the matter and that view influences his approach to the proclamation of the gospel. (As a pastor, he should have good ideas about this and a host of other issues of theological significance.) Third — though postmodernists sneer at the idea of evidence — evidence matters because it’s how we determine what’s true and is crucial to ordering our lives according to truth. In this respect, the postmodernist is out of step with the culture because human beings are by nature evidence-gatherers.

Very important to understand where these postmodern “Christians” are coming from, and where they end up when they’ve worked their mystical anti-realism through to its conclusions.

How do children end up fatherless? One woman’s story

Dina sent me this revealing article from the UK Daily Mail. It tells the story of a woman whose children are fatherless.

Excerpt:

My marriage ended, without rancour or argument, 18 months after it had begun. There was no recrimination, just a realisation, as sharp as physical pain, that we would never — could never — agree on one fundamental point.

I wanted children; my husband Anthony did not. You may think we should have resolved this crucial issue long before we bought a house and vowed to spend the rest of our lives together, but love had a way of blinding us to the depth of our disagreement.

[…]Today, I am 37 and a single mum to gorgeous three-month-old twin boys Charlie and William. They were conceived through IVF, using my eggs and sperm from an anonymous donor, and the love I feel for them is all-consuming.

[…]Anthony, a policeman, was easy and fun; we chatted comfortably together, and when we started dating I was impressed by his integrity. He had passionate views about fairness and loyalty. He was attractive, too — tall, dark hair, blue eyes — and I felt we could build a loving relationship together.

It seems to me that many women tend to prefer the wrong kind of men these days when it comes to marriage and parenting. Marriage requires a man to have a strong moral compass. That way, he can be expected to behave morally, himself. A man with a strong moral compass fuldills his moral obligations, but he also makes moral judgments. And women need to prefer men who make these moral judgments. The woman’s phrase “Easy and fun” tells me that her choice of man was not a good one. A man who is easy and fun does not make divisive truth claims, does not make moral judgments, and does not set up moral boundaries. He can’t be trusted to honor moral obligations. He can only be trusted to be “easy and fun”. But marriage is not for men who want an easy life, nor a fun life. Marry requires self-sacrificial service. She should not have chosen an “easy and fun” man to have children with. That would be like me choosing a Paris Hilton and expecting her to be frugal and homeschool our kids. It’s not going to happen. But many women these days are so clouded by “tall, dark hair, blue eyes” that they cannot connect what a man can do to what a man is supposed to do in a marriage. So long as he looks good, then he is good.

More:

After a month or so, our physical relationship began, but we did not rush things. It was a couple of years before he moved into my flat in Crawley, West Sussex, and I expected we’d eventually marry and have kids.

Looking back, I suppose I should have heeded the warning signals. When I broached the subject of children, he stalled. His stock reply was: ‘We’ll have them later.’

So although he was non-committal, I loved him and assumed that his paternal instinct would kick in as he grew older. But the years passed and I was not reassured.

She thinks that a man who agrees to recreational sex after a month and then agrees to cohabitation after two years is the kind of man who is capable of making a lifelong commitment to be faithful to her and to raise children. That strikes me as equivalent to saying that a man whose favorite movie is Top Gun would also make a good airline pilot.

More:

And then I reached 30. My friends were marrying; settling into comfortable domesticity, preparing for parenthood, and Anthony and I were still in this limbo.

[…]Then my best friend announced she was pregnant and the joy I felt for her was tainted by Anthony’s absence of commitment to the idea of having children with me. So we had another discussion — this time, it was a passionate one. ‘It’s a deal-breaker,’ I said. ‘Much as I love you, if you don’t want children we can’t carry on.’

But, again, he assured me that it would all happen. I just had to bide my time.

So I waited until Anthony was 30, an age when I felt he was old enough to settle down. We loved each other whole-heartedly; we’d bought two successive homes together and the understanding was implicit: my future was bound up in his.

[…]I wanted so much to believe he would warm to the idea, but Anthony equivocated. He still wasn’t ready, he protested.

[…]But then Anthony demonstrated just how strong his aversion to babies was. We were visiting a friend who’d recently given birth and, when her baby cried, Anthony made his excuses and went home.

‘I just can’t stand the sound of that crying,’ he said testily when I confronted him later. ‘If we had a baby, I’d have to move out for the first six weeks.’

It wasn’t a propitious sign, but eventually he seemed to soften.

‘If we’re going to have children, we’ll have to get married first,’ he said the next time I raised the subject, and for once I agreed absolutely. We should get married; by making a public commitment to stay together for the rest of our lives, we would be taking the first step towards establishing a secure home for our future babies.

[…]After six months as man and wife, there had been no mention from Anthony of children. So one day, as we walked home from town, I broached the subject again.

‘We can’t afford to have children,’ he responded sharply and, rather than discuss the topic further, he marched off ahead of me.

[…]This was not the life I had planned for myself: for the first time I started to feel anger towards Anthony. I felt he had forced this situation onto me.

The woman went on to have fatherless children using taxpayer-funded IVF.

What I find troubling about this story is that the first instinct of women – Christian women – and Christian pastors – is to blame men. Those rotten, no-good men. With their tallness, blue-eyes and dark hair! They are “easy and fun” one minute, and then the next minute they are… easy and fun. Yeah. Good-looking men who are easy and fun cannot be assumed to be good at marriage and parenting. They cannot be assumed to be good providers. They can’t be assumed to be good protectors. They can’t be assumed to be moral leaders. They can’t be assumed to be spiritual leaders. The faster that we learn to judge women who make poor decisions with men, the better it will be for children who need to 1) not be killed in the womb and 2) not grow up fatherless. The loving thing to do is to hold women accountable for making decisions about men with their eyes, instead of with their minds.

What causes women to become single mothers by choice? Are men to blame?

Dina sent me this revealing article from the UK Daily Mail. It answers the question “Where does fatherlessness come from?”.

Excerpt:

My marriage ended, without rancour or argument, 18 months after it had begun. There was no recrimination, just a realisation, as sharp as physical pain, that we would never — could never — agree on one fundamental point.

I wanted children; my husband Anthony did not. You may think we should have resolved this crucial issue long before we bought a house and vowed to spend the rest of our lives together, but love had a way of blinding us to the depth of our disagreement.

By “love” she means three things: 1) he was physically attractive, 2) she became sexually active with him after one month of meeting him, and 3) she moved in with him before he made a commitment to marriage and parenting. (As we shall see) As far as I can tell, she spent her late 20s to mid 30s with this guy – a guy she chose of her own free will. A guy who never indicated any interest in children, but who indicated plenty of interest in recreational sex.

More:

Today, I am 37 and a single mum to gorgeous three-month-old twin boys Charlie and William. They were conceived through IVF, using my eggs and sperm from an anonymous donor, and the love I feel for them is all-consuming.

[…]Anthony, a policeman, was easy and fun; we chatted comfortably together, and when we started dating I was impressed by his integrity. He had passionate views about fairness and loyalty. He was attractive, too — tall, dark hair, blue eyes — and I felt we could build a loving relationship together.

“Easy and fun” = no divisive truth claims, no moral judgments, no moral boundaries, no goals, no plans, no expectations, no obligations. Perfect! The modern feminist ideal.

More:

After a month or so, our physical relationship began, but we did not rush things. It was a couple of years before he moved into my flat in Crawley, West Sussex, and I expected we’d eventually marry and have kids.

Looking back, I suppose I should have heeded the warning signals. When I broached the subject of children, he stalled. His stock reply was: ‘We’ll have them later.’

So although he was non-committal, I loved him and assumed that his paternal instinct would kick in as he grew older. But the years passed and I was not reassured.

She thinks that a man who agrees to recreational sex after a month and then agrees to cohabitation after two years is the kind of man who is capable of making a lifelong commitment to be faithful to her and to raise children. That strikes me as equivalent to saying that a man whose favorite movie is Top Gun would also make a good airline pilot.

More:

And then I reached 30. My friends were marrying; settling into comfortable domesticity, preparing for parenthood, and Anthony and I were still in this limbo.

[…]Then my best friend announced she was pregnant and the joy I felt for her was tainted by Anthony’s absence of commitment to the idea of having children with me. So we had another discussion — this time, it was a passionate one. ‘It’s a deal-breaker,’ I said. ‘Much as I love you, if you don’t want children we can’t carry on.’

But, again, he assured me that it would all happen. I just had to bide my time.

So I waited until Anthony was 30, an age when I felt he was old enough to settle down. We loved each other whole-heartedly; we’d bought two successive homes together and the understanding was implicit: my future was bound up in his.

[…]I wanted so much to believe he would warm to the idea, but Anthony equivocated. He still wasn’t ready, he protested.

[…]But then Anthony demonstrated just how strong his aversion to babies was. We were visiting a friend who’d recently given birth and, when her baby cried, Anthony made his excuses and went home.

‘I just can’t stand the sound of that crying,’ he said testily when I confronted him later. ‘If we had a baby, I’d have to move out for the first six weeks.’

It wasn’t a propitious sign, but eventually he seemed to soften.

‘If we’re going to have children, we’ll have to get married first,’ he said the next time I raised the subject, and for once I agreed absolutely. We should get married; by making a public commitment to stay together for the rest of our lives, we would be taking the first step towards establishing a secure home for our future babies.

[…]After six months as man and wife, there had been no mention from Anthony of children. So one day, as we walked home from town, I broached the subject again.

‘We can’t afford to have children,’ he responded sharply and, rather than discuss the topic further, he marched off ahead of me.

[…]This was not the life I had planned for myself: for the first time I started to feel anger towards Anthony. I felt he had forced this situation onto me.

Have no fear, the government was there to give her taxpayer-funded IVF and single mother welfare payments, free day care, free public schools, and free health care. After all, none of this was her fault. It was all that beastly man’s fault. It’s nothing that can’t be solved by taking a little money from the other single men’s pockets, though. After all, if they have less money, that will make them even MORE likely to marry and conceive children. Anthony couldn’t afford to have children, so the solution to that is to tax all the other men so that they can’t afford to have children. Fatherless children impose enormous costs on society as well, most directly through increased crime. But who cares? As long as this woman gets what she wants, right?

And it goes on and on and on, with feminists completely ignorant about how they are causing their own messes with their support for wealth redistribution and their own irresponsible choices with men. He was attractive though. Very attractive. I’m sure her friends were all impressed and envious of her on the wedding day. After all, if a man has a square jaw and enjoys recreational sex, that is a clear sign he is ready for marriage and parenting. Right?

How feminist pastors like Mark Driscoll and Kevin DeYoung undermine marriage

Disclaimer: I agree with Mark Driscoll and probably KevinDeYoung on the vast majority (like 99%) of what they teach, and I applaud them for being conservative in their theology. This post is attacking them from the right – I don’t think that they are conservative ENOUGH. I disagree with all the people who attack pastors from the left. However, I do think that it is OK to attack them and expose them on the right. Mark Driscoll and Kevin DeYoung are liberal on some issues, because they are uninformed about men and marriage, and influenced by feminism. They need to be held to account. And I will do that now.

At Dalrock blog, I found an interesting assessment of a column by the famous feminist man-blamer Mark Driscoll. (H/T Fred, straightright)

Excerpt: (links removed)

Several readers have asked that I share my perspective on Pastor Mark Driscoll’s recentWashington Post piece “Why men need marriage”.  Driscoll opens his contribution to the man up and marry career gal sluts genre with an anecdote about a middle aged career woman who never married:

She was smart, funny, interesting, successful, attractive, kind, in her 40s, and still single.

A man of biblical wisdom would recognize that this woman had squandered her youth chasing a feminist dream of career and/or fornication.  Were he a wise man, a story starting this way would be a cautionary tale to young Christian women not to make the same mistakes this woman did. However Pastor Driscoll is steeped in the foolishness of our feminist culture and not biblical wisdom.  He finds no fault worth mentioning in this woman’s own choices, and instead looks for a man to blame for her terribly mismanaged life:

After my wife Grace and I spent some time with the woman from our church, we could not fathom why no one had married her.

She has been of marriageable age for over twenty years, yet she never married.  Pastor Driscoll seems to think this is because men have failed her.  It is far more likely that she followed the feminist advice to delay marriage until at least her 30s, while in all likelihood riding the carousel.  As a result she may well have lost the ability to experience love and attraction for a normal man.  Note that amongst the marriageable attributes he mentioned about this woman he left two out;  he didn’t say she was a virgin, and he overlooked entirely the fact that she is almost certainly no longer able to bear children.  In fact, notice that all of the attributes he lists are what one would normally advise a woman to look for in a husband (smart, funny, interesting, successful, attractive, kind).  He seems to have gone out of his way to cleanse his mind of traditional views of the sexes in marriage.  Why else would he refer to a woman using only terms which would apply to a man?

More: (links removed)

But Driscoll is apparently entirely unaware of the trends of the last 40 years.  Instead he coins a new euphemism for the carousel (fools parade) and ladles out a healthy serving of the Apex Fallacy.

Eventually, some get tired of the fools parade and settle for some guy who is more likely to act like a baby than help raise a baby. These guys make the worst husbands: gambling away the money, out late with the boys a lot, unfaithful, can’t seem to fit a full-time job in around his hobbies, and eventually trading in their 40-year-old wife for two 20-year-old girlfriends.

He sees women thinking with their genitals and seeking out men with dark triad traits and instead of holding them accountable for the devastation they cause their children he blames men in general.  Then he trots out the canard that men are driving the divorce epidemic by divorcing older wives when the data proves that divorce rates plummet as wives age.

He ignores the epidemic of women kicking fathers out of their children’s lives committing frivolous divorce and divorce theft and doesn’t warn men to be extremely careful when choosing a wife.  Like any other form of addict, he will do or say anything to get his next fix.

Men are like trucks: they drive straighter with a weighted load. Young men are supposed to load themselves up first by being responsible for themselves and not expecting their mom to fill up their sippy cup with beer and push them in a stroller to the unemployment line. Young men who take responsibility for themselves are then ready to marry and take responsibility for the life and joy of their wife.

But what about young women? Do these pastors think that women have “load themselves up” with anything that men might expect them to know? Should they have strong informed views favoring chastity, opposing divorce, and really really opposing fatherlessness? Of course not – because Mark Driscoll is afraid to tell women that there are things that they ought to be doing in order to be prepared for marriage. I have a whole list of things that women should be encouraged by pastors to load themselves up with, but none of those are on Mark Driscoll’s list.

Pastors don’t ask the right questions of women. They somehow have gotten the idea that Christianity only imposes obligations on men. It is so bad that Mark Driscoll actually blames the non-Christian men that “Christian” women choose have relationships with when they act like non-Christians! Pastors shouldn’t tell women that it’s not their fault if they choose bad men – it makes them think that they are victims and that they are not responsible for their  own decisions. That will not protect woman from making more bad decisions in the future. We don’t want women to get the idea that they don’t need to have informed views on these issues so that they will make better decisions.

Here’s Mark Driscoll explaining how men are to blame for single motherhood:

Part of it is the unintended consequences of divorce. Forty percent of kids go to bed at night without a father. Not to be disparaging toward single moms, but if you’re a single mom and you’re working 60 hours a week, and you’ve got a boy, and he’s home all by himself with no parents and no dad, he’s just going to be hanging out with his buddies, feeding himself pizza rolls.

The number one consumer of online pornography is 12- to 17-year-old boys. What that means is he’s home eating junk food, drinking Monster energy drinks, downloading porn, masturbating and screwing around with his friends. That really doesn’t prepare you for responsible adulthood. That’s a really sad picture, especially if you’re a single gal hoping to get married someday. You’re like: “Seriously, that’s the candidate pool? You’ve got to be kidding me.” That’s why 41 percent of births right now are to unmarried women. A lot of women have decided: “I’m never going to find a guy who is actually dependable and responsible to have a life with. So I’ll just get a career and have a baby and just intentionally be a single mother because there are no guys worth spending life with.”

Single motherhood is no problem for Mark Driscoll – which implies premarital sex. It’s all totally OK – for women. Because he thinks that men are to blame for the decisions that women freely make. But I think that the men that Driscoll is complaining about are produced by the conditions that he refuses to condemn – like premarital sex, which is a risk factor for divorce, and single motherhood. So, he is basically supporting fatherlessness, and then complaining about the results of the fatherlessness that he supported. In his rush to avoid condemning women, he creates the very situations that result in men who do not do well in school, do not work and do not marry. All because he doesn’t think that the Bible’s moral teachings apply to women – but only to men.

What men expect from women when we pursue them is that they will be passionate about identifying the causes of social phenomena like the decline of men , and then demonstrate to us what actions they have taken in order to defeat those trends. We expect women to talk about no-fault divorce, shared parenting, cohabitation, hook-ups, binge drinking, day care, single motherhood, gay marriage, school choice – to show men that they have some familiarity with the issues that they would face as mothers and wives. But when pastors respond to the real problems facing men with “man up” and women believe them and accept the view that they are not responsible for solving these problems, then we all lose. Women today are complaining that the sons of single mothers and divorced mothers from yesterday will not man up. But where did these single mothers and divorced mothers come from? Surely pastors who refused to confront women about the morality of premarital sex (which reduces the stability of the marriage, leading to divorce) and single motherhood by choice deserve some of the blame?

Men are getting 40% of the undergraduate degrees in many universities. Is it incumbent on pastors to read books like Christina Hoff Sommers’ “The War Against Boys” and find out the root causes of this effect? Is it incumbent on pastors to read books like Stephen Baskerville’s “Taken Into Custody” and find out another root cause of the marriage strike – no-fault divorce? Or should pastors just remain ignorant and lazy, and refuse to confront women with the causes of the decline of men? It seems to me that pastors like Kevin DeYoung and Mark Driscoll just dismiss these problems with the slogan “man up”, because they are just not intelligent enough to be able to read books by Christian scholars that explain the causes for the decline of men. It’s much easier to write blog posts bashing men, with no citations, and get accolades from the feminists in their churches, who are only too willing to blame men for problems that they themselves have caused by embracing anti-marriage, anti-family ideologies.

Pastors think that Bible doesn’t apply to women

Here’s my view:

  • Bellow “How Dare You!” to men who have premarital sex and have babies out of wedlock and get divorced.
  • Bellow “How Dare You!” to women who have premarital sex and have babies out of wedlock and get divorced.

Here’s Driscoll’s view:

  • Bellow “How Dare You!” to men who have premarital sex and have babies out of wedlock and get divorced.
  • Tell women that it’s not their fault if they fornicate and have babies out of wedlock and divorce because they are not happy, and then bellow at men to “Man Up” and marry women who think that the Bible doesn’t apply to them.

Many women who claim to be Christians are very sympathetic with the government handing out goodies to women who don’t care what the Bible says.

It seems to me that what pastors like Driscoll are saying is this:

  1. Women should not be told not to have babies out of wedlock
  2. Women should not be told not to have premarital sex, which often leads to divorce (marital instability)
  3. The poverty that results should be fixed by government redistribution of wealth

Where does government money come from for all of the social programs to deal with broken homes (112 millon per year)? It comes from men who work. We have to pay higher taxes to subsidize women who get into situations that are very expensive for working men to pay for. This in turn reduces out ability to afford to get married and have children.

And Mark Driscoll comes along and bellows at us “How Dare You Complain About High Taxes For Sin Subsidies! Man Up and Marry Those Sinners! Pay for their social programs!”

Here’s what one devout Calvinist Christian woman just wrote to me:

I know there are some men who start out being really nice and sweet and they get the woman crazy about them and then slowly, little bit by little bit they persuade her that if she “really loves them” she’ll sleep with them and they’re “going to marry” her and they “love her” and all that rot. And one night she gives in because she’s weak. But she doesn’t really want to. But she’s bad at resisting the man and he’s manipulative.

And he lied. He didn’t mean it. She did mean it. She believed him when he whispered sweet nothings in her ear.

Yeah, she’s not too bright to fall for the liar. Yeah, she should be vigilant. Yeah, she should think logically instead of emotionally.

But often she’s younger than he is and she falls for his good acting. It’s Little Red Riding Hood and the Wolf.

Between her and the liar, I’m with Driscoll.

See? The Bible doesn’t apply to women. It only applies to men. That’s what pastors have been telling women and this is what creates an entire generation of fatherless children, who the pastors then bellow at to “man up”. If the pastors had been man enough to challenge women with the Bible in the first place, we wouldn’t be in this mess. They caused this by refusing to believe what the Bible says.

Making men better without nagging

I sometimes wonder if pastors think that men are just there to serve women, and not to serve God. Pastors seem to have no idea where men are really needed in this society – to counter anti-Christian ideologies – and how to get them there. Pastors are supposed to inspire and encourage Christian men to become effective and influential in the areas where we need them to be, and to inspire women to select those men who are having an influence over non-Christian men who are just good looking and fun. But they fail miserably at these tasks. The don’t seem to be able to look at an effect (declining men) and trace it back to causes, and then address those causes.

 Here are a few things that pastors could talk about in the church:
  • how should schools change to help men to learn better?
  • what sort of education policies will help parents educate their boys?
  • what sort of books should boys be reading?
  • what should parents be doing to make their
  • what should a single man be doing to please God – not women?
  • what economic policies encourage job creation?
  • how does socialism (social programs) minimize the roles that men play in a family?
  • how do we make church more interesting for men?
  • how has feminism changed law and government to be more hostile to men?
  • how has feminism changed the workplace to be less accessible to men?
  • how can we convince women to stop getting drunk and hooking up?
  • how can we get men to be able to understand the truth of Christianity?
  • how can we get women to affirm men in their traditional roles?
  • how can we point men towards careers in science, engineering, math and technology?
  • how does the culture undermine strong Christian men?
  • what are some areas where Christians are needed to be influential today?
  • who are some of Christian men who are effective and influential?
  • what academic disciplines should men focus on in order to have an influence?
  • what laws and policies are hostile to the Christian life plan?
  • how can we get men to speak intelligently about Christianity and how it relates to other areas of knowledge?
But questions like this never occur to most pastors. They often can’t even talk  about things like apologetics and politics for fear of being “divisive”. Instead of complaining about men, pastors need to start thinking about how to solve the problem. That will involve deliberate study and taking action to address the root causes of the decline of men, providing men with a positive vision instead of just nagging them, and holding women accountable for their own sinful actions, like premarital sex (a risk factor for divorce) and single motherhood, which both cause their children to be raised without fathers.

Related posts

Kevin DeYoung: where do jobs come from?

From Kevin DeYoung, posted at the Gospel Coalition. This is a must-read. (H/T Mary)

He lays out the general case for why employers hire workers in four points.

Here is point #2:

(2)The employer must believe that spending his money on new employees will be good for his business. We may wish that employers hired people just cuz. But that’s not the way the world works. When employers want to be charitable they give to church or to their alma mater. But with their business they know they need to make money. Consequently, they hire new workers only when they believe that paying more people will eventually be offset by making more money.

Ah, this is nice. And it goes on and on like that. Click here and read this sweet, sweet post!

This is Mr. Moo. He is a businesscow. He's going to work.
This is Mr. Moo. He is a capitalist business owner.

But I have to steal this story about a capitalist cow who starts a business:

Mr. Moo sells milk. He charges $5 a gallon. Everyone in town wants milk so everyone pays Mr. Moo $5 a gallon. But Mr. Moo wants to make even more money. Maybe he’s greedy. Maybe he wants to give more to his church. Maybe he wants to buy a new car. Maybe he just had a new baby that needs food and clothes. Maybe he wants to bet on horses. No matter the reason, Mr. Moo (like almost everyone) wants to make more money. What should he do?

He could charge more for his milk, but he realizes that at $6 a gallon some of his customers will drive to the next town where milk is only $4.75. So instead he tries to lower his costs. He needs $4 to make a gallon of milk, but he’d like to do better. So next month he replaces his milkmaids with new milking machines. This requires a substantial up front investment, but within a year the milking machines have paid for themselves. Without having to pay milkmaids, his milk only costs $3 to produce. Now he charges $4.25—a savings to his customers and more profit for him.

This simple example shows how productivity fuels profits. Mr. Moo found a way to make the same thing for less money.

But, you ask, how is this good for anyone but Mr. Moo? Well, as the other farmers purchased their milking machines their costs went down too. So they started to lower prices, hoping to attract more customers. Mr. Moo did the same. Even if he is now getting richer, his customers are too. They save 75 cents on every gallon of milk (paying $4.25 when they used to pay $5.00). Now they have the same milk as before but more money. The economy has expanded.

And that’s not all, with more money in his pocket Mr. Moo goes out to eat more, which helps the local burger joint hire one more cook. And all the new machines need servicing, so the local repairmen hires an apprentice. The grocer spends less on milk so he can add another bagger. The doctor, who is saving money on dairy, has more money to spend so he donates to the local art museum which can afford to purchase two new paintings from an aspiring artist. No one knew Mr. Moo’s machines would help so many people and create so many jobs. No one really notices either, but it happens.

But what about the poor milkmaids? True, they are out of work. Their lives, at least in the short run, are worse because of the new innovation. Those dreaded milking machines seemed to have ruined everything. In fact, the mayor almost outlawed them. Others wanted to institute a new milking machine tariff to discourage farmers from buying them and to help save milkmaid jobs. But none of this happened. Instead farmers kept buying milking machines and milkmaids kept losing their jobs. Which was really hard on the milkmaids and their families.

And yet, that’s not the end of the story. Some of the milkmaids went to work for Mr. Pump who manufactures milking machines. His business was booming. He needed more workers to help make more machines. So he hired a few milkmaids. And remember, as the price of milk dropped, so did the price of cheese and pizza and yogurt. Everyone’s grocery bill was less. The whole town had the same stuff but more money. So Mr. Wall and Mr Mart decided to open a new thrift store. Mrs. Lovejoy, who started watching busy Mr. Wall’s and Mr. Mart’s kids during the day, decided to open a daycare. She hired some former milkmaids to help, as did Mr. Wall and Mr. Mart. A few of the married milkmaids decided they didn’t have to work anymore because groceries were cheaper than they used to be and the family could get by on less. It was hard and humiliating to lose their jobs, but five years later the whole town is better off because Mr. Moo bought his milking machines. There are more jobs. Families are able to purchase more things. And there is more ice cream for everyone.

Yes, I know cows are girls. Shut up!

I love it when conservative pastors step into areas outside of theology and knit together a full Christian worldview spanning patches from all areas of life. It’s especially good when they use evidence from the sciences, economics and history.

I find it alarming that the best people who do this are all Calvinists, though. Mark Driscoll, Wayne Grudem and Kevin DeYoung. Grrrr. Oh well. The bottom line is that we need pastors like this to be encouraging us to know how the world works, so that we can think about how we can read our Bibles and achieve the results that were are supposed to be achieving intelligently, instead of being tossed to and fro by our emotions, intuitions and intentions. (For example, what do you think lowers unemployment for the poor, young, minority workers? Raising the minimum wage, or lowering it? Click here to see why it is important to understand economics in order to help the poor with real results, instead of just feeling good while you hurt the poor)

If people who read these practical theologians could send me practical posts that they write where they encounter evidence from the real world, I can post them. I don’t know of many famous non-Calvinist theologians who I respect on economics and politics. I like Jay Richards, but he’s Catholic.

Click here for more on Christianity and economics from Dr. Ron Nash and Dr. Jay Richards and Dr. Wayne Grudem.