Twenty Ways to Answer A Fool [14]

Is Christianity Misogynistic?

I continue once again examining the arguments of blues guitar playing, anti-Christian, Chaz Bufe, written in his self-published work, 20 Reasons to Abandon Christianity.

In his 16th point, Chaz claims Christianity is misogynistic. “Misogynistic” is a fancy word meaning “woman hater.” This particular entry is a bit long, so I refer the reader here to read it in its entirety.

Chaz writes in his opening sentence, “Misogyny is fundamental to the basic writings of Christianity.” Really? Woman hating is the one thing that permeates all the writings of Christianity?  I always get a laugh from the person who hates my faith and insists he or she would have nothing to do with such nonsense, but then pretends to be enough of an expert to educate me on what I’m supposed to believe.

Any person who genuinely thinks misogyny is fundamental to Christianity is either,

a) cherry-picking selective citations from the Bible without any thought of context within a Christian worldview or,

b) has a limited view of world history and,

c) certainly has not traveled anywhere beyond the immediate borders of his or her hometown, let alone anywhere in the world.

I would venture a wild guess and say all of those apply to Chaz, at least the first two.

In order to “prove” his thesis, Chaz moves on to quote, out-of-context of course, Paul’s words to wives in Ephesians 5, a few OT passages that speak to the “uncleanness” of women, and then lists other similar passages from the Bible like 1 Timothy 2:11,12, and 1 Corinthians 11:3. Chaz insists those passages and other like them are responsible for the oppression of women throughout the history of the world down to our current day where women are not allowed to pastor churches. He also presents some citations from the sermons of church fathers like Tertullian, who allegedly railed against the disobedience of Eve in the garden of Eden. Those sermons, insists Chaz, are  filled with venomous misogyny.

One amusing part of Chaz’s point is how he buys into the inflated number of “millions” of witches burned during the Inquisition and the myth about the English common law allowing husbands to beat their wives.

First, regarding the witch burnings. Chaz leveled those bogus charges under a previous point in which he accused Christianity of cruelty. As I noted when I answered him then, the number of young women burned at the stake is highly exaggerated, more like in the tens of thousands rather than millions, and that is over a course of 300 plus years. Additionally, it was the so-called “superstitious” church who put a stop to much of the witch burning, not “intellectual” anarchist atheists, as Chaz would have us believe.

Moving to the charge about English law allowing husbands to beat their wives is also another urban legend created by feminist. Sort of like the claim more women are abused on Super Bowl Sunday than any other day. Christiana Hoff Sommers has done a fine job of debunking the “rule of thumb” myth in her book Who Stole Feminism?, and showing how it is the invention of fevered feministic anti-traditionalism. Read the section here.

Certainly there have been individual cases in history past where judges favored an abusive husband over his wife, but the true “rule of thumb” among law courts both in England and America was to punish abusive husbands who battered their wives. That protection of women is a product of Christianity elevating the place of women in God’s kingdom, and it has been Christians who have advocated against domestic violence toward women.

But the chuckle inducing part of Chaz’s point is his conclusion listing a group of women instrumental in the establishment of feminist ideology. Two are worth noting.

First is Mary Wollstonecraft who was an 18th century atheistic feminist. She is lauded as a pioneering intellectual of feminism who advocated for educational opportunities for women and other equal rights in her writings. As enlightened as she supposedly was, however, her choice of men for her relationships displays the mentality of a Hollywood bimbo. She had affairs with two notorious misogynists, one with artist Henry Fuseli, an emotionally troubled painter who had severe hang-ups and hatred toward women, and Gilbert Imlay who got her pregnant and then left her for another affair with an actress. Her daughter, Mary, who wrote the Frankenstein novel, didn’t fair too well with men either. She married the womanizing Percy Shelley who left his pregnant wife to marry her and who eventually left her as well. Those may be women liberated from the “tyranny” of traditional Christianity, but they only trade it for the piggish behavior of narcissistic, chauvinists atheists.

Then Chaz lists Margaret Sanger. He even quotes favorably one her key slogans of life, “no God, no master,” and says it is still relevant today. That is a frightening thought, because Sanger was a pro-eugenics racist who promoted birth-control for the purposes of maintaining a fit nation free of unevolved ethnic groups who would hold our society back. Chaz may want to read his previous point where he accused Christianity of racism, but I digress.

At any rate, Sanger created the American Birth Control League, what was to become Planned Parenthood, for the purposes of creating her vision of a fit nation freed from undesirables. Her group specifically targeted low-income ethnic and minority neighborhoods because the people there were considered more feeble-minded than the rest of our society.

In reality, it is Chaz’s view of liberated women that is a disgusting form of selfish sexism. That is typical of anti-Christian intellectuals through out history. Chaz is for sure a supporter of Darwinianism, but Charles Darwin himself was a sexist. Writing in his second major book of biological evolution, Descent of Man, he presented women as being less evolved than men and the reason why they need to stay home under their protection. Many of his immediate supporters also held to the notion that men were more evolved than women.

hatThat attitude continues even to this day. Over the last few years, ideological and personal fissures have formed among atheist/skeptical groups because of the latent sexism existing among them. The alleged sexism is particularly on public display at their various, yearly conventions. On the one hand are humorless, man-hating femi-Nazi types who break out into sobbing fits or faux outrage when a Comic Con nerd atheist works up the liquid courage to ask one of them to have cocktails with him after a session to discuss continuity inconsistencies within the Dragon Riders of Pern series.

On the other, there have been serious allegations raised of sexual assault by well-known, celebrity atheists, and those crimes being ignored or covered up by the old white-male atheist club. See also HERE HERE and HERE.

In all honesty, Chaz’s concern for the rights of women in Christianity is phony. Sure Chaz decries the mistreatment of women by the hands of Christian officials over the centuries, pointing out how they have been oppressed and are not allowed to participate in church leadership and are basically told by the Bible to stay in the kitchen barefoot and pregnant. But it is all a ruse to cover up his true motive which is to have free, limitless sex with any girl of any age with impunity.

You see, biblical theology, as taught throughout the entire length of Scripture, has a profound respect for women. That profound respect is demonstrated in the fact the scriptural ethics do not allow men to use women as sexual chattel. Are there examples of men abusing women in the Bible? Sure. Is that an operating moral principle taught in the Bible for a Christian worldview? No.

One truly important illustration of genuine love and respect for women means a man does not use women solely for his own sexual gratification. A biblical morality teaches men are to take responsibility for the women they involve themselves with sexually including committing to them in marriage first, and taking care of the children who will be the product of that sexual marriage.

Chaz, on the other hand, promotes a playboy mentality under the guise of helping to liberate women that doesn’t want the hassle of the responsibility stuff. Thus, in his mind, women “set free” from the stifling life as a Christian and cut loose from the shackles of traditional Christian morality, can assuage his guilt for using them, because they don’t have those annoying, sexual mores in tow.

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57 thoughts on “Twenty Ways to Answer A Fool [14]

  1. Yes, Fred. I’ve been reading the Bible, studying it prayerfully and carefully, alone and with others, for nearly 50 years. There’s nothing in the Bible I have not read. Multiple times. How long have you been reading the Bible, Fred? Should I presume that you haven’t read parts of it? Should I write off your irrationality and emotional responses when it comes to these questions as simple spiritual immaturity and unawareness on your part?

    Or how about, instead of that – instead of fallacious ad hom innuendo – we just deal with the questions raised, respectfully and rationally?

    What difference does Paul’s treatment of Onesimus have to do with the question: Is slavery immoral?

    I think it’s because you are coming from the “if there’s a line defending it in the Bible, it’s not immoral, because the Bible is a Rule Book” school of thought, but you tell me.

    In Christ,

    ~Dan

  2. What difference does Paul’s treatment of Onesimus have to do with the question: Is slavery immoral?

    I didn’t ask you if you read it. I asked you are you familiar with the letter? What did Paul write to Philemon about Onesimus, his runaway slave? What is God revealing to us in that letter? Paul’s treatment of Onesimus, the runaway slave he was returning to his owner, Philemon, has a lot to do with the question of whether or not slavery is immoral, because if slavery is as immoral as you insist, then Paul, an inspired apostle of the Lord Jesus Christ, acted immorally, according to your standard of what is immoral, by sending him back to his circumstances.

    So. Either you are wrong about your view of immorality or Paul is. I side with Paul in this case.

  3. Fred…

    Philemon, has a lot to do with the question of whether or not slavery is immoral, because if slavery is as immoral as you insist, then Paul, an inspired apostle of the Lord Jesus Christ, acted immorally

    IF you are suggesting that, because of Paul’s actions 2000 years ago, we can “know” slavery is morally okay, THEN you are making an irrational and immoral jump of logic.

    Are you familiar with 2 Samuel 12? God literally GAVE David his many wives, in that story. So, either you are wrong about your view of immorality about polygamy or God is.

    Is polygamy immoral, Fred? If so, on what basis?

    Will you answer this question: IF a slave comes to your door begging for help escaping from her “owner,” would you counsel her to return to her owner? DO YOU THINK SLAVERY IS IMMORAL, in and of itself?

    Your answer appears to be No, slavery is not always immoral, it depends… but you tell me.

    IF you are defending slavery in some circumstances, if you are defending forced marriages and killing children in some circumstances, do you recognize what a blow to your moral and rational credibility that is?

    Dan

  4. Fred…

    Philemon, has a lot to do with the question of whether or not slavery is immoral, because if slavery is as immoral as you insist, then Paul, an inspired apostle of the Lord Jesus Christ, acted immorally

    No, Philemon does NOT have a lot to do with the question of whether or not slavery is immoral, UNLESS you are treating the Bible as a rule/rulings book, wherein we can lift rules given to ancient peoples and say, “By this rule, we know that slavery is moral, not immoral.”

    But that is not how we know if something is moral or not. We CAN tell if something was moral or not to the people in those times and contexts, but that does not mean we must accept slavery or forced marriage or polygamy or killing the children of our enemies as moral.

    God forbid we’d engage in that sort of diabolical moral relativism!

    Respectfully (to you, but not so much to your apparent opinions),

    Dan

  5. Dan – part of the problem here is in me you are dealing with an authentic, dry British sense of humour!

    I don’t think you will find any misogyny in anything I have written here. Stating what I am for gives you a pretty good idea of what I am against. So, to give a different example, if you ask me whether Jesus condemned homosexuality, yes or no, I would answer he defined both what marriage is, and always has been, and what immorality is. In quoting him on this, I am answering your question, though not perhaps using the wording you might like.

    I see no moral obligation to answer your questions in terms of self-determination.

    You do seem a bit inconsistant on the bible and slavery. You don’t like Fred or myself regarding it as a book of rules, but you them complain that is doesn’t outright condemn slavery, which may in any event have been ‘acceptable’ in the past given the culture of the ancients. You can’t really have it both ways. If the morality of slavery can change on account of culture, why should the bible set out a once for all law or ‘rule’ on the matter?

    In fact in making enslavement a capital offence for the Israelites, I think you have a very clear answer as to what God thinks of this human institution, and I think Fred and myself would agree on this rule or legal precept, and that the principle it is based on and enshrines applies for all time.

    Nevertheless, we are not under the law of Moses, and your complaints about it relate to a period that ended two millenia ago. These complaints it seems to me are not always very accurate, inasmuch as the bible describes the falling away of man and his society from the conditions at the beginning. These descriptions to not entail endorsement of such behaviour, for example polygamy, and are certainly not prescriptions for us to follow.

    Jesus and the NT often reimpose what God intended from the beginning. You really do need to take this into account.

    If God did legislate in the OT to outlaw slavery altogether for everyone, believer or not, how much human self-determination would you like to see overruled to enforce this law?

  6. Ken…

    I see no moral obligation to answer your questions in terms of self-determination.

    Moral obligation? Absolutely not. But then, you can’t really complain if people don’t understand your position.

    IF you want to be understood, then, you have a rational obligation to explain yourself and answer questions when asked.

    Agreed?

    If you don’t care if you’re understood or not – if you make a valid rational point or not, well then, why bother commenting?

    Ken…

    You do seem a bit inconsistant on the bible and slavery. You don’t like Fred or myself regarding it as a book of rules, but you them complain that is doesn’t outright condemn slavery

    If you all treat the Bible as a book of modern rules, I merely note that I disagree with that use of the Bible as being rationally inconsistent, unbiblical and potentially very immoral, especially if it leads you to “not believe in” the idea of personal liberty.

    I have not, however, in fact, “complained” that the Bible does not condemn slavery. I’ve merely noted that it does not condemn slavery for the people back then, nor has it condemned forced marriage, polygamy or killing children in wartime. Not directly, not when you take many of the OT texts as literally factual history.

    Over all, however, with the themes of liberty of conscience and personal responsibility, themes of being just and loving our neighbors, I DO think the Bible is thematically opposed to all of these ideas.

    I think the bible is more rightly understood as a book of wisdom, as a book of truths, where we can – by looking at the stories and teachings of ancient peoples – glean ideals of Truth, love of humanity and God, individual liberty, end to oppression, etc, etc. as moral ideals. As soon as we start moving from ideals that are overarching from civilization to civilization, to lifting direct rules for specific times and people, we’ve moved AWAY from those ideals.

    In my opinion. Hopefully, that clarifies for you my position and helps you see that I’m not complaining about “the Bible” “failing” to condemn practices specific to ancient peoples that we gladly and easily see as immoral today. I’m not. I’m disagreeing with those who would try to lift ancient rules specifically given to ancient peoples and say, “See? Here’s how we know that it’s morally acceptable to sell our children, or force women into marriage, or engage in slavery…” because that is a wrong-headed use of the bible, in my opinion, as well as a bad way to think about moral behavior.

    Ken…

    If the morality of slavery can change on account of culture, why should the bible set out a once for all law or ‘rule’ on the matter?

    I haven’t said that it should.

    Ken, do you think that owning a person is immoral? IF an escaped slave made her way to your house and asked for help getting away from her captor/”owner,” would you take Paul’s lead and counsel her to return to her “master” or would you agree with me that such behavior is monstrously evil? Regardless of what Paul may have counseled a slave to do 2,000 years ago?

    Ken…

    If God did legislate in the OT to outlaw slavery altogether for everyone, believer or not, how much human self-determination would you like to see overruled to enforce this law?

    1. I don’t know what you mean by this question.

    2. If you see no moral obligation to answer questions about your position, then I guess I feel no moral obligation to answer a question that I don’t understand. Fair enough?

    Oh, screw it. I think what you’re asking is, would I “squelch” self-determination for those who’d like to own slaves, is that it? If so, I think you are entirely missing my point.

    We all have the right to be self-determining, but only so far as our own selves are concerned. We do not have the “liberty” to be “self-determining” when it conflicts with someone else’s right to be self-determining. That is, the classic: Your right to swing your fist ends at my nose.

    Exactly because it is immoral and wrong to take away someone else’s right to be self-determining, we can and should not allow others to do so. And that, not because there is a line in the bible telling us to do so, but because it is just self-evidently morally right.

    So, don’t answer any questions you don’t want to, it doesn’t matter to me. All I’m saying is that I’m extremely curious at this reality that I’ve found mainly amongst conservative Christian bloggers (and, to a lesser degree, conservatives in person, but not nearly as often) who will gladly present their positions that make it sound as if they are opposed to morality, they are opposed to liberty, they are opposed to grace, they are misogynistic and irrational, and then not want to clarify when asked reasonable questions seeking clarification.

    Why would you all not clarify? I don’t mind that you don’t, but it’s baffling to me why you wouldn’t.

    Ah well, live and let live. Just don’t expect me to go along with what I find to be unbiblical, irrational and immoral.

    Respectfully,

    Dan

  7. Pingback: Articles on Apologetics and Evangelism | hipandthigh

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