“Monogamy is not natural. You’re right about that.
“It’s above our nature. It might not be realistic. Space flight isn’t realistic, either. If I wanted to be natural, I could live in a hole like a rodent, eat insects, and scamper from one mate to the next, until, after a life of nothingness, I die alone in the cold darkness, decomposing into the dirt without anyone ever noticing. That would be natural. It’s probably pretty realistic, too. So it is fortunate that I am a human being and I am given the chance to transcend the existence of a rat or a lizard. I have the opportunity to experience supernatural things like love, and sacrifice, and commitment.
“You say that men are especially ill-suited for monogamy. We are not “biologically fitted” for it. What does that mean, Professor? Do you go about your day and, before deciding on any particular course of action, ask yourself if it is something you are “biologically fitted” to do? I would say we are biologically fitted to be rational beings. And, as rational beings, we are capable of attaining higher things. Monogamy and loyalty are higher things. But are they more difficult for men? I can’t fathom why that should be the case.
“I have found a woman who will be with me until I die, even while my hair falls out and my skin shrivels and wrinkles, even when I stumble, even when I fail, even through the doldrums of daily existence, through bills and dirty diapers, through all things — joyous or miserable, pleasing or painful — through every day until death comes. Why should it be hard for me to simply refrain from tossing such a gift into the garbage?
“It’s hard for men to be monogamous? What a cowardly, pitiful statement. Also, how incredibly obtuse. It ought to be easy for us. Especially for us.
“If you won 600 million dollars in the lottery, would you go out the next day and break into cars to steal the change from the cup holders? That’s what sleeping around is like when you’ve already found a woman who will pledge her life and her entire being to you for the remainder of her existence.
“You tell me that you are in an “open marriage.” I will probably be lambasted for “judging” you for it, but, sorry Professor, an “open marriage” makes about as much sense as a plane without wings or a boat that doesn’t float. Marriages, by definition, are supposed to be closed. Actually, I’m getting rather tired of people like you trying to hijack the institution, strip it of its beauty and purpose, and convert it into some shallow little thing that suits your vices.
“If you aren’t strong enough to stay committed to one person, that’s your business. Walk down that path of loneliness and confusion, but you can’t drag the entire institution of marriage along with you. Personally, I like circles but I hate squares. Can I subvert the laws of geometry and suddenly decide that all squares shall henceforth be circles? No, because geometry is geometry, despite my strange square-hating quirks. Similarly, marriage is marriage, no matter how many college professors insist otherwise.”
(Matt Walsh, “Monagamy is unnatural”, The Matt Walsh Blog)
1. “Ohio gay marriage ban is rejected in narrow ruling” – Gay marriage ban in Ohio is struck down by Federal judge. (Associated Press)
“A federal judge Monday ordered Ohio authorities to recognize gay marriages on death certificates, saying the state’s ban on such unions is unconstitutional and that states cannot discriminate against same-sex couples simply because some voters don’t like homosexuality. Although Judge Timothy Black’s ruling applies only to death certificates, his statements about Ohio’s gay-marriage ban are sweeping, unequivocal, and are expected to incite further litigation challenging the law. Ohio’s attorney general said the state will appeal.” (Associated Press)
2. “Brenda Schmitz’s Christmas Wish” – Radio station grants Christmas wish to mother who died from ovarian cancer for her surviving husband and his new wife.
3. “And Them That Mourn”—Celebrating Christmas in the Face of Grief and Sorrow” Reposted 2011 article by Al Mohler on facing grief and sorrow- (AlbertMohler.com)
4. My Two Big Mistakes When Meeting Francis Schaeffer – Jim Eliff recalls two big mistakes he made when meeting Francis Schaeffer on Christmas. (Christian Communications Worldwide)
5. “Beth Moore Worships at Joel Osteen’s Church as Pastrix Christine Caine Preaches” – Ken Silva reports on Beth Moore worshipping at Joel Osteen’s church while female pastor, Christine Caine, is preaching. (Apprising Ministries)
1. “Labour: We must ‘do God’ to fight anti-Christian persecution” (Telegraph U.K.)
“The Labour Party has admitted that politicians should stop feeling a “sense of embarrassment” about discussing God. Douglas Alexander, a senior frontbencher, suggested that public figures have allowed “political correctness” to prevent them talking about faith and the persecution of Christians in the Middle East. In a thinly-veiled attack on the Tony Blair era, when Alastair Campbell, the then communications director in Downing Street, said “we don’t do God”, Mr Alexander warned that people should have the courage to speak up for Christians without fear of causing offence. Mr Alexander, the shadow foreign secretary, spoke out to voice his concerns about growing harassment and attacks suffered by Christians in the Middle East. Writing in the Telegraph, he warns that the mounting persecution of Christians is a “story that goes largely untold”, describing those who have spoken out on the issue, including the Prince of Wales, as lone voices.” – Edward Malnick, Telegraph U.K.
2. “Lesbian United Methodist Ministers ‘Wed’ in Seattle Despite Possible Church Discipline” – Lesbian United Metodist Ministers wed despite the threat of church discipline. (Christian News)
“Two United Methodist ministers recently ‘wed’ each other in a ceremony in Seattle, Washington despite the possibility that they could face disciplinary action for violating Church law. Joanne Carlson Brown, 60, of Tibbetts United Methodist Church and Christie Newbill, 65, of Woodland Park United Methodist Church tied the knot at a ceremony at Brown’s church on December 7th. District Superintendent Patricia Simpson officiated the ceremony, which was attended by approximately 300 supporters.” – Heather Clark, Christian News Network
3. “The university professor who stood up against dumbing down of degrees” – 2010 Telegraph U.K. article on university professor Paul Buckland’s stand against the dumbing down of degrees. (Telegraph U.K.)
“When Professor Paul Buckland settled down in his garden one summer’s evening to mark exam papers from his second-year archaeology students, he was expecting the usual range of responses. But it soon became clear that the scripts had plummeted to new depths of ignorance. In one paper, the decline of elm trees was attributed to diseases passed on by dogs. Next, a student explained that the volcanic eruption in Pompeii had “changed the pattern of human evolution”. By the time he read that farming caused smaller jaws in humans, his head was practically in his hands. The professor failed 18 out of the 60 papers he marked. And that was where his problems began. . . ” – Julie Henry, Telegraph U.K.
4. “5 Things Christians Should Stop Saying” – Jason Johnson gives five things Christians should stop saying. (Jason Johnson Blog)
5. “Latest Societal Trend Exemplifies Continued Breakdown of Family Structure” – Report on co-parenting the latest trend in modern day parenting. (Christian News)
“Normally, co-parent hopefuls browse online databases, looking for another person who would match their interests and personalities. Overall, the premise behind co-parenting is that parenthood does not have to be based on love and commitment, but can instead be founded upon a contract where both parents share child-rearing responsibilities. “All a child needs to develop and grow is attention, encouragement and love,” says Ivan Fatovic, founder of one of today’s most popular co-parenting sites. “A modern family unit can provide that as well a traditional one. We’re all looking for healthy, happy, and balanced children.” “Growing divorce rates combined with people waiting increasingly longer to get married and have children are leading indicators pointing towards a society where co-parenting has the potential to be much more prevalent,” he added. Earlier this month, ABC News highlighted the story of Rachel Hope of Los Angeles. Hope has two children, ages 22 and 4, who were both raised with different fathers. Now, Hope is searching for yet another man to serve as a co-parent.” – Garrett Haley
YouTube interview with co-parenting advocate Rachel Hope (Sunrise):
“But the lack of self-awareness in this criticism is staggering. These are shepherds who feed only themselves (Ezek. 34:2). When shepherds have neglected the flock for so long, and the wolves are ravaging them, and the sheep come up with some kind of strategy to defend themselves, and the shepherds sit up on the ridge, laughing at the tactical inadequacy of what the sheep are attempting, what shall we call that?
“So what do we need? We don’t need generals. We have that. We need generals who fight. We don’t need leadership councils. We have those. We need national leaders who fight. We don’t need pretty boy preachers. We have those. We need preachers who fight. We don’t need evangelical regiments of pajamaboys. We have that. We need fight, and we need to fight with everything we have — heart, strength, and brains. All in.
“Show me your forearms. Unless there are scars all over them, then I honestly don’t want to hear your views of the inadequacy of these cultural clashes (Gal. 6:17). When the barbarians are throwing their scaling ladders against the city walls, if the only defenders at the top of those walls are Chick Fil A employees in paper hats and hot grease from the deep fryer, and rednecks with their beards and shotguns, and nobody at all there from Red Brick Memorial Reformed, Rev. Forsythe P. Snodgrass, D.Min, minister, then let us be frank. We shouldn’t blame the folks who are there.
“His watchmen are blind: they are all ignorant, they are all dumb dogs, they cannot bark; sleeping, lying down, loving to slumber” (Is. 56:10).
(Doug Wilson on the Phil Robertson controvery, “The Scars on Your Forearms”, Blog and Mablog)
1. “Judge strikes down Utah’s same-sex marriage ban” – Federal judge strikes down Utah’s 2004 law banning same sex marriage. (Politico)
“A federal judge struck down Utah’s same-sex marriage ban Friday in a decision that brings a nationwide shift toward allowing gay marriage to a conservative state where the Mormon church has long been against it. U.S. District Judge Robert J. Shelby issued a 53-page ruling Friday saying Utah’s law passed by voters in 2004 violates gay and lesbian couples’ rights to due process and equal protection under the 14th Amendment. Shelby said the state failed to show that allowing same-sex marriages would affect opposite-sex marriages in any way. “In the absence of such evidence, the State’s unsupported fears and speculations are insufficient to justify the State’s refusal to dignify the family relationships of its gay and lesbian citizens,” Shelby wrote.” – The Associated Press
2. “7 Ways Social Media Makes Pastoring More Difficult” – Mike Leake gives us seven ways social media can make pastoring more difficult. (Servants of Grace)
3. “What’s Really Going On?” – H.B. Charles recalls how he trusted God during a church fight. (H.B. Charles Jr.)
“Seeing that article again recently reminded me that if you just stay on assignment, the Lord will raise up people to fight for you. The odds may be against you. And it may seem that no one is on your side. But the Lord will send you friends just when you need it. Many times the most unlikely person will be a postcard from heaven by which God announces that he has not forgotten about you. What challenge are you facing? Stay on mission. Be faithful. Trust God. Love people. And don’t take matters into your own hands. The Lord can and will help you through the challenge, even if he shows up through a sister with a typewriter and a story to tell about what’s really going on!” – H.B. Charles Jr.
4. “Is Christmas a Pagan Holiday?” – R.C. Sproul on why Christmas is not a pagan holiday. (Ligonier Ministries)
“I can’t think of anything more pleasing to Christ than the church celebrating his birthday every year. Keep in mind that the whole principle of annual festival and celebration is deeply rooted in ancient Jewish tradition. In the Old Testament, for example, there were times when God emphatically commanded the people to remember certain events with annual celebrations. While the New Testament doesn’t require that we celebrate Christmas every year, I certainly see nothing wrong with the church’s entering into this joyous time of celebrating the Incarnation, which is the dividing point of all human history. Originally, it was intended to honor, not Mithras or any of the other mystery religion cults, but the birth of our King.” – R.C. Sproul
1. “An Open Letter from the widow of Ronnie Smith to the Libyan People” – Libyan martyr’s wife, Anita Smith, writes an open letter to the Libyan people. (RonnieSmithLibya.com)
“To his attackers: I love you and I forgive you. How could I not? For Jesus taught us to “Love our enemies” – not to kill them or seek revenge. Jesus sacrificed His life out of love for the very people who killed him, as well as for us today. His death and resurrection opened the door for us to walk on the straight path to God in peace and forgiveness. Because of what Jesus did, Ronnie is with Jesus in paradise now. Jesus did not come only to take us to paradise when we die, but also to bring peace and healing on this earth. Ronnie loved you because God loves you. Ronnie loved you because God loved him – not because Ronnie was so great, but because God is so great.” – Anita Smith
The Guardian U.K.’s report on Ronnie Smith: “American teacher Ronnie Smith shot dead while jogging in Benghazi”
The following video is the report from CBS News on the Ronnie Smith murder:
Austin church honors the life of slain teacher in Benghazi (YouTube):
CBS Morning News interview with Anita Smith (YouTube):
2. “The Myths of Divorce” – Ken Sande posts some myths Christians have told him who are contemplating divorce. (PeaceMaker Ministries)
3. “A Bible Reading Strategy for 2014” – Chuck Lawless gives a helpful Bible reading strategy plan for 2014. (ThomRanier.com)
4. “Greetings from Chuck (The epic christmas split)” – Chuck Norris tops Jean Claude Van Damme in new commercial. (YouTube)
“Many are amazed that it has taken the liberal left so long to actually call the Duck Dynasty family on the carpet for their views on marriage and sexuality. Why has it taken so long to pick up on their language? That being said, I’m asking another question this morning. Why has it taken so long for the Christian community to pick up on their language of “baptismal regeneration” in their YouTube sermons and religious speaking engagements? What exactly is the Duck Dynasty gospel? Why isn’t anyone talking about the evangelistic ministry of the Robertson’s church (White’s Ferry Road Church of Christ) called – “We Care” led by Larry West? He clearly articulates baptismal regeneration in his video “Step Into The Water, Is Baptism Essential?” which can be accessed directly from the website. In fact, the mere question of baptismal regeneration and Duck Dynasty in a conversation with Christians today may cause people to turn on you for “picking on” the Robertson family or it may just result in a room full of yawns.
“I agree with much of what Phil Robertson and his family believe regarding politics, the state of our nation, gun rights, hunting rights, and more. I laugh at their “southern style” jokes. I watch the show. I applaud Phil Robertson’s comments on the issues of sexual sin – after all – they originated in the Bible. However, I must draw the line when it comes to the gospel of Christ. When I listen to the Robertson family share the gospel I’m constantly frustrated with their language of “believe in Jesus and get in the water.” The greater controversy to me is not that it has taken so long for America and the LGBT community to pick up on the biblical language of the Robertson family related to sexual sin. The hidden controversy has yet to be discussed openly. Why has it taken so long for the church to discern the language of baptismal regeneration that is continually overflowing from the gospel presentations of the Duck Dynasty family. Could it be that the church is using the Duck Dynasty phenomenon in much the same way that A&E has been using them? We need to be clear on where we stand on human sexuality. Even more importantly is where we stand on the issue of the gospel of Jesus Christ.”
(Josh Buice, “Duck Dynasty – The Hidden Controversy” , Delivered by Grace)
1. Duck Dynasty Controversy
“The Genuine Conflict Being Ignored in the Duck Dynasty Debate” – The Atlantic’s Larry Alex Tauton describes the real conflict being ignored in the Duck Dynasty debate. (The Atlantic)
“Missing in the controversy over A&E’s handling of its golden goose—or duck, rather—is the fact that the real conflict here is not between Robertson and A&E; it is between gay activists and a solid majority of Christians who believe homosexual acts are wrong. Again, Robertson’s views are hardly anomalous. Christians may disagree on the details, but the Bible strongly condemns homosexuality in both the Old and New Testaments; the marriage model of one man and one woman is first given by God in Genesis 2 and reiterated by Jesus in Matthew 19; and in Romans 1 the Apostle Paul denounces homosexuality as a hallmark of a degenerate culture. The point here isn’t that you have to believe any of this, but many Christians do believe it and feel morally bound to believe it. Instead of acknowledging this tension, however, A&E, GLAAD, and their supporters have responded with disingenuous expressions of shock and horror. And it matters that it’s disingenuous, because if they actually acknowledged that there is a genuine conflict between orthodox Christianity and homosexual sex (along with several forms of heterosexual sex) they would have to confront head-on the fact that calling for a boycott or pressuring for Robertson’s suspension tells orthodox Christians that their religion is no longer acceptable, and that’s not a very politically correct thing to do. Right now, they are trying to weasel out of it by characterizing Robertson as a backwoods bigot who takes his moral cues from Deliverance rather than from a straightforward reading of the Bible and the historic teachings of the Christian religion.” – Larry Alex Taunton, The Atlantic
“Dr Brown on Piers Morgan with Ben Ferguson and Marc Lamont Hill” (YouTube); Dr. Michael Brown appears in panel discussion on the Piers Morgan Show.
“Paglia: Duck Dynasty uproar ‘utterly fascist, utterly Stalinist’” – Gay atheist Professor Camille Paglia responds to Duck Dynasty controversy. (The Daily Caller)
“To express yourself in a magazine in an interview — this is the level of punitive PC, utterly fascist, utterly Stalinist, OK, that my liberal colleagues in the Democratic Party and on college campuses have supported and promoted over the last several decades,” Paglia said. “This is the whole legacy of free speech 1960’s that have been lost by my own party.” – Camile Paglia
“The Robertson Family Official Statement” – Robertson family responds to Phil Robertson’s suspension.
“We want to thank all of you for your prayers and support. The family has spent much time in prayer since learning of A&E’s decision. We want you to know that first and foremost we are a family rooted in our faith in God and our belief that the Bible is His word. While some of Phil’s unfiltered comments to the reporter were coarse, his beliefs are grounded in the teachings of the Bible. Phil is a Godly man who follows what the Bible says are the greatest commandments: “Love the Lord your God with all your heart” and “Love your neighbor as yourself.” Phil would never incite or encourage hate.We are disappointed that Phil has been placed on hiatus for expressing his faith, which is his constitutionally protected right.We have had a successful working relationship with A&E but, as a family, we cannot imagine the show going forward without our patriarch at the helm. We are in discussions with A&E to see what that means for the future of Duck Dynasty. Again, thank you for your continued support of our family.”
“Duck Dynasty – The Hidden Controversy” – Josh Buice on the controversy behind the Duck Dynasty controversy. (Delivered by Grace)
“I agree with much of what Phil Robertson and his family believe regarding politics, the state of our nation, gun rights, hunting rights, and more. I laugh at their “southern style” jokes. I watch the show. I applaud Phil Robertson’s comments on the issues of sexual sin – after all – they originated in the Bible. However, I must draw the line when it comes to the gospel of Christ. When I listen to the Robertson family share the gospel I’m constantly frustrated with their language of “believe in Jesus and get in the water.” The greater controversy to me is not that it has taken so long for America and the LGBT community to pick up on the biblical language of the Robertson family related to sexual sin. The hidden controversy has yet to be discussed openly. Why has it taken so long for the church to discern the language of baptismal regeneration that is continually overflowing from the gospel presentations of the Duck Dynasty family. Could it be that the church is using the Duck Dynasty phenomenon in much the same way that A&E has been using them? We need to be clear on where we stand on human sexuality. Even more importantly is where we stand on the issue of the gospel of Jesus Christ.” – Josh Buice
“A&E suspends ‘Duck Dynasty’s’ Phil Robertson” – Fox News reports on Duck Dynasty controversy. (Fox News)
“You Have Been Warned—The “Duck Dynasty” Controversy” – Al Mohler on what the Duck Dynasty controversy means. (AlbertMohler.com)
“So the controversy over Duck Dynasty sends a clear signal to anyone who has anything to risk in public life: Say nothing about the sinfulness of homosexual acts or risk sure and certain destruction by the revolutionaries of the new morality. You have been warned.” – Al Mohler
“So, even as most evangelical Christians will likely have concerns about the way Phil Robertson expressed himself in some of his comments and where he made the comments, the fact remains that it is the moral judgment he asserted, not the manner of his assertion, that caused such an uproar. A quick look at the protests from gay activist groups like GLAAD will confirm that judgment. They have protested the words Robertson drew from the Bible and labeled them as “far outside of the mainstream understanding of LGBT people.”
“So the controversy over Duck Dynasty sends a clear signal to anyone who has anything to risk in public life: Say nothing about the sinfulness of homosexual acts or risk sure and certain destruction by the revolutionaries of the new morality. You have been warned.”
(Al Mohler, “You Have Been Warned—The “Duck Dynasty” Controversy”, AlbertMohler.com)