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Some Milk

  

Responding to Sean Penn’s Oscar speech:

In this worldview, gender is viewed as a social construct that has nothing to do with what it means to be human. Notwithstanding the accidents of biology, male and female are totally interchangeable in marriage and in society. The normalization of homosexual relations flows naturally from this view, as does advocacy of gay “marriage.” When male and female are interchangeable, almost any sexual arrangement can be normalized. Both Black and Penn put this worldview on display in their acceptance speeches.Denny Burk

Denny goes on to point out that gender, in the Christian worldview, is no accident at all. It is intentional. One of the beliefs of the ancient world (both Pagan and Jewish actually) is that man was initially a composite being, being both man and woman. Understand this, this belief has nothing to do with anatomy – this is a statement about the makeup of a human being, the traits and character. I must admit I’ve not studied what conclusions this belief led to in the pagan world. However, in the Jewish world it led to the idea that man and woman were split up (taking Adam’s rib), and brought back together as one in marriage. So, when Jesus says in the resurrection there will be no more marriage because man will be like the angels, this is the idea he is talking about. Understand this, we are neither talking about anatomy, nor the metaphysics of angels or spirit-beings, or that man will become ‘a god’/spirit-being. Jesus is saying that man will once again be made whole in the age to come, in the resurrection. Therefore marriage, the means of making one what was split, will be unnecessary.In our time now, marriage is the way to make one whole again. And that marriage of wholeness can only be accomplished between a man and a woman in the Christian worldview. That is what settles it for the Christian. We do not deny that any two people can love each other. We do not deny lots of things. What we deny is that it is God’s intention for marriage. That is why Christians are guarding the word – because the referent is their theology.

As far as I’m concerned, I would like to keep the institution of marriage a Christian concept. Though I agree everyone gets to fight over the term today. As it stands, we are in the majority. When I’m in the minority, I won’t whine that others get to control the word. But I won’t give up my worldview. As far as I’m concerned, give whichever couples whichever rights you want to. On civil legislation I have no view.

Christianity has to learn to operate without the power structures that have been so ingrained. Just like throwing money at the problem is never a solution – Power is never God’s solution. If you need to be reminded of that, remember the cross.

5 Responses to “Some Milk”

  1. on 02 Mar 2009 at 12:17 pmJohnE

    One of the beliefs of the ancient world (both Pagan and Jewish actually) is that man was initially a composite being, being both man and woman. Understand this, this belief has nothing to do with anatomy – this is a statement about the makeup of a human being, the traits and character. I must admit I’ve not studied what conclusions this belief led to in the pagan world. However, in the Jewish world it led to the idea that man and woman were split up (taking Adam’s rib), and brought back together as one in marriage. So, when Jesus says in the resurrection there will be no more marriage because man will be like the angels, this is the idea he is talking about. Understand this, we are neither talking about anatomy, nor the metaphysics of angels or spirit-beings, or that man will become ‘a god’/spirit-being.

    Well understand this, the belief that man was initially a composite being, being both man and woman, that man and woman were split up, is just a late Jewish speculation. None of the Jewish OT writers ever stated such a thing.

    Furthermore, not one of them ever stated that man and woman are “BROUGHT BACK together as one in marriage”. It is simply said “they shall become one flesh”. The “brought back” is no more than reading into the text. Therefore your conclusion about how “there will be no more marriage because man will be like the angels” is flawed.

    Jesus is saying that man will once again be made whole in the age to come

    No he doesn’t. Jesus, or anybody for that matter, never said man is not “whole”. Isn’t all this “made whole” thing an intelectual property of The Way International?

  2. on 03 Mar 2009 at 2:32 amMark C.

    When The Way Int. talked about being “made whole” in the sense of reuniting parts that had been divided, it was in a different context. They were usually referring to man having originally consisted of body, soul, and spirit, but having lost the spirit part, only to regain it in the new birth. Completely different meaning and context, with nothing to do with man having once been male and female.

    When the Bible refers to being “made whole,” it is talking about healing, either spiritually or physically, nothing about reuniting separated parts. Again, different meaning, different context.

    I don’t know where the idea that man was originally male and female originated, but it is not found in the Bible. I also can’t find where Denny was talking about this, in the link provided. He speaks of marriage being an image of the love between Christ and the Church, which is a Biblical concept. JohnO, where did those quotes come from? I’m a little confused as to who said what regarding this matter.

  3. on 03 Mar 2009 at 8:31 amJohnO

    The only quote I used is indicated in light gray indented text. To see more on this idea in the ancient world, see David Daube The New Testament and Rabbinic Judaism.

    When the Bible refers to being “made whole,” it is talking about healing, either spiritually or physically, nothing about reuniting separated parts. Again, different meaning, different context.

    Not quite. In fact when the Bible talks about Israel being “made whole”, it talks about bringing the twelve tribes back together – reuniting separate parts. And in the New Covenant God (through that covenant), and the true Torah is reunited with the people (law written on their hearts). I think our highly individualized reading has slanted many perspectives that we currently hold.

  4. on 03 Mar 2009 at 10:12 amMark C.

    JohnO,

    The OT does talk about reuniting Israel and Judah, but doesn’t use the phrase “made whole” that I can find, at least in NASB and KJV. Have you found it in any other versions?

  5. on 03 Mar 2009 at 11:03 amJohnO

    Word and concepts are flexible. The concept can be present without the word. And sometimes when the word is present the concept is in the background. What is more important than specific words and word studies is the overall story.

  

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