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  1. #181
    Professor KingsGambit's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Leonhard View Post
    That's a rather antagonistic approach to take towards non-Christian sources, some of the sources though that I remember were Christian. Long before I was a Christian I was a feminist, and I still keep in touch with the community, and there are a lot of Christian feminist circles talking about certain problems arising within the Christian communities who are heavy on complementarianism.
    Yes, I agree this was an unfair comment. I guarantee you that sites like the Wartburg Watch (a Christian feminist blog somewhat popular in my extended family, though I'm not a fan) are far more interested in this than your standard Bible skeptic, though admittedly a number of the big name Patheos atheist bloggers lately seem to primarily focus on criticizing the morality of Christians).
    "Technology has, in an enhanced way, given mockers a platform to set society on fire with polarizing speech. Internet culture privileges those whose insults are click bait." - Timothy Keller

  2. #182
    tWebber Adrift's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Leonhard View Post
    That's a rather antagonistic approach to take towards non-Christian sources
    I think it's a perfectly reasonable approach to take. Often times what seems strange to non-Christians isn't so strange to Christians within a certain context. Even on Christian websites, it's not completely uncommon to see people missing a greater context, or not following up with someone to get their take. There are plenty of times I've seen Christian magazines like Sojourners or even Christianity Today where I'm like, "eh, that's not exactly what was intended," or I find that I'm only getting part of the story. Context is important.

    Quote Originally Posted by Leonhard View Post
    some of the sources though that I remember were Christian. Long before I was a Christian I was a feminist, and I still keep in touch with the community, and there are a lot of Christian feminist circles talking about certain problems arising within the Christian communities who are heavy on complementarianism.
    I see.

    Quote Originally Posted by Leonhard View Post
    I didn't read it on Skeptics Bible Guide, or Fedora-Wearing-Atheist-Man-Dudes-Personal-Blog or some Reddit thread bashing Christianity if that's what you think.
    I wasn't asserting you had. There are plenty of places on Reddit, for instance, (r/news, r/NotTheOnion, r/AskHistorians, etc.) where Christian topics come up all of the time where people unfamiliar with a greater Christian context often misunderstand what is going on.


    Quote Originally Posted by Leonhard View Post
    That's all very well and good, and I have no doubt that in most cases it works out healthily. That does not remove the problems though,
    Which problem?

    Quote Originally Posted by Leonhard View Post
    nor the fact that a highly popular evangelical Christian told women to "endure the abuse for a season",
    As I pointed out earlier, I don't necessarily see a problem with that advice.

    Quote Originally Posted by Leonhard View Post
    and was given thousands of opportunities to clarify, and chose not to,
    Ok, so to me, this seems like the crux of the issue. As I stated in the previous post, I'm completely unfamiliar with the history of this issue. Who all asked Pastor Piper to clarify this subject?

    Quote Originally Posted by Leonhard View Post
    only surfacing to post one, lone, article saying that "It is okay for women to seek help from authorities" and then only after drowning it in a 1001 clarifications and pushing it out as a wrong corner case.
    Hmm. I thought his case was perfectly cogent. I didn't see him offering extraneous clarifications, or pushing it out as a wrong corner case. He's explaining a complicated matter in a delicate way. I see no problem with that. In fact, I'd rather see more of that well thought out sort of explanation, than the type that immediately jumps to extremes because they're afraid of what people might think of them.

    Quote Originally Posted by Leonhard View Post
    Why didn't he simply say that its okay to seek help from the authorities?
    He does.

    3. Women can faithfully seek civil recourse.

    But recourse to civil authorities may be the right thing for an abused wife to do. Threatening or intentionally inflicting bodily harm against a spouse (or other family members) is a misdemeanor in Minnesota, punishable by fines, short-term imprisonment, or both. Which means that a husband who threatens and intentionally injures his wife is not only breaking God’s moral law, but also the state’s civil law. In expecting his wife to quietly accept his threats and injuries, he is asking her to participate in his breaking of both God’s moral law and the state’s civil law.

    God himself has put law enforcement officers in place for the protection of the innocent. “If you do wrong, be afraid, for he does not bear the sword in vain. For he is the servant of God, an avenger who carries out God’s wrath on the wrongdoer” (Romans 13:4). A wife’s submission to the authority of civil law, for Christ’s sake, may, therefore, overrule her submission to a husband’s demand that she endure his injuries. This legitimate recourse to civil protection may be done in a spirit that does not contradict the spirit of love and submission to her husband, for a wife may take this recourse with a heavy and humble heart that longs for her husband’s repentance and the restoration of his nurturing leadership.


    Quote Originally Posted by Leonhard View Post
    Remember though all of this was in the context of religious communities having internal religious courts. Defacto this is what this is. Don't take the abuse case to the authorities, take it to the local court of Elders, and they'll decide if the authorities get involved or if its handled "internally".
    While watching the initial video, I didn't think for once that Piper was asserting that a battered woman should not go to the authorities before seeking advice in the religious community, which is why I questioned whether or not you were reading too much into it. Piper clearly (to me at least) distinguished the type of "abuse" he was referring to.

    Quote Originally Posted by Leonhard View Post
    I have no idea what to advice a person like that. One thing I would never advice anyone is to "endure it for a season".
    Depending on the abuse claim, I see absolutely nothing wrong with that sort of advice. Newlywed husband comes home every day and makes snide comments about his wife's cooking, and that she doesn't do enough around the house while he's gone. Does she immediately seek a divorce, or does she go to the church, and work for a time with a pastor or church counselor on helping the husband correct his behavior? There's a huge range between happily married, and a spouse beating the other within an inch of one's life. His advice of "endure it for a season" isn't bad in certain cases.

    Quote Originally Posted by Leonhard View Post
    It turned out that there were quite a few instances of that going on in the Assemblies of God congregations that John Piper headed. And they had all been protected by the communites, rather than the communities protecting the women.
    I see. Is this what his Q&A video was initially replying to, or did these claims come out subsequent to the video? Do you know if there are articles that discuss how Piper's church handled these cases when they were initially brought forward to pastors and counselors in his church? This would be incredibly valuable context that I wasn't aware of before I made my initial reply.

    Quote Originally Posted by Leonhard View Post
    The "endure it for a season", also applied to women who were experiencing physical abuse.
    Going back to the video, the "for a season" was in reference to "verbal abuse." The smack was endured "one night." I'll agree that it's a clumsy way of stating his case, but I think it's clear that he doesn't have in mind a woman enduring prolonged physical abuse. I think a much more charitable interpretation of his words is a scenario where a heavy argument gets out of hand, and, out of character, one party slaps the other.

    Quote Originally Posted by Leonhard View Post
    Honestly though he spends far more time talking about a highly imaginary case of a woman being tempted into group sex by her husband (2/3s of the video), than about the more realistic and problematic cases.
    I mean, it's a 4 minute video. Hard to stuff much detail into so little time. And it's not 2/3rds the video. He's referring to two types of abuse, one where the husband is coaxing the wife into sin (sexual or otherwise), the other where he is verbally or physically hurting her.

    Quote Originally Posted by Leonhard View Post
    A person can come back to the flock, but rights and privileges cannot be restored.
    What? Says who?

    Quote Originally Posted by Leonhard View Post
    If someone has beat his wife, she doesn't, neither for his sake, nor for Christs, owe him a second chance.
    No one is owed a second chance. It's by grace we're given second chances. It's by grace that you and I were given second chances. But drop for a second the idea that abuse only involves physically beating someone, is it ok to give the husband I mentioned in my above scenario a second chance? The one who was making snide, hurtful remarks, but who has since seen the error of his way and repented?

    Quote Originally Posted by Leonhard View Post
    The Christian community has only one responsibility there, backing her up, and if need be ensure that he doesn't corner her alone.
    The church has responsibilities to both parties (assuming the husband is also member of the congregation).



    To be clear, you realize that the only case I'm making here is that, based on that one video you linked (and now Piper's followup reply which I found on my own), I don't see a reason to view the video as a worse case scenario? I'm not saying you're necessarily wrong for taking the view that you have, especially if you have greater knowledge of the context of the video, merely that from my point of view, it's not nearly as damning as first presented.

  3. #183
    tWebber Mountain Man's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by KingsGambit View Post
    The "big name" I most hear associated with the practice of not calling the police is James Dobson. In his 1983 book, he gave extensive advice to battered women in one chapter. They included talk about how beaten women often are asking for it from their actions... but there is not a single word in the chapter about calling the police.

    After decades of bad publicity, he and his organization finally do respond to questioners by encouraging to call the police, but the damage was done.

    At the same time, I sort of get where the idea comes in based on Paul's instructions for Christians to solve their problems themselves. However I think the context of what Paul meant was not violent situations that needed immediate intervention from the police.
    That sounds like a very unfair criticism. Not explicitly saying that someone should call the police is quite different from actively discouraging them from calling the police. This seems like the typical disingenuous attack against Focus on the Family that they have been subjected to for pretty much as long as the ministry has existed.
    Some may call me foolish, and some may call me odd
    But I'd rather be a fool in the eyes of man
    Than a fool in the eyes of God


    From "Fools Gold" by Petra

  4. Amen Adrift amen'd this post.
  5. #184
    tWebber Leonhard's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Adrift View Post
    I think it's a perfectly reasonable approach to take.
    Its not at all a reasonable position to take, you basically poisoned the well up front, and even made assumptions about where I'd gotten the information. I'll try to track down the threads and articles again though, but it won't be tonight, and it won't be tomorrow.

    I wasn't asserting you had. There are plenty of places on Reddit, for instance, (r/news, r/NotTheOnion, r/AskHistorians, etc.) where Christian topics come up all of the time where people unfamiliar with a greater Christian context often misunderstand what is going on.
    As I said, it wasn't on Reddit.

    Which problem?
    Religious courts, religious internal church laws trumping secular laws, men were given special power over women and abusing it.

    Ok, so to me, this seems like the crux of the issue. As I stated in the previous post, I'm completely unfamiliar with the history of this issue. Who all asked Pastor Piper to clarify this subject?
    A thousand and one comments, emails, several other people writing articles about it. All simple calls for clarifications on something you think is trivially obvious.

    Hmm. I thought his case was perfectly cogent. I didn't see him offering extraneous clarifications, or pushing it out as a wrong corner case.
    We might have to disagree on that, I thought it was a lot of handwringing to answer a simple one sentence question that should be answered with a yes or no answer. "Can an abused woman seek help from the authorities?"

    Why does that require so much unpacking?

    He does.
    He did, after several years. And if that had been the only thing he posted, it would have been perfect. Yet that paragraph is burried deep in a much bigger article, talking a lot about the husband, and continues afterwards about the wife seeking help from the Church, and that she should be able to feel safe there. Meaning even then he still envisions her going there first.

    While watching the initial video, I didn't think for once that Piper was asserting that a battered woman should not go to the authorities before seeking advice in the religious community,
    Seems to me its not addressed at all. He just tells abused women, emotionally or physically to "endure it for a season", seek Church help, and mostly work towards reconsiliation. There doesn't seem to be much consideration for her health, or any mention of actual violent abuse, or spousal rape or what have we. Things that are actual problems, and worth of discussion.

    At least he could have filled up the first 2/3s of the clip talking about that, rather than a highly imaginary fantasy of his of a husband trying seduce his wife into an orgy.

    There's a huge range between happily married, and a spouse beating the other within an inch of one's life. His advice of "endure it for a season" isn't bad in certain cases.
    It would have taken five seconds for him to say "Of course if a woman is battered by a her husband she ought to seek help from the authorities, before taking it to the Church, who should work with the authorities and offer full support"

    I see. Is this what his Q&A video was initially replying to, or did these claims come out subsequent to the video? Do you know if there are articles that discuss how Piper's church handled these cases when they were initially brought forward to pastors and counselors in his church? This would be incredibly valuable context that I wasn't aware of before I made my initial reply.
    I will try to dig it all out, but it'll require some Google Archive spelunking. Its fair enough that you want the sources for what I say.

    Going back to the video, the "for a season" was in reference to "verbal abuse." The smack was endured "one night." I'll agree that it's a clumsy way of stating his case,
    If all he's talking about is a husband hitting his wife with a slap, and telling her to endure it for one night, I'd still say its going too far, but its a lot lighter than what I and a lot of other people heard. Because it sounded very clearly to me as saying that she should endure his physical abuses, for a season, that is to say for some months, while its worked out with the Church, and only when the Church steps in and says "You can't do this to her" is the matter being dealt with.

    And it's not 2/3rds the video.
    It is 2/3rds of the video. It takes that long for him to get away from that droll sex orgy seduction example, and start talking about something real.

    What? Says who?
    Any notion of Justice and Wisdom. A person can be forgiven, but there are rights and privileges that can never be restored to a person. For instance, there is a sense in which a person who has committed abuse to his wife, such as battering, even if he is forgiven and she waives any legal case, there is a sense in which that person can't regain the innocent trust they had before. That's been permanently sullied. Same with pedophiles, we can forgive them, in some cases their place in society can be restored. But often they can't be trusted around children in the same way someone else can.

    No one is owed a second chance.
    So you agree that a battered woman can tell you, if you were her counsilor that she wouldn't trust the person again, and then you would agree and support her in the Church and not pressure her to get back with him?

    But drop for a second the idea that abuse only involves physically beating someone, is it ok to give the husband I mentioned in my above scenario a second chance?
    Yes of course, if its a matter of spousal infighting and its not severe there's all sorts of reasonable responses. But since its battery I have in mind, would you agree that in those cases a woman can rightfully seek the authorities... once she has sought the authorities only then coming to the Church letting them know what has happened, and that the Church should support her and back her up, and kindly (but forcefully) book the abuser out of the community - no matter how much money he donates.

    My mom was soured quite a bit on her evangelical community. Its from a mostly good Christian group in Denmark called Inner Mission (meaning they do missioning within the country instead of other countries). She remembered this rich person in the community who often donated a lot in the collection plate, but she and many others also knew that he beat his wife quite regularly. Yet he was an upstanding member of the community, well liked, and met with the big boys in the Church.

    You see the disconnect there?

    The church has responsibilities to both parties (assuming the husband is also member of the congregation).
    And for his own sake, at least so he understands that he's done something-bad, he needs to be thrown out.

    He can get in after wearing sackcloth and ash on his face for a month. But even then, when he returns, I believe the community owes her protection, not him.

    To be clear, you realize that the only case I'm making here is that, based on that one video you linked (and now Piper's followup reply which I found on my own), I don't see a reason to view the video as a worse case scenario? I'm not saying you're necessarily wrong for taking the view that you have, especially if you have greater knowledge of the context of the video, merely that from my point of view, it's not nearly as damning as first presented.
    Granted, this also took a turn far away from what I was originally arguing, which is that religious courts aren't a new phenomenon.

  6. #185
    Professor KingsGambit's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Mountain Man View Post
    That sounds like a very unfair criticism. Not explicitly saying that someone should call the police is quite different from actively discouraging them from calling the police. This seems like the typical disingenuous attack against Focus on the Family that they have been subjected to for pretty much as long as the ministry has existed.
    If you write an entire chapter on how to respond to domestic violence and you don't even once mention the possibility of going to police, that's a pretty glaring omission, though it's definitely not nearly as bad as active discouragement of doing so.

    In any event, as I mentioned, Dobson and the ministry as a whole have later clarified their stance so as not to discourage anybody from going to the police if it's actually warranted.
    "Technology has, in an enhanced way, given mockers a platform to set society on fire with polarizing speech. Internet culture privileges those whose insults are click bait." - Timothy Keller

  7. #186
    tWebber Adrift's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Leonhard View Post
    Its not at all a reasonable position to take, you basically poisoned the well up front, and even made assumptions about where I'd gotten the information.
    Knowing the source for where complex issues are discussed is perfectly relevant. We often see, for instance, pop science articles that tend to go off into the bushes in order to weave a sensational story. My intent was not to poison the well, but to understand the context that your initial introduction to the issue was framed. There is nothing at all wrong with that. Had I said, "well, you probably got this from a skeptic website, and of course they're going twist things," then yes, I would have been poisoning the well. I didn't do that. I asked where you got it, and my question was sincere.

    Quote Originally Posted by Leonhard View Post
    As I said, it wasn't on Reddit.
    I merely mentioned certain subReddits as an example where one might find discussion on Christian topics in a secular place that do not necessarily abhor Christianity, but that might not understand certain concepts within a Christian worldview.

    Quote Originally Posted by Leonhard View Post
    Religious courts, religious internal church laws trumping secular laws, men were given special power over women and abusing it.
    Outside of cults, I don't think this is a serious problem within most of the Christian community, and so far I haven't seen any indication that John Piper is directly part of that problem.

    Quote Originally Posted by Leonhard View Post
    A thousand and one comments, emails, several other people writing articles about it. All simple calls for clarifications on something you think is trivially obvious.
    This seems a bit vague. Do you have a source, or a cite, or something that demonstrates that over a thousand people attempted and failed to contact John Piper about this issue personally? And just because people write about it in an article, or in the comments of an article is no indication that Piper read or was familiar with said articles/comments.

    Quote Originally Posted by Leonhard View Post
    We might have to disagree on that, I thought it was a lot of handwringing to answer a simple one sentence question that should be answered with a yes or no answer. "Can an abused woman seek help from the authorities?"

    Why does that require so much unpacking?
    I feel like I've explained why a few times. A charitable reading is that he had the larger issue of relationship and divorce in mind. The initial question wasn't "Can an abused woman seek help from the authorities," it was "What should a wife's submission to her husband look like if he's an abuser."

    Quote Originally Posted by Leonhard View Post
    He did, after several years. And if that had been the only thing he posted, it would have been perfect. Yet that paragraph is burried deep in a much bigger article, talking a lot about the husband, and continues afterwards about the wife seeking help from the Church, and that she should be able to feel safe there. Meaning even then he still envisions her going there first.
    Well, no. The article goes into civil law at a number of points. Points 2, 3, and 5 directly, and 6 indirectly. The article is only 7 points long, and it's not very large. And again, you're assuming the worse case scenario. In certain circumstances (for instance in cases where verbal abuse might be the issue) a woman might have zero recourse in going to the authorities.

    Quote Originally Posted by Leonhard View Post
    Seems to me its not addressed at all. He just tells abused women, emotionally or physically to "endure it for a season", seek Church help, and mostly work towards reconsiliation. There doesn't seem to be much consideration for her health, or any mention of actual violent abuse, or spousal rape or what have we. Things that are actual problems, and worth of discussion.

    At least he could have filled up the first 2/3s of the clip talking about that, rather than a highly imaginary fantasy of his of a husband trying seduce his wife into an orgy.
    Again, that's not an accurate representation of the video. I even quoted what he said in the video, so I don't understand the misrepresentation. Also, he's clearly referring to instances of abuse outside of violent abuse and spousal rape. There are varying degrees of abuse.

    Quote Originally Posted by Leonhard View Post
    It would have taken five seconds for him to say "Of course if a woman is battered by a her husband she ought to seek help from the authorities, before taking it to the Church, who should work with the authorities and offer full support"
    Perhaps, but he apparently wasn't thinking primarily of that form of abuse. He was clearly thinking of forms of abuse that involve submission, and the church's involvement. In discussion with my mother, a church counselor, it's the abuse that arises in standard spousal conflict that comes to the forefront far more often than violent beatings and rape.

    Quote Originally Posted by Leonhard View Post
    If all he's talking about is a husband hitting his wife with a slap, and telling her to endure it for one night, I'd still say its going too far, but its a lot lighter than what I and a lot of other people heard. Because it sounded very clearly to me as saying that she should endure his physical abuses, for a season, that is to say for some months, while its worked out with the Church, and only when the Church steps in and says "You can't do this to her" is the matter being dealt with.
    Please rewatch the video. That's clearly not what he's referring to. And I agree that even a slap is a line crosser, but in some relationships it's not the end of the world. It might be less tolerated today, but you watch old black and white films, and you'll see couples slapping each other left and right, and then making up by the end of the movie. And while I've never slapped a girlfriend in the face, I can think back to a couple instances where my she might have shoved me in the middle of an argument, or where I might have smacked an accusing finger out of my face.

    Quote Originally Posted by Leonhard View Post
    It is 2/3rds of the video. It takes that long for him to get away from that droll sex orgy seduction example, and start talking about something real.
    You're misremembering. He does not take up 2/3rds of the video talking about sex orgies. Up to about 1:37 of the video he's distinguishing between types of abuse, and asserting that the wife's duty is to submit first to the Lord and then to her husband. At the 1:37 mark he states, "So, if this man, for example, is calling her to engage in abusive acts willingly, group sex, or something really weird bizarre, harmful (that clearly would be sin), then the way she submits is...." Note he's not only talking about sex, but about abuse where one might be compelled to sin. That tangent starts at about the 1:37 mark and proceeds to about the 2:30 mark. That's less than a minute of a 4 minute video where he's talking about different types of abuse, the church's response to that abuse, and submission to Christ ahead of the husband.

    Quote Originally Posted by Leonhard View Post
    Any notion of Justice and Wisdom. A person can be forgiven, but there are rights and privileges that can never be restored to a person. For instance, there is a sense in which a person who has committed abuse to his wife, such as battering, even if he is forgiven and she waives any legal case, there is a sense in which that person can't regain the innocent trust they had before. That's been permanently sullied. Same with pedophiles, we can forgive them, in some cases their place in society can be restored. But often they can't be trusted around children in the same way someone else can.
    I have never heard any authority make this blanket claim, nor do I think it's Biblical. I stole a book when I was 16. Does that mean I should never be trusted near books again? Using the extreme case of child predation is over the top. Rights and privileges can be and ARE restored all of the time.

    Quote Originally Posted by Leonhard View Post
    So you agree that a battered woman can tell you, if you were her counsilor that she wouldn't trust the person again, and then you would agree and support her in the Church and not pressure her to get back with him?
    Well, of course. Now you have me really confused about what sort of position you think I'm taking on this.

    Quote Originally Posted by Leonhard View Post
    Yes of course, if its a matter of spousal infighting and its not severe there's all sorts of reasonable responses. But since its battery I have in mind, would you agree that in those cases a woman can rightfully seek the authorities... once she has sought the authorities only then coming to the Church letting them know what has happened, and that the Church should support her and back her up, and kindly (but forcefully) book the abuser out of the community - no matter how much money he donates.
    Again, of course. I'm surprised that this is even in question. And why do you only have battery in mind, when that's clearly not the type of abuse Piper had in mind in the initial video? And what does donated money have to do with anything?

    Quote Originally Posted by Leonhard View Post
    My mom was soured quite a bit on her evangelical community. Its from a mostly good Christian group in Denmark called Inner Mission (meaning they do missioning within the country instead of other countries). She remembered this rich person in the community who often donated a lot in the collection plate, but she and many others also knew that he beat his wife quite regularly. Yet he was an upstanding member of the community, well liked, and met with the big boys in the Church.

    You see the disconnect there?
    I don't. I have no idea how donating money should interfere in a church's duty to report physical abuse to the authorities, or to advise a spouse to report it before coming to the church.

    Quote Originally Posted by Leonhard View Post
    And for his own sake, at least so he understands that he's done something-bad, he needs to be thrown out.
    Wait, what? No, I wouldn't agree with that. We wouldn't throw a repentant sinner out of the church.

    Quote Originally Posted by Leonhard View Post
    He can get in after wearing sackcloth and ash on his face for a month. But even then, when he returns, I believe the community owes her protection, not him.
    Ohh... You're still thinking that the only type of abuse is violent physical abuse, aren't you? I think church correction shouldn't be blanket condemnation and casting out of the church. Different cases require different measures. Was the abuse physically violent? Have the couple reconciled and are still living with one another? Are they separated? Is he in jail? In a case where a wife walks into the church with bruises and welts, then of course the authorities should be called, the church should provide a place to stay like a battered shelter, and the husband informed he is not welcome. That's standard procedure at every church I've ever been to. In a case where the husband and wife fight a lot and he's verbally abusive, but both are in counseling, and he is repentant, and they're still living under the same roof, I see no reason that he should be thrown out of the church.

    Quote Originally Posted by Leonhard View Post
    Granted, this also took a turn far away from what I was originally arguing, which is that religious courts aren't a new phenomenon.
    Understood.
    Last edited by Adrift; 09-11-2019 at 03:35 PM.

  8. #187
    See, the Thing is... Cow Poke's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by KingsGambit View Post
    If you write an entire chapter on how to respond to domestic violence and you don't even once mention the possibility of going to police, that's a pretty glaring omission, though it's definitely not nearly as bad as active discouragement of doing so.

    In any event, as I mentioned, Dobson and the ministry as a whole have later clarified their stance so as not to discourage anybody from going to the police if it's actually warranted.
    And "actually warranted" needs to be decided by the abused.
    Every problem is the result of a previous solution.

  9. Amen oxmixmudd amen'd this post.
  10. #188
    tWebber
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    Quote Originally Posted by Mountain Man View Post
    It works just fine. 700 cases out of tens of millions of church going women does not suggest a widespread practice among US churches.
    Technically speaking, that was 700 cases in the SBC. The SBC has about 14 million members (according to Wikipedia). Presumably about half of those are women, so we'd end up with 7 million... not really "tens of millions".

    Granted, that is being somewhat nitpicky. But on a less nitpicky note, the original article did note that this is only 700 reported cases, and it's claimed that “The 700 victims revealed in this investigation are only the tip of the iceberg, since very few survivors of abuse ever come forward.” I'm not sure how accurate that is (it's not by the article author, it's a quote given by Boz Tchividjian), but it does seem plausible.

    I wouldn't be surprised if there were a lot more, especially as abuse in the SBC. That said, what I do question is if it has anything to do with the SBC or its policies, because this kind of abuse is (from the limited statistics we have) extremely rampant in public education. It seems to be less a problem of anything related to the SBC--outside of their resistance to enforcing a convention-wide "abuser list" due to how autonomous all the member churches are--and more the general problem of people abusing power and, when reported, the people it's reported to don't want to have to deal with it and try to bury it. Which, unfortunately, happens all across the board in organizations of any type, religious or secular--though there does seem to be some progress in improving this.
    Last edited by Terraceth; 09-11-2019 at 04:03 PM.

  11. #189
    tWebber Leonhard's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Adrift View Post
    There is nothing at all wrong with that. Had I said, "well, you probably got this from a skeptic website, and of course they're going twist things," then yes, I would have been poisoning the well. I didn't do that. I asked where you got it, and my question was sincere.
    You said specifically, and I'll quote it back to you "Did you find it on some secular or skeptic website that attempted to twist it into something that Piper didn't intend?"

    KingsGambit also found it uncharitable.

    Outside of cults, I don't think this is a serious problem within most of the Christian community, and so far I haven't seen any indication that John Piper is directly part of that problem.
    Fair enough. You don't consider elders in the Church to be a religious court of any kind.

    This seems a bit vague. Do you have a source, or a cite, or something that demonstrates that over a thousand people attempted and failed to contact John Piper about this issue personally? And just because people write about it in an article, or in the comments of an article is no indication that Piper read or was familiar with said articles/comments.
    I will try to gather the evidence as I've said. I do think its fair for you to request the information, but I hope you can understand that it will take a while to gather due to how Google's algorithms bury older news, articles etc. I might get around to it in the weekend though probably not as I'm visiting my father.

    And again, you're assuming the worse case scenario. In certain circumstances (for instance in cases where verbal abuse might be the issue) a woman might have zero recourse in going to the authorities.
    It just belays the point. Sometimes it is the worst case scenario. Its clear, well articulated problem. The sex orgy was much less actual a problem, than a wife experience actual and repeated spousal abuse, and getting clear answers should be simple and straight forward.

    Yes abuse is more complex, I never said it wasn't. No abuse doesn't mean only the worst case, but what made me aware of his sayings originally were the testimonies of women who had experienced the worst case, but had been steered back by the "elders" to her husband again and again, her concerns minimized, etc...

    Again, that's not an accurate representation of the video. I even quoted what he said in the video, so I don't understand the misrepresentation.
    I don't think its clear at all, neither did many others.

    Please rewatch the video. That's clearly not what he's referring to. And I agree that even a slap is a line crosser, but in some relationships it's not the end of the world. It might be less tolerated today, but you watch old black and white films, and you'll see couples slapping each other left and right, and then making up by the end of the movie. And while I've never slapped a girlfriend in the face, I can think back to a couple instances where my she might have shoved me in the middle of an argument, or where I might have smacked an accusing finger out of my face.
    We've grown and matured in this matter. C.S Lewis brilliantly out that each age had its morals and virtues that they were better on than in other cases, I do believe in this matter we're the better.

    You're misremembering. He does not take up 2/3rds of the video talking about sex orgies. Up to about 1:37 of the video he's distinguishing between types of abuse, and asserting that the wife's duty is to submit first to the Lord and then to her husband. At the 1:37 mark he states, "So, if this man, for example, is calling her to engage in abusive acts willingly, group sex, or something really weird bizarre, harmful (that clearly would be sin), then the way she submits is...." Note he's not only talking about sex, but about abuse where one might be compelled to sin. That tangent starts at about the 1:37 mark and proceeds to about the 2:30 mark. That's less than a minute of a 4 minute video where he's talking about different types of abuse, the church's response to that abuse, and submission to Christ ahead of the husband.
    Hmm, you're right, its only a minute he spends on that scenario. Must just have felt as longer to me. I'll grant this.

    I have never heard any authority make this blanket claim, nor do I think it's Biblical. I stole a book when I was 16. Does that mean I should never be trusted near books again? Using the extreme case of child predation is over the top. Rights and privileges can be and ARE restored all of the time.
    We agree on child predations, I also don't think we disagree on a person who's committed frequent and recurring acts of physical abuse towards their spouse. At least if we are, I will have to disagree with you, such a person cannot be given the same innocent trust he enjoyed once. That's just gone forever now.

    Well, of course. Now you have me really confused about what sort of position you think I'm taking on this.
    The feeling is quite mutual. You seem to think I only believe abuse to be violent.

    And why do you only have battery in mind,
    Because it happens, the victims are hushed, and the community often helps the abuser. And in complementarian relationships, and communities who claim its better than egalitarianism they quite often turn out to have a lot of problems with spousal abuse. Which doesn't seem surprising when you claim that the man is the lord of the house, and the woman be completely submissive to him. Its a power imbalance that lends itself to abuse.

    That's why I'm only a complementarian in spiritual matters, such as the role of the priest in the assembly, but in other matters I'm an egalitarian out of practical wisdom.

    I don't. I have no idea how donating money should interfere in a church's duty to report physical abuse to the authorities, or to advise a spouse to report it before coming to the church.
    Apparently he was a high-ranking member, and friends with the elders, and probably an elder too, and they didn't believe her words over his.

    Wait, what? No, I wouldn't agree with that. We wouldn't throw a repentant sinner out of the church.
    Then what would you do with a violent abuser, the wife has left him, made it clear to you that she won't be giving him a second chance. He comes back to the community. They're both in your congregation now. How is this managed?

    Ohh... You're still thinking that the only type of abuse is violent physical abuse, aren't you?
    *rolleyes*

    In a case where a wife walks into the church with bruises and welts, then of course the authorities should be called, the church should provide a place to stay like a battered shelter, and the husband informed he is not welcome. That's standard procedure at every church I've ever been to.
    This would have taken less than ten seconds to say. Yet he spends a full minute on a sex orgy scenario?

    Just say it then. Its not hard. It doesn't cost anything.
    Last edited by Leonhard; 09-11-2019 at 04:15 PM.

  12. #190
    tWebber Adrift's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Leonhard View Post
    You said specifically, and I'll quote it back to you "Did you find it on some secular or skeptic website that attempted to twist it into something that Piper didn't intend?"
    Correct. I was curious about the context. I don't think that undermines my point at all.

    Quote Originally Posted by Leonhard View Post
    KingsGambit also found it uncharitable.
    Yes, I noticed that and found his remark equally odd. In my experience it's relatively common to find secular websites both intentionally and unintentionally distorting news pertinent to Christians because they lack context of the Christian framework.

    Quote Originally Posted by Leonhard View Post
    Fair enough. You don't consider elders in the Church to be a religious court of any kind.
    In your average orthodox Christian congregation? No, at least not the type you referred to in your previous post, and certainly not in the sense of a Sharia court.

    Quote Originally Posted by Leonhard View Post
    I will try to gather the evidence as I've said. I do think its fair for you to request the information, but I hope you can understand that it will take a while to gather due to how Google's algorithms bury older news, articles etc. I might get around to it in the weekend though probably not as I'm visiting my father.
    I appreciate it.

    Quote Originally Posted by Leonhard View Post
    It just belays the point. Sometimes it is the worst case scenario. Its clear, well articulated problem. The sex orgy was much less actual a problem, than a wife experience actual and repeated spousal abuse, and getting clear answers should be simple and straight forward.

    Yes abuse is more complex, I never said it wasn't. No abuse doesn't mean only the worst case, but what made me aware of his sayings originally were the testimonies of women who had experienced the worst case, but had been steered back by the "elders" to her husband again and again, her concerns minimized, etc...
    What you and I may consider the typical case may not be so with a pastor who is routinely engaged in marriage counseling. As I mentioned previously, most cases that my mother takes aren't the physical abuse type. That's often overtly obvious, and quick to deal with, or the physically abused spouse avoids contact with the church entirely because of shame, and/or to protect the husband. The type of abuse that my mother often encounters is the verbal, unappreciative, and cynical type.

    Quote Originally Posted by Leonhard View Post
    I don't think its clear at all, neither did many others.
    Yeah, I don't know man. I don't get that.

    Quote Originally Posted by Leonhard View Post
    We've grown and matured in this matter. C.S Lewis brilliantly out that each age had its morals and virtues that they were better on than in other cases, I do believe in this matter we're the better.
    I hope so.

    Quote Originally Posted by Leonhard View Post
    Hmm, you're right, its only a minute he spends on that scenario. Must just have felt as longer to me. I'll grant this.
    Thank you. I can see how you might think it longer if it seems like he's leading up to that point, but it seems to me that he's diverging there between types of abuse.

    Quote Originally Posted by Leonhard View Post
    We agree on child predations, I also don't think we disagree on a person who's committed frequent and recurring acts of physical abuse towards their spouse. At least if we are, I will have to disagree with you, such a person cannot be given the same innocent trust he enjoyed once. That's just gone forever now.
    I think it would take a long time and a heavily noticeable change of heart to restore ones trust in someone like that, but I can't say forever. Unlikely as it may be, anything is possible, especially through the healing work of the Holy Spirit.

    Quote Originally Posted by Leonhard View Post
    Because it happens, the victims are hushed, and the community often helps the abuser. And in complementarian relationships, and communities who claim its better than egalitarianism they quite often turn out to have a lot of problems with spousal abuse. Which doesn't seem surprising when you claim that the man is the lord of the house, and the woman be completely submissive to him. Its a power imbalance that lends itself to abuse.

    That's why I'm only a complementarian in spiritual matters, such as the role of the priest in the assembly, but in other matters I'm an egalitarian out of practical wisdom.
    I agree of course that it happens, but through our discussion it seems like you're framing things in only the most severe forms of abuse, and not in what are probably the more common forms of abuse (at least, those forms of abuse that church marriage counselors are more likely to engage with).

    Quote Originally Posted by Leonhard View Post
    Apparently he was a high-ranking member, and friends with the elders, and probably an elder too, and they didn't believe her words over his.
    Well, I'm sorry to hear that. I think that's despicable. If I'm to be honest, I don't think highly of the type of church governance that incorporates "board of elders" as practiced in many churches, especially in churches where the elders have more pull than the pastor, but that's another thread derail probably.

    Quote Originally Posted by Leonhard View Post
    Then what would you do with a violent abuser, the wife has left him, made it clear to you that she won't be giving him a second chance. He comes back to the community. They're both in your congregation now. How is this managed?
    I gave my answer to this in the post you quoted.

    Quote Originally Posted by Leonhard View Post
    This would have taken less than ten seconds to say. Yet he spends a full minute on a sex orgy scenario?

    Just say it then. Its not hard. It doesn't cost anything.
    Again, a charitable reading of the video is that he's more focused on the type of abuse that he's routinely dealing with, the type that doesn't make the headlines or TV specials, but the type that someone worried about submission to their husband might inquire of a marriage counselor. And, again, I repeat, he did not spend a full minute on a sex orgy scenario. He spent a full minute on an abuse scenario where one might be compelled to sin, an example of which might be sexual sin.

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