Twice now, I have been mentioned in a thread at a small forum that is discussing the topic of bisexuality in a Christian Polygyny. First John Whitten accuses the poster "Sola" of "speaking with a Montana accent" and begs off of an answer by referring to her husband, and then in a joint communique, the "JCF Overseers" refer to me by using the term "anathema," which I have used, so I suppose I should clarify.
(Folks should know that I tried to join the forum, which I think at one point I was invited to join but did not, and they have wordlessly refused to let me do so. They've now locked the thread, shutting down the discussion anyway in their own forum.)
The "Dramatis Personæ" in this discussion are:
John Whitten, as himself. A Baptist Pastor from Arizona.
Dr. Keith "Allen," which is a nom de plume for Dr. Keith something or other. I've met Keith in person, so there is a real Dr. Keith behind the mask. Doc desires some degree of anonymity, so he has it.
Dr. William Luck, "a former Professor of Bible and Theology at the Moody Bible Institute."
A "Bud" Freshour,
"Sola Scriptura," a woman on my side of the issue, who is (or has been) permitted to discuss the issue. If she speaks with a Montana Accent it's because we do discuss this issue, but it would also seem that Dr. Luck speaks at times with a similar lilt.
And of course, Yours Truly.
A few others chime in, but those are the principals in the discussion.
There have been some questions and/or assumptions as to what JCF affirms in regard to sexual ethics. To help clarify these matters we have written this unanimity statement that helps clarify for those who desire to know our position.For the Biblically conservative Christian or fundamentalist, this represents a bit of a problem. What is a "Complementarian Patriarchy? Is that like "Jumbo Shrimp?" This seems to be a politically crafted remark that genuflects to the idea of absolute male headship within a family, but, um, not so much when it comes to the predictable female reaction, even among the Biblically conservative. I don't think you can use "complementarian" that way but it panders to the normal bridling response you get from women when you say that a man is the "boss of them."
JCF Leadership Affirms the following:1. God joins a man and a woman in a holy union. From Genesis we see that Adam was the head and Eve was the helpmate. This formed a relational pattern of complementarian patriarchy or headship within the family.
2. We are opposed to homosexual unions where men give up natural relations with women for relations with men. We are also opposed to women who give up natural relations with men for women.So, are they they then OK with homosexual relations between men that don't involve "homosexual unions?" I say this because they have not dealt with the question of what happens when you separate specific sex acts from the marriage covenant. The new category of what we might call "sensual relations" doesn't have any scriptural guidelines, a problem we keep pointing out, and JCF's "Overseers" don't really counter in any way.
The second part of point 2 doesn't cover women who don't give up "natural relations with men for women." Does this this allow women who engage in sensual and or sexual relations with one another but still engage in natural relations with men, permission to be sexual and/or sensual with one another? Additionally there is no mention of "homosexual union" in the case of women, so is that now allowable? Again I point to the idea that if a man dies and the women are all married to each other, as Dr. "Allen" maintained to me, there would be a resulting "homosexual union in form or appearance, but it would have resulted from a primarily heterosexual union in appearance (at least). The women involved wouldn't have "give(n) up natural relations with men for women" but would have been deprived of those natural relations by their husband's death. I remind you this is the kind of hair splitting necessary to arrive at their position in the first place, so I have every right in rebuttal, to split hairs as well.
3. We recognize in patriarchal families, as well with Evangelicals/Fundamentalists in general, there are some different interpretations to Romans 1:26-27 both in antiquity as well in the modern day by God honoring, honest, interpreters of Scripture. Because of this we affirm the need for each family head and person to search Scriptures diligently in regard to these differing interpretations which each have some plausibility to a greater or lesser degree.Yet Dr. Luck is reported to have said the following in the lead up to this joint and unanimous statement:
"In Roman's 1:26-27, Paul is not discussing law, but nature. I don't believe that a male head of a poly family has any more right to validate the bi-sexuality of his wives than a father has the right to do so for his female daughters.He's saying there is a disagreement over the prohibition of same sex female sensual and/or sexual relations in Romans 1 by early church fathers, but he shuts the door entirely on any historical position of Christianity that same sex female relations (sexual or sensual) are permitted because he said they cited what had to be the affirmative position of who a woman was for, contained in the creation accounts.
I do, however recognize that some orthodox church fathers do not believe that Rom. 1:26 opposes female-female sexuality at that point. I also understand that they oppose it from other passages, such as Genesis 1 & 2."
It really doesn't matter to me if all "Early Church Fathers" didn't agree on Romans 1, what matters to me is that none of them are cited and if they were, Dr. Luck's claim is not that they concluded same sex relations were permissible, he says they didn't conclude that they were.
Dr. Luck also seems to largely agree with me in saying:
"The idea that it involves anal sex with their husbands, I also reject as ill-based on any prior Biblical text, and inappropriately drawn from biology (any more than oral sex SHOULD be...which obviously it isn't in Song of Solomon). [Incidentally I find Song of Solomon 5:1 to be less likely to imply other wifely comment, than I do narrator comment.]"Both of these arguments were foundational when I sat down with Keith on July 8th. Dr. Luck refutes them and seems to agree almost completely with me.
4. We are opposed to any person forcing or requiring another person to submit to a sex act that violates that person's conscience.I guess this is the "complementarian" position. This also flatly contradicts Keith's assertion that a man's "headship" gave him the right to tell his wives to engage in sex play with one another, to please that man or for any other reason.
5. We are for each man being the patriarchal leader over his family and for him to be the spiritual leader who guides his family according to the Word of God to the best of his ability and in that we believe each man ought to pursue love, that which is edifying to the whole family, and holiness by the fruit of the Spirit. Where Scripture speaks the man is to govern in those areas. Where Scripture does not speak and where a person's conscience is not violated he is free to govern in those areas as the Spirit so leads him over his family.And now they engage in "doublespeak." Having expressed "compelentarian" ideas and swearing to the idea that on one should "force" anyone to do anything, they ignore the actual authority level of "patriarchs," who could order the death of family members, for lack of obedience. Please do not mistake me as being in favor of some new form of "honor killing." The church has but one punishment it can inflict against the will of any person, and that is shunning or excommunication. Nevertheless, the authority of the "Patriarch" was absolute, and he answered only to God, having the ability to put family members to death. This is hardly "complementarian."
For those of you who think I am saying I justify the beating of wives, let's just say it's against the law to do so, and leave it at that for now. I'll be willing to thrash that out in another discussion.
They then allow a man to "govern" in such a way as to allow bisexual behavior among his wives, Because scripture does not speak, yet Dr. Luck is suppose to have said that the failure to invoke a law against women in particular engaging in theft, that it doesn't mean they can steal any more than they can be homosexual.
This statement also seems to set up each and every family as some sort of congregational church, with the husband being every elder wrapped up into one. That's where I would use the word "Poppycock."
6. We are opposed to any position that elevates any secondary doctrine, which is not related to the gospel, to a first order status and by that condemns a person for not arriving at the same interpretation of Scripture in secondary areas of doctrine. If a person truly affirms the gospel, which is that Jesus Christ is God come in the flesh who died and arose again for our sins as LORD, and if that person is not walking in any deliberate sin then even some misunderstandings of Scripture do not mean such a person is anathema, cursed, or without Christ's eternal grace and salvation.This is the second reference to "yours truly." Perhaps I should have used another word but I still can't think of a better one, I'm open to suggestion though. Let's be clear that I did not state any of my opponents were unbelievers or had fallen from grace. As a "Predestinarian" I can't argue that any "fall from grace" if in fact they have been saved. I don't know the hearts of men, only God does. I am bound to only shunning those who state they believe yet espouse views incompatible with scripture that rip at the foundations of Christian life. In deference to any possible misunderstanding on their part, I offer the following:
"Anathema" as a word, springs directly from the Greek. It has a near mirror spelling equivalent in Latin and a virtually identical word, in spelling and meaning in English as well. Suffice it to say that the English definition of Anathema is not inconsistent with that of the Greek, but the definitions in our dictionaries have a different philosophy of language reflected in them. Nevertheless they overlap in this more specifically worded English definition:
"A formal ecclesiastical curse involving excommunication."This is the best way of understanding the word in English. In the Greek, it's first used (at least in the order of publication) in Acts in this verse, translated as "curse" in the KJV. Those taking the vow are not condemning themselves to eternal punishment if they fail to kill Paul, they are pronouncing a negative injunction on themselves for their possible failure.
So yes John, Keith, Bill and
7. As leaders we are unified in these truths and individually or corporately willing to discuss with anyone as needed any further positions or issues related to these matters.I've heard otherwise with regard to that "Unity." It's hard to tell though. I can say they're not discussing it with me, and I haven't been allowed access to their forum to do so there.
This is more consistent with trying to separate the flock, from their appointed shepherd, since they are talking to the flock. All communication with me has ceased.
The "JCF Overseers" statement still allows for an overtly practiced form of polyamory or bisexual behavior in marriage. The fact that they seem to all individually disapprove (with the possible exception of Dr. "Allen") makes no difference. It's like trying to say you're "Pro Life" yourself, but "respect a woman's right to choose."
You'd be "Pro Choice," not "Pro Life" in function and God cares what we do and say, but in the case of Polyamory, you're not endorsing it, but you will recruit and keep and allow the discussion and promotion of bisexual behavior among your congregants, so you're for it.
Sphere: Related Content