23 December 2012

Men and Church


Chuck, channeling Rod Dreher, considers the question why men don’t like church:

I’ll admit that I know very little about the Orthodox church.  From my outsider vantage point, its ritual and its rigidity (Dreher notes that many men come to Orthodox faith because it is difficult; it tests them much like the Marines or a triathlon) seems much more masculine than the more female-centric Protestant churches with which I’m more familiar.  In those you have a few head men and some fathers who take their families to church and help maintain some of the finances or do some handy work around the place, but you have a very strong female influence.  All of the social activities are soft and fluffy and polite, and everyone at church is soft and fluffy and polite.

This is pretty spot-on, but I think a couple of points are in order.

First, the modern form of the church is little more than a social club intended to praise nice people for doing nice things.  This is not its original intent.  The church that Christ established was meant to be the family of God and a place of spiritual refuge from the world.  It was to be a place where sin had no hold (though it inevitably creeps in).  Reading passages like I Corinthians 5 makes it abundantly clear that a lot of distinctly un-nice things were said in the early church, at least insofar as dealing with sin tends to be unpleasant.  I doubt that few modern churches have the balls to deal with sin properly, especially when they are busy castrating men who try to actually exercise some form of church leadership.  In many ways, the church is nothing more than the tyranny of the petticoat writ large, which is pretty much the reverse of the natural hierarchy of the church.

Second, most church doctrine is completely corrupt.  H.L. Mencken wrote, in his book In Praise of Women (review here), that many of the male activities—such as smoking, hunting and drinking—were activities that belonged more or less exclusively to males.  None of the activities are inherently sinful, and many male Christians over many centuries have engaged in these activities without ever once thinking that doing so was sinful.  Nowadays, many Christians view drinking and smoking as sinful (most fundies believe this, as do some sects of more mainstream denominations). While most do not regard hunting as sinful, a lot of Christians tend to be squeamish about it, and some do certainly frown on it.

Furthermore, the doctrine of equality has entered the church, and has even been supplanted by the myth of female superiority.  This denies the natural hierarchy established in the beginning (and later affirmed by not only the apostle Paul, but Christ himself), and undercuts male leadership.

The martial language of the New Testament (cf. Ephesians 6, e.g) has been replaced by a doctrine of pseudo-peace.  Jesus has been transformed from a savior that demands your best to a boyfriend that accepts you for who you are.  Theology is slowly dying, and is being replaced by, alternatively, a collection of busybody rules that subvert a true relationship with God and a paganistic pantheology that is so broadly accepting of any and all potential human degeneracy that invoking the name of God simply serves the reinforce the rationalizations of weak-willed women who want to sin as they please without ever having to feel guilt.

Finally, the church does little of value anymore.  Most of what is passed off as the work of the church is nothing more than activities for busybody Marthas.  The church-centric model of activity—things like youth groups, bible classes, multiple worship services, ladies’ classes, and some outreach programs—exist simply to give people something to do.  It is busywork.  The church often seems unconcerned with helping people in need, and with making sacrifices for others.  This is not always the case for all churches, but these are simply general observations.  This work gets in the way of a relationship with God, for there is no time for personal study and prayer, nor is there time for self-examination or meditation (Psalm 1:1-3).  Instead, the only thing there is time for is meaningless activities that are of no profit to anyone.

In sum, the church has become a vapid, busywork social club for feminists.  Nothing of value is accomplished, for nothing of value is attempted.  Male leadership is condemned wherever it is practiced.  No wonder men don’t like church.

3 comments:

  1. Beautiful post, and very well backed up by scripture. Ironically, if there is any group who needs a "spiritual refuge from the world" nowadays, it is men as a whole.

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  2. @Anon.- well, if the apostle Paul is to be believed, the church seemed to be primarily designed for men. If its taken over by women, things--as we have seen--go downhill rather rapidly.

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  3. There are churches out there with masculine vibes. Protestantism is so splintered today that you can find people who literally believe anything.

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