Baptist Preacher Says Homosexuality Should Be Capital Crime

A Baptist Pastor named Grayson Fritts in Knox County Tennessee said God has granted the power to government to arrest and execute homosexuals.  He made these statements while preaching from Leviticus 20:13 which says homosexuality is capital crime.

What is also very noteworthy is that Pastor Fritts was also a Knox County police detective for 19 years.  He had quietly accepted a buyout a couple weeks ago.  Some are calling for his police pension to be reviewed.

He claims that this never affected his job as a police officer equating it to if he worked at Burger King that he would still make food for homosexuals and not do anything to their food because it was his job to do so and this is the same way he carried out his duties as a police officer.

In the recording above, after his initial sermon which caused the media firestorm around him, he made it clear if you listen to his whole sermon, he never called on individual civilians to kill or do anything to homosexuals. He was saying God has invested the civil government with this power to arrest and execute homosexuals.

So those who were saying he was inciting his church members or other civilians to go out as individuals and cause harm to homosexuals are factually incorrect and the recordings of his sermons prove this.

You can read more about him in this article from WBIR.com entitled

Offensive and reprehensible’: Knox Co. DAG reviewing cases involving detective who condemned gay people and called for their executions in sermons

Many Christians on Facebook and elsewhere have said his statements saying he hates homosexuals are the complete opposite of the Christian faith and that hate of any kind has no place in true Christianity.

However, those Christians who say this may want to consider the words of King David in the Psalms:

“Do I not hate those who hate you, Lord,
    and abhor those who are in rebellion against you?
22 I have nothing but hatred for them;
    I count them my enemies.”

Psalm 139:21-22 (KJV)

God Both Hates and Loves Sinners

While anyone who reads this blog will know I have some disagreements with John Piper in some areas of theology, on this subject of hatred in regard to sin he has a great sermon and article about this entitled “God Loves the Sinner, But Hates the Sin?” where he states the following:

“The problem with the statement—“God loves the sinner, but hates the sin”—is that it is misleading. It is not a false statement. And what is misleading about it is the word but, but hates the sin, because but should be and. God loves the sinner and hates the sin. But implies he doesn’t hate the sinner—that is not true. God does hate sinners. Psalm 5:4: “You are not a God who delights in wickedness. Evil may not dwell with you. The boastful shall not stand before your eyes. You hate all evildoers.” Or Psalm 11:5: “The Lord tests the righteous, but his soul hates the wicked and the one who loves violence.” So it is just not true to give the impression that God doesn’t hate sinners by saying he loves the sinner and hates the sin. He does hate sinners. His wrath is real. It is not something he pours out on people he approves of.

This infinite disapproval is what the Bible means when it says God hates sinners. He infinitely disap-proves of them. Sin is not sinful except as committed by sinful hearts. Sin is an expression of anti-God human corruption, human hearts. Sinful volitions are owing to sinful hearts. Sin doesn’t just hang out there with its own existence, it is in hearts or it is nothing. Sins do not suffer in hell, sinners suffer in hell. I wonder what people who say that believe about hell, because he is not punishing sin in hell, he is punishing sinners in hell. He hates—now here is the paradox—and he loves at the same time. For God so loved the world that he hates. Hate and love are simultaneous as God looks upon hateful, rebellious, corrupt, loathsome, wicked God-dishonoring sinners.

Now here is the distinctions we need to make. This is just so crucial. I hope people will listen carefully. Hate and love both have two meanings each. Hate can be intense loathing of a quality or hate can be be-yond that the intense intentionality to destroy. Love, similarly, can be an intense delighting in a quality and it can be an intense intentionality to bless even in spite of the presence of some unsavory quality.”

And now after showing Piper’s words on the subject of hatred in the Scriptures I will add a few thoughts of my own on this subject.

If we examine the Scriptures we will find a truth that is uncomfortable for many modern Americans.  We are taught in our American culture that all forms of hate are bad and all forms of love are good.  The Bible however, teaches something very different.

The Bible teaches that hate is sometimes holy and love is sometimes vile.

Consider these two passages from the Scriptures below which illustrate these twin truths:

Ye that love the Lord, hate evil: he preserveth the souls of his saints; he delivereth them out of the hand of the wicked.

Psalm 97:10 (KJV)

26 For this cause God gave them up unto vile affections: for even their women did change the natural use into that which is against nature:

27 And likewise also the men, leaving the natural use of the woman, burned in their lust one toward another; men with men working that which is unseemly, and receiving in themselves that recompence of their error which was meet.”

Romans 1:26-27 (KJV)

This is Both a Religious Issue and a Political Issue

I have quoted the following statement from Leviticus 20:13 multiple times on this blog in past articles and comments:

If a man also lie with mankind, as he lieth with a woman, both of them have committed an abomination: they shall surely be put to death; their blood shall be upon them.

God has granted the civil government the right to treat homosexuality as a capital crime and Romans 13:4 says the following of the civil government’s authority by God to perform capital punishments for certain sins which he allows it for:

“For he is the minister of God to thee for good. But if thou do that which is evil, be afraid; for he beareth not the sword in vain: for he is the minister of God, a revenger to execute wrath upon him that doeth evil.”

But just as Pastor Fritts has said, I too have said this power DOES NOT belong to individual civilians.  There is no Biblical warrant for individual citizens to execute homosexuals, only the civil government has this power.

What this Pastor was doing was calling on our society to stop tolerating sin and to begin once again hating sin.  And he is calling for changes in our laws and government and for the recriminalization of homosexuality. 

Conclusion

Many who even disagree with his statements have said it was his free speech right as well as religious freedom right to make the statements he did from his church pulpit. But as I have stated on this blog several times, there are others in this country that want to criminalize what this man did from his pulpit.

But these same people do not realize that if this man were to be led away in hand cuffs for what he stated from his pulpit that this would probably ignite a second American civil war just as there are a few other issues that would as well (like gun confiscation).   So be careful of what you wish for (criminalizing Pastors preaching against homosexuality) because you may just reap the consequences of what you sow.

How Should a Christian Wife Deal with A Cheating Husband?

“My husband is having an emotional affair with his ex-girlfriend whom he got  pregnant during our separation. How does the Bible say a wife should deal with a cheating husband?” This question was posed in one of two emails I have received recently from two different Christian wives.

This question above was part of an email I received from a woman that has commented on this blog calling herself “Soul Fruit Sister”.  Below is larger excerpt from her email to me.

“My husband is having an emotional affair with his ex-girlfriend whom he got  pregnant during our separation. How does the Bible say a wife should deal with a cheating husband? His ex-girlfriend also has a boyfriend and another child with the man she is with now as well.

I saw text messages from her to my husband asking our marriage was and him writing back that it has been stressful between us. I also saw texts from my husband telling her how great she is, how gorgeous she is, etc. Meanwhile, he has pretty much emotionally abandoned me, although he still has sex with me and requires me to give him oral sex whenever he feels like it.

I’ve tried talking to him about talking to her this way multiple times, calmly, and at first, he said he would stop. His mother even spoke to him about it, and he told her he would quit but as of recently he still continues to speak with her on a daily basis about things he should only be talking with me about. I found this out by looking at one of his old phone’s that he recently had switched over. I don’t normally go through his phone because he keeps it on him at all times and he would be furious if I tried too.

It is now to a point where I’ve tried talking to him about it, telling him how it hurts me and how I would like for him to start setting boundaries that would reestablish trust between us, but he just ignored me.

The Scriptures command us to expose evil.  And in Matthew 18 we are told if a believer sins against us and refuses to repent after we have brought that sin to their attention, we should bring it to the church.

My husband claims to be a Christian, but his actions are clearly not those of a believer and he does not attend church. So, what then should my actions be?”

Below is another email I recently received from another Christian wife calling herself “Martha”:

“Dear BGR,

My husband claimed to be Christian many years ago when we got married. He was actually very active in our church and taught Sunday School at one point.  But over the years he has fallen away from the church but still claims to be a Christian.  He has not been to church now in several years.  While he never drives drunk (but rather has me drive him), I am still not happy with the amount of drinking he does or how foolish he gets when he drinks.  He also gets very flirtatious when he drinks.

So here is my problem, my husband travels for work often and recently he even admitted that some of his buddies have taken him to a strip club a few times when he has been away for work.  He claims he did nothing with the girls, but how do I know that? I have seen places on your blog where you have said that a man going to a strip club is him having virtual sex even if he never touches the woman. My husband has at least had virtual sex with these strippers and in the worst case he actually engaged in physical sexual activity with them.  How does the Bible say I should handle this as a Christian wife?”

So, what is the Biblical answer to the difficult situations that both these women find themselves in? What does the Bible say a Christian wife’s response should be to her cheating husband? Before we can answer this central question that both these wives are asking, we must put their question in perspective from a Biblical world view.

 

The Biblical Definition of a “Cheating Husband” is Different Than Our Modern Definition

Today most people, including Bible believing Christians, would define a cheating husband as a married man that is emotionally or physically intimate with a woman other than his wife.  They will refer to such a man as an “adulterer”.

There are a small number of wives today that would not feel their marriage is threatened by their husband having an emotionally intimate relationship with another woman while the vast majority of women would feel threatened by this.

And the reality is that often when a man shares his emotions with a woman, eventually she shares her body – at least in the beginning of a new relationship between them.  So, this concern that emotional intimacy between a husband and a woman other than his wife might lead to physical intimacy, is actually well founded.

But for most wives, it is not just the worry of their husbands engaging in physical intimacy with another woman.  Most wives want be the person that their husband shares all of his feelings with from his joys to his sorrows and his worries.

Let me put this another way.  For many women, their husband could never go near another woman emotionally or physically but if he holds back things from her, they also consider this to be “a breach of trust”.

It is not uncommon to hear of women divorcing their husbands, not because of sexual infidelity or abuse, but because of a breach of trust.  Either the husband lied to his wife about various things or he held things back from her.  Many wives want to know everything their husbands are thinking or doing and this is the center piece of marital faithfulness for many women.

I have actually heard of women that have no problem with their husbands going to strip clubs as long as they take their wife with them.  Other women don’t even have to go with their husbands, as long as the husband always tells her when and where he is going.  Some women even go so far as allowing their husbands to have sex with other women as long as the wife is present.   The common denominator in these situations is simply that there are no secrets between the husband and wife and nothing is held back.

Again, this comes back to a woman’s concept of marital faithfulness which starts with complete and utter openness, no secrets, nothing withheld and then in most cases it extends to physical intimacy as well.

In other words, for the overwhelming vast majority of women today, their concept of marital faithfulness is that they own their husband’s heart and his body.

But as Bible believing Christians, we must test everything we believe or feel by the Word of God as the Scriptures exhort us to “Prove all things; hold fast that which is good” (1 Thessalonians 5:21).

Christian ladies, this is one of those times I am going to ask you to brace yourselves and take off your cultural lenses.

Nowhere in all the Bible is a married man called an adulterer simply because he is emotionally intimate or sexually intimate with a woman not his wife.  But rather he is called an adulterer for the following three reasons:

  1. If he has sex with another man’s wife and then his sin of adultery is committed against the husband of that wife, not his wife. (Leviticus 20:10, Deuteronomy 22:22)
  2. If he wrongly divorces his wife. (Matthew 5:32)
  3. If he marries a woman who wrongly divorced her husband. (Mark 10:12)

In other words, based on the Biblical definition of an adulterer, a married man who has sex with an unmarried woman is NOT an adulterer, but rather he is a whoremonger.  A married man can only be labeled as an adulterer if he has sex with another man’s wife or if he wrongly divorces his wife.  Another way of putting this is the only way a married man’s behavior can Biblically be labeled as the sin of adultery against his wife is if he wrongly divorces her.

The Scriptures recognize this distinction between whoremongers and adulterers in Hebrews 13:14 where we read “Marriage is honourable in all, and the bed undefiled: but whoremongers and adulterers God will judge”.

Some Christian wives may be reading this and saying “ok fine so my cheating husband is called a whoremonger by God and not adulterer.  Who cares? He is still a cheating husband and committing marital unfaithfulness by his actions.”

 

But then we must ask what is the Biblical definition of marital faithfulness of man toward his wife?

A lot of Christian teachers online and in Christian pulpits across America say that a man having sex with women other than his wife is him committing adultery against her, an act of marital unfaithfulness and grounds for divorce.  They say this based on Matthew 5:32 which we previously referenced:

“But I say unto you, That whosoever shall put away his wife, saving for the cause of fornication, causeth her to commit adultery: and whosoever shall marry her that is divorced committeth adultery.”

Matthew 5:32 (KJV)

The problem is they are ignoring the gender specificity of this statement by Christ. Christ says a man may “put away his wife” for “fornication”.

And now comes a Biblical truth that completely conflicts with our American cultural values.

While Scripturally speaking, marital faithfulness for a woman toward her husband does hinge upon on her exclusively giving herself sexually to her husband there is no Biblical warrant for making the same statement of husbands toward their wives.

The reason that emotional and sexual exclusivity is never given as a criterion of marital faithfulness of a husband toward his wife is found in the following passage of the Bible:

“10 If he take him another wife; her food, her raiment, and her duty of marriage, shall he not diminish. 11 And if he do not these three unto her, then shall she go out free without money.”

Exodus 21:10-11 (KJV)

And there you have it right there in the Scriptures.  The reason emotional and sexual exclusivity is never given as a criterion of marital faithfulness of a husband toward his wife is because God allows men to practice polygamy or specifically polygyny.

I realize there is a lot of opposition in the Christian world and elsewhere to polygamy.  Often Christian preachers will say “polygamy was a sin God overlooked for a time”.  But such a statement is an assault on the holy character of God.  God never condones, regulates or allows something he considers to be sinful.

In Genesis 30:18, God rewarded Leah with another son because she gave her handmaid to her husband as another wife. God expressly set forth rules for the practice of polygamy in Exodus 21:10-11, Deuteronomy 21:15-17 and Deuteronomy 25:5-7. While God warned against Kings hording wives in Deuteronomy 17:17 as Solomon would later do, he told David in II Samuel 12:8 when he sinned with Bathsheba that he had given David many wives and would have given him many more wives.

In Ezekiel 23:1-5 God pictures himself as a polygamist husband of two wives, those being the northern kingdom of Israel and the southern kingdom of Judah.  And in Romans 10:19 we read that God is taking on a new wife in the form of the Church to make his first wife, the nation of Israel, jealous so that she may return to him.

Those who oppose polygamy as an allowable extension of God’s design for marriage and insist that “God’s design was for a man to be married to one woman as seen in his creation of one wife for Adam” must then say God violated his own design in allowing and regulating the practice of polygamy for Israel.

And those who say “well God allowed divorce to and that was not part of his design” fail to recognize that God said he hates divorce in Malachi 2:16 but never in all the Scriptures does he say he hates polygamy or that he had to allow it because of sin.

And before we move on from this subject of polygamy back to the Biblical definition of martial faithfulness, I want to quickly address one other argument against the practice of Biblical polygamy.  Some may say “Well maybe God allows polygamy for men, but the laws of various nations including the United States do not.  Therefore, even though God allows men to practice polygamy they cannot because it is illegal by the law of the United States.”

The problem with this belief is that is built upon the false teaching that civil authorities are unlimited in their power.  Many Christians believe the government can regulate and legislate any area of our lives as long as that regulation or law does not ask us to sin against God (Acts 5:29).  But Christ taught us that civil government is actually limited in its scope when he made the following statement below:

“And Jesus answering said unto them, Render to Caesar the things that are Caesar’s, and to God the things that are God’s. And they marvelled at him.”

Mark 12:17 (KJV)

Jesus did not say render to God everything that is God’s and everything else render to Caesar.   No, my friends, he told us to render to Caesar the things that are Caesar’s. God never granted authority over marriage to the either the civil government or the Church. Instead he granted authority over marriage to the family and specifically to fathers. This is why it is consistently seen throughout the Scriptures that fathers give or refuse their daughters for marriage (Jeremiah 29:6, Exodus 22:16-17) and neither the civil government nor church has any part in this.

For more on the subject of Biblical polygamy see my five part series on Polygamy which starts with “Why Polygamy Is Not Unbiblical Part 1”.

 

Now, having proven from the Scriptures why emotional and sexual exclusivity is never given as a criterion of marital faithfulness of a husband toward his wife we will return to what God defines as marital faithfulness of a husband toward his wife.

Unlike how God defines marital faithfulness for a woman, marital faithfulness for a man has nothing to do with the exclusivity of his relationship with his wife, but rather it centers on his loving provision for his wife.

Marital faithfulness of a husband toward his wife is defined by God in Exodus 21:10-11 as a husband providing his wife with food, clothing and sexual relations.   

So, we can see by looking at the Scriptures that like many other things today, our definition of a cheating husband is very different than God’s definition of a cheating husband.

God’s definition of a cheating husband is a man that does not provide his wife with the necessities of life including sexual relations.

The New Testament repeats the concepts we just read in Exodus 21:10-11 where we see these responsibilities of a husband toward his wife repeated in the following passages:

“28 So ought men to love their wives as their own bodies. He that loveth his wife loveth himself. 29 For no man ever yet hated his own flesh; but nourisheth and cherisheth it, even as the Lord the church”

Ephesians 5:28-29 (KJV)

“3 Let the husband render unto the wife due benevolence: and likewise also the wife unto the husband. 4 The wife hath not power of her own body, but the husband: and likewise also the husband hath not power of his own body, but the wife. 5 Defraud ye not one the other, except it be with consent for a time, that ye may give yourselves to fasting and prayer; and come together again, that Satan tempt you not for your incontinency.”

I Corinthians 7:3-5 (KJV)

The word “nourisheth” has the idea of provision which would correlate back to Exodus 21:10’s command that a man provide food for his wife.  The word “cherisheth” does not carry the modern romantic definition of this word which has come to mean “putting one’s wife on a pedestal”.  It actually has the idea of a mother hen keeping her eggs protected and warm which correlates back to Exodus 21:10’s command for a man to properly cloth his wife which would protect her body from the elements.

And Exodus 21:10’s call for men to perform their marital duty with their wives, or in other words give them sexual relations is restated in the passage above from I Corinthians 7:3-5.

 

Are You Saying it is OK for Husbands to Have Sex with Other Women?

Unless your husband is properly practicing Biblical polygamy in which he intends to continue to provide for you and new wives he takes no it is not OK for him to simply have sex with other women. To do so is by definition whoremongering which God says he will judge in Hebrews 13:4.

The reality is that most men in western culture will not or cannot practice Biblical polygamy because of cultural and financial obstacles to doing so.  It does not make it wrong for the few men who can overcome both these obstacles, but the majority of men simply cannot.

Neither of the husbands mentioned in the two emails I received are attempting to practice Biblical polygamy.

Martha’s husband who is going to strip clubs is definitely engaging in a least virtual sexual relations in these clubs, if not actual physical sexual relations.  Therefore, he being a whoremonger which is a sin against God’s law.

But what about Soul Fruit Sister’s husband and his emotional affair with his ex-girlfriend? That one is a bit trickier.  Is he engaging in a virtual form of sexual relations with her? Right now, the answer appears to be no.

Is what he is doing still inappropriate? Yes.  And here is the reason why.

While he may not be having virtual or physical sexual relations with this other woman, he may still be guilty of making “provision for the flesh, to fulfil the lusts thereof” (Romans 13:14) and putting himself in a position where some type of illicit sexual relationship could happen and this is why is actions are wrong.

How Should These Two Wives Deal with Their Husband’s Sins?

As I just stated, Martha’s husband by attending strip clubs is definitely committing the sin of whoremongering by engaging in at least virtual or physical sexual relations with strippers.

Soul Fruit Sister’s husband is making provision for himself to fall into sexual sin which is a sin in and of itself.

In the case of Martha’s husband which is clear cut case of sexual sin it would not be inappropriate for her to bring this to her church elders if her husband was church member.  But my reasoning for this is not based on Matthew 18 which Soul Fruit Sister alluded to.

First let’s look at Matthew 18:15-17 (KJV):

“15 Moreover if thy brother shall trespass against thee, go and tell him his fault between thee and him alone: if he shall hear thee, thou hast gained thy brother.16 But if he will not hear thee, then take with thee one or two more, that in the mouth of two or three witnesses every word may be established.17 And if he shall neglect to hear them, tell it unto the church: but if he neglect to hear the church, let him be unto thee as an heathen man and a publican.”

Some Christians have wrongly interpreted Matthew 18:15-17 to mean we can go to our church elders anytime anyone in the church does even the slightest thing to us.  If they won’t admit their fault to us in private, we can run to the church elders and tattle on them.   But this is not what Christ is saying at all when we look at the entirety of the New Testament witness.

As Christians we must balance two principles.

On the one hand we are called to follow the Scriptural principle and example of Christ which in I Peter 2:19 states “For this is thankworthy, if a man for conscience toward God endure grief, suffering wrongfully”. So, if our first instinct every time we are wronged in any way by a fellow believer is to run to the church and tattle on them then we are not following Christ’s example in suffering wrongly.

So, what is the standard of bringing one before the Church for Church discipline?  The standard is given to us in the following passages of the Bible:

“11 But now I have written unto you not to keep company, if any man that is called a brother be a fornicator, or covetous, or an idolator, or a railer, or a drunkard, or an extortioner; with such an one no not to eat. 12 For what have I to do to judge them also that are without? do not ye judge them that are within? 13 But them that are without God judgeth. Therefore put away from among yourselves that wicked person. “

1 Corinthians 5:11-13 (KJV)

 “And if any man obey not our word by this epistle, note that man, and have no company with him, that he may be ashamed.”

2 Thessalonians 3:14 (KJV)

So, if a person is living an openly sinful lifestyle which includes him being a fornicator or if a person is a church member and telling people not to follow the Bible such people can be brought before the Church for discipline and possible expulsion if they refuse to repent.

So, in the case of Martha’s husband if he were a member of a church than his fornication at strip clubs would constitute an assault on the purity of the church.  Therefore, she would be right in bringing his sin to the church.

But here is a key concept that must be understood.  His sin of fornication is against God, not his wife.  But that is the opposite of how most churches and Christians would approach this sin today.

Remember we have shown from the Scriptures that a husband can only commit adultery against his wife in one way and that is by seeking to divorce her for a reason other than her being sexually unfaithful to him. So, if a man wants to put his wife away, because his girl friend wants him to dump his wife and marry her this is absolutely something that should be brought before the church if he is a church member as it is a direct sin against his wife and also against God and the purity of the Church.

But in the case Soul Fruit Sister’s husband putting himself in a possible position to sexually sin I am not sure this rises to the level that she would bring this to the church if he were a member.

However, whether these husbands were both church members or not must realize the most the church can do is condemn their actions and expel them from the church if they will not repent.  In either case of them being members or not of churches, the wives will still be left with the aftermath.

So how should a Christian wife deal with her husband’s whoremongering or even putting himself in a possible position to sexually sin because of inappropriate emotional intimacy with another woman?

The answer is found in the following passage of the Bible:

“1 Likewise, ye wives, be in subjection to your own husbands; that, if any obey not the word, they also may without the word be won by the conversation of the wives; 2 While they behold your chaste conversation coupled with fear.

3 Whose adorning let it not be that outward adorning of plaiting the hair, and of wearing of gold, or of putting on of apparel; 4 But let it be the hidden man of the heart, in that which is not corruptible, even the ornament of a meek and quiet spirit, which is in the sight of God of great price.

5 For after this manner in the old time the holy women also, who trusted in God, adorned themselves, being in subjection unto their own husbands: 6 Even as Sara obeyed Abraham, calling him lord: whose daughters ye are, as long as ye do well, and are not afraid with any amazement.”

I Peter 3:1-6 (KJV)

Would the two wives who wrote me agree that their husbands are not obeying the Word of God in the behavior they are engaging in? I think they absolutely would agree.

So then it would follow that If they agree that their husbands are in fact being disobedient to the Word of God then they must also agree with God’s prescription for how Christian wives should deal with the disobedience of their husbands including but not limited to the sin of whoremongering or making provision for the flesh to fulfill its desires.

And Gods prescription for how wives should deal with their disobedient husbands is to win them to God without preaching the Word at them, nagging them and shaming them.  But rather he wants them to wind them by their pure and reverent behavior and to adorn themselves with a quiet and meek spirit.

This prescription for wives in dealing with the sin of their husbands is the exact opposite of what a wife’s sin nature will tell her to do and unfortunately it is also the exact opposite of what many Christian pastors and teachers will tell wives to do.  But it is the truth of the Word of God.

Do I Still Have to Have Sex With My Whoremongering Husband?

I have seen many women throughout the years try and take the approach that since their husband is whoring around and might give them some sexually transmitted disease, even one that is fatal like the AIDs virus, that this gives them a free ticket to divorce their husband or at the very least refuse to have sex with him until his whoring stops and he is tested for STDs.

But let’s change the situation a bit.  What if a woman’s husband worked for the CDC (Centers for Disease Control and Prevention) or some other medical group where he traveled around the country or even around the world and it might be possible for him to contract a whole host of infectious diseases non-fatal and fatal alike? Would it be right for his wife to say she does not have to have sex with her husband because it might be too risky?

Now from a non-Biblical, secularist world view the answer here is simple.  Your happiness as well as physical and mental health are the most important thing in the world.  You don’t owe your husband sex or anything else for that matter that you don’t want to do. In fact if makes you happier, just leave the bum.

But God gives this command to both husbands and wives in marriage:

Let the husband render unto the wife due benevolence: and likewise also the wife unto the husband.

I Corinthians 7:3 (KJV)

Except for limited agreed upon times for prayer, fasting or medical conditions like surgery, child birth or other things like that – a wife has no Biblical warrant to refuse to render under her body under her husband in the act of sex.

And if you are a woman that believes that God created you for a purpose and that the Bible is the Word of God and the guide for your life then your personal happiness and even health should not be your greatest concern.   Your greatest concern should be to bring glory to God and sometimes that means suffering wrongly because of others wrong actions.  We see the following example of Christ given to us in the Scriptures:

21 For even hereunto were ye called: because Christ also suffered for us, leaving us an example, that ye should follow his steps:

22 Who did no sin, neither was guile found in his mouth: 23 Who, when he was reviled, reviled not again; when he suffered, he threatened not; but committed himself to him that judgeth righteously: 24 Who his own self bare our sins in his own body on the tree, that we, being dead to sins, should live unto righteousness: by whose stripes ye were healed.”

I Peter 2:21-24 (KJV)

Just as Christ bore the consequences of our sins, sometimes a wife must bare the consequences of her husband’s sins.

 

The Reality of Whoremongering Husbands Reveals A Sinful View of Marriage in Women

Often times in life one person’s sin will also reveal another person’s sin.  For instance, sometimes we will find out after a man engages in whoremongering that his wife was sexually denying him for years before he ever committed the acts.  This in no way justifies his sin, but this is an example of one sin in one person revealing the sin another person.

The central question of this article was how Christian women should deal with what our culture calls a “cheating husband”.  There is no doubt that a whoremongering husband is sinning against God as we have pointed out here and we have just outlined the Biblical prescription for how Christian wives should deal with this.

However, the sinful reality of a whoremongering husband can also reveal our culture’s faulty and unbiblical view of marriage. And many Christian wives today have that sinful view of their marriage whether their husband ever engages in whoremongering or not.  It is simply that whoremongering by a husband brings this faulty type of thinking of wives to the surface for all to see.

And that sinful view of marriage is rooted in the false belief that wives are entitled to their husbands centering their hearts, minds and affections solely on them.   It is their belief that they are entitled to total transparency, to know their husbands every feeling and every thought. That in essence their husband’s heart, mind and life should belong to them exclusively.

God speaks of this sinful inclination in women in Genesis 3:16:

 “Unto the woman he said, I will greatly multiply thy sorrow and thy conception; in sorrow thou shalt bring forth children; and thy desire shall be to thy husband, and he shall rule over thee.”

A lot of Christians do not understand what that last phrase means when God said to the woman “thy desire shall be to thy husband, and he shall rule over thee”.  Many people have seen the woman’s desire to her husband as a loving desire and Christian feminists present the phrase “he shall rule over thee” as saying man’s headship over woman was only because of the fall.

Both of the above interpretations of this very important passage of the Bible are wrong.  God knew his words in Genesis 3:16 would come to be distorted so he used similar phrasing just one chapter later when speaking to Cain in Genesis 4:7:

“If thou doest well, shalt thou not be accepted? and if thou doest not well, sin lieth at the door. And unto thee shall be his desire, and thou shalt rule over him.”

Was God saying Sin’s desire for Cain was good? Absolutely not! Sin’s desire was to dominate and control him.  God knew this so he told Cain that he must rule over his sin nature, otherwise his sin nature would desire to control and dominate his life.

So, looking back at Genesis 3:16 in light of what God said to Cain, what kind of sinful desire was God saying a woman would have toward her husband?

The sinful desire God is referring to in women is their desire to know their husband’s every thought and to have his complete desire, affection and really life’s focus be on them and them alone.

The scary thing is – what I have just stated is now the central philosophy of modern marriage counseling and teaching both within the church and outside the church. And it this modern ideology which totally turns the Biblical model of marriage upside down.  Does the Bible say the husband was created for his wife or does it say his wife was created for him?

The Scriptures have an unambiguous answer for this question.

“Neither was the man created for the woman; but the woman for the man.”

I Corinthians 11:9 (KJV)

Conclusion

In the case of a whoremongering husband a wife may have to bring this to the Church if he is a church member.  But her motive in doing this should not be from a position that he has sinned against her in his whoremongering or adultery if he has been with another man’s wife.  But rather that he has sinned against God and possibly another man in taking his wife and his sin is polluting the purity of the Church.

But if he is not a church member or he has been excommunicated from the Church she has no biblical right to divorce him.  Instead God calls her to continue to submit to him and attempt to win him to God by her reverence and pure life style that she displays before him.

And a wife must also remember that often as God reveals the sinful actions of her husband, he may also reveal the sinful inclinations in her heart to be possessive and controlling toward her husband thus forgetting her place in God’s creation order.

Would Society Be Better If Girls Married as Soon as They Menstruated?

A Christian mother and regular reader of my blog asked “Would society be better if we returned to the standard that girls could marry as soon as they menstruated and were capable of having kids?” To ask such a question in America in the year 2019 seems patently absurd. Of course, society would NOT be better off if girls could marry as soon as they menstruated! Before we go further to address the obvious absurdity of this woman’s question here is the full email from her below.

Here is the complete email I received from a woman calling herself Rebekah:

“Long time reader, first time writer. First, I want to thank you for your trenchant insights, observations, and monologues. It’s great to find a man with such a passion for Christ and a traditional way of life. I’m a married mother with 3 daughters (12, 13, and 16) and (15) one son and my hubby and I are raising them to be good Christians and to abide by traditional gender roles.

I recently had a discussion with my husband about the expectation for marriage and we wondered, would society be better if we returned to the standard that girls could marry as soon as they menstruated and were capable of having kids? My two eldest daughters are certainly capable, and they are very motherly already.

What is your opinion?”

Why do such statements as the ones above evoke such a sense of righteous indignation from most of us in modern America and Western culture?  We will discuss these reasons next.

Why Modern Society Disapproves of the Pubescent Marriage of Women

Ancient and medieval historical records can attest to the following statement that was made in an article entitled “Child Marriage – Rationale, Historical Views, And Consequences” :

 “Child marriages involving only one marriage partner below the age of 18, usually the female, are also quite common. Throughout history till the 20th century, child marriages were the norm in most parts of the world. With the average life expectancy during such times being only 40 to 45 years of age, child marriages were the faster way to reproduce. Girls were usually married off as soon as they reached puberty or sometimes even prior to that.”

In the same article they mention in addition to shorter life expectancies that there were often economic reasons as well:

“Over the years, a large number of reasons have been suggested as triggers behind the practice of child marriage. Economic problems have been one of the primary factors that have forced parents to marry off their young girls. The system of dowry prevailing in many countries where parents of girls have to bestow hefty sums of money or expensive goods and ornaments to the in-laws’ families of their daughters have led to the consideration of the girl child as a burden in such households. However, the high demand of young girls in the marriage market have helped parents marry off their girl child to an older man, often receiving money in return, allowing them to overcome the burdens of dowry and even economically benefiting from the process.”

But in the same article we then find the reasons for our modern Western society’s disapproval of marriage for women of pubescent age:

“Child marriage is associated with scientifically established adverse effects to the young female child’s health. Pregnant girls below the age of 15 have a 5 to 7 times higher chance of dying during childbirth as compared to pregnant women in their twenties. Child mothers are also more susceptible to develop obstetric fistula, cervical cancer, sexually transmitted diseases and other health problems. Infant mortality rates are also 60% higher in case of children born of mothers who are below the age of 18 years. Child marriage usually deprives the female child of educational rights, leading to the loss of financial independence of the child in her future. Child brides are also susceptible to domestic violence, marital rapes and sexual abuse as they are not mature enough to protest and not independent enough to escape adverse situations in their conjugal life.”

So young mothers under 15 having 5 to 7 times higher of a chance of dying from their pregnancy should be enough for all us to oppose pubescent marriage for young girls, right?

And then what about the fact these poor young girls may be deprived of education rights which will lead to a loss of financial independence from their future husbands? And their higher susceptibility to tolerate future abuse from their future husbands?

Is this not an open and shut case against the marriage of pubescent age women?

Well before we can totally wrap up our conclusion, we need to tie up a few “loose ends”.

Putting Maternal and Infant Mortality Rates in Perspective

Two of the “loose ends” we need to tie up are maternal and infant mortality rates. Previously we were told one of the reasons we should oppose the marriage of pubescent age women is because women in this age group have higher chances of dying from child birth and their infants have a higher chance of dying after birth within the first year.

The maternal mortality rate (MMR) is the number of women who die each year at any stage of pregnancy.  According to the World Health Organization(WHO) 211 million women get pregnant each year.

The sad news for us as Christians and those who value human life is that 46 million of those pregnancies are ended by the murderous act of abortion.  That means 165 million women continue with their pregnancies.  Of those 165 million pregnancies, 123 million will be “successful”, meaning that the mother gives birth and the child survives.

Of the children that survive in these 123 million births, 2.51 million, or 2 percent, will die before reaching their first birthday (this is the global infant mortality rate).

About 302,950 women die each year worldwide from pregnancy.  That means women worldwide have a 0.2 percent chance dying from pregnancy related health problems or on the other hand they have a 99.8 percent chance of dying from pregnancy.

To put these numbers further in perspective, of those 302,950 women who die from pregnancy each year 99 percent of pregnancy related deaths occur in the developing world.  And even in sub-Saharan Africa, which has the highest MMR in the world, only 500 women out of 100,000 died from pregnancy related complications.

The key numbers to take away from this section on maternal and infant mortality rates are that in total 0.2 percent of women who get pregnant and do not murder their unborn children later die as a result of their pregnancies.  A total of 2 percent of infants worldwide will die before they reach their first birthday.   And statistically speaking the vast majority of these deaths that occur in both these categories occur in Africa. The saddest number of all these numbers is of course the worldwide purposeful murder of 22 percent of children in their mother’s womb by the act that modern civilization calls abortion.

The Societal Impact of Economic and Social Independence for Women

Another “loose end” we need to tie up has to do with women’s social and economic independence from men.  After all that is good thing, right?

For most of the history of mankind, with few exceptions, women were economically and socially tied to their fathers or their husbands and were considered the property of their fathers or husbands.  Women could not own property and if they did inherit property it would come under their husband’s authority upon marriage.  In divorce fathers retained full custody of the children.

The fact that women could not own property, could not easily divorce their husbands and when they did divorce, they had to leave without their children and without any property or income was a strong incentive for women to stay with their husbands.

This all changed in the mid-19th century with the rise of feminism.  It began with women suing in the courts for the right to own property as men did.  Then in the late 19th century the historic custom of fathers retaining full custody of their children was reversed and full custody was given to the mother.  Fathers did not gain back at least joint custody rights until almost a century later in 1960s.

Now the incentives that brought women to marriage to men, and kept women in marriage to men had been all but destroyed.

It was also during this time that women began to throw of the authority of their fathers in courting and began the new practice of “dating”.  Men and women entering marriage based on the historic principles of faith, duty, honor and economics gradually was replaced with men and women entering marriage simply for “love” – which was really just infatuation.

And since women had come to gain alimony, child support, and property rights there was little incentive for them to stay in marriage to a man once the infatuation wore off.   This caused divorce rates to sky rocket from 3 percent before the rise of feminism in the mid-19th century to 13 percent by the time woman’s suffrage was ratified in 1920 in the United States.

Anna Howard Shaw, one of the champions of first wave feminism made the following statement in the February 25th, 1915 edition of the New York Evening Post:

“I believe in woman suffrage, whether all women vote or no women vote; whether all women vote right or all women vote wrong; whether women will love their husbands after they vote or forsake them; whether they will neglect their children or never have any children at all.”

Anna Howard Shaw summed up the goals of the political feminists’ movements of the 19th and early 20th century.  The total liberation and independence of women from men no matter what the costs to society.  Country, marriage and motherhood and children could all be destroyed to meet their goals.  The only thing that mattered was women having complete and utter control of their lives.

And what cost did we pay as a nation? Well Anna Howard Shaw’s words came true.  Women gained the right to vote and even gained the right to force men to hire them for any positions they wanted.  And in 1973 they gained the right to murder their unborn children under the guise of total bodily autonomy.

The social and economic independence of women in America has directly led to rampant sexual immorality, the decline of marriage, over 60 million divorces and over 60 million abortions.

The Arguments Against the Marriage of Pubescent Women Are Faulty

Well it seems that in our effort to tie up loose ends regarding opposition to pubescent women marrying we have instead unraveled the entire ball of yarn.

Before I show how the arguments against pubescent women marrying are faulty, I want to explain some terminology I have been using.  The way we label something or someone can very much affect how we view that something or someone.  For instance, those of us who oppose abortion as a right for women call ourselves “prolife” while those who believe abortion is a right for women call themselves “prochoice”.   Prolife advocates such as myself call the child a “baby” from the moment it is conceived while Prochoice advocates will refer to the child based on his or her biological stages of development with such words as “zigote” or “embryo”  or “fetus” in an attempt to dehumanize the human being growing inside his or her mother’s womb.

In the same way when having this argument about the age of marriage for women those who oppose marriage for women before the age of 18 will call all marriage before the age of 18 “Child Marriage”.  But is 16 or 17-year-old female or male human being for that matter, a child? The answer biologically speaking is no.

Human beings go through a transition phase from child to adult and this transition phase is called puberty.  Children are human beings in the prepubescent stage of development.  Adolescents are human beings that are at some stage of puberty. When the changes of puberty are complete the human adolescent becomes a human adult.  Girls typically start puberty around the age of 11 while some start as early as 9 or 10 and they typically complete puberty by the age of 14. Boys start a little later than girls typically around the age of 12 and they finish puberty around the age of 16 or 17.

Those who say a female human being who has experienced the major changes of puberty which are the development of breasts, pubic hair and the start of menstruation is a child are stating a biological falsehood.  Such a female human being is no longer a child (prepubescent human being), but rather she is either an adolescent (pubescent human being) or an adult (postpubescent human being).

This is why I have consistently referred to this argument as one being about the “the marriage of pubescent women” because a female human being who has experienced the changes of puberty is no longer a child.

When we acknowledge the fact that worldwide a total of 0.2 percent of women die from pregnancy related deaths, and that includes pubescent mothers, then the even if they represent a higher proportion of that 0.2 percent it does not make a strong case against pubescent women marrying.  Instead we can respond with that fact that at least 99.8 percent of pubescent women worldwide will survive their pregnancies.

When we acknowledge the fact that only 2 percent of all infants worldwide die in the first year of their life and even if children from pubescent mothers make up more of that 2 percent than children from postpubescent women, we can rightly say pubescent mothers have at least a 98 percent chance of their children surviving their first year of life.  A difference somewhere within the 2 percent range between two groups of women having their children survive is not a strong argument against pubescent women marrying.

Some may respond that these are numbers that mix the developed world and undeveloped worlds.  But let me remind you of the WHO numbers which stated even in sub-Saharan Africa, which has the highest MMR in the world, only 500 women out of 100,000 died from pregnancy related complications in a given year over the last decade.

Then we come to other social reasons for opposition to marriage for pubescent women.

One of those reasons is that these pubescent women will have a “the loss of financial independence” from their husbands most likely because they do not finish high school and the college and get careers before marrying.

But based on the stats I just showed which correlate the granting of economic rights to women with the destruction of marriage by disincentivizing women to seek and stay in marriage to men is “the loss of financial independence” for women a bad thing? The answer if we believe that lasting marriages form the bedrock of a stable civilization must be NO.

And finally, what about the assertion that pubescent brides are more “susceptible to domestic violence, marital rapes and sexual abuse as they are not mature enough to protest and not independent enough to escape adverse situations in their conjugal life”? Is this a strong enough argument on its own for us to oppose pubescent women marrying?

Are there some men that truly do abuse their wives, whether they enter marriage as pubescent women or as postpubescent women? Absolutely.  But again, we must put things in perspective.  Just as we cannot toss out women getting pregnant because a tiny fraction of women may die from pregnancy so to, we cannot throw out marriage for pubescent women because of the sad fact that a higher fraction of a tiny percentage of pubescent women will be truly abused.

Now that I have shown the arguments against pubescent women marrying to be faulty and weak, we will now present strong arguments for the marriage of pubescent women.

Why We Should Support the Practice of Pubescent Marriage

I have previously shown from a biological perspective it is incorrect to refer to a human being that is going through puberty or one that has finished puberty as a child.  Therefore, it is utterly wrong to label it as “Child marriage” when a pubescent woman enters marriage.

Before the last century human societies recognized three primary social classes of human beings.  Men, Women and Children. Once children entered puberty, they were basically considered either men or women.  The concept of a “teenager” is a more recent invention over the last century.

Boys were considered men around the ages of 12 to 13 and this is why it was the norm for these young men to begin their trade in their early teen years so they could save their money, buy their own land and build a home.  Once they did this, usually by their late teens or early 20s, they would seek out a wife for marriage. For girls, as soon as they developed breasts and began menstruating, they were considered women and ready for marriage and child bearing.

Many will argue that just because a young woman is biologically ready for marriage and child bearing, does not mean she is mature enough mentally for marriage and child bearing.

So how do we answer the question of when a person is ready for marriage? Is it by looking to how civilizations have done things in the past? Is it by looking to current studies?

The answer, first and foremost for us as Christians, is to look to the Word of God.

“But if any man think that he behaveth himself uncomely toward his virgin, if she pass the flower of her age, and need so require, let him do what he will, he sinneth not: let them marry.”

1 Corinthians 7:36 (KJV)

The phrase “the flower of her age” refers to when a woman has her period.  The Apostle Paul is telling us here that the minimum of age of marriage is when a woman has her first period.

However, we must take the complete witness of the Scriptures together to determine when is the acceptable “time of love” for a young woman – as in marriage and sex.

“7 I have caused thee to multiply as the bud of the field, and thou hast increased and waxen great, and thou art come to excellent ornaments: thy breasts are fashioned, and thine hair is grown, whereas thou wast naked and bare.

8 Now when I passed by thee, and looked upon thee, behold, thy time was the time of love; and I spread my skirt over thee, and covered thy nakedness: yea, I sware unto thee, and entered into a covenant with thee, saith the Lord God, and thou becamest mine.”

Ezekiel 16:7-8 (KJV)

So, it is not until a young girl demonstrates all the signs of puberty, the growth of breasts, pubic hair and having a period that she is ready for marriage.  With most young women, their first period comes after the development of their breasts and pubic hair while in some rare cases the period may come first.  But the Scriptures show us that all three of these elements are required.

In fact, in another Scripture we read that if a woman was completely flat chested and had no breasts, she would have a difficult time marrying (even if she had her first period):

“We have a little sister, and she hath no breasts: what shall we do for our sister in the day when she shall be spoken for?”

Song of Solomon 8:8 (KJV)

The point here is that God tells us when a woman develops breasts, grows pubic hair and has her period she is ready for marriage by God’s law.

But we must also recognize that God gives a father discretion as to when his daughter is ready for marriage:

“Take ye wives, and beget sons and daughters; and take wives for your sons, and give your daughters to husbands, that they may bear sons and daughters; that ye may be increased there, and not diminished.”

Jeremiah 29:6 (KJV)

“16 And if a man entice a maid that is not betrothed, and lie with her, he shall surely endow her to be his wife. 17 If her father utterly refuse to give her unto him, he shall pay money according to the dowry of virgins.”

Exodus 22:16-17 (KJV)

The passages above show us that fathers have the responsibility to prepare their daughters for marriage and be looking for suitable husbands for their daughters while at the same time they have the right of refusal for their daughter for marriage as well.

Early Teen Women Are Very Fertile

Carolyn Butler wrote an article entitled “Ovaries have not adjusted to many women’s decision to delay having children” for the Washington Post back in 2010.  In that article she stated the following inconvenient biological facts for women:

The biological reality that female fertility peaks in the teens and early 20s can be difficult for many American women to swallow, as they delay childbirth further every year, according to the National Center for Health Statistics. In the District, the average age of initial childbirth was 26.5 years in 2006, up 5.5 years since 1970, the highest jump in the country…

While we may not be mature enough to conceive at a young age, nor should we, that is still when the body is most adept at conception and carrying a baby,” says Claire Whelan, program director of the American Fertility Association. “Our biological clock has not kept pace with our ability to prolong our life spans.” Stillman agrees, pointing out that research about advanced maternal age and motherhood today is clear: The older you get, the more difficult it is to get pregnant and the higher the chance of miscarriage, pregnancy problems such as gestational diabetes and hypertension, and chromosomal abnormalities such as Down syndrome, among other concerns…

“Society has changed, ” says Stillman, “but the ovaries will take another million years or two to catch up to that.””

Notice how she has to preface her acknowledgement of the biological reality of when women are “most adept at conception and carrying a baby” with her value judgment that “While we may not be mature enough to conceive at a young age, nor should we”.

As Christians we know that the Bible says in Genesis 1:27 that “male and female created he them”.  And we know God is not going to change a woman’s ovaries to match our societal changes.

Instead our society must turn back to God so that our society matches the way he designed us as males and females both physiologically and psychologically. And the way we begin that change is in one Christian home at time.

Early Teen Women Are More Moldable

In the Scriptures we read the following passage from the Book of Jeremiah:

“1 The word which came to Jeremiah from the Lord, saying,

2 Arise, and go down to the potter’s house, and there I will cause thee to hear my words. 3 Then I went down to the potter’s house, and, behold, he wrought a work on the wheels. 4 And the vessel that he made of clay was marred in the hand of the potter: so he made it again another vessel, as seemed good to the potter to make it.

5 Then the word of the Lord came to me, saying, 6 O house of Israel, cannot I do with you as this potter? saith the Lord. Behold, as the clay is in the potter’s hand, so are ye in mine hand, O house of Israel.”

Jeremiah 18:1-6 (KJV)

In the above passage God is speaking to Israel as his wife.  The phrase “O house of Israel” is used in other passages like this one below when God refers to Israel as his wife and he as her husband:

“Surely as a wife treacherously departeth from her husband, so have ye dealt treacherously with me, O house of Israel, saith the Lord.”

Jeremiah 3:20 (KJV)

Just as God sought to mold his wife Israel to be the person, he wanted her to be, so to for a marriage to be successful a woman must be very moldable just like clay in the hands of a potter.

When women are in their early teens, they typically are more moldable but as they get older into their late teens and especially early 20s, they become much harder to mold or change in their person and habits.

And make no mistake this is EXACTLY why most people today oppose women marrying very young because they know they are so impressionable or moldable at that age.  They don’t want men being able to mold young women so they want to delay marriage as a long as possible pushing it into the early and mid-20s.

Christians who follow this false philosophy that young women need “find themselves” and “be their own person” before marriage are going against God’s design.

Remember that God says marriage is a picture of Christ and the Church.  Does Christ mold his church? You bet he does.  And he tells men to love their wives as he does:

“25 Husbands, love your wives, even as Christ also loved the church, and gave himself for it; 26 That he might sanctify and cleanse it with the washing of water by the word, 27 That he might present it to himself a glorious church, not having spot, or wrinkle, or any such thing; but that it should be holy and without blemish.”

Ephesians 5:25-27 (KJV)

We are often told today that if a man attempts to mold or change his wife’s behavior at all that he is “controlling” and this bad.  We are told that if a man truly loves his wife, he won’t try to change anything about her.

Well I can tell you based on the authority of the Scriptures above that if a man does not attempt to mold and shape his wife to present her to himself and to God as a glorious wife in the same way Christ does his church then he is not loving his wife as Christ loves the church.

And yes, it takes a sacrifice on our part as men and courage on our part as men to “rebuke and chasten” (Revelation 3:19) our wives as Christ does his churches. But when done in the correct spirit, such rebuke and chastening by husbands is called “love”.

Conclusion

Rebekah so here is the answer to your question – “Would society be better if we returned to the standard that girls could marry as soon as they menstruated and were capable of having kids?”

The answer first from the Bible is “YES”.  But the like many other times we can see how God’s design plays out when we follow it and also when we disobey it.  No one can argue with the cold hard facts that giving women independence from men in general and their fathers and husbands in particular has been good for the institution of marriage which God designed.

By taking away women’s dependence on men we have allowed women to dominate marriage and our society.  Society is now ordered around how people feel rather than duty to God, family and country.

And the invention of the “teenager” as an extension of childhood has not been good for our society.  It has led to rampant immorality and a complete lack of responsibility among our young people today.

I don’t think you were actually asking if your husband could do this but just if society would be better if we all turned back to this custom of marriage for young women.

However, if your daughters have demonstrated the signs God says that mark “the time of love” for a woman in that they have developed breasts, pubic hair and have begun menstruating and if your husband feels they are mature enough and ready for marriage there would be no sin in allowing them to marry.

Believe it or not there are still 15 states that allow marriage below the age of 14:

 California
 Colorado
 Idaho
 Louisiana
 Maine
 Massachusetts
 Michigan
 Mississippi
 Nevada
 New Mexico
 Oklahoma
 Pennsylvania
 Washington
 West Virginia
 Wyoming

Also, several states allow 14, and 15-year old people to marry as well.

You can find the complete list of marriage by age by state here:

https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Age_of_marriage_in_the_United_States

Answering the Scoffers

One of my favorite scoffers, Suzanne Titkemeyer, wrote a piece the other day about my review of the Handmaids Tale.   I always chuckle a little when I read her stuff.

I will cover just a few areas that I think apply to this article in regards to the age of marriage.

Suzanne wrote:

“Why is it always these creeps, like Vaughn Ohlman,imaging young burgeoning breasts and periods as a marker for readiness? Notice that none of them view young boys of that age as ready for marriage. When they talk of men marrying it’s always men over the age of 21, while saddling them with a much too young girl.”

Suzanne, it is not me imaging breasts and periods as a marker for readiness, but rather the word of God which clearly states it as I showed above from Ezekiel 16:7-8 and 1 Corinthians 7:36.  You may reject the Bible but it is my basis for truth.

And before I knew and understood these Scriptures and studied the history of the world, biology and marriage I probably would have agreed with you that early teens is too young for marriage for women.  But back then I would have been going by what you are – my feelings and my culture. Instead of looking at marriage first through the lenses of the Bible, then history and biology.  All of which support young marriage for women.

Also, on your view of boys.  I don’t think they have to be over 21, although I think in most cases it would be wiser for them to wait.  Why? Because they have to lead a woman and their family and they have to be able to provide for and protect their family.  Especially on the provision front, for most young men it takes well into their early or mid-20s until they are ready to provide for a family.   My 19-year-old son who is plumber is an exception.  He makes over 60 K a year and could support a family.  But he has to get some other things in line first.

I know you struggle with this concept, but young men and young women are different. They are designed by God for different roles.  A young woman does not have to lead a home or provide for one.  She simply has to manage it, therefore she can marry much younger than a man.  Besides it is a biological fact as I showed above the early teens to the early 20s are “when the body is most adept at conception and carrying a baby”.  I also showed that studies arguing for higher pregnancy related deaths or other health problems are using statistically insignificant differences between pubescent mothers and postpubescent  mothers.

Suzanne wrote:

“In the United States this age can come at a very young time in a girl’s life. Menstruation ages have dropped, meaning what Larry is proposing here is that girls as young as 9 could be married.”

No not really.  I have said on multiple occasions that I like the Jewish rule of minimum age of 12.  The truth is that is extremely rare for a 9-year-old to have a period but then you are leaving out several other key factors in order to build your straw-man argument.  I said the minimum age of marriage requires ALL of the following things – not just a girl having her period. She must have developed breasts, pubic hair, had a period AND her father must determine she is ready.

Suzanne wrote:

“My own cycle started at 11 years old, and I can tell you I was nowhere near ready to marry. I was still playing with my Barbies, riding my horse, going to Camp Fire Girls meetings, and giggling over how cute Donny Osmond was. My only adult actions and responsibilities revolved around caring for my horse.

Little girls should be free to ride their horses, or play with their dolls and coloring books, not forced into lifetime relationships and sex.  We’ve talked about this so much here that I’m not even going to cite the statistics again that show how early marriage harms girls in every way, physically, emotionally, financially.”

Do you know why you were no nowhere near ready to marry at age 11 including manage a home and take care of children? Because you were raised in a culture that has vastly extended childhood far beyond what cultures in the past did.  If you were raised in pre-modern times, especially medieval or ancient times you absolutely would have been preparing for marriage at 11 and most likely be married by 12 or 13.

You see that is one of the many differences between your world view and mine.  You believe the purpose of little girls and by extension women is to live for themselves.  Have fun and do whatever makes you happy (at a particular moment, because we know that changes every five minutes).

But other people who believe the Bible is the inerrant Word of God, such as myself, believe we were put here for more than riding horses and playing with toys.  We believe life is about duty and honor and serving God.  Sure, we can have happiness along the way, but if that is our central focus, we will not serve God.

And speaking of happiness.  We understand a truth that utterly escapes most secularists and you as well.  We understand that happiness is not simply a feeling, but it is also a choice.  We can choose to be happy in whatever circumstances life brings us.  This is special kind of joy that few people know or understand. We can choose to let God and his Word lead our hearts, instead of letting our hearts lead us.

I pray one day you will come to know these truths and accept Christ and his Word as they are and not as you would have them be.