A Clarification on Fornication

Just to be clear.

Readership: Men
Theme: Overcoming Obstacles
Length: 1,200 words
Reading Time: 4 minutes

Introduction

Concerning the addictive habit of squipping, Caterpillar345 wrote,

“In my teens/early 20’s, I was so “afraid” of sinning by fornicating that it seemed the only outlet for my sexual desire was these two vices [i.e. p0rn and spanking the monkey]. It seemed like the lesser of two evils, so to speak. In reality, it just meant I stayed away from opportunities to interact with women, didn’t develop myself socially, and developed a sense of pride in the fact that I wasn’t fornicating and had better things to do (i.e. school, career) which probably just made me come across as an @sshole.”

[…]

“It seems to me, in a strange way, that it might actually be “better” (though not encouraged) to sin by fornicating with a real woman than to dissipate myself online and by myself. (I think Jack and Deti have alluded to this in the past.)”

I need to clarify what has been written in the past about fornication.

It is not always called out as a reminder that while certain paths are better than others, neither one is a good one to take. I would be concerned if a younger man stumbled across a passage that discusses the pros and cons of masturbation, fornication, etc. without realizing the context is a discussion of which is the better of two bad options.

On this blog, there have been three contexts in which fornication has been presented or described in what could be interpreted by readers as a “necessary evil” or a “lesser of two evils”.

Running the Gauntlet

One context is that of “running the gauntlet”, in which there is an unspoken assumption that sexual relations should commence within the first few “dates”, and when it doesn’t, then the relationship is terminated. This is usually initiated by the female, but many PUAs, chads, and cads have the same attitude. One of the implications of this is that people must first successfully navigate the SMP before they can become “eligible” for the MMP. It is also noted that being sexually active magnifies preselection and attracts women. This phenomenon occurs within the secular mating market, which is a gynocentric context in which women have preeminent control. However, it is also prevalent among Christians and in the church.  This paradigm still continues, but it appears to be slowly losing steam and is being replaced by either hookup culture or abstinence, with neither leading to marriage, generally speaking.

The following posts discussed this phenomenon in detail. Many other posts have made references to “running the gauntlet”.

Purity Culture

The second context is that of Purity Culture, where pseudo-sex and technical-virginity are touted as virtuous, merely because it avoids full P in V intercourse. In this setting, the “Sexual Prosperity Gospel”, which is presumed to be attained by sexual continence, is more or less emphasized as the most crucial aspect of Christianity. Adherents learn to base their Christian identity, not on Christ, the grace of God, or the forgiveness of sin, but on this so called “purity” instead. The ascetic ontology of this legalistic paradigm is riddled with shame. Studies have found that a vast majority of pledgers recanted within 5 years. Many of these left the church and engaged in illicit sex, and those who later married say that it brought shame and remorse into their marriages. Fornication is a common theme among many ex-adherents’ accounts, in which it is commonly said that they never identified with their own sexuality, nor realized their error, until they let go of their psychological emphasis on purity, usually through fornication. This was not a cultural phenomenon, but occurs entirely within churches. Interestingly, Purity Culture went hand in hand with the Feminist Life Script, making it all the more d@mning.

Like many Christian Gen Xers, Jack, NovaSeeker, and Thedeti experienced Purity Culture firsthand, so many of my/our writings are peppered with nuances of this. I wrote an entire series on the Purity Movement, but here are a few posts that address this particular aspect of fornication.

The subjective viewpoint cited by Caterpillar above would fall into this category.

Experiencing God’s Grace

The third context is a subjective account of experiencing humility and God’s grace through fornication. I wrote about this in at least one post, but have alluded to this experience in many others.

Epilogue

As we have seen here and elsewhere, some readers will jump on the very mention of fornication and interpret this as a free-wheeling recommendation of the same. I suspect that one’s tendency to identify the above writings as a full endorsement of fornication is either a fundamental error of attribution or psychological projection.

If readers care to review these posts, you’ll find that I/we don’t encourage Christians to engage in willful fornication, nor do I/we advocate fornication as a Christian practice. Instead, these writings are (1) observations of cultural phenomenon, or (2) case studies of redemption and God’s grace, or (3) subjective thoughts or impressions. To offer a complete philosophical analysis, fornication has been presented as one possible experience within these contexts, but it is not presented as a goal that Christians should aim for, because that would be a serious error.

As a warning to readers, thinking of abstinence vs. fornication, etc. as an “option” arises from a Gnostic, self-deterministic point of view. In reality, most people do not consider the choices or consequences at all, they just run on autopilot. But if this blog helps men become more aware of their own autopilot, think things through more clearly, and understand their own situation such that they’re able to make better informed choices and grow in their faith, then progress has been made.

Outside of all this talk and philosophizing, it is left to the reader to consider all the information (the Bible foremost), get in touch with their consciences, figure out their missions, and make their own decisions in life. It should not be surprising that some people will engage in fornication, but again, this approach is not emphasized nor encouraged for Christians.

For this is the will of God, your sanctification: that you should abstain from sexual immorality; that each of you should know how to possess his own vessel in sanctification and honor, not in passion of lust, like the Gentiles who do not know God; that no one should take advantage of and defraud his brother in this matter, because the Lord is the avenger of all such, as we also forewarned you and testified.  For God did not call us to uncleanness, but in holiness.  Therefore he who rejects this does not reject man, but God, who has also given us His Holy Spirit.

1 Thessalonians 4:3-8 (NKJV)

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About Jack

Jack is a world traveling artist, skilled in trading ideas and information, none of which are considered too holy, too nerdy, nor too profane to hijack and twist into useful fashion. Sigma Frame Mindsets and methods for building and maintaining a masculine Frame
This entry was posted in Adultery and Fornication, Attitude, Communications, Desire, Discerning Lies and Deception, Discernment, Wisdom, Discipline, Enduring Suffering, Gnosticism, Holding Frame, Introspection, Legalism, Masturbation, Models of Failure, Psychology, Purity Culture, Purpose, Running the Gauntlet, Self-Concept, Self-Control. Bookmark the permalink.

51 Responses to A Clarification on Fornication

  1. Oscar says:

    Speaking of male rationalization hamsters, there’s plenty of rationalization of fornication in the Christian androsphere.

    If men want to rationalize fornication, fine. Not my life, not my problem. I just don’t want to hear any whining about sluts, harlots or whores.

    Liked by 3 people

    • Jack says:

      @Oscar,

      “If men want to rationalize fornication, fine. Not my life, not my problem. I just don’t want to hear any whining about sluts, harlots or whores.”

      I think your underlying and understated point is that fornication involves dealing with s1uts, harlots, and wh0res, so it is to be expected that a man will have to deal with a lot of drama and have his heart broken, and that this should not come as any surprise to the man.

      Liked by 1 person

    • thedeti says:

      Most women – including Christian women – will be sluts, harlots, and whores for the right man. All you have to be is sexually and physically attractive enough to provoke a woman’s sexual response.

      Liked by 1 person

  2. jorgen says:

    It depends if adultery is forgiveable or not. Because if you’re fornicating, then its very likely you’ll sleep with another man’s wife who is lying about her marital status (well, as an adult anyway, maybe not likely for teenage guys who fornicate). Tertullian in his treatise (I think On Modesty) seems to believe adultery is not forgiveable (after all, it brought a death penalty in the OT, so technically anyone who does it should be dead, but aren’t due to Christians not stoning). In the Dhammapada, Buddha says, “He who sleeps with another man’s wife goes to hell.” Not a word is said of possible forgiveness (despite what modern leftist “buddhists” might do to throw that in, having borrowed it from Protestantism). So it depends on how permissive the religious system is toward adultery, whether fornicating is a better idea than jerking it — fornicating can lead to marriage while jerking it cannot, if that is the only concern (but that’s probably not the only concern).

    Like

    • jorgen says:

      It’s also said somewhere in the Theravada Buddhist canon that a man who commits adultery goes to hell, and when he gets out (because in Buddhism, it’s a reincarnated destination rather than an eternal one), then he goes through various animal lives, and finally, when he returns to humanity, has to be born as a woman, and if (s)he can live as a woman without committing adultery then (s)he can be reborn as a man in the next life, but if, as a woman, he commits adultery, it’s right back to hell. And of course, to pursue the final goal of enlightenment you want to be a man. It’s an interesting idea whether entirely realistic or not. It would mean that a bunch of the modern whores are reincarnations of men who comitted adultery a few lives back and are failing at their probation as women.

      Like

      • Sharkly says:

        Jack,
        My experience in South Korea with the Buddhists there (1976-1982) was quite different. The Buddhist religion was low-key, lacked love, and many Koreans were bored of it. Christianity was gaining formerly Buddhist followers quite rapidly there back in those days. While Buddhist monks isolated themselves and wandered the lonely hills quietly muttering their mantras, Korean pastors pounded their pulpits and hollered out impassioned messages. Many Koreans said, “Wow! They’ve got a religion they get excited about.”

        According to Wikipedia, Christians currently outnumber Buddhists there.

        Like

      • Jack says:

        Sharkly,
        That’s great! South Korea has come a long way since the early 80s, and I’ll attribute much of that to Christian influences in general.

        In Taiwan, pastors expressing passionate conviction in their sermons would not have the same effect, because the Taiwanese deeply value humility, serenity, and shalom.

        Liked by 1 person

    • Jack says:

      Interesting conjectures.

      Since I’ve lived in Taiwan for many years, I’ve become rather familiar with Buddhism. This Buddhist teaching reveals why Buddhist women (most of those I’ve met) are rather well behaved and loyal to their husbands. In terms of social stability and personal conduct, Buddhism is rather effective — the fact that it has endured for over 2,500 years, even longer than Christianity, is a testament to this. I’ve known of a few Buddhist women who have committed adultery, and they either turn to Christianity or else they become completely maddened with various psychoses. In Christianity, rightly understood, one’s conscience, discernment, and sense of guilt should inform a person of what is right or wrong before one gets too far into it; but instead, people in Asia usually interpret Christianity as a very permissive, yet very demanding religion. (For example, Jesus forgave prostitutes, thieves, tax collectors, and those who betrayed Him, but He also asked them to forgive others, give all their possessions to the poor, go the extra mile, turn the other cheek, lay down their lives and sacrifice themselves for the good of others, and so on.). For these reasons, Christianity is seen as a religion for the morally corrupt in Asia. IOW, it’s very hard for them to get past the “salvation by works” mentality. However, Buddhists also believe that the Way of Christ and the cross bypasses all future reincarnations and leads one directly to Nirvana (heaven). (Yes, Buddhists “believe” in Jesus.) There are some homeless people here who have done just that (giving away all their possessions, sacrificing their lives, etc.), and yes, everyone in society, including their own families, despises and rejects them, just as Christ predicted.

      “So it depends on how permissive the religious system is toward adultery, whether fornicating is a better idea than jerking it — fornicating can lead to marriage while jerking it cannot…”

      If fornication leads to marriage, then that would be an expression of God’s grace. The thing is, if one willingly enters into fornication with the expectation of receiving grace, then it is more elusive; and if found, the consequences are more profound and surfeited. Grace has to “catch one by surprise” to be truly experienced as grace. IOW, grace has to come by God’s volition, not by our rebelliousness.

      Liked by 2 people

    • Oscar says:

      “It depends if adultery is forgiveable or not.”

      The Bible makes it very clear that God forgives adultery.

      1 Corinthians 6:9-11 (NKJV)
      Do you not know that the unrighteous will not inherit the kingdom of God? Do not be deceived. Neither fornicators, nor idolaters, nor adulterers, nor homosexuals, nor sodomites, 10 nor thieves, nor covetous, nor drunkards, nor revilers, nor extortioners will inherit the kingdom of God. 11 And such were some of you. But you were washed, but you were sanctified, but you were justified in the name of the Lord Jesus and by the Spirit of our God.

      “In the Dhammapada, Buddha says, “He who sleeps with another man’s wife goes to hell.” Not a word is said of possible forgiveness.”

      What Buddha said about Hell is interesting, and irrelevant.

      Liked by 1 person

  3. Jack says:

    I’ve been contemplating Caterpillar’s original statement some more.

    “It seems to me, in a strange way, that it might actually be “better” (though not encouraged) to sin by fornicating with a real woman than to dissipate myself online and by myself.”

    I think the crux of the issue here is that there is a very real fear of fornicating (or of sin in general). As Christians, we believe that this is a rather healthy fear. But at some point, the fear overwhelms and suffocates faith. Fear, in this sense, is not the fear of God, but it is the doubt/unbelief that Jesus has forgiven one’s sins and whether Christ’s sacrifice is sufficient to save. Hence, it is then believed necessary to “save one’s self” by avoiding such sins. The result is legalism. I’ve experienced this myself.

    It is in this context that a quote from Martin Luther begins to make sense.

    “Be a sinner and sin boldly, but believe and rejoice in Christ even more boldly.”
    ~ Martin Luther

    Commentators have interpreted “sin boldly” to mean fully facing the truth of our frailty, like Jesus faced death in order to destroy it. Alternately, other scholars have said “sin boldly” means to surrender ourselves in humility to Christ’s saving power so that we might overcome sin.

    To me, “sin boldly” is not to be taken literally, but is merely a reframe. It is a bastard** attitude that is helpful in facing and overcoming one’s fears of one’s own sinfulness. It is a self-reassurance that Christ is sufficient to save. In practice and in my experience, when one steps out in faith and comes to the point where the opportunity to sin becomes a real possibility (not just an armchair theological, doctrinal, or philosophical exercise, nor a figment of the fearful imagination), the presence of God is there to hold one back from transgression. That is the point where one meets God in real life.

    ** A bastard file is a carpenters tool for rough shaping — an analogy to Jesus shaping our souls.

    Liked by 1 person

    • Sharkly says:

      The fear of God is the beginning of wisdom. To fear God and flee from evil is wisdom enacted.

      To understand many of Martin Luther’s sayings you’d have to have been there, and be German, to know when he was joking. German humor doesn’t always translate well into other cultures. So many of the quotes people use to paint Martin Luther as a crazy heretic are Germanic jokes that didn’t translate well. Luther was brave, bold, brash, and joking more often than he was serious. Luther was furious when his local ruler quit executing all adulterers, and warned it was a slippery slope to moral anarchy. So I don’t see him as an advocate for sexual sin. He also wrote that frigid wives, who refuse their husbands sex, should be executed.

      Liked by 2 people

      • Jack says:

        “The fear of God is the beginning of wisdom. To fear God and flee from evil is wisdom enacted.”

        Yes. But when one doesn’t know God intimately, this passage is received as “The fear of sin and God’s wrath is the beginning of wisdom”, which completely misses both God and wisdom altogether. Wisdom can only be found in the presence of God.

        Like

      • Sharkly says:

        I’m going to disagree. “The fear of sin and God’s wrath is the beginning of wisdom”, seems exactly right. I’ve got a menacing fear of God’s wrath, and by the grace of God, it kept me from fornication. What have you got? Some closer relationship with God that allowed you to sin? LOL! That word “fear” is not a mistranslation. You’d be wiser to be more mindful of and fearful about your coming judgement.

        Philippians 2:12 (NKJV)
        Wherefore, my beloved, as ye have always obeyed, not as in my presence only, but now much more in my absence, work out your own salvation with fear and trembling.

        1 Peter 1:17 (KJV)
        And if ye call on the Father, who without respect of persons judgeth according to every man’s work, pass the time of your sojourning here in fear:

        The whole reason our churches are an apostate abomination is because neither the leaders nor the laity truly fear God.

        Psalm 36:1-3 (NET)
        1 An evil man is rebellious to the core. He does not fear God, 2 for he is too proud to recognize and give up his sin. 3 The words he speaks are sinful and deceitful; he does not care about doing what is wise and right.

        Those preachers who teach people not to truly fear God, are not only false teachers, but they are snatching away even the very beginning of wisdom from their flock, lest they should really fear God and begin to turn away from their wickedness.

        Churchians often claim, “I’ve got a super close relationship with God so I don’t need to fear Him”. LOL! They don’t fear Him only because they don’t even know Him. His name is Jealous. (Exodus 34:14) And he is furious with the great whoring of the church.

        Malachi 2:17 (NASB)
        You have wearied the Lord with your words. Yet you say, “How have we wearied Him?” In that you say, “Everyone who does evil is good in the sight of the Lord, and He delights in them,” or, “Where is the God of justice?”

        Don’t presume upon God’s forgiveness. There is a reason God wants all adulterers and some fornicators put to death. He doesn’t owe anyone forgiveness or even time to repent.

        Proverbs 16:4 (KJV)
        The Lord hath made all things for himself: yea, even the wicked for the day of evil.

        Like

      • Jack says:

        Sharkly,

        “I’m going to disagree. “The fear of sin and God’s wrath is the beginning of wisdom”, seems exactly right. I’ve got a menacing fear of God’s wrath, and by the grace of God, it kept me from fornication. What have you got? Some closer relationship with God that allowed you to sin? LOL That word “fear” is not a mistranslation. You’d be wiser to be more mindful of and fearful about your coming judgement.”

        You’re focused on sin, not on faith. If you have “a menacing fear of God’s wrath”, and are “fearful about your coming judgment”, then you haven’t made peace with God.

        Liked by 1 person

      • Oscar says:

        “The fear of sin and God’s wrath is the beginning of wisdom”, seems exactly right.”

        I’m going to agree with Sharkly here, and emphasize that the fear of God is the beginning of wisdom. In other words, it doesn’t stop at the fear of God. The fear of God’s wrath leads us to seek a solution, which leads us to the inescapable conclusion that we need a savior, which leads us to mercy, grace, and love.

        But no one arrives at mercy, grace, or love without beginning with the fear of God.

        Liked by 3 people

      • Sharkly says:

        I think my perspective is like the apostles described here:

        2 Corinthians 5:7-11 (KJV)
        7 (For we walk by faith, not by sight:) 8 We are confident, I say, and willing rather to be absent from the body, and to be present with the Lord. 9 Wherefore we labor, that, whether present or absent, we may be accepted of Him. 10 For we must all appear before the judgment seat of Christ; that every one may receive the things done in his body, according to that he hath done, whether it be good or bad. 11 Knowing therefore the terror of the Lord, we persuade men; but we are made manifest unto God; and I trust also are made manifest in your consciences.

        Even though they lived by faith, they worked out the salvation they knew of with such great faith by laboring to be acceptable to God. And even though, of all men, they should have reason for confidence, yet they who knew most directly about God, knew the terror of the Lord.

        Decreasing the fear of the Lord will decrease people’s laboring to be accepted by Him. And that unwary stance underwrites the body of Christ developing a laissez-faire acceptance of all manner of sins within the church, which leads to Christian churches that effectively practice lawlessness, supposedly everything will just get forgiven. And for that lawless practice Christ has plainly told us He will cast many into hell who call Him Lord and claim to have done all manner of wonderful works in His name.

        Like

      • Jack says:

        Sharkly, Oscar,
        OK, let’s return to the original context of Purity Culture. According to your view, the adherents’ fear of sin and God’s wrath should have led to greater wisdom, mercy, grace, and love. But instead, it only kept its proponents out of sin for a time, and shame appeared as an alternative motivation. Within 5 years, the majority recanted and turned to fornication (at a higher incidence than secular culture), and some abandoned their faith altogether. How then would you explain this phenomenon? Why didn’t it lead to more wisdom and the knowledge of God? Or maybe it did, in spite of their backslidings?

        Like

      • Sharkly says:

        I’m not very familiar with “Purity Culture”, I first heard of it just a few years ago here in the manosphere. I assume the problem is that those folks don’t truly fear God, and instead of being taught to fear God, they are taught to fear fornication or to fear spoiling themselves. So once they get past their disruptive fear of sex and they do defile themselves, its Katy bar the door, all their restraints are effectively gone.

        I personally found that a grave fear of God kept me morally upright while not inducing any sexual hang-ups or dysfunctional sexual thinking that could later degrade marital sex for me. And just for your reference sake, due to my nasty divorce, I was run through two very lengthy series of tests and series of interviews regarding my psycho-sexual development and status by two different doctors and their conclusions were that my sexual development was normative, and I have no personality disorders or abnormal thinking. And, in fact, my sex drive was listed as “robust”. So I of all people surely must have endured great temptation to be sexually active prior to marriage, according to the experts.

        I really think there is an inspired reason that “the fear of the Lord” was peppered throughout the Bible. It is no wonder that so many who were wrongly taught not to fear God, but to fear sex, end up failing catastrophically, and then often have damaging mental sex pathologies. SRSLY! It’s like our Creator knows what’s best for us and He wrote a book on it.

        Liked by 1 person

      • Jack says:

        Sharkly,

        “I’m not very familiar with “Purity Culture”…”

        So for the past 47 hours, you’ve written 1,045 words to criticize my arguments when you don’t even understand the context? SMH

        “I assume the problem is that those folks don’t truly fear God, and instead of being taught to fear God, they are taught to fear fornication or to fear spoiling themselves.”

        Now you’re starting to understand what I was saying about the problem of “fearing sin and the wrath of God.” You can pick that apart or rephrase it if you don’t like the wording, but the context makes all the difference as to the meaning.

        “So once they get past their disruptive fear of sex and they do defile themselves, its Katy bar the door, all their restraints are effectively gone.”

        I don’t know what “Katy bar” is, but you’re getting the picture.

        “It is no wonder that so many who were wrongly taught not to fear God, but to fear sex, end up failing catastrophically, and then often have damaging mental sex pathologies.”

        Yes, but the thing you’re missing is that the adherents did not only have a fear of sex, per se. They were genuinely afraid of sexual sin, offending God, and the possible consequences (viz. the wrath of God) as well.

        IMO, the reason Purity Culture failed is NOT because its adherents did not fear God. In fact, most of them had enough fear of God to motivate them to abstain for a few years. The reason it failed is because for many people, celibacy is unsustainable over the long term, especially during the 18-25 age range. This is why St. Paul urged such people to marry. Purity Culture failed because it didn’t provide a clear path towards marriage within a very short time frame (2-3 years at most). It also failed because girls were being bombarded with other messages that were contradictory to the purpose of chastity and the goal of marriage; messages such as “Don’t settle for second best”, “You’re too young to get married just yet”, the Feminist Life Script, traveling (e.g. mission trips), pursuing education, establishing “careers”, and toying with various other aspirations before settling down. Some cultural messages like FOMO and YOLO stoked even more fuel to the flames of their desire. Another reason it failed is because the adherents were competing in the larger SMP/MMP, and not just in their own MMP within the church, and they did this while abstaining (presumably), which put them at a severe disadvantage. All in all, the adherents were saving themselves for marriage, but marriage never came, so eventually anger, disappointment, frustration, and regret set in, and then their unfulfilled anticipations unfurled catastrophically outside of marriage, often times against their will.

        Liked by 2 people

      • Red Pill Apostle says:

        Jack – One of the structural failings of the purity culture, that I strongly believe contributed to it’s utter failure, is that adherents perseverated on sex and did so at a time of life when drive was at it’s apex. People even wore rings that reminded them to not have sex, because sex is sooooo great that it’s worth the wait, which really just ended up bringing the ideas of sex and how good it is to the forefront of their consciousness. It’s like telling a man who is well into a long fast not to think about the perfectly cooked steak waiting for him at the end of the fast. It’s all he’ll dream about.

        Liked by 3 people

  4. Scott says:

    I hope everyone has a great Easter on the Gregorian calendar.

    We have one more week.

    Liked by 4 people

  5. Interestingly, I spoke to another young man about mine and Cat’s age the day before this post, so great timing on your part, Jack.

    During our conversation we both agreed with Cat in our understanding of PMO – deliberately avoiding fornication via release “elsewhere” was considered the morally superior option as you are only sinning against yourself. However, Cat’s concern echoed ours is his synopsis of the consequences – shucking the corn doesn’t really appear to be the better option vs. actual shagging as you’re just damaging yourself more deeply than you might be if you went out and fornicated. Bloggers on this site seen to imply that the latter is the better option, but are we really trying to encourage this? PMO vs. fornication as the only options is a false dichotomy! Jack eloquently posted about other above, but all 3 of the ones mentioned still have issues. Options #1 and #3 (Gauntlet & God’s Grace) still leave you with the ultimate problem that engaging in pre-martial relations, which is clearly called out as sinful. Option #2 (Purity culture), if it doesn’t cause you to devolve into #1 or #3, may cause you to walk away from the faith entirely. We’ve seen this time and time again courtesy of Dalrock and others.

    My point is this: None of the options presented above (PMO, fornication via the gauntlet, fornication via God’s grace, or purity culture) are really the answer, but we don’t really delve into how to invest in the best path (find your God-given mission, live it out, and search for a wife as a helpmate to said mission) in enough detail. For those of us who are single and haven’t given into the temptation of cashing out early via the horizontal tango and/or long-term corn shucking, it would be nice to hear from those that walked the same path and exited successfully into a Godly marriage. I’d argue that while the rarest, this path is the most profitable and a Q&A with such an “investor” would be immensely valuable to this community, particularly if we want to teach our future children to follow in their footsteps. I’m still trying to find a worthwhile startup to invest in myself, so I obviously am not it, but getting knowledge from someone who did find a decent helpmate and didn’t have to run the gauntlet or experience God’s grace would be encouraging to us all.

    Liked by 2 people

    • Jack says:

      FrankChalmers,

      You’ve written a pretty nice summary of the difficulties. I am glad to hear that you’re discussing these matters with other men.

      “Bloggers on this site seen to imply that the latter [fornication] is the better option, but are we really trying to encourage this?”

      Fornication happens so frequently, even among Christians, that it needs to be examined objectively. It is not my intention to encourage fornication, but whenever I examine any wrong behaviors, I run the risk of giving the impression that it is encouraged. I’ve found it very challenging to present an objective analysis and let the facts speak for themselves, without giving the impression of condoning one path or another, because readers will invariably ascribe their own biases and meanings into anything I might write. It is my hope that after exploring such topics, readers would come to the correct conclusions, but I know that will not always be the case.

      “PMO vs. fornication as the only options is a false dichotomy!”

      That’s right. These are just the most prevalent courses of action. It might help us to clearly understand the causes, necessary conditions, and motivations. At least we’ll know what we’re dealing with.

      “For those of us who are single and haven’t given into the temptation of cashing out early via the horizontal tango and/or long-term corn shucking, it would be nice to hear from those that walked the same path and exited successfully into a Godly marriage. […] …getting knowledge from someone who did find a decent helpmate and didn’t have to run the gauntlet or experience God’s grace would be encouraging to us all.”

      I agree. As you noted, there are not many men who have walked the straight and narrow and arrived in a good marriage, and of those men fewer still would show up here and share their views. There have been a small number of men who have weathered the storm well and have offered their insights here, but their assessments generally fall into one of two categories: either (1) they don’t really know how they did it, or (2) they chalk it up to God’s grace. Moreover, both types have not offered much inspiration to those men who are struggling.

      Although this is not actionable knowledge, I do believe God recognizes our sufferings, and that this present condition cannot endure much longer. I realize that the change begins with men like us — men who will acknowledge their problems, work to find answers, and help other men who are struggling with the same issues.

      Liked by 2 people

      • “It is not my intention to encourage fornication, but whenever I examine any wrong behaviors, I run the risk of giving the impression that it is encouraged.”

        I can understand that. It’s a tricky subject to discuss in a written medium where words can be misinterpreted and simplifying topics like these to a 1,500 word article is not easy. There is a reason I consume the content, not create it, and for that I’m grateful for you and others on this site.

        “I’ve found it very challenging to present an objective analysis and let the facts speak for themselves, without giving the impression of condoning one path or another.”

        It should be assumed that your readers are all reasonably intelligent, free-thinking men here that can come to our own conclusions, so I appreciate the respect you show us in that. I wouldn’t be commenting here if I didn’t think the blog didn’t actually promote beneficial values and edify men about the relationship our faith has with the SMP. My main concern is more that it is not always called out as a reminder that certain paths are better than others, but not good ones to take. Maybe I am simply too swayable in my opinions, but I would be concerned if a younger man stumbles upon an article that discusses PMO vs. fornication without the proper context that we’re discussing the better of two bad options.

        “Men who have walked the straight and narrow and arrived in a good marriage… (1) don’t really know how they did it, or (2) they chalk it up to God’s grace.”

        This is an excellent point. Non-red-pilled men who have arrived at a good marriage are less likely to find something like this site because they aren’t trying to solve the problems that we discuss here. They haven’t ever considered looking for it because they naturally do it. It’s like the past article that said the best Christian wives aren’t on OLD apps — they simply don’t need them.

        “I realize that the change begins with… men who will acknowledge their problems, work to find answers, and help other men who are struggling with the same issues.”

        Amen brother. My hope is that someone like Cat will be a success story who in 20 years time will still be around on these sites helping the next generation because he “did it right” and was blessed with a good marriage as a result.

        Liked by 2 people

      • Jack says:

        “My main concern is more that it is not always called out as a reminder that certain paths are better than others, but not good ones to take. […] I would be concerned if a younger man stumbles upon an article that discusses PMO vs. fornication without the proper context that we’re discussing the better of two bad options.”

        You’re right. That should be stated up front. I’ll change the introduction to make this more clear.

        Liked by 2 people

    • Red Pill Apostle says:

      frankchalmers2061,

      “For those of us who are single and haven’t given into the temptation of cashing out early via the horizontal tango and/or long-term corn shucking, it would be nice to hear from those that walked the same path and exited successfully into a Godly marriage.”

      Exiting into a Godly marriage paints a false picture. Maybe, just maybe, if her father did an exemplary job of teaching her what a biblical marriage looks like and her mother lived out those behaviors towards her father, she might be the type of woman a man could merely walk into a Godly marriage with. There are a bunch of assumptions about personalities and preferences that have to line up as well for this to work. Due to the statistical rarity of this all coming together, it makes sense that a man who walks into a marriage like this says it is by the grace of God.

      What is much more likely is that a man enters into marriage and then the real work begins. This work often involves a man making changes to himself so he can best give her the instructions and guidance for how to be his helper (then hold her to those standards) and the woman making changes to herself so she can use her abilities to give him what he needs from her. This means that the top characteristic (outside of being a Christian) to consider in a woman is her willingness to change for you because she need to. This is true 99.99% of the time.

      Liked by 2 people

      • “What is much more likely is that a man enters into marriage and then the real work begins.”

        You bring up a good point. I sometimes forget this during late night readings of this material — due to the selfish focus on my particular situation, it’s easy for me to assume the grass is greener on the other side. It is, in a way, but greener grass has its own problems — more cutting and trimming, extra water and regular fertilizing (heh)… basically constant maintenance. Plus it gets out of hand quicker.

        My finance analogy really ought to be tweaked. It’s not truly an exit via an IPO — it’s more of a buy and hold stock that you hope gets to the point where you feel comfortable taking private as the new CEO because doing so may pay dividends to your investors down the road. You’re doing more work as the CEO of a private company than if you were just doing a quick pump and dump scheme, but if you choose right and make the right decisions, it’s worth it in the long run.

        Liked by 1 person

  6. Scott says:

    I wonder sometimes how people in my generation and the 2 – 3 before me really stayed away from sex prior to marriage. Even in the most “conservative” of circles.

    In my formative years, we were a 3 times a week, deacon dad, Sunday school teacher mom, super involved in the life and fellowship of the church family. I went to a private Christian school until 9th grade.

    Around a year after that, my parents did a “trial separation” that lasted about 6 months before we went back to intact family (they split for the final time when I was 21).

    I know both of my parents were getting as much as they could while they were apart.

    But even before that. Junior high or just prior, I remember overhearing conversations (that the adults probably didn’t think I understood) between my parents and others about “baby making practice” and other euphemisms describing their pre-martial antics.

    Even my very devout grandparents had these “wink wink, nudge nudge” conversations occasionally.

    Some of those marriages lasted 6 or more decades and produced many children, grandchildren and were the kind we all want. Some of them wiped out.

    But I don’t get the impression any of them were virgins when they got married.

    So, by the time I was 16 and the moment of truth was about to occur one late summer night in my room, hoping my little sisters and parents were asleep, none of the teaching about sexual morality was even on my radar screen.

    Now I have four kids and I tell them what I expect but I’m pretty sure they know how I did it. How could they not?

    I absolutely cannot imagine a life where I became who I am today and been on a different trajectory.

    Liked by 2 people

    • thedeti says:

      “I wonder sometimes how people in my generation and the 2 – 3 before me really stayed away from sex prior to marriage. Even in the most “conservative” of circles.”

      They didn’t. I’ve discovered over the past decade or so that the piety we saw from adults wasn’t quite so pious. More like “Do as I say, not as I did.”

      A lot of it was centered around “doing everything but P in V”. Girls drawing the line at “going all the way”. That was mostly practical (wanted to avoid pregnancy) and technical (wanted to preserve their “technical virginity” — “I’m saving P in V for my husband”).

      They stayed away from P in V. They didn’t stay away from all sexual conduct.

      Liked by 2 people

      • I dated a couple “committed” Catholic girls like that. Out of habit/superstition/appearances they’d never miss a Saturday afternoon service, but they didn’t mind giving a couple BJs on Saturday night (or other days). So very pious.

        Liked by 2 people

      • thedeti says:

        I knew a lot of women like this.

        –went to Saturday night church because they were going out later and there was no way they were going to make it to a Sunday morning service.

        –they’d do everything but P in V. Or, everything but P in V and give BJs. There was a lot of resistance to giving BJs because “ewwww that’s gross”.

        Liked by 2 people

  7. I never followed Purity Culture too closely, but a proper analysis of those who abandoned it would also have to consider the orthodoxy of the rest of their beliefs. Countless kids that my daughters grew up with were at church all the time growing up but turned into pagan Leftists when they went to college. Their defining characteristics weren’t informed by a right understanding of the Gospel and the Bible but by peer pressure. They were like whomever they were around. We didn’t push our kids to do youth groups and such, as it was mostly (bad) entertainment. By the grace of God, they grew up informed by sound apologetics and an accurate view of the Gospel. They behaved well and married well (we are blessed with terrific, committed Christian sons-in-law). Yes, we taught them the value of purity, but not by any of those books or as a religion in itself.

    Liked by 1 person

    • Jack says:

      EM,

      “Their defining characteristics weren’t informed by a right understanding of the Gospel and the Bible but by peer pressure.”

      Yes. This brings to mind a couple more reasons why Purity Culture failed.

      1) Similar to how Jesus described the pharisees in Matthew 23, there was a heavy emphasis on image, performance, shame, and judgment, which locked the young hopefuls into a legalistic social framework and prevented them from seeing the point of it all.

      2) People were parading their “holiness” for all the world to see. In Matthew 6:1-4, Jesus tells us not to do this. As with anything of this nature, it undercuts the heavenly blessings that one might have otherwise obtained from the discipline.

      Both of these could be part of the metaphysical reason why marriage remained elusive to many of them.

      Liked by 2 people

  8. feeriker says:

    Re: Jack says: 2022-04-19 at 9:14 am

    “Purity Culture” was churchianity’s attempt to force an important Scriptural virtue onto a churchian culture that had otherwise completely capitulated to the World and its secular cultural values.

    “Abstinence until marriage” is all well and good, and makes sense in a culture that takes marrying at a young age seriously and goes to great extremes to make it happen for its young adults. That, of course, is NOT modern American churchian culture, which mirrors the World’s goal of making marriage a non-priority to be deferred indefinitely if possible, especially in young women. “Saving oneself for marriage” that never happens, or that happens years or decades in the future is a fool’s errand, and there are few bigger fools than American churchians. It’s the same as feminism’s telling men that they’re evil, stupid, and irrelevant, and yet expecting them to go out of their way to keep building and sustaining the civilization that hates and marginalizes them. It’s madness and is doomed to fail through its own internal contradictions.

    Liked by 4 people

    • Lastmod says:

      Where were the “church elders” and all the “biblical scholars” and “celebrity pastors” when this came out? Josh Harris was a KID when he wrote this. He was what 18, 19, 20? WHere was the strong “bold and biblical” questioning by said people. Where was Driscoll, Chandler, Noble, and all of them during this? Where were all the “men” in run of the mill churches? They ALL were endorsing it. All of them

      All the churches made this book doctrine in Protestant culture, and you didn’t DARE question it. Now? These same people say “Josh wasn’t really a Christian”

      I wasn’t even in the faith at that time, and I had heard about this book in church culture

      Like

      • feeriker says:

        The “authority figures” within the church are hopelessly clueless and lost when it comes to intersexual relationships, especially where the formation of Christian families is concerned. As Rollo used to occasionally remark, it’s a wonder that Christians ever manage to breed at all.

        Liked by 4 people

      • Oscar says:

        All the churches made this book doctrine in Protestant culture, and you didn’t DARE question it.

        I questioned it. Josh Harris and I are the same age. When older Christians told me to read his book, I said “he’s my age. How could he possibly know any more than I do?” I never got a good answer to that question, so I never read the book.

        Have you ever considered daring to question what others don’t? It’s kind of fun, and Biblically required.

        1 Thessalonians 5:21 Test all things; hold fast what is good.

        And no, Josh was never a Christian.

        1 John 2:19 They went out from us, but they were not of us; for if they had been of us, they would no doubt have continued with us: but they went out, that they might be made manifest that they were not all of us.

        Liked by 4 people

      • Oscar says:

        By the way, why wouldn’t you dare question Josh Harris? What’s the worst that could happen if you did? You know what happened to me when I questioned Josh Harris?

        Nothing.

        Seriously, what’s so damned scary about it?

        Liked by 2 people

      • Lexet Blog says:

        I question any celebrity Christian or pastor selling a book.

        Liked by 1 person

      • Lastmod says:

        The people who said he was too young were met with “but the Bible says ‘dont let them say you are too young’ kind of thing”

        Its only “biblically required” when you question things Oscar. So many otehrs here have “questioned” and you pretty much shut them down….like these protestants did to most anyone who might have had a problem with Josh Harris.

        Josh could care less what anyone thinks of him at this point. I just remember the book everywhere in the late 1990’s. All it did in the end to CHristian men was make them angry, and gave a “p*ssy pass” to women who were just waiting for the right one….through no fault of their own of course.

        When I read the book in 2010 (The Salvation Army was still pushing it as ‘holy’ in the youth and single groups) I found it……as usual in the Christian faith……..ten to twenty years behind the times and culture. I found it blaming men for the plight of single women…..even though all the men the church are “weak” and actually have zero influence at all…except the pastor and the gang of elders that usually surround him.

        Josh actually was pretty smart if he hoodwinked celebrity pastors, Christian talk shows (alwasy the host a woman with big, big hair), all the real men and “guys gus’s” in the church. And the top tier men didnt follow this anyway, not did most women. It pretty much again made men like me “guilty” of something we had little or no control obver.

        When it was made bunk, and peiople did start to question it….I found it not surprising that everyone in the Christian “celelbrity scene” acted like they questioned it, or had problems with it from day one…..and of course…OF COURSE….”Josh really was never a christian to begin with statements”

        Would any of these folks like to go to “court” of that? Doubtful. Oh, and they are still respected in the church. What does that say about the flock, christians and Protestantism in gemeral?

        Its a club….and most of us aint and will never be in it

        Liked by 1 person

    • Oscar says:

      “The people who said he was too young were met with “but the Bible says ‘dont let them say you are too young’ kind of thing…”

      So? Do you know how old Timothy was when St Paul told him that? Timothy was in his 40s.

      Besides, that doesn’t answer my question. What exactly makes questioning Josh Harris so damned scary that you “wouldn’t dare”?

      “It’s only “biblically required” when you question things Oscar. So many others here have “questioned” and you pretty much shut them down…”

      You’re lying again, Jason. You’re allowed to question anything you want. Your obvious dislike of Biblical answers to your questions does not constitute “shutting down”.

      “Josh could care less what anyone thinks of him at this point.”

      BS. Josh cares a lot about what his fellow SJWs think. Same idol, different name.

      “Josh actually was pretty smart if he hoodwinked celebrity pastors, Christian talk shows (the host is always a woman with big, big hair), all the real men and “guys gus’s” in the church.”

      It takes very little intelligence to dupe gullible people who don’t read the Bible, and don’t even know the Bible commands them to “test all things.”

      “What does that say about the flock, Christians, and Protestantism in general?”

      I told you. It says they’re gullible and don’t read the Bible.

      So, once again, what’s so damned scary about questioning Josh Harris?

      Liked by 1 person

      • Lastmod says:

        What’s so scary is the fact that no one called it out as “bunk” in 1997. I know, I know……. Everybody did (of course now, they were the lone voice back then standing against this book), “but those darn blue pilled guys running the church had so much power, influence over me being a real man I couldnt say anything…..” As if.

        No. People who didn’t need “I kissed dating goodbye” didnt read it, and if they did (in their youth group) they knew that they didn’t have to worry about this, or be concerned. It didn’t apply to them.

        To everyone else. Yes, it did apply.

        No one got on a podium on a Sunday and said, “This book is hurting young men, single men, dating and social interactions. Josh isn’t even a Christian!” No one did this.

        No one at the “men’s group” told the pastor, “Get rid of this book, its teachings, or I walk from this church!”

        No one did.

        It’s like when I was in college. This whole PC nonsense was really gaining steam… as it did at private liberal arts colleges back in the late 1980’s. What did we do???

        Nothing. Notta thing. We just laughed and said, “Oh, when these folks get into the real world, they’ll change!” and “No one buys this; people will never become so hyper sensitive, and won’t have their free speech threatened!”

        No one is laughing now. BUT, we hear over and over of all these brave people who “stood up” to it. Lots of talk on Fox especially (Gutfield / The 5) “I was always against it, and I stood up to the PC crowd from day one, you see I am a real man…” (a lie, everyone just laughed, no one ‘stopped it’).

        So the same with Harris’s book. Its very “acceptable” NOW to say, “Oh, of course he was never a Christian”, and “Everyone knew his ideas were terrible from day one, common sense.”

        So you may not have been afraid of Josh Harris Oscar, but you were d@mned afraid of causing a ruckus at your church over this book.

        Liked by 1 person

      • Oscar says:

        “What’s so scary is the fact that no one called it out as “bunk” in 1997.”

        You’re still not answering the question, Jason. Why were you so scared to question Josh Harris?

        “I know, I know……. Everybody did”

        And, now you’re lying again. No one said that “everyone” questioned Harris. I specifically stated that gullible Christians failed to question him.

        “It’s very “acceptable” NOW to say, “Oh, of course he was never a Christian.”

        Well, yeah. Remember the Scripture, “they went out from us because they were not of us”. The reason people who actually read the Bible say Harris was never a Christian is because the Bible says Harris was never a Christian. You’re free to disagree with God’s word, but you’re still wrong.

        “So you may not have been afraid of Josh Harris Oscar, but you were d@mned afraid of causing a ruckus at your church over this book.”

        Why would I “make a ruckus” over a book I never read?

        I never said that I knew the damage Harris’s book would do. I never even knew what the book said. I just thought it was foolish to listen to a 20-year-old, because I knew what fools 20-year-olds are, because I was one.

        So once again, what was so damned scary about questioning Josh Harris?

        Liked by 1 person

      • Oscar says:

        Since Jason never answered the question (surprise!), I’ll answer it for him.

        There was absolutely no reason whatsoever to fear questioning Josh Harris. Ever. It was one of the most low-risk things I’ve ever done. There were exactly zero negative repercussions for questioning Josh Harris.

        So, if you lack the balls to question a 20-year-old snot-nosed-kid who obviously doesn’t know what he’s talking about, I suggest you grow a pair. The world is getting increasingly risky. We’re now seeing real repercussions for questioning the unthinking herd. Christians have lost their livelihoods for questioning things like sodomite “marriage”, BLM, and the COVID vaccine. I got threatened with court martial for the last one.

        It’s not going to get any easier. A man who fears upsetting the church ladies isn’t going to stand very long against real tyranny.

        Here’s an example of what I’m talking about. It’s well worth your time.

        Like

      • Lexet Blog says:

        Timothy was also give a very specific temporary role by an apostle, and that role was not to be carried on through church history. Same book forbid young single men from being deacons and elders

        Like

  9. Maniac says:

    I questioned Harris’s faith as well. I think his book was less about a movement of God upon his heart so much as it was a matter of Misery Loves Company. “I’m a repressed, 21 year-old virgin whose girlfriend just broke up with me, and most of the girls in my church are taller than I am. If I’m going dwn, I’m taking a hell of a lot of people with me.” And he did.

    Liked by 5 people

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