Objectification is meaningless

A reader writes in:

Can you talk about the idea of objectification? I hear people use this word in regards to lust, porn, cat-calling, etc. but I’m not entirely sure I see sexual immorality as objectifying. Is objectification really the problem most men have in their views of women? If we ran through the gamut of sexual sin, do they all involve degrading a woman to an object? Is commitment the only thing that makes it not objectification. Maybe you get what I’m driving at? I just never understood that word and how exactly we objectify women in modern culture. For instance, to praise a women on her beauty is often considered objectification because it’s assuming she has no power of agency and is merely an object to be looked at.

You gotta go back to the basics to understand this.

If an attractive man (or celebrity) “cat calls” a woman and she recognizes him, she’s going to think it’s flattering. If an unattractive man (say a homeless man) does the same thing she’s going to think it’s creepy. Women love to get the attention of attractive men with their beauty but hate when unattractive men do the same thing. Cat calls are corny and crass, so I would not recommend Christians do them anyway. But the point remains.

The problem is not with “objectification” but rather the context of who is doing the objectifying. It’s a great thing for a husband and wife to objectify each other in that they’re sexually attracted to various traits and aspects of each other. If you burn with passion and want to marry, it’s a good thing to have that sexual attraction toward your wife. As with a wife, think she looks amazing or sexy? It’s fine to express it, as long as you’re not committing fornication or lacking self control with her (if not married).

Immorality of lust and porn are not sins because you’re objectifying in them. Lust (or rather coveting in the NT) is about desiring wife that isn’t yours (or woman if you’re married). Lack of self control and warring against the flesh. There is reason the idea that it creates unreasonable expectations just like romance novels do with women too.

Overall, I would ignore everything that “modern culture” says about any topic. You’ll always find that modern culture presents numerous double standards in behavior, usually in the favor of pedestalizing or idolizing women. The goal is to be conformed to Christ, and it’s clear that culture is almost always diametrically opposed to what Christ says.

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50 Responses to Objectification is meaningless

  1. donalgraeme says:

    Objectification is a term mostly used to attack men and how they express themselves sexually. A trap, if you will.

    True “objectification” would be to disregard the human dignity of someone and reduce them solely to a tool meant for this purpose or that. Admiring the beauty of a woman does not objectify her. To objectify her would be to see her as only existing for the purpose of fulfilling your sexual desires/appetites.

  2. Jonadab-the-Rechabite says:

    A wife should be the object of her husband’s sexual desire and the subject of his love. Is that objectifying or subjectifying? I don’t care what the answer is. It is God’s design and carries His blessing, everything else is moot. There is even a whole book in the OT about the object of sexual desire.

    The term objectification is but a cudgel against masculine sexuality. Feminists use the term to wrestle control over men and white-knights use it to eliminate competition hoping to be the OBJECT of female desire. The church has gotten sexuality wrong for a very long time. From gnostic dualism, to chivalrous usurpations the church seems to want to keep sex dirty and beauty shameful. But mostly it aims to please women whatever it takes and undercut men and so with a veneer of piety to make churchy.

  3. Minesweeper says:

    “Lust (or rather coveting in the NT) is about desiring wife that isn’t yours”

    True, to clarify it’s about the desire of possession of that which belongs to another not sexual attraction.

    “(or woman if you’re married)”

    And desiring another woman to be another wife if your married isn’t an issue either, considering there is no limit to the number of wives allowed, unless you want to be an elder\deacon.

    Covetousness – “greedy, acquisitive, grasping, avaricious mean having or showing a strong desire for especially material possessions. covetous implies inordinate desire often for another’s possessions.”

    https://www.biblestudytools.com/dictionary/covetousness/

    “Strong desire to have that which belongs to another. It is considered to be a very grievous offense in Scripture. The tenth commandment forbids coveting anything that belongs to a neighbor, including his house, his wife, his servants, his ox or donkey, or anything that belongs to him ( Exod 20:17 ). Jesus listed covetousness or greed along with many of the sins from within, including adultery, theft, and murder, which make a person unclean ( Mr 7:22 ). Paul reminded the Ephesians that greed or covetousness is equated with immorality and impurity, so that these must be put away ( 5:3 ). A covetous or greedy person is an idolator ( 5:5 ) and covetousness is idolatry ( Col 3:5 ). James warns that people kill and covet because they cannot have what they want ( 4:2 ).

    Covetousness, therefore, is basic to the commandments against murder, adultery, stealing, and lying. Those who accept bribes are coveting, leading to murder ( Eze 22:12 ). Coveting a neighbor’s wife is a form of adultery ( Exod 20:17 )”

  4. Minesweeper says:

    As for women complaining about objectification, like everything else that’s from our feminist culture its a BPD like-projection from them, what they do they complain that others (men) do this to them.

    If any sex really objectifies the other, its women of men.

    A woman will rate a man in an expensive car significantly higher than a man in a poor car, same man, same clothes, same hair, same face. It doesn’t even involve him rather his surroundings that indicate wealth or not.

    Same woman, same clothes,face, different cars, men will rate them the same.

    Our feminist culture really is a civilisational ending sh8t test that our forefathers have failed, and we are now facing the consequences and its horrendous.

    You can see why when God moved the israelites into new regions, he usually told them to wipe out everything. As once the camel gets its nose into the tent, the rot sure sets in fast.

  5. fuzziewuzziebear says:

    About “objectification”, I haven’t any murmurs from feminists on this point in a long time. Could they be relying solely on Tinder? The primary feature of Tinder is that communication can’t start until both participants swipe right, that is accept, each other.

  6. Norvis says:

    I agree with donal. People often and easily objectify others when we see others as being reduced to a mere object meant for our persinal use and gratification rather than seeing the other as a person made in the image of God. IMHO if all a woman is to you is a collection of physical parts (breasts, bum, legs, etc.) that you envision as a mere means to your personal gratification then you are objectifying that person. There is no need for it to involve cat calls or the physical appearance of the objectifyer as it is done in the heart.

  7. Jacob says:

    Just as men can and do treat women as sex objects, women can and do treat men as ‘success’ objects. Pornography and hypergamy are two sides of the same coin when you take the psychosexual differences between men and women into account. The provlem is that while pornography is rightly treated as sin, hypergamy is not. In fact, hypergamy is seen as good righy and proper even by men in Christian manosphere.

    Truth is, hypergamy is not godly behavior. Songs of Solomon is often touted as a treatise on sexual intimacy by God’s design, but I don’t yuink that’s it’s purpose at all. The Shulammite woman is shiwn as the righteous character, pining after her God-given husband even under the powerfully hypergamous pull of a king’s attentions. The whole story is a lesson against hypergamy, in favour of the sanctity and fidelity of marriage. It is used in Songs as a metaphor for Israel’s infidelity. It’s as clear an indication in Scripture that hypergamy exists but that it is not what God wants for women.

    The bottom line is that just as sex objectification of women by men (and it happens nearly as much the other way around these days) is wrong, so also is the success objectification of men by women. Success objectification is much more of a problem because pretty much all women do it but it hardly taught anywhere as wrong. Runaway hypergamy (Solomon’s harems) is the result. In this we see how closely the end game of feminism (Alpha men as breeding stock) is in accord with Israel’s downfall and ultimately exile. Open borders anyone?

    As far as I’m concerned, any Christian woman who has not recognized and is dealing with her own personal hypergamous desires, or at least praying the Lord would shape her into something more like the Shulammite woman, is not serious about being a Christian wife. The Psalm 31 woman is only an ideal. The Shulammite woman is real. Women who who have been changed towards the latter are truly beautiful right to the end of their lives long after physical beauty has left them. If any you has had the privilege if growing old with such a woman by your side you will know exactly what I mean.

    In my opinion, the more sexy the woman and the more successful her Solomon, the less likely it is that a faithful Christian marriage will result.

  8. Jacob says:

    Correction: Proverbs 31 not Psalm 31.

  9. Jacob says:

    I should add (sorry for the long comments) that any Christian man who hasn’t recognized the dangers of sex objectification (pornography etc) and is dealing with it, is not serious about being a Christian husband.

    To my mind, the dangers of pornography and hypergamy need to be taught side by side if the church is to tackle the feminism problem effectively. In neglecting to teach about success objectification we only deal with one half of the issue.

    Unfortunately, many churches seem to be in the habit of raising up Pastor-princes who become a sort of Solomon-proxy. In a runaway hypergamous environment this would effectively replace Christ as the sacred object of worship. Giving church leadership a scriptural polish and elevating it to a mark of godly manliness turns churches into soft harems around men who visibly lead in church, which makes it all the more difficult for the quiet faithful men of God who are sitting in the pews to attract a wife. Singleness abounds in success-objectifying churches because the young women are unwilling to ‘settle’ for anyone but a prince.

    If families are not naturally forming in a church (as opposed to drawing familes in), growth would end up being dependent on the reputation of the church, the popularity of its pastor, the attractiveness of its ‘ministries’, or the breadth of its outreach programs. Who needs Christ when church is doing so well?

    Christ came as a humble and uncomely man. Without his Holy Spirit, the builders build in vain. The unhelpful triumphalism that characterizes many evangelical churches in the West today looks to me like a modern version of Israel’s golden calf problem. It wouldn’t surprise if things end the same way.

  10. fuzziewuzziebear says:

    This issue does frost my pumpkin. It is manufactured by feminists to cover for their revulsion of having to turn down interest from men they see as beneath their sexual rank. How are men supposed to know? We’re not mind readers. Add to that, this is exacerbated by hypergamy, which can be seen as a specific form of greed,

  11. AngloSaxon says:

    If objectification of women is wrong why are we told in 1 Corinthians 11:9 “Neither was man created for the woman, but the woman for the man.” And in Romans 1:27 “And likewise also the men, leaving the natural use of the woman…”

    We are told the natural use of the woman is to sleep with them and that God created women for men, why then is it a problem to take visual and sexual pleasure in women? Its one of the primary reasons why God created them in the first place.

  12. That Brotha Pedat says:

    A husband can most certainly objectify his wife if the only value he sees in her is as a utility, and not a joint-heir or weaker vessel to sanctify, guide, and instruct.

    There are a lot of funky assed wretched men, whom – like women, see their spouses as merely human “doings” as opposed to human “beings”. Of course, our wives do belong to us, we do “own” them somewhat, but we are to be stewards of them according to the SPIRIT first, and then all the fleshly privileges are put into proper context.

    I know men who wouldn’t piss on their wives if they are on fire (and I am NOT being hyperbolic or white knighting either, because I am well aware of female fuckery and bullshit) but DEMAND that their wives roll over in the middle of the night and take it like a porn star, then roll back over and go back to sleep. In that regard they ARE objects.

    So objectification is contextual.

  13. That Brotha Pedat says:

    I hit return too soon…

    So yes, wives are objects of our sexual desire and pleasure.

    Likewise, they are also the clay that we are to care for and mold into vessels of honor.

    They are both.

    If you are a shitty sculptor, then you dishonor the Most High with your shitty product, which is the mystery of marriage, and it’s witness thereof.

  14. Jacob says:

    AngloSaxon,

    I think the qualifier is marriage. As DS has noted, objectification is meaningless when it is between husband and wife. This is because the object in marriage is the holy union. Sexual desire may drive a couple towards marriage but the objective is honoring God. A fine distinction maybe but a crucially important one. God’s plan for His people has always been to change our orientation away from our idols and back towards Him. Sex is therefore a physical means to a spiritual end. The spiritual objective is holiness, just as God is holy. Sexual and success objectification is substituting God’s purposes with our own.

    In one sense you are right. Husband and wife are created to be sexually used by each other. But it’s the spiritual character of the usage that matters. The holy union is the object, not the mere fulfilment of personal desire, even though God gave us desire for each other. As with all things given by God, they’re intended to turn us away from sin and towards Him. But sin also taints everything God gives us. Desire for each other gets tainted with self-satisfying self-interest. Pornographic and hypergamous objectification is the result, even in marriage.

  15. Anonymous Reader says:

    donalgraeme
    True “objectification” would be to disregard the human dignity of someone and reduce them solely to a tool meant for this purpose or that.

    Like regarding another human as merely a beast of burden such as a mule, or a cash machine that provides money on demand? That kind of “tool meant for my purpose”?

  16. AngloSaxon says:

    No the reason why men marry is because 1 Cor 7:9 “But if they cannot contain, let them marry, for it is better to marry than to burn.” Men take wives because they are horny and the Bible tells you to get married if you are horny and can’t handle it.

    I don’t know what this talk of sex being a physical means to a spiritual end is all about. Please quote chapter and verse on that. As far as I’m concerned sex is primarily about physical pleasure and producing children.

    Also please quote chapter and verse which says objectifying women is wrong. If men didn’t objectify women as sex objects nobody would ever be born.

  17. Jacob says:

    AngloSaxon,

    Rather than getting hung up on language, let’s look more closely at the Bible verses you’ve quoted.

    In 1 Cor 11, I think Paul is referring to Gen 2:18-23 which describes how woman was created as a helper for man. The ‘help’ would be for the working and watching over the Garden of Eden (Gen 2:15). It’s an all-encompassing work for God’s glory and not just procreative, although it would include sex and children since man and woman are to be joined as one flesh (Gen 2:24) and are commanded to be fruitful and multiply (Gen 1:28). The object is God’s glory. To objectify man or woman or any other aspect of Creation is to elevate them above God.

    In Rom 1:27, the ‘natural’ sex Paul is talking about is procreative sex, specifically in contrast to ‘unnatural’ or non-procreative sex associated with cult prostitution, idolatry and depravity. The preceding verses are key to understanding his point, v25 in particular:

    “They exchanged the truth of God for a lie, and worshipped and served something created instead of the Creator, who is praised forever. Amen.” (Rom 1:25)

    We see again that sex was created for God’s glory, but the Romans in question were making sex the object. God gave them over to their depravity as a result.

    In 1 Cor 7:9, Paul is answering the question of whether it is better or not to marry. His earlier words to them were:

    “Now in response to the matters you wrote about: “It is good for a man not to have relations with a woman.” But because sexual immorality is so common, each man should have his own wife, and each woman should have her own husband. (1 Cor 7:1-2)

    He’s clearly saying that sex in marriage is better than sexual immorality and loss of self-control, but he’s not saying that is the purpose of marriage. The purpose of marriage is given in Gen 1.

    Paul provides the spiritual basis for his teaching about this at the end of the preceding chapter in 1 Cor 6: 12-20. The body is “for the Lord” (v13), a “sanctuary of the Holy Spirit which is in you […] for you are not your own” (v19), therefore “glorify God in your own body” (v20).

    There’s a lot more that can be said about this subject but maybe not in the comments.

  18. Joe2 says:

    AngloSaxon
    1 Cor 7:9 is addressed to the unmarried and widows in 7:8. So it applies to both men and women. So get married if you are horny and can’t handle it.

    It would seem to fulfill Paul’s teaching the couple would have to be mutually horny. The problem is that men are horny, but may be unable to find a woman who is equally or even somewhat horny for them. So Paul’s teaching leaves us in a quandary. A marriage to a woman who doesn’t make it crystal clear that she has the hots for him is a recipe for disaster.

  19. As fuzzie pointed to, any time something is a complaint from Feminists, it’s always about projection. But, the key is figuring out what is being projected.

    If a Man has an issue in objectifying Women, he’s fairly far down the psychopathic or sociopathic path. While Women do tend to find that sexually attractive (when it’s wrapped in the correct packaging), there’s normally a serious other dysfunction in a Man’s life and the objectification issue is just a minor presentation of it. (Think “do they have corpses buried in the backyard?”.) As DS started this off with, it’s pretty meaningless.

    A wife is an “end” for a Man. Normally the end of a lot of work and expenditure of time/energy/money. A normally functioning Male will tend to cherish that which they’ve worked quite hard to acquire. The same is not true for Women. A husband is always a “means to an end” for a Woman. This means that a Woman will have to fight off the instinctive desire to objectify Men.

    That’s what it is really about. It’s a fitness test, like most things with Women are. It’s not an issue of serious discussion and giving it such discussion ends up failing the test. Fitness tests are almost always based in deception, and this is no different.

  20. fuzziewuzziebear says:

    To add to LG’s comment, feminism has been described as a gigantic, society wide fitness test. I think we are failing.

  21. purge187 says:

    “Also please quote chapter and verse which says objectifying women is wrong.”

    It mostly stems from the traditional Evangelical (mis)interpretation of Jesus’s words about lust in Matthew 5, which DS has thankfully talked about here.

  22. That Brotha Pedat says:

    AR writes:

    “Like regarding another human as merely a beast of burden such as a mule, or a cash machine that provides money on demand? That kind of “tool meant for my purpose”?”

    Yes, THAT kind of tool. Neither a man nor a woman should regard either as such. THAT is objectification.

  23. SnapperTrx says:

    @AngloSaxon

    There is no sin of objectification, nor is objectification anything wrong. Larry at Biblical Gender Roles backs this via scripture in a great post:

    https://biblicalgenderroles.com/2017/06/28/why-it-is-not-wrong-for-men-to-see-women-as-sex-objects/

    He’s absolutely correct, for those who choose not to read the lengthy article, in that people, both men and women, are “objectified” every day and no one bats an eye. You don’t consider the well being of the girl serving your breakfast at the Denny’s. In fact, most people would be pretty irritated if she showed up bringing her emotional baggage along with your eggs and pancakes. We don’t need to know every life detail about the guy changing our oil, he is a tool, hired by a business, whom we use to get a job done. Only when it come to so called “sexual objectification” do people get in an uproar, likely because of women-are-wonderful syndrome. To say that women shouldn’t be objectifying men for their ability to provide or their status is abnormal because most people, ESPECIALLY CHRISTIANS, will tell women to make sure they find a man who can provide for them, has a good job, etc.

    In addition God provides instruction on how to treat slaves and servants, both essentially objects to their owners. They are considered property and were treated as such. If God were against such “objectification” then he would have said so instead of giving instructions on how these “objects” should be treated. And take note that I use the word “objects” in a very facetious manner because that seems to be the buzzword in the conversation. Surprise, surprise, after instructing servants, again, property, how to act towards their masters Peter chimes in with “wives, likewise”, meaning, in the same manner as described above (1 Peter 2:18 – 3:6) because the two stations are similar, servant and wife. Naturally we can see the two are quite different overall, but their base function is the same: Servant, helper, which means property. That doesn’t mean either wives or servants can be mistreated the same way you would mistreat, say, a shovel, and the bible is clear on that. To draw parallels between the objectification of people and actual objects is a far stretch.

    As for the whole mystic/spiritual sex, well, yes, sex has a spiritual function in that it creates the marriage bond between a man and woman, but afterward the act does not seem to take on a spiritual function. MARRIAGE is representative of the bond between Christ and the church. SEX creates the marriage, but SEX is not representative of the bond between Christ and the church. The sex act creates a covenant when the woman loses her virginity, but post-marriage sex does not recreate the covenant ever time it is performed! Attributing spiritual attributes to a physical act, where none are presented in scripture, smells of gnosticism, whereby the physical is called evil and the spiritual good. Sex is a physical act that creates a covenant, sex after the marriage covenant is created is sex, and it is intended for fun and procreation. Can we thank God for it? Yes! He created it and gifted it to us! Should we believe that every time we have sex with our wives we are performing some kind of spiritual ritual? No, the bible does not support that. When Abram and God passed between the split beasts to create a covenant would they need to pass between the rotting carcasses over and over to prove their covenant or renew it? No, the covenant was made.

    Anyhow, I would highly recommend reading the BGR article, as he goes into much, much more detail and provides much scripture to support his claim and really that should be the goal, to take a claim and prove it out through the filter of scripture.

    Enjoy.

  24. SnapperTrx says:

    Ah, I did want to say, however, and I forgot, that this doesn’t mean that objectification CANNOT LEAD TO SINFUL BEHAVIOR. If a person, man or woman, treats people with the same regard as a non-living object, ie: a man grabs women against their will or wishes, or a woman manager screams at or hits her employees, then, yes, that is sinful, but it is still not a sin of objectifying people because no such sin exists in the scripture. This still doesn’t make objectification bad in and of itself any more than it makes eating sinful in and of itself. Eating profusely can lead to the sin of gluttony, drinking to alcoholism, medicating to addiction – these things in and of themselves are not sinful but the excess of them and permitting them to control ones life IS sinful. I hope this helps you,

  25. Jacob says:

    That BRG article makes a logical argument, however the argument is built on a Dictionary.com definition of “object”, which reduces the meaning to one of mere utility. By that definition, all objects are part of Creation therefore anything we do, even using our voice to preach a sermon, could be called objectification. There can be no Sin of Objectification if everything is usable.

    However, when people talk of objectification they also mean the character, purpose and orientation of that usage, especially where it involves the body and other people. Paul makes it clear in 1 Cor 6:12-20 that the body is not our own, but is a sanctuary for the Holy Spirit and therefore an object to be used to glorify God. Sex in marriage would be objectification by the Dictionary.com definition, but it’s not sinful because marriage glorifies God.

    Obviously language and definitions matter. They can help us understand God’s Word, but they can also confuse the issue. What’s important is that God wants us to use His created objects not simply for our own gratification but for His glory.

    It does invite the question however: Can we use our wife or husband for self-gratification, and would that be wrong? In other words, can there be such a thing as ‘marital rape’?

  26. AngloSaxon says:

    How about I glorify God though objectifying women as sex objects?

    The Bible doesn’t teach that only procreative sex is allowed. Proverbs 5:19 “A loving doe, a graceful deer– may her breasts satisfy you always, may you ever be intoxicated with her love.”

    You can’t get a girl pregnant by playing with her breasts.

  27. Jacob says:

    Proverbs 5 is about enjoying sex with your wife in lifelong faithful marriage. That section of the chapter is a treatise on the dangers of being seduced by any woman who is not your wife, probably a prostitute. The lesson is not about sex objectification but the rewarding discipline of fidelity in marriage.

    A wife is given to you (by God) – “water from your own cistern” (v18) – to you alone and not for strangers (v17), that “your fountain be blessed” and pleasure be lifelong “the wife of your youth” ( v18), “her breasts always satisfy” you, that you “be lost in her love forever” (v19). The rest of Proverbs 5 (and the surrounding chapters) shows that this is part of a broader lesson about being faithful to God and staying on the narrow path. The Spiritual aim is lifelong fidelity.

    By all means we can enjoy a young wife’s breasts, whether or not the sex leads to children, but the wisdom of Proverbs 5 encourages us to enjoy them just as much when she’s 90 and to the exclusion of all other women’s breasts. Is this about objectifying a womans breasts, or the discipline of love and faith?

  28. Jacob says:

    If we’re still seeing sex objectification in Proverbs 5, it more strongly teaches against it, as that would be the temptation with the seductress.

  29. fuzziewuzziebear says:

    I still think it is a huge statement from feminists that they are not complaining about “objectification” . Could it be that men are not approaching? Are they reliant on Tinder? If they are, they are in big trouble. Women have managed to make a complete mess out of every venue imaginable. If they wreck Tinder, where will they be?

  30. Paul says:

    In this context, can you discuss the development of modern marital rape laws versus consent being given at the moment of marriage?

    E.g.
    https://psychcentral.com/lib/marital-rape/
    “When a [married] woman feels that it’s just easier to give in to sex than to respect her own needs, she is being raped.”

    vs

    1 Cor 7:4
    “The wife does not have authority over her own body but yields it to her husband. In the same way, the husband does not have authority over his own body but yields it to his wife.”

    It shows that biblical marriage is practically (being) outlawed.

  31. Novaseeker says:

    It shows that biblical marriage is practically (being) outlawed.

    Not quite. The text requires that each submit to the authority of the other — that’s a Christian obligation, not to withhold your body from your spouse. But it doesn’t say that if a spouse *does* withhold, thus violating their obligations, that the other spouse can *take* from them nevertheless what they are withholding. That is, it is conceivable in the Christian moral universe for a wife to withhold her body from her husband, thereby acting immorally. The husband’s recourse is not to simply force the issue and *take* what she is withholding — there certainly isn’t authority in that verse for that “self help” type of action in the face of one spouse violating her marital obligation to yield her body to her spouse.

    Keep in mind also that this works both ways. There are plenty of Christian men who withhold themselves from their wives because their wives are fat, etc., in the same way that Christian women withhold themselves from their husbands because the husbands are “beta”. The solution is for both spouses to remain attractive to the other spouse as a priority in the marriage, to maintain the sexual spark and polarity — the solution isn’t really to advocate that either spouse has the right to “take” sex from the other, when the other is wrongfully withholding sex, and I think when Christians advocate that kind of thing we are not doing ourselves any favors.

  32. Novaseeker says:

    It shows that biblical marriage is practically (being) outlawed.

    I don’t think that’s quite the case. The text requires that each submit to the authority of the other — that’s a Christian obligation, not to withhold your body from your spouse. But it doesn’t say that if a spouse *does* withhold, thus violating their obligations, that the other spouse can *take* from them nevertheless what they are withholding. That is, it is conceivable in the Christian moral universe for a wife to withhold her body from her husband, thereby acting immorally. The husband’s recourse is not to simply force the issue and *take* what she is withholding — there certainly isn’t authority in that verse for that “self help” type of action in the face of one spouse violating her marital obligation to yield her body to her spouse.

    Keep in mind also that this works both ways. There are plenty of Christian men who withhold themselves from their wives because their wives are fat, etc., in the same way that Christian women withhold themselves from their husbands because the husbands are “beta”. The solution is for both spouses to remain attractive to the other spouse as a priority in the marriage, to maintain the sexual spark and polarity — the solution isn’t really to advocate that either spouse has the right to “take” sex from the other, when the other is wrongfully withholding sex, and I think when Christians advocate that kind of thing we are not doing ourselves any favors.

  33. fuzziewuzziebear says:

    Being single, I do have to be reminded of how common “dead bedrooms” are. The last time that I saw numbers for it, it was twenty percent in America and fifty percent in Japan. Those numbers were self reported and likely to be optimistic and it was for not having sex for a month and not having any idea when they were going to have sex again. Stuff like this is not very encouraging.

    It may be even worse. In looking for sources to link, they came back as HuffPost and the Guardian.

  34. Paul says:

    @Novaseeker

    I think you need to make yourself familiar with the modern (legal) redefinition of ‘rape’.
    It’s nowhere near having a forceful component as a necessity. That’s the clever thing of redefinition of commonly understood words like ‘marriage’ and ‘rape’ to mean something completely different.

  35. Anonymous Reader says:

    fuzziewuzziebear
    Women have managed to make a complete mess out of every venue imaginable. If they wreck Tinder, where will they be?

    Bumble, obviously.

  36. fuzziewuzziebear says:

    Anonymous Reader,
    Already, men have to contend with no functional venue. I have to wonder what women will do when the reality hits them? I am not being facetious.

  37. Anonymous Reader says:

    fuzziewuzziebear
    Already, men have to contend with no functional venue.

    So? Whose problem is that?
    Hint: A venue may have no functional value for men yet have value for women, you know.

    I have to wonder what women will do when the reality hits them? I am not being facetious.

    Already answered.
    https://infogalactic.com/info/Bumble_(app)
    Also blame men for any and all problems, of course.

    None of this should be a mystery to you after the number of years you have been reading various sites within the manosphere, fuzzie.

  38. Novaseeker says:

    I think you need to make yourself familiar with the modern (legal) redefinition of ‘rape’.
    It’s nowhere near having a forceful component as a necessity. That’s the clever thing of redefinition of commonly understood words like ‘marriage’ and ‘rape’ to mean something completely different.

    I’m well aware of that, but my point still stands. There is a distinction between being obligated to give consent to sex (Christianity requires this of spouses), on the one hand, and being scripturally empowered to have sex with one’s spouse regardless of whether they are giving actual consent — whether one uses physical force or not.

  39. purge187 says:

    “Those numbers were self reported and likely to be optimistic and it was for not having sex for a month and not having any idea when they were going to have sex again. Stuff like this is not very encouraging.”

    I derive a certain satisfaction from it, to be honest. No STDs, no bastard children, and no men being manipulated via their sex drives.

  40. seventiesjason says:

    Depends on “who” is objectifying. Any of the real ‘alpha’ men in here? It’s okay. It’s natural. It’s God ordained. Women who obectify? The usual “stop treating us differently / stop treating us the same” slight of hand discussions with complex reasons why they can, and you cannot!

    Most men? Man up speech after man up speech. Game, theories, advice, helps, books, podcasts, and then one of these “average” men actually tries to put into practice? The same men will then add the heaps of IOI’s, appraoches, complexities that very few can live up to….except them of course.

    Basically Darwin 101…………those with the biggest Egos, those who just have “it” and those who are the big monkey in their church, community or peer group are allowed to do this. Most men are just creeps for the fact they lack the looks to back up the objectifying……even if they want to, or try to learn the “secret cues and language” that women speak…….improving yourself works for you only. Women could care less.

    If you as a man don’t have “it” by the time you are 25. Find a hobby, focus on work. Don’t join a church, you will only feel more miserable being around all these amazing “ladies men” and they don’t want or need you around…..except to watch their kids during the church service or for them to throw scripture at you “did you know that since you are single you can glorify God?”

    Modern man-o-sphere Christianity is for the elect and few to lecture the rest of “what they just need to do”

    Yet all the discussions still center around sex, dating, courtship, improving yourself……..all just back patting to make themselves look better. If you are a man over 25 who is in okay shape, a decent job, a few skills, room for growth in your career………

    Quit wasting time. Work. Leave church. Travel. Refuse to help families with children (because they will not help you) and focus on how you are going to be a lone wolf. Better start now than be like me. Seriously.

  41. Joe2 says:

    If you as a man don’t have “it” by the time you are 25. Find a hobby, focus on work. Don’t join a church, you will only feel more miserable being around all these amazing “ladies men” and they don’t want or need you around…..

    Jason speaks a lot of truth here. The same can be said of other areas in life, too.

    For example, take athletics. A young man knows rather quickly whether he has “it” or not to be successful in athletics, such as baseball. If you don’t have the ability, you’ll feel miserable attempting to compete and being around those who are gifted. At best, your team may put you in left field and hope no one hits you a ball.

    Another example, take artistic / musical ability. A young man knows whether he has what it takes to say, play a guitar. Regardless of all the lessons, a young man peaks out and, although he can hang out with musicians who are better, he will never improve or improve ever so slightly. Thus, he can become frustrated and miserable.

    I can give other examples, but those illustrate the point.

    In the Christian world it’s no different. In church, all those amazing “ladies men” know you can’t compete with them, just like the gifted athletes or gifted musicians, but they will just tolerate you because it’s a church and perhaps you’ll even get some crumbs of attention.

  42. seventiesjason says:

    Sure…..some people have a natural “talent” in music with women, or art, or athletics. I don’t envy a man for who just has a natural “knack” for any area or attribute that may have. Yes, you have the man who also has the God-given talent but they practice, work at, nurture and grow it to to really stand out.

    And it shows. Air Jordon once said he “missed” more lay-ups than he ever made. I believe it. Skill and talent are great but to really be that exception, the old adage of ‘hard work’ makes it grow.

    I am audiophile. I can hear nuances in fidelity, equalization, and how a recording was made (digital, tracking, and even nuances between equipment manufactures from different eras). I can even hear on headphones with many productions from the 1960’s where the tape is spliced. Most cannot. It’s a skill…..a useless one, but a skill. I have nurtured, and grown this skill to mastery. In another era I probably would have been a George Martin, Jimmy Miller, Norman Smith, or even a Don Was.

    My older brother had Downs Syndrome. No matter how hard he tried, he was not going to progress beyond much more than a first grade reading level or cognitive ability. Did we tell him “You’re just not trying hard enough?” No. We focused on the abilities and potentials and gifts he did have.

    In dating / mating one is dealing with a ton of societal cues thrown into the mix as well. One man can have the smoothest skills, be the ace in Toastmasters, have a decent job and still “flounder” with women. Other men just have to burp or fart, and the girl thinks its “cute” and takes off her clothing immediately. Dealing with cultural cues and throwing into a mess of objectification, the nuclear family model (which is a relative NEW aspect of the family…..for untold centuries it was extended families….and in many parts of the world, that is still the norm), style, cultural norms, the piles of psychotropic drugs people are on, and throw into the mix a large middle swath of men who just don’t know what to do.

    I don’t think its an excuse for not trying, or bettering yourself…..in any area….but there comes a time in this area when its just easier to “pass the beer nuts” and find areas you do excel in or want to grow in.

  43. Paul says:

    @Novaseeker

    There’s a fine range of interpretations, and whether ‘force’ should be used or not. I do not necessarily agree or disagree with your position, but it is clear the redefinition of ‘marital rape’ in current culture, under the influence of feminism has made ‘consent’ into something COMPLETELY different from the biblical command to give authority over your body to your spouse at the moment you marry. It sure is an attack on the Christian understanding of marriage, and makes it nearly impossible to hold to certain orthodox interpretations of marriage, without disobeying the law.

    And as others have mentioned, ‘dead bedrooms’ are real, even among Christians, which is a big sin, usually committed by women, and which is NEVER addressed in the Church as far as I know.

  44. Paul says:

    I would appreciate to further discuss the topic as I proposed, but do not want to hijack this post, unless Deepstrength is fine with it.

  45. @ Paul

    Go for it.

  46. Joe2 says:

    1 Cor 7:4
    “The wife does not have authority over her own body but yields it to her husband. In the same way, the husband does not have authority over his own body but yields it to his wife.”

    I think the biblical command to give authority over your body to your spouse at the moment you marry is a general rule, but the application of that rule requires judgment. It’s the judgment that’s lacking.

    I know of two cases where the women were turned on by some kinky sex; one was into discipline and the other into “toys.” In both cases, the husband would be the recipient. In such cases, should the husband have to endure behavior he abhors because of 1 Cor 7:4? I don’t think so. The couple has to work out their differences and not dig in their heels.

    So reading Paul’s command in 1 Cor 7:4 is like reading a speed limit sign which posts a 55 mph speed limit. I have the general right to drive 55 mph and not get a ticket. But I can get a ticket if the officer believes driving at 55 is too fast for road conditions. So there needs to be judgment in the application in 1 Cor 7:4 like there needs to be judgment in driving at the posted speed limit.

  47. @ Joe2

    There’s no need for conflict there.

    Scripture must be read in the context of other Scripture as well. God’s authority is based on love: to do good to others and help promote sanctification.

  48. SirHamster says:

    There is a distinction between being obligated to give consent to sex (Christianity requires this of spouses), on the one hand, and being scripturally empowered to have sex with one’s spouse regardless of whether they are giving actual consent — whether one uses physical force or not.

    There is another case to consider in the modern legal environment – the ability to retroactively withdraw consent to create “rape”.

    It doesn’t change the Christian’s mission, but it is another risk to manage.

  49. Jonadab-the-Rechabite says:

    Novaseeker wrote “The text requires that each submit to the authority of the other — that’s a Christian obligation, not to withhold your body from your spouse. But it doesn’t say that if a spouse *does* withhold, thus violating their obligations, that the other spouse can *take* from them nevertheless what they are withholding.

    The problem with that statement is it already has assumed feminist theory as moral truth. That is it presupposes “our bodies our selves”. How can a husband “take” what is already his? How can a covenant made till death do part be withdrawn and subject to the whims of moment by moment consent? A wife belongs to her husband as the church belongs to Christ, she is not her own but bought with a price. If a wife withholds consent she is breaking vows and defrauding her husband. She is not imaging Christ and the church, but the apostasy of covenant breaking. If a husband ignores her withdrawn consent that does not make him he a rapist because she is his. It term marital-rape is an oxymoron, a metaphysical impossibility. I argue that a husband in such a situation would be wiser to exercise some discipline on his wife’s ass and thereby goad her to repentance of her sin. This would also keep sex as a mutually enjoyable activity and not a brutish one sided abomination. Of course he runs the risk of being accused of a domestic violence charge, but if done with concern for her sanctification and repentance he can stand before the Lord with a clear conscience. If he takes the course of forced sex, he may foolish and incur wrath, but he is not a rapist. She is his, even as his car is his. That fact does not give moral license to abuse his car, should still care and maintain it and avoiding needless damage. So he should care for his wife and not needlessly risk creating psychological issues with in her. When she is defrauding Spank her ass not tap it, one leads to her repentance the other to her bitterness.

    The real problem is that a wife can defraud her husband and face no apparent consequences; the law doesn’t care, the church says nothing against her, (but is ready to blast her husband if he so much as twitches), and her support group, the herd of women is cheering her on “you go girl”. Her sin is even venerated as moxie and courage. Follow the time line and observe: She will in time learn to despise her husband, look on him with contempt and disdain for his lack of sexual prowess; “why he can’t even seduce his wife – what a loser”. Perhaps she will lose her self in girl-porn romance novels and 50 shades of not my husband. Frivorce will follow and the “White-knight defenders of female sins in the name virtue will proclaim that her husband was an objectifying her sexually and is a would be rapist and abuser, so she was right to leave her covenant and reaffirm that truth of “our bodies our selves”.

    She was never his, the marriage was never a covenant but a contract of temporary consent, like that of a prostitute and a John only with tax and additional property benefits. He was reduced to begging and negotiation for sex, both of which breed contempt in his wife. Or he becomes a eunuch, a sexless servant (servant-leader) to his queen. Emasculated and eviscerated of masculinity he feels the contempt of both men and women as the loser he believes he has become. Why? Because he allowed the feminist theory of “our bodies our selves” to take root and destroy his marriage, his social standing, his masculinity and his self image.

    But at least some pietistic white-knight didn’t accuse him of raping his own wife, taking what is his against her consent. So there is that.

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