Saturday, October 22, 2016

10 Thoughts On Donald Trump And The Dignity Of Christian Women

We interrupt this music and faith blog to discuss the dignity of women. I promise we'll return to the regularly-scheduled programming after this special report. 

Dignity is the innate right to be valued, respected, and to receive ethical treatmentIt's what women lose in the wake of sexual mistreatment whether it's rape, groping, harassment, or vaguer forms of misogyny. Dignity is also what women (or any other group, for that matter) lose when fellow Christian leaders fail to defend us - we lose that sense of the very right to be valued. Thankfully, Jesus dignified women over and over. Christians on both the right and left agree with that. How I wish they all followed his example.

1. Imagine being a woman, especially a woman who has been sexually victimized, and hearing your brother in Christ say "I will defend your honor at all costs... as long as that cost doesn't mean losing a seat on the Supreme Court. In that case, all bets are off."

2. Believe it or not, God is powerful enough to handle the Supreme Court. Besides, the legal system isn't the only way to address abortion. Give God some credit. I think we can assume he has a few skills in the creativity department. It's absurd to say that we must elect a man who makes sexual liberty part of his brand in order to prevent abortion.

3. Christian leaders sometimes hurt women more than the predators. Let me put it this way: a woman is wounded when she is harassed or assaulted. She's wounded again when her self-proclaimed champions endorse a confessed predator for President. She's wounded yet a third time when those "champions" insist that she believe they are still her champions. That's an insult to her intelligence.

4. When pastors - not just remote leaders, but our own pastors - fail to lead the charge in defending a woman's honor and dignity, she feels so betrayed that she begins to believe that the whole idea of sexual purity was just a silly illusion and there's no honor to bother defending. The damage done in these circumstances is tremendous. Look, the possibility of ending up with a creepy lech for President is bad, but we've had that before. The thing that just devastates us is that this time, Christian leaders approve it.

5. Mormon men look like knights in shining armor on white steeds to a lot of women these days because they have not waffled in their unendorsement of Trump following the release of the Trump tapes and the surfacing of other things such as the time he humiliated a woman on stage at a beauty pageant. Christian men, your sisters-in-Christ are bleeding for want of loyalty from you. 

6. Those who say, "A vote for Trump doesn't indicate our approval of his character" have lost the right to tell anyone that actions speak louder than words.

7. When Christians communicate Jesus’ love for this woman and defend her dignity and sexual worthiness so passionately that she would bathe Christ's feet with her tears and wipe it with her hair, we're on the right track to the kingdom of God as well as the sanctity of life. When Christians endorse a man for President who rates her as a 10, 8, or maybe a 4, we're going to be stuck with sexual promiscuity and abortion for a long time.

8. In the wake of the Trump tapes, Kelly Oxford asked women on twitter to share their stories of sexual assault and within 3 days, she received 27 million responses with stories that ranged from fly-by gropings to outright rape. 27 millionI didn't tweet, but like almost every woman I know, I've been groped. Men, do you have any idea how common that is?  27 million is the number of wounded women's souls just on Twitter who need to hear how much God loves them and wants to dignify them. How many more beyond Twitter users? How are you ministering to them? I can tell you that no gospel message is credible if you sell my dignity for the paltry price of campaign promises made by a man who can't keep his marriage vows.

9. We have to protect our religious liberties, you say. There was no protection of religious liberty for first century Christian martyrs. Paul willingly abdicated his liberty at every turn for the sake of the gospel and thanked God for the honor of it. We 21st century Christians are no more special and deserving of protection than our first century forerunners. We are far less. God knows, we've had 2,000 years to finish what they started. Lord, have mercy.

10. We are charged by God to preserve the church - the spotless bride of Christ - until His return. He is jealous for her. This is a powerful metaphor that is is supposed to reflect the protection of a husband for his wife. But the metaphor is breaking down on both sides during this election. Christian husbands dishonor their wives by endorsing for the Presidency a man as blatantly misogynistic and unrepentant as Donald Trump. On the other side of the metaphor, when we support a man in the name of Christian purposes who disregards the things we believe are sacred, then we are not preserving the bride of Christ. Instead, we are like a medieval nobleman who marries his sister off to a boorish foreign prince for the sake of a political alliance. The bride of Christ is meant for the King of the empire and we are to defend her honor, dignity, and unity. Men, preserving unity means you don't blow off the worth of half the church.

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