Rather than reading the Bible through the eyes of modern secularism, this provocative six-part course teaches you to read the Bible through its own eyes—as a record of God’s dealing with the human race. When you read it at this level, you will discover reasons to worship God in areas of life you probably never before associated with “religion.”
Using a magazine article to illustrate pagan tactical use of language. Words and language are very deeply and profoundly spiritual. Satan cannot deceive by presenting bulk error; he always includes enough undeniable truth. Questions and answers.
The text for the Love Article is included at the bottom of the transcript for Lesson #139.
© Charles A. Clough 2000
Charles A. Clough
Biblical Framework Series 1995–2003
Part 5: Confrontation with the King
Chapter 4: The Death of the King
Lesson 140 – Critique of Love Article (cont’d)
17 Feb 2000
Fellowship Chapel, Jarrettsville, MD
Last time we started reviewing this article out of U.S. News and World Report and I said I wanted to use this as a tool to review how to use the Framework, so I want to cover two of the techniques that are used in the world system. Then I want to complete the article so we can get into the notes and get moving again in the material.
The first thing to remember that is involved in all these discussions, this is always involved, that anytime we’re involved in a discussion there’s certain baggage that’s brought to the table, and we talk about strategic envelopment, we’ve done this again and again, but it needs repetition. You cannot talk about any particular subject without setting it inside of a worldview. It’s either going to be a self-consciously thought through worldview or a sloppily, almost unperceived worldview, but worldview there will be. This article is an eloquent illustration of this.
We saw that the Apostle Paul used strategic envelopment at Athens in Acts 17; he used it again in Acts 14, in that when he went in to the people he immediately began discussing (quote) “religion” from within the Creator/creature distinction. He took it for granted. There’s no argument for that. That’s the presupposition of this whole approach that he used there. Then we said that besides the tactic of strategic envelopment there’s the tactical use of words. I should have said actually the tactical use of language and sentences in particular, it’s not just words, there are sentences. So we’ve got the strategic envelopment, and we’ve got the tactical use of language. In the tactical use of language we pointed out several things. One of those things is that words and language are very deeply and profoundly spiritual. We used Proverbs 1:23 to show that.
This was understood in the times of the Bible; it is not well understood in our time. For about 100-120 years we’ve lived in an intellectual climate that distinguishes between the written word and the spirit. And this is because we live in a highly mystical age, and the word is considered to be dry, dry orthodoxy, you’ve heard that term expressed. And the spirit is over here. That’s not Scriptural, because how do you explain passages like Proverbs 1:23 where it says listen to me while I pour out my spirit and make my words known. How do you explain that? That’s synonymous parallelism. That’s not bifurcation between the spirit and the word. One isn’t dead and the other alive. We showed parallels with Ephesians and Colossians; we went through that. My point in going through that was that when we talk about the tactical use of language and we gave those illustrations last week that it reminds us we’re in a spiritual conflict. Ultimately when ideas are bounced back and forth there’s spirits associated with those ideas. Ideas are not some little pieces of information that are just kind of like bits in a computer. That’s a very naïve way of looking at things. The Bible is far deeper than that; there is more to this than just surface information.
We gave some illustrations. We used such sentences as: even you could learn something that simple. An innocent looking sentence but full of accuse accusations. That’s a tactic we want to look at as we continue and finish critiquing this article.
We started in by noting that in the title of this U. S. News & World Report article you have the subtitle that says “It may be a many-splendored thing, but romance relies on Stone Age rules to get started.” We discussed that and we said that here’s a classic instance of strategic envelopment. In the tactical use of language in that sentence the topic appears to be love and romance. Actually what’s going on is there’s a strategic envelopment of the whole topic complete with an evolutionary frame of reference and the whole article actually has a deeper agenda. Whether it’s conscious, this guy who wrote it, Josh Fischman, whether he really thinks this way or not I don’t know, but we don’t have to argue that the man consciously chose to do this, because the god of this world is a deceiver, and he controls; he controls the mind of the unregenerate. He controls enough of our minds; leave alone the minds of the unregenerate. So it doesn’t have to mean that he consciously set out to do this, but whether the man set out to do this or not, that’s what the article, in fact, does.
We showed how everything is phrased within this evolutionary worldview; the classic instance on page 42 where the anthropologist doing the research says “the issue is: How do two bodies get close enough together to procreate?” That’s the issue as far as he’s concerned, because that is the issue in evolution, survival of the fittest, so all of that is taken for granted. The article doesn’t start out saying we will now discuss evolutionary theories application to love. It’s not stated that clearly and that’s why it’s so deceptive. You have to watch this and we have to guard and protect our children against this. This is going out all the time, on every subject that we can find. We went to Deut. 6 where we are instructed in our homes to teach children constantly in terms of Scripture. It doesn’t mean telling them Bible stories every waking hour. That’s not what Deuteronomy 6 is talking about. What it’s talking about is that whatever you speak of, whatever you do, put it and let it be enveloped inside a biblical frame of reference.
Let’s back up a moment and look at the subtitle again, and image if instead of the subtitle being what it is, imagine if we read the following: “Why we Fall in Love. It may be a many-splendored thing, but romance relies on the Creator’s design to get started.” What does that do immediately? It changes the whole discussion. What have I done? I’ve changed no more than six words in the sentence and in changing six words in that sentence we’ve totally altered the whole discussion, right from the start. The whole thing’s a completely different ballgame; we’ve gone football to baseball immediately, just altering six words in the subtitle. That shows the power of language.
If you’ve read this article you know that the whole thing is just basically about reproduction. Love and romance exists as triggers to further procreation to further survival of the fittest. That’s the whole theory, that’s the whole thing in it. What we want to do as we go through this and they make their points, this little piece of research did this, and this little piece of research did that, etc. we want to say what does the Scripture say? Always ask what saith the Scripture? Don’t let the idea just float in your mind. They’re dangerous, they float in your mind and they’ll corrupt, so you have to put them against Scripture, and sometimes you won’t know what Scripture says. That’s okay. At least you’re asking the right question, what does Scripture say? I don’t know what Scripture says on this subject but I’ve got to find out sometime. Maybe it will make you a better listener when the Bible is taught, because now you’ve got more questions that you want to find answers to, and it might make you a better reader of the Scriptures so when you read the Scripture, verse after verse, chapter after chapter, you’re looking for things that you know you need to know.
One of the things that we want to do when we approach this issue is go back to the framework and ask ourselves, in Scripture where do we encounter first the divine institution of marriage. We encounter it in creation, so let’s go back to Genesis 1 and 2, and let’s find out in Genesis 1 and 2 how God phrases the issue. Then armed with that we’re going to come back and see how clever a deception we’re facing here, because remember, Satan cannot deceive by presenting bulk error. Satan never deceives us … if we were total morons he probably could do it, he could probably deceive us by presenting bulk, gross, clear cut error. But most of us are a little more sophisticated than that, so Satan never comes in with bulk error. He always comes in with enough truth that’s undeniable so you can’t deny the truth part without really acting like you’re stupid or something. So what he tries to do is attach to the truth this entire enveloping framework so when you get into the truth all of a sudden you’re sucked in to the whole worldview that he’s packed with it.
Let’s go to the Scripture, Genesis 1:28-30, all the way back to original creation. I have in mind the sentence on page 42 that says “How do two bodies get close enough together to procreate?” The rest of it is all peripheral to that. We’ll show some of the peripheral stuff, but that’s the big idea, and that’s really the substance of this article. Genesis 1:28 is God’s address about procreation. “And God blessed them,” who did God bless first of all? Who is the “them?” “Them” is a pronoun, pronouns always refer to a previous noun, what is the antecedent of the pronoun “them?” Is it a singular pronoun, or is it a plural? It’s a plural pronoun; it refers back to two nouns. What are the previous nouns? They must be in the previous verses… sure enough, verse 26, “Let us make man in our image, according to our likeness; and let them rule over the fish of the sea and over the birds of the sky and over the cattle and over all the earth, and over every creeping thing that creeps on the earth.  And God created man in His own image, in the image of God He created him; male and female He created He them.” So the maleness and the femaleness that is described for man is described in this text differently than the procreation of animals. What marks off men from animals here? There are a lot of things that mark it off in the text. Let’s observe.
In verse 24 God makes the land animals, and He tells them, “Let the earth bring forth living creatures after their kind: cattle and creeping things and beasts of the earth after their kind, and it was so.  And God made the beasts of the earth after their kind, and the cattle after their kind, and everything that creeps on the ground after its kind; and God saw that it was good.  Then God said, ‘Let us make man in our image, according to our likeness,” so right away whatever this maleness and femaleness is in man, it is not the same as maleness and femaleness in animals. There is not the Continuity of Being, the idea that you have a scale and all of creation can be scaled off in degrees, there’s no qualitative difference, everything is just a quantitative difference. The Bible isn’t that way; the Bible says that reality is structured. There’s God, way up here, He’s the Creator, and under Him there is man, and below man there are animals. And the difference between man and animals is that man is created as an analogue of God, or what we said is that he is a theomorph, he is made in the form of God. It doesn’t say God is made in the form of man, it says man is made in the form of God, so it’s a theomorph. It’s not the other way around.
So you have man, made in God’s image. After that grand point is made, what is man said to do in verse 26, is he given a mandate merely to survive and out compete? What is the mission of the man? The mission of the man is to rule, to have dominion. So now we have something else, man is not only separated from the animal kingdom, he is the ruler of the animal kingdom. Ooh, how offensive today when we worship Mother Earth day, because of Dr. Professor White who years ago wrote this article and blamed Christianity for all the garbage in the world, very foolish because the Bible teaches stewardship. White was frankly wrong, historically he is incorrect; the Christian worldview stresses stewardship over the creation. The place where Christianity interacts with ecology in the environment is precisely the area where they don’t want to listen, which is what? That we made the entire universe a junkyard by our sin. Oh, we’re not that responsible for the environment, oh no, we can’t tolerate that level of responsibility. We don’t want to talk about ecology that radically. But the Bible teaches that we are to have dominion, with all due respect to PETA and all the rest of the groups.
So here we have the reproduction in order to do what? To reproduce, in order to reproduce, in order to reproduce? Or is it to reproduce the rulers in history. The cosmic reason is to build a population of godly men and women who will rule. That’s the purpose of the procreation, it’s not to survive, and it’s not to pass the genes on. There’s a higher purpose involved here. The genes themselves are only to serve a purpose.
We come to Genesis 2 and we have the situation where man is starting to dominate, starting to rule, and in verse 19 God allows him to start naming, starting to understand his environment. In verse 18, “Then the LORD God said, ‘It is not good for the man to be alone,” and in verse 18 He defines the male and the female at the high level of the image of God, not at the low level of the animals procreation. It says “It is not good for the man to be alone; I will make a helper suitable for him.’” The picture, remember, is that God gave a call to Adam. Even wasn’t around when that call came, the instructions of what Adam was to do in the garden were given before Eve was there. The call came to the man. But the man, the male, solitary male being alone could not fulfill the calling, so here is a marvelous thing. We have the call of God which is impossible for the single solitary man to execute without a helper; the word “helper” here is not a diminutive term, it is the same word, Azar, that is used for God, God is my Azar, Eliaser. What does that mean? Eli is El=God, e=my God, Azar=my helper, My God is my helper. That’s the word that’s used for the female here. So she is brought in and the man has to go out and figure out that he can’t execute the plan without somebody there that’s competent to help him execute the plan so he has to have the female.
What is he executing? Getting his genes passed to the next generation? Is that the call of Adam? I don’t notice anything about genes here. Do you see anything about genes in verse 18? For that matter, anywhere in Genesis 1-2? God just says go out and make babies so the babies can make babies so the babies can make babies and more babies. Is that what this is all about? No. There’s a purpose for man, and the reproduction is to produce the godly family to rule the cosmos. That’s the setting.
There’s something else here. Man is to produce fruit from the creation. Remember the garden, he’s to tend it, and he is to produce. So let’s look at the production. God sets forward in His creation designs that are revelatory. God forbid they should ever teach this in public school, but when you deal with mathematics, language, music, art, science, physics, chemistry, biology, what are you dealing with? Creation structures. Whose handiwork is that? God’s handiwork. Learning in any of these areas is what we were made to do to produce out of this universe that God put us in fruit to His glory. That’s what we’re supposed to be doing. And that’s the purpose of our life, to produce that sort of fruit. Involved, of course, in that is a profound worship of God, and out of that comes moral character and integrity. All of that is involved. Now here’s the catch; there is an analogy between the production of man and the production of animals. And it’s this analogy that is a tool and a channel of deception, because these investigators, being anthropologists, psychologists and biologists that are quoted in this article, see this parallelism. There’s very strong parallelism physiologically, anatomically, between animals and men. So what do we make of that analogy as Christians, Bible-believing Christians. How do we integrate that with the text?
If man is made in God’s image and animals are not made in God’s image, then it follows that what is the same about animals and what is the same about men must have some revelatory function, so when plants and animals reproduce the very method of production becomes a physical and temporal revelation of this spiritual production that God has wanted from eternity past for His creatures. The physical structures are analogues to the spiritual truths. This is not some hokey-pokey kind of excuse. We all know from reading the New Testament what is the marriage institution revelatory of? Every wedding we go through the same text, same thing, always in the New Testament, and what are we talking about? Christ and the church. Does that have to do with cats, dogs and doves? No, that has to do with the heart of God’s plan for His cosmos.
So let’s try something that will really stress … I mean this takes brilliant IQ to do this, 200 IQ level to make this deduction. God is designing these physical pictures in order to point where? Is the arrow pointing down from man and saying look man, you go down here to learn, so that you can come back up here? NO. What we do is we go down here, we see certain things in the light of the Lord, the Creator, and we come back here. We actually are coming up; we are saying look at what God has designed down here that is an analogue to the truths up here. It’s what I call top-down thinking. The article is all bottom-up thinking. The article establishes the truths down at the animal level and tries to raise them for insights into the human level. You see that in sentence after sentence in this article. Yet as Christians that is exactly opposite to what we’re supposed to be doing. We are to think God’s thoughts after Him, and we are to take His thoughts that are higher than the highest mountains and bring them down into the valleys of our experience so that we can enjoy Him. So we are top-down thinkers; the unregenerate is a bottom-up thinker.
Let’s continue in the article and see how this works out—tactical use of language. It’s all through the article. I’ve tried with a highlighter to go through the article and I’ve got most of the article highlighted, because I was going to highlight every place that I could find an example of the tactical use of language. What I should have done is highlight the places in green that are free of it. He goes on, the paragraph, “And then the talk flows more easily …” and then this couple gets involved, and the last sentence is that paragraph, “And to promises to have and to hold, forever and ever,” a little sarcastic remark about marriage. Now watch the bottom-up thinking. What he does here in transitioning from the last sentence of that paragraph to the first sentence of the next one is he sets marriage as something to be explained and gather insights from the animal level—bottom-up. We first get our insights here and then we carry them up. What does Paul do in Ephesians about marriage? He gets in the high order of the Trinity and brings them down.
He says, in the first sentence in the next paragraph, “This is all well and good. But beneath love’s ineffable mysteries and majesty,” notice the preposition “beneath,” “beneath love’s ineffable …” in other words, the foundation of it all is not God and the structures of His Word, but beneath it all “there lie some basic principles of biology and genetics. Mother Nature,” notice it’s capitalized, one must always revere deity, “Mother Nature casts her strong shadow over much of that initial activity that sparks the cascade of events leading to love. Flirting, for example, has rules that cross cultures and countries, based on gestures that seem,” now this is good, I love how this goes, “Flirting,” we’re talking about flirting now, and we just can’t avoid getting Darwin involved in flirting, we’ve just got to trot in the evolutionary worldview in the middle of the flirting. So the sentence reads “gestures that seem anchored deep within our evolutionary history.” We supposed to read this with a spooky voice now.
We go on, “And those gestures, scientists are now discovering, following codes of attraction” this is the sentence I pointed out last time, this is really a ripper when you think about this one, “codes of attraction and beauty that may be millions of years old. Those codes, in turn, have evolved” and I pointed out now isn’t that stupid, did you ever see a code that evolves? Did you ever see a computer program evolve and still work? Again, this is all metaphor, it’s cheap metaphor, but it’s all manipulatory, very manipulating. And if you don’t learn proper kinds of literacy to unravel this you’d be a victim. Yes, you can laugh at it, but you’ve got to know why you’re laughing at it.
Let’s go on further and see some more of how this tactical use of language occurs. This is another interesting sentence. “Men, for instance, have been drawn to certain-size hips and waists for more than 20,000 years.” Now isn’t that interesting, I wonder where they got that information from. Did they take measurements of Neanderthal? For 20,000 years, you’d think this would be documented somewhere. It isn’t, there’s no documentation of this. This is just a statement. What they observe is a behavior and then they attribute it to a 20,000-year history. That’s not the way it is. But watch what’s happening here. There’s no argumentation, it’s just put in connotation. It’s argument by connotation, never directly addressed. Not once in this article is the truthfulness of the evolutionary worldview ever dealt with in explicit fashion. It’s all taken for granted, and that’s what makes it so insidious. If you don’t think this is insidious, turn it around, go home and rewrite parts of this article as you would write if you were the Christian writer. Write it biblically and watch what happens when you get done writing it. Then put them side by side, both articles talking about exactly the same subject and you come away with two totally different spirits. Why? This is the power of the Word.
Look at the next one discussing a couple. They talk about the guy’s reaction. “… researchers contend has come deeply rooted biology behind it; that waist and hip size is better linked to having babies than is a less curvaceous figure.” I’ve never noticed that in any romantic novel or any great novel, the only time I can remember reading anything like this was G. Gordon Liddy’s book Will, when he deliberately married a wide-hipped German lady because he wanted strong boys. I’ve never heard a guy think of mixing his genes and picking out his girlfriend on the basis of what genetic materials she carried.
Nevertheless, this is the intent of these authors, that all of the higher functions of man don’t count, it’s all down here, bottom-up thinking. We first explain it down here, and then we explain the higher in terms of the lower. People … that’s exactly wrong! What are we taught in the Christian life, when we encounter all the grunge in our lives? Do we go from bottom-up? Or are we supposed to take the truths of God and the truths of His Word, the big plans of God, and bring them down to our situation, claiming the promises of God? Take Romans 8:28, “All things work together for good to them love God, to them that are called according to His purpose.” Called according to what? “Called according to His purpose.” Who’s doing the calling, his genes? God is doing the calling. So right there, see the very structure of that promise, its top-down thinking. This is of the earth; this is bottom-up thinking.
It goes on, we can cite sentence after sentence, but look at this one, I love this expression, “… the name of the game of life—in the long run—is to move your genes into succeeding generations.” Like I said, this would not make a good wedding service. “Millions of years ago, human ancestors had to find a mate to do this without help from Internet dating services,” well isn’t that good, “DNA analysis, social clubs, or village matchmakers. All they had to go on was outside appearance.” This is all conjecture, absolutely all conjecture, there’s not one argument in here for the proof of this. It’s just piled up, sentence after sentence after sentence. And do you know the sad thing is, as poorly educated as we are in our generation today a kid or an adult can read this and walk away thinking, you know, that guy had some good points. Let’s go on.
It says, “After all, mating with a creature who produces sickly children, or who dies before raising them, is a fast trip down an evolutionary dead end.” Now watch how he follows that. “Birds, with their elaborate plumage, actually figured this one out long before humans did.” Now isn’t that … go to your bird feeder and have a discussion with all the lessons that the sparrows and starlings have learned and they’ll share with you all these insights that they’ve had in the past. See how stupid this is when you start unraveling it. It’s just one continuous … that’s why I picked this article out; this has got to be a classic. It goes on and it talks about evolutionary advantages, etc.
What I want to do to finish out the article, there’s another quote, “So it makes sense, from the long-term view of evolutionary success, to be most attracted to fertile youth.” Let’s think about something here. There is a truth to the fact that God’s creatures were designed to produce and survive in history, to over-produce because of the fall and everything else. But why? Why is that design in there? Not so that they can survive in the evolutionary term, but rather that the kingdom of God can come, that this great family of mankind can be taught to rule and subdue the earth. That’s what makes the difference.
Notice the paragraph that starts, “There are several signals about safety that remain constant from Spokane to Bali, and from people to apes, indicating their evolutionary importance,” see how everything is structured in order to produce evolutionary advantages. Keep that in mind because we’re going to draw a moral conclusion shortly. I want you to be convinced that this author is making his case that you evaluate good and bad behavior with your bottom-up thinking. The good and the bad, good equals what? Good is what survives, that’s the highest good, what survives. And what’s bad? The evolutionary dead, non-survival. Now look at this one. “The shoulder shrug is a prime example,” did you ever see a cat shrug their shoulder. I never have. “The reflex is a sign of uncertainty, part of an age-old startle response intended to protect the vulnerable neck. A chagrined Bill Clinton did it on national television when he apologized for his illicit relationship with Monica Lewinsky, the anthropologist notes.”
“A tilted head uses some of these same muscles and nerve circuits.” Watch this one; we’re talking about gestures that go back millions of years. “And why is that?” the psychologist asks. No sooner does the behavioral psychologist ask the question but he has a friend over here, he’s a professor of biology and he says I’ve got the answer for you Mr. Psychologist. So the psychologist turns to the biologist, one expert to another, and now in this sentence the expert biologist is brought into the discussion, in physiology. “Both gestures, using muscles and nerve circuits that can be traced back through millions of years of animal history and seen in animals today, are signs of withdrawal, not what you’d see in a prelude to an attack. Nor is holding your hands palm up, as one of the men talking to the dark-haired woman in Havanas does. The gesture is controlled by neural circuits found in anatomy as simple as fish brains and spinal cords, so it even predates palms.”
What’s the point here? It’s very clever how they’re doing this. How did the biologist make the conclusion that those circuits, those neuro circuits are primary? Because there’s [a] parallel in the design between animals—same designer. You know most cars have four wheels; that’s why Volkswagens evolved from Dodges. We see that there’s a parallelism between animals, so he goes to the most simple animal first, picks the parallel, and then discards the rest. Now he’s building inferences from an inference. The inference is that I explain similarity by evolutionary descent rather than explain it how? How do we as Christians explain similarity? The same designer. But he has chosen to phrase …, enveloping, see frame of reference, here’s strategic envelopment, we’ve enveloped our topic in an evolutionary frame of reference, so what do we not have available any longer? We can’t explain the similarities in terms of common design so we have to explain the similarities in terms of temporal descent over time. And if we do that when it’s ordered to the primitive things, that’s why you can come to the end of the sentence and it says “fish brains and spinal cords … predate palms.” Fishes don’t have hands; they represent an earlier evolution. But they do share spinal columns. So that means a spinal column is more primitive in the most advanced creature. All that’s saying is that’s the evolutionary premise. I’ve heard that 150 times, I haven’t heard any proof of it, I’ve just heard it repeated endlessly in the article.
Now we come down to the end, and to watch how things conclude turn to the last page. I don’t know whether the authors… the more I read this article the more I can’t help but think there’s a tongue in cheek to this whole thing, that the authors may have intended. But if you follow the logic, what did I say? I said that in an evolutionary basis, what is good and evil? How do you define good and evil? Good is what survives, evil is what doesn’t survive. By the way, does anyone see the moral flaw in that argument? Right there there’s a moral flaw. Why is surviving good? Lots of people commit suicide; they don’t believe surviving is good. They believe taking their life is better. So, why is it obvious, intuitively, that surviving is good? Where are you getting that from? This is a moral imposition, this is how morals and ethics are rooted in worldviews, and why it does matter what you believe, and it does matter what worldview is taught because it affects your ethical judgments.
We have that to contend with. We’ve made the point that man is just a developed animal, and we know that animals have stimulus response. What about men? What do we know that’s different because we are made in God’s image? How do we plot the stimulus response equation for us? It’s stimulus choice response, that is the first divine institution, that is what separates man from animals; it’s called free will. By the way, if you’re an atheist you can’t believe in free will. So here you have a case where all this is set up. Now we come to the grand finale of the article, the fight over the evolution of rape. What have I said? Remember you’ve heard me say if you want to learn unbelief, don’t get it from a sloppy Christian campus. Go to an unbeliever that’s skilled, that has the courage to take his unbelief and his paganism out to its logical conclusion. You can learn so much from an honest articulate pagan. You’ve got to find one and make a friend because they’ll teach you a lot about this, if you can’t find one in reality in person, find a good book, read some of the great atheists of history because they really will teach you something.
These people who have written a book, published by MIT, A Natural History of Rape, and the argument simply is that rape is part of our evolutionary heritage. Who’s stronger physically, male or female? Not emotionally but physically. Here we’ve been talking yak, yak, yak, yak for five pages about evolution, there’s no romance in love. Remember the Q&A, we can cut all that out because fish don’t have romance but they have reproduction, so that’s the most basic thing, bottom-up thinking. Now all of a sudden we’re faced with an oh-oh, where does this lead us?
Down what primrose path are we traversing now? And sure enough, these authors have been smart enough to see, oh, let’s take this a little further friends, and what they’re arguing, “Biologist Randy Thornhill, and anthropologist Craig Palmer, in a new book that’s become a lightning rod for controversy, argue that rape has evolved, over millions of years, as a strategy to help men reproduce.” What did we say was good? What did we define good to be? Now what are you going to do with this? See why this book has become so controversial. You set this thing up stupid, and now you have to live with the consequences; you don’t like them do you, but you can’t do anything about it.
[blank spot] … relating to the whole idea. So in the first paragraph, we have the feeling of incense on the part of the women. “They’re saying men evolved to be rapists? Teri Gutierrez cries incredulously. That’s absurd. Women are getting seriously hurt and they’re saying that it’s evolution?” Yes as a matter of fact Teri, that’s what they’re saying. That’s what they learned in 6th grade biology class, I believe. Creationists wanted to say something and couldn’t say it in biology class, so you teach the guys in biology about survival of the fittest, you implicitly program them year after year in this framework, what’s your problem if they draw the conclusion? What’s the problem here? Well, I don’t like it. Hon, what you like and what you don’t like has nothing to do with it. You might not like hot water but we still have hot water.
If your only opposition is you don’t like it, that’s not an opposition, I don’t care if you like it or not, maybe I do. So you’re in a very weak position to say that must be wrong because I don’t like it. What’s wrong with that thinking? Because you’re not appealing to a transcendent standard, you’re just saying it’s your personal subjective dislike to be hurt. Sure, cats don’t like to be hurt either, dogs don’t like to be hurt, horses don’t like to be hurt. It’s painful, but how do you show it’s bad. You can’t, unless you have a standard that you’re bringing into the discussion, and the standard went out with this. It got shot, it got kicked out of the house with the first step, now we’re living in the house and now we don’t like what we’re living in the house with, do we?
This whole end of this article is tremendous, and they go through all the mealy-mouth ways of trying to side-step it, well I don’t like that and I don’t think they’ve proved their case and all the rest of it. They don’t have to prove their case; all they have to do is show the worldview exists. This worldview leads to that conclusion.
We want to conclude with some Scriptures that show how the Word of God speaks to what we have spent two evenings going through. We’ve taken an article by a modern group of writers in one of the best-selling magazines in the United States, and I don’t think this is atypical. U.S. News & World Report, Time Magazine, and Newsweek, don’t sell as magazines because they are way out on the left or the right. Those magazines are being designed, sold, written, and published to sell numbers and you’ve got to sell and pitch it to the center of the population. So these articles are written to what our culture wants to hear. They have to be, they wouldn’t sell the magazine if it wasn’t that way; that’s stupid, pragmatism, follow the money. So they pitch these articles to the way our society and our neighbors and our institutions think. And this is how they think.
Let’s look at a series of Bible verses. We said that there’s a technical term the Scriptures use to describe what we’re talking about, the deceptions of this world’s thinking are called in the Scripture “vanity.” What is the one book in the Bible that is the most thorough exposition of vanity? Ecclesiastes. Proverbs 26:4-5, at first this is one of those so-called contradictions in the text, it’s not a contradiction in the text, this is the way young men and young women were taught in these days. They were taught largely by means of proverbs. It required… they did not have to have formal literacy, they could memorize these, but they were passed on from father to son, father to son, for generations after generations after generations. Solomon enscripturated these in his own time at the height of this wisdom school in Israel.
Verse 4, “Do not answer a fool according to his folly, lest you also be like him.” What that means, among other things, is that when you answer, don’t start on the same set of presuppositions as the fool or you will become just like him. You cannot answer these authors of this article on what their view of romance is while you’re still accepting the basis from which they’re proceeding. If you believe in your heart that the evolutionary worldview is basically correct, somehow you’ve managed to mishmash the Bible along with that, don’t try to argue with these people because if you try to argue with them and try to take this worldview you’re going to come right out on the same path, you will become like them. So Proverbs warns us, “Do not answer a fool according to his foolishness, lest you become like him.” Okay, that goes back, remember a simple thing, don’t answer a question until you’ve thought about it. A simple illustration, how many times last week did you beat your wife? You can’t answer the question without condemning yourself. Why? Because you ran into a trap, you’ve bought in to the whole way the question was designed in the first place. You’re not obligated to accept the basis of the question; you have a right to redefine the question, claim it, it’s your privilege in conversation.
The next verse looks like it conflicts with the previous verse; it says “Answer a fool as his folly deserves, lest he be wise in his own eyes.” What that’s talking about is what Francis Schaeffer developed back in the 70s when he said one of the things that you can often do when you’re dealing, even in your own mind with your own flesh and it wants to do something, you quote Scripture against it and it’s like water off a duck’s back, it doesn’t work. A technique to use in that situation is to simply turn right around and say okay, if I do this, where is it going to lead? Take it to the logical conclusion. What did we do with this article? [We] took it to the logical conclusion. It leads to rape. Duh! Why do we do that? Because we’re not, apparently … apparently we’re not bringing the Bible in to set up defense mechanisms. We haven’t mentioned the Bible, haven’t mentioned it once, all we’re saying, oh, that’s an interesting view, let’s see if I understand that. That means if I believe that, then I should be able to do this, and this, and this, oh, you say I can’t do that, why is it that I can’t do that? That’s what you’re doing, you’re pulling out of the deception and exposing it by showing its foolishness when you keep on operating in that direction.
So that’s the point of this verse, “Answer a fool as his folly deserves, lest he be wise in his own eyes.” See, what that does, it gets to them because now humility is forced up. He can be prideful of his viewpoint and if you attack him directly, pride will put up a shield. But if you say, well I want to understand how you really think, I want to get inside your head, and say well now if I believe this way, then can I do this, or can I do that, or doesn’t this lead to this. Now the problem is he can’t really attack you because it’s his position, and he doesn’t want to be put in the position of attacking himself. So it’s a humbling type of approach. Sometimes you have to do this, and sometimes it’s very hard to do, and sometimes it takes a long time to do, because if you think about sanctification in your own personal life, isn’t that how God does it, often times? We ignore Him, we turn our backs on Him, He doesn’t turn His back on us, but instead of dealing with us directly He says okay, I’ll cut you some slack, I’ll cut you some more, I’ll cut you some more, oh, you’re in the ditch now, gee, how did you get there? How did God work with the prodigal son? Want to go to the pigpen? Do you like the pigs, okay, have a ball, take a vacation down there, spend all your money, see how you like it. So God we find in His sanctifying work operates exactly the same way. Why? Because He’s a wise guy and this is His wisdom.
Turn in the New Testament to 1 Timothy 6:20. This is just to kind of conclude with learning about vanity and learning about these silly beliefs that permeate our culture. We don’t face something that earlier Christians didn’t also face. Look at this closing admonition to young pastor Timothy, “O Timothy, guard what has been entrusted to you, avoiding worldly and empty chatter and the opposing arguments of what is falsely called ‘knowledge.’ ” Did you notice throughout this whole article they were always quoting research? “Research has shown,” and it’s all behavioral psychology, that kind of thing, research … oh, this is knowledge, this is knowledge! What does Paul say? It’s knowledge in name but not in substance. It’s knowledge that is “falsely called knowledge.” You see, when you start thinking about this, the Bible is very radical, extremely radical and extremely skeptical. I always love to hear unbelievers say I’m skeptical when they are the most naïve people … naïve people that haven’t examined their own belief systems, and you’re telling me that you’re skeptical. You haven’t seen my skepticism yet. And this is divine biblical skepticism, knowledge falsely so-called.”
2 Timothy 2:24, this is advice to Timothy and about teaching Christians, teaching us, and it’s to deal with the issue of getting slammed. “And the Lord’s bond-servant must not be quarrelsome,” in other words, not going around and arguing for the sake of arguing, “must not be quarrelsome, but be kind to all, able to teach, patient when wronged,  with gentleness” doing what? “correcting those who are in opposition; if perhaps God may grant them repentance leading to the knowledge of the truth.” What he’s saying is we have to strive not to get angry in the flesh, but we are not to be doormats, and we are not to be passive. The church has more passive people than any other segment of society. It’s just amazing in this country. We talk, talk, talk, talk, talk, talk about oh, what’s going on in this country … you know, if half the Christians would go down and register to vote instead of 10%, and put their feet where their mouth is, we wouldn’t have half the problems. We can’t even get people to register to vote, and then they’ll spend 364 days of the year fussing about what’s going on in the country.
So here’s an example. It’s saying you take your stand, you think out on the basis of the Word of God, you be ready to teach, which means you have to have a lesson plan and you have to think about it and pray about what you’re going to say, and don’t be afraid to correct those who are in opposition. Yes you’ll be castigated, yes you will be laughed at, called narrow-minded and all the rest of it, but I’ll tell you what, I’ve found in my experience that people who come to know the Lord through your taking a stand are eternally grateful to you. You talk about being accepted, people who are led to the Lord because you had the courage to stand firm, take all the hits, take all the gross remarks, take all the junk, but you held firm and you corrected those who are in opposition. It doesn’t matter what they say with their big mouths, their conscience agrees with you. If you are articulating the Word of God, no matter what they say with their mouth, their conscience bears witness to what you’re saying is true. So just ignore all the hot air, it’s just hot air and bologna, just constantly go for the conscience, go for the conscience, go for the conscience. Grace and truth, grace and truth, grace and truth!
We had one good contribution, that if you have the article, look at the last page of the article, and what do you see? I didn’t notice this, this is good. There’s a little fine, in small print, down at the bottom, the last page, does it say anything about romance there, does it say anything about love there? No. “For more information about evolution genetics …” so what were they peddling all the time? This is a great article to train on.
Question asked, something about so they can propagate the species: Clough replies: I don’t think there are many men doing that, by the way. [Person says something else about global consciousness, Mother Nature consciousness, and you think of the Christians and you get accused of being a mindless automaton, now who’s the mindless automaton when people don’t even know that they’re being attracted to somebody …] Clough says: But it’s an evolutionary thing, and if you think about it, that yes, the article has made the point that there’s super mystical evolutionary thing that’s working in the heart of all that supposedly draws people together. Well, there’s something that in truth corresponds to that that we’re all very conscious of as Christians. What is that? The calling of God. It’s a sovereign calling of God.
Same guy says something: Clough replies: What I’m just trying to say is these deceptions are counterfeits of something; they’re not just wholesale creation … Satan is really not too original. What he does is he perverts something that is actually true. Whereas we could say when we meet our mates that we’ve been brought to them, and we can say oh well, I saw them and we can narrate it on a human level, but as Christians we have to acknowledge but God’s sovereignty was involved in all of that, that we didn’t know about. So that that call of God, that sovereign working in our lives, that’s what’s being perverted here, and you have to have something to replace it, so what you have it this esoteric, spooky, evolutionary drive that is subliminal or something.
Same guy says something: Clough says: There’s also a prophetic crown because the crown that man ultimately gets is with Jesus Christ, because Psalm 8 is the very quote taken in Hebrews to describe Jesus as the Second Adam, because Jesus successfully fulfills the destiny of the human race. And isn’t this interesting that Jesus Christ does it and He’s never married. He must have forgotten to propagate, didn’t get His genes in. How does Jesus pull it off? It has nothing to do with His genes. Here’s the God-man who’s our model; He fulfills the calling of God and genes aren’t involved. Something else is propagated that’s analogous to genetic propagation, because what does 1 John say? His “what” dwells in us? His seed dwells in us. So there’s an analogy in regeneration that Jesus does propagate Himself in history, but in a different way than what you think. So the biological propagation is a physical analogue to this other thing that goes on.
Same guy says how does that relate to …: Clough says: Jesus is of Abraham’s seed that way, backwards, up to, but that’s because of the promise of God in Abraham’s life. By the way, what was Abraham’s first seed, the godly seed? Was it by natural propagation? In one sense it was but he and Sarah couldn’t propagate, so what went on there. See, the whole structure, every part of the story conflicts, we’re in total collision on this point.
Same guy says something else about the comment he just brought out, something about changing the title of the article to get a lot of people to read it: Clough replies: They might have done that, I don’t know. [Same guy says something about man exercising his sovereignty over nature, did I hear you talk about that in relation to our reign with Christ] Clough: Yes, because ultimately what is said of Jesus is that all things have not been put under His feet, but eventually all things will be put under His feet, the whole creation, not just planet earth, that little mandate in Genesis 1 concerns the plants, the fish and the bees, that’s the first set, the first stage of this, but man’s rule is to exercise dominion over the whole universe. Jesus Christ starts it, so there’s a lot to that, and we’re going to learn through all eternity. This is why eternity cannot be conceived as, you know, you sit in church service for a billion years, it’s going to be active ruling, active doing things, it doesn’t stop just because we’re in eternity. What’s different is we don’t live in a sinful environment anymore, but the fact is that there’s worship and work to do.
Next week we’re going to get back into the death of Christ. This is a rather difficult section. I don’t apologize for it because it’s an issue that has to be discussed. Some of you have people that are very strong in the Reformed faith, some of you have friends that are in the Methodist Church or the Arminian-type churches and they have one view and the Reformed people have another view, so you need to know what’s going on with this.