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Christianity presents a glorious vision for culture, a vision overflowing with truth, beauty, and goodness. It’s a vision that stands in stark conflict with the anemic modern (and postmodern) perspectives that dominate contemporary life. Medieval Christianity began telling a beautiful story about the good life, but it was silenced in mid-sentence. The Reformation rescued truth, but its modern grandchildren have often ignored the importance of a medieval grasp of the good life. This book sketches a vision of Medieval Protestantism, a personal and cultural vision that embraces the fullness of Christian truth, beauty, and goodness.
We live in a time when marital fidelity is under assault. Driven by the forces of relativism, our society assaults sexual fidelity on numerous fronts. The push for homosexual marriages, for example, come at the end of the fall into perversion, not the beginning. Faithless husbands began the fall long ago, and our culture, with all its washed-out self-help books, fails to address the real problem – sin.
Addressed to men, Fidelity hits hard, using clear language, focusing on specific sins with specific solutions: adultery, divorce, polygamy, celibacy, pornography, and more. But in the end, the antidote to all sexual temptation is simple – the godly honoring of the marriage bed: “Marriage is honourable in all, and the bed undefiled: but whoremongers and adulterers God will judge.” (Heb. 13.4)
The swooning Victorian ladies and the 1950s housewives genuinely needed to be liberated. That much is indisputable. So, First-Wave feminists held rallies for women’s suffrage. Second-Wave feminists marched for Prohibition, jobs, and abortion. Today, Third-Wave feminists stand firmly for nobody’s quite sure what. But modern women — who use psychotherapeutic antidepressants at a rate never before seen in history — need liberating now more than ever. The truth is, feminists don’t know what liberation is. They have led us into a very boring dead end.
Eve in Exile sets aside all stereotypes of mid-century housewives, of China-doll femininity, of Victorians fainting, of women not allowed to think for themselves or talk to the men about anything interesting or important. It dismisses the pencil-skirted and stiletto-heeled executives of TV, the outspoken feminists freed from all that hinders them, the brave career women in charge of their own destinies. Once those fictionalized stereotypes are out of the way — whether they’re things that make you gag or things you think look pretty fun — Christians can focus on real women. What did God make real women for?
“Well-researched…this book has enough sass to keep it lighthearted, and lots of vision about building the culture of the home and bringing dignity instead of disgrace to the vocations of wife and mother.” –~Touchstone Magazine
“A total pleasure. This book is an excellent treatise on both society s and current cultural Christianity s view on women gone wrong and how we should fix it… I laughed. I cried. I highlighted. I wanted to high-five someone several times while reading this.” ~Summer White Jaeger, co-host of Sheologians
“This is my new go-to recommendation for a book on biblical femininity. Merkle is excellently nuanced and not inappropriately prescriptive, while still being clear and unshrinkingly scripture-based. –~Rachel Schultz, author and blogger at On Homemaking
“Winsome, witty, and conversational, Eve in Exile is also a grand and inspiring call for women to reject the selfish pursuits of feminism and give their lives away to serve family and home for the sake of Christ.” ~Nicole Mahaney Whitacre, co-author of Girl Talk and True Beauty
“Fresh and edifying perspective on a woman s role in the world. Without relying on any of the usual mommy-blog tropes, Merkle gives us a reason to be truly excited about what we get to do and be as Christian women living in the 21 century.” –~Tilly Dillehay, author and blogger at While We Wait: Practical Theology for Busy Pilgrims
God has designed each family to be a culture – with a language, customs, traditions, and countless unspoken assumptions. The culture of the family intimately shapes the children who grow up in it. It is the duty of the father to ensure that the shaping takes place according to biblical wisdom.
Some fathers establish a rebellious culture for their children and bring upon their children the wrath of God., sometimes for generations. Other fathers fail to establish any distinct culture, and outside cultures rust to fill the void.
Through the Messiah, God promised blessings to His people, “their children, and their children’s children forever.” The norm for faithful members of the covenant is that their children will follow them in their faithfulness. The oddity should be children who fall away. Unless we reestablish faithful Christian culture in countless homes, we will never reestablish it anywhere else.
Satire is a kind of preaching.
Satire pervades Scripture.
Satire treats the foibles of sinners with a less than perfect tenderness.
But if a Christian employs satire today, he is almost immediately called to account for his “unbiblical” behavior. Yet Scripture shows that the central point of some religious controversies is to give offense. When Christ was confronted with ecclesiastical obstinacy and other forms of arrogance, he showed us a godly pattern for giving offense.
In every controversy godliness and wisdom (or the lack of them) are to be determined by careful appeal to the Scriptures and not the fact of people having taken offense. Perhaps they ought to have taken offense, and perhaps someone ought to have endeavored to give it.
Obergefell v. Hodges and the legalization of gay marriage was wonderful — in that it’s now forcing every Christian to decide whether their allegiance is to the Supreme Court or to the Supreme Being. In every other way, Obergefell was terrible.
Same-Sex Mirage starts with the fundamentals of marriage and then traces the effects of this foundational institution in every area of life. Is marriage a private matter — an agreement before God alone? Or is it public — a matter for legislation?
Obergefell was a disaster for our nation. And, as with every disaster, the biggest benefit is in understanding how we Christians ignored all warnings and let it happen.
In this lively reading of Ecclesiastes, Doug Wilson reveals its powerful lessons of vanity, joy, celebration, and the sovereignty of God.