Last post we talked about the basics of a wife's spots, wrinkles and blemishes. The next few sections will be delving deeper into each of these. Today we're talking about spots. More specifically, the spots that one's wife has picked up because of sexual impurities. I hope you're ready for a big bucket of bananas, because that's what's being served up today!
I apologise if this post is a bit long. I'm still on painkillers and that makes my thoughts very...expansive. :)
Text is in purple
2 Peter 3:14
Wherefore, beloved, seeing that ye look for such things, be diligent that ye may be found of him in peace, without spot, and blameless.
And of some have compassion, making a difference: And others save with fear, pulling them out of the fire; hating even the garment spotted by the flesh.
1 Timothy 6:14
That thou keep this commandment without spot, unrebukeable, until the appearing of our Lord Jesus Christ:
Once again, it seems that Michael just searched "spot" in the Bible and posted some scriptures that mention it. Because each verse, whilst mentioning the word "spot", is actually talking about different types of spots in different situations. Incidentally, none of them talk about cleansing the spots off one's wife.
For example, the Peter verse is talking about when Christ returns, and how the people should be blameless, and in good conscience with themselves and fellow men. Sure, part of this might be sexual "sins", but in general, it's talking about people feeling personally worthy to meet their Saviour again.
Here are some links to an interesting site that explain sort of what's going on in the other two verses. It's interesting that Bible scholars think these verses can refer to staying away from all sin, and yet Michael assumes that it means only the sexual ones. I guess things like jealousy, lust, envy, and murder are OK as long as the wife is putting out only to her legally wedded husband?
A woman who comes to marriage other than as a virgin is spotted. It matters not what others see; the stain is on her conscience. It affects her self-image. Even if her only fornication was with her eventual husband, the stain is the same, for the shame was hers before marriage and she did not leave it at the altar. A divorcee comes into marriage with many stains. A large number of women were molested when they were children, and that stain runs much deeper than the adult fornication stain.
So much wrong here, I don't know where to start! Once again, we see that, in Michael's head, only sexual sins count. And apparently they only count for the woman. Even if the woman's only fornication was with her eventual husband, she and only she bears the stain of it. Apparently forever. Isn't that odd? Both parties could have be in agreement about committing the fornication, but it's the woman's burden to bear forever. There is literally no mention of the man's part in this. Heck, even in "A Scarlet Letter", the man suffered.
I would like to point out that perhaps a good chunk the wife's self-image issues (if she has any), is this culture's insistence on 100% purity before and a sex goddess after. I grew up Mormon, and we've had plenty of lessons about how "fooling around" made you chewed gum, a licked cupcake, and a bitten candy bar. It's kind of ironic how these types of teachings actually can CAUSE sexual dysfunction after marriage. There's not a switch in your mind that goes from abstinence to orgasm that can be flipped after the "I do".
Also, the only "shame" that comes from premarital sex is that which is culturally construed. I think it's interesting that pre-marital sex is the same as marital sex in a divorcee. Even though they might have been perfectly chaste before the wedding, the simple fact that people are divorced makes them right up there with whores. I don't think anyone is actually expecting a divorcee to be a virgin, and yet Michael treats these people like they are trash. Which is odd, because he is very "SEX DURING MARRIAGE". And I'm guessing some of the people that followed his advice during marriage are the same people that he is condemning after their marriage fails! And again, no mention of the de-virginated ex-husband that women should stay away from.
Actually, this is an issue I noticed a lot in Mormondom as well. Divorced women (especially those with kids) had a MUCH harder time remarrying. It seemed like even if the man was divorced and older, he felt like he deserved a young virgin this time around, too.
The line about molested children is infuriating me. As a victim of childhood sexual abuse, it has taken me a long time to understand that it wasn't my fault. There was nothing I could have done, worn, or said that would have changed anything. Children cannot give consent because they don't have the capacity to understand the whole situation. While it is true that someone who was sexually abused can feel spotted or unclean, blaming them and saying they just need to get over it is not the way to help them! And insisting that they are unclean for something they had no choice in is so terribly, terribly wrong. Especially in this culture of men being right up there with God-expecting children to say "NO" to an authority figure is cruel. Not that that figure would take no for an answer...
For those of you who have been victimised-it's not your fault. It never was. You don't have to carry the shame of what they did to you forever. Please find a counselor or someone that you can talk to, because you deserve to be free of the past.
In our modern age, some girls are stained by sexting and immodest dress and behaviour, or exposure to sexually suggestive or explicit movies and music. Some girls come to marriage having experimented with homosexual acts in their early teens.
Oh look, fear mongering. In one paragraph, he covers texting, clothes, actions, music, movies, and friends. What a scary place to live in is PearlWorld! Nowhere is safe for these silly women-creatures that seem to try to go out of their way to find SEX!
Others will testify to none of the above, but the stain comes in little shades, thin layer after layer through their associations with unrighteous friends and peers. It is impossible to attend a public school and not be stained. When you touch something, it touches you, and every relationship is reciprocal. Lot lived in Sodom but did not share their immorality. Yet the Bible says Lot "vexed his righteous soul from day to day with their unlawful deeds. (2 Peter 2:8)"
Again, Michael refuses to acknowledge that men can attend public school, be spotted, or commit sexual sin. And it's interesting that children can be molested at home in PearlWorld, but public school is the main concern. Does that make sense? If Michael is saying that danger is everywhere, isn't it logical that there is equal danger at home?
Your wife may have a "vexed" soul. If she failed to "keep this commandment without spot" and now wears a "garment spotted by the flesh," with your help she can be "found of him in peace, without spot, and blameless." Jesus is the great washer of spotted garments, for I have personally witnessed thousands who have "washed their robes, and made them white in the blood of the Lamb. (Rev 7:14)" It is called the "washing of regeneration, and renewing of the Holy Ghost. (Titus 3:5)". The write of Hebrews asks a rhetorical question, "How much more shall the blood of Christ, who through the eternal Spirit offered himself without spot to God, purge your conscience from dead works to serve the living God? (Hebrews 9:14)"
If Jesus is the great washer of spots, then why is it the husband's job to cleanse his wife? Especially since he is equally spotted? That's like having a maid at your house ready to clean, and choosing to let the teenager who hasn't showered or cleaned his room in a month tidy up the house for a meeting with the President. It just doesn't make sense, no matter how many scripture verses Michael throws at us!
He who had no spot offered himself to God as a substitute for all who have soiled thier garments with sin and shame. He died as if he were the spotted one, suffering the full consequences of all sin. He now offers his unspotted robe in exchange for soiled ones. He bore our shame so we can bear his holiness. The God who "calleth those things which be not as though they were. (Romans 4:17)" stands ready and willing to call you and your wife spotless. It is not a matter of undoing the past or making amends. It is a free gift of righteousness that can be received without precondition.
If this gift of righteousness can be received without precondition, then why is their only advice on how to make the wives clean? If God is so generous as to hand out the unspotted robe, then shouldn't he have put in provisions on how BOTH parties can become unspotted? Oh wait. God did. Michael didn't. My bad. I get those two mixed up sometimes, don't you?
17-For if by one man's offence death reigned by one; much more they which receive abundance of grace and of the gift of righteousness shall reign in life by one, Jesus Christ.
18-Therefore as by the offence of one judgment came upon all men to condemnation; even so by the righteousness of one the free gift came upon all men unto justification of life.
19-For as by one man's disobedience many were made sinners, so by the obedience of one shall many be made righteous.
20-Moreover the law entered, that the offence might abound. But where sin abounded, grace did much more abound:
Oh. I see now how this works. Verse 19. Because of one man's obedience, a bunch more people will be made better. Interesting. Because Debi teaches in her book that by the woman being a Super-Christian and a submissive wife, she can convert her husband to God. Apparently by being a Super-Christian and wanting to cleanse his wife, a man can make her unspotted from her years of sexual abandon.
It is not a matter of doing; the work of redemption has already been done by Christ. You must believe to receive. It is not a matter of great faith; it is just a little faith placed in a big God that washes away spots and stains. Where your wife's sin (spots) abounds, your grace should much more abound as does Christ's.
Ugh. I don't see how telling men that their wives are spotted, impure, and stained will help them have more grace towards them. If anything, those teachings would make them less patient and gentle. "You did what as a teenager? How can I love you knowing you've lied to me? If you had really loved me, you would have waited for me."
Aren't those comments the natural result of telling someone that their partner is stained? How can you have compassion for someone you think PURPOSELY screwed up, and that screwup is hurting your life now? I just want to beat my head against a wall, because there is no logic here. Not even a basic grasp of how the psyche works. Kind of like you can't view someone as the weaker vessel and as equals at the same time, you can't view your partner as stained -and it is your job to cleanse them-without looking down on them a little.
If you thought this section was bad, just wait until next time. We talk about deep stains, and even have a letter from a rebellious woman who was...wait for it... made clean by her husband! Yippee.