For those new to EE, ‘The Cultural Thermometer’ is a post in which I link to interesting stuff I have come across recently, along with some very brief commentary as time allows. It’s kind of my way of keeping tabs on where our world is headed. I hope you find it helpful. I also intend to highlight some great blog posts and free internet audio. Don’t forget to check out Tyler’s review of the new documentary Expelled and to take our final church history quiz.
- Just Roommates – When I first read that several Colleges are now allowing young women and men to room together, I thought it was simply a bow to the reality of widespread presence of premarital sex on college campuses. Though that would be concerning enough, these colleges clearly have a deeper agenda: Now, some colleges are crossing the final threshold, allowing men and women to share rooms. At the urging of student activists, more than 30 campuses across the country have adopted what colleges call gender-neutral rooming assignments, almost half of them within the past two years. This, however, means more than over-sexualized college students trying to cross moral barriers, there are much bigger worldview implications, especially with regard to how we view sex and gender, here is an excerpt: “Supporters hail the trend as a key advance for homosexual and transgender students that eliminates a gender divide they see as outdated, particularly for a generation that has grown up with many friends of the opposite sex. Traditional rooming policies, they say, infringe upon students’ rights and perpetuate gender segregation.” Gender-free housing is the fruit of several decades of our schools of higher education teaching that gender is a social construct. Pray for these campuses and the Christians on them, that they would be salt and light in the midst of such moral confusion.
- Marriage and the Glory of God -Dr. Albert Mohler has written an excellent article on his blog about the purpose of marriage. I know many people who read this blog have probably already read Dr. Mohler’s article but I think we also have many readers who are unfamiliar with Dr. Mohler, so I wanted to take this opportunity to introduce you to him and especially on this important article on marriage.
- Ours is an era of self-expression. Individuals express themselves through marriage, and then express themselves through divorce–as if all of life is nothing more than a succession of acts of self-expression. A divorce culture explains away obligation and sacred promises as temporary statements of emotional disposition. I may feel married today–I may not feel married tomorrow.
- Marriage is the source of great and unspeakable happiness. Yet because of sin it is not unmixed happiness. But marriage is not first and foremost about making us happy. It is for making us holy. And through the covenant of marriage two Christians pledge to live together so as to make each other holy before God, as a testimony to Christ.
- The Myth of the Victimless Crime – I know I am way behind the times in addressing the Gov. Eliot Spitzer story, but I wanted to link to this article because it seems that every time a prominent figure gets caught with a prostitute, there are tons of op-eds calling for the legalization of prostitution hailing it as a victimless crime. This op-ed article by Melissa Farley and Victor Malarek debunks this idea that prostitution is a victimless crime primarily from the perspective that it devalues women and causes untold emotional and physical damage to women. I agree wholeheartedly with this but I would take it a step forward and say that not only are women victims but men, families and society as a whole are greatly harmed by prostitution as well. Prostitution, simply put, is a direct violation of the one-flesh union that God set up when he created Eve to be Adam’s companion and a society that embraces prostitution as legal should prepare to embrace widespread denigration of society as prostitution cuts at the most fundamental human institution and calls it into question, making one-flesh union something that can be bought, sold, and traded rather than something God created never to be separated.
- Asahel Nettleton, The Forgotten Evangelist – Matt Crawford at Standing on Shoulders has written an excellent article on a man you have probably never heard of, whose conversion sounds starkly different than most of the conversions you hear about today! This article was a joy to read–Nettleton is a crystal clear example of true conversion.
- Great Audio of the Week – Simon Gathercole on The Preexistence of Christ – These lectures were preached way back in 2004 in the Gheens lectures at SBTS, but have only recently been posted online. Dr. Gathercole does an excellent job of showing how the Gospels present Jesus as eternal with the Father. He does so by looking at the “I have come” sayings of Jesus in the synoptic gospels (Matt., Mark, and Luke). These lectures would make a great Sunday school series on why Jesus came (giving due credit to Dr. Gathercole of course).
Here is an excerpt that expresses why I have taken it upon myself to address divorce and remarriage:
Later in the article, Mohler writes:
Also I recommend checking out Mohler’s Radio Show from Monday where he interviews Stephen Baskerville on his new book Taken Into Custody, which tells the untold tale of the many victims of no-fault divorce.