Michael Pearl’s thoughts on a wife’s duty to a child molesting husband

You know how some things are just so bizarre you tend to want to forget them? Well, I had forgotten this quote by Michael Pearl until I read it in Rebecca’s blog archives this morning.  Now seems like a good time to post it.

According to Michael Pearl:

“But if your husband has sexually molested the children, you should approach him with it. If he is truly repentant (not just exposed) and is willing to seek counseling, you may feel comfortable giving him an opportunity to prove himself, as long as you know the children are safe. If there is any thought that they are not safe, or if he is not repentant and willing to seek help, then go to the law and have him arrested. Stick by him, but testify against him in court. Have him do about 10 to 20 years, and by the time he gets out, you will have raised the kids, and you can be waiting for him with open arms of forgiveness and restitution. Will this glorify God? Forever. You ask, “What if he doesn’t repent even then?” Then you will be rewarded in heaven equal to the martyrs, and God will have something to rub in the Devil’s face. God hates divorce — always, forever, regardless, without exception.”

And if this isn’t weird enough, check out the direction our culture is going on the topic of pedophilia! I know some people may dismiss this but let me tell you I well remember being a college freshman 40 year ago and sitting in an Abnormal Psychology class where homosexuality was still considered to be abhorrent behavior by the American Psychiatric Association.  A year later they pronounced it to be normal; now look at what unregenerate man proclaims as such.  Oh how our world desperately needs the Gospel of Jesus Christ!

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Comments

  1. Laura says

    Karen, this is horrible.I knew that the Pearls basic philosophy was that no matter what happens in a marriage, a) it is the wife’s fault for somehow not fulfilling her “role”, and that b) regardless of violence or criminality, you are married for life. This is a new low, though. As I keep saying, if reasonable Christian people continue to allow themselves to be affiliated with these false teachers, they will be dragged into the dirt with them.

  2. says

    I agree that marriage is for life and that the only reason you can divorce and remarry is adultery which child molestation would fall under in my book. I believe you are allowed to divorce for other reasons but then remarriage is not an option. I would however never welcome a pedophile back into my life even if I somehow couldn’t get out of the marriage.

    I don’t share your worries that pedophilia will be as accepted as homosexuality though.

    As a side note, I have gotten into listening to your podcasts, finally, and I am very impressed. You do a great job!

  3. says

    Riiiiight. Because every woman wants to stay married to a man who molested her children. Have sex with the man who had sex with your babies? Sorry to be graphic, but that’s exactly what they’re saying here. How utterly stupid can they be?

  4. shilohmm says

    I like how he oh-so-carefully emphasizes that the wife must figure out if the abuser “is truly repentant (not just exposed)” and it’s her responsibility to “know the children are safe.” Should someone follow this advice only to have their child abused, Michael Pearl can claim she “wasn’t following” his instructions.

    The fact is, no one can hand their children over to a former abuser and “know” their children won’t be harmed — this would require omniscience. It’s a matter of playing the odds, which is why people are generally advised to keep kids away from known abusers; the odds aren’t so great in those cases. But Pearl clearly believes he can read other people’s hearts, is convinced what he’s reading is the truth, and apparently assumes everyone else can acquire this ability with a bit of effort.

    My firewall won’t let me into the pedophilia link and I don’t feel like circumventing it, but a friend of mine in the late 1970s was told by a social worker she and her sexually abusive father just needed to “reconcile their disparate views of sexuality.” (I believe that is a direct quote.) And at least two psychiatrists I knew in the early 1980s saw nothing wrong with the “cultural tradition” of a father initiating his daughters into sexuality during their teens. One of the psychiatrists was the sister of a friend of mine who assured me she hadn’t been raised to believe that.

    So if the APA decides that pedophilia is harmless and just another approach to relationships, it won’t surprise me.

  5. says

    I think what M.Pearl is basing his directions to women concerning staying married is from I Corinthians 7:11.

    I will not say anything one way or another about what M. Pearl is saying. With what I share, please keep two things in mind about me: I am an author who exposed my issues with “Created to be His Helpmeet” last year. My book is “Uncovered No More, clothed by God”. I equally exposed Rebekah (Pearl) Anast and her husband Gabe because I was on their board, 7xSunday, and polygamy was discussed in a way that was not balanced on that site in late 2008 and into 2009. But I will not condemn the Pearl family as I see many within Christianity doing. It is the same with people like Stacy McDonald. I will not condemn them because I feel it is as if we are confining them to hell with some of the writing I have seen taking place. I pray for these ministers, and I hope for a better day within Christianity.

    If I were in the shoes of a woman who is dealing with a husband who sexually molested one of our children, I would separate immediately and take the children with me. If I can get documentation and charges set against my husband, I would do it. Then, I would rely upon the Holy Spirit to guide me after that.

    My personal and most likely course of action: Divorce but remain unmarried. If you as a mother do anything else, you will send a mixed message to the children about motherhood, being a wife, and being a child. There would be lifelong consequences to me and my ex-husband, but I married him and biblically according to I Corinthians 7:11 I should not remarry unless the man dies. I would wait until he died before I considered marriage again.

    However, to welcome him back at any time, repentant or not, is not a message I would want to send to my children. I do not think a Christian woman should marry again after she has had to divorce her (Christian or non-believing) spouse. When we are committed to one man, the Bible says to stay in the marriage until death parts you whether he stays in the marriage or not. I would divorce the man who sexually molests, but I do not think it wise to “welcome him back after jail time with open arms”. Sorry. Some things require more than that.

    We are living in a time and in a society which diminishes sin within the Body of Christ. M. Pearl is trying to validate repentance here in this example, but it is too mixed as is the other example I have of a recent happening:

    A pastor from Florida who was in charge of a mega church (8,000 members), was found dead in a New York hotel room. It is likely suicide by drug overdose. This man’s wife had to divorce him in 2009 (they have four children) due to his having a physical relationship with a prostitute. The Baptist pastor who preached part of the funeral said that this man was a good Christian who had helped the youth.

    God help us. This man should have been removed from the pastorate in 2009 when his wife had to file for divorce.

    The connection in my mind about these two cases of M. Pearl’s advice and this pastor? The women are not taken seriously enough. There is a lack of the fear of God where women are concerned, and it doesn’t matter where you are within Christianity to understand how it is so. I am writing about that in my up and coming second volume: “Uncovered No More, loved by Jesus”. I invite you all to “like” my page on FB or join me on Twitter. It’s time to pray. Where two or more are gathered (Matthew 18:18-20) God answers. Women are mighty powerful prayer partners, mighty powerful.

  6. Adam says

    Yipe!

    It likewise wouldn’t surprise me if pedophilia were legalized. The problem is that we have opened the door up to this, not only by the way we have accepted homosexuality, but also by the way we have accepted some of the crazy immodest clothes that we have for girls very young. I never could figure out how a society could say pedophilia is wrong, and then dress children as if pedophilia were perfectly okay. It is sad.

    God Bless,
    Adam

  7. says

    I agree, Darcy.

    I don’t think God is going to condemn anyone for divorcing a child molester. I understand the grace of God is for everyone, but there’s a repentance that needs to take place and forgiveness does not mean you have to continue on with some people. Humans deal with one another in ways that are human..we miss the mark..but God is the only one who can accurately be Grace for mankind.

  8. Final Anonymous says

    Cara: “I would wait until he died before I considered marriage again.”

    I would be tempted to help him along with that.

  9. says

    Cara, I think it is very important to examine the words and the teachings of those who are mentoring homeschoolers. I am willing to name names because I think actual quotes are the most important way of dealing with false teachers. Somehow people get the idea that the Pearls or McDonalds or Kevin Swanson, or whomever should not be held accountable for their teachings…why?

  10. says

    This is an awful thing to think about, but it is one which is important to discuss. Thanks Karen.

    I remember after being interested in corporal punishment of children, one of the other subjects which there is so much need to address concerns divorce and remarriage. So much misunderstanding of what Paul meant is present today.

    I even still have one book edited by H Wayne House titled “Divorce and Remarriage: Four Christian Views.” These four views are:

    1. No Divorce/No Remarriage (Seems like Michael Pearl takes this position)
    2. Divorce, but no Remarriage
    3. Divorce and Remarriage for Adultery or Desertion
    4. Divorce and Remarriage under a variety of circumstances

    Each of these positions are defended by Christian scholars and academics while each of the other critiques the other’s position. It is an interesting book. There is no unanimity in the body of Christ of what this all means at all.

    Couple of basic ideas about marriage. Marriages are between men and women. A “man” or a “woman” who would engage in a sexual relationship with a child under any circumstance is according to Scripture not to be defined as a “man,” but is rather to be removed from the community of Christianity.

    St. Paul commanded the “man” in I Corinthians 5, someone who was engaging in an apparent consensual sexual relationship with his step mother (a grown adult woman) to be removed from the Church and to be “delivered over to Satan” (I Cor. 5:3). Question? Can we all agree that someone who engages in a sexual relationship with a child is committing a sin far more heinous than what this man in I Cor. 5 did? So considering this information, I think Paul’s condemnation of such a person would be much more violent.

    In addition, “But if anyone does not provide for his relatives, and especially for members of his household, he has denied the faith and is worse than an unbeliever.” ( I Timothy 5:8)

    Now once again we are talking about scale. If a “man” would not provide for his own family, according to Paul, he is not a Christian “man.” He is human, but “has denied the faith.”

    Denying the faith is pretty serious, but I think we can say that engaging in a sexual relationship with a child is much much worse than one who would simply not provide for his family. This is a much greater sin.

    A dead beat dad would rightly have his wages garnished and might be subject to jail time after repeated warnings, offenses or violations, but a person caught having a sexual relationship with a child would rightly be subject to jail time immediately. So, Paul’s condemnation of the later person would be much stronger.

    Here I have to agree with Larry Richards who defended position number four concerning Divorce and Remarriage.

    In my view, any woman who for one moment would think under any circumstance of being restored in any way to a human being (note that I did not use the term “man” purposely) who has far exceeded the sin of someone who Paul defined as denying the faith for doing something far less heinous, God forgive that person. A person who would commit a sexual act with a child is according to Scripture as “defiled” and are condemned and under God’s judgment. “Let marriage be held in honor among all, and let the marriage bed be undefiled, for God will judge the sexually immoral and adulterous.” (Hebrews 13:4)

    A person who commits such a heinous sin as we are here discussing has “died” spiritually and as such there is absolutely no reason to wait for their physical death to remarry. This is I think the meaning of I Cor. 5. Paul said to deliver that “man” to Satan for the destruction of the flesh. Someone though who would engage in a sexual relationship with a child has descended far below the sin of the man in I Cor. 5.

    I personally would consider such a person “dead” and in God’s hands. Of course, were they a spouse, the violations once again would be greater because not only would they have committed a horrifying sin against a child and God, but they would have also violated the agreement they made with their spouse for fidelity, holiness and purity. In this case, the divorce issue may not even be relevant because a spouse could probably petition to have their marriage annulled, take back their maiden name (if the spouse was a woman) and consider that their former spouse no longer existed.

    To conclude, marriage is between a man and a woman and if any one of those parties engages in an act which is obviously in Scripture indicated by scale to be an act which would place that person committing the same in a category below that of “man”, then the terms under which the marriage were originally contracted are no longer in force.

    I think we can understand sins of this type in the following way. When a person is judged guilty of a crime and sentenced to prison, that individual in the USA, is no longer eligible to enjoy the same rights (like voting0 that other citizens have. They have been demoted and stripped of rights that they previously had.

    Likewise, those who commit heinous offenses and are married are also demoted into a lower category of humanity and the rules and benefits that apply to those in the higher category of humanity, (where the God fearing Christian generally resides) are now dealing with a situation where they are very much “unequally yoked.” (2 Corinthians 6:14) Light indeed has no fellowship with darkness!

    I strongly urge everyone to get Ken Bailey’s new book. http://www.ivpress.com/cgi-ivpress/book.pl/code=3934 – especially if you think that under no circumstance can you divorce someone who has denied the faith through their actions.

  11. shilohmm says

    David Instone-Brewer’s “Divorce and Remarriage in the Bible” is a terrific resource that traces the Biblical definition of marriage from the ancient Hebrews through the time of Christ (giving background that clarifies what Jesus meant with some of his statements) and on through the reformation, memory serves.

    While samuel martin is correct that the church at various times has debated whether Christians can divorce, Instone-Brewer shows that there have been some constants. If you consider the cultural background behind some of Jesus’ statements, He’s pretty clear about when God does — and does not — recognize a divorce. And even when people didn’t have access to those ancient documents, as in the Middle Ages, the core concepts survived surprisingly well, IMHO. Even without the background, the Bible isn’t *that* fuzzy on the subject — unless you pull verses out of context.

    I would say Romans 7:3 (which is in a discussion on a believer’s freedom of Christ but is regularly used to “prove” things about marriage), gets abused about as often as Hebrews 12, (which is addressed to believers facing persecution, but is regularly mined to prove God punishes wrongdoers). So long as you ignore context, you can make the Bible say all sorts of things!

    Seems to me the fact that God divorced Israel (Jer. 3:8) supports the understanding that divorce is allowed in cases of infidelity (and IMHO sexually abusing your child counts). God always follows His own laws, and He divorced Israel and married the Christian Church, so to say that divorce is a sin, period, is to deny God’s righteousness.

  12. says

    “So long as you ignore context, you can make the Bible say all sorts of things!”

    THE peril of the evangelical church I believe.

  13. says

    Samuel, I can’t wait for this book. Since I’ve “met” you, by the way, my reading list has grown and it is scarily cerebral! 🙂

  14. says

    While the quote from Michael and Debi Pearl about a child molesting husband and “you can be waiting for him with open arms of forgiveness and restitution” is creepy in its own right, within the larger context of the Pearls teachings it points to even greater dangers.

    The Pearls teach parents to “train” their children into complete, unquestioning, ultrasubmissive “obedience.” A key part of their training is through “whippings” (their word, not mine), with an attitude of “defeat totally. Accept no conditions for surrender. . . five to ten licks. . . continue the spanking. . . continue the disciplinary action until the child is surrendered.” (Again, their words.)

    I’m upset that children raised within this type of ultra-submission (not healthy parent/child care and obedience) are more vulnerable to sexual abuse, whether perpetuated in the home or community.

    To add a perverse twist to this, either the Pearls are aware of this vulnerability stemming from their teachings or in just a sick twist of irony, and so have written two CHILDREN’S books about sexual abuse — “Samuel Learns to Yell and Tell” and “Sara Sue Learns to Yell and Tell”. http://www.amazon.com/Samuel-Learns-Yell-Tell-Predators/dp/1616440163

  15. says

    Hi Karen,

    I respect your desire to keep to quotes and call out the names of those who you deem as “false teachers”. Truth be told, I may have to turn my writing that way some day, but the Lord has not called me to that at this time. I hope the day does not come when I turn that way because I will die inside a little bit if I do. The day I give up and start pointing out doctrinal difficulties with specific quotes more frequently is the day I will have given up on the Body of Christ as a whole actually being able to fall in repentance together. I did use a section of Voddie Bauchman’s book, “Family Driven Faith” to make a point about the over-teaching of submission to women here recently, so I completely understand where you are coming from. I am generally the one who gets misunderstood. /:

    I do not personally think the quote you used here by M. Pearl is necessarily “false teaching”, but I know you disagree because you feel M. Pearl is a false teacher unless I have mistaken what I have read of your writings. And I will point out that I value what you write very much. I thank you for the ministry you have within the Body of Christ.

    This quote, in my opinion, is M. Pearl’s opinion and nothing more. I happen to disagree with it, but then again, I did not give a full account of what I may would do in my earlier post because I did not want to be misunderstood. What I did say is that I would listen to the Holy Spirit. I could foresee my children staying in the love of Christ as we lived together after their sexually abusive father was in prison or separated from us through my divorcing him. I could see us revisiting my re-marriage to the man some years later after he shows complete repentance and lives that way. Where I think M.Pearl’s opinion is off base? You should ask the adult children who had been damaged if they can accept this. If they cannot, NO DEAL. If there is ever a repeat after I had caught my husband or if there is not obvious fruit in this man’s life, NO DEAL EVER.

    @samuel martin…..I can see your point; however, by 2 Corinthians the Apostle Paul was telling the church leaders to restore that man. I think M. Pearl is a little more lenient in that regard, honestly. In other words, I think he understands the forgiveness of Christ quite deeply and is willing to leave room for a man who has sexually molested a child to come back to Christ.

    On the other hand, I have heard M. Pearl’s teaching to people who were children that have been sexually abused. He told them that there is no way they should feel like they have to maintain any contact with such a person who did it to them or reconcile (though I believe he encouraged forgiveness, of course). Shockingly to me, it sounds like many times there are people who put pressure on children (either still young or an adult) to reconcile with people who damaged them and didn’t even acknowledge it. Somehow to some Christians, that IS the love of Christ. M. Pearl actually helped people who had been molested and were being pressured this way by very clearly telling them that is not the case at all. For crying out loud! M.Pearl also warned that these people, who go unrepentant, are better off with a mill stone tied to their neck. It is better for them to be cast into the sea. Jesus Christ Himself said that, and so M. Pearl was not teaching falsely that I could tell.

    Joyce Myers is a beautiful example in this regard. What her father did to her is awful, and she was raped by him repeatedly in her teen years. But her father is now saved, and it is directly because Joyce Myers ministered forgiveness to him. That is the miracle of which M. Pearl speaks.

    @ Karen….I heartily agree with you about how so many in this day and age are “growing up” our girls entirely too fast. We have seven daughters, and we are ever discussing this disparity in this home. We also try to pray for all the difficulty so we don’t turn fearful or judgmental. It is very hard to keep any balance these days.

    @Final Anonymous: ;0) Yes, oh yes, I get that. One of the reasons why I would require divorce is so that I didn’t make his death a reality. I couldn’t live with a man who had done that to my child. In another slightly different vein…I couldn’t live with a man who decided to become a polygamist either. I will not leave myself to be tempted to sin, and murder is sin.

    What some of you have written has taught me as far as the other issues in this regard. I think I will take what you have shared and try to remember to pray more about it all. Thank you Karen for an excellent discussion about this terrible issue. I will also mention….there is such a thing as slavery in this country. I weep. The children, they are suffering ever so much. Oh, how I weep. ~Cara

  16. says

    And you know what? I thought of one other thing about M.Pearl’s quote…..This is classic over-teaching of one part of the Bible without giving room for others. Again, in I Corinthians 7, a woman is given complete freedom to separate, only not to marry again therein.

    To me (this may be a stretch, but then again, after what I’ve been through in the Body of Christ particularly as it pertains to Debi Pearl’s book CTBHHM, maybe not) I see the ever present over-teaching of submission to a husband. I don’t think Mr. Pearl understands women at all to have written this recommendation. He cannot think you can “stand by this man” and also do what you are supposed to do for your children. Women don’t work that way at all. You cross our children, no matter who you are, and you better watch out. THAT is how a woman should be, in Christ.

    I do not like it when people are unbalanced like this. And, I think somewhere else I talked about ridding my home, yet again, of books of teachers. There were none of the Pearl materials here anyway, but there were other “doctrinal” books and etc. Off they went today. 😉 ~Cara

  17. stef says

    Dear Mr. and Mrs. Pearl,
    More stuff from Mike pearl

    Article: sobering Issues.

    I am a teen girl who has a problem. A man in my family took sexual liberties with me that were not his to take. I told my parents and they were sad and a little upset, but did NOTHING. This man is not in jail for hurting me and my parents have not confronted him. I have to pretend that he did not hurt me, by talking to him and even being alone with him. I am very scared and worried. I am not even safe in my own room. I am scared that he will hurt me again, or my little sister.

    When I try to tell my parents, they say I am “silly” and “childish.” It try to tell them that next time he might be more bold because he might think I have not told. I say, “He could rape me next time!” but they won’t listen.

    Please help! Should my parents confront him? Should we take legal action? I want him punished. He ruined my innocence and purity!

    Thank you, Scared

    Dear Scared,
    Your innocence has been stolen, but not your purity. God does not condemn you for what this evil man has done to you. God does condemn him. Jesus said, “But whoso shall offend one of these little ones which believe in me, it were better for him that a millstone were hanged about his neck, and that he were drowned in the depth of the sea” (Matthew 18:6). As I write this letter to you, I am so hurt and mad that all I can think about is how I would like to get my hands on the filthy pervert who hurt you. I would slap him until he cried and then I would kick him. “Do not I hate them, O LORD, that hate thee? and am not I grieved with those that rise up against thee? I hate them with perfect hatred: I count them mine enemies” (Psalm 139:21-22). Finally I would call the law and see to it that he got at least 20 years in the state penitentiary where he would get some of his own medicine back.

    Then I would apologize to you on behalf of all men and assure you that we are not all like that. And I would promise you that God will heal you, and someday you will marry a righteous man who will cherish and protect you.

    Yes, you are right. This rotten devil will strike again, if not you, then other children. He feeds on pornography. His soul is twisted. Hell awaits him in the end, but in the mean time, we must protect the children. Yes, he must be exposed to the public. He must be handcuffed and pushed into the back of a squad car. He must be finger printed and thrown into a jail with murderers and rapists. He must stand in a court room and hear the sentence passed against him. He must be given a prison uniform and hear the door close behind him and then turn and face fourteen hundred inmates, many of whom despise child molesters. He will have thousands of nights to remember his sin and understand the seriousness of it. Maybe one day he will walk into the chapel service where I am preaching and he will hear the gospel preached. Perhaps God will have mercy on him and he will repent. God will save him and he will be forgiven and delivered from sin.

    But for the present, you must go to your parents and tell them that either they call the law and report him or you are going to do it. Warn them that if you are forced to call the law, they may be incriminated for not doing so themselves. They would be construed to be accomplishes for knowing of the ongoing crime and not taking action to stop it.

    Now I want to try to help you understand your parents. It is obvious that the perpetrator is someone in your family, possibly an older brother, an uncle, or perhaps a grandfather. In situations like this, parents are sometimes so shocked that they do not face reality. They just hope that this is the last of it and that it will go away. They know the trauma of everyone finding out that this family member is the most despised of sinners, and of him going to trial and to jail. I am ashamed to tell you, but you need to know: Your parents are cowards. It looks like they care more for their reputations than they do for you, but they are just moral weaklings with no spiritual or moral backbone.

    If you give them the ultimatum and they still refuse to act, then tell everyone you meet that this person has accosted you in a sexual way. Tell everybody at church. Call everyone in the family. Denounce him in the home. Denounce him in public. He and your parents are making you bear his sin in silence. Let him bear his own sin in public.

    There is “a time to keep silence, and a time to speak; A time to love, and a time to hate” (Ecc. 3:7-8). It is the time to speak, and it is time to hate. When he has served his time and repented, then it will be time to keep silent and time to forgive.

    When he gets to the prison, send us his name and address and we will send him a new Bible and some Bible tapes.

    Dear Mike & Debi,
    I have been married 25 years to a professing Christian man that has had adulterous affairs and is deep in the sexual bondage addiction. If I do not let him tie me up and have sex once a week he leaves me. I am at wits end. I go to a Baptist Church and that is where I heard of you. I just cannot go to our Pastor about this. I need help. Please give me some godly advice.

    My husband left last year (has been back since June) spent all our money, we had to file bankruptcy because he picked up a 22-year-old prostitute that let him tie her up. He gave her everything. I am so confused. I beg God to help him or to take me home. I have even thought of suicide, but I have a great daughter and a beautiful grandson. This would break their hearts. I did bad things in my past. I have repented and I am wondering if God is punishing me with this. I feel so defiled. L

    Dear L,
    Perversion has no point of fulfillment. Once a man starts on the road to porn, and then into the perverse, there will be no point of satisfaction. Sexual perversion is a quest for the bazaar. When the bazaar becomes common it loses its appeal and must be traded in for the more twisted and vile (Titus 1:15). Tying you up is his practice of rape and violence. There can be no love in this behavior. It is an insatiable fantasy for the illicit and forbidden that excites him. Never participate in his evil imagination. It is time to let him leave and not come back. By leaving and by joining himself to another, he has become one flesh with the other person (1 Cor. 6:16). He is no longer one flesh with you, no longer married to you. He has “put you away.” In today’s terminology, you are a divorced woman. You are free from him, (1 Corinthians 7:15, Matthew 19:9).

    The Bible doesn’t tell a wife what to do in this case, because under Mosaic law, he would be put to death. The Bible assumes that no man would be allowed to live who committed theses sins.

    You share no blame for his sin. It is his alone. If you allow him to return after being with other women, you are at high risk for AIDS.

    After accepting the divorce he has pressed upon you, you may want to spend the rest of your days praying for his salvation and deliverance from sin. It would indeed bring glory to God if you should pray him into repentance.

  18. says

    The Pearls are sending mixed messages about how to handle molestation with a family? Color me shocked.

    To Train Up a Child is like that too.

    No wonder why people are so confused… I guess that’s why Michael Pearl feels he has the right to label the Schatz parents as “out of control” even though they followed his instructions to the letter because elsewhere, Pearl teaches parents to tie heart strings or use a thick blade of grass to hit their child with no mention of the plumbing line.

    So which is it Mr. Pearl? A thick blade of grass like you used in your CNN interview or a 1/4″ piece of PLASTIC? Have nothing more to do with the man who rapes your children or send him to jail, woo him with intimate letters and then let him back into your house after he’s served his time?

  19. says

    Friends,

    I rejoice in these very important discussions that help the cause of learning to be advanced for all of us. All viewpoints are important and essential. Thanks for allowing me to join this conversation.

    I Corinthians 7 is one of the hardest passages of Scripture in the whole Bible to understand and interpret for our times today.

    I would like to mention one prayer which I would like to share and really has great meaning for my journey these days with hope for greater knowledge of Him. The source is ancient and as far as I know anonymous.

    From the cowardice that shrinks from new truth,
    From the laziness that is context with half truths,
    For the arrogance that thinks it knows all truth,
    O God of truth, deliver us.

    By the way Karen, you will rejoice in Bailey’s book. You don’t have long to wait now. As for your reading list, I’ll have to add a few more for your consideration. I’ve been working on a kind of paper (which I plan to put on my blog when I redesign it – hoping to get this done soon) which I go into my theological tool box including my most essential research volumes which to me are indispensible. More on this later.

    Blessings from Jerusalem,

    Samuel Martin

  20. Judy says

    I think people who are perpetrators of abuse, in the case of this man it is spiritual, don’t know how to understand proper relationships. It should be no surprise that he doesn’t know how to handle issues of sexual abuse in a healthy manner.

    However, I have to take issue with a few things you said. First, I don’t think you can compare homosexuality to pedophilia. There is a massive difference between two adults freely choosing to engage in an activity, and one adult forcing a child to do something they don’t understand. By suggesting they are the same, you are in essence giving credence to the arguments of those who seek to normalize pedophilia. Yes, they are both sins, but they are no more related than homosexuality and gluttony are (yes, gluttony is a sin. When evangelicals seek to make that illegal, they will have my vote wholeheartedly!). 🙂

    Second, I work as a therapist with sex offenders and I have never even gotten an inkling that anyone with credibility is trying to normalize pedophilia. I know this is a popular idea floating around the church, but it’s just not true. Of course rumors float around here and there, but this particular rumor has been floating around for 20 years and has never gained any momentum because everyone in the field thinks it’s bogus.

    Yes, the world desperately needs Jesus! But, I think perpetuating these kind of fear based half-truths is unhelpful because it causes the church to withdraw from the world in fear instead of going into it as we are commanded to do.

  21. Adam says

    Judy,

    However, I have to take issue with a few things you said. First, I don’t think you can compare homosexuality to pedophilia. There is a massive difference between two adults freely choosing to engage in an activity, and one adult forcing a child to do something they don’t understand. By suggesting they are the same, you are in essence giving credence to the arguments of those who seek to normalize pedophilia. Yes, they are both sins, but they are no more related than homosexuality and gluttony are (yes, gluttony is a sin. When evangelicals seek to make that illegal, they will have my vote wholeheartedly!). 🙂

    I would say this is a bit simplistic, and would take a little different approach. I think that we greatly underestimate what children can and cannot understand. I recently heard of a former teacher of mine who became a teacher in an inner city public school, and this fourteen or fifteen year old girl ended up seducing him. She did this in order to sue him, and get money and a new house. I know it sounds extremely wicked, but there are people, especially in lower class societies who train their minor aged girls to seduce men precisely in order to get money out of it.

    The fundamental problem here is not sexual relations per se, or even sexual relations with children [although the latter is certainly a problem]. The problem goes much deeper. It is a problem of what happens when sexuality is divorced from marriage. When it is removed from marriage, then selfish ambition can be used, from something as selfish as having sexual relations with a child who doesn’t know any better, to training your children to have sexual relations with men in order to get money out of it. There is no logical way to stop it.

    When sexual relations are kept within marriage, they become a way in which a husband and a wife display their love for one another, because they are protected by a lifelong commitment. Divorce sexuality from that commitment, and it becomes entirely selfish. It reduces men and women down to mere biological chemical objects. Hence, I would even argue that two adults who have consensual sexual relations without commitment are engaging in selfish-self centered behavior. Once you allow for the treatment of another person in that way, why must we say that the other person must understand it in order to be treated in that way [given that it is morally acceptable], or that we cannot treat someone that way, and get money out of it? It other words, if you allow sexual relations outside of marriage, then the only logical conclusion is that homosexuality and pedophilia should be allowed.

    Second, I work as a therapist with sex offenders and I have never even gotten an inkling that anyone with credibility is trying to normalize pedophilia. I know this is a popular idea floating around the church, but it’s just not true. Of course rumors float around here and there, but this particular rumor has been floating around for 20 years and has never gained any momentum because everyone in the field thinks it’s bogus.

    Yes, the world desperately needs Jesus! But, I think perpetuating these kind of fear based half-truths is unhelpful because it causes the church to withdraw from the world in fear instead of going into it as we are commanded to do.

    Judy, I think you really underestimate the philosophical foundations of arbitrary law. As Dr. Michael Brown notes in his new book A Queer Thing Happened To America, homosexuality was actually accepted as a psychological illness by this same organization that Karen cites, but it was removed due to dangerous protests when this particular society held their meetings in San Francisco. The mindset of people who promote things like homosexuality and pedophilia can be well summed up in the words of Oliver Wendell Holmes:

    The ultimate question is what do the dominant forces of the community want, and do they want it hard enough to disregard whatever inhibitions stand in the way.-Oliver Wendell Holmes

    The point is very simply that it does not matter if “credible” people are not trying to normalize pedophilia. It matters whether people who want to normalize it are willing to disregard any inhibitions [even moral or professional ones!] if they stand in the way of what they want. They can just simply take a page out of those who made homosexuality sociologically acceptable, and, so long as they can point to some alleged sociological benefit, they can push their way through.

    For example, if you can paint yourself as the homosexual community has done as an “oppressed minority,” even though your behavior is evil, and if you can use code words like “discrimination” and “you are judging me,” then you can set up the idea that you are an oppressed minority in the same way that homosexuality is, and you can say that all of these things that the homosexuals are using to argue their position, and use it to make pedophilia acceptable. The point is not that homosexuality and pedophilia are the same sin, and that we should categorize them as exactly the same sin. The point is that the arguments that the homosexual community uses to justify their behavior can equally be used to justify pedophilia. In fact, Michael Brown, in the book I mentioned above, actually points out that those in the country who want to normalize pedophilia are, indeed, using these exact same arguments. Add this to the system of arbitrary law that we have in our society today, and the possibility of pedophilia being legalized is a reality.

    You are right in a sense. Pedophilia and Homosexuality are two different kinds of perversions of sexuality. However, both are related to the way God created us. He created man to go with woman, not man with man or woman with woman [Genesis 2:24]. In the same way, he created sexual relations to be between adults [Genesis 2:24]. However, more importantly, if you notice, in both of those passages I cited one and the same text, Genesis 2:24 which is in the context of marriage. Once you remove sexuality from that context, why not remove it from the context of man and woman, or from the context of two adults? Without scripture as the foundation, there is no ground to stand on to say that pedophilia is wrong, and I would argue that everything is in place for just such a revolution, even if the experts in the field of psychology don’t agree with it now.

    I would point anyone interested in this topic to these programs that Francis Schaeffer did. This is a portion of what used to be a DVD, but, the last time I checked it on Amazon, it was out of print. Thankfully, someone has uploaded sections of it to Youtube. This particular section is very helpful in understanding this issue:

    God Bless,
    Adam

  22. Judy says

    Adam, wow. This could turn into a very long discussion. 🙂 First, thank you for your thoughts. I don’t have a ton of time to respond but here are a few thoughts.

    I guess I don’t think of 14 or 15 year olds when I think of pedophilia. In Biblical times 14 and 15 year olds were getting married and having children. I agree that “kids” that age have the ability to choose sexual relationships. They may not have as much discernment or wisdom in their choices as a 30 year old, but neither does an 18 year old. The only thing that is different is the law, which as you stated is arbitrary. When I think of pedophilia, I am thinking of children 12 and younger (although I do believe that teens can also be victims. My mind just automatically goes to younger children.). I don’t think children that age have any ability to completely understand the sexual relationship they are being forced to enter into. Even in the case where a parent is training a child to seduce, the child still doesn’t understand what is happening. It’s not like the child woke up one morning and came up with the idea on their own. They are still a victim of an adult imposing their own desires on them, and it is still abuse.

    I am very bothered by your assumption that victims of pedophilia do have the ability to make choices with regards to having a sexual relationship with an adult. In essence, you just argued for the other side. One of the main arguments of those who seek to normalize pedophilia is that they can choose to be in the relationship! If you take the issue of consent out of the argument, then it’s not abuse anymore. I’m really hoping that isn’t what you meant……

    Second, all I heard in your argument is a bunch of rantings driven by fear. I don’t say this to disrespect you, but to point out a culture of fear in the Evangelical community that drives the world away from Jesus, not towards Him. If you listen to any number of secular comedians who joke about Christianity, this is the number one thing they will say: Christians are afraid of everything. It’s based on things like this. I mean, come on. People have much more sense than you give them credit for. Of course we are all capable of infinite sin, but the majority of people are not going to say it’s ok for an adult to molest a child! I don’t care how determined the pedophile advocates are, they are still subject to majority rule.

    I go back to the issue of consent. The reason pedophilia will never be considered normal is because it is ABUSE. The child cannot choose to be in the relationship and the effects of being in a sexual relationship with an adult causes significant psychological harm. As long as there are people coming to therapy for being sexually abused, pedophilia will not be normalized. It goes against everything the psychological community is built on, not to mention the fact that every therapist would be out of business if there is no such thing as sexual abuse anymore. The APA is not going to discredit their bread and butter. Please use some common sense, here.

    I won’t argue that pedophilia and homosexuality are both perversions of God’s original intent for sexual relationships, but that does not mean that one logically follows the other. All of our sins are a perversion of God’s original intent for our lives. It doesn’t mean that because I lie today I will kill tomorrow.

  23. Laura says

    Judy: This is a worthwhile discussion. I agree with Adam in the sense that yes, all sexual activity outside of marriage requires the abandonment of an absolute standard in this area. Once an absolute standard is done away with, who has the authority to say any behavior is right or wrong?

    However, I agree with you that though in this way, all sexual sins are similar, that in effect they are very different. Jesus spoke of causing a little child to stumble…and the dire consequences that would follow. The victimization of children is, I believe, in a category of its own, particularly grievious to Christ.

    I would like to say that I think that there are many kind and moral people who are homosexual. Now, kindness and morality are NOT synonomous with salvation- but I say this to make the point that just because one accepts the homosexual lifestyle, that they would not necessarily approve of pedophilia. The Christian community is wrong in trying to paint all homosexuals as out of control monsters. I am not justifying the lifestyle. I just think that there are certain sins that Christians and the politicians who pander to them like to focus on for attention and votes. It would be less sensational to get on the bandwagon about lying…or gluttony (I am guilty here…) or pride.

    You know, I would tend to agree with you that it is far fetched and ridiculous to think that sexual victimization of children would EVER be accepted in our culture. But then, I have just finished reading a book that details the sex slave trade involving little girls in the third world…the rape of young girls in Africa…and suddenly, I think, could it happen here? Are we so different? The underlying Judeo-Christian sensibility that Francis Shaffer referred to as while not a SAVING force in society, at least a stabilizing force, is becoming pretty tattered. And what do you think about the cultural trend today that encourages little girls to wear very mature clothing, make up, etc ?

    As you said, this could be along discussion! Blessings, Laura

  24. stephanie says

    Wow. Were is the real christians at. The followers of Christ. People fail God an God doesn’t throw them to way. But we as christians who are the ones who are suppose to be forgiving an compassionate. Seem to be the harshest people. If God didn’t forgive us were would we be. We are putting God in a box as if he can only deliver certain groups of people. God doesn’t throw people out the church people do.God is love. He has loved us with an everlasting love. With love and kindness has he drawn us. Whosoever calls upon the name of the lord shall be saved. For God so loved the WORLD,that he gave his only begotten SON that whosoever BELIEVETH IN HIM SHALL NOT PERISH BUT HAVE EVERLASTING LIFE. God demonstrated his love toward us in that while we were yet sinners Christ died for us. As Christians we can not pick an choose who to love an who to forgive. If we don’t forgive men their TRESSPASSES our our heavenly FATHER wont FORGIVE us of our TRESSPASSES. Anyone can change with Gods help if they want to. With man its impossible, but with God all things are possible. God sent not his son into the world to condemned the world, but that the world through him might be saved. Gods word is settled IN in the heavenly. And he magnifies his word high above his name. If we confess our sins God is faithful an just to forgive us our sins and cleanse us of all unrighteousness.

  25. stephanie says

    I agree molestation is wrong. But as a christian u have to forgive and pray an seek guidance from the Holy spirit. But we can’t say that, people who do that can’t be saved or delivered. That’s putting limits on God. The just shall live by faith. Whether a woman stays with that person or not. His soul should become more important . U don’t have to be with that person to pray for God to touch heal an deliver an to save him or her to the utmost. Jesus Christ the same today yesterday an forever more. If he can raise the dead surely he can save, deliver a child molester. A drug addict, a murderer, who’re, drug dealer. Rapist. Homosexual, the abused. A lier, adulterous, unbeliever, alcoholic. Heartbroken, . The eyes of the Lord run to an fro through out the whole earth looking for someone he can show his self strong on the behalf of. Trust In God he can’t fail..

  26. amanda says

    I just happened to stumble across this and I have to say you all seem to be delusional, have never had to experience your daughters being victimized and being treated as if your less than human in the Christian church because you convicted the molesting husband. These men don’t rehabilitate, they just get sneakier about what they do, they have their pastor tell you that you must be submissive to all he does cause you are a woman and by that alone are sin incarnate. Go ahead and forgive them even when they’re molesting your grandchildren, I’m sure they’ll understand that you have no power over it to protect them cause after all, your just a woman and must be submissive.

  27. says

    H, Amanda. I am not sure what you believe I am promoting here, but, I posted this to show the fallacy of embracing Michael Pearl’s perspective. Please follow links and reread this discussion! But I also do not believe anyone is beyond the redemption of Christ and would never encourage a wide to welcome any pedophile into her home.

  28. Holly says

    You people who believe this man should have an opportunity to remain free- with his woman by his side-have serious issues, and in my opinion are what’s wrong with this world. If this piece of Sodom and Gomorrah trash had to be caught and threatened by your knowledge of his dirty little secret to seek help than guess what?! He isn’t repentant! He’s grasping to any hope for HIS PERSONAL SAFETY AND FREEDOM. If he were around during the time of Sodom and Gomorrah guess where he would be?! That’s right! Not in counseling or jail on earth! And since we are on this subject, I would like to place a request to God’s eternal venue. “God, I find it hard to believe that pedophiles, murders and people alike (who have committed sin so grave it not only effected the victim but caused devastation and suffering throughout the entire family) can make it in to heaven for eternal happiness and peace. If this is the case, I am requesting your reconsideration for such people. You shouldn’t have to feel the need to watch over your little ones there in heaven to make sure the weird uncle or whatever pedophile hasn’t went back to his ways from earth. You shouldn’t want the people who suffered on earth to get to heaven and have to run into their perpetrator with that look of horror or awkward moment. The same way you can’t forgive those who didn’t believe in you, we can’t forgive those who jeopardized our belief for you. If you weren’t their strength enough to stop them from commiting these crimes, then how much could ever really have meant to them?”. Sorry is just a word folks.

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