August 30, 2007


In the previous post, I had left the impression that some on the Boundless site were making the same misapplication of Hosea as Debbie Maken. Ted Slater has taken me to task on my statement. It seems my memory was not correct and so I issue a retraction here. I probably had these posts in mind, and they make different applications of Hosea (although I still think they are out of context - Hosea's actions are actually an object lesson for the Israelites--like Ezekiel lying on his side, Ezekiel not mourning the death of his wife, etc.):




Anonymous singlechristianman said...

It's an honorable thing to do to leave a retraction. We've yet to hear such a thing from boundless for some of their misrepresentations. This might be due to their not "hearing" themselves, or "hearing" you; or it may be institutional obstinance. But, we live our lives for an Audience of One. I commend you for your integrity.

8/30/07, 7:17 PM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...


Very good. It's important to not step on toes when we are trying to illustrate where the Marriage Mandate has gone terribly wrong. I think most authors at Boundless are very thoughtful and always try to stay with the proper interpretations of scripture.

Of course, there is still much foolishness going on with the Marriage Mandate crowd.

Captain Sensible just recently suggested:

"How about introducing a "Single Male Surcharge", so that all the single men in our churches could actually make a contribution towards providing a home for the single women?"

This idea was also floated recently by the Feminist Party in Sweden. It was so wildly unpopular that it wrecked the party as a viable political entity.

I think we can see the true colors of the Marriage Mandate movement. It has a fundamental disrespect for ordinary men; it blames men for all social problems including divorce, and wants all men to pay for the choices single women have made.

8/31/07, 6:00 AM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

It saddens me that the important discussion that we need to be having regarding the excellent piece of work that is, "Getting Serious About Getting Married: Rethinking the gift of singleness", is getting sidetracked by just a handful of people with their own personal agendas.
I wonder how many people that own or prolifically comment on blogs will hear the words "Well done, my good and faithful servant" for their work?

I feel most of you men will go directly to Hell. On your day of judgment, Debbie Maken will decide your fate and it will be the fires of Hell for eternity. No man who disagrees with Debbie Maken may enter the Kingdom of Heaven.

8/31/07, 7:08 AM  
Anonymous Captain Insanity said...

It saddens me that the important discussion that we need to be having regarding the excellent piece of work that is, "Getting Serious About Getting Married: Rethinking the gift of singleness", is getting sidetracked by just a handful of people with their own personal agendas.
I wonder how many people that own or prolifically comment on blogs will hear the words "Well done, my good and faithful servant" for their work?

Not many. Most will go to Hell after they are judged jointly by God and Debbie Maken.

May we all be single and barren forever; always worshipping Debbie Maken and turning from God and common sense!

8/31/07, 7:10 AM  
Blogger Ted Slater said...

Thank you for your gracious humility, Anakin.

singlechristianman -- why spoil this act of kindness with a jab at Boundless? Is that really necessary?

8/31/07, 8:06 AM  
Blogger Ted Slater said...

Hm. I'm puzzled by your closing thoughts, implying that, well, Boundless is still getting our theology mixed up, taking things out of context.

I clicked on the first link, which included the following:

"The prophet Hosea is asked to marry a prostitute who continues to run off and sleep with other men. It's a picture of God's relationship with Israel -- how He continues to love and pursue her even when she turns away."

I don't see anything unbiblical about that interpretation. How is that wrong?

The second link references an article on Here's a quote from that article:

"Obviously, it's heart-breaking to watch the prophet give himself to a woman who repeatedly betrays him in the beds of other men. But as hard as that is to stomach, it turns out to be a beautiful metaphor for God's insatiable love for His unfaithful people."

Surely you don't disagree with that orthodox interpretation?

Again, it really feels like you're just bent on finding something about Boundless to complain about. Even when we are biblically sound, providing standard/orthodox interpretations of Scripture, you have to find fault with us somehow.

Please, Anakin -- a little grace toward your fellow Christians. A little grace here. Please rethink your animosity toward us and the good work we're trying to do.

8/31/07, 8:15 AM  
Blogger Anakin Niceguy said...

This comment has been removed by the author.

8/31/07, 12:07 PM  
Anonymous singlechristianman said...

Ted, thanks as always for particpating. I am going to presume to offer you some man to man advice (since we are speaking man to man, and not man to child or vs. versa). Do a heuristic regression analysis of the times when progress has been made in your talks with me -- has it ever come of shame? Do I appear to have any shame receptors in my brain? For conviction, I hope. But not shame. I gave up that estrogelical game years ago. You were not "jabbed". Consider yourself "admonished" if you want some part of that comment to apply to you -- if you need proof that you have misrepresented anyone, I'll let them take it up individuallly with you. But you have not been sinned against, here, with my words to Anakin, which were not addressed to you. It's not about you. Or about me, for that matter.

You are in the company, for the most part, of people who want honest weights and measures in this discussion. As a single christian man who hopes to remarry, I have an interest in what ideas float around in the christian community. I have a son in the age group that your ministry speaks to. To that end I'm real comfortable pressing for honest accountings of what those beliefs are and what they mean.

As I have pointed out in response to you today on my 'blog, you've even misquoted me to me at at my own blog. But I don't care about that, really; but I do care about the quality of the discussion and moving it forwards. You do not, and cannot, move the conversation forward when you speak in some kind of "pastoral" voice to me, and I would dare say some of the others listening. I've already told you what you need to do to be a pastoral authority in my life -- defend me from shame when I have done no sin. Do this in an active way at boundless by denouncing shame tactics against single christian me, even if those doing it have not used boundless, in your view, as a forum to do it. What, exactly, does a shepherd do when the sheep are threatened or something attempts to scatter them?

Now, you don't have to talk to me or with me. But you will have to deal either with me (not likely) or someone like me (likely). It would be better for you, I think, if you had a hand in the game. And you will simply get dealt out the "game" if you can't come down a notch and relate to us as equals. I acknowledge, here, your acknowledement of me as a christian with valid concerns. I thank you again for this. You have some valid pastoral concerns, as well, for those young people you advise. I would rather take injury on myself than cause anyone to stumble by giving them bad advice.

The only other reason you might legitimately and scripturally expect some deference from me and some others here would be if you were an older man, whom there would be a scripturally duty to admonish gently. If you do happen to be so, then please communicate my failure to me gently. Otherwise, earn your respect in this community of thinkers, the way everyone else has to. It's not a slam against you. It's just the way men of good will should do things when an issue is contentious.

8/31/07, 12:10 PM  
Blogger Anakin Niceguy said...

Anakin Niceguy said...


It is not the interpretation, per se, that bothers me. It's the application to modern relationships some are making that I find to be unwarranted. Are men called to behave like Hosea, per se, or are there other more apropros scriptures that need our attention? Would we tell widowers not to mourn for their wives too much, as per Ezekiel? It doesn't seem like a proper exposition of the text. I think the context for both passages is God's attitude towards Israel, not a discourse on how men should treat women today.

At any rate, I don't have a personal grudge against anyone who writes for Boundless, Ted. I'm sorry if it seems that I am "out to get" Boundless because I have some bur in my saddle or something like that. My concerns on this blog have been fairly consistent - how the church treats men and single people (in other words, those concerns that happen to intersect for churchgoing bachelors). I have addressed the writings of Debbie Maken, Alex Chediak, and others I believe. If this seems like a one-trick pony blog - a hobby horse with a narrow interest - a tilting at the windmills, then I plead guilty. It is that way by design because when I started this blog, no one that I know of was addressing the concerns to the extent I was. I am glad to say that I have since then become aware of others who share my convictions and concerns. I intend for this place to be primarily a resource for those of a kindred conviction and secondarily a place for frank and lively dialogue with those that may disagree with me. With that in mind, I invite you to continue to share your thoughts on what I write. In short, this place is a bit like the McLaughlin group. Pull up a chair and give us your take.

8/31/07, 12:13 PM  
Anonymous singlechristianman said...

OOps! I meant "single christian men", not "single christian me". Freudian slip? And of course I mean "done no sin" to apply to my going out on dates gasp without someone's OK-say-so or gasp being single a whole two and half years.

8/31/07, 12:19 PM  
Blogger Ted Slater said...

singlechristianman -- I'm often confused by your posts and comments. I try to understand your points, and re-read and re-read them, and am sometimes just unsure what you're saying.

You keep mentioning "shame" as something that doesn't motivate you. OK. That's fine. I don't understand how I'm "shaming" anyone, though. Is it something I've posted on your blog or someone else's blog? It just strikes me that resistance to something you label "shame" is a big part of your identity.

You also mention that I have a "pastoral" voice. I don't understand that. I am editor of Boundless, and have been immersed in the study of issues relevant to singles for a couple of years now. I wouldn't consider myself an "expert," but I have earned the right to be a type of "mentor" among some singles. But "pastoral"? I don't understand what that means.

A puzzling aside: You actually requested that I express more "pastoral concern" for you in your "retraction." Ultimately, I'm not a pastor, and wouldn't know how to act pastorally in this context.

My being confused by your comments may have led me to, in your words, misquote you. When I asked why you were threatening Boundless in a previous comment, you responded with:

"If having people lay eyeballs on your site sounds like a 'threat' then indeed I urge you to examine why this sounds that way to you."

I interpreted that is a denial that you were threatening us, that I was wrong to think you were.

I hesitate to draw attention to some of the specific words you use, but I think they contribute to the confusion. Words like heuristic regression analysis, estrogelical, and so on. During the years I was earning my two master's degrees, I found no instance to use these highfalutin terms in normal conversations. They seem only to be used as a kind of verbal flyswatter. It feels like you're looking down your nose at me, rather than trying to communicate as a peer.

It almost feels like you enjoy the back-and-forth banter so much that you'd rather dwell there than actually resolve anything. I can appreciate the wonder of verbal dance, of well-crafted sentences. But if the purpose of the communication is largely to draw attention to its beauty, and not to move a discussion forward, it gets tiring.

I'd like to understand you, singlechristianman, and resolve our conflicts. But if our differing communication styles inhibit any resolution, then my time spent here is better spent elsewhere.

8/31/07, 2:19 PM  
Anonymous singlechristianman said...

Ted: I commit myself to praying daily for you during the month of September. I will pray daily for:

a) the health and protection of your family, and
b) for God's wisdom to come to you for solving the problems of your life.

hear me: I do not mean "b" in a smarmy way, supposing that you have all these problems that are so bad you need God to bail you out -- I mean it genuinely and sincerely -- I will pray for God's wisdom in your life.

In more ideal settings this could be done privately -- but it occurs to me that this is a way to be "gracious" -- as you have asked for, and that all believers can and should rightfully expect from other believers -- I mean you no harm, and wish you no harm, and wish God's best for you.

PS: I actually use "heuristic" in my work; and "estrogelical" is a term of mockery to describe a feminised kind of christianity that is unbalanced.

8/31/07, 7:31 PM  
Blogger Songbird said...

I read Micah's actual article on being pro-choice about love and Lindy Keffer's article on the danger of taking "guarding your heart of being hurt" too far in TrueU. They have very good insights. What's your objection to their conclusions? I agree with Micah that love is way more than a feeling and with Lindy that human relationships and genuine love are never meant to be risk-free. What do they has to do with this issue of misapplication of scripture anyway?

9/2/07, 11:42 AM  
Anonymous someone said...


I think there has been a misunderstanding. The reference to Micah is not to the author of an article, but to the Old Testament book of the Bible. The objection being made here is to how Debbie Maken misuses passages from the book of Micah in an attempt to claim that men are responsible for the sins of women.

9/4/07, 4:21 AM  
Blogger Songbird said...


There is a book called Micah. You are right on that. Anakin is actually talking about Debbie Maken's misuse of the book Hosea, not the book Micah. What I was talking earlier is why would Anakin think Micah Wierenga's actual article on love being pro-choice and Lindy Keffer's article on the danger of taking "guarding your heart of being hurt" too far in (which both articles have promoted by Suzanne Hadley and Denise Morris through writing a blog post about it) misuse the book Hosea

9/4/07, 11:47 AM  
Anonymous someone said...


My bad. You are right that it was the book of Hosea not Micah that was being discussed. I got them mixed up in my head. Sorry.

9/5/07, 4:18 AM  

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