A Titanic Reality

Kerry Lewis shared an interesting article relating the difference between the final events on the Titanic and the version portrayed in movies.

“Men of power and prestige sacrificed their lives for women and children of the lower class, many of whom were indentured servants, day laborers, and domestic workers. On this flotilla of self-absorption, self-sacrifice became a prevailing virtue during a crisis moment, and the powerful chose death that the powerless might receive life.”

The era of such brave sacrifice is gone, along with the Christian worldview that sustained it. Progressives accuse conservatives of nostalgia for a culture that is past, a time we cannot recreate. They are half right. It is gone forever, but the future (or “eternal utopian present”) imagined by progressives is unsustainable, if not downright destructive. We agree on the death of the old culture, but have very different ideas about the future.

A future “godly culture” will come, but it will be nothing like any of the old ones because that’s not how God works. His process is death and resurrection, self-sacrifice and Spirit-increase—first the natural, then the spiritual. Masculinity has been beaten to death, and many Christians (and even secularists) have woken up to the consequences. Many are attempting to revive it, but Rich Bledsoe believes, like progressives, that the old, domineering masculinity was bad:

Along with everything else, masculinity in its original natural form is dying. I don’t know about any of you, but when one is virtually anywhere in the “third world” it is amazing to me as an American, the extent and degree of masculine control over everything. As an American, and one who lives in a particularly liberal town, this kind of unthinking, effortless, control, which is as natural as a fish in water, is almost incomprehensible. I recently read an account of a missionary kid who was American by birth, but reared in Japan for most of his youth, being especially amazed upon returning to America at the degree of rudeness and “yelling” that went on here from women to their men in public. But he said what amazed him the most, was that the men “took it like whipped puppies”. Indeed.

I think the natural power of the male is over. He can rebel against it all he wants, but it is struggling in quick sand. The more struggle there is, the faster he sinks. The patriarchal head of household church movement is completely artificial and is NOT a return to something spiritual, but something natural, and it is nature that is dying.

The only way forward for masculinity is to die. Jesus was the first man to give up his natural masculine powers. The Kenotic poem of Philippians is the essential telling of this story. It has now caught up with the world. It is only in dying to what is natural that masculine authority and headship can be raised again and come back in a new “final” form that is shorn of nature.

Now, I know everyone will want details on what this means. All I know is that every man I have ever seen who tried to revive nature ends up being an ass. I have seen cases of the most macho masculine and by nature controlling men, with what are undoubtedly very high male hormone levels, just rendered helpless by the current culture. They thrive no better than an Apache warrior in modern Arizona. And in fact, the reality is exactly the same as for the warrior. He can only die, and be raised as a Christian, which looks very different and does not exist by humiliating and degrading women and children.

I think everything in the natural world exists by rivalry. In the natural world, the man is the man is the man by overpowering rivalry over against the female and the children. In God’s world, this is undone. In reality, it may well be that large elements of all of this death have only come to pass as late as the 20th century.

Rich Blesdoe, The Death of the Masculine

So, don’t panic. Our cultural ship is going down, but it has to. A resurrected manhood and womanhood will soon rise out of the current tragic confusion.

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3 Responses to “A Titanic Reality”

  • Dave Says:

    The first thing I thought of reading this article was the movie “Courageous” (courageousthemovie.com). Have you seen it? Although the producers obviously had the best intentions, it came across as cheesy and a little creepy at points. I wonder if its because they think in order to get men involved in church they have to meld Christianity with this natural machismo… Any thoughts?

  • Mike Bull Says:

    Yeah, it seemed cheesy at first, but it was a pictorial sermon. Also, I realized that we have been conditioned by Hollywood to see certain things as cheesy. I watched it with the kids (ages 20, 16 and 10) and they didn’t think it was cheesy, just sort of “condensed,” as with screen depictions of just about anything. And the main character wasn’t all that butch, physically anyway. I liked that. The guys were cops, for sure, but despite that, they were all very normal, will believable challenges. I hope they keep making films. They are getting better each time.