A fundamentalist Baptist preacher is drawing attention on social media for a viral clip in which he says husbands should be the sole determiner of how many children their wives have.
Jonathan Shelley, the pastor of Stedfast Baptist Church in Watauga, Texas, made the comments on January 8 in a sermon titled “Postpartum and Pediatricians,” according to ChurchLeaders.com, which first reported on the comments. A video clip of the sermon has been viewed more than 250,000 times on Twitter.
Since 1938, the Harvard Study of Adult Development has followed two groups of men. One is a group of 456 boys from Boston’s most troubled families and roughest neighborhoods. The other consisted of 268 Harvard College students, chosen by a professor of hygiene specifically for their potential to become healthy, well-adjusted adults. The focus of the longitudinal study has been to discern the factors that best predict a long, healthy life.
The researchers who have followed these young men have maintained a stunning 84 percent participation rate over eight decades. They have visited homes, spoken to parents and siblings, tracked medical exams, and followed marriages and careers. The study, which is currently tracking a second generation of participants, has produced a wealth of significant data. However, in a recent article published in The Wall Street Journal, director Dr. Robert Waldinger and associate director Dr. Marc Schulz pointed to the most significant contributing factor for physical health, mental health, and longevity.
On Tuesday, the misleadingly named “Respect for Marriage Act” was passed by the Senate. Twelve Republicans and every Democrat voted yes for the bill, whose name makes it sound as if it affirms and supports marriage. In reality, however, it further enshrines a redefined understanding of marriage into law. According to this bill, marriage is nothing more than the legal affirmation of adult desires, rather than a bedrock for thriving civilizations, built on the realities of who men and women are and oriented around the needs and best interests of children. This new bill replaces the 1996 Defense of Marriage Act.
According to reports, Senate Majority Leader Chuck Schumer (NY) is readying the misleadingly named “Respect for Marriage Act” for a vote. While the name of the bill makes it sound as if it affirms and supports marriage, it would instead redefine it in the law, this time from the federal legislature. This bill would uproot marriage, at least legally, and ground it in nothing more than abstract desires, effectively redefining it from the institution that has long offered a bedrock for civilization to thrive.
n view of the creation, Jesus answered the question about divorce, that it was only permissible (not required) in cases of sexual immorality. He also continued that some are called to be single and celibate, and that marital integrity will be hard. But it has a design. Thus, it is, for humans, a calling, not a right.
Whether married or single, the call of Christ for His people is to reject a life focused on individual self-fulfillment and instead embrace a life focused on Christ and His Kingdom. This means living out God’s design for His image bearers to be culture makers, advancing the common good, and flourishing wherever possible. This also means advancing the good news that redemption is available through the person and work of Jesus Christ.