The Family - EC332

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Lesson[edit]

Professor: Rushdoony, Dr. R. J.
Title: The Family
Course: Course - Easy Chair Series
Subject: Subject:Conversations and Sermons
Lesson#: 30
Length: 0:55:49
TapeCode: ec332
Audio: Chalcedon Archive
Transcript: .docx Format
Easy Chair Series.jpg

This transcript is unedited. It was:
Archived by the Mt. Olive Tape Library
Digitized, transcribed, and published by Christ Rules
Posted by with permission.


This is R. J. Rushdoony, Easy Chair number 332, January 26, 1995.

This evening Andrew Sandlin, Douglas Murray, Mark Rushdoony, John Upton and I will be discussing now the family.

Now the family is strangely neglected in teaching circles. You can go all the way through grade and high school and the universities without ever being told how central and important the family is. I have often spoken about the various kinds of government beginning, first, with the self government of a Christian man; second, the family; third, the Church; fourth, the school; fifth, your vocation; sixth all the various agencies in society and social groups and so on that govern you and, seventh, civil government, one kind of government among many.

Well, in terms of the Bible, the basic building block of society and of the Church is the family. And yet we neglect the family and we have had in our day an all out war against the family, against the very word family. We have redefined it to include homosexual groups or couples and to include, for a time when the hippies were very prominent, sexual freedom colonies as though they were a family.

Now a society disintegrates if the family does. The Church is weak if the family is weak. The individuals in a society are very much weakened if their family background is weak.

I know that more than once I have encountered the fact—whether it is from workers on high powered lines or people connected with the whole world of traffic accidents, whether from the insurance or the police angle—that the biggest correlation to accidents is unhappiness at home. It leads to more accidents, more reckless driving, more problems on the job than anything else because we are so created by God that we need a stable family, both as children and as adults. Without it, we are in deep trouble. [00:03:46]

Now, I have said nothing that is not well known...[edit]

Now, I have said nothing that is not well known. There are sociologists and other scholars who have written very interesting books on the subject, calling attention to how deadly any breakdown of the family is concerned. It is curious. Our world does not want to pay attention to such works. One of the greatest of such scholars, Carl C. Zimmerman of Harvard who died a few years back, never got the recognition he deserved. His books are out of print. And yet what he had to write was all important. We cannot have a future if we do not have stable families. And yet everything in our culture is designed to destroy the stable family. First, we have the demasculinization of man; second, the rise of Feminism; third, the attempt to create revolution among children demanding their rights. One could go on and on to describe the things that are being done to shackle the family or to destroy it and this should be of grave concern to us.

Now by way of counter revolution, the Christian school movement and the homeschool movement have been very, very important in counteracting this anti family revolution.

Well, with that introduction...

[Voice] I would like to... to... commend Andrew and Mark, because I have seen their families close up and I would like them both to comment, first, on how they built their families, because I think that both have model families and I think that would be instructive. [00:06:16]

[Voice] Well, I would just have to say, first of all...[edit]

[Voice] Well, I would just have to say, first of all, apart from the grace of God I know that I could speak for Mark on this point. We both ourselves came from families where there was a strong father who believed in the authority of the Word of God and who did his best to lovingly discipline his children and teach his children. I think another factor is the importance a father must recognize as the mother must the importance of the family itself.

I was mentioning to you earlier, John, about the necessity also of the father standing, as it were, at the threshold of his house with a sword in his hand guarding the influences on his family. Too many men today have, as Rush mentioned, not only been demasculinized, but they also have failed to recognize their responsibility to rule in their family. For some reason that word is a patriarchal word. And even the word patriarchy has become a bad word today. The word rule is a perfectly good word as long as it is counterbalanced by the love that there should be. But fathers are required to rule in a godly fashion in their family. And, of course, to lead their family into the faith, to train their children in the faith, to love God and to serve him with all of their heart, soul, strength and might and mind, to obey, to have a loving relation with the wife. I think all of these factors are necessary. But we can’t allow this egalitarian, feminized culture about us to set the standards for the family. We are going to have to do things that are unpopular.

People, for example, look at the size of my family and the size of other families. We are at the supermarket sometimes and people just... their eyes become as big as saucers saying, “I can’t believe that in this society you would have so many children.” And it is almost immoral to have so many children. Well, they are anti covenantal. They hate God. They hate his law. And one thing we need to do, by the way—stir up a little anger here—is we need to start turning the tables on people like that. We need to show them that they are the ones that are misguided. We are not misguided. So if they try to make us feel somehow inferior because we don’t have 1.3 children or 2.1 children, oh? You only want to have one child? You want to cut off your covenant seed? You are saying that you hate the covenant? We need to press them on that. We need to quit being so embarrassed by our obedience to the law of God.

[Voice] Well, I... I think it is important to realize that it is by the ... by the grace of God, you know, that we have, you know, well behaved children. My kids aren’t done yet. They have still got some growing up to do. But we have to do what is right and that is why Andrew mentioned the covenantal relationship and that we have to recognize that marriage is a covenant. It is... it is... it is like a contract between a husband and wife and it is also a contract under God and that we place ourselves under God’s authority because we have work to do and God placed man in this world to work and I think I was fortunate to get a wife. Her first job was working in a Christian school and she has that understanding that... that... that the Christian home is one of work, where we work and we serve God and that the primary responsibility of the Christian home is bringing children up in the nurture and the admonition of the Lord. And there is no guarantee that we will be successful in that, because it... you know, salvation is not the work of the parent. It is by the grace of God and a lot of fine people have had children that have turned away from the faith, not necessarily through any part on their own. [00:10:25]

So it is something that requires work, but I am very...[edit]

So it is something that requires work, but I am very thankful that my children have always been in a Christian school and many of their school years I have been their teacher. Home schooling, I think, is a tremendous asset in bringing up children in this day and age. Public education doesn't’ just teach them a few incorrect ideas.

[Rushdoony] Right.

[Voice] It is... it is entirely destructive to the Christian home.

[Rushdoony] That is right.

[Voice] Just entirely destructive of the Christian home. And I think parents have to realize that first of all. If they can’t send them to a Christian school then they have got to consider home schooling even if they have to change their lifestyle significantly to do so, because their... their... their children are at stake and they are at definite risk in... in... in any public school.

[Voice] I want to pick up on that point. I cannot stress too strongly the hazards that a messianic civil government poses to the family. That point cannot be over emphasized. Mark was talking about government education. We need to quit calling the public schools... call them government schools, tax financed government schools. But also the problem of taxation. With increased taxation it becomes more and more difficult for the man to go out and work and to support the family. The state, I believe, actively tries to force, destroy the family in many cases by attempting to force the woman to go out to work outside the home or out in society. And then, of course, there is the problem of the bureaucratic agencies, Health and Human Services, welfare. We presently have a Congress that is wanting to reverse some of the problems with respect to welfare, but, as most of you know, the way that the welfare system is presently constituted, it encourages and subsidize immorality because if a young woman, a young mother gets married, she loses money. Well, that is an actively destructive work with respect to the family. So I think that we need always to be mistrustful of a messianic state with regard to its attitude toward the... toward the biblical family. We can’t over emphasize that point. [00:12:43]

[Rushdoony] I want to interject something here...[edit]

[Rushdoony] I want to interject something here. Since World War II child rearing has become much, much more difficult. Before World War II the public schools were still subject to a great deal of Christian influence. The ministers would bring in speakers that came to their churches for a student body meeting. So you would have a student body meeting called by the principal to hear some missionary or evangelist for 15 or 20 minutes of a half hour session. And there was a great deal of Christianity still in the school, so much so that when I was growing up I didn’t know in our hometown of any families who were Atheists except one. And everybody thought they were crazy.

There were umpteen churches in that little town of, oh, maybe 3000 to 4000 and only one was mildly liberal and had very few members. Everybody went to church. Everybody believed.

The community was such that even if you were not actively involved, the teaching went into the children. Now you have a contrary teaching seeping into the families from the outside so that many, many fine people, whether in the church or out of the church, are seeing their children attacked by forces from the community and from the school, influences that are actively anti Christian and very anti family.

[Voice] You are saying then, Rush, that parents today need to be even more vigilant than they have ever been in child rearing. [00:15:07]

[Rushdoony] Yes...[edit]

[Rushdoony] Yes. I remember one boy. This was when I was in grade school and it was in a big city at that time who really got clobbered because his father overheard him referring to my old man. And he felt it. He was whipped for that, because his father said, “That is disrespectful and I will not allow it.”

Now the father wasn’t {?} very nominally a church member, went very occasionally, but he still had a respect for authority and required it of his son, because I know the boy was really rubbing his rear end afterwards.

[Voice] Well, unfortunately, people can’t pass on to their kids what they don’t know and we are living in a time when the vast majority of society has no knowledge of what went on in the generation that you are speaking of. And people are going to have to relearn these skills in order to pass them on to their kids.

[Rushdoony] Yes.

[Voice] It is really charitable to call government... the government education system a school, because the kids learn nothing. School implies that the kids come away with some useful knowledge and the only knowledge they come away with is destructive knowledge.

[Voice] That is right.

[Voice] So you can only ... you can only call these government indoctrination centers.

[Voice] Yes.

Rush, you alluded earlier to the problem of Feminism. We don’t want to miss the point—and some of us were talking about this earlier—of the egalitarian view of marriage and Feminism with regard to marriage. I saw Dorothy over there shaking her head. I know that is one of her pet issues, but that has been utterly disruptive and unfortunately it has invaded Christian thinking that authority in the home should be a 50-50 proposition. But although the ... the word of God gives great latitude to the wife to be the guide of the home, she is responsible to her husband. The Bible in no uncertain terms claims the husband must be the head of the home and there cannot be a biblical home. There cannot be a home at all unless the husband takes his responsibilities as head of the home seriously. And if he doesn’t, the effects on society will be equally destructive. This society that we have today cannot exist forever as it is because of the failure of men in their families. [00:18:01]

A 50-50 proposition is an invitation to civil war.[edit]

[Rushdoony] A 50-50 proposition is an invitation to civil war.

[Voice] Yes.

[Voice] How many times have you heard a father abdicate his responsibility by saying, “If your mother says it is all right, you can go and do it”?

[Voice] Yes. That is right.

[Voice] That is just a prescription for trouble.

[Voice] That is right, because the kid learns very quickly how to play the two off against each other and then you have got real difficulty.

[Voice] And we have to be fair in our criticisms, because the... certainly radical Feminism is dangerous, but it was largely because the men had abdicated their responsibilities that the Feminists rushed in to fill the vacuum. But if men will take the lead that they should, then godly women, good women will follow the lead in many cases, not all cases. But in many cases they will follow the lead as they should.

[Voice] I think many of them hunger for it.

[Voice] Oh, yes.

[Voice] God has placed something in a woman. Well, the Bible says, does it not, in Genesis three that her desire shall be to her husband. So it is unnatural of a woman to... to want to lead where a man is concerned. And unfortunately many men push them into leading when they should not do so and are not called to do so.

[Voice] It is interesting that in the era of the liberated woman we also hear of the... the pain and the agony that these liberated women go through in making these decisions and how agonizing this matters of career versus family are... is and the agony of the fact that they put off child bearing until they are... they are 40 years old and now the agony is because they can’t conceive.

[Voice] Yes.

[Voice] Or the agony is of having a Downs syndrome children... child because they waited until they were 40 before they had their first child. And so this appears just to... to be making them miserable as well and... and they are... they are on talk shows and so forth. They are constantly anguishing about these... these problems they see themselves in. So it does make women miserable.

[Voice] A classic statement of the inconsistencies of modern Feminism is Camille Paglia Sexual Personna and the sequel to that which is Sex, Art and Modern Culture. We certainly couldn’t recommend the tenor of the book and the theme of the book, but she goes out of her way to demonstrate the very things that you are talking about. I would commend to those listening to this tape to read how that this radical pro abortionist, pro pornography, pagan, Feminist has more understanding than many Christians with regard to Feminism and its utter inconsistency.

[Rushdoony] John, you have been very silent.

[Voice] Well, I have had a lot of exposure to Feminists and I made the mistake a long time ago of ceding ground and accepting the... the... the 50-50 proposition. And I, like Douglas said. You can’t teach what you don’t know. That is what I thought was right and I didn’t hear in any Christian church that I went to that it was wrong. I never heard of the concept of priest, prophet or king. And so I was one of these dunces that kind of went along with that. And I have seen its destructiveness and I have seen how it can tear apart families and there is only one way to go and that is where the man rules his family under God and it is something that I am trying to learn. I am playing catch up and that is why I commended Mark and Andrew so much, because they caught on a lot faster than I did. And I will tell you. Listeners, men, if you are in a situation and if you are not ruling your family and if you are caving in to your Feminist wife or your Christian Feminist wife, you better stop doing that because you are going to end up very sorry if you ... if you keep it up. [00:22:24]

[Voice] It is crucial to recognize that we cannot overturn...[edit]

[Voice] It is crucial to recognize that we cannot overturn God’s established created order with impunity. We can’t take a fish out of the water and expect him to fly. We can’t take a bird out of the air and expect him to swim. And, thus, we can’t invert God’s order for the family and expect there to be success in the family or in society or in the church or anywhere else. And one reason we have such a lack of social cohesion today is because of our inversion of the roles in the family which is to say we can’t sin and get away with it. Galatians six says, “Be not deceived, God is not mocked. Whatever we sow, we will reap.”

Well, we have sowed Egalitarianism and we have reaped the evils in our modern culture.

[Voice] Sociologists continue to puzzle over the reason there is such a high suicide rate among teenagers in this country. The ... the destruction of the family is a manifestation of hating God.

[Rushdoony] Yes.

[Voice] That is right.

[Voice] And we, you know, we have been warned that you hate God and you are going to get death.

[Voice] That is right.

[Voice] And the... the... the suicide is a direct result of that. It is... it is the... it is the unfortunate consequences.

[Rushdoony] I think it is interesting to point out that a book first published, oh, 15 years ago or more and now reprinted with a changed title has withstood a great deal of abuse and yet it is being recognized by various scholars as a valid anthropological study. The title is Why Men Rule by Steven Goldberg, put out by, I believe, the Open Court Publishing Company. And what Goldberg says is that all you have to do is to look at history, sociology, look at the aptitude and achievement tests of men and women and you can see that while men maybe surpassed by a woman in various spheres such as practical reason. Women are much more practical. In two spheres, abstract thinking and what we would call dominion. Men are clearly out in front. That is the way God made them. That is what Scripture tells us. And Goldberg feels that Feminism is fighting against the real world. And therefore it has no future. It is a book well worth getting. [00:25:26]

The original title was ...[edit]

The original title was The Inevitability of Patriarchy. The new printing Why Men Rule is somewhat expanded as he has added more comments and more data.

[Voice] Another... another thing, too, that I think it hobbles people is in the evangelical world is this notion of putting your family before God. And that is a rampant tendency. It is a deadly tendency.

[Voice] Yes.

[Voice] And it is something that because we were not brought up with a systematic approach to Scripture or we didn’t start with Adam and Adam’s role, like Mark was saying and... and Eve and Eve’s role, because we started somewhere in John or some other area like that where Jesus loves you and we don’t understand the comprehensive order that God has instilled and I think we are going to be seeing a lot of men who are going to be awakened to their duties and a lot of divorce, a lot of divorce is going to come in the future.

I have a very dear friend who is having troubles with a rebellious wife. And he was trying to have a Bible study in his home and his wife had the nerve to say, “Why don’t you knock that stuff off because our favorite television show is on.”

Now in some areas and some people’s mind that would be treason to do something like that, but in a... in a lot of the households across the evangelical landscape that most people would say, “Ok, honey, I will wrap it up and... and we will just watch the TV.”

So it is ... it is a very serious problem and it is... we are going to see more and more of it in the future. [00:27:32]

[Voice] I think I should mention also very quickly...[edit]

[Voice] I think I should mention also very quickly that the church herself has not been exempt from having an assault on the family. There are churches in this country that have all sorts of programs every night of the week. I have observed some of these churches and some at this table have also dragging children there, separating the children and I don’t want to go into it, but the whole idea of the Sunday school and the junior church, separating children from the public worship is just unprecedented to covenantalists. So the church herself can be guilty of this and we need to be careful that the church doesn’t become an instrument of assault on the family.

[Voice] Well, and it has to become less of a social club than a teaching, a Bible teaching opportunity and most churches today are involved in this ... in the entertainment business. They have been pushed into it, they feel, because of the competition with television and Sunday football and sporting events and so forth. So they have to make their presentation as entertaining as possible in order to get people to come out at all.

[Rushdoony] A moment ago I said, please turn your tape over at this time. And I think Bob switched the mic off before John Upton made his remark, “Turn the tape over at this time, if your wife permits...”

Douglas, you want to say something.

[Voice] Well, the ... the social engineering that the secular Humanists have been forcing down our society’s throat has taken a turn within my lifetime, within the past, I guess, generation to masculinize women. And it is a role that many of them are very uncomfortable with, but some of them seem to relish. Women seem... there is some women who fantasize about the opportunity of commanding thousands of men, for instance, on an aircraft carrier or commanding men in battle. [00:30:09]

[Rushdoony] Well, Douglas, you have told us about an...[edit]

[Rushdoony] Well, Douglas, you have told us about an attorney in a particular county, a woman, who had gone to court with lumberjack boots on and very undignified manners.

[Voice] Well, I am happy to say that she is no longer ... she has been disbarred. Number one, because she was disrespectful in the courts that she went into, disrespectful both in her demeanor as well as her dress and she finally crossed over the line and committed so many breaches of professional ethics that she was ... had so many complaints that she was disbarred and has since left this area.

But this was... she was probably the most glaring example of this strident feminist, masculinized type of Feminist that I have seen locally. But she contributed to her own destruction.

[Voice] I would like to bring up another are of assault on the family that we haven’t mentioned, but there is one that is major and that is the modern entertainment industry...

[Rushdoony] Yes.

[Voice] ...and television and all that sort of thing. We have John Upton with us and he is a film producer, an award winning film producer so we are certainly not saying that everything in film and television is wrong. It can be as a mighty tool for good, but so much of modern television and Hollywood is governed by Antinomianism. No, by Paganism. And what it communicates to our children and the family is often the very antithesis of what is... should be taught and what is taught in the Word of God and what should be taught in the Church and in the family. Maybe we should care to comment... we should bring that up for discussion.

[Voice] Yeah, some of the top actors, writers and producers and I am talking about the top ones, the... the people that so-called traditional values, evangelical people we will never get a meeting with. These are the people that determine what you see on television. They have gurus and they have sensitivity sessions and these men and women literally meet in the homes of... in... at ... at Malibu or Hollywood and ... and they talk about the culture and they talk about the... the right type of images and... and... and so what happens is that you have this sort of... and sort it is not sort of, it is literal instructions. And a show to me is always becomes ragged after a while because you begin to see the strings. [00:33:05]

A good cop show will start off for a year a great season...[edit]

A good cop show will start off for a year a great season where you have the good guys and the bad guys, bang, bang, shoot them up. It is interesting, gritty drama. And then the writers and the producers start to say, “Well, let’s do a show...” Last night, for instance, the show about an abortionist who ... who was killed and you had these wacko anti abortion pro lifers who were yelling and screaming and ... and saying well, let’s kill this abortionist for Jesus, which is obviously a... a hideous and sinful thing to do. You don’t murder people.

But that is what the mindset is of Hollywood and so... so when you begin to see the strings it... it becomes very uninteresting.

[Voice] I want to commend... I want to commend Michael Medvid’s book Hollywood Versus America in which he demonstrates some of those very things. In fact, one of the chief points as I think John was mentioning this. Those who are Bible believing Christians, conservative Roman Catholic priests, Bible believing protestants are almost always depicted in an unfavorable light and almost never in a favorable light in modern television and movies.

[Voice] Yeah.

[Voice] Well, there was a drama here the other night where I think it was on Dr. Quinn medicine ...

[Voice] It is a woman.

[Voice] Medicine woman where they just can’t help themselves. They have got to depict every Christian as being a book burning bigot, racist, you name it. They can’t... they can’t help themselves. And if this is their view, I really feel for them, because if they can’t imagine society improving itself, if they can only imagine the worst, then they... they just live in a terrible world. They must live in a living hell. They are... they are ... they are ... their mental attitudes or mental health must be severely impaired if they can’t imagine society improving itself by some means.

[Voice] We must recognize that Hollywood is not neutral. I mean, John was basically mentioning that a minute ago. They certainly have an agenda. Sometimes it is not as clear as at other times, but the political correctness ideas certainly influence some shows, not all. But we need to recognize that agenda. And when our children are watching these things we need to use that as a means to point out to them the error. Look. Do you see what this is? This is a mistake. This is what is trying to be said.

[Voice] Well, not... not too many parents ride herd on what their kids watch. [00:36:03]

[Voice] Yes, and that is dangerous...[edit]

[Voice] Yes, and that is dangerous.

[Voice] The other problem is the many parents are... are weak in their ability to maintain some kind of discipline over what their kids watch. And, you know, kids are just funnels. I mean..

[Voice] That is right.

[Voice] ... you just pour in unrelated input data. I remember I heard one educator say that by the time kids hit the kindergarten they have had nearly 5000 hours of what the educators call unrelated input data. And then they spend the next 12 years...

[Voice] ...processing...

[Voice] ...relating that data.

[Voice] Yeah, yeah.

[Voice] ... in from their perspective. So the... the challenge to a parent is enormous, because they have got to maintain some kind of discipline on how their children are informed and... and what the... how they are educated. And it is very difficult because the peer pressure, not only the pressure on the kids from other kids, but the pressure on parents from other parents.

[Voice] That is right.

[Voice] ...is tremendous. And it takes a lot of strength.

[Voice] Yes.

[Voice] ...a lot of moral courage and a lot of strength to draw that line.

[Voice] Well, one thing that Chalcedon has done over the years and is doing is encouraging parents to have that courage that they should have in supporting Christian education and that sort of thing. That is an area that we must emphasize even more in the future, because as Rush was indicating, we have to be more vigilant in this matter in the future as society in this particular period of history seems to be getting darker, although the tide will turn and is turning, but there are still great enemies of the faith that we must... we must oppose as fathers and as mothers.

[Voice] It is the only salvation of this culture and this society. There is noting else. There is nothing else... there is no government program, there is no government answer that is going to do anything but continue in a downward spiral until we get back to the stone age.

[Voice] But the thing that ... though I am constantly reminded of it is all in God’s hands.

[Voice] That is right.

[Voice] We have seen people who were brought up in a reformed Christian reconstruction world going through churches who have stumbled, who fall away from the faith. We have seen people who were grown up in pagan households where they are watching their parents shoplifting to get by who have grown to magnificence. We have seen Samuel who was a beacon in his time who... who raised two very despicable sons. So these things that we are talking about are very important, but there is no guarantee. God will do what he chooses to do as long as we obey. And it is up to him in the long run.

[Voice] That is true, but we also... and I ... God is sovereign, but we have to recognize that the Bible says that if we train up a child in the way he should go when he is old he will not depart. So it is true that God is sovereign and as a Calvinist I would be the last one to dispute that point, but the difference between the Reconstructionist who had the child that went bad and the pagan who had a child that was saved is that godly Christians have promises with regard to their children and we need to, as it were, hang on to the horns of the altar and trust God that those children will grow up, yes, ultimately, certainly in God in his decretive Word will determine that happens. But our responsibility is not to peer the mind of God, to probe the mind of God. Our responsibility is to fulfill what God has called us as parents to do. [00:39:46]

[Voice] And hope for the best...[edit]

[Voice] And hope for the best.

[Voice] And hope and work and pray for the best. That is right.

[Voice] Yes.

[Voice] That is right.

[Voice] I think something that needs to be mentioned also that we ... we... touched on it a little before was that we often hear it... heard it said that family should come first and it is in this air of family values that family should come first when that is really not the priority that God set up.

[Voice] That is right.

[Voice] A covenantal family means that a family has a work to do under God and we are not to be self centered on ourselves as individuals and we are not to be self centered on ourselves...

[Voice] Yes. That is right.

[Voice] ... as a family, but we are to be ... to be centered on what we are supposed to be doing here for God and men can pervert that sometimes and become workaholics and abandon their families and lose the concept of the idea of rest, for instance, and become totally consumed and even destroyed by their love of their work or their infatuation with their work. But we have to remember that that is what God put us here to do is to do something for him.

[Voice] The family, like the Church, is not the end. It is the means to the end. And Rush and I were ... and John were making a tape the other day. Rush was making a tape about the Church, but some people believe the Church is an end in itself. And, of course, that is a great mistake. But the family... what you are saying, Mark, is the family also is not an end in itself. It is here to exercise godly dominion. And I think evangelicals, you notice just lately, they have gotten into this really traditional family value business and having a fun time together. But the family is called upon God to work as you said and it can be destructive if a family doesn’t do that.

[Rushdoony] Well, one of the things that has recurred is that trust in children and their innocence and it has been deadly in society whenever you have had it. The Romantic movement....

[Voice] Yes.

[Rushdoony] ... of course, created it in our culture. William Wordsworth as a leader in such thinking and it is basic to our laws now. You don’t lay hands on the dear innocent child because you are harming something very precious. You are damaging the ego of this little innocent creature. [00:42:24]

Well, that kind of idea has recurred before and one of the saddest episodes was during the Middle Ages in the children’s crusade, a horrifying event. A book was written about it some years ago. Tens of thousands of children who listening to the preaching and believing the myths of their day in Europe felt that if they with their dear innocence marched on Jerusalem God would pen the seas, open the gates and deliver everything into their hands. So they started out. And they wound up being sold as slaves to the Islamic world. It was a horrifying thing. Vast numbers of them. It was because of this misguided belief in a child’s innocence.

Well, we don’t have anything comparable o the children’s crusade in our time except the belief in the innocence of children. And it is proving to be as destructive of children and of families as it did in the children’s crusade.

[Voice] I noticed even Benjamin Spock has been commenting in recent years about how we are spoiling our children. He was once an advocate of child psychology.

[Rushdoony] Yes.

[Voice] And taking into consideration the feelings of the child and... and now he is bemoaning the fact that our society has spoiled our children and that we ... that parents aren’t taking control.

[Voice] I hope he is not getting ready to write another book.

[Rushdoony] Menninger, the psychiatrist wrote a book after World War II on the cruelty, the crime of punishment. And yet in the early 80s he wrote another book condemning people, no self consciousness of what he had done to create that kind of thing condemning people who were indulgent to their children and didn’t spank them.

[Voice] Well he may be a slow learner, but at least he learns.

[Voice] You know, this romantic idea the child innocence, though is one of the key presuppositions of government schools.

[Rushdoony] Yes.

[Voice] They believe the children come in there with the blank slate, the philosopher said and they want to ... and those little innocent minds and they want to fill those minds, of course, with their own humanistic evil. [00:45:09]

Emma Marwheedle and the kindergarten...[edit]

[Rushdoony] In The Messianic Character of American Education I had a chapter on Emma Marwheedle and the kindergarten, because what she did was to insist that the world was going to be saved through children. So if you started them with the right kind of songs and this sweet gush, they would grow up to be sweet and loving, dear little children growing to be lovable adults. It was going to be the salvation of the world.

Literally she said that kindergarten will save the world.

[Voice] Rush, recently there were a group of Bible believing evangelical women who got a hold of a copy of your book Toward a Christian Marriage.

[Rushdoony] Yes.

[Voice] And they suggested it be burned. How do you see an end to this hostility by evangelical Christian women who {?} want to be ruled over?

[Rushdoony] Well, it is going to end when they die for themselves personally, because they are going to find themselves in hell. They don’t like any authority and when that book first came out about 15 years or so ago a number of women who claimed to be very, very devout Bible believing Christians who wrote savagely decrying it as unchristian. Well, they are not any different today. Either you agree with me and disagree with God or you are a nasty non Christian. They find Christianity not in terms of the Word of God, but in terms of themselves.

[Voice] One of the big chestnuts for them is this concept of love, this romantic concept they have of how Christ loved the Church. Would somebody that has some insight care to comment on how does Christ love the Church?

[Voice] Well, this... I am glad you brought that up, John. This idea of love today, modern love, is so far from biblical love it is not funny. Love in the Word of God is covenantal commitment. The Bible says ... Jesus says, “If you love me, keep my commandment. This is love that you do the will of the Father.” And God demonstrated his love toward us in the covenant of grace in sending his Son to die on the cross for us. It is not ... love is not a sentiment. And love is not a feeling. One of the worst things that people say today is, “Well, you need to get married if you fall into love.” [00:48:10]

But love is not something that you fall into, because...[edit]

But love is not something that you fall into, because then if you fall out of love you can get a divorce.

Somebody wisely said, “You don’t marry who you love, you love whom you marry.”

It is amazing Rush knows that the young Puritan men when they were single they wouldn’t fall into love. They would say, “I have taken my apprenticeship. I have learned what my life’s calling is.” They would write it in their diaries. Now, God, help me to find a good woman to assist me in my life’s task.

That doesn’t mean that there is no feeling or affection in marriage, but all of this must be grounded upon a covenantal relationship. That is what love is. It is covenant faithfulness. And that was, of course, Christ’s love for the Church, his faithfulness to the covenant of grace with the Father and our love for him is covenant faithfulness.

[Voice] Well, the marriages were largely family arranged anyway.

[Voice] That is right.

[Voice] You didn’t... you didn’t go out looking.

[Voice] Is romantic idea of love is just utterly destructive and it is supported on soap operas and that is why there is so much immorality. Every day when I get up I don’t always have the same sort of internal feeling or affection for my wife, but that doesn’t mean that I don’t love her anymore.

[Voice] I heard one of those soap opera people interviewed... being interviewed and it was ... the interview was on the lines of, you know, the... so... being in this particular aspect of the entertainment business. It is a business. And this actor said, “I sell dreams to women.” He said, “That is the business I am in.” And it is the same... I have heard the same exactly identical statement made by Julio Iglesias, you know, who sings these very flowing languid songs is he says, “I sell dreams. That is the business I am in.”

[Voice] That is what men do when they date, too.

[Voice] That is right.

[Voice] That is what women want.

[Voice] You know...

[Voice] You said they are... they are dating is so unrelated to the needs of marriage because what is considered a good date in popular culture is an entertaining date.

[Voice] Yes, that is right.

[Voice] And {?} something that is romantic...

[Voice] ...something that is not really very much at all related to real life and a marriage relationship.

[Voice] No, that is right.

[Voice] That is right.

[Voice] They want something out of a Barbara Cortland romance novel.

[Voice] You know, that is ... I am going to go out on a limb here, but I want to tell you something. One of my pet peeves and I believe should be the church’s pet peeves is this spate of Christian romance novels that have been published over the last 15 years that all of these Christian women are going out and buying just a sort of baptized version of romance novels where the man comes and picks the woman up and they live happily ever after.

In no marriage does anybody live happily ever after. That is utter nonsense.

People say, “Well, we have got divorced because of incompatibility.”

No, that is why you get married. Of course you are incompatible. You can’t take one many from one area of the country, one woman from another who have different families, different backgrounds. Of course there is going to be incompatibility. That is what marriage is all about, working through those difficulties.

[Voice] You know, I was on a ... a double date years ago and it was a very romantic movie that two couples went to and the... the leading man was one of these handsome sensitive types who I later found out was a homosexual. And it was just a wonderful love story and we were driving home and the other couple in the back seat, the wife turned to the husband said, “You S O B, why can’t you be more like him?” [00:51:39]

And that is what they believe in...[edit]

And that is what they believe in.

[Voice] That is right.

[Voice] I mean, the... the.... and Rush told me they... the women start with their Barbie dolls and they create scenarios about what their life is going to be like and what their husband is going to be like.

[Voice]

I have always been a little startled by the fact that most women cannot recognize a homosexual man unless he is really flagrant.

[Rushdoony] Yeah.

[Voice] That has always...

[Voice] The fact is...

[Voice] For many women homosexual men are often very externally extractive it seems.

[Voice] Yeah.

[Rushdoony] Well, my grandmother used to tell me and her many other grandchildren that he should let me arrange your marriage. You kids don’t have sense enough to pick you own husband or wife and most of you will make mistakes.

Well, I think there is a lot that can be said in favor of her position.

[Voice] Oh, absolutely.

[Rushdoony] She was a very, very remarkable woman, really a great woman.

[Voice] This... this being in love, as I am convinced is a... is a condition of temporary insanity. Neither party knows ... has the slightest idea what they are doing.

[Voice] That is right.

[Voice] Romantic love, that.

[Voice] Yes.

[Voice] Romantic, that is right.

[Voice] Well, I get a kick out of the ... I heard a story the other night where there is a university, a so-called Christian university where the ... the women are not allowed... the girls are not allowed to use the high dive because if they can use the high dive then the boys can see up and see them in a bathing suit which would be very destructive to the situation. But I will bet my bottom dollar that not one of the marriage and family classes in that university teaches about men ruling, about women being submissive and obedient.

So while we are ... while they are focusing on the externals and they are...

[Rushdoony] That is right.

[Voice] ...the police that are making sure that nobody is holding hands.

[Voice] That is right.

[Voice] ... they are still the cancer is still very much a part of the... of the... of... of... of the program there.

[Voice] You know, that is...

[Voice] We need to keep reiterating submissive and obedient under God’s law.

[Voice] That is right.

[Voice] ... because it is very easy to be misinterpreted.

[Voice] Yeah, macho Rambos in the house are just as destructive as feminized women. I mean, men are required to rule according to the law of God.

[Rushdoony] Yes.

[Voice] Well, if a man doesn't fear God... I mean, think about it. Think about the awesome responsibility a man has with a woman who trusts him and who says, “Ok, honey, I am putting my life, my trust, everything into your hands.” Now that man is going to have some problems when he is in front of God.

[Voice] That is right.

[Voice] Because... and if he is... and so I... I think it has to... to start with the fear of God.

[Voice] Yes.

[Voice] And if you fear him and if you know that he can put you away for eternally for your actions, then you are going to be a good steward and a good leader.

[Voice] And the Bible requires that we give honor unto our wives as the weaker vessel, recognizing that they are ... they don’t have the emotional stamina that men do. Therefore the Bible says that we must cherish our wives.

[Rushdoony] Yes.

Well, our time is almost up. Did anyone want to make the last statement before we conclude?

[Voice] Mark, you have to hurry home and do the dishes, don’t you?

[Voice] No, but my son got to do the dishes.

[Voice] Oh, ok, good. Good.

[Voice] Training early.

[Voice] Good. The women in the house are happy then, right?

[Voice] Watching television.

[Rushdoony] Well, thank you all for listening and God bless you.