A blogger named Bnonn has recently arrived on Dalrock’s radar by accusing him and associates of being woman-hating cultists. Not the most original accusation ever made against us but one commenter thought Bnonn was reasonably patriarchal, anti-feminist and pro-Scripture. Having already made light of the guy threatening to make a website against us, I felt obligated to check and see if perhaps the guy was a potential ally who got started off on the wrong foot with us.
Well… he has problems I have trouble even defining despite years in the Manosphere. On the one hand, Bnonn took the Red Pill. On the other hand, he coughed the Pill back up and invented “household theology”, my term, to justify women holding authority over men in violation of plain Scripture… which is the feminist agenda and surely not patriarchy from any perspective.
The nature of the sexual marketplace today is very different than throughout most of human history. In most cultures and times, it is not a cold, brutal fact of life in some winners-and-losers sense. Focusing on the United States, even thirty years ago it was extraordinarily uncommon for anyone to remain unmarried. Somehow, everyone seemed to find a spouse; by the age of 30 over 85% of people had married, and by the age of 45 over 95% had.See Percentage of U.S. women never married, by age, 1980 & 2015. Although the numbers do wax and wane through US history, the times when they were especially low were the result of war. But today, in the space of one peacetime generation, these numbers have changed dramatically: at age 30, over 40% of people are still unmarried; by age 45, they’ve just managed to catch up with the 30-year-olds of 1980. That’s a huge shift, but the fact that it has shifted should illustrate that it’s not pairing off per se which is the issue. Something else is going on.
That’s an odd conclusion. How did he come to think that people are still pairing off yet not getting married? The situation is obviously not common-law marriages replacing licensed marriages.
What is that thing? Most simply, I think it is the teardown of the household.
He has this theology about the household being the building block of society… not meaning the nuclear family because nations also count as households. It sounds a lot like Papism but he wants it applied Old Testament-style, not apostolic-succession style. A Papist Judaizer?
It is not the teardown of marriage, as you will generally hear Christians lament. That is too reductionistic. If it were merely marriage which was under attack, Christianity would offer a more effective bulwark—but lots of Christians value marriage, yet marriage rates in the assembly are down and divorce rates are up.
Wild idea here… maybe the institution of marriage isn’t supernaturally off-limits to the devil. Marriage must be fine because the Church would never allow marriage to be torn down! /facepalm
Neither is it the teardown of the patriarch, as many red pill pundits say. If that were so, then the mere reinstatement of patriarchy would solve the problem—but it typically produces cultism instead.
This is probably where his tweet of us being cultists comes from. We think men should wield authority; he thinks the household should wield authority. And women are part of the household. Hmm.
Memo to Bnonn, patriarchy is men having authority over women. It’s not about resurrecting the Biblical Patriarchs or installing new ones. In a few moments, in fact, you’ll be the one calling for Priest-Kings.
Rather, the effects we’re seeing today are the result of the household itself suddenly collapsing after over a century of having its key structural elements progressively weakened and removed. Tearing down the household obviously does involve tearing down marriage and the patriarch at the same time, but it’s a mistake to conflate the struts with the structure. When we do that, we miss the forest for the trees.
This is him spitting up the Red Pill.
For instance, I believe this teardown began much longer ago than most people realize: it started with the rejection of biblical republicanism in favor of flat democracy, rather than with what we’d today think of as egalitarianism or liberalism or feminism. Once social order began to be determined entirely at the individual level, with each person exercising equal, autonomous “micro-rule” through their personal vote, everything we’re seeing today inevitably followed.
Sigh. He certainly talks like a Papist, one of those people so cognitively dependent upon Church structure that he still thinks Protestants are the root of all evil. If only we would obey the authorities properly then we’d all have nice domestic wives… or something to that effect.
By the way, I’ve noticed Papists in Protestant circles also. I don’t use the term to mean the RCC specifically. There’s a certain mindset that just can’t handle life without an externally provided framework. Thus, I now distinguish between Catholics who follow Christ and Papists who follow Rome (or in Prot Land, Christians who always obey the State).
Bnonn’s Theology of the Household
To know what is appropriate for women in business, we need to first go back to what is appropriate for women in the household, and then figure out how business relates to that.
This is because the household is the primitive unit of society. It is the originator of order in the world. Adam’s household was also the original kingdom. As God’s son, Adam was a vassal king, representing God’s rule in creation.
This is the literary crime of eisegesis, the process of interpreting a text or portion of text in such a way that the process introduces one’s own presuppositions, agendas, or biases into and onto the text.
God is the originator of order in the world; I’ve never heard Him be described as a household in Scripture or even Trinitarian theology. Similarly, “Adam’s household” is a concept created by Bnonn, not Scripture. Adam & Eve never even had a marriage, so far as we’re told. Adam was God’s creation, not God’s son. Only Christ is God’s son; the famous John 3:16.
Bnonn claims these are households in order to support his preexisting household theology.
[Adam’s] house’s mission was to expand and carry on God’s work of establishing right order in the world.
No. The command was “be fruitful and multiply”, not “restore right order”. The best way for Adam to have achieved the latter would have been to refuse to reproduce and died for his crime, as justice demanded. Intentionally breeding more humans condemned to sin, that was God’s Will but not restoration of “right order”.
Furthermore, if that command was to all humanity then God contradicted himself in Christ’s teaching about eunuchs, that one could be a voluntary eunuch for God’s sake.
Furthermore, God imposed curses on Adam & Eve that they were powerless to undo.
(compare how Jesus, in the gospel which especially emphasizes his sonship, repeatedly speaks of doing only what the Father has given him to do)
Yes. God sent Christ to undo the works of the devil, which all humanity from Adam to now could not. That is why Christ is my savior and Adam is not.
So a household is a kingdom in microcosm. As it expands and becomes many households, the kingdom in turn expands into its fullness. But it does not fundamentally change form; it only grows into maturity. This is why Israel as a national kingdom is still called the “house of Israel” (e.g. Exodus 40:38).
This is the crux of his theology and is obviously not based on Scripture.
The purpose of marriage is to symbolize the ideal relationship between Christ and the Church. Wielding authority over third parties is not part of that symbolism. A man’s authority over his wife is not a king’s authority over his subjects.
God usually chooses evil men to wield power in this reality. He was the one who raised up Pharaoh to disobey Him, who chose Saul and Rehoboam and other disobedient and rebellious people… Jonah and Samson being notable. Having power over other humans, even having supernatural powers, is NOT REPEAT NOT an endorsement of virtue or proof of divine favor.
Israel was the literal father of the nation Israel, something made possible only by God’s careful planning. Defining nations by genealogy in the New Testament era is a hopeless task. The genetic permutations and combinations simply cannot be unraveled.
God carries his rule into the world through the fathers of households.
Scripture disagrees. When God acted through human intermediaries, He did so through men without regard to their marital status. Genesis Patriarchs, Moses, priests, prophets, kings, apostles and even His enemies. Only the accounts of Ruth, Hosea and Jesus involved a household and that by biological and genealogical necessity.
As a fast counterexample, Jeremiah surely carried God’s rule into the world yet God explicitly forbade him from marrying. Apostle Paul was also an element of bringing God’s kingdom into the world and he was glad to NOT be married at the time. They were not households.
Every father rules his own house, and as these houses multiply, the wiser fathers work together to rule their clans and tribes, all the way up to the national level.
That… is astonishingly wishful thinking. Which is it, “work together” or “rule their clans and tribes”? These are mutually exclusive concepts of gov’t. And why, in light of recorded history, does he think the wiser fathers rise to the top?
Notice he slipped in “up to the national level”. I think Bnonn doesn’t understand that nations are different entities from tribes. One is ethnically defined and the other is politically defined. He assumes that God wants all nations to resemble ancient Israel, conveniently forgetting both that Israel was uniquely designed for specific purposes and that the New Testament did away with any concern for genealogy and its related tribalism. “God can raise children of Abraham out of these rocks!”
The purpose of this is always right order: establishing and maintaining the relationships between people and God, and between people and people. A father is a priest and a king. This is the system we see Moses establish in Exodus 18; indeed, the virtuous woman of Proverbs 31 is married to a town patriarch who sits in the gate to judge disputes among the people, and to ensure the right order, the shalom of the houses under his care.
“A father is a priest and king?” Only within marriage, to honor the symbology of it but again, that situation does not involve authority over third parties.
What’s this about Exodus 18? That chapter describes Moses delegating his judicial responsibilities on the advice of his father-in-law. The criteria for new judges, per verse 21, was “capable men from all the people—men who fear God, trustworthy men who hate dishonest gain”. No mention of fatherhood at all. Also, no mention of allowing female judges. Also, no mention of priests, which in Moses’ time were Aaron and the Levites only.
Bnonn is twisting Proverbs 31 to claim that her husband’s household included ruling the town. This sort of eisegesis is how he claims all human authority is a “household”.
This brings us back to women in households and businesses. The virtuous woman of Proverbs 31 is a businesswoman. She assesses and buys a field; she plants a vineyard and sells the produce; she produces linen and trades it to merchants. But she does all this not as her own boss, nor as an employee, but as a wife. This is because the household was, until very recently, the basic unit of both order and production in society.
This is such a twisted reading of Proverbs 31 that I don’t hardly know where to begin. She’s a businesswoman who only does business as a wife, which makes no sense, and she operates a textiles factory but not as a boss or employee, and her household is full of both children and commercial vineyards.
The household is the basic unit of production in society? No, MEN are the basic unit of production. Don’t pretend women can work the mines or ranches. They need to keep home with the kids and make life more pleasant for her family, that’s what Proverbs 31 tries to say.
When the Bible speaks against women ruling, it is speaking against them representing God as father and king. It is speaking against them having priestly jurisdiction over how we must relate to God or others. But it is not speaking against them representing God at all, since otherwise they would not be the image of God! Women are made expressly to complete man’s representation of God, by filling and refining the world.
Translation, it’s okay for a woman to have authority over men so long as some man, somewhere has authority over her. This is what all his wordiness was leading towards.
Churchians do this same thing with marriage counseling. “Is your wife not obeying you? I shall intervene as God’s representative and determine whether she is right to disobey you!” Bnonn’s contribution is replacing the local priest with President Trump. That is not progress.
Bnonn is lying about women being made to complete man’s representation of God. God made Eve because Adam was lonely, not incomplete… remember God actually removed a rib from Adam in the process… and this “completion” was the person who led Adam into rebellion against God.
In fact, Adam being lonely is an image of God being lonely. He does not need humanity but He desires our company very much… enough to endure the Crucifixion to secure our freewilled loyalty.
For a woman to have authority in business is fine, because production is both a masculine and feminine mandate. A female executive is not representing God’s father-rule. But the business world itself is demented in that it has torn a rift between households and production, and this creates some very thorny difficulties for women to negotiate—difficulties they often negotiate poorly, and end up regretting when they are older. It masculinizes many women—short hair, power suits, bossy attitudes—and makes them both unattractive and miserable. If it is at all possible, it is far better for a woman to focus on stewarding the production of her own household than of an emaciated household-knockoff.
Let me close by simplifying this paragraph: Bnonn is unwilling to tell women No. Just like Adam in the Garden. Just like the complementarians. Just like the feminists.
Women are not to wield authority over men. Full stop.