Social maturity sufficient to make a contribution to society.
While the arena of the home is an essential and inescapable focus of a man's responsibility, he is also called out of the home into the workplace and the larger world as a witness, and as one who will make a contribution to the common good.
God has created human beings as social creatures, and even though our ultimate citizenship is in heaven, we must also fulfill our citizenship on earth. A boy must learn to fulfill a political responsibility as a citizen, and a moral responsibility as a member of a human community. The Christian man bears a civilizational responsibility, and boys must be taught to see themselves as shapers of the society even as the church is identified by our Lord as both salt and light.
Similarly, a Christian man must learn how to relate to unbelievers, both as witness and as fellow citizens of an earthly kingdom.
I love that he’s not even bothering to have real words now. “Civilizational”? What in the WORLD is that?
I mean, I have a few guesses from context, but really, that’s a word only Mohler knows – because he made it up. It doesn’t exist in any dictionary that I know of.
But I digress.
I’ll say this right now: I hate the idea that the man in the family is the breadwinner. With women still making 80 cents to every man’s dollar (for the same work), any implication that this is the way it SHOULD be rankles me to no end. Additionally, as a woman with two higher education degrees, solid writing skills, and an extroverted personality, I get extremely irked at the idea that my “place” is to stay home and clean and prepare dinner and maybe even home school our multiple children (because, as Mohler has already explained, sex is for baby-making!).
I also think it’s incredibly disingenuous to suggest that, simply by virtue of being biologically male, a man is somehow “called” to a greater duty outside the home, as though women do not have similar callings placed on our lives and cannot “make a contribution to the common good” except in narrowly defined fashions.
This gets worse as Mohler’s point goes on – I agree with him that our citizenship is in heaven, and that this concept doesn’t mean that we eschew all earthly duties (my number of political posts and political leanings indicate that I most certainly don’t feel neglecting my citizenship duties is part of the Christian journey). But the sentence: “A boy must learn to fulfill a political responsibility as a citizen, and a moral responsibility as a member of a human community” is total and complete bullshit.
Women vote in greater numbers than men. Women have a tendency to be highly involved in political movements and protests on both sides of the aisle. True, women are less likely to appear as politicians, but a lot of that comes from the massive amount of scrutiny that women face simply be virtue of being women – look at how Hillary Clinton and Michelle Bachmann are both treated by the media in sexist and demeaning ways.
AND THEN, Mohler has the gall to say it is specifically men who are “shapers of society.”
I almost don’t have the words to describe how much that enrages me. Behind every major rights movement of the last century, women have been at the center.
Women getting the vote in 1920? Well, duh. We can even step back further in time to what sparked that nearly 100 year battle – moral reform societies run by middle class women in New York and Boston that began to fight for the property and civil rights of widows and prostitutes or “ruined women” in their cities.
The Civil Rights Movement of the 1950s and 1960s? A lot of it was sparked by a politically active woman who was engaging in a form of civil disobedience – Rosa Parks (In all fairness, though, we could move back a bit further to the murder of Emmett Till but a bunch of white men for the crime of whistling at a white woman, but in the narrative of most people, Rosa Parks is at the center of the Civil Rights movement and there is no doubt that she played a very important role).
The current LGBT movement? Both men and women are represented in almost equal measure in protests and fights over the laws.
Not to mention, there are a number of smaller movements sparked by women and brought about because of the action of women. Women have played an equal role in political movements for centuries – the only difference is that the women in these movements have been silenced by history and credit is given to the men who helped them out (again, look at the set up the moral reform societies to see this on full display – women’s movement weren’t considered legitimate unless there was some man helping out in a leadership capacity).
To say that men are “the shapers of society” is ridiculous, archaic, and ignorant of actual history.
To use that assertion to tell men to become more engaged in the political process and to assert their power over their female counterparts – it is your duty as a man to be involved politically! – is downright disgusting.
Mohler’s last sentence, here, makes little to no sense in light of his first two paragraphs – indeed, it seems almost tacked on. Judging based on what he just described, being able to relate to “unbelievers” would be a no-brainer. If you’re going to participate in the political realm, you have to deal with all kinds – just as you have to do in EVERY SINGLE PART of your life, provided your are not just staying in an Evangelical bubble (which is entirely possible).
But, again, the way he phrases this reinforces an “us vs. them” mentality – rather than relating to non-believers because they’re human and that’s what we should do, we relate to them with an ulterior motive, with the outside idea of witnessing to them, which is never a good way to get to know someone. It turns the person in question back into an object, a thing to be won over to your side, and not a person in of him or herself. And that’s not a good way for any good citizen to operate.
So, to sum up: Men are the “shapers of society” and are therefore called to be involved in “earthly citizenship.” Women, you can stay in the kitchen.