''Winging It' with Stan Smith
Originally posted on 03/27/2019
Recently the Gillette company put out that offensive ad that warned of "toxic masculinity." The ad was buttressed by a new document put out by the APA that assures us that masculinity is bad for everyone, men included. We have it on good authority -- in the news media, in the entertainment industrial complex, in the social media, in the psychology sciences, in the shaving ads -- that it is bad to act like a man. indeed, if you're woke, you know that men are the problem.
That's why it's so jarring to read Paul's instructions to the Corinthians.
Be watchful, stand firm in the faith, act like men, be strong. Let all that you do be done in love. (1 Corinthians 16:13-14)
Most of that, I suppose is ... tolerable. But right there in the middle is a specific command to "act like men." Clearly Paul didn't get the memo.
In the Greek it is a single word, ἀνδρίζομαι -- andrizomai. It occurs exactly once in the Bible -- here. If you have any hint of Greek knowledge, you would see immediately the root word, andro, in there. We even use that prefix in our language. "Androgynous" references appearing both male ("andro") and female ("gyn"). We call them "androids" because they look like humans. An androcracy is a government ruled by men. Well, this is the Greek verb form for "man." We have our own version: "Man up." Be strong, be courageous, don't be weak.
Oh, but those are things that the APA are quite sure are toxic. Those are things to avoid. Maybe Paul didn't get the memo, but surely God who was providing the inspiration for this should have known. And they (God and Paul) have the audacity to link "act like a man" and "Let all that you do be done in love" when we know that masculinity is the exact opposite of love.
So we have a dilemma. Modern science (assuming you accept psychology and cultural opinion as science) says that masculinity is toxic. God, speaking through Paul, commands Christians to "man up." Which will it be? Ignore the culture as mistaken or assign blame to God as misguided? You'll have to answer that one for yourself.