Writer Liz Lenz recently reflected on the impact of this book, published 20 years ago, in the Purity culture taught me that I ought to be passed down from father to husband, more an inheritance than a human.
These messages, in the form of books like Every man was once a boy.
And every little boy has dreams, big dreams, dreams of being the hero, of beating the bad guys, of doing daring feats and rescuing the damsel in distress. invites men to recover their masculine heart, defined in the image of a passionate God.
Much of American Christian culture is still built up around these ideas articulated by Eldredge, Harris, Driscoll, Piper, and innumerable other white males.
Modern patriarchy is entrenched in cultural and religious messages that privilege men as predestined to lead, provide, and protect, and maintains hyper-masculinity as the highest ideal.
Women and girls are designed to be the “damsel in distress,” invited to delight in the strength and wildness of men while awaiting their masculine savior.
sends a similar message, establishing a strict ethic of premarital abstinence that has resulted in today’s “purity culture” crisis.
John Piper, meanwhile, is still a widely influential fundamentalist theologian with a well-traveled website and nearly one million Twitter followers.
Piper preaches an ethic of complementarianism that is more nuanced and decidedly less bombastic than Driscoll’s, but equally harmful.
Patriarchy has dominated Christian history for — well, all of Christian history.