Tuesday, September 09, 2008

V-DAY MOVED

Hello friends and family. Well we have moved V-day to September 19th because of some concerns in our family situation. At first I wanted the "no scalpel" one which was only available in October; but we decided it would be better to bear it out.

So, this is the time for the "last chances" as it were to give any counsel. I think the burden of proof is on those who would assert that birth control is sin because the Bible does not condemn it. I am open to any arguments any brothers or sisters on the other side have.

On all sides we would appreciate prayer.

Thank you brothers and sisters.

19 comments:

Anonymous said...

Josh,
I will be praying for your surgery to go well. I know guys who have had vasectomies and they said they would not do the reversal because of the pain they went through with the original surgery. I will be praying for a speedy recovery.

In Christ,
Dax

Anonymous said...

Josh-

You probably won't find any condemnation for practicing birth control in the Bible because it simply wasn't an issue in the ancient world. Children were needed and welcomed into the ancient world due to the economic structure of society. This is a modern issue which comes to us as a result of the Industrial Revolution. As I see it, arguments against birth control are arguments against the Industrialized world in which we live. Granted, I am not saying I agree with our Industrialized society, I don't. We simply don't need to have 15 kids in a lifetime, becuase we no longer work on the family farm, which is ashame.


B.J.

Josh Brisby said...

Thank you brothers B.J. and Dax. I've heard different stories about brothers who have had the big V done. I figure that Angela went through so much pain and sickness with our five pregnancies; it's kind of my way of saying "thank you" to her. But of course it won't be fun. :0)

But we are looking forward to finally being freed up to raise the five beautiful covenant children the Lord has granted us.

Josh Brisby said...

Brother B.J.,

I completely agree with you that arguments against birth control seem to come down to arguments against modern technology. We can apply these arguments (which really boil down to mere assertions) that it isn't "trusting God" to many things. I have heard of people who will not take aspirin or Tylenol because they believe they are not "trusting God" when it comes to their headache. Of course one must ask how far we take this and how far across the board we apply this kind of thinking.

I am also not convinced with Rome's argument from natural law. Should I not shave my beard either because it's not "natural"? (Ironically Rome still allows for "natural family planning"--LOL!)

When I look back at my previous posts on birth control when I was against it, I noticed that every "argument" of mine was not really an "argument" at all. They were all what Manata calls "bare naked assertions."

Finally, I am concerned that much "letter of the law" type thinking inevitably leads to a failure to recognize the reality of the world we live in. Sometimes it's as if we Christians live in our own little bubble. "Christian education" and "Christian bumper stickers" and "Christian plumbers" and "Christian street paving" (to quote Scott Clark). "Take back the culture for Jesus!"

Anyhoo, I know I went off on a huge tangent--but in my experience all of this is very much related.

Bye-bye Kuyperianism. Hello Two Kingdoms.

Anonymous said...

Josh-

My "only" concern about your V-Day is possible circumstances in which you might regret having had it done. Are you certian that there is no case in which you would want to have another child? I would hate to read a blog post in the future on how you have made a grave error, and are now living with some guilt about having this operation. I know some who do.

Just a thought......

B.J.

Anonymous said...

Josh-

"Take back the culture for Jesus!"

Is this an additional joke or is it the mantra for the 2 kingdom view?

I only ask because it comes after you cite Clark.

Josh Brisby said...

B.J.,

"Take back the culture for Jesus" was a jab at Kuyperianism. :0) Two kingdoms doesn't think that way.

In all honesty, we would indeed like more children, but b/c of the difficulties on Angela during pregnancy, and even the danger it puts our children in, and the impossibility of being able to homeschool while pregnant, we just don't think it's a possibility. So, for us, it comes down to either using barrier methods for some 10+ years, or calling it quits now. And even in ten years, we will still be homeschooling.

Any thoughts you have on this are much appreciated. V-day is a week from today, and I am open to changing my mind. Thank you brother.

Anonymous said...

Well, to be frank, I was not referring to you and Ang having anymore kids. If you catch my drift....


B.J.

Anonymous said...

Actually Josh,
I am referring to tragedy striking your household in some fashion. I know it is akward to speak about things so horrifing as possibly losing a spouse or children, but I know of people that will not end their life with the same one they started it with, or their children.

This would be the only thing left to consider if I were as close to the "chop-shop" as you :0

Josh Brisby said...

Brother B.J.,

If I catch your "drift" correctly, are you and Laura possibly done? After only one kid? Well, it's not for me to say; just that one seems like a real small number, but every family is different I suppose.

Thanks for your thoughts. I have also thought about "what if I lose my family in some accident or something?". However, I also know that we can't live our lives on "what-ifs" either. And of course if Angela died I would probably remarry, and I would have to tell the girl I marry that I can't provide her with children of her own.

We have thought about adoption as well.

If you have any more thoughts, I would most certainly appreciate them. Thanks for your counsel already given.

Josh Brisby said...

B.J.,

Wait a sec--I get it now. You were referring to the possibility of a tragedy or accident, which you elaborated above. Got it.

Dude, sometimes it's so hard to communicate in a combox. Hehehe.

Randy said...

I truly wish you and your family still lived here. If you did, I have three young ladies who would love to have the opportunity to learn firsthand the care of a household and multiple young children under the mentorship of the childrens' mother. Are there any young ladies in your church community or elsewhere near you who would welcome such an opportunity if Angela became pregnant again? Someone who could learn those motherly and wifely arts in an "apprenticeship" would be a huge assett to her future husband and children, as well as a huge blessing to you and your family. I just want you to understand that there are alternatives you may not yet comprehend. Love you all.

Anonymous said...

Josh,
Have you considered this:
http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Calendar-based_methods

or is this too risky? I'm curious what your thoughts are on this. I know this is a big decision. I know you haven't taken it lightly, but you were so hard core against any type of birth control before. I'd like to know what changed your opinion(that was so strong). I can't help but think it has something to do with you trading in your optimism(Kuyperianism) for pessimism(two kingdoms). :)

Dax

Anonymous said...

Josh,
For the record that last sentence was a joke. I understand your concern for Angela's health. I'm just wondering what changed your view on these matters.

Thanks,
Dax

Anonymous said...

Dax-

Don't sweat it! That 2 kingdom thing is jusy one of those California things. Kinda like hippies and the Jesus Movement of teh 60's and 70's. Its just a phase, it will pass. Once Josh and surfer dude buddies realize they have nothing to contribute to society, they will come out of their trance-like state.

Hang 10 Dude!

B.J.

P.S. Our own Senior Minister is one of these surfer theologians and guess where he is from?;)

Josh Brisby said...

Randy,

Thank you for your thoughts. I am not sure we would wish the difficulty of a live-in nanny; I think it would be a lot to throw that in. I do thank you for your concern though brother.

Dax and B.J.,

Yes, I have gone from external obedience (Kuyperianism) to internal, free, and unburdened love (two kingdoms). :0D I have gone from the cultural church (Kuyperianism) to the church of the eye of faith (two kingdoms). I have gone from the church of America (Kuyperianism) to the church of Christ in Word and Sacrament (two kingdoms).

Touche. :0D

Josh Brisby said...

Dax,

I'll give a quick overview (although probably not all that quick) as to what changed our mind on birth control.

(1) All our "arguments" in past posts on this were not arguments. They were bare naked assertions.

(2) The argument of "the burden of proof rests on those who would say birth control is a Christian liberty, because all the way till 1930 the church in all its branches agreed it was sin" was not convincing to me. Even if I acknowledge that the burden of proof is on those who would assert that birth control is permissible, there were several things that even the Reformers believed that we find unbelievable now. Do you know that Luther and Calvin both believed in the perpetual virginity of Mary? The influence of Romanism on them was difficult to get out of.

(3) I am not convinced that the sin of Onan was birth control. He was supposed to provide an heir for his dead brother. He had the option of saying he didn't want to, although he would have been spat upon according to Levite custom. But death was not the punishment. His sin went further. He acted like he had every intention of fulfilling his role here, lied about it, and used his brother's wife for sexual gratification. Furthermore, the Levites were priests who were to stand before God for the sins of the people, so they always needed an heir. In messing with this, Onan was inadvertently messing with the Great High Priest Who would arrive later.

(4) I have not heard *any* good arguments against birth control; just assertions. "It's playing God" some say. Well then so is taking a Tylenol, driving a car, using electricity, etc. The Reformers would say "it kills a soul that isn't there yet." To which I respond, "you can't kill something unless it is conceived first."

(5) I don't buy Rome's argument from natural law, as mentioned above. "It's not natural." So I shouldn't shave b/c it's not natural? I shouldn't clip my nails? I shouldn't fast? How far do we take this?

(6) I need someone to prove to me clearly and unequivocally, either through Scripture or through logical arguments, that birth control is sin. I haven't seen it done yet. Again, most are just assertions. Rarely are arguments made. But when arguments are actually made, they are only surface arguments which are easily refuted. And again, I find it ironic that even Rome now allows for "natural family planning." This seems to indicate that they know there is wisdom here.

(7) No, we aren't comfortable with calendar methods. Too risky for us.

(8) This is for Angela and the children we already have. This is out of love for them.

Thank you guys for your thoughts. Feel free to bring up any more questions or concerns brothers.

Josh Brisby said...

Oh yeah, I almost forgot another one: I traded in the complexity of Kuyperianism for the simplicity of two kingdoms. :0D

Anonymous said...

Oh yeah, I almost forgot another one: I traded in the complexity of Kuyperianism for the simplicity of two kingdoms. :0D

Bare naked assertions, eh?


B.J.