This is my first ever negative book review.
I usually don’t waste my time telling you about books that I dislike. I’d rather emphasize the positive and move on to tell you about titles that I feel are edifying and helpful.
But, after Tim Challais review yesterday of Created To Be His Helpmeet by Debi Pearl and a bunch of banter in favor or against this book, I decided to chime in and tell you why I cannot recommend these books.
Although I have several reasons, ranging from poor theology to manipulation tactics that are shameful and scandalous, I will give you just one reason that you should not heed the marriage advice of the Pearls:
Their writing does not properly reflect the character of Christ.
They are not displaying the visible, singular fruit of the Spirit of God in their writing: love, joy, meekness, gentleness, etc.
Think about that for a moment.
This is a marriage book that claims to be Christian–the authors are speaking on behalf of Christ, but are sorely misrepresenting His character.
Although there might be some truth to what Debi writes, who wants to have to sift through all of the insults and harshness to find it, especially when you have known the goodness and gentleness of the Lord?
You need only read one verse in scripture to see how Christ interacted with those seeking truth:
Luke 4:22 “And all spoke well of him and marveled at the gracious words that were coming from his mouth. And they said, “Is not this Joseph’s son?”
And Christ has expectations for his follower’s speech:
Ephesians 4: 29 “Let no corrupting talk come out of your mouths, but only such as is good for building up, as fits the occasion, that it may give grace to those who hear.”
Ephesians 4:15 “Speaking the truth in love.”
Colossians 4:6 “ Let your conversation be always full of grace, seasoned with salt, so that you may know how to answer everyone.”
1 Peter 3:15 “ but in your hearts honor Christ the Lord as holy, always being prepared to make a defense to anyone who asks you for a reason for the hope that is in you; yet do it with gentleness and respect,”
We are to properly represent the God whose name we are called by. We are His ambassadors, which is an honor. We dare not misrepresent Him or bring Him shame by our own foolish choices.
Here’s a quick example from scripture of how Paul treated the people under his care:
(note: He never uses the words “Dumb Clucks” to describe the people he loves.)
1 Thes. 2:6-8, 10-12:
6. ”Nor did we seek glory from men, either from you or from others, even though as apostles of Christ we might have asserted our authority.
7 But we proved to be gentle among you, as a nursing mother tenderly cares for her own children.
8 Having so fond an affection for you, we were well-pleased to impart to you not only the gospel of God but also our own lives, because you had become very dear to us.
10 You are witnesses, and so is God, how devoutly and uprightly and blamelessly we behaved toward you believers;
11 just as you know how we were exhorting and encouraging and imploring each one of you as a father would his own children,
12 so that you would walk in a manner worthy of the God who calls you into His own kingdom and glory.”
Paul uses familial terms: nursing mother and caring father.
When a younger sister in Christ comes to you for help, name calling, harshness, sarcasm, cutting remarks and a general lack of gentleness is not okay.
Harsh words do not flow out of a grace-filled heart.
Biblical love for a younger sister in Christ needs to be displayed in the Biblical way…the 1 Cor. 13 way: Love is patient, kind, not self-seeking, never rude.
Meekness is the polar opposite of harshness and a meek heart does not gush forth with crude, offensive, demeaning talk. (even if they think that in the end it is for their own good. The end does not justify the means.)
Even in rebuke, the goal is to heal and eventually edify–not cut down or destroy with a verbal tongue lashing.
And when you are teaching a younger sister, rebuke is rarely needed. Usually, instruction and discipleship are needed.
If you are following God, then you must also follow His prescribed methods.
“Truth without love is brutality.” (Warren Wiersbe)
I fear that Ms. Pearl is training a whole generation of women how to mistreat their Titus two mentee someday. People learn by example, even bad examples. Will they in turn name call, cut down and put into place their younger sisters in Christ, thereby harming the body, when in fact, Titus 2 mentoring is meant to edify and build up believers?
Read Tim’s second half of his book review: here
(See my Titus 2 Page for books on marriage that I DO recommend! )