NOTE: Recently Joseph Bayly did some critique of the “Red Pill” and “MGTOW” (Men Going Their Own Way) movements here on Warhorn. A few years ago, a Trinity Reformed Church brother, Scott Tibbs, wrote a couple helpful pieces (here and here) on these movements, also, and I asked his permission to share them with you. He was kind to give his permission.
MGTOW and God’s sexual order
July 25, 2019
One of the reactions to feminism is the so-called “manosphere,” which includes the Men Going Their Own Way (MGTOW) movement. I am not going to mince words here: MGTOW is an abandonment of God’s natural sexual order. Most of the men in the MGTOW movement do not have the gift of celibacy, and the Apostle Paul has a warning in his first epistle to the church at Corinth:
I say therefore to the unmarried and widows, it is good for them if they abide even as I. But if they cannot contain, let them marry: for it is better to marry than to burn. (1 Corinthians 7:8-9)
Some translations have this as “burn with passion,” but it could very well mean a much worse kind of burning – meaning eternal Hell Fire. God created marriage as the only legitimate outlet for sex, which He created as a good thing for His creation. In fact, when God created mankind, He gave the commandment to “be fruitful and multiply,” which obviously requires sexual intercourse. The Apostle Paul quotes Genesis in his letter to the church at Ephesus:
For this cause shall a man leave his father and mother, and shall be joined unto his wife, and they two shall be one flesh. (Ephesians 5:31)
Yes, marriage involves risk. Asking a woman out is carries the risk of rejection and embarrassment, and that risk is heightened when a man pursues marriage. Even once married, there is a risk the marriage could break apart due to sin by one or both partners. A man could lose not only his marriage, but his home and children even if he is the innocent party. Many men have correctly pointed out that child custody and divorce proceedings are often biased against men, so they want to avoid the risk entirely by “going their own way.”
Abandoning marriage because of the negative consequences of feminism is clearly not what God has intended for most men. Yes, I know that the gift of celibacy exists, but that is rare. So while there are certainly bad women who have been poisoned by feminism (especially “third wave” feminism), the answer to that problem is to seek a good woman, not avoid women and marriage entirely. All of life is risk, and God knows it. Avoiding marriage shows a lack of faith in God, that He will protect and reward your obedience to His will.
Revisiting the MGTOW movement
August 9, 2019
Let’s be brutally honest: While the “Men Going Their Own Way” (MGTOW) movement is wrong in its abandonment of romantic connections with women, MGTOW and the broader “manosphere” does make some reasonable points. The family court system is biased against men in terms of child custody. There are plenty of men who have been “divorce-raped” by their ex-wives – losing their children, their home, and so forth. From a human standpoint, avoiding the risk that comes with marriage is understandable.
With that said, we should not pretend that this risk is a one-sided proposition. There are women who have been violently abused and cheated on, and have had their children taken away and turned against them when they finally leave an abusive husband. Just as many men have been surprised to be victimized by a vengeful ex-wife, many women have been victimized by bad men too. There is as much reason for a WGTOW movement as for a MGTOW movement.
All of life involves risk. If you take one job, you risk being treated badly and unjustly terminated when you could have done better at a different job. If you buy one car, you might get a clunker and would have been far better off with another one. We could list an infinite number of examples, where someone went into a situation expecting good things only to have everything go off the rails. Men and women both make themselves vulnerable to each other when they walk down the aisle. So we should just give up, right?
No. That is not God’s plan. Sliding into bitterness and despair is not the right way to address the problems that feminists have created for men – or the pain that bad men have caused women. Instead, we have to step out in faith and trust God. Yes, much of this does involve proper vetting on our part, and listening to wise counsel from brothers and sisters in the faith. Just as there are bad marriages that end in tragedy, there are plenty of good marriages. Do not abandon a good thing that was established by God in the Garden of Eden before the Fall just because Satan has done his best to destroy it.