Wednesday, February 1, 2012


Over on Facebook, I've gotten at least one correspondent who's confused by my Christopher West posts.

I responded thus:

Here's why West is dangerous. We must certainly suffer evil in our union with Christ, this evil being the bad things that happen to us and our concupiscience, which the sacraments do not remove. We can never in this life be without the evil around us and the evil within us, and in that sense we must "offer it up" or "suffer" it.

But West is using this truth to go one step further. He's saying it is Puritanical to avoid near occasions of sin, that it is instead a mark of an illuminated Christian to embrace occasions of sin and to seek the good in them.

His argument is Jungian. It is really nothing but "there's good at the heart of everything bad". True enough. And there's even a kind of "good" in pornography, so far as sex itself is good. Even Satan still retains things that are "good" - his intelligence, his will. These he uses for evil, but they are in themselves good.

West is paving the way for what the wrong kind of people could use as a kind of "grooming behavior". He is trying to dull our sensibilities by speaking theological half-truths that are used to rationalize sin.

Here's a test for you. Use West's argument with your wife if you're married. Tell her, according to West, that looking at another woman naked is a good thing because you're looking at her through the eyes of a redeemed Christian and you're seeking the good that lies at the heart of lust. Tell her you're going to the strip club for just this high minded theological reason.

See if she buys it

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