Perspective on purity

White wedding shoes with the words Pure and Precious written on the inside

Depending on who you talk to, “purity” is either a wonderful word to describe a high concept, or a toxic word used to oppress people (most often women).

For myself, I believe that purity is a good thing, but that ‘purity culture’ is a form of gender based violence. My ideas are summarised in the purity section (statements #81-90) in my 95 statements on hope, sexuality and consent.

For the theologians and biblical scholars out there, I also think the debates on the ‘New Perspective on Paul’ have massive implications for how we understand purity. For that reason, my discussion of purity heavily overlaps with the theology covenantal belonging, salvation and hope. You see, I think purity, properly understood, is about belonging.

I call this a ‘new perspective on purity’.

Posts about a new perspective on purity

Sunlight posts:

A brain-dump about purity: this time, I think I really might change the world (Sep 2017)

How the word ‘proxy’ helps me talk about equality (Nov 2018)

Why purity-as-separation undermines the church’s covenant calling (Oct 2017)

Wedding shoes of different colours but similar ribbons and style

Firelight posts:

Rethinking virginity: yes, it is about purity, but it’s not like a silk scarf (Jul 2017)

What exactly is a pledge? Exploring the types of commitment seen in the Bible (with the aim of later looking at purity pledges) (Mar 2018)

Silver heart bracelet worn by bride. Text: Purity pledges and the Bible, what exactly is a pledge or vow or covenant?

Priestesses in the church? Why CS Lewis’ argument was right, but his conclusion wrong (Mar 2018)

Priestesses In the Church essay title by CS Lewis

Moonlight posts:

Let’s talk about that Deuteronomy 22 law where a girl marries her rapist. Because it’s not about marriage or sex. (Nov 2018)

Juliet from 1996 20th Century Fox adaptation of Romeo & Juliet, with quote "Proud can I never be of what I hate" and text "Let's talk about that Old Testament law where a girl marries her rapist"