Facts don’t always line up to tell the truth – especially in today’s world of news, where facts are often used to lead the reader or viewer to believe a complete lie.
This is what happened last week when USA Today ran a front page story headlined, “Genital mutilation victims break their silence: ‘This is demonic.'”
Under the headline was a picture of an elderly woman with a bolded statement, saying, “A. Renee Bergstrom, 72, said a fundamentalist Christian doctor mutilated her genitals in 1947 to prevent her from masturbating.”
And there was her picture, on the front page under the headline, with the name Christian in bold.
We’re grateful the USA Today took on this gruesome issue – an issue that exists primarily in extreme sects of the Islamic religion. But at first glance, you wouldn’t know that crucial fact because the front cover only highlighted the word Christian.
The truth is, neither the Bible nor any Christian doctrine or denomination condones female genital mutilation. As a matter of fact, the Christian faith not only elevates and celebrates women, it cherishes the pleasure of sexual intimacy, as you’ll see in the scripture below.
But USA Today didn’t report those facts. It simply took one fact – one that is so extreme and opposed to the Christian faith – and positioned it on the front page, reporting in such a way as to lead the reader to believe fundamental Christian belief condones this practice.
By the time you’re done reading the story, religion simply looks foolish, especially Christianity.
We don’t doubt it’s a fact some wacked professing Christian doctor mutilated a woman 70 years ago. But to take that fact and create a narrative that this is somehow a Christian belief is to lead the reader to believe a complete lie. Despite overwhelming evidence female genital mutilation is primarily found in extreme sects of the Islamic faith and is pervasive predominantly in the Middle East, USA Today ignored these facts and ran with one simple fact that pushed its narrative – one that seeks to discredit religion, especially Christianity.
The word “Islam” was not even mentioned once on the cover, but the word “Christian” was. Interesting.
To connect Christianity to female genital mutilation is absurd. And to not have one pastor or reputable Christian teacher comment as to what our faith actually says about this topic was to simply take a fact and tell a lie.
So for those who read the article and wonder if the Christian faith truly teaches sex for women is not to be enjoyed, listen to how God’s word speaks about the subject:
“How beautiful you are and how pleasing, my love, with your delights! Your stature is like that of the palm, and your breasts like clusters of fruit. I said, ‘I will climb the palm tree; I will take hold of its fruit.’ May your breasts be like clusters of grapes on the vine, the fragrance of your breath like apples, and your mouth like the best wine. May the wine go straight to my beloved, flowing gently over your lips and teeth. I belong to my beloved, and his desire is for me. Come, my beloved, let us go to the countryside, let us spend the night in the villages. Let us go early to the vineyards to see if the vines have budded, if their blossoms have opened, and if the pomegranates are in bloom – there I will give you my love” (Song of Songs 7:6-12).
God gave us sexual intimacy, and He created it to be enjoyed – just like Solomon and his wife in the scripture above. To cut a woman’s genitalia would be to alter God’s amazing design in a woman’s life. So regardless of how the USA Today reports the facts, the truth is the truth.
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