If you’re a man and you’ve attended an evangelical church, you’ve probably been uncomfortable with some of the customs, the music, the forms of worship, and even the style of the sermon. There’s something off about so much of it. My life, as much as I’m able, is oriented around God, and yet I struggle to get to church; it’s always a battle. The snide response is to “man up and go”, but if I’m honest, few churches seem open to masculinity.

There’s a reason for that, I think, and one that takes another swing at the already weak trunk of egalitarian thinking. The egalitarian has no answer for why a church might be inconsistent with masculinity because the egalitarian doesn’t really see differences in the sexes as anything meaningful. It’s God’s arbitrary will that makes men and women different, not anything in the nature of men and women.

However, for everyone not caught up in that stupid ideology, it’s obvious that just like near everything else in the world, there are gendered differences in piety and religion. Men are inclined toward things that women are not, and vice versa.

The modern evangelical church, in it’s overwhelmingly feminine bent – even trending into feminism – is so far gone that it conflates feminine piety with piety itself. Put another way, the way a woman worships is normative. The way a man worships is defective. Just as with education the male must be fixed to be a female.

This is why we often here the claim that “women are more spiritual than men” and so many women want to know what to do when they are “more spiritual” than their husbands. They probably aren’t more spiritual than their husbands, and women are as equally prone to sin as men, but if femininity starts to look like spirituality to you, these become natural products.

There may be many church leaders who simply don’t know how naturally repulsive the environment they are building is to men. This revulsion is natural and given by God, and being offended by it is yet another indication that one has confused the spiritual for the feminine. Much as revulsion toward perverse sexual acts is also natural and God-given, and we should encourage it, because it actually makes sinning more difficult.

Although I’ve never attended a strongly liturgical church, I suspect liturgy may provide some alternative to this overly feminine model. Churches without liturgy certainly wouldn’t go wrong if they spent less time trying to cause an overtly emotional reaction and focused more on ritual.