This article is the second in a two-part series featuring remarks at the National Religious Broadcasters 2024 Convention in Nashville, Tennessee. To read part one, click here.


This year’s annual NRB Conference included remarks from prominent speakers, focusing particularly on the needs of families in today’s increasingly hostile culture.

The panel, “Faith, Fatherhood, & Masculinity” was moderated by Fox News chief religion correspondent Lauren Green. It featured remarks from Ryan Bomberger, co-founder and chief creative officer at The Radiance Foundation; Mary Eberstadt, author of Adam and Eve after the Pill, Revisited; Nancy Pearcey, professor and scholar in residence at Houston Christian University; and Sean Teis, president of Life Factors Fatherless Ministries.

A Cultural Diagnosis

In her remarks, Mary Eberstadt quoted the greater writer and Soviet dissident Aleksander Solzhenitsyn who said that the 20th century could be summarized in four words: “Men have forgotten God.”

“I think the 21st century could be summarized in six words: ‘Men are at war with God,’” Eberstadt contended. “Men and women are at war with God over the first question in history, which is, ‘Who gets to direct creation?’”

The most contentions social issues today – abortion, euthanasia and transgenderism – stem from our answer to that question, Eberstadt said. In her book Adam and Eve after the Pill, she traced these crises back to one major historical event – the Sexual Revolution. “It loosened the bonds of family, the bonds of community, patriotism and love of country,” she shared. As a result, Eberstadt shared, we have three “crises of paternity,” including:

  • The crisis involving our Supernatural Father, and our relationship to Him.
  • The crisis involving our earthly fathers.
  • The crisis involving patriotism, our love of country.

“If we understand that these three crises are interrelated, we’ll have taken one step towards starting to address them,” she added.

The Modern War on Men

In her prophetic remarks, Professor Pearcey pointed out that our culture disdains masculinity and fatherhood.

“Certainly, one of the tragedies of our day is the way fathers are ridiculed and mocked in the media today,” Professor Pearcey said. She pointed out just a few examples:

  • The Huffington Post featured a blog titled, “Fathers are not needed.”
  • A piece in The Atlantic said, “The bad news for dad: There is nothing objectively essential about his contribution.”
  • An article in The New York Times opined, “One of the most frustrating problems in evolutionary biology is the male, specifically, why doesn’t he just go away?”

The Fatherhood of Good Men

But, Pearcey said, modern research and data disprove these faulty and malevolent ideas. She adapted her remarks from her new book, The Toxic War on Masculinity: How Christianity Reconciles the Sexes.

First, Pearcey cited anthropologist David Gilmore, author of the book Manhood in the Making, who conducted the first-ever cross-cultural study on masculinity and discovered a “common code for masculinity that is universal.” Gilmore found that all cultures affirm that good men do three things: provide, protect and procreate.

Second, Pearcey noted that our culture often views Christian men as “Exhibit A” for “toxic masculinity.” But to the contrary, Pearcey said, research shows that “Christian men who are authentically committed, and attend church regularly, are actually the most loving and engaged husbands and fathers.” She said that for these Christian men,

  • Their wives report the highest levels of happiness.
  • They spend more time with their children (3.5 hours more per week than secular men).
  • They have the lowest rate of divorce (35% lower than secular men).
  • They have the lowest rate of domestic abuse and violence of any major group in America.

Third, Pearcey cited Brad Wilcox, author of Get Married: Why Americans Must Defy the Elites, Forge Strong Families, and Save Civilization, who found that “the happiest of all wives in America are religious conservatives. Seventy-three percent of women who hold conservative gender values, and attend church regularly with their husbands, have high-quality marriages.”

Lastly, Pearcey noted that contrary to popular claims, fatherhood is not a “social invention.”

“Psychologists have discovered what they call, ‘The dad brain,’” Pearcey said. “There is a nest of neurons that are activated when a man becomes a father. His hormones change too.”

“God has literally given men a biochemical boost to bond with their children,” Pearcey added. “So, the facts are in, men are wired for fatherhood. It’s not a cultural invention. God has designed the neurochemistry of men to be engaged and loving fathers.”

The Fruitfulness of Good Men

Ryan Bomberger shared with the audience that good men can changes lives – because a good man changed his life. He created the following video as a tribute to his birth mom who chose to give him life.

“The man who taught me the fatherhood of God was my dad,” Bomberger said. “My biological father was a rapist. But the only dad I ever knew was a man who didn’t fixate on how I came to be but loved me into who I was meant to be.”

“I am a father of four. Two of my kids were adopted. Today, I have the father heart of God because of the dad who gave me so much.”

You can purchase a copy of Nancy Pearcey’s new book The Toxic War on Masculinity.

To speak with a family help specialist or request resources, please call us at 1-800-A-FAMILY (232-6459).

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