Passion and Purity ★★★★★

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Title: Passion and Purity
Series: ———-
Author: Elisabeth Elliot
Rating: 5 of 5 Stars
Genre: Counsel
Pages: 192
Words: 40K


From Wikipedia

Published in 1984 and written by Elisabeth Elliot, is an evangelical Protestant book, part manifesto and part autobiography, on the subject of romantic relationships. The book recounts Elliot’s friendship and romance with missionary Jim Elliot, beginning in the 1940s and ending with his death in 1956. Elliot uses anecdotes from her relationship with Jim to expound on her views concerning “pure, Christian relationships” and the practice of “waiting on God” for romantic timing and direction.

The late Ruth Bell Graham, wife of popular evangelist Billy Graham, wrote the preface.

My Thoughts:

I read this for the first time back in 2000 when I was single and desperately trying to not be single. That was a very different time in my life from now and I read this now to see how things had changed more than because I thought I needed to read this book.

I will say, besides being saved by Jesus Christ, getting married was the best thing that ever happened to me. Books like this helped me stay the course during those tumultuous hormone years when all I wanted was to give way to my baser desires.

So this time around, it was like looking back down a mountain side. This book is written to single people who are dealing with keeping their purity and walk with God while navigating the world of courting/dating. It was a fantastic reminder that I have not always been where I currently am. That in turn gave me hope because it means that I am not always going to be where I currently am either. God has plans for each stage of our lives.

It has spurred me on to go look at some marriage counsel books by Dr. James Dobson to see what advice is given to married couples. While we’re doing just fine, heading off things before they happen is the best way to keep things going just fine.


43 thoughts on “Passion and Purity ★★★★★

          1. Hahahaa. That is ONE interpretation. Obviously, not the interpretation I think is correct.
            My interpretation is that we’re just mature men who know what is best for us. Which includes ironing with our minds!

            Liked by 1 person

                1. Your struggles will be useless against my weaponry. The Lasso of Prym Roll, The Bracelets of Coverclips, The Amulet of The Ham (known in short as the Hamulet) and the Lansinarian Morphing Disk of Tefal, to name but a few. I am impregnable. (And also Unassailable in case I got that first one wrong. Either way I can’t get pregnant)

                  Liked by 1 person

                  1. Dang, that’s a lot of stuff to overcome. I think I’ll have to assemble our crack team of Ironing Masters pronto. Or else you’re going to take over the world before we know it.

                    Sigh, an Ironing Masters work is never done…

                    Liked by 1 person

  1. I really appreciated this message that you have intertwined with this review. I have an tendency to be dark, mostly in an entertainment and theoretical sense, even though I have been brought up Christian and still am, I consider myself more of a spiritual person than religious, but I digress. As I have gotten older I have learned to separate myself from my darker tendencies and learn to trust in God and I hold true to that, even though at times I fall way short, then I will say a prayer and ask God to help me.

    Liked by 1 person

    1. I don’t mean to be rude with this question, but what is the difference between someone who is religious and spiritual? And how does that play out with Christianity?

      I hear you about having darker tendencies though. It’s partly why I’ve started to read more non-fiction. Just a little way to get something better into my life 🙂


      1. It’s not rude at all and I don’t mind a bit of pry. I think this is an excellent topic and regarding your last paragraph in your comment, balance is a beautiful thing, right?

        Now, in regards to your first question being about the difference in spirituality and religion:

        A major qualm of mine with Christianity as it is presented by a typical, let’s say a church or even small group is the disregard for inner development as it relates to our direct connection with God and the things he has instilled into us for whatever reason. A good example is our energy centers, also known as chakras. You will never hear this brought up by a pastor and possibly there is good reason for this, probably because the bible doesn’t mention it. However, as Christians we need to be skeptical with this kind of info, because we can invite unwanted “things”, but through prayer and meditation, God can give us the proper way to go, if we look for his answer. I believe that the chakras can also talk to us, and if we are listening they can give us warning signs about our body and health.

        I think I answered both questions? 😁

        Furthermore, maybe it is good that spirituality is somewhat separate from religion, while I do think both are important, I honestly didn’t realize this until you commented this question.

        Liked by 1 person

  2. I’ve been single for so long now that I’ve pretty much given up hope of ever finding the married life. This is not me being bitter, but just me facing reality. Love and me aren’t meant to be, despite being a romantic at heart. Nice post though, for what sounds like a great book😊

    Liked by 2 people

      1. I’m never bitter. Life is too short to be bitter you know? 😊 Do I sometimes become sad because of it? Sure. But at a certain point you have come to accept that it’s not to be, and move on. There luckily is still enough in life to enjoy, and I’m always an optimist so there’s that. Besides, I can always turn to ironing, so there’s that 😂

        Liked by 1 person

    1. If I were not the Goddess of Ironing and an Ancient One, I would hop over to your place and bind you to my ironing board with hugs and kisses. Unfortunately I am spoken for by the God of Meatballs and he doesn’t like to share. 🤣

      Liked by 3 people

  3. I, too, read this in college and I really liked it. It has a lot of wisdom in it. However, if I recall correctly, it also seems to assume that the reader is operating within a world of social norms relating to propriety and courtship that simply does not exist any more. This can make it really really difficult for a Christian young person to find … even a path to finding a mate. Since Passion and Purity, we’ve had I Kissed Dating Goodbye, followed by a well-meant “courtship” movement with disastrous results, and now the book Courtship in Crisis.

    There are no ready-made social paths to becoming a couple anymore. It seems that your options are either Bacchanalia, or a rushed, awkward, overly scripted courtship followed by a doomed marriage to someone you barely know. Those who don’t like those options, have to bake their own social norms from scratch. Which is hard. I mean, expect for ironing masters, who could probably do it with one hand tied behind their back.

    As for marriage books, I recommend His Needs, Her Needs and Love and Respect. We might also need more specialized books from time to time, for example if your loved one is suffering with depression or another mental illness. But the two I mentioned are really good basic guides. Douglas Wilson has also written some good stuff about this, though like Elliot he often seems to assume a background level of community support, and a level of maturity on the part of both spouses, that are by no means guaranteed.

    Liked by 1 person

    1. When I read initially read this, I didn’t take as some sort of guide book for courting. I took it for the principles she talked about and had to figure out how to apply them to myself.

      I came from a background where courting was a thing, so none of it was strange to me. What was strange was figuring out what would work for Mrs B and me, as she’d never heard of courting and we had to do the long distance relationship thing. We only saw each other once every 6-7 months and so our situation was “unique”. But every couple has to figure out how to deal with things. What’s important is that they have Christian principles guiding their decisions.

      Thanks for the rec. Mrs B definitely has some special needs. She hasn’t robbed even ONE bank with me yet and there are times I wonder if our marriage can survive that. I’m not sure Wilson would work for us. As you say, it takes some maturity and as I’ve exhibited here and elsewhere, sometimes that’s lacking 😀 😀 😀

      Liked by 1 person

      1. It’s possible that what I got out of Passion & Purity was influenced by the rigid, idealistic manner in which I read everything in those days.

        When my husband and I met and quickly started dating, we had both been out of the house for a few years and he was in his 30s. We had both read Douglas Wilson and wanted to try the courtship model, but it felt sort of artificial. I wrote to my dad, “Is it OK if I date this guy?” and he wrote back, “Well, I assume you like him?” 😀 On the other hand, it did lead to us making a priority of meeting each other’s extended families, which we probably would have done anyway.

        The lady has never helped you rob a bank? Clearly, she has no sense of humor.

        Liked by 1 person

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