I love the Lord. I’ve gave my life to him 22 years ago, and have been spreading His word since I was 16 – as a small group leader in an organization for Christian teens, as a Sunday School teacher, a Good News Club teacher, an apologetics blogger, wherever.
I always believed wives should submit to their husbands, in a way husbands don’t have to. That is the first idea a Bible student probably get on a plain reading of any current translation. It was no big issue for me. I did think women have to be pickier when choosing husbands than vice versa, because of the submission issue. But I planned on working for the Lord and not getting married, so I never thought about it much.
Some time ago, I started listening to people who talked good Christianese and seemed, on the surface, to be serious about Christianity. They had this weird way of seeing Christianity in pink and blue: Christian men should be and do A, B and C (for example, be bold and take initiative), but if women are/ do that, it’s bad. Women ought to be X, Y and Z. They said they supported something called “patriarchy“, but I had no idea then what it meant. They also spoke a lot of so-called “Biblical womanhood.”
I swallowed a few of their ideas because they seemed, at first glance, “Godly.” It was not “Godly”. It was poison. With terrible cramps from this poison, I went to God and asked Him to show me the truth. . He led me to study the Word, to look up the context and even some New Testament Greek. What I found caused me to vomit out all the poison I swallowed there. But it wasn’t just the poison inside the cups that hurt. It was the cups themselves that had very sharp edges, the people claiming to be “Biblical.”
And now I walk around with a message: “Biblical womanhood and manhood” is a myth. God does not place women in the small box that some people want to put them in. And patriarchy is idolatry of men. I can defend that view from scripture. I can also show, in some places, how patriocentric views/ Biblical manhood and womanhood views contradict each other, or lead to very un-Christlike behavior in the real world.
(In my studies of what God really say about the genders, I also happened to come to a different conclusion of submission than before. I am very enthusiastic about submission now, and can recommend it to every believer: Wives should submit to their spouses, and husbands should do the same! We should submit to our church leaders – and they should submit to us! But while I can defend my new view on submission, it is not central to my blog. My “submit, how” posts, for example, are something I’d have agreed with as a complementarian too. )
Nonsense, misogeny and idolatry in the name of complementarianism/ patriarchy is my real target. Things like “The Bible say women should stay at home” or “the man should be the home priest “, neither of which is in the Bible, is the kind of thing that drives this blog. If anyone gives hateful drivel like “When a husband is abusive, the wife should submit even if she gets killed“, he is to use the words of Jesus, “straining gnats and swallowing camels.“
Christ came to “heal the brokenhearted, to preach deliverance to the captives … to set at liberty them that are bruised…” His yoke is easy and his burden light. He doesn’t lock women up in that box. He taught that hearing the word and keeping it is more important than raising great children, and sitting at His feet learning “a better part” for a woman than housekeeping. At least one married woman traveled around with Jesus with no mention where her husband was, and Jesus clearly did not believe in the man-as-provider box, as women looked after him from their own income. Christ doesn’t force men into leadership roles just because they are male, but command them, as anyone else, to serve. I want people, male and female to be all God called them to. Women should not be limited by commandments of men. Men should not be enabled to sinfully Lord it over others. For one thing, the world sees what Christians do and reject the God they see in Christians as unjust. For another, loving the Lord above all mean a willingness to follow Him, to reject your culture’s ways – including “Biblical” manhood and womanhood culture, or patriarchal culture – for the plans He has.