Because Christianity is bigger than Biblical manhood or Biblical womanhood (Blog of Retha Faurie)

Focus on the Family recently suggested something that seems, at first glance, to flatter women. I did not feel flattered at all. They suggested women are the number one way to change men for the better:

… the most fundamental social problem every community must solve is the unattached male. If his sexual, physical, and emotional energies are not governed and directed in a pro-social, domesticated manner, he will become the village’s most malignant cancer. Wives and children, in that order, are the only successful remedy ever found. – Glenn T. Stanton

This is highly problematic, to say the least.

From the theological perspective :

Have Focus On The Family never heard of Jesus and being born again? Surely Jesus is better at changing humans – even the alleged “malignant cancer” called unattached males – from the inside than any woman is? How could a Christian™ organization say that women, not Jesus, is the only remedy for men’s bad tendencies?

Stanton also says: Read the rest of this entry »

You know the comp claim that the marriage relationship is a symbol of the relationship between the church and Jesus, right? (From here on I will use the acronym SOREJAB for Symbol Of the RElationship between Jesus And his Body.)

And how, under their doctrines, women should stay at home and not preach and obey men like the church stayed at home and did not preach and obeyed Jesus?Just kidding, of course. The church preached and did not stay at home, and spread the message of God as far as they went, and obeyed Jesus.

But here is the thing. Jesus, except for the hard part of dying to save us, which we could not do for ourselves, seems not to be so much into “roles” that is only for him or only for the church. Here are texts which make me believe he was not much into such “roles.”

2 Cor. 3:18 And we all, who with unveiled faces contemplate the Lord’s glory, are being transformed into his image with ever-increasing glory, which comes from the Lord, who is the Spirit. – NIV

Christians become more like Jesus? Is women supposed to become more like men, then, by SOREJAB doctrine?

Mark 10:45 For even the Son of Man did not come to be served, but to serve, and to give his life as a ransom for many.” – NIV

Is serving only the role of Jesus, not the church? Of course not!

John 14:12 Very truly I tell you, whoever believes in me will do the works I have been doing, and they will do even greater things than these, because I am going to the Father. (NIV)

If SOREJAB is good Bible interpretation, women should do the same things their husbands do and even greater things. Which is, of course, not a gender role. If men and women should picture Jesus and the church (Biblical Manhood and Womanhood doctrine), John 14:12 would blow gender roles (the prime purpose of Biblical Manhood and Womanhood doctrine) out of the water.

Many parents are very worried that our sons are not masculine enough nowadays. Take for example Pastor Pete N. Jones, apparently a fan of Doug Wilson. He made a list of questions for conservative mothers, asking them to ponder how they may cause their sons to not be masculine enough. For the sake of his readers, I summed up his points in a handy flow chart:

conservative women guide

Just kidding, of course. Masculinity is not some special thing boys have to learn to follow God. Males and females simply has to get the fruit of the Spirit. And male Christianity is not so different from female Christianity that Jesus could not be a model for women, or a mother for her boys.

Blaming women in church for what men are is easy, but God will ask men to account for themselves. Mothers (the church kind and the literal kind) will not be asked to give account for the choices of men.

Tim Challies just wrote an article “Why I am not an egalitarian” in which he, unsurprisingly, does not actually discuss egalitarian theology beyond a vague assertion of “I believe the position fails to withstand serious biblical scrutiny” and vaguely mentioning a few texts which he say is “challenges to the egalitarian position that [he] consider insurmountable.” Challies never actually mentions the egalitarian answers or why they fail.

His only other point is that complementarianism works in his marriage. One example of a complementarian marriage working does not mean complementarianism works. One example of a complementarian man being happy does not even mean it works for his wife.

Nevertheless, we could compare his assertion of how complementarianism work to his statement on what it is. Predictably, he defines complementarianism this way: Read the rest of this entry »

It’s funny you know, sometimes I receive messages from people telling me that I see what I want to see when I look at ancient texts and manuscripts of the Bible.

I can guarantee that when I went to a local seminary library to begin studying “women in the church,” I did not “want” to see that my Bible translation, my church, my pastor, my denomination were all badly mistaken. I was not at all prepared for the overt misogyny of some of our most influential theologians.

I was staggered to see how women have been treated throughout history by the church.

I’ll never forget the moment it suddenly occurred to me that the church has been oppressing, silencing and abusing women for centuries. I felt like I was having a heart-attack: dizzy, hot, searing chest pain that made me drop to my knees in the middle of the library aisle. I began to weep openly and beg God for mercy.

Seeing what I wanted to see?

No, I don’t think so.

– Quoted from Facebook.

When I found egalitarianism, I was confused between the soft complementarianism I always knew, and extreme patriarchy which I was finding on the Internet, and I prayed:

God, please show me the truth. I may have been wasting my life this far, teaching (other people’s) children about you as a single woman. You may want me to take a husband even though I know of no man I am interested in, and sleep with him whenever he say so and let him be my authority and raise his children. Tell me if that is your will for me. If I wasted my life this far, if your plan for me is very different, please tell me.

What God showed me when I started searching was much better than the soft complementarianism that I knew. It was also incomparably more exciting, just, logical and Christ-exalting than the drab legalistic patriarchy that I would have accepted, if God told me to do so.

When you found egalitarianism, was it what you wanted to see? Please tell me in the comments!

We have all heard it before: The party line of complementarians is that the woman’s role is just as important as the man’s role, only different. But when complementarian men talk to other complementarian men, they sing a different tune. Listen to Jason Allen, president of Midwestern Baptist Theological Seminary in Kansas City, Mo.:

Biblical complementarity is not fundamentally about what opportunities women must forego but what responsibilities men must take up… Complementarianism is not fundamentally what women can do but about what men must do.”

148r31This message was given at the Council for Biblical Manhood and Womanhood annual conference, April 11-12 this year.

Did you catch that? Complementarianism is not about what women must take up and what men must take up, what women must forego and what men must forego. It is not equally much about what what women can/ must do and what men can/ must do. That would, potentially, have been ‘complementary’, in the real sense of the word.

It is about what responsibilities men must take up, what men must do. Read the rest of this entry »

This letter was written by an Internet friend of mine in the USA. She does not have her own blog and wants to remain anonymous.

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An open letter to complementarians

woman-shadow111Thank you, Vision Forum and complementarians. Thank you for destroying my life and the lives of countless other women. Thank you for telling my sisters in Christ that our only worth is based on my ability to serve men. Thank you for teaching it is a sin for a woman to have a career, because you did not just ruin the lives of those in your movement, you stunted and hampered my growth because I felt guilty for going to college and living away from my parents. Thank you, complementarians, for turning the clock back in the church back to the 1850’s. Thank you for telling me my novels1 are sinful because they do not fit your gender roles.

Yes, thank you teaching me to hate men because your teaching give men all accountability and no responsibility. Thank you for telling me my crushes on famous men I do not even know in real life were the same as adultery . Thank you for telling me my heart is not whole because I’ve dated some men where the relationship did not end in marriage. Thank you for reinforcing the double sexual standard, allowing young men to ‘sow their wild oats’ but telling young women never to feel any affection for males. Thank you for teaching me being raped twice made me unfit to be a bride and I caused it by ‘dressing too slutty.’ Thank you for opening me up to demons because I believed God hated women. Thank you for making the USA, one of the most egal countries on Earth, once more a patriarchal society. Thank you for your rigid interpretations of Ephesians 5:22 and 1 Timothy 2:12. Thank you for teaching Christian men not to respect women. Thank you for your lies and your destruction of lives in the name of Jesus. Thank you for focusing on a non-issue when millions are dying without Christ. Yes, thank you very much! Read the rest of this entry »

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