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

jesus_mary_marthaSamuel Martin has an interesting take on what it means that Paul sat at the feet of Gamaliel:

In his first Jerusalem trial (Acts 22:2), Paul introduced himself to the Sanhedrin as he who learned “at the feet of Gamaliel.” This phrase means more than we would take it for at first glance. It sounds like Paul is giving homage to his teacher, and that he hung on Gamaliel’s every word. Actually, Paul used this figure of speech to remind the Sanhedrin just how important a figure Saul of Tarsus was, even from his earliest years in Jerusalem. In the synagogues, students sat in an arrangement that reflected Read the rest of this entry »

Nate Sparks recently published an open letter to The Gospel Coalition, listing the troublesome, often abuse-condoning, things said and done by many members of TGC. Among others he discusses Doug Wilson, a preacher who officiated at the wedding of one of his students, a guy he knew to be a pedophile, to a young woman. (This pedophile has now been forbidden almost all contact with his own baby from said marriage, due to worries about the child’s safety.) Wilson also made troubling claims on slavery and on sexual violence.

Rachel Held Evans linked on Twitter to this letter, and made a claim which goes somewhat further than what DW actually said:

Doug Wilson says unsubmissive women deserve to be raped. Why do @TGC & @JohnPiper continue to support him?

Wilson responded by showing that he did not say what Evans claimed: Read the rest of this entry »

<< Continued from here

Religious Patriarchy adds to that: If she is not following the lead of men, she is not fulfilling her reason for existence. Piper, for example, say:

At the heart of mature womanhood is a freeing disposition to affirm, receive, and nurture strength and leadership from worthy men…

There are other problems with Piper’s idea that I won’t unpack now. (For example, how does this definition of mature womanhood differ from how a 5-year old girl who loves her dad responds to him? What is the difference, to Piper, between an adult woman and a preschooler?)

For now, I will only ask: How does a woman follow men, if they say anything and everything she does or fails to do is wrong? The only answer, if you do not leave patriarchy behind, is to take one man (a husband, a father, usually) as your authority, and obey him instead of other men. In that way, religious patriarchy benefits from woman-blaming in secular culture, and cannot oppose it.



(Note: This -secular – article does not condone all choices women make. It condemns the attitude that women should always be blamed, whatever happens to them.)


If you don’t go out on a date with the creepy guy who ask you out, men say you are rude. Some even say you are to blame if his acute sense of rejection motivates him to start a shooting spree.

If you go out with a creep and he rapes you, they say you should have sent out stronger “no” signals: Your clothing, your behaviour, your going on a date with him, means you provoked him.

If you go out on a date but is just platonically friendly while on the date Read the rest of this entry »

Christian book store

Trinkets at the front, Bibles at the back: This American Christian book store is larger than most I have seen, but also has other things in front and books at the back. It is also known to be complementarian, as the chain once famously took a magazine with woman pastors from the shelves. (Photo taken from the Internet.)

“Great news”, my serious Christian friend said. “Gospel Direct will take over the Lux Verbi store in Welkom.” Lux Verbi was the Christian bookstore in Welkom. Gospel Direct is a company that sells religious CDs, DVDs, and books. (And trinkets like pencils and mugs with religious messages.)

He was happy, because Gospel Direct has a marketing strategy, and capacity to buy in bulk, that enables them to sell gospel CDs more cheaply. In the time since – and of course Gospel Direct cannot take sole responsibility – books became few and superficial in the store, and DVS’s and books -even diaries – are more likely than ever to be “for women” or “for men” with a complementarian slant.

Why do complementarianism – the term and the majority of material – come from the USA? And why is bookstores even more infested with it than the local church is? Read the rest of this entry »

From about entering teenage-hood, I felt that I was not womanly enough:

Not womanly enough, because the idea of one-sided submission to a man scared me.

Not womanly enough, because my facial features are wide and indelicate.

Not womanly enough, because Read the rest of this entry »

Naomi was bitter. She lost everything. She moved to a strange country with her husband, and now he and both her adult sons were dead. In a patriarchal world with no social security, where women trusted the men in their lives to provide, she had nothing. No husband, no sons. After a decade, she was on her way back. All she had was her also-widowed daughter-in-law, Ruth.

I don’t know how much or little Naomi felt that Ruth’s presense could have helped her: Ruth is from a different culture – where Naomi would still have some distant family in the new country, Ruth had nobody. On the other hand, young(ish) Ruth was a better candidate for a future marriage, and therefore a family that Naomi could be a part of. Naomi may have appreciated the company, but on the other hand, she may not. Read the rest of this entry »

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