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

I actually stumbled upon the patriarchy idea while interested in freedom. How ironic. I was looking up libertarianism, while thinking about the advantages of a small government that only see to a few basic things like police, courts (with few and just laws) and border protection. I jumped into the blog of a self-admitted “Christian libertarian”, and started commenting.

It didn’t take long to notice these guys are weird. Why, when I talk of freedom, is it regarded in a different way than the same statement from a male? Why did some of them accuse me of being a man with a female nickname? And why, when I show, in one of the religious threads on the blog, that they understand something wrong, did they call me a “feminist”? And these apparently “biblically” religious people refuse to learn anything from what I clearly show from the bible!

How can a guy call himself a libertarian, and offer the opinion that women should not be allowed to travel alone? (Apparently, women alone, far from where they live, are more likely to get drunk or sleep around. But so are men, and that blogger don’t say men should not travel alone…)

Why this constant anti-woman speak, if they are Christians who should love others as themselves? This was beyond hypocrisy. Hypocrites know they have something to hide. Point out his double standards to a hypocrite, and he will be embarrassed or reason to you that this is not really double standards. If you point out their double standards (one for men, another for women) to patriarchy supporters, they are baffled that anyone could have something against double standards.

It was delusional. It was … narcissistic? … Schizophrenic? … Sociopathic? It drove me to sleeplessness and prayer and unsociability, desperately worrying about their wives and daughters – and for different reasons about myself. (Sleeplessness to the point where I struggled to concentrate at work, ironically remembering how they said “women should not work” when my work was not up to par…)

I heard them mention the word “patriarchy”, but I did not get how that tie in with their craziness. Until I started reading blogs like The Commandments of Men and Quivering Daughters.

I tried to find words for all that I saw there, to warn people to stay away from a movement like that. But others say it better. And these authors have a lot more experience of the patriarchy cult than I do:

Women under patriarchy cannot choose to follow Christ:

How can a woman under the thumb of patriarchy say to the Lord, “not my will but yours,” and “not my life but yours” when she has no will or life of her own? If her life and will do not exist, then the giving of herself fully to our Lord Jesus Christ is prevented or obstructed. Those who are not allowed to have a relationship, an opinion, an expression, a life, or a heart of their own will be hindered in entering into a personal relationship with the Lord because it is in the Lord’s name that they are told they do not exist. “The Lord is my shepherd” is taken out of their reach by those proclaiming the dominion of males, which then results in abuse, enslavement, and a rationale for men to fulfill their desires for power and the gratification of their own flesh. Jon Zens

 Patriarchy supporters have double standards:

The most disturbing thing about the hyper-fundamentalist, patriocentric crowd, though, is the hypocrisy of every political position they take. They want the government out of their lives as much as possible, with intrusion at an absolute minimum, no Big Brother forcing them to do things they don’t want, telling them how to do the things they are allowed to do. No controlling or meddling in their lives in areas the government has no right to be snooping and directing. They likely consider the old Soviet Union and it’s oppressive communist system to be very much the “Evil Empire” Reagan described it as. Freedom, freedom, and more freedom, so they say. I’m with them so far.

They want corndogs, apple-pie, Pepsi and Coke, and freedom galore for everyone, so they say – except for their own families (who are treated like their own personal state property), ruling their own homes in the oppressive style of Stalin, and except for those with opposing political views. Freedom…for them to be unabated religious tyrants and control the lives of others.

Democracy for themselves. Communism for their families and enemies.

Maybe it’s just me, but I just can’t get the math to work out right. – Lewis

 Patriarchy sets fathers as idols beside God, and men under patriarchy will often misuse scripture to get people to do as they say (not to only do as God say):

… the idea that Dad is equal to God as far as the kids were concerned was well taught and accepted by all of the ATIA families I knew, including my own.

Ill be quite blunt.
Every last ATIA family I knew parented like what is being described here.

As for Mr. Gothards teachings being bastardized…he is well aware of the issues his teaching create and does nothing that Ive seen to correct or even to address the problems.
I can only surmise that his silence lends itself to approval of such heavy handed, hate filled parenting practices. –Jenny

It is indeed. I find it rather interesting that the proponents of patriarchy declare so adamantly that rebellion (particularly “rebellion” against their special rules) is as the sin of witchcraft, when their own idolatry is listed right alongside witchcraft as a work of the flesh in Galatians 5:19-21. Just another thought. – Katherine

 In short, patriarchy is man-centred (man as in adult male, not as in human) in a way that will often be dangerous to others:

It seems that this set up is in the guise of protecting women, when it really is making men live like kings and have subjects. I dont care if it’s for love of country or anything else, you NEVER exchange freedom for protection. History should teach us that lesson. – Anonymous

One last thought: On patriocentric/ “biblical womanhood” blogs, (and their comments on the blogs of others) I often encountered the opinion – given by women – that women should defend men and never speak badly of them. I usually answer that with a point-blank question to the giver of that opinion: “If your husband or pastor molests your daughter, what will you do?Not one of them have yet answered that question. Someone who cannot answer that question clearly, is unfit to be a parent. It makes me quiver to think that some of them home school and have eight children.

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PS: Edited 2011/6/2 “beyond hypocrisy” is now better described, and headings was inserted to separate the quotes..

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Comments on: "“Biblical” patriarchy is NOT Christian" (17)

  1. 🙂

    I’m politically conservative to the dismay of my dear friend, Jane.

    I’ve often said, I’d be libertarian if there weren’t so many dang (and as you put it, hypocritical) weirdos in the movement.

    I’m for freedom for all including the little woman and the rug rats. (the little woman needs to walk in it now, on the equal level of her spouse, the rug rats need to grow into it so they can learn how to handle it as mature adults when they leave home.)

    I’ve often wondered about this extreme.
    I’ve also wondered about the other extreme…

    Anarchy.

    But libitarianism and anarchy begin to look like the same thing. The strong lording it over the weak.
    The rule of law, or absence thereof, is all about might makes right rather than might defending right.
    http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Might_makes_right
    It’s a perversion of the golden rule:
    Whoever has the gold (or power) makes the rules.

    And you are correct in saying, patriarchy is so far removed from ANYTHING that come out of the mouth of Jesus, it would be hysterical if it weren’t so deeply tragic.

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  2. that women should defend men and never speak badly of them

    —————————

    Strange how men can do it though.

    I was watching Freedom Riders on PBS online, and one comment truly struck me.

    ‘We deal with violence everyday in the south.

    They didn’t treat us like we were human.

    They treated us like vicous animals.

    Like they were always on guard thinking that we are going to do something to him – while they were doing it to us.’

    How true of Patriarchy as well!

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  3. Mara, I’ll just emphasize again that I am not calling myself libertarian, just that I thought over the pros and cons of it.

    And Hannah – it is tragic…

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  4. Oh, I didn’t think you were.

    I was just sharing my struggles with it, what I want it to be and what it actually should be as opposed to what men want to turn it into.

    It’s not about personal freedom.
    It’s about arrogant men having the freedom to set up their little fiefdoms.

    What a crock.

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  5. Kristen said:

    These people also want to use the Bible to justify this extreme form of capitalism. They claim the Bible supports ideas such as that giving to the poor should be completely voluntary, and that any form of redistribution of wealth is a sin. Not so. Old Testament law required land-owners to give to the poor through the gleaning laws and through required alms-giving. The Year of Jubilee was a massive redistribution of wealth every 50 years, which resulted in the prevention of all the nation’s resources being amassed into the hands of a few.

    I’m not saying we should adopt ancient Israel’s laws for our own– but I am saying that the idea that unbridled capitalism, with no restraints, is somehow “godly” is without biblical support.

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  6. Verity3 said:

    Mara and Kristen, you both nailed it. And thank you Retha, for compiling these insightful statements.

    Capitalism and libertarianism are such clear examples of “survival of the fittest,” I don’t know how professed anti-evolutionists can stomach it. But they do all the time, and don’t seem to see the contradiction.

    You are right, some are simply looking for the “freedom” to dominate others.

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  7. Verity3 said:

    I recently learned where people are getting the idea that the Bible supports the idea of fiscal conservatives hanging onto what is “theirs.” I heard it from the mouth of a fiscally conservative TV pastor. Basically, they take the list of what government does in Romans 13, and assume it is an exhaustive list.

    (Retha, if your site used smilies, mine would be butting her head against a wall right now.)

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  8. Mara, I know, you were not calling me a libertarian, I just chose to emphasize it.

    Kristen, it seems to me -you can correct me if I am wrong – that the Hebrews had pro-charity laws to help the poor, but they did not have much “goverment” involvement.

    Gleanings were collected by the poor themselves, not by goverment officials to redistribute. Laws about debt gave the bancrupt borrower a new chance, but they did not (like in the housing bubble?) make rules from above about having to lend, or promised to pay the lender back.

    There seemed to be almost no chance for goverment to be corrupt with welfare gifts, or misapply it by creating a permanent welfare dependent inderclass. But the laws were skewed towards helping the poor.

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  9. Kristen said:

    Retha, you are correct– but it’s difficult to see how the poor could collect directly in today’s non-agricultural society, where the wealth is not in the fields, but in bank vaults. In a large nation with money and not grain as its wealth base, some sort of middleman is necessary. And whoever it is should have some sort of oversight to make sure the middleman doesn’t “dip in.” Whether a public or a private middleman would be more effectual is an interesting question.

    But I think the main problem in our day has far less to do with government over-involvement, and far too much to do with laws that favor the rich amassing more and more wealth, while income for the rest of us goes down or remains flat. One percent of our nation now owns 30 percent of the nation’s wealth– and they’re using their power to “buy” elected officials. Stricter regulation would seem to be in order. The government needs checks and balances, but so does the private sector. They’re supposed to checking and balancing each other. Right now they’re assisting one another to fleece the rest of us.

    There are several places in the Bible, especially in the Prophets, where the voice of God laments the corruption of the rulers, especially judges who were taking bribes to favor the rich. This is the sort of thing that’s happening now with our lobbyists. Corporations have now been designated as “persons” having free speech rights, which enables the multi-millionnaire CEO to do all the campaign buying he likes. The corruption we have now is not really different from the corruption that occurred in ancient Israel. Not having a “welfare state” did not seem to have made a difference back then.

    As far as “rules from above,” isn’t that what the Law was? Telling a person they have to give alms was a rule from above. The laws were enforced first by judges and then by the king.

    The laws today are skewed towards making the rich richer. And there’s no Year of Jubilee to readjust matters. Taxation can help, but not when the outcry is against programs that help the poor rather than against laws that unbridle greed and allow it to run rampant. We are returning to an economy like that of the “robber barons” of the 1890s. This is not, I am sure, pleasing to God.

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  10. Thanks, Kristen and everyone. You give me an opportunity to think about politics and the bible from a different angle than before.

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  11. I agree 100%

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  12. […] question I sometimes ask those who strongly believe in hierarchy and authority structures. (Here and here are more discussions of the […]

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  13. […] an article named “Biblical patriarchy is NOT Christian“, I […]

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  14. Undercover Brother said:

    Funny how they never come up with any BIBLE VERSES to prove that “patriarchy is not biblical”.
    I wonder why.
    HAW HAW

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    • Firstly, in the similar post ( https://biblicalpersonhood.wordpress.com/2011/10/30/is-christian-patriarchy-biblical-links/ ) I link to many sources which use the Bible to refute patriarchy. So does most of the “Christian myths on gender and gender roles” links.

      If I do not get into such verses here, it is because every Christian – and the majority of non-Christians in countries with a high Christian population, know these things:

      > Judging unjustly is against God’s will. If I thus say patriarchy supporters judge a woman and man who does the same deed differently, most people see that patriarchy supporters do not think like God over justice.
      > Loving others as self is Christian, and therefore constantly speaking in an unloving way against half of humanity (the female half) is not Christian.
      > Choosing to follow Jesus is good, therefore an indictment that women under patriarchy cannot choose to follow Jesus needs no Bible verse.
      > There is no other mediator between humans and God. Therefore, a religion that places husbands and fathers in that spot is not Christianity.
      > Jesus care about protecting the least, but patriarchy mothers apparently do not, when it does not fit in with their theology. Therefore, without me citing a verse like “when you did it not to the least of these …”, people know this apperent disregard for their children’s safety is not Christian.

      … without me citing chapter and verse.

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    • Funny how Jesus never came up with (already existing prior to Him) BIBLE VERSES to prove the Pharisees were wrong. I wonder why?

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