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

Posts tagged ‘women’

Men should lead? Responding to Wbmoore (Part 3)

Ruling the household

Several places in the Bible historically calls someone a “head/ruler of the home”* without teaching he should be. Wbmoore mentions them in among others this sense (from his response on part 1)

But men are very obviously considered to be head of the house in both the Old and New Testaments. Take a look at the usage of oikodespotēs. It is a masculine noun and is only used to describe men. That term is translated as land owner and head of house.

But only one verse teaches about being “oikosdespotes” as a matter of Christian conduct! Titus 2:14 uses the female of that word, “oikosdespoteo”, to say that Paul wants widows to remarry and be good rulers of the home. God never says that he wants men to rule the home/ be “oikosdespotes”.

1Ti 5:14 I desire therefore that the younger widows marry, bear children, rule the household,

Wbmoore does not like my choice of translation, but that one is closest to the literal meaning of the Greek. “Oikosdespoteo” breaks down into “oikos” – home, and “despoteo” – “despot, ruler”. Paul also says this about despots (same Greek word, without the “oikos”):

 Tit 2:9 Exhort servants to be in subjection to their own masters (despots), and to be well-pleasing to them in all things;

Titus 2:9 is not the only verse about submitting to despots. If men should be subject to their despots, does this mean they should be “yes-dear-whatever-you-say”-obedient to their wives, without a mind of their own? No, of course not. When the Bible calls us to submission, whether we are male or female, whether to life partners or the church at large, “yes-dear-whatever-you-say”-obedience is not the relationship God dreams of for His free people. God has given minds to male and female, to the recently saved and the elders, because Christ’s body needs the minds and gifts of all.

Moore also says this on 1 Ti 5:14 in his headship post:

But this does not remove the need for her to do what God told Eve, to be ruled by her husband. – in much the same way a CEO is in charge of a company, yet is still subject to the Chairman of the Board.

But God did not tell Eve to be ruled by Adam, any more than He told Adam to leave all weeds on his land.

Ad hominems instead of answering

Me: And for the second part: Since the Bible does not contradict itself, either “wifes (submit) unto your own husbands as to the Lord”, or all the verses about having no other master except God, does not mean what it does on face value. Which do you think should be re-interpreted?

Wbmoore in his second response ‘answers’ the above with:

I said she is re-interpreting Genesis 3:16, or outright ignoring it. Is this because she wants to be like the world and a feminist, rather than obeying God and following her husband as scripture says to do?

Ignoring Genesis 3:16? The person who is ignoring something is him- he ignores the absence of any orders to Eve, and the absence of calling hers a curse in Genesis 3:16, and he is ignoring my question. Instead, I am called a “feminist”- the favourite complementarian ad hominem. And I am called “like the world”, without the accuser even knowing me to confirm/ bust that suspicion. Moore is probably unable to answer, and therefore try to insult rather than to answer. I don’t see any need to defend myself from false accusations (Matt. 5:11).

As for following a husband “as scripture says to do”, I have this far not married for the reasons scripture (1 Co 7:33-34) say it is better to stay single. And if I marry, I will treat my husband as scripture say. But I am looking for a husband that does not usurp authority scripture does not say he has.

Which brings me back to the question Moore failed to answer: Since the Bible does not contradict itself, either “wives (submit/ are subject) unto your own husbands as to the Lord”, or all the verses having no other master except God, does not mean what it does to Moore. How does Moore conciliate them? I conciliate them by understanding that submission is mutual*, and -like other gifts the Christian give- voluntary. It should not be preached one-sidedly as if it has more to say to wives than to husbands. It is no weapon to make a wife serve man instead of God, but a way to set both free from fighting for their wants to follow God instead.

Men-should-lead set husbands up for failure and too high expectations, struggling without their strong equal’s help at their sides. It leaves wives without many outlets for their equal God-given dominion over creation. It breaks down communication in marriage (She: “I am not satisfied with this decision but it is my role to submit quietly.” He: “Why is my wife growing distant? I thought she agreed we should do it like this.”). Men-should-lead quenches the work of the spirit through half of God’s people. It dishonours God as many women try to serve two masters and as the world insult the church for misogyny. It misrepresents the character of the Christ who came to set free the oppressed.



* Moore has said that husbands should also submit, and may tell me that he agrees with this mutuality. But despite this mutuality, he preaches male leadership. For this, there is no honest Biblical basis.


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