America’s Misapplication of the Golden Rule

Jesus Christ said in Luke 6:31 “And as ye would that men should do to you, do ye also to them likewise”.  This statement is often referred to as the “Golden Rule”.  The most common interpretation of this passage that is taught today is “Treat others as you would want to be treated if you were in their situation”. And that is actually a pretty accurate interpretation of what Christ was saying.

Over two and a half centuries since it’s founding, many Americans have used the “Golden Rule” to push their culture and government for new social acceptances and legal protections regarding marriage, gender roles and sexual behavior in America.  Below is a list of some these major changes.

20 Ways America Has Applied the “Golden Rule” to Gender Roles and Sex Over Two Centuries

  1. As men, we should want women to have the right to own property, because if we were in their shoes that is what we would want.
  2. As men, we should want women to be able to divorce their husbands in the same way and for the same reasons that men divorce their wives because if we were in their shoes that is what we would want.
  3. As men, we should want women to have the same custody rights to their children in divorce as men do, because if we were in their shoes that is what we would want.
  4. As men, we should want women to have the right to alimony and child support as they divorce their husbands, because if we were in their shoes that is what we would want.
  5. As fathers, we should never try to control or pressure our daughters in regard to their love lives, what men they see or what men they seek to marry because if we were in their shoes this is not how we would want to be treated.
  6. As men, we should want women to vote, because if we were in their shoes that is what we would want.
  7. As men, we should not want women excluded from any careers, because if we were in their shoes this is not how we would want to be treated.
  8. As Christian men, we should want Christian women to be able to hold any position in the church that a man can hold including that of being a Pastor, because if we were in their shoes this is what we would want.
  9. As men, we should not want women forbidden from having abortions, because if we were in their shoes, we would want the right to have an abortion.
  10. As husbands, we should not try to control our wife’s behavior by telling her whether she can work outside the home or not because if we were in her shoes this is not how we would want to be treated.
  11. As husbands, we should not try to control what friends our wife has or talks to because if we were in her shoes this is not how we would want to be treated.
  12. As husbands we should not try to control our wife’s behavior by telling her how much money she can spend on various items because if we were in her shoes this is not how we would want to be treated.
  13. As husbands, we should not try to control what church our wife attends because if we were in her shoes this is not how we would want to be treated.
  14. As husbands, we should not try to pressure our wife in any way to have sex if she is not in the mood or she tells us “no” because if we were in her shoes this is not how we would want to be treated.
  15. As men, we should not look at women as objects of potential visual and physical sexual pleasure because if we were women we would not want to be looked at in this way.
  16. As men, we should not seek out women as wives so we can take sexual pleasure in their bodies, so they can bear our children, care for our children and keep our homes while we go and make our mark on the world in our careers. Because after all, if we were women we would not want to be pursued by men for these reasons. But rather as men, we should want women to have the same career opportunities we do and we should want wives strictly for human companionship and as equal partners that we can share our lives with and not as “sex objects”, “breeding machines”, “nannies”, “cooks” and “maids”.
  17. As husbands, we should not enjoy the sight of or think of any other woman other than our wives in a sexual manner because if we were women, we would not want our husbands enjoying the sight or thought of any other woman but us.
  18. As heterosexual people, we should want homosexual people to be made to feel comfortable actively their lives as homosexuals and we should want them to have the right to marry just as we heterosexuals do. Because after all, if we were homosexuals that is how we would want to be treated.
  19. As cisgender people, we should want transgender people to be made to feel comfortable being transgender and not as if they have a mental disorder. Because after all, if we were transgender, that is how we would want to be treated.
  20. As cisgender heterosexual Christians, we would should want homosexual and transgender persons to be able to join our churches as members and even lead our congregations as clergy.

 

I have made an effort in the list above to try and put the changes in chronological order.  In the beginning of the list you will note women’s rights changes in regard to property and divorce rights which occurred from the mid-19th century up to the beginning of the 20th century. These rights were fought for by women and granted to them before their crowning achievement of Woman’s Suffrage in 1920.  Also note that just before talking about women voting I talk about women not wanting to be under their father’s authority for marriage.  This started in the late 19th century with the advent of the new practice of “dating” which encouraged women to reject their father’s authority over them in seeking a husband.

Then of course as the list progresses, we see the new changes that Second Wave Feminism brought us in regard to telling men what they should want women and marriage for. And finally, we see the changes that have occurred over the last decade regarding the treatment of LGBTQ persons.

As we look at the list above there is a key word, we must take notice of.  And that key word is “want”.

Anyone seeking to apply Christ’s statement in Luke 6:31, otherwise known as the “Golden Rule”, must take into account what God says we should want.  Failure to do this will cause the gross misapplication we have seen of the “Golden Rule” in America over the past two centuries.

In the Gospel of Matthew we read an extended version of the “Golden Rule”:

“Therefore all things whatsoever ye would that men should do to you, do ye even so to them: for this is the law and the prophets.

Matthew 7:12 (KJV)

What was Christ saying here? He was saying that the entire foundation of the “Golden Rule” is the Word of God, the Bible.  And what is the foundation of all moral truth in the Bible?  The answer is given to us by Christ later in the Gospel of Matthew:

“36 Master, which is the great commandment in the law?

37 Jesus said unto him, Thou shalt love the Lord thy God with all thy heart, and with all thy soul, and with all thy mind. 38 This is the first and great commandment.  39 And the second is like unto it, Thou shalt love thy neighbour as thyself.

40 On these two commandments hang all the law and the prophets.”

Matthew 22:36-40 (KJV)

So, the greatest command is to love the Lord our God with all our heart, our soul and our mind.  And the second one, to love our neighbor as our self, is built upon the first.  Christ was quoting two commands from the Law of Moses.

The first is found in the book of Deuteronomy:

“And thou shalt love the Lord thy God with all thine heart, and with all thy soul, and with all thy might.”

Deuteronomy 6:5 (KJV)

The second is found in the book of Leviticus:

“Thou shalt not avenge, nor bear any grudge against the children of thy people, but thou shalt love thy neighbour as thyself: I am the Lord.”

Leviticus 19:18 (KJV)

Now here comes the million-dollar question. How do we as Bible believing Christians know if we are loving God and loving our neighbor as ourselves by God’s definition?  The answer is given to us near the end of the New Testament in the following Scripture passage:

“2 By this we know that we love the children of God, when we love God, and keep his commandments. 3 For this is the love of God, that we keep his commandments: and his commandments are not grievous.

1 John 5:2 (KJV)

The definition of loving God, loving our neighbors and following Christ’s “Golden Rule” is all premised upon one simple truth.

That we are keeping God’s commands in all we do.  That we love what he loves.  That we hate what he hates.  That we want for ourselves what he wants for us.

This Scriptural truth I have just mentioned runs directly contrary to the vast majority of American teaching both outside and sadly even inside most Christian churches today.  We no longer want to adjust our wants and desires to what God wants us to want.  But instead we are trying to transpose on to God our wants and desires.  Today we actually have churches teaching that God is a feminist and that he is pro-LGBTQ.

The Scriptures actually warn of this time coming and at the same time they command for those of us who are faithful to God’s Word to call out this wickedness:

“2 Preach the word; be instant in season, out of season; reprove, rebuke, exhort with all long suffering and doctrine.

3 For the time will come when they will not endure sound doctrine; but after their own lusts shall they heap to themselves teachers, having itching ears; 4 And they shall turn away their ears from the truth, and shall be turned unto fables.

5 But watch thou in all things, endure afflictions, do the work of an evangelist, make full proof of thy ministry.”

2 Timothy 4:2-5 (KJV)

We Must Change Our Wants to What God Wants for Us

David wrote by the inspiration of God what should be the desire of every man and woman who seeks to please God with their lives and show their love for him:

“Teach me thy way, O Lord; I will walk in thy truth: unite my heart to fear thy name.”

Psalm 86:11 (KJV)

“With my whole heart have I sought thee: O let me not wander from thy commandments.”

Psalm 119:10 (KJV)

So now we must tackle the question of what God wants for men and women which should determine what men and women want for themselves.

Should Women Want Equal Rights with Men?

While Genesis 9:6 tells us that men and women are both made in the image of God, we find in 1 Corinthians 11:7 that only man “is the image and glory of God:  but the woman is the glory of the man”.  And later in that same passage in I Corinthians 11:9 we read “Neither was the man created for the woman; but the woman for the man”.

In the Apostle Paul’s letter to the Ephesians he gives us God purpose and design in marriage:

“23 For the husband is the head of the wife, even as Christ is the head of the church: and he is the saviour of the body. 24 Therefore as the church is subject unto Christ, so let the wives be to their own husbands in every thing.

25 Husbands, love your wives, even as Christ also loved the church, and gave himself for it; 26 That he might sanctify and cleanse it with the washing of water by the word, 27 That he might present it to himself a glorious church, not having spot, or wrinkle, or any such thing; but that it should be holy and without blemish.

28 So ought men to love their wives as their own bodies. He that loveth his wife loveth himself. 29 For no man ever yet hated his own flesh; but nourisheth and cherisheth it, even as the Lord the church”

Ephesians 5:23-29 (KJV)

In 1 Corinthians 14:35 the Apostle Paul further elaborated on the husband’s duty to be his wife’s spiritual authority and teacher:

“And if they will learn any thing, let them ask their husbands at home: for it is a shame for women to speak in the church.”

1 Corinthians 14:35 (KJV)

And the Apostle Peter gave the following exhortation to women:

“5 For after this manner in the old time the holy women also, who trusted in God, adorned themselves, being in subjection unto their own husbands: 6 Even as Sara obeyed Abraham, calling him lord: whose daughters ye are, as long as ye do well, and are not afraid with any amazement.”

I Peter 3:5-6 (KJV)

God created marriage as picture of the relationship between himself and his people.  God is pictured as husband to Israel in the Old Testament and Christ is pictured as a husband to his Church in the New Testament.  Men as husbands picture God in leading, teaching, correcting, rebuking, providing for and protecting their wives as Christ does his church.  Women as wives picture the people of God in their submission to, service to and dependence upon their husbands for their spiritual leading and teaching as well as their physical provision and protection.

Based upon the clear teachings of the Scriptures shown above we can see that women should have no want or desire for equality with men and that they instead should want to be under the authority of men in all areas of their lives whether it is civil government, the church or in their marriage.

Should Daughters Want to Be Free of Their Father’s Authority Before They Are Married?

The Scriptures give us the following commands regarding a father’s authority over his daughter:

“2 If a man vow a vow unto the Lord, or swear an oath to bind his soul with a bond; he shall not break his word, he shall do according to all that proceedeth out of his mouth.

3 If a woman also vow a vow unto the Lord, and bind herself by a bond, being in her father’s house in her youth; 4 And her father hear her vow, and her bond wherewith she hath bound her soul, and her father shall hold his peace at her; then all her vows shall stand, and every bond wherewith she hath bound her soul shall stand.

5 But if her father disallow her in the day that he heareth; not any of her vows, or of her bonds wherewith she hath bound her soul, shall stand: and the Lord shall forgive her, because her father disallowed her.”

Numbers 30:2-5 (KJV)

“Take ye wives, and beget sons and daughters; and take wives for your sons, and give your daughters to husbands, that they may bear sons and daughters; that ye may be increased there, and not diminished.”

Jeremiah 29:6 (KJV)

“16 And if a man entice a maid that is not betrothed, and lie with her, he shall surely endow her to be his wife. 17 If her father utterly refuse to give her unto him, he shall pay money according to the dowry of virgins.”

Exodus 22:16-17 (KJV)

There is a reason that we have fathers walk their daughters down the aisle and then we have the traditional statement at weddings “who gives this woman to be wed” and before modern times it was not “her mother and I” but rather it was her father alone saying “I do”.

This tradition is actually firmly rooted in the Word of God as is shown in the passages above.  In God’s design fathers give or refuse their daughters for marriage and men take women in marriage with the permission of the woman’s father.

Now there are of course exceptions to this rule when women are widows like in the story of Ruth and Boaz (Ruth 3:8-9).  Also, the Bible makes an exception for this rule of having the father’s permission when men take wives as the spoils of war as seen in Deuteronomy 21:11-14.

Based upon the clear teachings of the Scriptures shown above we can see that a daughter should want to be under her father’s authority before marriage and she should want his direction and blessing for marriage.

Should people want to be LGBTQ or live the LGBTQ lifestyle?

The Scriptures have the following things to say in regard to LGBTQ persons:

“So God created man in his own image, in the image of God created he him; male and female created he them.”

Genesis 1:27 (KJV)

“The woman shall not wear that which pertaineth unto a man, neither shall a man put on a woman’s garment: for all that do so are abomination unto the Lord thy God.”

Deuteronomy 22:5 (KJV)

“If a man also lie with mankind, as he lieth with a woman, both of them have committed an abomination: they shall surely be put to death; their blood shall be upon them.”

Leviticus 20:13 (KJV)

“26 For this cause God gave them up unto vile affections: for even their women did change the natural use into that which is against nature: 27 And likewise also the men, leaving the natural use of the woman, burned in their lust one toward another; men with men working that which is unseemly, and receiving in themselves that recompence of their error which was meet.”

Romans 1:26-27 (KJV)

Based upon the clear teachings of the Scriptures shown above we can see that no person should want to be made comfortable being any part of LGBTQ.  But rather such persons should be ashamed of such desires.

Should Men Want Women for Sex, Having Children and Caring for their Homes?

The Scriptures give the following exhortations to young women:

“I will therefore that the younger women marry, bear children, guide the house, give none occasion to the adversary to speak reproachfully.”

1 Timothy 5:14 (KJV)

“4 That they may teach the young women to be sober, to love their husbands, to love their children, 5 To be discreet, chaste, keepers at home, good, obedient to their own husbands, that the word of God be not blasphemed.”

Titus 2:4-5 (KJV)

And the Scriptures gives the following exhortation to men:

“18 Let thy fountain be blessed: and rejoice with the wife of thy youth. 19 Let her be as the loving hind and pleasant roe; let her breasts satisfy thee at all times; and be thou ravished always with her love.”

Proverbs 5:18-19 (KJV)

Based upon the clear teachings of the Scriptures shown above we can see that men should indeed desire to marry young women for sexual pleasure, for them to bear children and for them to guide and keep their homes.

Conclusion

I have shown here conclusive proof from the Bible that in order to properly apply the “Golden Rule” Christ gave that we must take into account what God wants us to want and what he wants others to want.

For instance, often times as parents we will find that our children do not want to do the things they should want to do.  They should want to do their homework and get good grades.  But sometimes they simply do not want to do their homework.

Now if we were to put ourselves in their shoes at their age, we may have felt the same way.   But does that mean we should let them not do their homework? Of course not.  Their want is WRONG. It is not what God wants them to want.

In the same way men are not breaking Christ’s “Golden Rule” by wanting women as wives for sexual pleasure, for them to bear children and for them to guide and keep their homes.  And men are not wrong for wanting to lead, teach and mold their wives as they see fit according to the Word of God.

A man is no more wrong for wanting to control and guide his wife’s actions than a parent is for wanting to control and guide their child’s actions.

Some may say “but women are not children” and that is a very true and Biblical statement.  But it is equally true and Biblical to state that women are not men either.  In other words, children are not equal with women, but also women are not equal with men.

It is modern society that has invented two new social classes, Adults and Minors.  But God’s design has three social classes, Men, Women and Children.

And finally, on the topic of LGBTQ persons and how the “Golden Rule” applies to them.   Clearly no LGBTQ person should be “proud” of their sinful desires, but rather they should be ashamed of them and seek help to overcome such wicked desires.

Christians are not breaking Christ’s “Golden Rule” in refusing to make LGBTQ persons comfortable in their wicked desires nor in refusing to allow them to become members of or clergy in churches.

Secular Liberals are absolutely right about one thing that many Christians refuse to accept.  There is absolutely an “intersectionality” between women’s rights and LGBTQ  rights.   LGBTQ rights are a direct result of the Women’s Right’s Movements of the mid 19th Century. This is a reality that Bible believing Christians must face and address in their churches.

So what is the “Golden Rule” when understood in the entire context of the Bible?

We should do unto others as God would desire us to want done to ourselves if we were in their position.

Men Should Be Attracted to Loud and Opinionated Women?

Are men wrong for finding educated, opinionated and boisterous women unattractive? And conversely, is it wrong for men to desire women that are “quiet” and “delicate”? The answer according to Paul Maxwell is a resounding “yes” to both of these questions.  And he condemns men for having these preferences toward women and admonishes such men to “grow” as in “grow up” and get with the times.  He says men need to stop being “insecure” in finding such women who are “outperforming men” in areas of education and their careers as “intimidating”.  Instead he argues that men need to rethink and change what they find valuable in women so that they will find “female strength captivatingly attractive”.

And Paul Maxwell is not some secular feminist.  In fact, he is a Christian blogger who often speaks against feminism in churches. He attempts to base his argument that men should in fact be attracted to loud and boisterous women on the Bible.  The question is, did he succeed in trying to build his argument on the Scriptures?

Below is the introduction to an article written by Paul Maxwell for DesiringGod.org entitled “Real Men Love Strong Women”:

 “I’ve heard it too many times: “A man likes a quiet woman.” “Guys don’t respond well to smart girls.” “Educated women are too intimidating to attract good men.

I understand why we believe these things. It’s a nice story. It makes sense of the success of some women to find husbands, and the failure of others. As Christians (and as humans), we feel very clever when we get to diagnose the cause and cure of singleness. “You’re too opinionated.” “You’re too boisterous.” “A woman should be small, quiet, and delicate.

Yet, it’s easy to forget in the midst of all our diagnosing: whether a woman is “intimidating” is a factor of male perception, not female personality. Do we want women to be less intimidating? That’s a question to be put to men who experience them as such, and we can only wait for such men to grow. The real question we need to ask is: Do we want women to be weak? And the answer must forever be, on the basis of Scripture, “May it never be.”

 

Maxwell tells us that when men seek women that are quiet, delicate and less educated that they are in fact seeking women that are weaker and “on the basis of Scripture” he tells us men should never be looking for these “weak” women as he calls them.

 But What Does God say about Quiet Women?

Right from the outset, Maxwell shows his disdain for men who “like a quiet woman”.  But listen to what the Scriptures below say about quiet women.

“1 Likewise, ye wives, be in subjection to your own husbands; that, if any obey not the word, they also may without the word be won by the conversation of the wives;

2 While they behold your chaste conversation coupled with fear.

3 Whose adorning let it not be that outward adorning of plaiting the hair, and of wearing of gold, or of putting on of apparel;

4 But let it be the hidden man of the heart, in that which is not corruptible, even the ornament of a meek and quiet spirit, which is in the sight of God of great price.

5 For after this manner in the old time the holy women also, who trusted in God, adorned themselves, being in subjection unto their own husbands:

6 Even as Sara obeyed Abraham, calling him lord: whose daughters ye are, as long as ye do well, and are not afraid with any amazement.

I Peter 3:1-6 (KJV)

Mr. Maxwell thinks men are wrong for placing high value on a woman having a quiet spirit.  But God says that women who have a “meek and quiet spirit” are of “great price” which would mean “great value” in his sight. So right out of the gate we can see that Mr. Maxwell has built his entire premise in direct contradiction to the explicit teachings of the Word of God.

Then to support the false opening premise of his article, Mr. Maxwell does what a lot of liberal Christians do and he engages in using examples of women doing various things in the Bible as the basis of his false belief when we have clear Scripture statements to the contrary as we have just shown above.

Strong Women Reject the Requests of Evil Men?

Maxwell tells us that “strong women expose evil men” and he give us the story of Jael in Judges 4:21 who drove a peg into the Canaanite General Sisera.   He tells us the following of Jael:

“Thank God Jael wasn’t meek and submissive and respectful toward this friend of her wayward husband. She wasn’t one to be trampled on. Strong women reject the requests of evil men.”

Does God tell women to reject the requests of evil men or does he tell women to reject evil requests from any man?  I would argue the answer is the latter.  Acts 5:29 tells us that “We ought to obey God rather than men” and 1 Timothy 5:22 tells us we are not to “be partaker of other men’s sins”.

In fact, the Bible says the opposite of what Mr. Maxwell has just said.  God actually tells women to obey the requests of evil men as long those requests are not sinful in nature.

A man who does not “obey the word” is by nature a sinful man, and could in fact be an evil man.  God tells women to submit to men who “obey not the word”.  A woman’s submission to her husband IS NOT conditioned on him being a good and obedient man to God.

Jael did not reject Sisera’s request because he was an evil man or because his request was evil but rather, she rejected his request and instead killed him because he was an enemy of her people and God wanted him to die.  The story of Jael is not a model for the normal relationship that God meant there to be between men and women, especially that of husbands and wives.

Strong Women Rebuke Good Men?

Maxwell next tells us that “Strong women rebuke good men” and he gives us the example of Abigail in I Samuel 25:39.

Maxwell states:

“David was attracted to this strong woman for her strength, for her rebuke, and for her character. Abigail made life harder for David…

Strong women rebuke good men, who need help in their weaknesses, who need someone to help them see how to be strong.”

 

NOTHING in this passage says Abigail rebuked David.  But rather she humbled herself before him constantly calling him “my lord” and then David said this of what she said to him:

“32 And David said to Abigail, Blessed be the Lord God of Israel, which sent thee this day to meet me:33 And blessed be thy advice, and blessed be thou, which hast kept me this day from coming to shed blood, and from avenging myself with mine own hand.”

1 Samuel 25:32-33 (KJV)

Abigail did not come to David to rebuke him, but rather to humbly plead with him and to give him advice.

Strong Women Raise Believing Men

Maxwell in this section reveals how his upbringing shaped his view of the role of women.  His father was not in the picture at an early age and his mother had to raise him doing the job of two parents.  Below are a few statements he makes based on the reality that sometimes women are abandoned by their husbands and must raise children on their own:

“In an ideal world, men and women would partner together in their strength. But we live in a world where we need strong women to make men strong, because sometimes there simply are no men there to do it…

in an age when fathers often fail to bestow the gift of faith to their children, the future often hangs on the strength of women to do that gospel work.”

 

Notice Maxwell’s condescension toward men saying they “often fail in bestowing the gift of faith to their children”.   What about women who fail to be the example of a wife and mother God intended them to be? What about fathers who have to take of children whose mother’s abandon them or do not lead a life of faith before their children?

This is an example of how sometimes we cannot see past our own upbringing.  This is similar to how children who were abused growing up can tend to see most parents as potential abusers or how women who were raped or molested can tend to see all men as potential rapists and molesters.  In this same way Maxwell presents a very dark and dismal view of how men will “often fail” women and children in this world and so we should raise women to prepare for this.

According to Maxwell, in raising women to be ready for the failures of men we must raise them to expose evil men, not submit to any request by evil men (even it if not a sinful request) and also to rebuke good men.  In his view, we should raise our daughters to be loud and opinionated, rather than quiet and delicate and we should raise them to take men head on in their failings and weaknesses.

But is this really the attitude we want to put in our daughters toward men as they seek marriage?

Men Should Find Women Who Outperform Them to be Attractive?

In the conclusion of his article Maxwell makes the following statement:

We live in a time when women are outperforming men in many areas of professional and personal competency. And men have two choices: to find female strength captivatingly attractive, or to be insecure and intimidated. Real men love strong women, because God’s glory is beautiful, and “woman is the glory of man” (1 Corinthians 11:7).

Jesus, give men the grace to see the beauty of glorious female strength.”

 

By what standard is Maxwell saying women “are outperforming men in many areas of professional and personal competency”?

If Maxwell is referring to the fact that more women are in high school honor rolls than men, 70 percent of valedictorians are women and women now represent more than half of college and university students then he is right that women are “outperforming men”.

But does a high GPA in high school and a college degree equal “competency”?

Absolutely not. On the contrary, below are several facts that show men can be and often are more successful in their careers than women despite having lower GPA’s in high school and less representation among college graduates.

  1. Valedictorians rarely become rich and famous — and the average millionaire’s college GPA was 2.9.
  2. More than half of independent business owners do not have a college degree.
  3. New firms are overwhelmingly started by men. While women start 30% of businesses, men account for the remaining 70%. This is more than a 2 to 1 ratio.
  4. In high paid skill trade jobs like welders, carpenters, plumbers, electricians and HVAC techs women make up less than 5 percent of the workers in these industries . And a shortage of skill trade workers due to pushing young people into colleges is driving skill trade wages even higher

And here is something far more important than the facts I have just laid out.

It is absolutely true that God judges a large part of a man’s competency by his ability to make an income that can provide for his wife and children.   The reason for this is because man is meant to image God in being a provider to his wife and his family.

The Scriptures tell us God calls on men to provide for the needs of their wives as Christ does his Church:

“28 So ought men to love their wives as their own bodies. He that loveth his wife loveth himself. 29 For no man ever yet hated his own flesh; but nourisheth and cherisheth it, even as the Lord the church”

Ephesians 5:28-29 (KJV)

A lazy man who has no ambition or desire to work to the best of his ability to provide for his wife and family is not imaging God and is therefore not fulfilling one of the purposes for which God created him. Such a man truly is incompetent in the eyes of God.

However, from God’s perspective, a woman’s competency is not judged by her high school GPA, having a college degree or having a successful career outside her home.  Instead, the Bible tells us God judges a woman’s competency by her service to her husband, her children and the affairs of her home.

“I will therefore that the younger women marry, bear children, guide the house, give none occasion to the adversary to speak reproachfully.”

1 Timothy 5:14 (KJV) 

“4 That they may teach the young women to be sober, to love their husbands, to love their children, 5 To be discreet, chaste, keepers at home, good, obedient to their own husbands, that the word of God be not blasphemed.”

Titus 2:4-5 (KJV)

But having showed that Maxwell’s understanding of what makes men and women competent does not match God’s view of what makes each gender competent we will now address the “strength” question. Is there a strength that Christian men should find attractive in women?

The answer is yes.

Strength and honour are her clothing; and she shall rejoice in time to come.”

Proverbs 31:25 (KJV)

But what of strength are we talking about here? The strength that is mentioned is found toward the end of Proverbs 31:

“Favour is deceitful, and beauty is vain: but a woman that feareth the Lord, she shall be praised.”

Proverbs 31:30 (KJV)

The strength that men should find attractive in women is the strength of their faith which means they fear God and it shows in how they live their lives.   As men we should want to find a woman who loves God more than she loves us.  Because if she loves God more than she loves us, then she will always love us because God commands her to love us.

“That they may teach the young women to be sober, to love their husbands, to love their children”

Titus 2:4 (KJV)

But if a woman truly fears God, then she will also fear her husband as Ephesians 5:31 and I Peter 3:2 exhorts her to do.

“1 Likewise, ye wives, be in subjection to your own husbands; that, if any obey not the word, they also may without the word be won by the conversation of the wives; 2 While they behold your chaste conversation coupled with fear [Greek Phobos].”

I Peter 3:1-2 (KJV)

“Nevertheless let every one of you in particular so love his wife even as himself; and the wife see that she reverence [Greek Phobeo which has Phobos as its root] her husband.”

Ephesians 5:31 (KJV)

So, while there is certainly this special type of strength, a strength of character and a strength of faith which we as Christian men should admire and be attracted to in women the Bible also tells us there is a type of weakness in women that we as men are to honor and thus be attracted to as well.

“7 Likewise, ye husbands, dwell with them according to knowledge, giving honour unto the wife, as unto the weaker vessel, and as being heirs together of the grace of life; that your prayers be not hindered.”

I Peter 3:7 (KJV)

We are to honor the fact that God has put our wives in a weaker vessel, thus man’s vessel is stronger.  So, the question is why did God put women in weaker vessels?

The answer is found in two New Testament passages.  The first is seen below:

“7 For a man indeed ought not to cover his head, forasmuch as he is the image and glory of God: but the woman is the glory of the man. 8 For the man is not of the woman: but the woman of the man. 9 Neither was the man created for the woman; but the woman for the man.”

I Corinthians 11:7-9 (KJV)

Do we see anything in the above passage about “the beauty of glorious female strength” as Maxwell earlier alluded to? The answer is absolutely NOT.  It tells us that man is “the image and glory of God, but the woman is the glory of the man”.  Nothing about her glory being her strength. So how does a woman bring a man glory? She brings both God and man glory by playing the role God designed her to play in his creation which is seen in the next New Testament passage:

22 Wives, submit yourselves unto your own husbands, as unto the Lord. 23 For the husband is the head of the wife, even as Christ is the head of the church: and he is the saviour of the body. 24 Therefore as the church is subject unto Christ, so let the wives be to their own husbands in every thing.

25 Husbands, love your wives, even as Christ also loved the church, and gave himself for it; 26 That he might sanctify and cleanse it with the washing of water by the word, 27 That he might present it to himself a glorious church, not having spot, or wrinkle, or any such thing; but that it should be holy and without blemish.

28 So ought men to love their wives as their own bodies. He that loveth his wife loveth himself. 29 For no man ever yet hated his own flesh; but nourisheth and cherisheth it, even as the Lord the church”

Ephesians 5:22-29 (KJV)

Men should and do find women that embrace their weakness in comparison to men to be attractive. Women who realize that God meant for men to lead, provide for and protect them are actually intoxicating to a lot of men.

When a woman is ashamed of or denies being weaker than a man and denies her need for man’s leadership, provision and protection this makes her unattractive to the vast majority of men.

 Why Highly Intelligent and Educated Women are Not Attractive to Men

There is nothing wrong with a wise or prudent woman.  In fact, God says these things are good qualities in a wife in the following passages:

“She openeth her mouth with wisdom; and in her tongue is the law of kindness.”

Proverbs 31:26 (KJV)

Nothing wrong with a prudent woman (one who exercising good judgement):

“House and riches are the inheritance of fathers: and a prudent wife is from the Lord.”

Proverbs 19:14 (KJV)

But a woman does not need to have a bachelor’s degree in economics or theology or medicine to be a wise woman or prudent woman.  A woman with a high school or even a junior high education could turn out to be a very wise and prudent woman from a Biblical perspective.

The reasons why most men are not attracted to highly intelligent and educated women are twofold.

The first is that the Bible tells us that men are to teach and mold their wives:

And if they will learn any thing, let them ask their husbands at home: for it is a shame for women to speak in the church.”

1 Corinthians 14:35 (KJV)

“1 The word which came to Jeremiah from the Lord, saying, 2 Arise, and go down to the potter’s house, and there I will cause thee to hear my words. 3 Then I went down to the potter’s house, and, behold, he wrought a work on the wheels. 4 And the vessel that he made of clay was marred in the hand of the potter: so he made it again another vessel, as seemed good to the potter to make it. 5 Then the word of the Lord came to me, saying,

6 O house of Israel, cannot I do with you as this potter? saith the Lord. Behold, as the clay is in the potter’s hand, so are ye in mine hand, O house of Israel.”

Jeremiah 18:1-6 (KJV)

Most men want a wife that is teachable and moldable. A woman that will look up to them for both spiritual and worldly knowledge.  They want a woman to reverence them as the Scriptures call on women to do and they want their woman to respect them.  And a woman who thinks she knows more than her husband will have a much harder time respecting him, this is a simple fact of life.

And this desire in men is both God given. It is not a matter of sinful pride or of a man feeling intimidated by a woman.  It is a matter of him knowing what he wants in a woman and what his mission is in life.

The second reason highly intelligent and highly educated women are unattractive to most men is because intelligent and educated women, especially in our modern feminist culture, tend to be contentious with their husbands and they often shame their husbands.

“It is better to dwell in the wilderness, than with a contentious and an angry woman.”

Proverbs 21:19 (KJV)

“A foolish son is the calamity of his father: and the contentions of a wife are a continual dropping.”

Proverbs 19:13 (KJV)

“A virtuous woman is a crown to her husband: but she that maketh ashamed is as rottenness in his bones.”

Proverbs 12:4 (KJV)

Conclusion

The Scriptures tell us there are some types of weakness that we should glory in and honor as seen in the passage below.

“And he said unto me, My grace is sufficient for thee: for my strength is made perfect in weakness. Most gladly therefore will I rather glory in my infirmities, that the power of Christ may rest upon me.”

2 Corinthians 12:9 (KJV)

All of us as men and women of God should glory in the fact that God has designed us to need him for his leadership, provision and protection.  And women should see their God designed weakness in comparison to men and their need for men to lead them, provide for them and protect them as something to honor about themselves.  They should see the glorious part they have to play in being weaker in that they help to paint a beautiful picture of the relationship of Christ to his Church.

So, when women want to compete with men in the areas of physical strength, intelligence, leadership, provision or protection most men rightly find this type of behavior highly unattractive in women.  When a woman seeks to outperform her man in these areas or compete with him, she breaks the model of Christ of and the Church.

This is why if a woman truly wants do what God designed her to do and model the church in its relation to Christ then she should seek out a man that is more intelligent, wiser and educated than her and one who can teach her the Word of God.  One that can provide for her and protect her.

Real men are not attracted to women who will be contentious with them, shame them or rebuke them.

Real men are not attracted to women who think they must show they have no need of a man and can do it all on their own.

Real men do not seek out women that will compete with them in their ability to lead, provide for or protect their family.

Real men love women that have submissive, teachable, meek and quiet spirits.

Real men honor women who acknowledge their weakness in comparison to men and their need of a man’s strength, his teaching, his leadership, his intelligence, his provision and his protection.

Would Society Be Better If Girls Married as Soon as They Menstruated?

A Christian mother and regular reader of my blog asked “Would society be better if we returned to the standard that girls could marry as soon as they menstruated and were capable of having kids?” To ask such a question in America in the year 2019 seems patently absurd. Of course, society would NOT be better off if girls could marry as soon as they menstruated! Before we go further to address the obvious absurdity of this woman’s question here is the full email from her below.

Here is the complete email I received from a woman calling herself Rebekah:

“Long time reader, first time writer. First, I want to thank you for your trenchant insights, observations, and monologues. It’s great to find a man with such a passion for Christ and a traditional way of life. I’m a married mother with 3 daughters (12, 13, and 16) and (15) one son and my hubby and I are raising them to be good Christians and to abide by traditional gender roles.

I recently had a discussion with my husband about the expectation for marriage and we wondered, would society be better if we returned to the standard that girls could marry as soon as they menstruated and were capable of having kids? My two eldest daughters are certainly capable, and they are very motherly already.

What is your opinion?”

Why do such statements as the ones above evoke such a sense of righteous indignation from most of us in modern America and Western culture?  We will discuss these reasons next.

Why Modern Society Disapproves of the Pubescent Marriage of Women

Ancient and medieval historical records can attest to the following statement that was made in an article entitled “Child Marriage – Rationale, Historical Views, And Consequences” :

 “Child marriages involving only one marriage partner below the age of 18, usually the female, are also quite common. Throughout history till the 20th century, child marriages were the norm in most parts of the world. With the average life expectancy during such times being only 40 to 45 years of age, child marriages were the faster way to reproduce. Girls were usually married off as soon as they reached puberty or sometimes even prior to that.”

In the same article they mention in addition to shorter life expectancies that there were often economic reasons as well:

“Over the years, a large number of reasons have been suggested as triggers behind the practice of child marriage. Economic problems have been one of the primary factors that have forced parents to marry off their young girls. The system of dowry prevailing in many countries where parents of girls have to bestow hefty sums of money or expensive goods and ornaments to the in-laws’ families of their daughters have led to the consideration of the girl child as a burden in such households. However, the high demand of young girls in the marriage market have helped parents marry off their girl child to an older man, often receiving money in return, allowing them to overcome the burdens of dowry and even economically benefiting from the process.”

But in the same article we then find the reasons for our modern Western society’s disapproval of marriage for women of pubescent age:

“Child marriage is associated with scientifically established adverse effects to the young female child’s health. Pregnant girls below the age of 15 have a 5 to 7 times higher chance of dying during childbirth as compared to pregnant women in their twenties. Child mothers are also more susceptible to develop obstetric fistula, cervical cancer, sexually transmitted diseases and other health problems. Infant mortality rates are also 60% higher in case of children born of mothers who are below the age of 18 years. Child marriage usually deprives the female child of educational rights, leading to the loss of financial independence of the child in her future. Child brides are also susceptible to domestic violence, marital rapes and sexual abuse as they are not mature enough to protest and not independent enough to escape adverse situations in their conjugal life.”

So young mothers under 15 having 5 to 7 times higher of a chance of dying from their pregnancy should be enough for all us to oppose pubescent marriage for young girls, right?

And then what about the fact these poor young girls may be deprived of education rights which will lead to a loss of financial independence from their future husbands? And their higher susceptibility to tolerate future abuse from their future husbands?

Is this not an open and shut case against the marriage of pubescent age women?

Well before we can totally wrap up our conclusion, we need to tie up a few “loose ends”.

Putting Maternal and Infant Mortality Rates in Perspective

Two of the “loose ends” we need to tie up are maternal and infant mortality rates. Previously we were told one of the reasons we should oppose the marriage of pubescent age women is because women in this age group have higher chances of dying from child birth and their infants have a higher chance of dying after birth within the first year.

The maternal mortality rate (MMR) is the number of women who die each year at any stage of pregnancy.  According to the World Health Organization(WHO) 211 million women get pregnant each year.

The sad news for us as Christians and those who value human life is that 46 million of those pregnancies are ended by the murderous act of abortion.  That means 165 million women continue with their pregnancies.  Of those 165 million pregnancies, 123 million will be “successful”, meaning that the mother gives birth and the child survives.

Of the children that survive in these 123 million births, 2.51 million, or 2 percent, will die before reaching their first birthday (this is the global infant mortality rate).

About 302,950 women die each year worldwide from pregnancy.  That means women worldwide have a 0.2 percent chance dying from pregnancy related health problems or on the other hand they have a 99.8 percent chance of dying from pregnancy.

To put these numbers further in perspective, of those 302,950 women who die from pregnancy each year 99 percent of pregnancy related deaths occur in the developing world.  And even in sub-Saharan Africa, which has the highest MMR in the world, only 500 women out of 100,000 died from pregnancy related complications.

The key numbers to take away from this section on maternal and infant mortality rates are that in total 0.2 percent of women who get pregnant and do not murder their unborn children later die as a result of their pregnancies.  A total of 2 percent of infants worldwide will die before they reach their first birthday.   And statistically speaking the vast majority of these deaths that occur in both these categories occur in Africa. The saddest number of all these numbers is of course the worldwide purposeful murder of 22 percent of children in their mother’s womb by the act that modern civilization calls abortion.

The Societal Impact of Economic and Social Independence for Women

Another “loose end” we need to tie up has to do with women’s social and economic independence from men.  After all that is good thing, right?

For most of the history of mankind, with few exceptions, women were economically and socially tied to their fathers or their husbands and were considered the property of their fathers or husbands.  Women could not own property and if they did inherit property it would come under their husband’s authority upon marriage.  In divorce fathers retained full custody of the children.

The fact that women could not own property, could not easily divorce their husbands and when they did divorce, they had to leave without their children and without any property or income was a strong incentive for women to stay with their husbands.

This all changed in the mid-19th century with the rise of feminism.  It began with women suing in the courts for the right to own property as men did.  Then in the late 19th century the historic custom of fathers retaining full custody of their children was reversed and full custody was given to the mother.  Fathers did not gain back at least joint custody rights until almost a century later in 1960s.

Now the incentives that brought women to marriage to men, and kept women in marriage to men had been all but destroyed.

It was also during this time that women began to throw of the authority of their fathers in courting and began the new practice of “dating”.  Men and women entering marriage based on the historic principles of faith, duty, honor and economics gradually was replaced with men and women entering marriage simply for “love” – which was really just infatuation.

And since women had come to gain alimony, child support, and property rights there was little incentive for them to stay in marriage to a man once the infatuation wore off.   This caused divorce rates to sky rocket from 3 percent before the rise of feminism in the mid-19th century to 13 percent by the time woman’s suffrage was ratified in 1920 in the United States.

Anna Howard Shaw, one of the champions of first wave feminism made the following statement in the February 25th, 1915 edition of the New York Evening Post:

“I believe in woman suffrage, whether all women vote or no women vote; whether all women vote right or all women vote wrong; whether women will love their husbands after they vote or forsake them; whether they will neglect their children or never have any children at all.”

Anna Howard Shaw summed up the goals of the political feminists’ movements of the 19th and early 20th century.  The total liberation and independence of women from men no matter what the costs to society.  Country, marriage and motherhood and children could all be destroyed to meet their goals.  The only thing that mattered was women having complete and utter control of their lives.

And what cost did we pay as a nation? Well Anna Howard Shaw’s words came true.  Women gained the right to vote and even gained the right to force men to hire them for any positions they wanted.  And in 1973 they gained the right to murder their unborn children under the guise of total bodily autonomy.

The social and economic independence of women in America has directly led to rampant sexual immorality, the decline of marriage, over 60 million divorces and over 60 million abortions.

The Arguments Against the Marriage of Pubescent Women Are Faulty

Well it seems that in our effort to tie up loose ends regarding opposition to pubescent women marrying we have instead unraveled the entire ball of yarn.

Before I show how the arguments against pubescent women marrying are faulty, I want to explain some terminology I have been using.  The way we label something or someone can very much affect how we view that something or someone.  For instance, those of us who oppose abortion as a right for women call ourselves “prolife” while those who believe abortion is a right for women call themselves “prochoice”.   Prolife advocates such as myself call the child a “baby” from the moment it is conceived while Prochoice advocates will refer to the child based on his or her biological stages of development with such words as “zigote” or “embryo”  or “fetus” in an attempt to dehumanize the human being growing inside his or her mother’s womb.

In the same way when having this argument about the age of marriage for women those who oppose marriage for women before the age of 18 will call all marriage before the age of 18 “Child Marriage”.  But is 16 or 17-year-old female or male human being for that matter, a child? The answer biologically speaking is no.

Human beings go through a transition phase from child to adult and this transition phase is called puberty.  Children are human beings in the prepubescent stage of development.  Adolescents are human beings that are at some stage of puberty. When the changes of puberty are complete the human adolescent becomes a human adult.  Girls typically start puberty around the age of 11 while some start as early as 9 or 10 and they typically complete puberty by the age of 14. Boys start a little later than girls typically around the age of 12 and they finish puberty around the age of 16 or 17.

Those who say a female human being who has experienced the major changes of puberty which are the development of breasts, pubic hair and the start of menstruation is a child are stating a biological falsehood.  Such a female human being is no longer a child (prepubescent human being), but rather she is either an adolescent (pubescent human being) or an adult (postpubescent human being).

This is why I have consistently referred to this argument as one being about the “the marriage of pubescent women” because a female human being who has experienced the changes of puberty is no longer a child.

When we acknowledge the fact that worldwide a total of 0.2 percent of women die from pregnancy related deaths, and that includes pubescent mothers, then the even if they represent a higher proportion of that 0.2 percent it does not make a strong case against pubescent women marrying.  Instead we can respond with that fact that at least 99.8 percent of pubescent women worldwide will survive their pregnancies.

When we acknowledge the fact that only 2 percent of all infants worldwide die in the first year of their life and even if children from pubescent mothers make up more of that 2 percent than children from postpubescent women, we can rightly say pubescent mothers have at least a 98 percent chance of their children surviving their first year of life.  A difference somewhere within the 2 percent range between two groups of women having their children survive is not a strong argument against pubescent women marrying.

Some may respond that these are numbers that mix the developed world and undeveloped worlds.  But let me remind you of the WHO numbers which stated even in sub-Saharan Africa, which has the highest MMR in the world, only 500 women out of 100,000 died from pregnancy related complications in a given year over the last decade.

Then we come to other social reasons for opposition to marriage for pubescent women.

One of those reasons is that these pubescent women will have a “the loss of financial independence” from their husbands most likely because they do not finish high school and the college and get careers before marrying.

But based on the stats I just showed which correlate the granting of economic rights to women with the destruction of marriage by disincentivizing women to seek and stay in marriage to men is “the loss of financial independence” for women a bad thing? The answer if we believe that lasting marriages form the bedrock of a stable civilization must be NO.

And finally, what about the assertion that pubescent brides are more “susceptible to domestic violence, marital rapes and sexual abuse as they are not mature enough to protest and not independent enough to escape adverse situations in their conjugal life”? Is this a strong enough argument on its own for us to oppose pubescent women marrying?

Are there some men that truly do abuse their wives, whether they enter marriage as pubescent women or as postpubescent women? Absolutely.  But again, we must put things in perspective.  Just as we cannot toss out women getting pregnant because a tiny fraction of women may die from pregnancy so to, we cannot throw out marriage for pubescent women because of the sad fact that a higher fraction of a tiny percentage of pubescent women will be truly abused.

Now that I have shown the arguments against pubescent women marrying to be faulty and weak, we will now present strong arguments for the marriage of pubescent women.

Why We Should Support the Practice of Pubescent Marriage

I have previously shown from a biological perspective it is incorrect to refer to a human being that is going through puberty or one that has finished puberty as a child.  Therefore, it is utterly wrong to label it as “Child marriage” when a pubescent woman enters marriage.

Before the last century human societies recognized three primary social classes of human beings.  Men, Women and Children. Once children entered puberty, they were basically considered either men or women.  The concept of a “teenager” is a more recent invention over the last century.

Boys were considered men around the ages of 12 to 13 and this is why it was the norm for these young men to begin their trade in their early teen years so they could save their money, buy their own land and build a home.  Once they did this, usually by their late teens or early 20s, they would seek out a wife for marriage. For girls, as soon as they developed breasts and began menstruating, they were considered women and ready for marriage and child bearing.

Many will argue that just because a young woman is biologically ready for marriage and child bearing, does not mean she is mature enough mentally for marriage and child bearing.

So how do we answer the question of when a person is ready for marriage? Is it by looking to how civilizations have done things in the past? Is it by looking to current studies?

The answer, first and foremost for us as Christians, is to look to the Word of God.

“But if any man think that he behaveth himself uncomely toward his virgin, if she pass the flower of her age, and need so require, let him do what he will, he sinneth not: let them marry.”

1 Corinthians 7:36 (KJV)

The phrase “the flower of her age” refers to when a woman has her period.  The Apostle Paul is telling us here that the minimum of age of marriage is when a woman has her first period.

However, we must take the complete witness of the Scriptures together to determine when is the acceptable “time of love” for a young woman – as in marriage and sex.

“7 I have caused thee to multiply as the bud of the field, and thou hast increased and waxen great, and thou art come to excellent ornaments: thy breasts are fashioned, and thine hair is grown, whereas thou wast naked and bare.

8 Now when I passed by thee, and looked upon thee, behold, thy time was the time of love; and I spread my skirt over thee, and covered thy nakedness: yea, I sware unto thee, and entered into a covenant with thee, saith the Lord God, and thou becamest mine.”

Ezekiel 16:7-8 (KJV)

So, it is not until a young girl demonstrates all the signs of puberty, the growth of breasts, pubic hair and having a period that she is ready for marriage.  With most young women, their first period comes after the development of their breasts and pubic hair while in some rare cases the period may come first.  But the Scriptures show us that all three of these elements are required.

In fact, in another Scripture we read that if a woman was completely flat chested and had no breasts, she would have a difficult time marrying (even if she had her first period):

“We have a little sister, and she hath no breasts: what shall we do for our sister in the day when she shall be spoken for?”

Song of Solomon 8:8 (KJV)

The point here is that God tells us when a woman develops breasts, grows pubic hair and has her period she is ready for marriage by God’s law.

But we must also recognize that God gives a father discretion as to when his daughter is ready for marriage:

“Take ye wives, and beget sons and daughters; and take wives for your sons, and give your daughters to husbands, that they may bear sons and daughters; that ye may be increased there, and not diminished.”

Jeremiah 29:6 (KJV)

“16 And if a man entice a maid that is not betrothed, and lie with her, he shall surely endow her to be his wife. 17 If her father utterly refuse to give her unto him, he shall pay money according to the dowry of virgins.”

Exodus 22:16-17 (KJV)

The passages above show us that fathers have the responsibility to prepare their daughters for marriage and be looking for suitable husbands for their daughters while at the same time they have the right of refusal for their daughter for marriage as well.

Early Teen Women Are Very Fertile

Carolyn Butler wrote an article entitled “Ovaries have not adjusted to many women’s decision to delay having children” for the Washington Post back in 2010.  In that article she stated the following inconvenient biological facts for women:

The biological reality that female fertility peaks in the teens and early 20s can be difficult for many American women to swallow, as they delay childbirth further every year, according to the National Center for Health Statistics. In the District, the average age of initial childbirth was 26.5 years in 2006, up 5.5 years since 1970, the highest jump in the country…

While we may not be mature enough to conceive at a young age, nor should we, that is still when the body is most adept at conception and carrying a baby,” says Claire Whelan, program director of the American Fertility Association. “Our biological clock has not kept pace with our ability to prolong our life spans.” Stillman agrees, pointing out that research about advanced maternal age and motherhood today is clear: The older you get, the more difficult it is to get pregnant and the higher the chance of miscarriage, pregnancy problems such as gestational diabetes and hypertension, and chromosomal abnormalities such as Down syndrome, among other concerns…

“Society has changed, ” says Stillman, “but the ovaries will take another million years or two to catch up to that.””

Notice how she has to preface her acknowledgement of the biological reality of when women are “most adept at conception and carrying a baby” with her value judgment that “While we may not be mature enough to conceive at a young age, nor should we”.

As Christians we know that the Bible says in Genesis 1:27 that “male and female created he them”.  And we know God is not going to change a woman’s ovaries to match our societal changes.

Instead our society must turn back to God so that our society matches the way he designed us as males and females both physiologically and psychologically. And the way we begin that change is in one Christian home at time.

Early Teen Women Are More Moldable

In the Scriptures we read the following passage from the Book of Jeremiah:

“1 The word which came to Jeremiah from the Lord, saying,

2 Arise, and go down to the potter’s house, and there I will cause thee to hear my words. 3 Then I went down to the potter’s house, and, behold, he wrought a work on the wheels. 4 And the vessel that he made of clay was marred in the hand of the potter: so he made it again another vessel, as seemed good to the potter to make it.

5 Then the word of the Lord came to me, saying, 6 O house of Israel, cannot I do with you as this potter? saith the Lord. Behold, as the clay is in the potter’s hand, so are ye in mine hand, O house of Israel.”

Jeremiah 18:1-6 (KJV)

In the above passage God is speaking to Israel as his wife.  The phrase “O house of Israel” is used in other passages like this one below when God refers to Israel as his wife and he as her husband:

“Surely as a wife treacherously departeth from her husband, so have ye dealt treacherously with me, O house of Israel, saith the Lord.”

Jeremiah 3:20 (KJV)

Just as God sought to mold his wife Israel to be the person, he wanted her to be, so to for a marriage to be successful a woman must be very moldable just like clay in the hands of a potter.

When women are in their early teens, they typically are more moldable but as they get older into their late teens and especially early 20s, they become much harder to mold or change in their person and habits.

And make no mistake this is EXACTLY why most people today oppose women marrying very young because they know they are so impressionable or moldable at that age.  They don’t want men being able to mold young women so they want to delay marriage as a long as possible pushing it into the early and mid-20s.

Christians who follow this false philosophy that young women need “find themselves” and “be their own person” before marriage are going against God’s design.

Remember that God says marriage is a picture of Christ and the Church.  Does Christ mold his church? You bet he does.  And he tells men to love their wives as he does:

“25 Husbands, love your wives, even as Christ also loved the church, and gave himself for it; 26 That he might sanctify and cleanse it with the washing of water by the word, 27 That he might present it to himself a glorious church, not having spot, or wrinkle, or any such thing; but that it should be holy and without blemish.”

Ephesians 5:25-27 (KJV)

We are often told today that if a man attempts to mold or change his wife’s behavior at all that he is “controlling” and this bad.  We are told that if a man truly loves his wife, he won’t try to change anything about her.

Well I can tell you based on the authority of the Scriptures above that if a man does not attempt to mold and shape his wife to present her to himself and to God as a glorious wife in the same way Christ does his church then he is not loving his wife as Christ loves the church.

And yes, it takes a sacrifice on our part as men and courage on our part as men to “rebuke and chasten” (Revelation 3:19) our wives as Christ does his churches. But when done in the correct spirit, such rebuke and chastening by husbands is called “love”.

Conclusion

Rebekah so here is the answer to your question – “Would society be better if we returned to the standard that girls could marry as soon as they menstruated and were capable of having kids?”

The answer first from the Bible is “YES”.  But the like many other times we can see how God’s design plays out when we follow it and also when we disobey it.  No one can argue with the cold hard facts that giving women independence from men in general and their fathers and husbands in particular has been good for the institution of marriage which God designed.

By taking away women’s dependence on men we have allowed women to dominate marriage and our society.  Society is now ordered around how people feel rather than duty to God, family and country.

And the invention of the “teenager” as an extension of childhood has not been good for our society.  It has led to rampant immorality and a complete lack of responsibility among our young people today.

I don’t think you were actually asking if your husband could do this but just if society would be better if we all turned back to this custom of marriage for young women.

However, if your daughters have demonstrated the signs God says that mark “the time of love” for a woman in that they have developed breasts, pubic hair and have begun menstruating and if your husband feels they are mature enough and ready for marriage there would be no sin in allowing them to marry.

Believe it or not there are still 15 states that allow marriage below the age of 14:

 California
 Colorado
 Idaho
 Louisiana
 Maine
 Massachusetts
 Michigan
 Mississippi
 Nevada
 New Mexico
 Oklahoma
 Pennsylvania
 Washington
 West Virginia
 Wyoming

Also, several states allow 14, and 15-year old people to marry as well.

You can find the complete list of marriage by age by state here:

https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Age_of_marriage_in_the_United_States

Answering the Scoffers

One of my favorite scoffers, Suzanne Titkemeyer, wrote a piece the other day about my review of the Handmaids Tale.   I always chuckle a little when I read her stuff.

I will cover just a few areas that I think apply to this article in regards to the age of marriage.

Suzanne wrote:

“Why is it always these creeps, like Vaughn Ohlman,imaging young burgeoning breasts and periods as a marker for readiness? Notice that none of them view young boys of that age as ready for marriage. When they talk of men marrying it’s always men over the age of 21, while saddling them with a much too young girl.”

Suzanne, it is not me imaging breasts and periods as a marker for readiness, but rather the word of God which clearly states it as I showed above from Ezekiel 16:7-8 and 1 Corinthians 7:36.  You may reject the Bible but it is my basis for truth.

And before I knew and understood these Scriptures and studied the history of the world, biology and marriage I probably would have agreed with you that early teens is too young for marriage for women.  But back then I would have been going by what you are – my feelings and my culture. Instead of looking at marriage first through the lenses of the Bible, then history and biology.  All of which support young marriage for women.

Also, on your view of boys.  I don’t think they have to be over 21, although I think in most cases it would be wiser for them to wait.  Why? Because they have to lead a woman and their family and they have to be able to provide for and protect their family.  Especially on the provision front, for most young men it takes well into their early or mid-20s until they are ready to provide for a family.   My 19-year-old son who is plumber is an exception.  He makes over 60 K a year and could support a family.  But he has to get some other things in line first.

I know you struggle with this concept, but young men and young women are different. They are designed by God for different roles.  A young woman does not have to lead a home or provide for one.  She simply has to manage it, therefore she can marry much younger than a man.  Besides it is a biological fact as I showed above the early teens to the early 20s are “when the body is most adept at conception and carrying a baby”.  I also showed that studies arguing for higher pregnancy related deaths or other health problems are using statistically insignificant differences between pubescent mothers and postpubescent  mothers.

Suzanne wrote:

“In the United States this age can come at a very young time in a girl’s life. Menstruation ages have dropped, meaning what Larry is proposing here is that girls as young as 9 could be married.”

No not really.  I have said on multiple occasions that I like the Jewish rule of minimum age of 12.  The truth is that is extremely rare for a 9-year-old to have a period but then you are leaving out several other key factors in order to build your straw-man argument.  I said the minimum age of marriage requires ALL of the following things – not just a girl having her period. She must have developed breasts, pubic hair, had a period AND her father must determine she is ready.

Suzanne wrote:

“My own cycle started at 11 years old, and I can tell you I was nowhere near ready to marry. I was still playing with my Barbies, riding my horse, going to Camp Fire Girls meetings, and giggling over how cute Donny Osmond was. My only adult actions and responsibilities revolved around caring for my horse.

Little girls should be free to ride their horses, or play with their dolls and coloring books, not forced into lifetime relationships and sex.  We’ve talked about this so much here that I’m not even going to cite the statistics again that show how early marriage harms girls in every way, physically, emotionally, financially.”

Do you know why you were no nowhere near ready to marry at age 11 including manage a home and take care of children? Because you were raised in a culture that has vastly extended childhood far beyond what cultures in the past did.  If you were raised in pre-modern times, especially medieval or ancient times you absolutely would have been preparing for marriage at 11 and most likely be married by 12 or 13.

You see that is one of the many differences between your world view and mine.  You believe the purpose of little girls and by extension women is to live for themselves.  Have fun and do whatever makes you happy (at a particular moment, because we know that changes every five minutes).

But other people who believe the Bible is the inerrant Word of God, such as myself, believe we were put here for more than riding horses and playing with toys.  We believe life is about duty and honor and serving God.  Sure, we can have happiness along the way, but if that is our central focus, we will not serve God.

And speaking of happiness.  We understand a truth that utterly escapes most secularists and you as well.  We understand that happiness is not simply a feeling, but it is also a choice.  We can choose to be happy in whatever circumstances life brings us.  This is special kind of joy that few people know or understand. We can choose to let God and his Word lead our hearts, instead of letting our hearts lead us.

I pray one day you will come to know these truths and accept Christ and his Word as they are and not as you would have them be.

 

Does the Bible Say It is Ok to Murder Women?

“Genesis 9:6 says it is wrong to shed man’s blood because God made man in his image.  But 1 Corinthians 11:7 says only males are the image of God.  Does that mean the Bible is saying it is ok to murder women?”. This was a question I recently received from a reader calling himself Jacob.

Below is Jacobs’s complete email.

“BGR,

I have read what I think are all of your writings on the image of God in man.  I was hoping you could help clarify some things the Bible says about the image of God.

I was always taught growing up in church that Genesis 9:6 teaches us the very foundation for the value of all human life (both men and women) comes from the fact that they are made in the image of God.

Genesis 9:6 says it is wrong to shed man’s blood because God made man in his image.  But 1 Corinthians 11:7 says only males are the image of God.  Does that mean the Bible is saying it is ok to murder women? Please do not misunderstand me.  This is not a trick question.  I do not believe it is ok to kill women but I am very confused by what seems to be a contradiction between Genesis 9:6 and 1 Corinthians 11:7.

James 3:9 has a similar statement to Genesis 9:6 but instead of it talking about murder, it talks about not cursing men because they are made after the “similitude of God”.  So, the same rhetorical question would apply, since only men are made in the image of God is ok to curse women?

What about when it says in 2 Corinthians 4:4 “Christ who is the image of God” and in Hebrews 1:3 that Christ is “the express image of his person”?  What is the difference between Christ being the image of God and the express image of his person and man being the image of God?

Thank you for your time.

Jacob”

I am actually very grateful for Jacob’s email because I have been meaning to write on Genesis 9:6 and how it harmonizes with I Corinthians 11:7 and this pushed me to finally write on this subject.

What is God teaching us in Genesis 9:6?

Genesis 9:6 teaches us that mankind, both male and female, were made in the image of God.  This is where the value of human life begins and why God commanded the death penalty for those who shed man’s blood.

Some of my readers may be confused that I have just stated that men and women were both made in the image of God because I have previously stated in many of my articles that Genesis 1:27 does NOT show that both men and women were made in the image of God.  And I still stand by that interpretation.

“So God created man [Hebrew “adam”] in his own image, in the image of God created he him [Hebrew eth haa-‘adam”]; male and female created he them.”

Genesis 1:27 (KJV)

The Hebrew word “adam” can mean “man”, “mankind”, “men” or it can particularly refer to a certain man and sometimes Adam, the first man.  To understand the correct meaning of adam we must always look to the surrounding context in which it is used.

In the case of Genesis 1:27, when it says “God created adam in his image” this could have meant “mankind” if there were no qualifiers in the verse to indicate otherwise.  But there is a qualifier which is “eth haa-‘adam” which literally means “this same man” and is translated by the KJV as “he him”.  This means God was talking specifically about Adam.

The most literal rendering of Genesis 1:27 is as follows:

“So God created Adam in his own image, in the image of God created he this same man; male and female created he them.”

The phrase that follows “male and female created he them” does not indicate that woman was created in the image of God, it simply states that just as man was created by God, so too woman was created by God.

However, Genesis 9:6 is different than Genesis 1:27.  Genesis 9:6 is speaking of something which applies to all human beings and that subject is murder.  And it uses no qualifiers for handling the murder of women differently than that of men.  So, when Genesis 9:6 tells us the reason murder is wrong is because man was created in the image of God, we can rightly understand that “adam” in the Hebrew in this context is referring to “mankind” which includes both men and women.

And on the subject of killing, Genesis 9:6 is not talking about any killing of man by man, because God actually commands men to kill men at certain times as is seen in this very passage.  It is talking about unjustified killing.

And who determines if the taking of a human being’s life is justified or not? It is God.

The Bible shows us three major categories of justified killing where the person who does the killing is not considered sinning in the sight of God.  Exodus 22:2 shows us the God given right of self-defense.   Psalms 144:1 shows us that God teaches men how to fight and wage war in defense of their nations which is another God given right.  Numbers 35:27 teaches us that those who have the authority to execute the death penalty for various moral crimes God deems worthy of death are not held guilty for the blood they shed.

This is why abortion is considered an unjustified killing from a Biblical perspective but execution of a murderer on death row is considered a justified and righteous act.  The doctor who sheds the blood of the innocent child within the womb is held guilty by God because God does not allow the killing of someone simply because their life presents an inconvenience to their mother. However, the executioner who pulls the switch to kill the murderer is held righteous before God because God ordains this as part of his justice.

Understanding the Image of God in Christ, Man and Woman

Anyone who has read this blog for any amount of time will know that I heavily teach on the forgotten and unpopular Bible doctrine that man was created to be the image bearer of God and woman was not.  But some misunderstand this to mean that I am saying the Bible says women are not human or are less human than men.  And nothing could be further from the truth.  My prayer is that after reading what I show here from the Scriptures that you will understand that the life of a woman has equal value in the sight of God with that of a man.  All human life has equal value to God.

But we must teach another truth at the same.  While all human life, both males and females, has equal value to God this does not mean men and women were made for the same purpose. In this article I will demonstrate that these two truths stand side by side and they do not contradict.

Below is a table which will help to compare and contrast the similarities and differences between what the Bible says about the image of God in Christ, man and woman.

 

Male & Female Human Beings Male Human Beings Christ
Genesis 9:6 (KJV) I Corinthians 11:7 (KJV) Hebrews 1:3 (KJV)
“Whoso sheddeth man’s blood, by man shall his blood be shed: FOR IN THE IMAGE OF GOD MADE HE MAN.” “For a man indeed ought not to cover his head, forasmuch as HE IS THE IMAGE AND GLORY OF GOD: but the woman is the glory of the man.” “Who being the brightness of his glory, and THE EXPRESS IMAGE OF HIS PERSON, and upholding all things by the word of his power, when he had by himself purged our sins, sat down on the right hand of the Majesty on high”

 

As we mentioned previously, Genesis 9:6 shows us that the value of human life begins with the fact that all human beings, both men and women, were made in the image of God.  But then we read in 1 Corinthians 11:7 that the man (literally “the male” in the original Greek) is the image and glory of God but the woman is the glory of the man.  Finally, we read in Hebrews 1:3 that Jesus Christ in relation to God is “the express image of his person”.

So how do these three passages in the table above harmonize?  To answer this, I want to show you another illustration below:

In the table above are a list of characteristics.  Some align with God, while others align with man and still others align with women.  There is a highlighted characteristic type that intersects God, man and woman.  These characteristics of self-awareness, speech, creativity, morality and emotions are what separate man and woman from the animals and they reflect God’s image in all of us.  These common characteristics that are common to both God, man and woman are rightly called “Human”.

It is in this way that all human beings are equal in their humanity and all human beings bear the image of God.  It is because of these characteristics of God in all of us that all human life has value and it is why murder is wrong.

There are many Christians who would take offense at the table above and they teach and believe that God’s nature is only seen in the combination of masculine and feminine characteristics. Still others will maintain that some women can be aggressive, competitive and strong while some men can be cooperative and weak.

But this is why I very carefully used the word “characteristic” in the illustration above. The word “characteristic” can be used as both a noun and an adjective.   When used as a noun a “characteristic” describes something that is a distinguishing trait or something that is an integral part of something or someone.  When used as adjective it refers to something that is typical of something or someone.

I am using “characteristic” in both senses of the word in the illustration above.  While there are times that God can act in feminine ways this is not typical or characteristic of God’s behavior.  God’s behavior throughout the Scriptures is more typified by the masculine characteristics shown above and it is why God is always referred to in his person in the masculine sense throughout the Scriptures.

But now let’s go back to another question this raises.  How are man and woman both made in the image of God, yet man is the image bearer of God in a way woman is not?

To answer this question let’s look at Christ.  As we showed in the above table, the Scriptures tell us of Christ regarding his relation to God that he is “the express image of his person”.  And in Colossians 2:9 we read of Christ “For in him dwelleth all the fulness of the Godhead bodily”.  These passages are teaching us that Christ is the image of God in that he has all the characteristics of God because he is God.

Now let’s compare the image of God in Christ to the image of God in man. Does man have the image of God in him to the same degree that Christ does? The answer is no.  Man does not have any of God’s deity characteristics.

And now we can answer the central question of this article.  Does woman have the image of God in her to the same degree that man does? The answer according the Scriptures is no.  And this is why we read in the Scriptures that both men and women are MADE IN the image of God, yet it is only of men and Christ that we read that they are THE image of God.

Why Did God Make Woman Different Than Himself and Man?

As we can see while women share their common human characteristics with both God and men, they also have characteristics that are not typical of God or man.  Why did not God make women with these traits that are uncharacteristic of himself or man?

This all comes down to God’s purpose in creation.  Why did God give us the characteristics of our common humanity? The reason is different for men than for women.  God gave men their human characteristics along with their masculine characteristics for the purpose of imaging God and bringing him glory. God wanted to create a being that would be like him in every way except for his deity characteristics so that he could watch that being demonstrate his characteristics and thereby bring him glory.

But in order for that being, man, to fulfill his created purpose God needed to create another being.  He needed to create a being of a similar nature which could provide companionship.  But this being would also have to be created in a way that they would need the leadership, provision and protection of man.  So, God created woman as “the weaker vessel” (1 Peter 3:7) for man so that he could fulfill his created purpose to image God.

Conclusion

Here is the summary of what the Scriptures teach about the image of God in man and woman and the differences between the two.

While male human beings do not have all the characteristics of God in that they lack God’s deity characteristics there is nothing that is characteristic of male human beings that is not also characteristic of God.  The same cannot be said for female human beings.  There are many traits that are characteristic of female human beings that are not characteristic of God.

And this is why we can rightly say based upon the Scriptures that our value as human beings, both men and woman, comes from the fact that we were both made in the image of God in our shared human characteristics yet men in their masculine characteristics are the image of God in a way that women are not.

Why Christian Women Should Wear Head Coverings

The photo above features a veil like the one that I bought for my daughter a while back from the site VeilsByLily.com. So the question is why did I purchase this veil for my daughter? Was it simply a fashion accessory? Or something more?

For all of Christian history up until the 1960s with the advent of second wave feminism women wore some type of head covering whenever they went to church for worship. The practice of women wearing head coverings is not simply a Christian tradition, but it is actually commanded in the Bible in 1 Corinthians 11:4-5(KJV):
“4 Every man praying or prophesying, having his head covered, dishonoureth his head. 5 But every woman that prayeth or prophesieth with her head uncovered dishonoureth her head: for that is even all one as if she were shaven.”

Many Christians today argue that Christian women do not have to wear head coverings any more. And believe it or not, there were Christians even back during the Apostle’s time that were arguing against the requirement of women wearing head coverings as is seen in I Corinthians 11:16 (KJV):
“But if any man seem to be contentious, we have no such custom, neither the churches of God.”

And the great irony is that many Christians today have taken Paul’s rebuke of those who were arguing against women being required to wear head coverings and they attempt to use his rebuke to say women don’t have to wear head coverings! It really is enough to make your head explode if you let it.

In I Corinthians 11:2-16 Paul answers three very important questions about head coverings for women. He answers WHY women must wear head coverings, WHAT head coverings are, and WHEN head coverings should be worn.

Click here to listen to my 3 part podcast series “Why Women Should Wear Head Coverings”

WHY God Wants Women to Wear Head Coverings

Paul gives the reason why woman must wear head coverings as an introduction to the conversation on head coverings in I Corinthians 11:3 (KJV):
“But I would have you know, that the head of every man is Christ; and the head of the woman is the man; and the head of Christ is God.”

So, the reason women must wear head coverings is because “the head of the woman is the man”. Head here refers to man’s authority over woman.

Egalitarian Christians claim that “head” in verse 3 refers to man as the “source” of woman. The problem with that interpretation is it would then make God the father the source of Christ and that is heresy according to John 1:1-3 (KJV) which tells us the following:
“In the beginning was the Word, and the Word was with God, and the Word was God. 2 The same was in the beginning with God. 3 All things were made by him; and without him was not any thing made that was made.”

The context of I Corinthians 11:3 is not the source of man or woman, but rather the authority structure God has created.

But after showing the Egalitarian argument to be faulty, we must now address the Complementarian argument. Complementarians believe in male headship but they limit it to the home and the church. They do not believe male headship over women extends to all areas of society.

The problem for Complementarians is that nothing in the language of verse 3, or the entire discussion of male headship in I Corinthians limits the man’s headship to just the home and the church. It is a broad and sweeping statement of man’s headship over woman.

Is God the Father the head of Christ in all things? Is Christ the head of man in all things? How then can Complementarians claim that men are only the head of women in the home and in the church but not outside those two areas?

And then we must consider the practical implications of the Complementarian attempt to limit man’s headship over woman to just the home and the church. The Bible tells us in Ephesians 5:24 (KJV) “Therefore as the church is subject unto Christ, so let the wives be to their own husbands in every thing. So, this presents a problem for Complementarians who believe women may take authority over men as long as it outside the home or church.

Let’s take a man and his wife. His wife runs for mayor of their town and she wins. So that means if he were to go to a town hall meeting where his wife is presiding, she now becomes his authority in that sphere. But yet God calls her to submit to her husband in everything. That means in every part of her life. The only exception to her submission to him is the rule the Apostle Peter gave us in Acts 5:29 (KJV) that “We ought to obey God rather than men” if our earthly authority is violating God’s law in what they are asking us to do. The same would go for if his wife was his boss at work.

This is the conundrum the Complementarians run into when they attempt to limit the headship of man over woman to just the home and the church.

For a larger discussion of why women should not be in politics see my article “Does the Bible allow for a woman to be President of the United States?

But I Corinthians 11:3 is only one part of the Apostle Paul’s answer as to why women should wear head coverings. Later in this passage Paul actually dives into a deeper “WHY” question.

WHY is Man the Head of Woman

God does not always tell us why everything is the way it is. But sometimes he does tell us why some things are the way they are. And in this case of head coverings God caused Paul to fully explain why man is the head of woman in all areas of this life.

Paul writes the following statements just a few verses down in I Corinthians 11:7-10 (KJV) after telling us man is the head of woman and he now explains why man is the head of woman:
“7 For a man indeed ought not to cover his head, forasmuch as he is the image and glory of God: but the woman is the glory of the man. 8 For the man is not of the woman: but the woman of the man. 9 Neither was the man created for the woman; but the woman for the man. 10 For this cause ought the woman to have power on her head because of the angels.”

I can’t tell you how many times I have been in Complementarian churches’ where they basically take the attitude of “Well God had to put someone in charge, so he picked the man and we just have to accept that”. God did not flip a cosmic coin to decide if man was the head of woman or woman was the head of man. Man being the head of woman was God’s design before he ever created man or woman!

This passage I have just shown from I Corinthians 11:7-10 tells us why man is the head of woman.
Man is the head of woman because man is “the image and glory of God” and “neither was the man created for the woman; but the woman for the man”. This is a simple and yet profound truth that will change the direction of every man and woman that reads it if they will only accept it and apply it to their lives.

Man was created to image God by living out his attributes and thereby bring him glory. Woman was created by God for man to serve man and bring man glory and in doing so she serves God and brings him glory as well.

And it is “For this cause”, because man is God’s image and glory and because of that woman’s head, that woman ought “to have power on her head because of the angels”. The “power on her head” is the head covering Paul is talking about in this entire first half of I Corinthians 11.
When a woman wears a head covering, she is proclaiming to the world that she fully accepts God’s authority over her life and the fact that God has placed her under man’s headship in all areas of life whether that be in the home, the church or elsewhere. Such a woman who fully accepts what her head covering means would never seek to be in any position that would place in her in authority over a man.

Now that we have fully covered the Apostle Paul’s explanation of why women should wear head coverings, we will now dive into what the head covering is that he is referring to.

WHAT is the Head Covering for Women?

Paul gives his answer to what the head covering is in I Corinthians 11:5-6 (KJV)
“5 But every woman that prayeth or prophesieth with her head uncovered dishonoureth her head: for that is even all one as if she were shaven. 6 For if the woman be not covered, let her also be shorn: but if it be a shame for a woman to be shorn or shaven, let her be covered.”

The English word “uncovered” in verse 5 and the phrase “not covered” find their root in the negative form of the Greek word “Kalupto” which means “to hide or to veil”. So, Paul is saying when woman does not veil her head, she dishonors her head.

Paul goes on to use a cultural norm that the Corinthians would understand. For a woman to have her hair cut short (shorn) or have her head shaved would be for her to dishonor herself. Paul then goes on to explain where this cultural norm originated in I Corinthians 11:13-15 (KJV):
“13 Judge in yourselves: is it comely that a woman pray unto God uncovered? 14 Doth not even nature itself teach you, that, if a man have long hair, it is a shame unto him? 15 But if a woman have long hair, it is a glory to her: for her hair is given her for a covering.”

Man did not invent this cultural norm, but rather it came from the human nature God designed in man and woman. God put this knowledge into our original nature as human beings to know that long hair on a man is a disgrace, but long hair on a woman is her glory.

Paul talks about this original human nature, our original programming, which tells us right from wrong in Romans 2:14 (KJV):
“For when the Gentiles, which have not the law, do by nature the things contained in the law, these, having not the law, are a law unto themselves”

In the garden of Eden God created Adam with a perfect male human nature and he created Eve with a perfect female human nature. These nature’s had God’s law directly written into them. Their original human natures told them things like assault, murder and theft were wrong. Adam’s original masculine human nature instinctually told him he needed to lead, protect and provide for his wife. Eve’s original feminine human nature told her she needed to submit to and serve Adam as his subordinate helper.

But both Adam and Eve did not listen to the perfect natures God gave them which told them what to do – instead they went against the perfect human natures they were given and they sinned against God.

From that point forward both human natures, the masculine and feminine, became corrupted by sin. Yet even in its corruption, our human nature can still tell us when something is right or wrong according to God’s law.
Now before anyone misunderstands me – I am NOT saying our human natures (either masculine or feminine) are always right and that we can always trust them.

To know where our natures are right and where they are corrupt, we must look to our owner’s manual which is the Word of God. It tells us where our nature is wrong and has been corrupted by sin and where our nature is functioning as God designed it to.

The same thing goes for our culture. If what our culture condemns matches up with what God condemns and if what our culture promotes matches up with what God promotes then we can follow those things in our culture. But if what our culture condemns God approves and what our culture approves God condemns then we must disregard what our culture teaches in that area.

A Woman’s Long Hair is NOT the Covering

The woman’s long hair is “a covering” but it is not THE covering God requires when women pray or prophesy. Let’s apply the “long hair” argument to the passage we have already looked at below:
“5 But every woman that prayeth or prophesieth without long hair dishonoureth her head: for that is even all one as if she were shaven. 6 For if the woman has not long hair, let her also be shorn: but if it be a shame for a woman to be shorn or shaven, let her have long hair.”

Now let’s apply some basic logic.

A woman without long hair = a woman shorn (with short hair) or a woman with a shaved head.

Now let’s apply this to the passage again:
“5 But every woman that prayeth or prophesieth with her head shaven dishonoureth her head: for that is even all one as if she were shaven. 6 For if the woman be shorn, let her also be shorn: but if it be a shame for a woman to be shorn or shaven, let her have long hair.”

You can’t make a comparison by comparing something to itself. It is like saying “Eating ghost peppers is like eating ghost peppers”. But rather if you wanted to tell someone what eating ghost peppers is like, you might say “Eating ghost peppers is like putting gasoline in your mouth and lighting it on fire”. The comparison of lighting gasoline in your mouth might be a little exaggerated – but it communicates the point of what it is like when you eat ghost peppers.
This is why we can confidently conclude that the veil that Paul exhorts women to wear while praying and prophesying is NOT a woman’s long hair. Paul is speaking of two coverings. One is the natural covering (veil) God wants women to wear which is their long hair and the second is the additional physical covering (veil) God wants women to wear over their natural covering when they are praying or prophesying.

Now that we have discussed why God wants women to wear a head covering and we have shown it to be a separate veil in additional to their natural veil we will now show according the Bible when women are to wear this second veil as a spiritual symbol.

WHEN Does God Want Women to Wear a Head Covering?

Before we give the answer as to when women should wear head coverings we need to have a discussion about prophesy since this along with prayer is a central theme of this passage on head coverings.

The English word prophesieth is a translation of the Greek word “Propheteuo”.

Propheteuo is one of those words that you really have to pay attention to the context it is used in. In certain contexts, it refers to someone supernaturally foretelling the future like Christ did in the Gospels or the Apostle John did in the book of Revelation and like the Apostle John these prophets were also ordained by God to speak and write his Word.
But in other contexts, propheteuo simply refers to someone teaching, reproving or admonishing others based on the truths of God’s Word.

The Apostle Peter spoke of the prophecy of Joel being fulfilled on the day of Pentecost when the Holy Spirit was first poured out on Christians in Acts 1:16-18 (KJV):
“16 But this is that which was spoken by the prophet Joel;
17 And it shall come to pass in the last days, saith God, I will pour out of my Spirit upon all flesh: and your sons and your daughters shall prophesy, and your young men shall see visions, and your old men shall dream dreams: 18 And on my servants and on my handmaidens I will pour out in those days of my Spirit; and they shall prophesy”

Peter is addressing both types of prophesy in this one statement. He talks about the young men seeing visions and old men dreaming dreams. That is exactly what happened to the Apostles and they wrote about the visions they had in the New Testament. But he also talks about “daughters” and “handmaidens” prophesying. So, what does he mean by this?

In I Corinthians 14:3 (KJV) we read the following statement about prophesy:
“But he that prophesieth speaketh unto men to edification, and exhortation, and comfort.”

Before I explain this passage, I want to make two points. The first thing I want to say is that I love the KJV because even though it has a very old form of English, it is often the most literal rendering of the original text. But like any other translation of the original texts, it sometimes is either confusing because of the old English or it is not as precise as it should be. The second thing I want to say is that I can’t stand all these gender-neutral translations of the Bible. The fact is that the Bible is written in a very masculine tone because God’s nature is represented by the masculine human nature and translations should be faithful to that tone.

But sometimes in the Bible the language used is gender neutral and I Corinthians 14:3 is actually one those passages.

First, where the King James version says “he” as in “he that prophesieth” the Greek Word which is “ho” is actually gender neutral and it would be more accurately translated as “the one”.

Secondly when the KJV refers to hearers of the prophesy it calls them “men” but that is not as precise as it should be when used together with the gender neutral “ho”. The Greek word that is translated as “men” is “Anthropos”. This word can be translated as “man”, “men”, “mankind” or as “people” or a “person” depending on the context it is used in. It is a less precise word than the Greek word “Aner” which is specifically used to refer to male human beings in the Bible or to “gune” which specifically refers to female human beings in the Bible.

With all that being said I believe in this rare case the NIV actually is actually closest to the original meaning with one minor correction:
“But the one who prophesies speaks to people for their strengthening, encouraging and comfort.”

Where I think the NIV is wrong is in their use of the word “strengthening” where the KJV and other translations like the NASB translate the word as “edification” which is a better translation of the Greek word “Oikodome”. Even Thayer’s Bible dictionary states that Oikodome which literally means “the act of building up” also is used metaphorically to mean edifying or edification. The Merriam-Webster dictionary definition of edify means to “to instruct and improve especially in moral and religious knowledge”.

So, what is I Corinthians 14:3 saying? It is saying that “the one” (man or woman) that prophesies speaks to people (men or women) using the Word of God to instruct them, exhort them and comfort them.

The next verse, I Corinthians 14:4 (KJV) actually mentions the church:
“He that speaketh in an unknown tongue edifieth himself; but he that prophesieth edifieth the church.”

Again we have the gender neutral “Ho” for which is translated as “He” and the gender neutral “Heautou” which can be translated as “himself, herself, itself or themselves” depending on the context it is used. And since it is used with the gender neutral “Ho” once again the NIV is the most accurate translation of this verse where it says:
Anyone who speaks in a tongue edifies themselves, but the one who prophesies edifies the church.”

And on this subject of prophecy I want to mention one more verse which is found in Acts 21:8-9 (KJV):
“8 And the next day we that were of Paul’s company departed, and came unto Caesarea: and we entered into the house of Philip the evangelist, which was one of the seven; and abode with him. 9 And the same man had four daughters, virgins, which did prophesy.”

So here is the point I have been building to with all these passages on prophesy. We who believe in the doctrines of Biblical gender roles cannot deny that God gifts some women with the gift of prophecy. And I do not mean the “foretelling of the future and writing God’s Word” kind of prophecy. I mean the kind of prophecy that edifies, exhorts and comforts people and edifies the church as the Scriptures say.

Acts 21:8-9 shows this to be true and the central passage we are talking about here – I Corinthians 11:5 which exhorts women when they prophesy to wear a head covering proves this to be true.
I know that many Christian wives have been led astray by false female prophets of God only to see their marriages destroyed. I have had many men write me emails testifying to this fact. Far too many. And it would be easy to say women can never prophesy in any form or venue because we are afraid of false teachings. But gentlemen let me remind you all that women don’t have a monopoly on being false prophets. There are many male false prophets out there today as there have always been.

The Scriptures tell us that God gifts some women with the gift of prophecy so the question then becomes where can they use this gift to edify, exhort and comfort?

Some would wrongly say because I Corinthians 14:4 (NIV) says “the one who prophesies edifies the church” that women can instruct and exhort men in the Church. But such an interpretation ignores clear prohibitions against women teaching men in the Church such this one found in 1 Timothy 2:11-12 (KJV):
“11 Let the woman learn in silence with all subjection. 12 But I suffer not a woman to teach, nor to usurp authority over the man, but to be in silence.”

And in the same chapter of I Corinthians that we have just mentioned with gender neutral language about people prophesying to the church we find this restriction on women once again in 1 Corinthians 14:34-35 (KJV):
“34 Let your women keep silence in the churches: for it is not permitted unto them to speak; but they are commanded to be under obedience as also saith the law. 35 And if they will learn any thing, let them ask their husbands at home: for it is a shame for women to speak in the church.”

So how do we explain this? We are told in the Scriptures that prophesy edifies, exhorts and comforts all people and it also edifies the church and we are told that God gives this gift to both men and women. He even tells women when the prophesy to wear a head covering. Yet he tells women to remain silent in the church and learn from their husbands at home.

The answer my friends is found in Titus 2:3-5 (KJV):
“3 The aged women likewise, that they be in behaviour as becometh holiness, not false accusers, not given to much wine, teachers of good things; 4 That they may teach the young women to be sober, to love their husbands, to love their children, 5 To be discreet, chaste, keepers at home, good, obedient to their own husbands, that the word of God be not blasphemed.”

When we combine the fact that Bible says some women have the gift of prophecy which includes edification, exhortation and comfort along with this passage we have a clear picture of God’s vision for women.
God gifts some women with the ability to be able to edify and exhort other WOMEN “to be sober, to love their husbands, to love their children, to be discreet, chaste, keepers at home, good, obedient to their own husbands” and to comfort them when they are in difficult situations.

Before I show you the final answer as to when a woman must wear a head covering according to the Scriptures, we need to understand one more point. When the Scriptures say “the one who prophesies edifies the church” this is not limited to a local church assembly of men and women together in a worship service.

The church, the body of Christ, is both universal and local. When you go down the street and see a physical church building and see Christians meeting there on Sunday mornings for worship that is a local manifestation of the body of Christ coming together for worship and instruction in the Word.

But then we have the universal body of Christ which includes all saints. There are many ministries which minister to the church on a universal level. A Christian radio show is an example of a ministry which ministers to the universal church. This blog ministry, BiblicalGenderRoles.com, is another example of a ministry which ministers to the universal church. And in this same way Christian women can have blogs which minister to the universal church and are specifically tailored toward women. Even on a local church level woman can have ladies Bible studies or ladies Sunday school classes where women with the gift of prophecy can exercise their gift within the bounds of God’s law.

But as I have said before on this blog – all ministries which are conducted by women, even by those women who have the gift of prophesy, must be done under the headship of man. If it is a single woman with no family that might mean she operates under the authority of the Pastor of her local church. If it is a woman with a Christian father and no husband then she operates under the spiritual authority of her father. And certainly, if a woman has a Christian husband then she operates her ministry to women under the spiritual authority of her husband.

And now we can finally answer the question of WHEN women are scripturally required to wear head coverings.

A woman should wear a head covering, a veil of some sort, during worship services because she certainly should be silently praying together with her local church during worship. Secondly, if a woman is prophesy to other women such as through a podcast or in person in a Sunday school class or a ladies Bible study, she also should wear a head covering.

Now prayer unlike prophesy, can occur within or totally outside any type of church ministry setting. But because the commands for women to wear head coverings for prayer are not qualified by a statement saying something like “in the church” or “the house of God” then it must therefore be treated as an absolute command for all occasions. See my note at the end of this article explaining my change or “sharpening” on this position about head coverings for prayer.

The “All Times” Argument

Before I conclude I wanted to address the “All Times” argument as to when Christian women should wear head coverings. There are some Christians like the Amish, Mennonites and Anabaptists and others outside those denominations that believe women are to wear head coverings at all times.

There argument is that the prayer Paul is referring to is not limited to that which occurs in the context of church ministries like worship services or other women’s ministries outside the worship service setting. And they point to 1 Thessalonians 5:17 (KJV) which exhorts all Christians to “Pray without ceasing” to say that since Christian women should be in a constant state of pray that they should always have their head coverings.

The Biblical command to “Pray without ceasing” is like the Biblical command for us as Christians to be “Not forsaking the assembling of ourselves together” in Hebrews 10:25 (KJV). In the same way the call to not forsake assembling within our local church bodies does not mean we must be at church 24 hours a day, 7 days a week so too the call to pray without ceasing does not mean we must pray 24 hours a day 7 days a week at all minutes of the day.

Taken together these commands are telling us not give on the regular practice of meeting together in our local churches or of praying. We as Christians should have regular habits of praying and going to church. This the command of the Scriptures.

Otherwise if we took “pray without ceasing” the way some of these groups have tried to portray it – we could never talk to anyone else because we would be constantly talking to God and if we applied that to forsaking not the assembling of ourselves in the church we would never leave the church building or stop praying. That is not God’s will for our Christian lives. God simply wants prayer and church attendance to be a regular habit for all Christians.

Conclusion

I hope this study has been a blessing to you, I know it was for me as I studied this out again. I have believed in women wearing head coverings within the context of church ministry for many years but God really fined tuned this for me as I studied his Word on this subject once again.

So, we answered here from the Scriptures the three important questions when it comes to Christian women wearing head coverings. We answered the why, the what and the when.

The reason why God wants a woman to wear a head covering is because it is a public acknowledgement by that woman that man is the image bearer of God and man has been designated by God as the head of woman in all areas of this life. It is a testimony to all the people who see her as well as the angels who are watching that she acknowledges the male headship that God has placed her under and she would never seek to take authority over a man.

What is the head covering which God requires when women pray or prophesy? It is the second veil which God requires women to cover their heads with when praying or prophesying. The first veil God requires women to have is the one he naturally gives them the ability to have – and that is their long hair.

When should women wear their head covering or a second veil? Any time a woman prays or prophesies including if she prophesies outside a local church setting like with a podcast or having a ladies Bible study group at home. And she should wear a head covering any time she prays even outside a ministry setting.

As I conclude I just want to give one more “why” answer.

Why did the church abandon the teaching that women should wear head coverings? Why have so many pastors and other Christian teachers and writers gone to great lengths to say it was a “temporary cultural requirement” Even if they agree it is still required, they make the argument I have shown to be logically false that the woman’s long hair is the only covering Paul was talking about.

The answer is that Christian men over the last century or so gradually abandoned their God given headship over the women in their lives. And this leadership vacuum allowed for a poisonous ideology called Feminism to form. And Feminism since its inception has decimated God’s institution of gender roles and marriage and it brought the divorce rate from 3 percent to 45 percent causing more than 60 million divorces. Feminist ideology has also led to the deaths of over 60 million babies in abortion.

Whether it is their wives, their daughters or the women under their ministries in their churches most Christian men have neglected their duty in this regard. They now seek to appease women in their churches or marriages. They are more concerned with making the women in their lives happy than pleasing God.

If you are a God fearing, Bible believing Christian man or woman I ask you to pray for the men around you that God will give them the strength and courage to lead the women in their lives even it that may cause some momentary or even long-term unhappiness for them. I also ask you to pray for the women in your lives that they will have the courage to take a stand and if they do not have the two head coverings God requires for women (long hair and a veil for church ministry) that they will make this right before God and start doing what is right.

Update 5/5/2018 – My Change or “Sharpening” On When Women Should Wear Head Coverings For Prayer

Since originally publishing this article the Lord has led me to make a change on my position on head coverings. And “change” might not be the right word, as that might imply to some a 180 degree turn, which is not the kind of change I am referring to. I think a better word might be “sharpen” as in God has led me to “sharpen” my position on women wearing head coverings.

Let me just say before I introduce this change that no Christian should ever think they have arrived and perfectly interpret or apply the Scriptures. The Scriptures tell us as much in the following passage:
“11 And he gave some, apostles; and some, prophets; and some, evangelists; and some, pastors and teachers; 12 For the perfecting of the saints, for the work of the ministry, for the edifying of the body of Christ: 13 Till we all come in the unity of the faith, and of the knowledge of the Son of God, unto a perfect man, unto the measure of the stature of the fulness of Christ”
Ephesians 4:11-13 (KJV)

We will never be perfect in this life in how we live or in our interpretations or understanding of the Word of God. But Christ gives us the Holy Spirit of God and also brothers and sisters in Christ to help us along the way. While we may never be perfect, or even perfectly unified as believers in our understanding of the Scriptures – we are to progressively strive for that each day of our lives.

This means we should always be willing to entertain the possibility that we can be wrong in either our interpretation or our application of the Scriptures. Sometimes the Holy Spirit can show us something all on our own but other times the Holy Spirit may use other Christians to show us his truths. It might be something our Pastor says in a sermon on Sunday. It might a something we hear from a preacher on a radio. It might be something we read from a Christian writer in a book or blog. And sometimes it might be from a comment that someone places on your blog.

The Scriptures tell us in Proverbs 27:17 that Iron sharpeneth iron; so a man sharpeneth the countenance of his friend” and that is what Tyler Bryant has done for me on this subject of women wearing head coverings.

For all of my adult life I have believed in women wearing head coverings for worship since I attended a Plymouth Brethren church with my parents when I was a teenager for about a year before we returned to a Baptist church. My mother for a time started wearing a head covering while we attend that church and my father showed me from I Corinthians 11 why the church believed women should wear head coverings.

I have since that time held the position that since prophesy can only be exercised in a church ministry setting (either within the local church or in some parachurch or universal church capacity) that the absoluteness of the statement was applying only to prophesy and the prayer portion was pertaining to that which was done with prophecy which is done in church ministry.

Tyler is 100 percent sure that the prayer mentioned is NOT limited to that which is done within the context of church ministry (either in the local church or outside as a universal church ministry).

The struggle I have had since Tyler’s comments is that I am not 100 percent sure that the prayer mentioned IS limited to just that which is done in the context of church ministry (like alongside of prophesy). But before I give my change or “sharpening” on this subject of women wearing head coverings for prayer I want to give a little background on qualifications about things done “in the church” which Tyler alluded to in his comments.

There are some passages like I Corinthians 14:34-35’s admonition for women to be silent that specifically qualify the statement with “in the church” so I can 100 percent say this is not applying to outside of church ministries. And then I further 100 percent know it is talking about mixed gender settings because women are exhorted to teach other women and we are told women can prophesy to other women (Acts 2:17 ,1 Corinthians 14:3-4 & Titus 2:3-5).

There are other statements like this one from 1 Timothy 3:15 which qualify all of chapter three that came before it as well as half of chapter 2:
“14 These things write I unto thee, hoping to come unto thee shortly: 15 But if I tarry long, that thou mayest know how thou oughtest to behave thyself in the house of God, which is the church of the living God, the pillar and ground of the truth.”

In this passage above Paul is end capping his discussion on general behavior rules within the assembled church as well as the qualifications for church officers – he started this discussion in the previous chapter in I Timothy 2:7 where restates his authority as an Apostle of Christ and then he starts telling men and women how to conduct themselves within the assembled church. He mentions a very similar statement about women being silent in verses 11-12 and this is qualified later by his statement that this is “how thou oughtest to behave thyself in the house of God”.

My point I am trying to make is that sometimes the qualification does not occur right alongside the command but it occurs later in the discussion as an end cap to many commands. But with this case of women wearing head coverings while praying – there is no qualifying endcap anywhere related to the discussion of head coverings.

I Corinthians 11 is an interesting chapter because Paul begins with speaking about prophecy which is a church ministry, but it is one that can be exercised toward the church either on a local church level or universal church level and then he switches gears and begins speaking of a church ministry, that of communion, which can ONLY occur within the local church with them all coming together in I Corinthians 11:17-18 (KJV):
“17 Now in this that I declare unto you I praise you not, that ye come together not for the better, but for the worse. 18 For first of all, when ye come together in the church, I hear that there be divisions among you; and I partly believe it.”

So here is my change or “sharpening”

Since the discussion of head coverings for prayer is not qualified with the command itself like I Corinthians 14:34-35 and it also does not qualify the command about head coverings for prayer as part of a list of many commands like 1 Timothy 3:15 then we cannot know with a 100 percent degree of confidence that it is only speaking of prayers done in the context of church ministry. Therefore, I believe in the absence of either of these types of qualifications we must regard the command for women to wear head coverings for prayer as absolute. This means women should wear head coverings for prayer whether it is during a a church ministry or even in a private setting outside of church ministries.

The Root Cause of Antinatalism in America

Within the span of just a few days we have had a congressional representative ask “is it okay to still have children?“ and yesterday we saw Democratic senators blocking a vote to protect infants that survive abortion attempts.  As Christians and as pro-life advocates we speak out against such evil ideologies as we should.  But many Christians and pro-life advocates fail to even recognize, let alone address the root cause of America’s Antinatalism.

Yes, Having Children is a “moral question”

Fox News reported the following about Rep. Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez’s “legitimate question” that she asked just a few days ago:

“Freshman Rep. Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez said young people have to ask a “legitimate question” in the wake of climate change and mounting student loan debt: “Is it okay to still have children?”

“Our planet is going to face disaster if we don’t turn this ship around,” she said, as she chopped sweet potatoes. “And so it’s basically like, there is a scientific consensus that the lives of children are going to be very difficult and it does lead, I think young people, to have a legitimate question. Ya know, should—is it okay to still have children?

She continued: “Not just financially because people are graduating with 20, 30, 100 thousand dollars of student loan debt so they can’t even afford to have kids in the house, but there’s also just this basic moral question, like, what do we do?””

I actually agree with Miss Ocasio-Cortez that the decision to have children is a “basic moral question”.  And I am glad she framed it that way as a moral question and not a just a “personal decision” as we so often hear. So, here is the answer to Miss Ocasio-Cortez’s question – It is not only “okay to still have children” but it is actually commanded by God:

“And God blessed them, and God said unto them, Be fruitful, and multiply, and replenish the earth, and subdue it: and have dominion over the fish of the sea, and over the fowl of the air, and over every living thing that moveth upon the earth.”

Genesis 1:28 (KJV)

God’s very first command to mankind was to “Be fruitful, and multiply, and replenish the earth” and until he rescinds that command, we are obliged to obey it.

For young men that means working toward a career that can support a wife and children and as soon as they can support a family seeking out a wife for marriage.

For young women they should be working with their fathers to find godly husbands who can support them and then getting married not long after high school or even dropping out of high school for marriage if their father finds a man earlier and that he approves of.

But whenever we talk about God’s first command and its continuing relevance for our lives today, we must also talk about his exception to that command which is celibacy.

“7 For I would that all men were even as I myself. But every man hath his proper gift of God, one after this manner, and another after that. 8 I say therefore to the unmarried and widows, it is good for them if they abide even as I.  9 But if they cannot contain, let them marry: for it is better to marry than to burn.”

I Corinthians 7:7-9 (KJV)

God gives some people the gift of celibacy for undivided service to him.  Celibacy is not meant as a “get out of marriage free card” as some like to use it.  It is not meant to allow one to live a selfish life free of the responsibilities of marriage and children. It is meant for undivided service to God and is the ONLY exception to God’s command to be fruitful and multiply which means – get married, have sex and have children.

Abortion on Demand is a Natural Consequence of Giving Woman Equal Rights with Men

What I said previously about young women seeking marriage right after high school or even dropping out of high school for marriage may be offensive even to some pro-life people reading this.  But you must understand that God did not command that women have college educations and careers but rather he commanded that they marry and have children:

“I will therefore that the younger women marry, bear children, guide the house, give none occasion to the adversary to speak reproachfully.”

1 Timothy 5:14 (KJV)

Our society’s push for women’s equality with men and independence from men, whether it be in education, careers or voting has directly led to some very tragic realities that are all but buried by our media and sadly even our churches today.

Before the woman’s rights movement began in the mid 1800’s, divorce rates were 3 percent.

By the time of the passage of Woman’s Suffrage in 1920 the divorce rates had jumped to 13 percent.

In the mid 1980’s divorce rates had peaked at 53 percent.  The only reason they eventually fell to the mid 40 percent range since the 1980’s is because of the wide scale abandonment of marriage.

Today, 60 percent of people ages 18 to 34 are not married. And the majority of this critical age group is not even cohabitating.

Based on all the statistics we know about increased divorce rates and falling marriage rates since the beginning of the woman’s rights movements in the mid-19th century, we must admit the following truth:

Male/female relationships and most importantly the institution of marriage itself has been decimated by the woman’s rights movement in America.

Over 60 million divorces have occurred since the women’s rights movement began pushing for women’s legal and financial independence from men.  And if you are pro-life you probably know that over 60 million abortions have taken place since the 1973 Supreme Court decision in Roe vs. Wade.

Please hear me as a fellow pro-life advocate, you cannot separate abortion from the woman’s rights movement.  Abortion rights were simply the logical consequence of making women equal with men and making women financially and legally independent of men. God never meant for women to be social equals with men anymore than he meant for children to be social equals with their parents.

The Bible tells us God’s social order in the following Scripture passages:

“But I would have you know, that the head of every man is Christ; and the head of the woman is the man; and the head of Christ is God.”

I Corinthians 11:3 (KJV)

“But I suffer not a woman to teach, nor to usurp authority over the man, but to be in silence.”

1 Timothy 2:12 (KJV)

But we in America and Western civilization thought we knew better.  We over turned God’s social order and we have reaped what we have sown.

Abortion leads to Infanticide

Yesterday, we had Democrats blocking the “Born-Alive Abortion Survivors Protection Act” as reported by Fox News:

“Senate Democrats on Monday blocked a Republican bill that would have threatened prison time for doctors who don’t try saving the life of infants born alive during failed abortions, leading conservatives to wonder openly whether Democrats were embracing “infanticide” to appeal to left-wing voters.

All prominent Democratic 2020 presidential hopefuls in the Senate voted down the measure, including Bernie Sanders of Vermont, Kamala Harris of California, Cory Booker of New Jersey, Kirsten Gillibrand of New York, Amy Klobuchar of Minnesota and Elizabeth Warren of Massachusetts. The final vote was 53-44 to end Democratic delaying tactics — seven votes short of the 60 needed…

The Born-Alive Abortion Survivors Protection Act would have required that “any health care practitioner present” at the time of a birth “exercise the same degree of professional skill, care, and diligence to preserve the life and health of the child as a reasonably diligent and conscientious health care practitioner would render to any other child born alive at the same gestational age.””

As a society we have placed women’s rights on such a high pedestal that we are now literally willing to sacrifice the life of not just unborn children, but even those who have been born.  When will we open our eyes to this evil?

Conclusion

We cannot continue to avoid this question.  How did we as a society come to a point where on February 25th, 2019 the United State’s Senate actually blocked a bill protecting infants that are born alive from being allowed to simply die on a table with no help?

The root of this issue started on July 19th, 1848 in Seneca Falls, New York with the first women’s rights convention. After this conference new rights were given to women in divorce making divorce easier and less painful for women which lead to a spike in divorces even before the passage of Woman’s Suffrage in 1920.

Women from 1848 and forward began to rebel against the authority of their fathers and their husbands.  This led to the rejection of courtship and the embrace of the new practice of dating.   Dating led to rampant sex outside of marriage and a jump in out of wedlock births which eventually peaked at what we have today which is a 40 percent out-wedlock birth rate.

This change to woman-centric marriages and relationships also lead to a 53 percent divorce rate at its peak in the 1980’s.  After divorce rates peaked at 53 percent the next generation began rejecting marriage and even dating became dysfunctional to the point that in our current culture 60 percent of people ages 18-34 are not married.

So, we can see the natural progression.

Giving women more rights and control over their lives, bodies and who they married led to more divorce, more sex outside of marriage, more children born out of wedlock, abortion and finally now in 2019 legalized infanticide.

When will we admit the root of all this evil?  When will we admit that overturning God’s design and his social order of men ruling over women was a colossal mistake? How far must we go as a society before we will come to our senses?  Will our civilization have to collapse before we will undo all the rights we have given to women since the Seneca Falls convention in 1848?

Why A Wife Should Endure Painful Sex with Her Husband

Should a wife always alert her husband at the first sign of painful intercourse? Or should women endure a certain amount of pain and hide this from their husbands? What about women who deal with chronic and un-treatable conditions that will always make sexual intercourse painful? How does the Bible say a Christian wife should respond in these situations?

Since the average person in America today is only capable of reading a title, and perhaps the first few paragraphs let me start off with what this article is NOT advocating for.

  1.  This article DOES NOT advocate for men to have sex with their wives right after children birth or after she has had a surgery or when she is sick.
  2.  This article DOES NOT advocate for sexual sadism (taking sexual pleasure from causing someone else pain).
  3.  This article DOES NOT tell women they cannot or should never tell their husbands about pain during sex, nor is it saying men should never stop having sex when their wife indicates there is a pain issue.

The article is actually taking comments that were sent to me, one from a man and then multiple comments from two women discussing painful intercourse from a Christian woman’s point of view.  This article discusses two types of pain – one that is caused by temporary issues that some of the women allude to below and others that are caused by chronic untreatable conditions.

STOP Reading this Article from this point if…

  1. You are unable to learn new things.
  2. You are unable to emotionally or intellectually process other points of view.
  3. You think sex is not a need and is only for pleasure and no reasoning to the contrary will convince you otherwise.
  4. You think men only want sex from their wives for pleasure and no reasoning to the contrary will convince you otherwise.
  5.  You do not think any person should ever suffer even the smallest amount of pain in order to do something kind for another person and no reasoning  will convince you otherwise.
  6.  You accept that people may suffer pain in order to do something kind for others, except in the area of sex.  You believe there is never a circumstance where a man or woman should suffer even the smallest amount of pain during sex for the benefit of the other person and no reasoning will convince you otherwise.

So if you are the person I just described. STOP READING.  Go on and continue living in your safe space with your beliefs and presuppositions unchallenged. But if you are an open minded person, and are intellectually and emotionally strong enough to have your beliefs challenged and tested and perhaps even changed then continue reading.

But I give you this last warning.  If you continue reading – you may be exposed to Bible passages and ideas that you have never heard in all your life.  You may find truths in the Bible that are life changing.  Truths that give us as men and women purpose for our lives.  Truths that conflict with many values and ideologies that you have been raised with as an American, and even as a Christian.

You may find out that this is about a lot more than just women experiencing painful sex.

And with that said here we go…

The following comments were recently submitted on an article that I wrote back in 2016 entitled “The benefits of being a sexually obedient wife”.

The first came from a person calling himself JDMartin:

“Sex is actually fairly painful for my wife. She has never said flatout no, and absolutely never asked to stop before I am finished shes proud of that and basically wont let me stop or it would “ruin her record” lol. She has a saying or thing she says from time to time that “women have no idea what makes a girl good in bed is what she is willing to let her husband do, and how much pain she can take.”

After some other comments he sent that I blocked and did not approve I became convinced JDMartin was in fact a troll. But I decided to let his first comments remain because of the conversation it evoked with two women. Sometimes even some of the absurdity in comments by trolls can bring about good discussions.

The first woman, Alice, made this response to JD Martin’s comment:

“The idea that what makes a woman good in bed is “how much pain she can take” is not biblical, in the least. It is also repugnant. It has nothing to do with feminism, but with basic biology. If sex is painful for a woman, than something is wrong, either with her or with her husband’s treatment of her.”

A second woman called, Sunny, made this response to Alice:

“Alice I actually disagree with you on that. I’m not going to say if you should or should not continue sex if it’s painful (that is up to the individuals to decide). I will say from personal experience that painful sex doesn’t always mean there is something wrong. Sex can be painful at times with my husband. I’m not sure how else to put this but if a man is larger in the “southern region” then sex can and will be painful at times. Again, I’m not saying if a woman should or should not continue as that is a personal choice. Personally, for us there are times he will stop and other times where it doesn’t really matter or we will just change positions. That’s probably TMI but it’s true and I’m sure many women have dealt with it when their husbands are above average in size.”

Alice then responded:

“Sunny, my husband is also overly endowed. (and why on Earth do women think this is a good thing?!) He takes extra care and patience so that I very rarely experience pain. Not to mention, six babies have made their way through that passage and their heads were certainly much larger! I still maintain that if a woman is crying through the whole experience, the man is doing something wrong, or she has medical issues which should be addressed.

To which Sunny made this final response:

“Alice. You must understand that all women are different. I have one child via c-section. After a c-section the muscles swell and tighten up, that is “normal” after a c-section. My friend had the same problem, she approached a doctor about it and even her own doctor wasn’t concerned about the pain during intercourse. Basically, she told her that is going to happen. I did cry the first time I had sex after my
c-section as I became virgin tight again.
Yes, there are times that painful sex is link to medical conditions or reason for concern but most certainly not in ALL cases.

If my husband and I are not intimate for a few weeks sex does become painful for me. This might not be the case for you, but you must understand that our bodies are not the same. If a woman waits longer periods of time between sex things tighten down there. Add in larger male size the act of slipping it in even hurts. I actually have been on the verge of crying because we waited two months in-between sex. According to a medical professional that’s actually normal.

Maybe your case is different because your sex life is more active and you’ve had children naturally but this is NOT the case for many women (myself included).
I’m also in pain sometimes after exercising that doesn’t mean there is something wrong, you kinda just use logic and deal with it if it’s not a reason for concern.

I really do enjoy sometimes just letting people hash things out a bit before I respond and I actually think it is a great thing for women to speak to each other in candid ways like this. There are things that women need to hear from other women and this is an excellent case of that.

However, contrary to popular belief today, women can also learn about sex from men. God divinely spoke his word through men and he also assigned fathers, husbands, pastors and other male Christian teachers the responsibility to teach both men and women his word regarding sex in marriage.

So, what is the answer to this question of painful sex for women – should a wife endure any pain during intercourse with her husband?

The answer can be found in applying several principles found in the Bible.

Seven Biblical Principles That Form the Christian Philosophy of Sex

Principle #1 – God created man to bring him glory by imaging him. (I Corinthians 11:7)
Principle# 2 – God created woman for man, not man for woman. (I Corinthians 11:9)
Principle #3 – God created man to desire beauty and pleasure to image God’s desire for beauty and pleasure. (Psalm 45:11, Isaiah 46:10, Revelation 4:11)
Principle #4– One of the reasons God created woman for man was to be his source or his “well” of sexual pleasure. God equates a man’s need for sex with his need for water. (Proverbs 5:15-19) The New Testament tells us that sex is “the natural use of the woman” by man. (Romans 1:27)
Principle #5 – A man may only engage in “the natural use of the woman” after he has entered into a covenant of marriage with that woman. (Hebrews 13:4) All sex outside of a marriage covenant (such as prostitution or pre-marital sex) is condemned by God.
Principle #6 – God also created woman with a need for sex and he equates a woman’s need for sex with that of her need for food and clothing. (Exodus 21:10-11) But why did God plant this need in woman? Why did God give woman the desire to have sex and the ability to experience sexual pleasure? For this we must refer to back to Principle #2. This tells us that a woman’s desire for sex and her ability to enjoy sex was not given to her for own sake, but rather for the sake of her husband to compliment and enhance his sexual pleasure. And when a man enjoys the sexual pleasure of his wife, he images the pleasure God receives in his relationship with his people.
Principle #7All Christians, both men and women are called to emulate Christ’s endurance in the face of suffering and pain especially for the benefit of others. (1 Peter 2:21-24)

So, when we tie all the above principles together the answer to whether a Christian wife should endure painful sex with her husband is YES.

Some Clarifications

Should a wife seek out help from her doctor if she experiences painful intercourse? Absolutely yes! Some causes of pain can be helped with medication or sometimes even surgery. But other types of pain experienced by women during intercourse may have no cure and a woman may have to learn to endure and cope with such pain.

Still other types of pain may be temporary as Sunny alluded to like when a wife has not had sex in while it may hurt the first few times afterwards and she may need to very regularly have sex (which is a good thing for her husband and herself) in order to avoid this kind of pain.

Might some types of pain be avoided simply by the husband making some changes in his methods? Of course. And wives should find respectful and gentle ways to direct their husbands in this regard.

Should a woman hide her pain from her husband?

Some women might use visual cues of pain to help their husbands understand what hurts and what does not. This can be used, but should be used carefully. If it used to help improve sex, and not shame her husband then it can be a good thing. It might also be warning to the woman herself that she needs to see a doctor.

However, what if after seeing a doctor the doctor tells her that source of her pain cannot be cured and there is nothing that her husband can do differently to make this pain go away?

The answer is clear, even if it is not easy. A wife who suffers from chronic and untreatable dyspareunia (painful intercourse) must find the strength to endure such pain and not only endure it but hide it as much as possible from her husband.

The reason she should hide this is for her to do her best to fulfill one the purposes for which God designed her and that is the sexual pleasure of her husband.

There is another general principle that applies to all Christians, both men and women and that is that we are to set aside anything that hinders us from fulfilling the purposes that God has for our lives. And when it comes to this issue of painful sex, I encourage wives to truly mediate on this passage from the book of Hebrews:
“1 Wherefore seeing we also are compassed about with so great a cloud of witnesses, let us lay aside every weight, and the sin which doth so easily beset us, and let us run with patience the race that is set before us, 2 Looking unto Jesus the author and finisher of our faith; who for the joy that was set before him endured the cross, despising the shame, and is set down at the right hand of the throne of God.”
Hebrews 12:1-2

Are you willing to lay aside your pride, your discomfort and even your chronic sexual pain and to endure such pain to fulfill one of the purposes for which God created you which was to bring sexual pleasure to your husband? Are you willing to do this without an attitude, without trying to pass your suffering on to your husband in order to make him not want to have sex with you?

If a Woman is Crying Throughout Sex is the Man Always Wrong to Continue?

Alice made the following statement in regard to JDMartin’s statement about his wife crying during sex:

I still maintain that if a woman is crying through the whole experience, the man is doing something wrong, or she has medical issues which should be addressed.

But is it true that if a woman is crying through the whole sexual experience that it is automatically the man doing something wrong? The answer is no.

In the case of JDMartin I think from his own admission of being rough with his wife he may be doing something wrong. But it really does depend though on the woman. What is rough? Some women are like china dolls and any amount of friction or thrusting during sex may be considered rough to them when it really is not and they simply need to endure and strengthen themselves.

For me personally since I have been married to two different women (I divorced my first wife for adultery) I can say I saw this difference play out first hand. My first wife was telling me to be rougher and my second wife was telling me to be gentler. So every woman really is different in this regard.

Husbands and wives both need to adjust to one another when it comes to sex. Sometimes a man may have to make some changes for his wife, but at the same time a woman might have to endure some things for her husband.

So when a woman cries all during sex could it be that the man is mistreating her? Absolutely yes. But from a Christian perspective we must realize that sometimes it could be the woman who is in the wrong for crying throughout the entire sexual experience. If a woman is crying to manipulate her husband because she simply did not want to have sex or to make him feel bad for wanting sex when she did not then the sin lies with her.

Even a woman who suffers from true painful intercourse whether it is from a temporary condition (like some of the examples Sunny gave) or if it is from a long term chronic and un-treatable condition that causes painful intercourse might be in the wrong for crying throughout the entire experience.

The point here on a woman crying during sex is this. It is not always the man that is in the wrong when this occurs. It can sometimes be the woman who is in the wrong for crying. And in some rare cases neither neither one may be wrong in what they are doing. The husband may not be in wrong for continuing and finishing and the wife may not be in the wrong for crying.

The Practical Benefits of a Wife Enduring Painful Sex

Now I want to move from the Biblical reasons a woman should endure painful sex with her husband to the practical benefits of enduring such pain.

My wife, like many women I know, loves flowers. Each year we plant flowers in our front yard and we also get hanging baskets. These flowers need two things to survive. They need sunlight and they need water.

If they get sunlight but no water they will die. If they get water but no sunlight they will also die.

In the same way a man’s affection and his passion for his wife is fueled by two things. Sex and Respect. Sex is like water for a man’s affection and respect is like sunlight for a man’s affection. If a woman gives him both in most cases, she will find that her husband’s affection for her will be strong and healthy. If either of these are missing his affection for his wife may wane and die.

So even aside from spiritual reasons there are very practical reasons that a woman should gladly endure painful sex with her husband in order to “water” his affection for her.

Conclusion

Will you as a woman set aside your pride and unlearn the selfishness that our society has taught you? Will you be strong in the way God meant you to be and not the way the world tells you to be strong? The world tells women that for them to be strong they must stand up for themselves and stand up to men. But God tells women that they were made for men (I Corinthians 11:9) and they are to submit to their husbands in everything (Ephesians 5:24). The Bible also tells us that strength is not always demonstrated through resistance. Sometimes strength is demonstrated through joyfully exercising patience, endurance and longsuffering.
“10 That ye might walk worthy of the Lord unto all pleasing, being fruitful in every good work, and increasing in the knowledge of God; 11 Strengthened with all might, according to his glorious power, unto all patience and longsuffering with joyfulness;
Colossians 1:10-11

So, what will you do with your pain? Will you use it as a selfish excuse to hinder your husband from fully exercising the image of God in him? Will you pass your suffering on to your husband and thus hinder what God designed to be a primary driver of his affection for you?

Or will you demonstrate true Christian strength and with joy endure painful sex for the betterment of your husband and your marriage and thus fulfill one of the most important purposes for which God designed you as a woman?

The choice is yours and the consequences of your choice will be yours as well.