Feminism – The Return to the Sin of Eden

The first sin woman ever committed in the Garden of Eden was not accepting the limits God had placed upon her.  She wanted equality.  The first sin man committed was in knowingly abdicating his authority over his wife and following her in her sinful desire rather than rebuking her sin.

The scriptures show us that woman was deceived by her sinful desire for equality:

“1 Now the serpent was more subtil than any beast of the field which the Lord God had made. And he said unto the woman, Yea, hath God said, Ye shall not eat of every tree of the garden?

2 And the woman said unto the serpent, We may eat of the fruit of the trees of the garden: 3 But of the fruit of the tree which is in the midst of the garden, God hath said, Ye shall not eat of it, neither shall ye touch it, lest ye die.

4 And the serpent said unto the woman, Ye shall not surely die: 5 For God doth know that in the day ye eat thereof, then your eyes shall be opened, and ye shall be as gods, knowing good and evil.

6 And when the woman saw that the tree was good for food, and that it was pleasant to the eyes, and a tree to be desired to make one wise, she took of the fruit thereof, and did eat, and gave also unto her husband with her; and he did eat.”

Genesis 3:1-6 (KJV)

Later in divine commentary given to him by God, the Apostle Paul gives us further detail on the Genesis account:

“And Adam was not deceived, but the woman being deceived was in the transgression.”

1 Timothy 2:14 (KJV)

So what Paul is telling us is that Eve was deceived by her desire for equality while Adam went into the sin fully knowing what he was doing.  His sin was not a desire for equality with God, but rather a failure to live out his role by leading his wife and rebuking her sinful request to him.  God tells us man’s first sin when he states:

And unto Adam he said, Because thou hast hearkened unto the voice of thy wife, and hast eaten of the tree, of which I commanded thee, saying, Thou shalt not eat of it: cursed is the ground for thy sake; in sorrow shalt thou eat of it all the days of thy life;”

Genesis 3:17 (KJV)

Many years later the righteous man Job would do with his wife what Adam should have done with Eve when Job’s wife enticed him to sin against God as Eve enticed Adam to sin to against God:

“9 Then said his wife unto him, Dost thou still retain thine integrity? curse God, and die. 10 But he said unto her, Thou speakest as one of the foolish women speaketh. What? shall we receive good at the hand of God, and shall we not receive evil? In all this did not Job sin with his lips.”

Job 2:9-10 (KJV)

Job did not follow his wife’s sinful request – but instead he rebuked his wife as God would later rebuke his wife Israel (Hosea 2:2-23) and Christ would later rebuke his wife the Church (Revelation chapters 2 & 3).

God warns Adam just as he would later warn Cain

In Genesis 4 we read of God’s warning to Cain regarding his sin nature:

“If thou doest well, shalt thou not be accepted? and if thou doest not well, sin lieth at the door. And unto thee shall be his desire, and thou shalt rule over him.

Genesis 4:7 (KJV)

When God speaks of “his desire” he is speaking of Cain’s sinful nature.  His sin nature wanted to control his actions and make him sin against God.  But God told him instead of letting his sin nature rule over him, he must rule over his sin nature.

This exact same phrase is used by God regarding a woman and her relationship to her husband:

“16 Unto the woman he said, I will greatly multiply thy sorrow and thy conception; in sorrow thou shalt bring forth children; and thy desire shall be to thy husband, and he shall rule over thee.

Genesis 3:16 (KJV)

In this case sin’s desire is replaced by the woman’s desire toward her husband.  What we find in Genesis chapters 3 and 4 is that man must fight against two powerful forces that desire to control him and would have him sin against God.  He must rule both over his own sinful nature as well as the sinful nature of his wife.

“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)

A woman’s sinful desire causes her not only to seek equality with man – but also to usurp authority over man thus reversing the created design of God in regard to the two genders.

After 6000 years woman and man return to their original sins

Men and women have sinned against God in many ways since that fateful day in the Garden of Eden around 6000 years ago. And women have rebelled against their authority in man for all that time in many different ways.

But while man sinned against God in many ways since that day in the Garden there was one command that for the most part man followed:

“thy desire shall be to thy husband, and he shall rule over thee” Genesis 3:16 (KJV)

Men for all of human history up until the mid-19th century followed God’s command for them to rule over women. Sometimes they did so in harsh and imperfect ways, but for the most part they did not fail to exercise this mandate. Men were fully cognizant of a woman’s sinful desire for equality with man as she sinfully desired equality with God in Eden. Men, for the most part, were cognizant of a woman’s sinful desire to control man and men kept women in their place even when they sought to rebel.

But around the mid-19th century an equality cult was born. It was this equality cult, or egalitarianism as it is now called, which gave rise to the birth of feminism.  The equality movement taught that if one person did not have the same rights and privileges as another then this was treating that person in an inhumane and unjust manner.  Feminism seized on this principle applying it specifically to women calling the inequality of women to men an injustice.  The Bible was even twisted and mangled to support this false notion of injustice.

Just as Eve reached for that forbidden fruit in the Garden of Eden women were once against reaching for the forbidden fruit of equality. But men having stood their ground against this sinful inclination in women for 6000 years relented and they once again did what God condemn Adam for.  They abdicated their mandate to rule over women and “hearkened unto the voice” of women.

This movement cast aside the patriarchal family structure that had served mankind since creation itself. This feminist movement eventually infected the Church and attacked the very foundations of God’s design of the genders and of his divine institution of marriage.

The result of the equality cult and his spawn of feminism has been the downfall marriage and the family over the last century.  God’s institution of marriage is routinely mocked by couples engaging in casual sex. Divorce is rampant and couples living sin together is the norm. Children having two moms and dads is now the way of life.

But as Christian Churches and as Christian men and women we can return to God and his will and design for our genders if we so choose and he will heal our land if we do so.

If my people, which are called by my name, shall humble themselves, and pray, and seek my face, and turn from their wicked ways; then will I hear from heaven, and will forgive their sin, and will heal their land.”

2 Chronicles 7:14 (KJV)

Returning to Biblical Gender Roles

In order to return to living by Biblical gender roles we must return to “the book” as a young Israelite King did.

“10 And Shaphan the scribe shewed the king, saying, Hilkiah the priest hath delivered me a book. And Shaphan read it before the king. 11 And it came to pass, when the king had heard the words of the book of the law, that he rent his clothes. 12 And the king commanded Hilkiah the priest, and Ahikam the son of Shaphan, and Achbor the son of Michaiah, and Shaphan the scribe, and Asahiah a servant of the king’s, saying, 13 Go ye, enquire of the Lord for me, and for the people, and for all Judah, concerning the words of this book that is found: for great is the wrath of the Lord that is kindled against us, because our fathers have not hearkened unto the words of this book, to do according unto all that which is written concerning us.”

2 Kings 22:10-13 (KJV)

The “book” alluded to in the story above is the Word of God.  Like young Josiah said of his ancestors, our American “fathers have not hearkened unto the words of this book, to do according unto all that which is written concerning us.” Our Ancestors starting in the mid-19th century began to lose their way when they followed the false teachings of egalitarianism and feminism.

Now we must return to the teachings of “this book” if God is to heal our land, our churches, our families and our marriages. This is the primary mission of this site – BiblicalGenderRoles.com.

With that being said we will start with the divine commentary on the Genesis account as given by the Apostle Paul:

“3 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…

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. 11 Nevertheless neither is the man without the woman, neither the woman without the man, in the Lord. ”

I Corinthians 11:3 & 7-11 (KJV)

This passage teaches four critical Biblical principles if we are to understand God’s design of man and woman in this world.

Biblical Gender Principle #1 – Man was made to image God

Man is “the image and glory of God” meaning he is God’s direct image bearer and he was made to bring glory to God by playing out the image of God.

So what does this mean? It means the masculine traits given to men before the fall and those masculine traits which are honored by God are things that men should freely and abundantly exercise to the best of their ability.  Man’s desire to lead, provide and protect.  His competitive nature, his desire to build, his desire for respect and his desire for beauty and pleasure all come from God. Man’s desire for all these things is not simply for himself, but ultimately it is so that he will fulfill the purpose of his design which was to be God’s direct image bearer.

Women today complain that men just don’t act like men anymore and you know what – they are right! But it is men, not women that must decide for themselves that they will act like men.

“Be on the alert, stand firm in the faith, act like men, be strong.”

1 Corinthians 16:13 (NASB)

It is men who must decide to take back their mantle of responsibility. Will they work hard and provide for their families or will they be deadbeats? Will they love their wives and children by leading them, correcting them, teaching them, providing for them and protecting them as God does for his people or will they abuse their families and abdicate their responsibilities? Will men follow the mandate to rule over their wives or will they let their wives rule over them? Will they image God or not? These are the choices men must make for themselves.

Biblical Gender Principle #2 – Woman was made to help man image God

There are many Christians on both sides of the aisle that teach that men need women to help them be what God intended them to be.   But most of these Christians do so from the false premise that woman by nature is spiritually and morally stronger than man and they in essence teach that men need their wives to act as a mother figure to them to help them to fully image God as a husband and father.

Christian Feminists and Egalitarians on the left make no secret of their belief that men need women to keep them in line. They have no problem with women usurping authority over their husbands wherever a woman feels her husband is wrong.

But there are many Christian groups which on the surface seem to oppose women usurping authority over men but then they encourage feminine usurping through the back door.  Focus on the Family is a good example of this.  In one statement they will say they believe in male headship and that women should submit to their husbands.   But then they completely undermine Biblical patriarchy by teaching women they may usurp authority over their husbands by “placing boundaries” on their husbands.  Women placing boundaries on their husbands is just another way of saying women can correct and discipline their husbands as a mother would correct and discipline her son.

In a way the teachings of groups like Focus on the Family, that supposedly support Biblical male headship yet subtly undermine it, are more dangerous than that of Christian feminist groups because they are mixing their heresy with some truths from God’s Word.

So how should a woman help her husband?

From a Biblical perspective a woman helps a man image God not by being his mother and teacher but instead by giving her husband the respect she gave her own father and seeing her husband as her teacher. Only when a woman rids herself of all pride realizing that every part of her God given physical and mental design was meant to serve and bless her husband can she help him image God.

It is when a woman expresses her respect for her husband, her need for his leadership and guidance and when she fully submits her mind and body to his will making herself one with him in this way that she fully helps him to image God.

Woman was made in man’s image to bring him glory and by doing so she brings God glory. God made woman the “weaker vessel” (I Peter 3:7) so that she would need man as mankind needs God. Woman was made from man (I Corinthians 11:8) so that she would share in common with man a human nature.  In their common human traits men and women both reflect the nature of God but woman’s nature deviates from God’s nature in her distinctively feminine traits. Every attribute of a woman’s feminine nature was given to her not as a reflection of God’s image, but rather as a way to help man fully reflect God’s image by being an object upon which man can fully play out his role as the image bearer of God.

Biblical Gender Principle #3 – Only through marriage can man and woman fully live out their design

Men and Women are given a natural pull and complementary needs toward one another so that they will play out the roles given them by God.  This is why I Corinthians 11:11 tells us “Nevertheless neither is the man without the woman, neither the woman without the man, in the Lord.” – meaning that God made men and women interdependent on one another. Many liberal Christians and those who reject Biblical principles will not have a problem with this third principle.  They like that men and women need each other.  It sounds nice.  But what they don’t like is WHY the Bible teaches here that men and women need each other.

“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:

30 For we are members of his body, of his flesh, and of his bones.

31 For this cause shall a man leave his father and mother, and shall be joined unto his wife, and they two shall be one flesh. 32 This is a great mystery: but I speak concerning Christ and the church.

33 Nevertheless let every one of you in particular so love his wife even as himself; and the wife see that she reverence her husband.” – Ephesians 5:22-33 (KJV)

It is “for this cause” (vs 31), the cause of fully playing out the roles that God has given to men and women that we enter into marriage.  Ephesians 5 shows us that God made man the image bearer and woman for man to play out his role as the image bearer in marriage. In God’s divine institution of marriage man plays the role of God and woman plays the role of mankind.

Men “need” women as objects upon which to play out their God given image traits. On the other hand – every need of the God given feminine nature (before the corruption of Eden) is given to a woman to help man play out his God given attributes.

In other words the reason God gave women a desire to be beautiful was not for themselves but it was because men desire beauty.  Women were not given sexual desire for themselves, or the ability to derive sexual pleasure for themselves.  They were given sexual desire and the ability to experience sexual pleasure to please their husbands for whom they were made. A woman was not given the desire to bear and nurture children for herself, but rather she was given these desires to please her husband and help him fully play out his God given image as both husband and father.

In summary regarding this third principle – there are some things God has given us to do that we cannot do without cooperation with someone else. It is only through God’s divine institution of marriage that men and women can fully play out the design for their genders.  Man cannot fully image God without becoming a husband and father and woman cannot fully live out her role as the being created specifically for man without finding a man to serve as his wife and mother to his children.

Biblical Gender Principle #4 – Celibacy is God’s exception to his design for two genders

In the rare case of celibacy, God allows in his sovereignty for some men and women not to fully play out the roles he designed for each gender.

God’s rule – “Be fruitful, and multiply” (Genesis 1:28) is that man plays out his image and that woman is the object upon which man plays out his image.  His exception to this rule is that he has given some the “gift” of celibacy (I Corinthians 7:7) so he does not put in them the independency upon the opposite sex referenced in I Corinthians 11:11. This gift is given for service to God.  But we must remember this is the exception to God’s design and not the norm of his design for man and woman.

Conclusion

Unfortunately our American ancestors have returned us to the original sins committed by Adam and Eve in the Garden of Eden. Eve sought an equality that was not hers to have and Adam abdicated his responsibility to rule over his wife and followed her sinful request. But like young King Josiah – we too can return to God’s ways if we return to the teachings of “the book” – the Word of God.  It starts with us as men and women as individuals returning to God’s Word and then with husbands teaching their wives and fathers teaching their children.  When our families are rebuilt on the Word of God then we can take back our Churches for God and eventually our nation for God.

Update 6/10/2017:

I made a minor change in my text to reflect the earth is 6000 years old by Biblical chronology, not 7000 as I originally put.

See this excellent article on the subject of the age of the earth:

https://answersingenesis.org/age-of-the-earth/how-old-is-the-earth/

3 Bible passages about marriage you won’t hear in Church

Church

In church you might have heard passages that say men should honor and love their wives. These passages are true, and right. You may have even heard verses that tell women they should submit to their husbands. But these three passages are rarely if ever taught:

“For in this way in former times the holy women also, who hoped in God, used to adorn themselves, being submissive to their own husbands; just as Sarah obeyed Abraham, calling him lord…”

I Peter 3: 5-6 (HCSB)

“A man, in fact, should not cover his head, because he is God’s image and glory, but woman is man’s glory…”

I Corinthians 11:7 (HCSB)

“Man was not created for woman, but woman for man.”

I Corinthians 11:9 (HCSB)

The reason these passages are not taught in our churches, is because they emphasize three concepts about man and woman, and marriage that are VERY politically incorrect in our modern American culture:

The mastery of the husband over the wife (marriage seen as a master-servant relationship)

Men and women are not equal, man is the image and glory God, woman is the glory of man

Man was not created for woman, but woman was created for man

These passages spit in the face of our modern American ideals of equality and fairness. How can anyone be master of over anyone else? No one could have been made for anyone else. This is by definition slavery, and we won’t have any part of it. So these passages have to go, because they don’t match up with our romantic ideals about marriage.

The Scriptures warn of times like these:

“Proclaim the message; persist in it whether convenient or not; rebuke, correct, and encourage with great patience and teaching. For the time will come when they will not tolerate sound doctrine, but according to their own desires, will multiply teachers for themselves because they have an itch to hear something new. They will turn away from hearing the truth and will turn aside to myths.”

I Timothy 4:2-4 (HCSB)

 

You men just want this so you can control women and make your lives better!

Many Christians will either try and explain away these passages, or say they were for a different time. They will attack the very foundations of Scripture if they must, in order to take away the power and meaning of these passages.

Those few who still stand for God’s Word, and his design and purpose for man and woman are accused of wanting to control women for their own selfish gains. But the truth of God is this – when a man leads, provides and protects his woman, and his family, when he honors his wife and loves her, and when she submits to and serves his needs, and the needs of the her family – this is when we will have peace, God’s peace, and this is when we will have order, as opposed to chaos in marriages and families we find today.

Our new romantic based, feeling based, equality based marriages have not fared so well in modern times. Marriage rates have declined, and of those who do get married, more than 50 percent divorce. When will we realize that role based marriage, as God designed it, is right not only for us as individuals, but for us as a culture and as a nation?

We must rid feminism and egalitarianism from our marriages, our families, our churches and our nation, one marriage at a time.

Is Christian marriage a master – servant relationship?

masterservant

The obvious answer to this question is absolutely not! Right? Marriage is a loving relationship of two equal partner’s right? This what we are told time and time again, even in many Christian marriage books. Even in some more conservative Christian marriage books that teach about male headship, they always seem to qualify a man’s headship role over woman in marriage, by saying something like “this is not a master and servant relationship, but simply an order of priority”.

But the Bible speaks very differently on this matter than what our modern society accepts.

The Bible states that the husband is the “head” of his wife:

22 Wives, be subject to your own husbands, as to the Lord. 23 For the husband is the head of the wife, as Christ also is the head of the church, He Himself being the Savior of the body. 24 But as the church is subject to Christ, so also the wives ought to be to their husbands in everything.”

Ephesians 5:22-24 NASB

Ephesians 5 tells us that marriage is to be a picture of the relationship of Christ and the Church. The husband is to model Christ in his love, leadership, provision and protection of his wife and the wife is to model the Church in her serving of her husband, and she is to be “subject” to him in “everything”.

One could argue easily from Ephesians chapter 5 that the relationship between Christ and the Church is in fact a master-servant relationship, rather than a partnership of equals. How could anyone argue that Christ and his Church are equal partners from this or any other passage?

But the Bible even doubles down on this idea that the husband-wife relationship is indeed a master-servant relationship in I Peter chapter 3:

“In the same way, you wives, be submissive to your own husbands so that even if any of them are disobedient to the word, they may be won without a word by the behavior of their wives, 2 as they observe your chaste and respectful behavior. 3 Your adornment must not be merely external—braiding the hair, and wearing gold jewelry, or putting on dresses; 4 but let it be the hidden person of the heart, with the imperishable quality of a gentle and quiet spirit, which is precious in the sight of God. 5 For in this way in former times the holy women also, who hoped in God, used to adorn themselves, being submissive to their own husbands; 6 just as Sarah obeyed Abraham, calling him lord, and you have become her children if you do what is right without being frightened by any fear.”

I Peter 3:1-6 NASB

The Bible in I Peter tells women that they ought to model to their submission to their husbands on Sarah’s behavior with Abraham when she called him “lord”. The English word translated here as “lord” is a translation of the Greek word “Kurios”.

According to Thayer & Smith’s Bible dictionary the definition of Kurios is:

“he to whom a person or thing belongs, about which he has power of deciding; master, lord

  1. the possessor and disposer of a thing

    1. the owner; one who has control of the person, the master

    2. in the state: the sovereign, prince, chief, the Roman emperor

  2. is a title of honour expressive of respect and reverence, with which servants greet their master

  3. this title is given to: God, the Messiah”

The word Kurios most often is translated as “Lord” with a capital “L” indicating a direct reference to God. But in many other places it is often translated as “Master”.

In the Old Testament a husband of a wife was referred to in many places as her “baal” which literally meant “Lord” or “Master” or “Owner”. This same word was even used as the master of owners of slaves.

Proverbs 31:10-11 & 23 & 27-29 NASB

10 An excellent wife, who can find?

For her worth is far above jewels.

11 The heart of her husband [BAAL (Master/Owner)] trusts in her,

And he will have no lack of gain…

23 Her husband [BAAL (Master/Owner)] is known in the gates,

When he sits among the elders of the land…

27 She looks well to the ways of her household,

And does not eat the bread of idleness.

28 Her children rise up and bless her;

Her husband [BAAL (Master/Owner)] also, and he praises her, saying:

29 “Many daughters have done nobly,

But you excel them all.”

What does the Master-Servant aspect of marriage mean for husbands and wives?

I don’t know how any person could look at the Scriptures and see anything less than a Master-Servant relationship between a husband and wife, as opposed to a partnership of two equals. But if you are a woman reading this, before your think I am advocating for men walking all over their wives as selfish dictators let me draw your attention to a word I just used – “LESS”.

Biblically speaking the relationship between a man and his wife is no less than a master-servant relationship, but it is in fact much more than that. A master is not commanded to love each of his servants as his own body as husbands are told to love their wives in Ephesians chapter 5. A master is not commanded to honor his servants and live with them according to knowledge, as a husband is commanded to do with his wife in I Peter chapter 3. A master is not commanded to have sex with his servant as he is commanded to have sex with his wife in I Corinthians 7:5 and Exodus 21:10.

This Biblical truth that marriage is indeed a master-servant relationship can be abused, and many men throughout history have done just that. But when we understand that this is just one aspect of marriage, and not the totality of how marriage works, this can make marriages stronger.

If you are a wife reading this, you might wonder how such a teaching, that your husband is your master, and you are his servant can make your marriage stronger. It makes it stronger because it removes the contention in marriage. It removes the competition. You each have your role to play. Your husband leads, and you follow.

But shouldn’t husbands serve their wives as Christ served his disciples?

There is no doubt that a husband ought to exercise the servant leadership that Christ did. A man ought to be humble enough to serve his wife by helping with making dinner or helping with the kids when she gets overwhelmed. Really this what a good boss, or master does when his employees (or servants) are overrun, he steps in to make up the difference.

But while Christ washed the feet of his disciples, Christ did not spend the majority of his time serving plates of food and washing feet. He spent the majority of his time teaching and leading, as a man should do.

Conclusion

While a husband ought to be humble enough to serve his wife and family where he sees needs arise, his primary concern should be that of leading, providing for and protecting his family. The dominate trait of a wife should be that of a servant. She is not tasked with leading the home, so all of her efforts can focus on serving the needs of her husband, her children and her home.

Obviously the economic reality of some families today sometimes means that a wife may have to serve her husband and family by working outside the home. But this does not change the core principle that a husband is called to lead, and wife is called to serve.

Peace truly comes through living the way our creator designed us to.

Christian Egalitarianism’s rebellion against male authority

An underlying root problem with Christian Egalitarianism is a belief system that is completely at odds with Biblical authority. Christian Egalitarians believe they are simply rebelling against male domination and oppression of women, but in reality they are rebelling against the design and authority which God has established.

The Bible establishes many different types of Authority

We are to submit to our civil authorities

“13 Submit yourselves for the Lord’s sake to every human institution, whether to a king as the one in authority, 14 or to governors as sent by him for the punishment of evildoers and the praise of those who do right.”

I Peter 2:13-14(NASB)

We are to submit to our Church authorities

“Obey your leaders and submit to them, for they keep watch over your souls as those who will give an account. Let them do this with joy and not [b]with grief, for this would be unprofitable for you.”

Hebrews 13:17(NASB)

We are to obey our employers

“Servants, obey in all things your masters according to the flesh; not with eyeservice, as menpleasers; but in singleness of heart, fearing God;”

Colossians 3:22(KJV)

Children are to obey their parents

“Children, obey your parents in the Lord: for this is right.”

Ephesians 6:1(KJV)

Wives are to submit to and obey their husbands

“Therefore as the church is subject unto Christ, so let the wives be to their own husbands in every thing.”

Ephesians 5:24(KJV)

We obey God, when man’s rule conflicts with God

“We ought to obey God rather than men.”

Acts 5:29(KJV)

This issue of authority is one of those areas where the fallacy of Christian Egalitarianism can be clearly seen. We understand that countries, states, cities, churches and businesses need leadership. There must be a chain of command for these organizations to properly function. In each of these areas, there are executives to give direction to the organization and settle disputes.

But Egalitarians say, in perhaps the most foundational of all human groupings, that of marriage, there is no head, no leader. For them it is a partnership of equals with no one to set the direction, or settle disputes. They have no problem with the Bible telling us to submit to our government authorities, or our managers at our jobs. Christian Egalitarians would certainly not have a problem with the Biblical teaching that children should obey their parents.

But when it comes to wives submitting to and obeying their husbands, they are ready to reinterpret or remove those passages, and deny any authority within marriage.

I believe the reason for the rejection of male authority in the home by Christian Egalitarians is that it hits them where they live. Governments can (and should) only exercise limited authority, as well as our employers and churches. But in the home, if the Bible is read at face value, the women is to submit to her husband in “everything”(Ephesians 5:24).

This scares people, such authority could be abused. So they deny it and say no one should have to be under such absolute authority of another human being, or so they think.

It must also be pointed out here that no human authority has absolute power.  Not a king, not a president, not a governor, not an employer and not even a husband.  Each human authority has it’s sphere of power and responsibility and its limits.  Only God has absolute authority.

For instance a husband while being his wife’s head, cannot order his wife to break the  speed limit.  That is a law set by the civil government, and it is within their sphere of authority to make such a law. A husband cannot order his wife to cover up him committing a murder or raping or abusing people as these things violate both the laws of God and the laws of man.

If a husband is physically abusing his children or his wife or is asking his wife to violate the laws of man (as long as those laws don’t violate God’s law or usurp the boundaries God has placed on all authorities) or the laws of God then she has not only the right, but the responsibility to resist him and go to his authorities(whether civil or church) for them to exercise discipline upon him.

A wife has the right to be freed from the tyranny of husband who physically abuses her or her children or threatens her life or the life of her children.

See this post I wrote on this subject “Does the Bible allow divorce for physical abuse?”.

What they do not realize is, man’s authority over woman is not meant to crush her, but to protect her, just as God lovingly but firmly leads us as his people.

I hope that Egalitarians reading this will prayerfully reconsider their beliefs, and truly think them through from a Biblical perspective. God gives us authority for our good, not for our demise.

Only by submitting to God’s authority in all areas of our life, whether they are civil authorities, church authorities, our managers at work, as well as the authority that God has established in the marriage and in the home can we truly find peace and be pleasing to God.

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Why does the Bible call Woman the Weaker Vessel?

Why does the Bible call Woman the Weaker Vessel?

potter-making-clay-jug-s

In my last post in this series on Christian Egalitarianism I alluded to the Bible calling woman “the weaker vessel”.

I understand that when we say “weaker” that seems like an insult to many women. But God’s Word does not see it that way:

“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)

Most people are instantly drawn to the word “weaker”, but let’s first look at the word “vessel”. We need to understand that as human beings we are born into “vessels”. Our souls are equal, but our vessels are not. Our vessels are made for different purposes.

Consider the similarities and differences between this minivan and then the military truck next to it.

photodune-1783948-silver-van-s Military truck

Do we think that a person driving a minivan is any less than a person driving this tough military truck? Of course not, it is only the vehicle or “vessel” they are driving.

In the same way that a minivan is made to carry a family, women have vessels that are designed by God to carry and care for children. Just as this military truck is made tougher for hard work, and it will take a much bigger beating than a minivan, so too a man is built stronger and tougher than a woman, and his body is built for work, as opposed to caring for children.

But just as man and woman are both human beings, both of these are automobiles.  Just as a man and woman both have hearts and lungs and almost all the same organs(except for reproductive organs), both of these vehicles have engines, transmissions and tires that make these vehicles move using the same basic principles.

But would anyone be insulted if someone told them their minivan was not as tough as this truck? Of course not! Each vehicle is built for a very different purpose, just as God has built men and women’s bodies for very different purposes.

Many commentators have tried to go out of their way to say here in I Peter that “weaker” does not really mean “weaker”, but that is exactly what it means in the Greek. But also notice that God calls husbands to honor their wives as weaker vessels.

What God is saying is this – “Men I want you to recognize that your wife is not as strong as you, both emotionally and physically. You need to be considerate of those qualities, and appreciate those qualities for the many ways they help her to be a good wife and mother. Don’t belittle her for being weaker or more fragile than you, but instead honor her position as your wife and the mother of your children.”

I truly believe this is the truth that God is trying to communicate to husbands, if we take I Peter 3:7 literally, as we should.

Speaking of the “weaker vessel” some Christian Egalitarians have tried to say “ezer” actually means “power” or “strength”. While it may take on that meaning in certain contexts we must also understand that words take on different meanings within their context, and we have to look as a whole to see if women in the Bible are presented as symbols of strength and power.

When Barak begged the prophetess Deborah to go with him into battle she said:

She said, “I will surely go with you; nevertheless, the honor shall not be yours on the journey that you are about to take, for the Lord will sell Sisera into the hands of a woman.” Then Deborah arose and went with Barak to Kedesh.”

Judges 4:9(NASB)

She did not want to go, and when she said the honor would not be his, but that God would hand their enemies “into the hands of a woman” this was meant as a slap in the face to the Barak and his men.

“O My people! Their oppressors are children,

And women rule over them.

O My people! Those who guide you lead you astray

And confuse the direction of your paths.”

Isaiah 3:12(NASB)

When God said through the prophet that Israel’s oppressors were children, and women ruled over them, that in no way conveys that women were symbols of strength and leadership. It was a slap in the face to Israel, to say they were so weak that children oppressed them, and women ruled over them.

While God praises many godly women in the Bible, women are never presented as symbols of strength and power in the Bible. Instead the Bible emphasizes the love of women as well as the compassion and care that women do so well.

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Christian Egalitarianism’s rebellion against male authority

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Why did God make woman so opposite of man?

Why did God make woman so opposite of man?

CompareManWoman

In my last post in my series on Christian Egalitarianism, we showed why I believe KENEGDO in Genesis 2’s “help meet” means that woman was made “opposite or different” than man.

Just look around you today and you will see our culture trying to minimize or deny the significant differences between men women, both physiologically and psychologically. They deny God’s natural design and order as Paul speaks about in Romans 1:

“18 For the wrath of God is revealed from heaven against all ungodliness and unrighteousness of men who suppress the truth in unrighteousness, 19 because that which is known about God is evident within them; for God made it evident to them. 20 For since the creation of the world His invisible attributes, His eternal power and divine nature, have been clearly seen, being understood through what has been made, so that they are without excuse.”

Romans 1:18-20(NASB)

How can anyone say with a straight face that men and women are equal outside of their common humanity and their souls? Let me remind you of these differences I stated in the last post:

Men have external sex organs Women have internal sex organs
Men’s bodies are built for strength and endurance(they have more muscle mass, tougher skin, more red blood cells and experience less pain because have fewer pain receptors in their skin) Women’s bodies are built for beauty, comfort and caregiving and they are more sensitive to pain than men are.
Men are systemizers Women empathizers
Men have tougher skin Women have softer skin
Men see less colors Women see a broader range of colors
Men have faster reflexes and can track moving objects better Women are better at multitasking
Men are competitive Women are cooperative
Men are task oriented Women are relationally oriented
Men are risk takers Women are more cautious

 

It can be “clearly seen, being understood through what has been made” (Romans 1:20) that women and men were designed for very DIFFERENT purposes and roles. To deny this is to deny a self-evident truth.

I believe based upon Romans chapter 1 that we as Christians should not stand silently by as groups claiming the Christian name, seek to minimize or deny God’s distinct design of and his roles for men and women. We should be angry at such a perversion of God’s purposes, just as he shows he was angry when men perverted what he had made.

As an American, I believe in the right of every person to believe what they will. But as a Christian we are called to defend the truth, and call out false teaching where we see it. Most Christians, and especially Bible believing Pastors, need to stand up and call out this teaching for what it is – heresy pure and simple.

I believe the answer to why God made woman so opposite from man can be found in this verse:

“Neither was the man created for the woman; but the woman for the man.”

I Corinthians 11:9(KJV)

We can see from both Genesis 2 and I Corinthians 11 that God created woman for man. When we understand this principle, then we understand that God created a helper for Adam, who was not just his mirror opposite, but someone whose opposite attributes would complement Adam.

Adam needed someone who would be able to bear and care for his children, he need someone to care for his home while he hunted and worked the fields. God not only made woman with the natural ability to become pregnant and after birth be able to feed the child from her breasts, but he also gave woman the emotional ability to empathize and work with children in a way most men are incapable of doing.

A woman should never be mocked for being emotional (as some men do), because this a gift from God which enables her to be the perfect mother, as well as great caregiver to the sick and elderly.

But God did not just give women breasts for feeding children, he gave them breasts for the pleasure and comfort of man. Human females are the only mammals who have constantly protruding breasts, even when they are not pregnant or nursing children.

Because men are so visually wired by God, he made a woman’s body for beauty, not for toughness and endurance the way a man’s body is built.

But besides these practical differences, God also created woman for spiritual and symbolic reasons. God created man in his image, to exercise God’s leadership, provision and protection qualities. But man needed a person, not just some animal, which would allow him to exercise these traits. Woman was perfectly designed by God to fulfill this role as the recipient of man’s leadership, provision and protection, and to provide him with the perfect helper and companion.

God could have made men and women much more similar than he did. He could have made women just as strong, and with the exact same nature and abilities, but he did not. God purposefully made woman weaker and more fragile (both emotionally and physically) than man, so that she would need his leadership, protection and provision.

In my next post in this series on Christian Egalitarianism, I will talk in more detail about the Bible calling woman “the weaker vessel”.

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Why does the Bible call woman the weaker vessel?

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What did God mean when he called woman a help meet for man?

What did God mean when he called woman a help meet for man?

wife gives her husband a meal 

Previously we discussed Egalitarian beliefs surrounding the word “Ezer”. This word is used in the Hebrew language that the Old Testament was originally written in. Most English translations of the Bible translate the Hebrew word Ezer as “helper” or “help”.

Ezer occurs 21 times throughout various Old Testament books. In most of these instances, Ezer is referring to God as man’s “help” or “helper”. Here are a few examples:

“But I am poor and needy: make haste unto me, O God: thou art my help [EZER] and my deliverer ; O LORD, make no tarrying .”

Psalm 70:5(KJV)

“My help[EZER] cometh from the LORD, which made heaven and earth.”

Psalm 121:2(KJV)

In both of the above passages, as well as most of the other passages where Ezer is used, we can see that Ezer seems to be referring to help coming from God. However there some passages where Ezer does not refer to God’s help, but to man’s help.

Isaiah 30 is a prophesy talking about Israel looking to Egypt for help, but this would be a futile attempt according to the prophet:

“They were all ashamed of a people that could not profit them, nor be an help[EZER] nor profit , but a shame, and also a reproach.”

In this case, EZER is referring the fact that the Egyptians would not a “help”, or EZER, to the Israelites.

So while most instances of EZER refer to God’s help, it sometimes also refers to men helping other men. But for the Egalitarian, the most important use of EZER in the Bible comes at the very beginning, in the creation account when God created woman:

“20 And the Lord God said, It is not good that the man should be alone; I will make him an help [EZER] meet [k’enegdo] for him… And the Lord God caused a deep sleep to fall upon Adam, and he slept: and he took one of his ribs, and closed up the flesh instead thereof;

21 And the Lord God caused a deep sleep to fall upon Adam, and he slept: and he took one of his ribs, and closed up the flesh instead thereof;

22 And the rib, which the Lord God had taken from man, made he a woman, and brought her unto the man.

23 And Adam said, This is now bone of my bones, and flesh of my flesh: she shall be called Woman, because she was taken out of Man.”

Genesis 2:20-23(KJV)

The Egalitarian interpretation of Ezer from Genesis chapter 2

Below are some typical Egalitarian interpretations of Hebrew word Ezer:

“Ezer is used 20 times in the Old Testament: seventeen times to describe God and three times to describe a military ally or aide. “Help” or “helper” is an adequate translation, but English has different nuances than the Hebrew does. In English “helper” implies someone who is learning, or under a person in authority. In the Hebrew “help” comes from one who has the power to give help—it refers to someone in a superior position. That is why God can help Israel: he has the power to do so. God helps Israel because they do not have the power to help themselves.”

Source: http://www.cbeinternational.org/blogs/does-it-really-mean-helpmate

“Adam was regarded by his Creator as incomplete and deficient as he lived at first without the benefit of a proper counterpart. He was without community. God said: “It is not good for the man to be alone” (Gen 2:18). So, as Ecclesiastes 4:9-11 expressed it, “Two are better than one….” Accordingly, in order to end man’s loneliness, God formed “for Adam [a] suitable helper” (Gen 2:18)-or at least that is the way most have rendered the Hebrew word ‘ēzer.

Now, there is nothing pejorative about the translation “helper”, for the same word is used for God, but it is also variously translated as “strength”, as in “He is your shield and helper [=strength] (‘ēzer)” in Deuteronomy 33:29; 33:26.

But R. David Freedman has argued quite convincingly that our Hebrew Word ‘ēzer is a combination of two older Hebrew/Canaanite roots, one ‘-z-r, meaning “to rescue, to save,” and the other, ģ-z-r, meaning “to be strong,” to use their verbal forms for the moment.”

Source: http://walterckaiserjr.com/women.html

 

A Complementarian response to the word “Ezer” in Genesis chapter 2

The Bible tells us that woman was created as an EZER KENEGDO, or a “help meet” for man. Modern translations often translate this as “helper suitable” for man. For Egalitarians this phrase is one of the cornerstones of how they interpret the entire Bible as it relates to God’s intention for men and women.

Let’s first address the “Ezer” in the room. I agree that “help” or “helper” does not always mean the person doing the helping is a subordinate. For instance, maybe someone is new cashier at a store and they need their manager to come over and “help” them with something that does not make the manager any less their authority because he is helping them.

So when God called Eve Adam’s helper, that in and of itself did not mean she was his subordinate. Ezer does not refer to position, it refers to function. The person helping someone may be an authority, an equal or subordinate.

But what is the full context surrounding the “help meet” of Genesis chapter 2? Context and Scripture interpreting Scripture are critical. While “Ezer” does not tell us Eves position (as an authority, an equal or a subordinate) to Adam, the surrounding context DOES tell us her position.

In Genesis 2 Adam names the animals, an act of authority given him by God. Then he names his wife “Eve”, another act of authority.  In the Scriptures while mothers sometimes named their children as Leah did with Issachar(Genesis 30:18) we see that fathers always had the final say in naming and sometimes overrode the names their wives gave to their children as in this case:

And it came to pass, as her soul was in departing, (for she died) that she called his name Benoni: but his father called him Benjamin.”

Genesis 35:18 (KJV)

So when we look at mothers naming their children – the naming of their child was in essence a suggestion which had to be validated and finalized by the father.  The father always had the final say in the naming of a child because of his authority over both his wife and his children.

Furthermore, in Genesis 3:16 God said:

“Unto the woman he said, I will greatly multiply thy sorrow and thy conception; in sorrow thou shalt bring forth children; and thy desire shall be to thy husband, and he shall rule over thee.”

Egalitarians are quick to say that Genesis 3:16 proves that Adam and Eve were meant to be equal originally, and that him ruling over her was only because of sin in the garden and was temporary until Christ came, this where they try and use Galatians 3:28 to say Christ “restored” what they believe was the original equality between men and women:

“There is neither Jew nor Greek, there is neither bond nor free, there is neither male nor female: for ye are all one in Christ Jesus.”

Galatians 3:28(KJV)

The problem with the Egalitarian interpretation of Galatians 3:28 is that it written by the same Apostle Paul who wrote these words:

“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)

“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.”

Ephesians 5:22-24(KJV)

And one of Paul’s fellow Apostles (Peter) wrote:

“Likewise, ye wives, be in subjection to your own husbandsEven 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)

So in one passage Paul says there is no male or female in Christ, yet in all these other passages he says men are the head over women, and wives are to be in subjection to their husbands. Some Egalitarians have actually said Paul was simply being inconsistent with his own teachings – a direct attack on Biblical inerrancy.  Others explain away the phrasing in these passages, write parts of them off as scribal additions that were added many years after the Apostles died.

So going back to Genesis 3:16 where God said Adam would rule over Eve, he also mentioned Eve conceiving children in pain. It is clear from the context that “the pain” was the curse, not Eve’s ability to bear children. So it is an incorrect interpretation of Genesis 3:16 to say everything in it, including man ruling over woman is all part of the curse.

In fact Ephesians 5:22-24 shows that man’s ruling over woman is meant as a beautiful picture of Christ ruling over his Church, not as part of the curse of sin.

So if Galatians 3:28 does not get rid of God’s distinct roles for men and women, what is it referring to?

When we look at Galatians 3:28 in it’s larger context, we can see what is really is talking about:

“7 Understand, then, that those who have faith are children of Abraham. Scripture foresaw that God would justify the Gentiles by faith, and announced the gospel in advance to Abraham: “All nations will be blessed through you.”[ So those who rely on faith are blessed along with Abraham, the man of faith…

26 So in Christ Jesus you are all children of God through faith, 27 for all of you who were baptized into Christ have clothed yourselves with Christ. 28 There is neither Jew nor Gentile, neither slave nor free, nor is there male and female, for you are all one in Christ Jesus. 29 If you belong to Christ, then you are Abraham’s seed, and heirs according to the promise.

Galatians 3:7-9 & 26-29(NIV)

Rather than obliterating God’s gender roles as Egalitarians suggest Galatians 3:28 does, it is a statement referring to the oneness of all those of faith from Abraham to Christ.  We are all the children of faith, if we believe as Abraham did. God fulfilled his promise to Abraham that all nations would be blessed by his seed(Christ).

So spiritually speaking, there is no difference between a man and woman, a Jew and a Gentile, a slave or a free man, we are all brothers and sisters in Christ.  However physically speaking, while we live in this world these differences still exist. You have to write off a lot of Scripture to say this passage gets rid of God’s divinely created gender roles.

What does KENEGDO mean in Genesis 2?

But what does KENEGDO really mean? This word when transliterated is “Neged” and generally means “in front of, or opposite to”. We can see other usages of this word these passages:

“Now it came about when Joshua was by Jericho, that he lifted up his eyes and looked, and behold, a man was standing opposite [Neged] him with his sword drawn in his hand, and Joshua went to him and said to him, “Are you for us or for our adversaries?”

Joshua 5:13(NASB)

“I will set no worthless thing before [Neged] my eyes; I hate the work of those who fall away; It shall not fasten its grip on me.”

Psalm 101:3(NASB)

“There is no wisdom and no understanding And no counsel against [Neged] the LORD.”

Psalm 54:3(NASB)

Nothing in KENEGDO translates to a “helper equal to man” as Egalitarians often preach. Nothing in KENEGDO means equality.

I believe the best interpretation of EZER KENEGDO is “a helper who is man’s opposite”. That translation makes a lot of sense when you really think about how God made man and woman as I have mentioned many of these differences on this site many times.

Look at all these opposite attributes of men and women:

Men have external sex organs Women have internal sex organs
Men’s bodies are built for strength and endurance(they have more muscle mass, tougher skin, more red blood cells and experience less pain because have fewer pain receptors in their skin) Women’s bodies are built for beauty, comfort and caregiving and they are more sensitive to pain than men are.
Men are systemizers Women empathizers
Men have tougher skin Women have softer skin
Men see less colors Women see a broader range of colors
Men have faster reflexes and can track moving objects better Women are better at multitasking
Men are competitive Women are cooperative
Men are task oriented Women are relationally oriented
Men are risk takers Women are more cautious

I could go on with the many ways that men and women are indeed opposites, but you get the point.

But then you have to ask the question, why did God make woman so opposite of man? Was it just to give some variety to the world? In my next in this series on Christian Egalitarianism post we will discuss some reasons why God made woman so opposite of man.

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Why did God make woman so opposite of man?

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What did God mean when he called woman a help meet for man?