"I went to Jerusalem to become acquainted (Gk. istoria) with Cephas" - Paul's words from Galatians 1:18.

Who Has the "Authority" in a Marriage--the Husband or the Wife?

I was recently reading John McArthur's blog Grace to You, and came across a comment with several questions that I found interesting. I did not see any attempt to answer the lady's questions, so I thought I would respond here at Grace and Truth to You.  The woman wrote:

"I am concerned about a marriage situation in which the husband is a ob/gyn doctor. He believes they should not use birth control and delivers all their children at home. She is exhausted with the load of the continual pregnancies and the little ones. He is not willing to allow her to have outside help in the home. She would like to be able to limit the pregnancies. He rules! She submits. How does this fit in with God's balance of the man loving the woman? What are her options in this type of marriage? How can she disagree and be biblically correct? Any insights on this? I would love to hear them."

McArthur, Piper and other conservative Bible scholars I admire are fond of referring to the husband's "authority" over his wife. There is only one place in the entire New Testament, however, where the word "authority" (exousia) is used in reference to the husband and wife--I Corinthians 7:4:

"The wife has not authority (exousia) over her own body, but the husband. In the same manner, the husband has not authority (exousia) over his body, but the wife."

Authority in the marriage seems to be mutual between husband and wife. Paul goes on to affirm mutual authority by saying in the next verse that the sexual union in marriage is an act requring "mutual consent" or agreement. The Greek word is "symphonou" from which we get our the English word "symphony." In an orchestra there is harmony in the symphony when all instruments are played at the right time and the right place with mutual understanding and agreement. There is a discordant and disharmonious symphony if even one instrument strikes out on its own against the wishes of the rest.

So it is in marriage. The Bible is quite clear in its answer to the lady's questions above.

(1). There is no sexual union unless both the husband and wife agree.
(2). Multiple childbirths requires mutual consent, not the demands of one.
(3). Disagreement in marriage is not only biblical, it is expected, thus the instructions of I Corinthians 7.
(4). The loving spouse will honor the wishes of the one being loved and wait for mutual consent.
(5). Authority and submission, according to the sacred text, is mutual in the husband and wife relationship.

It's ironic to me that many inerrantists seem to want the sacred text to say that which it doesn't. It's time we actually believed the Bible and obeyed it.

In His Grace,

Wade

122 comments:

Bob Cleveland said...

I take a more conventional .. and perhaps uneducated .. approach to the submissive wife thing, and the "headship" of the husband. But I am absolutely committed to, and adamant when I speak of, the fact that the husband is commanded to love His wife as Christ loved the church and gave Himself up for her.

And, that we're to live with our wives in an understanding way, or according to knowledge.

Any husband who does not do that, and it sure sounds as if the OB-GYN guy does NOT, has no place demanding anything of his wife. He's just plain disobedient to God.

Wade Burleson said...

Good word Bob

John Wylie said...

Wade,

While I do think that the OB-GYN is absolutely wrong, this is a prime example of an extreme case. Your use of 1 Cor. 7:3-5 is certainly correct and applied well to this issue. But I'm sorry I don't buy into Jon Zen's line about headship not meaning authority and the word submit not meaning submit. There are too many scriptures that clearly teach that even though men and women are equal in Christ, the husband is to lead in the home. (This list is too long to post here)

Gal. 3:28 is often misapplied in this issue in a ridiculous manner. This verse is talking about our position in Christ not our station in life.

Submission to authority in no way diminishes a person. We must do it at work, at school, when the police officer pulls us over, and when we pay our taxes. As a matter of fact Christ is a prime example of submission. Phil. 2:4-11 He was exalted by the Father for it. Submission is an adornment according to 1 Peter 3:1-6.

I know I'm about to be the most hated guy on this list of comments, but this is no more than rebellion and allowing current cultural trends to determine what we believe. When other sins become more in vogue we'll rewrite and reinterpret the Bible to accommodate them as well.

WTJeff said...

As I see it, isn't the "headship" issue about leadership? Leaders don't command and demand, but their authority is rarely questioned because they lead effectively both in wisdom and by example. Husbands are to love their wives like Christ loved the church. If we husbands did a better job of loving our wives as Christ loves His bride, and set the example we are supposed to, I don't think this would be the issue some make of it.

Thy Peace said...

Posts in this blog relevant to "headship" ...

The Only Time the Bible Uses the Word "Authority" (exousia) in the Context of Marriage Should Lead Couples to Cherish Unity

An Exhaustive Study on the Meaning of "Head:" Are Women Really Free To Function Freely?

Honoring God in a City Full of Needy Children Rather than a Quiverfull of Separatist Children: Exposing the Biblical Holes in Quiverfull Theology

God Calls Patriarchal Headship A Sinful Desire

Patriarchy and the Family Integrated Church Emphasis in SBC Seminaries: A Potential Embarrassment for the SBC

And What Is It About Patriarchy That Scares Us?

Church Authority: What It Is And What It Is Not

Wade Burleson said...

Thy Peace,

You shall heretofore be known as "The Prince" of Grace and Truth to You. :)

Thanks for the links.

Thy Peace said...

Missed this one ...

Are the Sisters Free to Function? by Jon Zens

Thy Peace said...

Suzanne's Bookshelf [Suzanne McCarthy] > Posts of "kephale"

Josh from FL said...

Though I'd agree that submission isn't supposed to diminish a person, the interpretation of the Christian marriage model sometimes does just that.

We can SAY that man and woman are equal, but if I give my dog better treatment, then my ACTIONS communicate that I'm lying.

It's sad if I acquiesce to the requests of my dog (give food, allow rest, take outside, spend quality time) better than my wife.
It's a tragedy if I think my dog deserves to sit next to me in the car while my wife rides in the back.

My wife and I just had our first child. Though she's on maternity leave and I'm still working and though it's "her job" to raise the children, I consider her needs above my own. At the same time, she knows I have to be up early for work so doesn't wish for me to be up at all hours of the night.

The end result - our disagreements are the desire for the other to well and happy. =)

Regardless of how we men feel "submission" should be defined, we should all recognize what it means to love our wife "as Christ loves His church".

Wade Burleson said...

Really good word Josh.

Anonymous said...

I agree with the result reached here, though not with all the analysis.

First, this woman's husband is being unreasonable. Too bad she is married to a man like this.

But the instructions given to married men and women in the Bible are different. They are not the same. They are not mirror images.

The husband is the head of the wife as Christ is the head of the church. That is a tough verse to figure out in all of its fullness.

The difficult part is harmonizing all of the instructions given to married men and women, including the mutual submission passage with the other passages that are distinctly different. The mutual submission passage don't "swallow up" all of the other things that are said. Otherwise, the other passages would be superfluous, let alone without any force.

I have been married 23 years, and admittedly don't have a handle on all of this.

But this husband is unreasonable.

Even if the scripture is to be interpreted regarding authority as the husband suggests, he does not get a "pass" on any unreasonable interpretation he holds.

Louis

Wade Burleson said...

Louis,

You make a good point about the husband being unreasonable.

However, it is usually the theology of a person that drives their actions.

For example, Christians who believe men should be in "authority" over women and women should never be in "authority" over men, base their beliefs on their interpretation--albeit false interpretation--of the Word of God.

The same could be said about Christians who believe a woman should never teach a man or be in leadership where men are present; they base their views on a faulty interpretation of Scripture.

So, though you call this Dr. "unreasonable," he most likely would respond, "No. I am being Biblical."

Therefore, in order to help the Dr. see that he is not being biblical, one must show him the passages that speak of "mutual authority" (I Cor. 7:4) and "mutual submission" (Eph. 5:21), and suggest that his interpretation of passages that lead him to believe only the male has "authority" and "leadership" in relationships is a faulty interpretation.

And then show him textually an interpretation that is consistent with the clear teaching of mutuality and equality in the husband/wife relationship.

Anonymous said...

Wade:

I do not disagree. This husband is unreasonable because he holds some unreasonable positions.

The context of my concern was a general concern that other concepts get some analysis,not necessarily by you.

Thanks for your response. We are much closer to agreement than my comment may have indicated. Hope you are well.

The new picture for your blog post is awesome.

Take care.

Louis

Mr. Hyde said...

The key interpretive factor that people too often miss or completely gloss over is the command for "husbands, love your wives, just as Christ loved the church and gave himself up for her...husbands ought to love their wives as their own bodies" (Eph 5:25ff.)

If this is not a hypothetical situation and this husband is truly acting in this manner, then he is not fulfilling his biblical role. As I see it, Epehsians makes it clear that a husbands "authority" is directly derived from his obedience to the command to love his wife as Christ loved the church. That is a sacrificial love. Christ put his own needs, wants, and desires beneath those of the church. This husband doesn't sound like he is practicing that. Therefore, I would say that he has no autorithy.

The difficult part is trying to figure out how she addresses this problem with her husband. That is something that I beleive only she would know best how to do. She knows his personality, what would trigger his defenses, what would bring them down, and what would be the most effective way to bring this problem out in the open.

Lydia said...

The Dr. is being totally reasonable based upon his (or what he has been taught) interpretation of scripture. His behavior concerning gender 'roles' is a logical conclusion when Christianity is reduced to a doctrine of authority/submission.

Who is fighting for last place? Where are the lowly servants?

Our clear cut authorities are the civil government as in boss, elected officials and of course parents of children.

But adults in the Body of Christ and in marriage? What could the possible meaning of ONE FLESH UNION mean if there is a boss/employee attitude?

The problem we have in Christendom has more to do with those who want to teach authority within the Body. Why do we assume the husband or pastor is more spiritually mature?

Some actually think they will be blessed to follow a title (husband, pastor, leader) no matter their spiritual maturity or behavior.

We follow Christ. Not humans.

Wade Burleson said...

Mr. Hyde,

Amen.

Lydia,

Amen too!

B Nettles said...

Wade,
While there is debate about your interpretation of authority, I don't think that this nominal husband's theology can be deemed correct by anyone, whether they agree with you or not. You say, "Therefore, in order to help the Dr. see that he is not being biblical, one must show him the passages that speak of 'mutual authority'..." I believe it's even easier than that to make the point that he is wrong.

Most "man rules wife" interpreters start with Eph 5:22, (which screams that they have an agenda). The context demands that you start at least as far back as Eph. 5:1, being imitators of God, not walking like the world. Even if one backs up one verse to 5:21 we see "be subject to one another IN FEAR OF CHRIST." Not even elders in the church are allowed to be all powerful (1 Pet 5:1-4).

Secondly, the statement of 5:22 is addressed to wives, not to husbands. It does NOT say, "Husbands, rule your wives, forcing her into submission in every area." The responsibility is put upon the wife. The husband is commanded (5:25) to love his wife as Christ loved the called-out-ones...following the picture of Hosea and Gomer, the husband loves his wife whether she is submissive or not. His job is to love her and lead, not jail and enslave her. He is to be subject to her by loving her, something that the world of Ephesus probably didn't recognize.

If this OB-GYN is more insistent on paying attention to supervising his wife's obedience than he is on giving himself to lift her up and treat her as a fine china vase (1 Pet 3:7), he is un-Biblical, whether she is or not. He has no basis for enforcing anything for having failed in one point (loving her) he has failed in all. He is not longer a "husband" in the original sense of the word.

And where is the local church that is not disciplining this guy for not loving his wife?

Jon L. Estes said...

Bob, You state:

"the husband is commanded to love His wife as Christ loved the church and gave Himself up for her."

Where in Christs love does Christ compromise his leadership to wait till the wife (church) is in agreement?

I know a man who was being called to another pastorate but chose not to go because his wife's job. She did not want to leave it or it was a new business type venture she did not want to give up. So the pastor, husband, said "no".

Now, maybe God didn't call the man but this was the explanation given.

Does a husband set God's call upon his life aside for the sake of his wife?

Jon L. Estes said...

Genesis 3:17 says... Adam, you submitted to your wife's instructions and that was WRONG.

Jon L. Estes said...

"As I see it, isn't the "headship" issue about leadership? Leaders don't command and demand, but their authority is rarely questioned because they lead effectively both in wisdom and by example. Husbands are to love their wives like Christ loved the church. If we husbands did a better job of loving our wives as Christ loves His bride, and set the example we are supposed to, I don't think this would be the issue some make of it."

I like your comments but the theme from some here is there is no human leadership in the home. Man and woman are equal in everything, role, leadership, decisions...

If one disagrees on a direction the other is to wait for them out of love. Not a great idea in a fallen world but hey, if men don't want to be spiritual leaders they won't be. They will choose to be mamby pamby men when it comes to the will of God.

traveller said...

Man and Woman, One in Christ: An Exegetical and Theological Study of Paul's Letters by Philip B. Payne is the most detailed, scholarly single volume on this topic I have read or seen. Whether you agree with his conclusions, which I do, this is the most comprehensive dealing with the subject. You can find it here: http://www.amazon.com/Man-Woman-One-Christ-Theological/dp/0310219884/ref=sr_1_1?s=books&ie=UTF8&qid=1283450997&sr=1-1

Jon L. Estes said...

"For example, Christians who believe men should be in "authority" over women and women should never be in "authority" over men, base their beliefs on their interpretation--albeit false interpretation--of the Word of God."

An interesting way to say... I am right, if you disagree you are wrong.

One question Wade... Is this a tertiary issue?

I would hope if it is, we could at least agree to disagree without saying the ones who disagree have false interpretations.

When we do this we make our interpretation a primary truth.

Doug said...

Insightful and right on as usual. Glad to have you back!

John Fariss said...

All Christians (regardless of theological bent) want to think that we base what we believe upon rationality--that it is entirely rational to believe such-and-such a verse means so-and-so, and that we then base our actions/behavior on that. Truth is though--at least as I see it--our theology is often a mere rationalization for unspoken and often unarticulated desires and/or personality traits. I suspect (and rather strongly, though based on limited information) that the husband is really into control, and that his personality is the classic "dictator" or "drill sargeant" type--which, unfortunantly, fits right into his chosen profession. Consequently, while the man may be genuinely be a Christian, his personality drives him to adopt a perspective which then justifies his personality and/or desires. It becomes a closed circle.

Too many pastors have the same drive/desire/personality, and because they have the same dictator/drill sargeant style, adopt a theology which likewise justifies what they wanted to do anyway. Hence we have the pastor CEO model. I know of one who has the framed words "THE BOSS" over his office door, and he (not a search or personnel committee) hires and fires all the staff, both ministerial and vocational.

Maybe it's just me, but it seems to me that Fundamentalism (capital "F") lends itself to this interplay of unspoken, unarticulated desires and the iblcal justification for them.

Glad you're back Wade!


John

James Hunt said...

Wade,

First of all, I am personally thrilled that you're back posting!

Regarding your current post I will have to say, "Yes" and "No". Yes, I do agree with you on the following points:

1. Someone should give an answer to that lady who's married to the guy touting his authority
2. The passage in 1 Corinthians 7 certainly is presenting a mutual authority regarding matters of sexual union in marriage.
3. HOWEVER - I have a different take on the issue of submission. Husband and wife are definitely to be mutually submissive...just not to each other. They are to be mutually submissive to Lord Jesus. The way this mutual submission to the Lord is practiced in the home is through the wife's voluntary submission to the Christ-like servant-leadership of the husband. The way the husband submits to the Lord in marriage is by loving his bride in the manner of Christ loving his bride, the Church. This results in a husband not demanding or demeaning his wife... in a husband keeping his wife's needs, thoughts, desires, opinions in full consideration and treating her as one who has equal worth in the sight of God. Husband and wife both should view each other as one of God's primary means of molding each into Christlikeness.

Further thoughts:

1. I know you are responding to the stupid idea that husbands are the dominant ones and the wife's are mousey little submissive creatures. I applaud you for this. Someone needs to point out the errors of those who feel this way.

2. The context of Ephesians 5:22-33 and 1 Peter 3:1-7 demonstrates that what is being presented is true submission within authority structures set up by God. Just look at the surrounding text in Ephesians as well as preceding verses in 1 Peter.

God bless you.

Thy Peace said...

Lionel Woods > MEN, WOMEN & EQUALITY IN CHRIST: A Bible Conference

Sept 19-22, Emmanuel Baptist Church, 2505 West Owen K Garriott Rd, Enid, OK 73703-5299 (church phone 580-237-0602)

For information contact Jon Zens, jzens@searchingtogether.org or 715-338-2796; or Wade Burleson, wwburleson@hotmail.com

Jon will be giving eight 30 minute sessions, starting Sunday night, with Q & A.


Lionel Woods > Allow Me To Introduce….. Jon Zens
-----------------------------------
Frank Viola on Jon Zens

If you have the opportunity to hear Zens live, don’t miss it. I put him in the top 5 most important Christians of our time with a message that’s Christ-centered, unique, and hugely needed in this era of church history.

Note to the new Reformed people: If you’re a fan of John Piper, Mark Driscoll, Matt Chandler and company, don’t miss Zens. He’s a graduate of Westminster Seminary and has endorsements from John Frame. And his message is vital.

elastigirl said...

Jon L. Estes, why in the world does it not appear to enter your mind that just maybe it is "the wife" who is the one being "called"?? That God just might be calling the wife to developing this new business venture?? That God just might be wanting to do something powerful and wonderful that will impact many people directly and indirectly through what this woman can do in this business venture?

Is it because it simply is not possible?
Is it because she’s a woman??
Is it because she’s not a pastor?

I say God “calls” (hate that word) men and women to partner with Him to do powerful and wonderful and life changing things in EVERY field, in
EVERY capacity. That someone would conclude pastoring by a man to be God’s preferred method for His doings in the world seems.... ridiculous is not a strong enough word.

Jon Estes said...

"why in the world does it not appear to enter your mind that just maybe it is "the wife" who is the one being "called"?? That God just might be calling the wife to developing this new business venture??"

I didn't say it couldn't have been that. I did say...

"I know a man who was being called to another pastorate but chose not to go because his wife's job."

These are the words spoken to me by members at the church. I believe the man who chose this path posts on this blog. If he wants to tell more or clarify, he can. I doubt he will, doing so his church could find out he had been looking (though it was a while back).

Wade Burleson said...

Jon L. Estes,

This issue is most definitely tertiary.

Believing rightly or wrongly on the subject does not jeopardize the soul's entrance to heaven.

:)

Jon Estes said...

"This issue is most definitely tertiary.

Believing rightly or wrongly on the subject does not jeopardize the soul's entrance to heaven."

So saying to the one who has a different interpretation that theirs is false... How does this build community, fellowship?

Wade Burleson said...

James Hunt,

I definitely agree with your observations about mutual submission to Christ.

The passage in question, however, seems to indicate there is mutual submission to one another (my comments below)

Eph. 5:21 - "be subject to one another in honor of Christ, wives to your husbands as to the Lord (and husbands to your wives as to the Lord) ... Husbands love your wives just as Christ loved the church (so too wives, love your husbands as Christ loved the church)."

In other words, since the immediate context of Ephesians 5 speaks of "mutual submission" and the Bible constantly speaks of Christians loving one another (both male and female), just because Paul singles out wives to illustrate submission and husbands to illustrate love does not negate the servant spirit (submission) of the husband nor the loving spirit of the wife.

Thanks for the comment.

Wade Burleson said...

Jon,

On Wednesday nights this fall I am teaching the egalitarian intepretation of I Corinthians 7 and Ephesians 5 and I Timothy 2, etc.. and one of our associate pastors, Ted Kuschel (Th.M from Dallas) is teaching the complementarian interpretation of the same passages, the same night.

We alternate who goes first and who goes second. We both will spend 15 to 20 minutes in exegeting the passages in question, and then we open it up for questions and dialogue.

When I teach I begin by saying, "I could be wrong. Ted could be right. I don't think I'm wrong, and I don't think Ted's right. But because this is a tertiary issue and not a matter of fellowship, we have a great time discussing these matters."

Someone asked last night: "Does this discussion ever move out of the theological and academia realm into the practical life of home and church?"

Response: Every day. A man who considers me a dear friend came to me very upset because "a woman was teaching from the Bible in a Sunday School class where men were present."

He was in his seventies. He had been taught that when Paul said "I forbid a woman to teach or exercise authority over a man" that he was giving a universal principle for all time, in all churches and in all homes.

I told him that I respected his interpretation of that passage, but disagreed with his interpretation of Paul's writing. I carefully explained my position that women taught men in the New Testament, women served as teachers, prophets, disciples, apostles, deacons and evangelists (showed him the passages), and that in the New Covenant, half the priesthood is female. I further explained to him that the gifts of the Holy Spirit come upon His people irrespective of gender, and we will not forbid what Christ Himself allowed.

I then concluded by showing him very precisely the language of Paul in I Timothy 2 and that the prepositions of the passage indicate Paul was referring to "that" woman -- a specific problem with a specific woman that Timothy had asked Paul about in a previous communication. "That" woman, most likely a convert from the Diana cult where women were thought to be superior to men, was "not to take authority" or "to teach" in the church until she had been properly instructed and discipled in the ways of Christ.

My friend proceeded to tell me he did not agree with "my interpretation" of the text.

That's when I had the pleasure of giving him a great big bear hug and told him that it didn't make one bit of difference. He looked at me puzzled and said, "So will the woman continue to teach in Sunday School?"

I said, "Yes."

Because I believe my interpretation is right. :)

By the way, that woman Sunday School teacher continues to teach men to this day, and is one of the best morning Bible studies we offer.

Those strict complementarians who are uncomfortable with a woman leading men or teaching men would not be comfortable at Emmanuel. They could, however, attend other churches where leadership believed other than the way I do--and since we are all part of the family of Christ, we would welcome joint mission projects and other cooperative ministries with that church.

My friend ended up staying at our church. He just switched Sunday School classes.

Smiling.

Jon Estes said...

Great idea on the upcoming teaching.

You stated:

"When I teach I begin by saying, "I could be wrong. Ted could be right. I don't think I'm wrong, and I don't think Ted's right. But because this is a tertiary issue and not a matter of fellowship, we have a great time discussing these matters.""

But this is not what you stated earlier. Her eit is...

"Christians who believe men should be in "authority" over women and women should never be in "authority" over men, base their beliefs on their interpretation--albeit false interpretation--of the Word of God."

Oh, I will agree you stated it nicely and if spoken audibly it would have come off the same way but you still were saying... I am right, they are wrong. This is much different than your comment I quoted first.

Jon Estes said...

"So will the woman continue to teach in Sunday School?"

I said, "Yes."

"Because I believe my interpretation is right. :)"

And you are the authoritarian to make such decisions in your church.

I guess since you can't lead over your home you can find your place in the church body to do it. TIC! WINK! LOL!

Jon Estes said...

"Those strict complementarians who are uncomfortable with a woman leading men or teaching men would not be comfortable at Emmanuel. They could, however, attend other churches where leadership believed other than the way I do"

Over on the dog blog this is what they accuse the evil pastors of doing... "If you don't like it my way, go somewhere else."

I find this funny.

Lydia said...

Jon, you have a problem. Joanna, wife of Chuza, was not home tending to her husband and HIS mission. She was off with other women traveling around the region with Jesus and helping to take care of him financially.

"Now it came to pass, afterward, that He went through every city and village, preaching and bringing the glad tidings of the kingdom of God. And the twelve were with Him, 2 and certain women who had been healed of evil spirits and infirmities—Mary called Magdalene, out of whom had come seven demons, 3 and Joanna the wife of Chuza, Herod’s steward, and Susanna, and many others who provided for Him[a] from their substance."

It does not say whether her husband minded or not. But he did work for Herod. :o)

Jon Estes said...

"Jon, you have a problem. Joanna, wife of Chuza, was not home tending to her husband and HIS mission. She was off with other women traveling around the region with Jesus and helping to take care of him financially."

Please do tell me what my problem is. Please use my words to demonstrate the problem you say I have.

I don't want their to be any confusion, so put it out there. I'll speak directly to what I said so clarity is not a problem.

The problem could be in not being understood but this does not mean I have a problem.

Also, using the illustration you do, do you believe I stated that women should not work outside the home?

Christiane said...

Sounds like the doctor/husband of the poor woman is using scripture as an excuse to abuse her.

Not exactly an action that indicates the 'Spirit of the Lord' present in the doctor's life.

The give-a-way is that the wife is exhausted and the husband forbids her to have outside help in the home.

Thing is: an OB/GYN may have some tough insurance bills to pay for his practice, but he is still bringing home a pocket full . . . enough to care lovingly for his wife's needs, if he chose.

Very sad, this story.
Another case of someone 'indoctrinated',
but NOT by way of the Spirit of the Lord of All Compassion and Mercy. Very sad.

Lydia said...

"I don't want their to be any confusion, so put it out there. I'll speak directly to what I said so clarity is not a problem"

I do not think it is possible for the comp position to ever be clear or even logical if we look at the totality of the NC scripture. Even in the OC there is NO prohibition to women teaching men or leading anyone. So, it is strange to suggest there is a new law just for women in the OC.

The way many of you interpret Eph 5 communicates that you map yourself as a sort of Savior..to your wife.. taking a metaphor way too far. As of course, you are part of the Bride, too.

Lydia said...

"So saying to the one who has a different interpretation that theirs is false... How does this build community, fellowship?"

Great question for CBMW!

Christiane said...

off topic,
very sad news

http://www.oregonlive.com/news/index.ssf/2010/09/hood_river_baptist_minister_fi.html

First military chaplain to be killed since 1970 was a Baptist.

John Wylie said...

First of all, no doubt the husband is a jerk and is not living up to the command to love his wife as Christ loved the church. Wade I think very aptly applied the 1 Cor. 7 passage to the situation which is specifically talking about the sexual relationship.

But I disagree with the rest of his applications. There is no doubt that there is a proper order in marriage, there are just too many passages that make this clear. "But I want you to understand that the head of every man is Christ, the head of a wife is her husband, and the head of Christ is God." (1 Corinthians 11:3) To read this and the Eph. 5 passage and deny that the man and the woman have different roles in the marriage is mind boggling.

The complimentarian view is the biblical view. "Then the LORD God said, "It is not good that the man should be alone; I will make him a helper fit for him." (Genesis 2:18)
God created the woman as a helper fit for him. That doesn't mean she doesn't have rights or value, but it means she has a different role to fulfill.

Jon L. Estes said...

Lydia,

You ignored my question as to what my problem is, according to you. Do you dare deal with that?

Let me pose this:

God speaks to the family in relation to the structure of Christ to the church.

Husband (bridegroom - Christ)has authority over wife (bride - church)

If the wife is to be in equal authority or equal in leadership, how does this fit with the parallel God gives us for Christ and the church? Are we (the church) equal in leadership with Christ? Should we submit to His authority? should we teach Him?

Questions, not declarations...

John Wylie said...

Jon,

That's absolutely my point. Egalitarianism totally misses the whole point of Eph. 5. They don't mind stressing the husband's responsibility but then they deny the wife's responsibility.

Egalitarianism basically started as a social movement and has made its way into the modern church. Here's a good question, if Egalitarainism is true why does the US Armed Forces place less physical requirements on women than it does men? Why do many police forces do the same? They know that there are differences in men and women. I'm not saying she's inferior just different. If we acknowledge the differences complimetarianism is the logical conclusion.

Christiane said...

Hi JON WYLIE,

The strongest human muscle
is the uterus during labor.

Anonymous said...

John Wylie, I agree with you and am disappointed that what you said was ignored. This is an extreme case, and though this is a guy (mythical?) who sinfully abuses his authority and who maybe all of us would like to kick in the shin, it does not take away from the fact that God designed men to lead the home and the church. Surprisingly, this discussion of “men and their authority” sounds like one that could be going on in liberal academia somewhere, lol.

In reading the words in Ephesians 5:22-33, it is clear to me that we as men have a challenging task. I shudder to read the words that I am to love my wife as Christ loved the church. I don’t think God could give men a higher calling than this. It makes me want to fall on my face in repentance before God at how I have treated my wife at times. However, the biblical roles of husband and wife are very clear and defined by God. One is to submit and respect, the other is to love, summarized plainly in Ephesians 5:33. Like anything, this can be abused. It can also be the most beautiful experience of harmony one can imagine.

In regards to women’s roles in the church, Paul is so clear 1st Timothy 3:1-7 about the role of pastor being a man’s role that I am baffled how this can be confused to include women. Wade, can you or someone else please write your exegesis of this scripture that shows how you believe Paul is including women to be overseers?

By the way, I have not heard J. MacArthur or J. Piper overuse the term "authority", and I have listened and read a fair amount of both. If there is somewhere I could look where this is shown, please list a link, I would be interested to read the context.

Grace and Peace,

Dustin

Tom Kelley said...

Jon L. Estes said...
Lydia,

You ignored my question as to what my problem is, according to you. Do you dare deal with that?


Jon, I dare not speak for Lydia (as she is more than capable of demonstrating the error of your statements on her own), but I suspect that you well know that what she meant was there is a problem with what you are saying (i.e., that she believes that what you've said isn't biblically accurate).

Let me pose this:

God speaks to the family in relation to the structure of Christ to the church.

Husband (bridegroom - Christ)has authority over wife (bride - church)

If the wife is to be in equal authority or equal in leadership, how does this fit with the parallel God gives us for Christ and the church?


The problem (there's that word again!) with your assertion is that it has nothing at all to do with what the text is talking about. The parallel drawn between Christ/the church and husbands/wives is not one of authority, but one of self-sacrificing love. Authority is the furthest thing from the point of the passage. As B Nettles already pointed out, the call to submit falls to the wife -- there is no call in these verses for the husband to rule. It is only the sinful heart of man that makes him view the Bible as teaching that husbands are to rule their wives. You simply can't get around the fact that Paul prefaces the entire topic with a call to submit to one another -- that's the theme, and the words that follow are expositions and examples of the theme.

-----
Tom

Tom Kelley said...

John Wylie said...
Jon,

That's absolutely my point. Egalitarianism totally misses the whole point of Eph. 5.


I believe it is the complementarian position that misses the point of Ephesians 5, plus the rest of the New Testament, and the spirit of Christianity itself. As I just responded to Jon, Eph 5 draws a parallel between Christ as selfless servant and the husband's responsibilities toward his wife -- it is in no way about holding a position of authority or rule. To attempt to make it say such is a grotesque distortion of the text.

Egalitarianism basically started as a social movement and has made its way into the modern church.

This is both historically and theologically inaccurate, though it is a common statement by complementarians. Historically, because the egalitarian view far preceded the modern feminist movement. Theologically, because it is the patriarchal / complementarian view that is actually the accommodation to culture and society that has permeated the church -- it is a very long standing distortion of Scripture and of God's original design for marriage, that dates back to (and is a result of) the Fall. Christ has come to break the curse and restore relationships to the pre-Fall order, which includes re-establishing the complete equality and mutual submission and servitude of men and women in marriage.

-----
Tom

John Wylie said...

Christiane said, "The strongest human muscle is the uterus during labor."

Tell that to the US Army.

Dustin, thanks for your observations, the problem is that the egalitarians are not really interested in the truth. This is nothing more than radical feminism and cultural appeasement.

Tom Kelley said...

John Wylie said...
Dustin, thanks for your observations, the problem is that the egalitarians are not really interested in the truth. This is nothing more than radical feminism and cultural appeasement.


I will charitably assume that you made this statement out of ignorance of the egalitarian position and not malice towards your brothers and sisters in Christ who disagree with you. Those of us who are fully committed to the authority and inerrancy of Scripture, who love its truths, and who believe it does not teach complementarianism would otherwise take offense at such a mischaracterization of our motives.

-----
Tom

Thy Peace said...

I would like to simply state that for me egalitarianism offers a more coherent and logically consistent picture of the scriptures than complementarianism. My belief is this will lead to a better creation of heaven on this earth. At least in once own home.

Anonymous said...

I stand with John Piper who said that any man who would allow a woman to step in front of him in combat is not a man.

God desires order and roles for men and women, and his roles for men are that they lead the home and the church and the army.

Sadly, I have observed less of this radical OB-GYN type than I have the arrangement where the tired wife and mother was forced to take the reins in the family because the limp wristed husband/father abdicated his leadership. Would to God that Christian men don't lazily give up their role, by hiding behind the politically correct notion that men and women are equal in all things.

Grace and Peace,

Dustin

John Wylie said...

"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; While they behold your chaste conversation coupled with fear. Whose adorning let it not be that outward adorning of plaiting the hair, and of wearing of gold, or of putting on of apparel; 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. 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: 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."
(1 Peter 3:1-6)

Whether a person explains this away as simply being culturally applied, or they say this was an elaborate conspiracy by the translators to subjugate women or whatever it's really saying I'm going to believe what suits me. Thy Peace summed it up great when he said "...for me..." that's exactly right that's the interpretation that appeals to him and so that's the one he accepts.

Gen. 2:20 was before the Fall, in it God clearly states that He created the woman to be a helper for the man. That's complimentarianism before the Fall. I believe you missed the point of Eph. 5 which ends with this summary verse "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 5:33)

The fact is Tom that people love being told that Christ doesn't call them to submit, they don't want to submit to husbands, or employers, or parents, or teachers, or ultimately to Christ. This isn't about me trying to be right, this about the future of Christianity.

finalyfree585 said...

Unfortunately life isnt about YOU and what YOU what the bible to say. The Lord doess not answer to us! If you are confused about this take a long look at the book of Job. We can not take a our personal veiws and use them to filter the bible. The bible is very clear on the roles of leadership and sumbmission in scripture. There is absolutly no room for debate!The fact that you people would even be debating this shows how you realy feel about God. Your so called "christianty" is a joke. Any one who would question scripture instead of believing it is an enemy of the faith.

Lydia said...

"God speaks to the family in relation to the structure of Christ to the church."

Oh my. God should have told Deborah and Hulda this.

Lydia said...

1 Peter 3:1-6)

Whether a person explains this away as simply being culturally applied, or they say this was an elaborate conspiracy by the translators to subjugate women or whatever it's really saying I'm going to believe what suits me."

Why not start way back in this passage where he is talking to believers who are living with, around or working for unbelievers? Because the context would not fit your interpretation.

The only way your interpretation of Eph 5 passage, which ironically gives you preeminance, works is if you translate Kephale as authority. And of course, this is what you were taught in seminary.

There are plenty of Greek words the Holy Spirit could have used to communicate authority clearly, as He did in 1 Corin 7. The only place a clear authority word is used concerning marriage.

All worldly systems want a pecking order. The Body is to be different because adult believers can have the same Holy Spirit. We are to submit to one another and consider others are more important than ourselves.

The comp position can be traced back to a cultural change. It came into being around the late 70's when society changed after the 60's to become more egal in practice. When women were culturally considered more inferior, there was no problem within the church.

Of course, I realize that Gen 1 and 2 had to be re-interpreted to support this. Before the above happened, the church was basically teaching that women were inferior because of the fall. Now, they try real hard to read into the pre fall account that creation order denotes preeminance. But that ignores that Adam means human and cows were created before Eve. It's also ironic that even God ignored primogeniture!

No where in Gen 1 and 2 does God clearly state that Adam is in charge of Eve. You have to read it into the text.

The worst thing that happened, that God predicted would happen, is that Eve "Turned" to Adam instead of to God (Teshuqa in Gen 3:16)

Now, you all are teaching the consequences of the fall as virtue and in ignorance are teaching women to turn to men instead of God. (As Jon thinks God only speaks to men in marriage)

BTW: No one is arguing that we should not submit. That is a red herring. But we do not submit to authority in that passage. If you go back up to verse 21, you are NOT exempted from that verse. (Unless you are learning from Grudem and his like)

Lydia said...

"Gen. 2:20 was before the Fall, in it God clearly states that He created the woman to be a helper for the man. That's complimentarianism before the Fall."

"helper" is Ezer and God is described as an Ezer.

the wording in Gen 2 denotes a "help comparable to him" As in mirror image. Adam recognized her as such, too, as we can see by his own words.

God also said "ONE FLESH UNION". How you get boss/employee type of relationship out of that, I do not know.

Thy Peace said...

Suzanne's Bookshelf [Suzanne McCarthy] > Posts related to "Ezer"

Jon L. Estes said...

tom -

"Jon, I dare not speak for Lydia (as she is more than capable of demonstrating the error of your statements on her own), but I suspect that you well know that what she meant was there is a problem with what you are saying (i.e., that she believes that what you've said isn't biblically accurate). "

I understood her. I wanted her to show me where my problem lies. He illustration did not speak to anything I had said.

I shared a story of a pastor who was called to a church and did not take it because of his wife's job or business. At least this is the reason he gave. First and foremost, if God called him, how dare he not follow. second, if God called Him, how dare his wife not walk away from whatever to follow God's call.

I do think there is a biblical precept that would support this. "Let the dead bury the dead..."

I made no mention of a woman not submitting her husband. I made a comment of a husband (pastor) not submitting to God.

So where is my problem Tom?

Thy Peace said...

God Calls Patriarchal Headship A Sinful Desire
When the God of all grace gets a hold of a man and a woman in a marriage relationship, no longer will there be a fight to see who dominates and controls the other. Rather, there will be mutual submission between husband and wife (i.e. Ephesians 5:21 – “submitting to one another in reverence to Christ”). Mutual submission, with no thought of "control," is God's design for the home. It should be the effort of every Bible-believing church, pastor and teacher to instruct husbands and wives on the sinful nature of any husband or wife seeking to dominate the other spouse.

John Wylie said...

Lydia said,
"The comp position can be traced back to a cultural change. It came into being around the late 70's when society changed after the 60's to become more egal in practice. When women were culturally considered more inferior, there was no problem within the church."

This is not true, all one has to do is read commentaries before the time you just cited. The comp view has always been the view of the church (with the exception of the Quakers), it is the natural reading of the scriptures. Tip - if you have to go to the kind of trouble you have to explain away the meaning of a text, your position is probably doing violence to the text. Anyone who hasn't been tainted by Jon Zens and his like would naturally come to the conclusion of complimetary roles in scripture. Of course, headship implies authority.

Tom Kelley said...

John Wylie said...
Thy Peace summed it up great when he said "...for me..." that's exactly right that's the interpretation that appeals to him and so that's the one he accepts.


We ought to believe what the Scriptures say, whether or not what they teach appeals to me; don't you agree? I think Thy Peace does -- we just disagree with you about what it teaches, and he was stating that in a humble way that acknowledges that our interpretations are not infallible, as is God's Word. It is not because we don't want to submit to God's will that we hold to our views -- it is because we DO wish to be faithful to His Word. You may disagree with our interpretations, but you ought not question our fidelity to the Bible because we don't accept your interpretation of it.


Gen. 2:20 was before the Fall, in it God clearly states that He created the woman to be a helper for the man. That's complimentarianism before the Fall.

As Lydia pointed out, "helper" in no way implies a subordinate position, unless you want to claim that God is subordinate to us when He helps us. I believe that's Grudem's position, but it's a sad view of the nature of God.

I believe you missed the point of Eph. 5 which ends with this summary verse "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 5:33)

And I believe you missed the point, as there is nothing in that verse (or the rest of the passage) that speaks to authority. Again, it speaks of a husband's call to self-sacrificial love (which is definitely not a matter of ruling over someone), and it speaks to the wife's call to show proper respect to her husband (which is definitely not a matter of subservience).

I know how hard it is to see past your own preconceived notions about these passages -- I held to the complementarian position for decades, as a matter of what I'd been taught, as a matter of the practice of centuries (millennia) of human history, and as a matter of what just "made sense" to me based on the "natural" or "plain" reading of the text. But when I was willing to humble myself, and admit that I didn't know everything and that others might be right, I studied more deeply and with a more open mind and heart, and my views changed. I hope you and Jon and Dustin will be willing to do the same and come to better understand God's Word. But if you don't ever agree with me, it won't change the eternal destiny of any of us, and I expect to fellowship in Christ for eternity with people who disagreed with me on many things on Earth. And I'm sure that in some things I will find they were right and I was wrong, and vice versa on other things.

The fact is Tom that people love being told that Christ doesn't call them to submit, they don't want to submit to husbands, or employers, or parents, or teachers, or ultimately to Christ.

The fact is, John, that fallen men love holding the position of preeminence, whether in marriage or the church, and they aren't easily persuaded to let it go for the more excellent way of love. Jesus taught us that being greatest in the kingdom means being the servant (not the ruler) of all. As Ephesians 5:21 makes clear, submission is mutual, never one-sided.

This isn't about me trying to be right, this about the future of Christianity.

I appreciate your desire for truth and righteousness. But I am confident that Christianity can and will withstand any misunderstandings either of us have about the teachings of the Bible. God and His truth will get along just fine even if (shudder) women one day rule the world (and the church).

-----
Tom

John Wylie said...

Tom,

I say one thing for you, you're awfully difficult to dislike. You obviously practise Prov. 15:1. I'll tone it down.

Karen in OK said...

Hi Tom Kelley,
In practical terms, how does mutual submission work out?
Wade hugged the elderly man in his church, told him it didn't matter ( I presume that meant he was free to disagree with Wade and they would still be friends), yet Wade had no intention of stopping the practice in question.
So one could say that Wade was acting as the authority.

Thy Peace said...

Church Authority: What It Is And What It Is Not
Authority is to be experienced in the assembly because of the gifts and ministries of the Holy Spirit obvious through people. In one sense, the entire body shares authority. [Eph. 5:21, 1Peter 5:5] This means we recognize one another's gifts, knowledge, or experience in the Lord and we choose to serve/submit because the Holy Spirit has placed some as gifts and has annointed the ministries of those gifts. That is the key to understanding Pastors/Elders and their function. No one has authority BECAUSE they have a stronger personality, knows more Bible, or they hold an office. That is foreign to the New Testament. Paul the Apostle had to defend his Apostleship by virtue of it being the work of the Spirit setting him aside for it. 1 Tim. 5:17 speaks of those Elders that "give oversight well"...."are worthy of double honor." It is that "give oversight well" that is the source of authority. They defined it as Holy Spirit annointing. In other words, the annointing of the Spirit makes clear the authority that rests on a ministry done well, not the office holder.

Lydia said...

"I shared a story of a pastor who was called to a church and did not take it because of his wife's job or business. At least this is the reason he gave. First and foremost, if God called him, how dare he not follow. second, if God called Him, how dare his wife not walk away from whatever to follow God's call."

I cannot answer a situation I know nothing about personally. How do I know she is not called as a witness where she works? We are ALL "called" if we are believers.

Seems to me the Holy Spirit would make it clear to BOTH of them if they are seeking the kingdom first...

But my answer does not fit your premise that God speaks through the husband.

Lydia said...

This is not true, all one has to do is read commentaries before the time you just cited. The comp view has always been the view of the church (with the exception of the Quakers), it is the natural reading of the scriptures. Tip - if you have to go to the kind of trouble you have to explain away the meaning of a text, your position is probably doing violence to the text. Anyone who hasn't been tainted by Jon Zens and his like would naturally come to the conclusion of complimetary roles in scripture. Of course, headship implies authority.

Fri Sep 03, 11:23:00 AM 2010

You can appeal to church history all you want.

I think it is a bloody mess and full of all kinds of false teaching and traditions of men such as transubstantiation, slavery, padeobaptism, church-state, etc, etc, etc.

I will stick with the SOURCE.

Lydia said...

"Wade hugged the elderly man in his church, told him it didn't matter ( I presume that meant he was free to disagree with Wade and they would still be friends), yet Wade had no intention of stopping the practice in question.
So one could say that Wade was acting as the authority."

By the same logic, had he stopped it, he would still be acting as an "authority" to the other side.

Whereas he seems to be acting more as a person who is encouraging mutual submission to each other in the Body. that is a very loving position to be in.

Tom Kelley said...

Karen in OK said...
Hi Tom Kelley,
In practical terms, how does mutual submission work out?


Hi, Karen,
I believe that the practical applications of the mutual submission called for in Ephesians 5:21 are found in the verses that follow. A woman demonstrates her submission of herself to her husband by setting aside her personal preferences and pride and demonstrating deference to her husband’s wishes and respect for him. A husband demonstrates his submission to his wife by self-sacrificially loving her, just as Christ does the church. Children submit to their parents by being obedient and by honoring them, and parents (specifically fathers are mentioned) submit to their children by not exasperating them (causing them undue frustration). Slaves submit to masters by obedience and devoted service, as if serving Jesus, and masters submit to their slaves "in the same way" -- I take that to say that masters are also obligated to serve their slaves as if serving Christ. (The mutuality of submission is most clearly seen in the master/slave example. But I believe that the primary thrust of each of these admonitions could be applied in the opposite direction – husbands should respect their wives, wives should love their husbands, parents honor their children, children not exasperate their parents, masters serve their slaves, slaves serve their masters.)

The focus in each of these examples isn't on who rules over whom, it is on self denial on the part of all. Frankly, I don't see why this isn't obvious with even a cursory reading of the text, except perhaps that people have heard this passage as a proof text for complementarianism so frequently that they can't seem to hear its main message.

Wade hugged the elderly man in his church, told him it didn't matter (I presume that meant he was free to disagree with Wade and they would still be friends), yet Wade had no intention of stopping the practice in question.
So one could say that Wade was acting as the authority.


I have no problem with the concept of some having “authority” over others, unless authority is equated with rulership (the right of one person to compel another to a certain behavior). Noah Webster can be cited as an “authority” of the English language, but that doesn’t mean he rules over it – it just means that he is an expert in it and thus what he has to say about it carries weight. We would be foolish to ignore the counsel and admonitions of someone who knew more about something than we did. In that sense, an elder/pastor has “authority” in the congregation – as a spiritually mature member of the body, specially gifted to render a particular service to the rest of the body. The man in Wade’s church was not required to submit to Wade’s “authority” simply because Wade holds some title or rank or position. But it would be wise of him to follow the desires and direction of one who demonstrated spiritual maturity and God’s gifting to look after the spiritual needs of others in the congregation.
-----
Tom

John Wylie said...

Lydia,

You were the one who appealed to history. I simply stated that to say that complimentary teaching didn't come around until the 70's is easily refutable by reading commentaries and sermons prior to that point. Those sermons clearly teach a complimentarian view which refutes your assertion. That's all I was saying. I'll stick to the source as well, I only deviated from it when you made a historical assertion.

finalyfree585 said...

You tell them John Wylie! Its about time some one spoke the truth. Its good to see there is atleast one Christian amoung all these unbelievers.

Tom Kelley said...

finalyfree585 said...
You tell them John Wylie! Its about time some one spoke the truth. Its good to see there is atleast one Christian amoung all these unbelievers.


finallyfree585,
What must I do to be saved? Besides believe that men are supposed to boss women around, that is?

-----
Tom

Anonymous said...

All I know is that the command to me to Love my wife as Christ Loved the Church is more than I can handle... I'll let my wife worry about that submission thing - this has seemed to work out well for us for the past 30 years

Jim Champion

John Wylie said...

Hey Tom,

I would respectfully like to make an observation.

You said, "I believe that the practical applications of the mutual submission called for in Ephesians 5:21 are found in the verses that follow. A woman demonstrates her submission of herself to her husband by setting aside her personal preferences and pride and demonstrating deference to her husband’s wishes and respect for him. A husband demonstrates his submission to his wife by self-sacrificially loving her, just as Christ does the church."

That's the same view I hold and in my opinion that's the complimentary view. Most of the egals posting comments here would be appalled at you suggesting that "A woman demonstrates her submission of herself to her husband by setting aside her personal preferences and pride and demonstrating deference to her husband’s wishes and respect for him." In my opinion you are spot on in that her submission is different than her husband's, that's distinct but complimentary roles.

finalyfree585 said...

"finallyfree585,
What must I do to be saved? Besides believe that men are supposed to boss women around, that is?"

No, to be saved you must believe what the bible says, somthing you clearly have trouble with. Great work Mr. Wylie you are inspiration to us all. Thank you so much for taking a biblical stand.

Lydia said...

You were the one who appealed to history. I simply stated that to say that complimentary teaching didn't come around until the 70's is easily refutable by reading commentaries and sermons prior to that point. Those sermons clearly teach a complimentarian view which refutes your assertion. That's all I was saying. I'll stick to the source as well, I only deviated from it when you made a historical assertion.

Fri Sep 03, 05:26:00 PM 2010

I understood you to mean it is the historical view as in church history and commentaries. Both are man made traditions and interpretations. Why read men when Jesus said He would send us the Best Teacher: The Holy Spirit?

I would suggest you research when the term "complimentarian" was coined if you are interested in history.

Have you ever asked yourself why that term when it is NOT complimentary. Why not just call it Patriarchy since that is what it is. It was clever to call it something it isn't.

The comp movement WAS a response to what was happening in the secular culture. An attempt to correct a secular movement that was going too far as all civil movements tend to do before they correct themselves.


That is what I was referring to....the things happening in the secular culture that prompted the pink and blue Christianity movement we see today in the churches. Before then, everyone assumed women were inferior. Do you realize that it wasn't until the late 60's that if a husband died his accounts were frozen and his wife could not access them until probate? Unless the husband made arrangements for her prior to his death? Do you realize that women had more freedom to function in the SBC BEFORE the comp movement? Because they were not a threat in the civil sphere. Funny how that coincides.

What changed is how the fall was interpreted. It used to be taught that women were inferior because of the fall. But folks got too wise to buy into consequence of sin as virtue so they had to go back further and read into the prefall account an authority position for male Adam. It is not in there. God never tells Adam he is in charge of Eve.

All of this pink and blue insanity to keep preeminance over another in the Body of Christ leads to a serious heresy in ESS. Some folks will do anything to keep a worldly pecking order where mutual love and submission is taught instead.

BTW: How can I be Christlike since Christ came as a male in the flesh if specific non biological gender roles are so important within the Body of Christ?

There is a group out there touting a "Biblical womanhood". Who is my Biblical model for that? Mary?

John Wylie said...

Lydia,

I certainly think you explained yourself well in that post. So you're saying what existed before the 60's was basically in your view worse than complimentarianism?

Would you agree with Tom's comment? "A woman demonstrates her submission of herself to her husband by setting aside her personal preferences and pride and demonstrating deference to her husband’s wishes and respect for him." This is a comp position because it proposes that men and women have different roles in the marriage relationship.

BTW Tom, I'm not trying to drag you into this I'm just trying understand where Lydia is coming from.

Tom Kelley said...
This comment has been removed by the author.
Tom Kelley said...

John Wylie said...
In my opinion you are spot on in that her submission is different than her husband's, that's distinct but complimentary roles.


John,
I wasn't saying that they differ in "roles". I see the examples of submission given as just that -- examples. Not rules, not set in stone decrees of what one must do and the other must not do. They are practical examples of what the outworking of mutual submission looks like. But they aren't the only ways in which either party in a relationship can or should submit.

As I also said, one could just as well say that a husband is to respect his wife and a wife is to love her husband. That's not complementarianism as I understand the term, as there is no submission to "authority" in the sense of one person being "in charge", only a voluntary agreement by each person in a relationship to do what is best for the other rather than just doing whatever they want for themselves.

-----
Tom

Tom Kelley said...

finalyfree585 said...
No, to be saved you must believe what the bible says, somthing you clearly have trouble with.


What I have trouble with is not what the Bible says, only with what you say it says. If salvation depends on trusting your interpretations of Scripture (or those of any other flawed human), we are all in trouble.

-----
Tom

Christiane said...

I think 'to be saved' means to be 'in Christ'. We are 'saved' with Him, in Him, and through Him.

finalyfree585 said...

Salvation hinges on how you interpret the bible! Many people interpret the bible to say that salvation depends on works.But as Matthew 7:21-23 shows us those that rely on their works will not enter Heaven! How you understand the bible is vital. The sad part is that you understand what the bible says perfecdtly but refuse to believe it. If this is how you treat Ephesians 5:22, im am to asume you treat this rest of Gods word the same way. You think you are smarter than God is, and only accept comandments that you like.

John Wylie said...

Tom,

In my opinion the scripture teaches that how mutual submission is accomplished is by everyone fulfilling their God given roles. I don't think that a man is given leadership to serve himself, he's given leadership as a stewardship to God. Not one time is the wife told to agape her husband, and not one time is the husband told to reverence his wife. No where is the wife ever called the head of the husband, but in two different places the man is called the head of the wife. Christ's role in relation to the church is headship, the church's role in relation to Christ is submission. The husband's role in relation to his wife is headship, the wife's role in relation to her husband is submission. I'm not trying to argue authority at this point, I'm just saying that roles are very clearly deliniated in everyone of these marital passages.

Lydia said...

"I certainly think you explained yourself well in that post. So you're saying what existed before the 60's was basically in your view worse than complimentarianism?"

No, it is the same thing. They just needed a palitable word to market patriarchy in a secular society that was becoming more egal in business and legalities.

(I believe every single believer has always been under the authority of Jesus Christ. Not other humans in the Body. I wonder if you think some in the Body have a special anointing that others cannot have?)

It is a mind game. Let's agree they are equal but have specific and different roles (which happen to be unequal). If you think about it, it is not that much different than the "seperate but equal" slogan we tried once, too.

"Would you agree with Tom's comment? "A woman demonstrates her submission of herself to her husband by setting aside her personal preferences and pride and demonstrating deference to her husband’s wishes and respect for him." This is a comp position because it proposes that men and women have different roles in the marriage relationship."

John, if we are believers we all submit to one another. Let's take scripture as a whole. Take ALL the one anothers...do they apply to husbands and wives who are believers? Does Eph 5:21 apply to you in your marriage relationship? After all, submission begins there...the word was not even in verse 22 but added by translators. What does that mean? It means it applies to you, too. (Just like the translators added "symbol of" in 1 Corin 11. We really have to be Bereans when it comes to this topic!)

What I object to as a very bad interpretation is that you say it is submission to the husband as an authority. You are a depraved sinner saved by the same grace as your wife. So then what is your spiritual leadership...is it acting as a sort of Holy Spirit for your wife?

You teach women to follow their husbands instead of Christ. (You cannot see that, I know)

But, They cannot go wrong seeking and following Christ. Their husband would be richer for it.

What non biological roles do you think are pink and blue? Christianity transcends gender. There is not a pink way of salvation or sanctification. Our Savior was male in His flesh. So, who is my model for these specific roles? How can it be Jesus since He was male and I am being taught a pink biblical womanhood?


BTW: Tom is exactly on track.

John Wylie said...

The idea that submission was added by the translators to Eph. 5:22 is based on its omission from a few manuscripts, that in no way proves that it was added by the translators. It appears in the overwhelming majority of known manuscripts. Not that it matters because it occurs again in vs. 24.

Here are your role models on the woman's role. "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: 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." (1 Peter 3:5-6)

You asked "I wonder if you think some in the Body have a special anointing that others cannot have?"
To answer your question there are definitely roles in the church that only certain individuals qualify for: Bishops and Deacons have specific qualifications deliniated in 1 Tim. 3. I'm not sure how you use the word anointing, but I believe it is an empowering for a specific task. Obviously not everyone is given the same task or role in the church so yes. 1 Cor. 12:14-31 very clearly teaches we have the same Spirit but different roles. I'm not saying one role is more important than the other, just different. I believe the same about marriage.












I agree that we are all sinful and flawed, but God places us under that authority of flawed gov't, that doesn't mean we're not following Christ.

finalyfree585 said...

Well said John!You are absolutely correct.

Lydia said...

"The idea that submission was added by the translators to Eph. 5:22 is based on its omission from a few manuscripts, that in no way proves that it was added by the translators. ."

I think you are reaching about the manuscripts but even so, You missed my point. Submission applies to EVERYONE in verse 21. Submission was a step up for believing women in the 1st Century who were considered chattel. If I take your interpretation, it would mean women are not to love their husbands or apply any of the vast love verses to their relationship. As usual, these metaphors are taken way too far.

"Here are your role models on the woman's role. 1 Peter 3:5-6)"

God also told Abraham to do what Sarah said.:o) So, basically this passage means I should model Sarah?

If a Christian wife is infertile should she get a servant to sleep with herhusband? Remember who this passage is speaking to...believers who live with, work with and are around unbelievers.

Always remember before proof texting we must ask, what is the occassion or setting. Who is speaking and who are they speaking to.

And I am wondering if you are giving your brothers in Christ a holy kiss at each greeting? :o)

Still, how do you reconcile the pink biblical womanhood with the admonition all through scripture to be Christlike? Aren't women to to be Christlike? And how does that work when our Savior was male in the flesh yet the focus today is on a pink biblical womanhood?

"ou asked "I wonder if you think some in the Body have a special anointing that others cannot have?"
1 Cor. 12:14-31 very clearly teaches we have the same Spirit but different roles. I'm not saying one role is more important than the other, just different. I believe the same about marriage. "

There are no "roles". Roles are something one pretends to be. There are functions in the Body. And you claim women are equal but cannot function in the same way as men in the Body. How exactly is that equal? We do appreciate the fact you allow us to have the same salvation, though. But I sure wish you guys would get it that we have FULL inheritance, too.

And you cannot ignore that whatever the function, we are are lowly servants to one another in the Body and marriage, if really saved.

Anyone who actually thinks they are to be obeyed, exhalted, followed, etc., because of a title, has a sin problem. We need to get rid of the org charts and function as a living organism. We should want folks to become spiritually mature. Not keep them as spiritually immature children to prop up a "position" or "office".

There is no evidence women cannot be deacons or elders. To interpret it as such would mean that single men cannot be elders. The truth about Junia and Phoebe is always ignored.

"agree that we are all sinful and flawed, but God places us under that authority of flawed gov't, that doesn't mean we're not following Christ."

I agree but the Body of Christ is not to be like the world or government. I cannot figure out why you cannot see that. The world always wants a pecking order. It likes to focus on who is in charge and who has the power. We are not to be like the Gentiles who want to lord it over. You are trying to map how the body functions to how the world functions. It does not map. We are living in a New Covenant and you are not a Levite Priest. All believers in the NC are ministers and all are gifted by the Holy Spirit to function within the Body of Christ.

Wade Burleson said...

Lydia,

"You missed my point. Submission applies to EVERYONE in verse 21. Submission was a step up for believing women in the 1st Century who were considered chattel. If I take your interpretation, it would mean women are not to love their husbands or apply any of the vast love verses to their relationship."

Well said, Lydia.

John Wylie said...

You and I are never going to agree. Of course I know that I am supposed to submit as well. But as I already stated how we all submit is by fulfilling our God given roles.

I might note as well that when denominations go with the egalitarian view they invariably stray from the rest of the scriptures and wind up accepting open sin. Because when you explain away the natural meaning of the scriptures to support a cultural trend, you've now opened the door to explain away the scriptures when open sin is in vogue. BTW the Metropolitan Community Churches do exactly what you are doing in dismissing the clear and long believed understanding of scripture to justify their sin. That's the direction you are all headed.

Jon L. Estes said...

Lydia,

Would you mind stepping out of this discussion?

Your comments are really causing me to wonder if you believe what you state.

John Wylie said...

"BTW the Metropolitan Community Churches do exactly what you are doing in dismissing the clear and long believed understanding of scripture to justify their sin. That's the direction you are all headed."

I just realized that may sound as though I were implying you were sinning. That was not my intention please don't take it that way, I'm sorry for any offence I may have caused. I'm just talking about the concerns I have.

Debbie Kaufman said...

John Wylie: I believe you have just rewritten the meaning of Ephesians 5:21. Sometimes I think I would like a man to be placed in the position of not being able to follow God's lead 100%, to squelch the desires God has placed in side so many women, that are not able to be followed because some men stop her. I wonder how long a Christian man would be able to do this. Then add insult to injury by saying this doesn't make him lesser, just different roles.

Jon Estes: Oh Lydia believes 100% in what she is saying and the scripture given. She is doing a great job articulating. It makes a difference when one reads the full passage which I believe gives a truer interpretation.

By the way Wade, welcome back. :)

Lydia said...

Would you mind stepping out of this discussion?

Your comments are really causing me to wonder if you believe what you state.

Sat Sep 04, 12:11:00 PM 2010

However did you come to that conclusion, Jon? This looks suspiciously like an ad homenim suggestion to shut me up.

BTW: Wade can ask me to step out since it is his blog. And if he does, I will cheerfully do so.

Lydia said...

"I might note as well that when denominations go with the egalitarian view they invariably stray from the rest of the scriptures and wind up accepting open sin."

This implies that women are sin or more prone to sin than men.

It is the old argument that women pastoring means homosexual pastors. How do you explain that historically and even today, Patriarchal cultures are rampent with homosexuality?

It also implies that historically male led denominations did not stray from scripture and embrace sin. Simply looking at percentages there have been far more male false teachers. Look at all the male pastors that embraced slavery as scriptural for centuries.

It is not the gender. It is sin. And both genders sin.

I would not be offended if you implied I am sinning. I got off that train years back. I have serious compassion for those who teach this tertiary issue is a salvic one. I fear for them. I am glad to hear you do not believe it is a salvic issue. That I am not sanctified in a pink Talmudic way.

But I am concerned for men who believe these things. I think it is a huge sin trap for them to want preeminance over others in the Body and marriage. It also delights Satan to teach over half of all believers they do not have full inheritance using some proof texts that have been badly translated by MEN for centuries.

Lydia said...

"But as I already stated how we all submit is by fulfilling our God given roles. "

It might help if you state what you think are our non biological God given specific roles.

John Wylie said...

Lydia,

I don't understand the question "It might help if you state what you think are our non biological God given specific roles." Please explain and I would be glad to answer you.

Look I know this is hard to believe but I'm not trying to disrespect you. We are just each obviously passionate about this subject. I apologize for any personally offensive things I've said to you. But honestly I would be glad to offer my opinion on the above question, I just need some explanation so I understand what you're asking me.

tikatu said...

Just an observation here:

Those who have been arguing the complementarian position in this thread are all men (unless finallyfree585 is a woman). While those arguing the egalitarian position are a mixture of men and women.

Who has more to lose by applying the egalitarian position instead of the complementarian one? It sounds to me as if there's some preserving of the status quo here by those who have more to lose in position and authority.

Men and women are equally sinful. Salvation applies to both the same way.

And finallyfree585, this is NOT a salvation issue. Your salvation (or mine or Lydia's or Tom Kelley's or Wade's) does not depend on how we read these verses. It depends on Christ and Him alone. Always.

Lydia said...

"I don't understand the question "It might help if you state what you think are our non biological God given specific roles." Please explain and I would be glad to answer you.
"

You have consistently said there are specific God given roles for the genders. We all know the biological ones we were created with but what are the non biological "roles" for women in marriage and the Body for all time?

BTW: I do not feel a bit disrespected at all! We are having a civil debate. That is good for all. Wish we had more of this serious discussion of the Word in the Body and not just one guy giving his interpretation week after week. The Body would be more healthy as more would search the scriptures and seek the Best Teacher: The Holy Spirit!

John Wylie said...

Lydia,

Ok I want to preface what I'm saying with this: I believe women and men are equal partakers of the ministry of the Holy Spirit, I believe that they have equal access to God the Father through the one Mediator Jesus Christ (I do not believe that the man serves as the priest of the family), I believe that they have an equal capacity to understand and articulate spiritual things, I believe my wife's views are as equally valid as mine are, I believe men and women have an equal capacity intellectually.

The "non biological" roles are no different for men or women. We are equally called upon to pray, to love our neighbors as ourselves, to give to the poor the widows and the orphans, to provoke one another to love and good works, to be ready to give an answer for the hope that's within us, to support missions etc...

I draw a distinction between the Body of Christ at large (the universal church) and the local expression of that Body. But I think that the roles that I believe the scriptures we've discussed and others deliniate are to be applied to the home and the local visible expression of the Body of Christ (the local church).

I believe women and men have an equal inheritance in Christ. I don't believe that these roles however will be "for all time" I believe that in the eternal age ( not arguing dispensatinally) these distinctions of roles will not be there. We will all be one in Christ, one sheepfold and One Shepherd.

Jeff Rogers said...

Wade,
In reference to the study on Wednesday Nights. "Ted vs Wade"...No holds barred.

I hope you are recording those.

I find myself cheering for Ted, but wanting to learn what I don't know at the same time.

SO I come with a bias, perhaps I will leave with a new perspective and a broken paradigm.

Hey we can dream can't we???lol

Maybe the next time I am in town you can set it up for Ted and I to debate/discuss/share teaching of eschatological topics...

...Nah, way too much to ask.

Tom Kelley said...

finalyfree585 said...
The sad part is that you understand what the bible says perfecdtly but refuse to believe it. If this is how you treat Ephesians 5:22, im am to asume you treat this rest of Gods word the same way. You think you are smarter than God is, and only accept comandments that you like.


From my perspective, I could say the same about you. But that would not be a kind way to speak to a fellow believer in Christ.

-----
Tom

Tom Kelley said...

John Wylie said...
Tom,
In my opinion the scripture teaches that how mutual submission is accomplished is by everyone fulfilling their God given roles. I don't think that a man is given leadership to serve himself, he's given leadership as a stewardship to God. Not one time is the wife told to agape her husband, and not one time is the husband told to reverence his wife.


John, in my opinion, the gender-based roles you speak of are not the intended meaning of the passages that complementarians see in them. I don't expect you to agree.

No where is the wife ever called the head of the husband, but in two different places the man is called the head of the wife. Christ's role in relation to the church is headship, the church's role in relation to Christ is submission. The husband's role in relation to his wife is headship, the wife's role in relation to her husband is submission. I'm not trying to argue authority at this point, I'm just saying that roles are very clearly deliniated in everyone of these marital passages.

Seems to me that if you say that headship means that person A is in a "role" that requires person A to submit to person B (in a way that person B is not required to submit to person A), that's the same thing as saying person B has authority over person A.

Christ is called the head of the church because He is its source, and man is called the head of woman because Adam was Eve's source. Headship is not used in these passages as a metaphor for who is in a dominant position and who is in a subserviant one; it refers to an organic relationship and to source (like we use the term head of a river for its point of origin).

Again, I don't expect you to agree.

-----
Tom

James Hunt said...

Wade,

Sorry to respond so tardily to your response to what I posted regarding Ephesians 5:22 ff.

I hear what you're saying. But the way I see it, Ephesians 5:21 brings up the subject of being submissive to each other in the church, and then gives three subsequent applications of submission...only these are authority structures: Wives to husbands, children to parents, and then slaves to masters. Given this plain reading of the context of this section (as well as the fact that the same type context is seen in 1 Peter 3) it's hard for me to see how it's mutual submission that is in view.

Thy Peace said...

From VTM Bottomline [Paul Burleson] blog:

IS JESUS ETERNALLY SUBORDINATE TO THE FATHER?====== MY TWO CENTS

OLD SCHOOL/NEW SCHOOL THINKING-------ABOUT WOMEN

WHO'S THE BOSS?

Lydia said...

"I draw a distinction between the Body of Christ at large (the universal church) and the local expression of that Body. But I think that the roles that I believe the scriptures we've discussed and others deliniate are to be applied to the home and the local visible expression of the Body of Christ (the local church)."

That is where I think you need to be specific about the proof texts you have offered. What do those roles look like on a day to day basis in a marriage.

As for the church, I assume you mean women are equal but cannot teach men, is that correct?

I do not really recognize leadership in the Body because that is really a servant function of sacrfice. Jesus Christ is the true Leader of the Body. Everyone else has functions. The "overseers", should be the most spiritually mature and might be the janitor.


There is no servant leadership. That is just a nice way to say: Benevolent Dictator. And ironically, that term was coined (Servant Leadership) not long after "complimentarian")

I think HEbrews 13:17 has been horribly translated.

If the wife has the indwelling Holy Spirit just like you, then why does she need a leader in the marriage? She is to be part of a one flesh union. What are those "roles" in marriage...because it does sound like a "work" when folks start throwing out "roles" for gender.

"
I believe women and men have an equal inheritance in Christ. I don't believe that these roles however will be "for all time" I believe that in the eternal age ( not arguing dispensatinally) these distinctions of roles will not be there. We will all be one in Christ, one sheepfold and One Shepherd."

So, in other words, married believing women are truly free in Christ when they die. Or they are finally recognized as adult believers who do not need a human leader.

Lydia said...

"Not one time is the wife told to agape her husband, and not one time is the husband told to reverence his wife."

Perhaps this was only to be this way in Ephesus! :o)

Seriously, think about what you have said here. This means I should ignore all the other passages on love when it comes to my husband! Because love is not important to my gender and marriage. Only reverence.

I have watched (I was in the comp world for ages) couples really try to impliment this "Love and Respect"model. It is so sad how folks are taught to be distracted with this stuff. It turns out to be a religion of works that focuses us on each other and on ourselves and if others are "doing what they should do" instead of beomg focused on Christ!

I wish I had a dollar for every comp woman who has said she is waiting for her husband to be the leader or spiritual leader of their marriage and home. What is she waiting for? Why? Because she thinks it is his role and if she does anything she is "usurping" his authority. It is sick. It is not of Christ. It has nothing to do with marriage or the Body. It is a diversion that Satan loves.


BTW: Let's look at the word that is translated as respect (reverence in the AV and KJ) in the NIV and other translations.

In Greek it is phobeo. Which is where we get our word phobia. It can mean to frighten, i.e. (passively) to be alarmed; by analogy, to be in awe of, i.e.
revere:--be (+ sore) afraid, fear (exceedingly), reverence.

Elsewhere it is consistently translated fear, be afraid, be afraid of, etc. Here is the breakdown of translation choices in the AV: AV — fear 62, be afraid 23, be afraid of 5, reverence 1, misc 2

Ironically in 1 Peter 3:7, Greek word better expressing how we today view "respect" is used in a marriage passage but is the husband's duty to the unbelieving wife:


1PE 3:7 “Husbands, in the same way be considerate as you live with your wives, and treat them with respect as the weaker partner and as heirs with you of the gracious gift of life, so that nothing will hinder your prayers.”

"Respect" here is the word "time": 5092 time {tee-may’} from 5099; TDNT – 8:169,1181; n f AV – honour 35, price 8, sum 1, precious 1; 43 1) a valuing by which the price is fixed 1a) of the price itself 1b) of the price paid or received for a person or thing bought or sold 2) honour which belongs or is shown to one 2a) of the honour which one has by reason of rank and state of office which he holds 2b) deference, reverence

Even stranger if we look close in 1 Peter 3:1, we see phobeo again with unbelieving husbands listening to their believing wives!

What do we make of this type of "respect" that is not really honor but a healthy fear? (Not all fear is bad.)

Lydia said...

"Not one time is the wife told to agape her husband, and not one time is the husband told to reverence his wife."

Oh, I forgot this:

Since you have in obedience to the truth purified your souls for a sincere love [phileo] of the brethren, fervently love [agape] one another from the heart, (1 Peter 1:22)

Now for this very reason also, applying all diligence, in your faith supply moral excellence, and in your moral excellence, knowledge, and in your knowledge, self-control, and in your self-control, perseverance, and in your perseverance, godliness, and in your godliness, brotherly kindness [phileo], and in your brotherly kindness, love [agape]. (2 Peter 1:5-7)

My command is this: Love each other as I have loved you. Greater love has no one than this, that he lay down his life for his friends. - John 15:12-13


John, I am hoping you believe these sampling of agape love verses apply to married women.

Christiane said...

Wade asks 'Who has the authority in a marriage . . the Husband or the Wife?"

But Wade knows it's a 'trick question'. :) Let me explain:


WHAT GOD HAS JOINED TOGETHER . . .

1 Corinthians 7: 1-7

Directions concerning Marriage

7 Now concerning the matters about which you wrote: ‘It is well for a man not to touch a woman.’
2 But because of cases of sexual immorality, each man should have his own wife and each woman her own husband.
3 The husband should give to his wife her conjugal rights, and likewise the wife to her husband. 4For the wife does not have authority over her own body, but the husband does; likewise the husband does not have authority over his own body, but the wife does.
5 Do not deprive one another except perhaps by agreement for a set time, to devote yourselves to prayer, and then come together again, so that Satan may not tempt you because of your lack of self-control.

6 This I say by way of concession, not of command.
7 I wish that all were as I myself am. But each has a particular gift from God, one having one kind and another a different kind. "


I like how Wade has emphasized Apostolic teachings that reflect mutual obligation of spouses to respect one another's marital rights. The whole idea of a blessed Christian marriage is that Christ is the Authority in that union.

If you continue to read the teaching into verse seven, you find these words:
". . But each has a particular gift from God, one having one kind and another a different kind. "
Notice how closely these words mirror the biblical descriptions of the Body of Christ, where the members each bring their own gifts to share with one another and to build up their union, with Christ at the head.

The language in verse seven is not a coincidence. It is very telling.

The connections are shown between:

A. the marriage union model (as the two becoming 'one flesh' under the Authority of Christ as the Lord of Life);
and
B. the descriptions of the Body of Christ (we are 'in Him' made one).

The Authority in each model resides in Lord Christ.

finalyfree585 said...
This comment has been removed by the author.
Lydia said...

"submission...only these are authority structures: Wives to husbands, children to parents, and then slaves to masters."

But then, over in Philemon, Paul tells him to treat Oni as his brother in Christ.

I admit, this is not easy but as Christians, we are not to be like the world that wants a pecking order with each other.

Christiane said...

The problem with putting one's husband up on a pedestal and kow-towing to him as lord and master, is that women know what some men often don't care to know:

Our Lord Himself washed the feet of His own disciples, a very lowly job in those days.
If a husband feels he needs to 'be raised up' in order to be respected by his 'properly subordinate' Christian wife,
all he has to do is to imagine how Christ was 'raised up'.

Then he will quietly walk away from all thought of pedestals;
because he will remember that
the Only One Who ever deserved
to be on one,
chose the Cross instead.

finalyfree585 said...

Tom-"From my perspective, I could say the same about you. But that would not be a kind way to speak to a fellow believer in Christ."

No, you couldnt. You see i may not be as "PC" as the rest of you but i am just dumb enough to believe what the Bible says is true! The problem we are faced with is not weather or not women should live in the role God put them in. It is rank librealism we are battling. More then that is a battle agaisnt the destruction of the church!

Every time a libreal stands up and calls the Bible into question it is a threat to all we believe! I dont care what the subject is, if you say one part of the bible is a lie then that means it is all a lie. If there is even a single verse in scrpiture that is false then none of the Bible can be trusted! Every thing we teach and believe in our hearts would be void and vain.

In fact, why dont we just throw our Bibles in the trash if we are not going to believe what it says? You said it would be inpolite to speak ill of a brother in Christ. But how am i suposed to believe youre a brother if you sit there and calmy say the bible is a lie?

The libreal knows a disturbing truth. If you can exsplain away a single passage then that means none of the bible can be trusted. So they pretend to be christian and then try to convence us that what the bible says isnt true. The passage in question is very plain and very simple. There is no debate wheater or not a wife should submit to her husband! No, this debate is enemies of the faith trying to brain wash true believers into thinking that they can not trust their Bible.

If we explain this verse away where will it end? Next we will have gay preachers. Then we will turn a blind eye to church members shacking up with people they are not married to. Why not? We cant trust our bible after all, right? Whats the point?

You can sit there all you want and try to say its just a differnce in perspective but our God couldnt care less about our perspective! All we can do is read what the bible says and believe it!

So i say again. How can i believe you are my brother when you throw in with the very people that wish to destroy us? At the very least you are being unknowningly used by our enemy. Not unlike Peter when he tried to talk Christ out of going to the cross. If this is the case and you truly are a cunfused brother, Christ is very clear on what needs to be done. When Peter threw in with satan our Lord did not give him a pat on the back and say "oh,its ok peter you just have a difference in opinion." No, he shook him out of his confusion with blunt truth.
So if i seem harsh or offencive i do so by the exsample of christ. Not to be rude but save you from your confusion.

It is clear tome however that true brother or not you have wholly bought into the enemies lies.Whatever the case, this is my last comment on the subject. So i will leave you with this statment...

Mar 8:33 But when He had turned around and looked
on His disciples, He rebuked Peter, saying, Go behind Me, Satan! For you do not mind the things of God, but of the things of men.

Anonymous said...

I know I am a bit late to the party, and not likely to get a response, but to whomever said this was 'rare' I beg to differ.

Quiverfull and patriarchy ideologies are gaining ground. These teach that a woman is to serve first her father then her husband then is only good to have as many children as possible. Even in the face of health problems, even likely death, she is to continue on getting pregnant.

I have been in this very conversation numerous times with people who attend a church where one of the leaders of this movement is elder. I am a sinner- even 'questionably saved' because I only have one child BECAUSE that one almost killed me. Oh she did...they brought me back, thankfully.

My dr made no bones about the fact that another one would likely finish the deed. Yet, to these people who follow QF/P that is no excuse. I am 'ungodly' 'lack faith' and 'wordly' and 'skirting my womanly duties' because my husband and I both chose to be sterilized.

That is not just the people on the forum I came across....just read the blogs of any QFer. It does not matter what the 'excuse' is, birth control is evil, always. I see women who talk about not having food for their children, yet they continue having them.

The same with a husband being in 'authority.' A woman in these circles has NO voice. They have to follow their husband's lead in everything- read 'Created to be his Helpmeet' it is a very popular book in these circles....google for quotes should give you an idea of the extreme stance they take.

These women do not even have a real voice in who they will marry. Again, read the blogs and 'courtship' websites. Read the blog by Razing Ruth.

They deny education to women, marry then off as young as possible, force them into back to back pregnancies, homeschooling and servitude to their husbands and call it 'Biblical.'

Some even teach that ALL women should submit to ALL men. One guy in particular got a strong ear full from me when he tried to dictate through the computer what books I should read. He even wanted my pastor's number so 'he' could set me straight.....you can imagine the fireworks when I gave him HER info.

Don't even get me started on how they treat their 'quiverfull of blessings from God.'

Anonymous said...

John Wylie wrote: “Most of the egals posting comments here would be appalled at you {Tom} suggesting that 'A woman demonstrates her submission of herself to her husband by setting aside her personal preferences and pride and demonstrating deference to her husband’s wishes and respect for him.' ....her submission is different than her husband's, that's distinct but complimentary roles.”

For a husband to love his wife like Christ loved the church will require that he set aside his personal preferences and pride and demonstrate deference to his wife's wishes and respect for her.

It seems from a hierarchical perspective, that in marriage when a female submits it is called "submission", but when a male submits it's called "leadership", but godly submission called by any other name is still submission and not really so distinct when it is practically worked out. It is complementary for both husband and wife to mutually love, respect, and submit for the glory of God.

Tom wrote:
"But I believe that the primary thrust of each of these admonitions could be applied in the opposite direction – husbands should respect their wives, wives should love their husbands, parents honor their children, children not exasperate their parents, masters serve their slaves, slaves serve their masters.)

The focus in each of these examples isn't on who rules over whom, it is on self denial on the part of all. Frankly, I don't see why this isn't obvious with even a cursory reading of the text,..."

Excellent.

James Hunt said...

Lydia,

Thank you. I am continuing to do research on this.

Your brother in Christ.

James

chaidrinkingfool said...

Interesting discussion going on here. I appreciate the spirit of it.

Here's some of what I see...

In Eph 5:21, all Christians are told to submit to all other Christians, out of reverence for Christ. I do not see this being limited to times when we're in a church building, or it not applying within the marriage relationship. As I think another commenter (or two ;-) ) has observed, if this "one another" means something other than "one another", what effect does that have on all the other "one another"s in scripture?

Verse 22 does indeed separate out wives' submission to husbands: within the context of Christians' submission to one another. I do not think it negates the instruction of the verse before it. It may clarify the way in which the submission of a Christian wife differs from the societal/cultural expectation of wifely submission of the time.

Verses 25-31 are addressed to husbands: within the context of Christians' submission to one another. A husband is told to love his wife as Christ loves the church. I have heard of this described as difficult, and/or as being willing to lay one's life down--which is usually interpreted as "being willing to die for her" in a literal sense of bodily death. I will not disagree with either observation/interpretation.

I propose, however, that the husband laying his life down--or rather, more often "being willing to lay his life down" for his wife is not intended to be limited to a theoretical point in the future in which the husband will take a bullet that is meant for his wife.

It seems often overlooked that the aspect of Christ's love for the church that husbands are to emulate/strive to embody is specified by Scripture. .."just as Christ loved the church and gave himself up for her 26to make her holy, cleansing[b] her by the washing with water through the word"...

Christ as *savior*. As husbands are sinful humans, this cannot mean that husbands provide salvation for their wives. What does it mean?

Christ blessed us by coming to earth, living with us as fully human. He provided us all with an example of the sort of life that is pleasing to God. What gifts! Yet how did he become our savior? By dying on a cross. Jesus emptied himself of power, of privilege, of authority: to die on the cross for us.

It is this emptying of authority that husbands are to emulate. This is the *daily* laying down of your life that is called for: not bullet-stopping, not working yourself to death in a paying job. It isn't the same for every husband because no two individuals are exactly the same, and no marriage relationships are the same.

In case you are wondering, I do submit in my marriage relationship. Just not unilaterally.

Anonymous said...

No matter what the men here say, submission does dimisish a woman because it doesn't allow her to play the role of an adult.

You men can say it a 100 times over, but the submissive role you envisage for wives is not one of an adult to adult. It's of a child to an adult.

Nothing you can say or do changes that. We need adults to act like adults, not like children.

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Gene Scarborough said...

A most pertinent issue and the responses show good thinking!

I have met and followed Waneta Dawn who lived in such a male dominated marriage.

Read her comment here:

http://submissiontyranny.blogspot.com/2010/05/subverting-gospelhusband-authority.html#comment-form

I commend her book and blog to any who want to see good scripture analysis and commentary, mostly from women who have experienced abuse under religious dogma!

Anonymous said...

And this is one of many little reasons I refuse to get married. Never dated, and don't ever intend to get married. And yes I've read 1 Corith. Chapter 7.
T.

Cheryl said...

Submission does not mean "to obey." The Greek word for "obey/obedience" is hupakoe, which means to listen to or to harken to. Submission (hupotasso) means to get under and lift up, or to put in order, support, attach to or be at the disposal of. It does not mean obedience. If man was to be over women the passage would read: Wifes obey your husbands as slaves obey their masters and as children obey their parents.
When submission between Christians is referred to in the New Testament, it generally means an open attitude of mutual acceptance, sharing ideas, and yielding to the desire of the other, not mindless obedience. Never would one be expected to blindly obey every other Christian, yet, Ephesians 5:21 says we are to submit ourselves to one another.

Matthew curry said...

Well said Cheryl.