Wednesday, July 30, 2014

Spiritual Misogyny and Egalitarianism

Source

I attended a small local community college.  So, when some buffoon commented in class, "we should line up shoulder to shoulder on the (Indian) reservation and shoot everything that moves", word got around.  The general consensus was that the knave should be strung up, then tarred and feathered.

Being Native American myself, of course I was aghast.  Though, knowing the fellow personally, I wasn't surprised.  As a regular contributor to the school newspaper, though, I took advantage of the school-wide outrage to make a bigger point.

"It's not the blatant racism that bothers me, it's the benevolent sort that I find so frustrating.  Don't you realize, dear non-racist-friend, that when you think I am too foolish, weak-minded, or inept to fight my own battles - usually due, of course, to years of oppression, that you agree with the blatant racist: I am inferior to you."

It was a shocking realization for a number of my progressive friends.

I submit that the same argument is true of the egalitarian movement currently assaulting God's church.



Here's a sample from a recent blog post:


Would you want to become a Christian if you were told that your role in church would be limited, solely because of your gender?
That because of your gender, you would never be allowed to teach or to lead in any strategic way.That because of your gender, you would be expected to wait for others to initiate?
This post illuminates sexism, to be sure...but not of the sort the author believes exists.
Would you want to become a parent, dear man, if you were told that your role as a parent would be limited, solely because of your gender?That because of your gender, you would never be allowed to give birth or breastfeed?  For at least a year you wouldn't contribute to your child's nutritional intake in any meaningful way?
Of course, it would be preposterous to think my husband is less of a parent because he did not give birth to our children.  Only a short-sighted person thinks breastfeeding is all there is to parenting.
Likewise, it is absurd to think that teaching in front of a gathered congregation is the only meaningful teaching that a Christian does.  Only a short-sighted person thinks that influence is only had among Christians by those who stand in front.
What the egalitarian movement is really saying is that the only valuable roles in God's church are those God has designated for men.  Like my progressive college buddies, egalitarians are benevolently sexist.
What they believe is that men's roles are more valuable than women's roles.  If they didn't believe this, they wouldn't characterize women's roles as of lesser value than men's roles - and demand that women have equal access to the roles God has allocated to men.
In so doing, they expose not only their sexism, but their misunderstanding of the Kingdom of God.
Tell me what man, behind a pulpit, has as much sway over his congregation's spirituality as a mother does over her children's.  No preacher can influence a man's spirituality as much as that man's wife has opportunity to influence it.
Tell me what man, leading a class or song, has as much impact on the people in the pews as I have over my children at the lunch table, or in their beds as I pray with them.
The idea that the only people in the Kingdom with any opportunity to teach or influence are the men in leadership positions in the congregation is misinformed.
In fact, the biggest complaint I have seen from egalitarian men is that women shouldn't be relegated to teaching VBS and baking cookies.

Here's what Jesus says:
The greatest among you will be your servant. (Matthew 23:11)
God doesn't say that the position of honor in His Kingdom is the man teaching the lesson at the front of the room, but the humblest of servants, wherever he or she is serving.  
Egalitarians have turned that upside down.
There's the bigger problem with the egalitarian push: it ignores God's Word.  
Sure, a specific woman might be a better preacher than a specific man - but God has allowed arenas for that outlet (female speakers, authors, bloggers, etc...) - just not in a leadership position in His Church.
We might think we know as well as God, but He has a different opinion:
"For My thoughts are not your thoughts, Nor are your ways My ways," declares the LORD. (Isaiah 55:8)
The question is, as it always is isn't it, whom we will listen to: man (and woman), or God.

2 comments:

  1. I appreciate your boldness! I think of the apostle Paul and he asked for prayer that he would speak boldly AS HE OUGHT!

    This sure is a good tweet line :)

    Tell me what man, behind a pulpit, has as much sway over his congregation's spirituality as a mother does over her children's. No preacher can influence a man's spirituality as much as that man's wife has opportunity to influence it.

    ReplyDelete

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