Last week I was interviewed by Sarah Neary, a journalist with the Voice of Russia for a Women’s Equality Day article. You can read the article “Women’s Equality Day and ‘legitimate rape’ political climate” and see where I was quoted here.
As I said in the last post, I painted a bleak picture of Christian women in churches today (that part was left out of the article). I was wondering if perhaps I was having tunnel vision and had immersed myself too deeply in the “we need equality” movement. This weekend convinced me that all of us have it right – that women still need to fight for equality in churches.
This weekend I was in North Texas in a hotel across the street from a huge Baptist church and I wondered what they were teaching. Was it submission, or was it equality?
Checking their website I found the Baptist Faith and Message 2000 with just two clicks. This tells you who they are. This tells you what they think of the women in their church. This is what women are willing to accept. It is a slap in the face.
They start with: “As a conservative Southern Baptist church, our core beliefs are based on the Baptist Faith and Message approved by the Southern Baptist Convention in 2000. The following are some of our most important foundational beliefs.”
Inside the BF&M 2000 are these two foundational parts of the BF&M 2000:
While both men and women are gifted for service in the church, the office of pastor is limited to men as qualified by Scripture
The husband and wife are of equal worth before God, since both are created in God’s image. The marriage relationship models the way God relates to His people. A husband is to love his wife as Christ loved the church. He has the God-given responsibility to provide for, to protect, and to lead his family. A wife is to submit herself graciously to the servant leadership of her husband even as the church willingly submits to the headship of Christ. She, being in the image of God as is her husband and thus equal to him, has the God-given responsibility to respect her husband and to serve as his helper in managing the household and nurturing the next generation.
Before the weekend was over, at church I heard about a woman who had attended a church in our area and left because the pastor constantly preached on women submitting to their husbands. She went to another church, and they do the same.
At our CBE Houston Conference a young husband and wife told me that their pastor preached on this often and they knew he was wrong.
Hearts are being stirred. But what is going to happen to those people. The young woman who left one church for another is still in the other church. The problem in our area is that there are few options. Few churches offer women equality.
It is hard to change a mindset of the churches. There is no benefit to the churches. The pastor might lose his job. And why change when women are willing to sit there and listen to this diatribe against them?
Will you join me in speaking out? Speak out for those women who won’t, or who can’t speak out for themselves! Speak out! Speak out for equality.