Helpless gals are so last century

‘He’s Just Not a Spiritual Leader,’ and Other Christian Dating Myths was posted a few months ago on Christianity Today but I just came across it.

I find Christianity Today a mixed bag and am not sure if they are egalitarian (equal-no buts) or if they are complementarian (equal-but). This post was from her*meneutics, and it does not fit my definition of egalitarian.

The post says:

“It wasn’t the first time I’d heard the complaint: “He’s not a spiritual leader.” It seems that initiating prayer, Bible study, and other similar devotional activities is a litmus test for male spiritual leadership in some branches of the American church. And the common complaint by women on our campus is that men are failing in spiritual leadership; they aren’t passing the litmus test. They aren’t initiating.”

That is what I find really strange. The scriptures do not say that men are to lead out in Bible study, prayer, or devotionals. In fact, the very idea men are to be the spiritual leaders of their girlfriends, and ultimately, their wives, is Male Headship.

And you all know what I think of male headship.

So the question is not “is he exhibiting leadership qualities,” but “why should he be the one who has to demonstrate leadership qualities?”

Or, to be realistic, “My Goodness, girlfriend! You show me the scripture which tells you that you need a spiritual leader. Can’t you pick up the Bible yourself and read? Can’t you lead out in prayer? You are in college, for Pete’s sake! You have more learning than any woman in 1 or 2 Timothy ever had. You’ve had more Bible study than any woman in the whole Bible ever had. Use it! God gave you a full set of brains! Use them!”

The post goes on to say,

“Further, those of us who are married ought to examine what litmus tests we are using when deciding whether or not our husbands are leading. Our husbands’ leadership styles/gifts and our own may be different. If we give thanks for and honor the gifts and fruits of the Spirit we observe in our husbands, we just might see they are more like Jesus than we imagined.”

Men, I have good news for you. You do not have to lead your wife. Women, I have good news for you. This is the 21st century. You can lead your family. For those of you who doubt this, look to 1 Peter 3:1 and also 1 Corinthians 7:16.

If you want to tell women that they, too, can lead their husbands and their family to faith, will you speak out with me for women’s equality?

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About bwebaptistwomenforequality

Shirley Taylor writes with humor and common sense, challenging the church body to reclaim equality for Christian women.
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6 Responses to Helpless gals are so last century

  1. tiro3 says:

    Husbands and wives should counsel together how to lead their children and their lives as a couple.

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    • Absolutely! In the case where there is no husband, a woman should know that she, too, is capable of leading her family.

      > Date: Wed, 27 Feb 2013 13:31:46 +0000 > To: bwebaptist.women@live.com >

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      • pnissila says:

        Hi, sisters! It’s been awhile since I’ve commented, but only because I’m busy these days. I look forward to reading this blog as much as i can.

        I response to your comment about the need for a woman to lead where there is no husband around, so true. I will go one further.

        I became a Christian many years before my husband came to Christ in a serious way. One day before his decision (and he was not very happy with my newfound spiritual interests) I was pondering the scripture, “as for me and my house, we will serve the Lord.” For some odd reason I thought that declaration was somehow up to the “man of the house,” read, “the head of the house.” Silly me.

        For an instant, I felt really bad for my family, frustrated. Then, as we gently perceive the “voice” of the Holy Spirit, I “heard,” “But YOU are the spiritual head of the house.”

        As the joy of the Lord filled me, (and as nobody else was home), I declared out loud and loudly, several times, “as for me and MY HOUSE, we will serve the Lord!”

        When we deny full voice to the Body of Christ, so to speak, by insisting that one half of the Body of Christ can’t “speak” or do the Lord’s work for some silly reason or other, or because we want control over that half so they will do what we tell them to do, we do GREAT disservice to not only our households, but to the world at large. We truncate the work of the Holy Spirit. And I wouldn’t want to be in the shoes of those who do that, on judgement day.

        The curse of “lordship” in Genesis 3:16 wasn’t a mandate for men. It was a warning for women.

        Where the spirit of the Lord is there is liberty.

        Cheers and blessings,
        Phyllis

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      • Great insight!

        > Date: Fri, 1 Mar 2013 15:44:12 +0000 > To: bwebaptist.women@live.com >

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  2. Sophie says:

    Uh-oh! Sounds like someone is trying to get women to domineer over their husbands! 😉 Just joking. I’ll never understand why so many complementarians equate egalitarianism with female domination.

    Like

    • Some husbands need domineering! They are not all born leaders. To say so puts a terrible strain on all boys and all men. Bruce Ware goes so far as saying that men are sissies when they don’t lead. Ok. He doesn’t use that term, but he calls them “passive.” Just another word for sissie.

      > Date: Wed, 27 Feb 2013 14:14:02 +0000 > To: bwebaptist.women@live.com >

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