A country forbids its women to drive a car; a church forbids its women to be preachers. Both base it on their religious teaching of male headship. The difference is that in 2018, women in Saudi Arabia will be allowed to drive, while in America, women will still be banned from “driving” leadership in most churches.
They both want to preserve the image of a pious mother. Look at the Danvers Statement Concern #4: “The widespread ambivalence regarding the values of motherhood, vocational homemaking, and the many ministries historically performed by women.”
When I first began my ministry of women’s equality, at a Thanksgiving dinner, a male headship older man asked me who drove the car when Don and I went anywhere. As if that mattered. Don always drove because I didn’t want to, but that had nothing to do with equality. But it does in their minds. A woman was not supposed to be behind the wheel in a marriage or in a car.
A few years ago, A Resolution for Men was real popular. In that Resolution which came from the movie, Courageous, men are told to take back the wheel from their wives. The Resolution is speaking specifically about steering the marriage, but as is often the case, a literal car wheel also works with that theology.
If you could muddle through “Recovering Biblical Manhood and Womanhood: A Response to Evangelical Feminism” you would find this statement:
“Second, the pace of technological and social change within post-industrial societies has made us reserved about the answers of previous generations, and our questioning extends to every aspect of society and church life. In addition, various changes in women’s education, the nature of housework, and the involvement of women in work outside the home have raised many new and difficult questions about the nature of men’s and women’s roles in both family and church.”
This misogynous book was published in 1991 and was, and still is, sponsored by the Council on Biblical Manhood and Womanhood. It continues to be a best-seller. The 482 page book is a collection of male headship writings and teachings of various Christians. John Piper and Wayne Grudem edited this book and it is therefore assumed that they agree with its teachings, for why would anybody put something in a book that they do not agree with? And why would anyone use such a book unless they, too, believe it?
If modern day preachers had their way, women would not be driving cars in America. They would not be working outside the home. They would all be stay-at-home mothers. Who would take them to church to volunteer their services is another matter.
Saudi Arabia was the last country holdout in allowing women to drive. The church is the last holdout in allowing their women to “drive.”
It is 2017. What are you doing for Christian women’s equality in your church?
Visit my website for my books on Women’s equality/