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Missing The Sales Pitch

While the Christo-feminists are mind-numbingly repetitive, it is instructive to be reminded of the sales job that is being performed in the name of modern marriage. This time, we have Matt Walsh telling us that we should just forget everything that is going on and just run right out and sign up to be a slave husband to a wife. Of course, it’s always in the guise of “encouragement” (isn’t it always?), when it is really just feminist shaming language. As Walsh writes:

We are, without a doubt, the most marriage-averse group in human history.

Every generation leaves its own mark on the world, and this is ours. Rejecting an institution that is integral to our advancement as a species; that will be our legacy. Maybe our kids — the dozen or so we collectively produce — will continue this process of self-destruction by being the first to voluntarily give up on water and oxygen.

Who knows? We can’t tell them how to live, man.

You really can’t tell anyone how to live. Men are increasingly becoming more educated as to what marriage means and represents in this modern society. Matt Walsh plainly isn’t one of those, as his child-like hubris comes out:

Look, I’ve been young and single. In fact, I’ve been more single than many of you, as I lived completely on my own — no roommates or live-in girlfriends — for the first five years of my twenties. And I’ve also been young and married with kids and responsibilities. If I could choose between the two, I’d take young and married every time, without a doubt.

You won’t hear this from very many people anymore, but this is my advice: get married young. Have kids. Don’t be scared of growing up.

Notably, he has to get the typical Peter Pan charge in. The fact that men are rejecting marriage should be a wake-up call that it must be fixed, not an occasion to double-down on the same things driving people off. Growing up involves making your own decisions, evaluating them for your own interests and health, instead of mindlessly doing what you’re told to do. The fact that the risks behind marriage are being compared to grenades going off or parachutes failing should be a huge sign something is wrong. There is much evidence all over that marriage does not promote maturity or accountability. Continuing:

There isn’t an hourly fee attached to marriage, as far as I’m aware. If there is, I don’t know how I managed to pay it three years ago when my salary was a whopping 400 bucks a week.
. . .
In any case, money or no money, the good news is that marriage is free. Sure, the ceremony might cost you a penny or two or million, but married life doesn’t come with a specific price tag.

Many men have found (as Mr. Walsh himself will have a very high chance of finding out), that there’s an hourly fee attached to the divorce lawyer when the wife inevitably finds herself bored and unhaaaaapy, filing her frivorce. Not to mention, the hourly fee that comes in paying for her fabulous cash and prizes she wins in the process. Marriage always has a cost, and Marriage 2.0 has an extreme cost. It should be no surprise that people are checking out cheaper alternatives. Continuing:

A great many Millennials came of age in this kind of tumultuous, spiritually violent environment. Having seen nothing but failed marriages and bitter divorces — having never witnessed a healthy, stable, married life — they’ve become incredibly jaded.

Marriage is misery, they think, and I can’t blame them for feeling that way. Still, it’s about time they come to understand that their parents made choices. They chose to have that kind of marriage.

You do not have to make the same choice.

Men, Matt Walsh would have you ignore everything you’ve seen. Your parent’s marriage, other people’s marriages, the pathetic shells that married men are reduced to, the man-up rants, the insane proclamations not fitting God’s pattern of marriage like “I want to please [B: "submit to" looking at the full context] my wife because I love her.” (1), and other things.

The point is, instead of seeking to understand the causes of such things in order to fix marriage, it gets distilled down to choices. When marriage as it stands today is fully anti-God, the only wise choice is not to play.

A prudent man foreseeth the evil, and hideth himself: but the simple pass on, and are punished. (Proverbs 22:3)

Prudent men are educating themselves and seeing the evil for what it is and staying away. Others, meanwhile will choose to not hear the warnings, and just say that if only I choose the right one, it’ll be okay. But they will meet their fate:

Second, a big advantage to marriage is that it gives you the wonderful opportunity to traverse the peaks and valleys of life with your husband or wife beside you.
. . .
When you pour your energies and efforts into serving and loving your spouse, raising your children, and guiding your family, you’ll find that, inevitably, you grow and mature in the process.
. . .
This is what our culture wants of us. It wants us to whittle away an entire decade pretending that we’re still teenagers on spring break.

But I think we’re capable of more than that.

Unbeknownst to Walsh, he argues that your youth in your 20’s is best spent, and is so much better in those valleys with a wife in your ear telling you what a failure you are, the church doing the same thing, urging that “guiding the family” involves submitting to the wife in all things, and then watching as the wife casts you and the marriage aside for a less “boring” man. Then you get to watch the church support her and chew into you for it. Not to mention that wonderful opportunity of having your children raised by someone else, seeing the family destroyed, and oh yes paying out those fabulous cash and prizes. You definitely grow and mature in that process, right? Mr. Walsh is going to get a very harsh wake-up call someday.

As men, we are learning that we’re capable of more than that.

Related: So You Want Me To Man-Up And Marry That Slut?

(1) Not A Fan by Kyle Idleman, p 78.

Book Review: Real-Life Discipleship by Jim Putman

Real-Life Discipleship: Building Churches That Make Disciples. Jim Putman. NavPress, 2010.

Jim_Putman_RLD

There seems to be a great interest at the moment in churches of the notion of discipleship. As a result, there have been a number of authors who have written different books about the subject. This book is one of them that have crossed my path in my interests in both finding different insights and thoughts, and studying the things that the churches are doing. As relayed before, this is a topic that has become of interest in the name of gaining numbers into the churches, and more chiefly retaining them. This is the focus that Jim Putman writes from in his book – the inside cover asking “Would you like to see your church body thrive and grow in numbers and maturity?”

Putman aims to relay the things that he does in his Real-Life Ministries in the course of the book. He begins by describing the rationale he has for what he is to lay out, and then provides a lesson of what discipleship means using Matthew 4:19. The book then begins to lay out Putman’s model for discipleship. Putman describes his reasons that it should be laid out into a process: that it should be intentional, relational, and reproducible. Then he lays out a model of maturity, describing that people are spiritually dead, spiritual infants, spiritual children, spiritual young adults, or spiritual parents.

Functionally, the book offers some things to think about. Putman comes at the issue of discipleship in a way that is mostly correct, but in a basic way. It may offer something that is unfamiliar to the basic individual who has never genuinely studied their Bible. This is a concern, since the book is primarily addressed to those who are in leadership of churches who should already be aware of these things.

The big problem that is presented though, is that Putman seeks to distill a spiritual activity within the Church into a process or procedure, akin to a business. The fact that he names his last chapter “Creating a Leadership Development Factory” drives this point home. One common problem with the rise of business is the application of worldly ways into the church:

Beware lest any man spoil you through philosophy and vain deceit, after the tradition of men, after the rudiments of the world, and not after Christ. (Colossians 2:8)

This is exceeding more common as the practices of the church-growth movement become more common-place. Churches have been made more and more into business organizations with policies and procedures set out to define specific results. In the process of moving to the world’s ways, the church becomes corrupted. Putnam attempts to deal with the issue presented in the person of the discouragement of a counselor friend, discounting the problem. However, he inadvertently scrapes at the problem:

Organization itself is not the problem. And because organization is not the problem, moving to an unorganized church model will not be the solution. (p 11)

The problem the “counselor friend” notes is not one of the existence of organization or order, but of the organization (e.g. Churchianity). Having an entity in place to keep going causes a split of allegiance (Matthew 6:24), not to mention represents idolatry in the replacement of God’s church with a worldly-entity created by man. The question becomes then (unaddressed by Putnam), in the guise of “discipling people into Christ”, are you actually doing that, or discipling the people into the organization men have created and are serving?

The consequences of driving an activity that happens with people, using the mindset of manufacturing a product, into a set of man-made policies and procedures should become evident. Legalism becomes inevitable when people do not fit into the exact specifications that these men have laid out, leading to a lack of love. Love sees the potential of what people become, not what men say that they should be. While a few interesting points of thought can be garnered out of this work, it firmly represents a tool of the church-growth movement. May the reader beware of what they find in this book.

Rating: 6 out of 10.

Image Source: Amazon.com

Book Review: God’s Politics by Jim Wallis

God’s Politics: Why the Right Gets It Wrong and the Left Doesn’t Get It. Jim Wallis. Harper San Francisco, 2006.

Gods_Politics_Jim_Wallis

In searching for a book to address the issue of faith as it is applicable to politics, I happened upon Jim Wallis’ book. Not knowing anything about him or Sojourners (his group), I purchased the book. Written in 2006, much of it addresses the events of the younger Bush administration. Like many, I’ve been frustrated with the way faith has been treated within the realm of politics during that era, and found the promise of a Biblical viewpoint interesting. However, this book falls very short of what it advertises to be in the title and on the back page.

The book begins by discussing the appropriateness of faith in politics, the danger of having the expression of faith appropriated by government and political parties, and the proper way that faith should express itself. Given what I’ve studied about the role of the church, I found these topics in the first six chapters very interesting and refreshing.

However, Wallis proceeds to lay out a political platform that is shockingly progressive through the rest of the book. In discussing terrorism, the war in Iraq, Middle Eastern peace, poverty, business ethics, abortion, capital punishment, racism, and family & community values, his solutions inevitably do not involve the Godly, but involve progressivism / liberalism. These solutions almost always involve the government or international organizations such as the United Nations, instead of firm Biblical ones. In this sense, Wallis commits the very thing he calls the Bush administration out for – turning the government into a Christian idol.

In doing so, Wallis commits the same error that he lambasts the right wing for doing – equating his own political views with ways consistent with the Scriptures. In other words, instead of seeking to be on God’s side, he professes that God is on his side with his views. In doing this, he either ignores Biblical doctrine (for instance capital punishment, abortion & homosexuality) or proof-texts Scripture in the case of using prophetic texts which have their ultimate fulfillment in the second coming of Christ, rendering them as teachings.

Gods_Politics_Jim_Wallis_2

Even where Wallis has good points such as the fear-based response to terrorism, the co-option of God into the United States in a theology of empire, the poor general attitude in the United States towards poverty, lack of morality in business (remember Enron?), they are ruined by his own prideful theological missteps in proposing solutions.

Wallis laments the general abrasiveness he meets in “the Religious Right” for sticking to abortion and homosexuality as issues (Wallis is supportive of the premeditated murder of children, and believes that pro-homosexuality is pro-family). But there is no statement or sign that he might get this is because these things are plainly outlawed in Scripture, that his side is incredibly hostile to the historical orthodox Christian faith, and that they might be judging the fruit of Wallis and his compatriots and finding them not of true faith. It should be no surprise given these things that the Democrats are unable to reach the typical Christian vote as he laments.

In the end, while the premise of the book was indeed important, the result was incredibly disappointing. The only thing this book did was attempt to package the progressive leftist agenda as “Christian”, proclaiming that “God is a Democrat”. Meanwhile, Wallis lambasts the right wing for doing the same thing. Wallis’ arrogance seeps through the pages in countless repetitive anecdotes and lack of submission to Christ through the Scriptures. While certain parts further the understanding of the role of the Church in public life, most of the other parts are so abhorrent that the book would be more accurately titled “My Politics” or even “Satan’s Politics”.

At this time, given the sorry state of the churches in the United States today and the United States itself, voices prompting the vision of God and pushing His ways into the culture are desperately needed. However, Wallis and his ilk do not represent the voices that are needed to do this as illustrated by this book. Definitely avoid it.

Rating: 2 out of 10.

Image Source: Amazon.com

Confusing Status With Action – Creating Supplicating Betas

Deep Strength responded to my newest post. (see others relating to the topic here and here).

One reason I’ve continued these posts, and made the original response, is that it is truly a formative issue. As I discussed before, if a woman is to submit, she needs something worthy to submit to. In other words, she needs a man that carries himself with authority and holds authority well. When a man doesn’t, you end up with a supplicating beta. Instead of holding authority in his life, he begs to others and holds back in the name of being nice. Instead of holding authority, he begs and bargains with his wife to not rebel against Him. This is only furthered by such things as Deep Strength has been writing:

They are incompatible. You have to examine them as two separate fraweworks. Most of this post will be on distinguishing between the two framworks, with reasoning on why headship is not exactly authority as stated from the Scriptures.

To cut to the chase, the issue with his posts is the creation of a separate model out of whole cloth (authority-submission), which is not consistent either with the meanings or usages of the word. In the process of complicating matters and giving women free license to rebellion, he confuses the issue of status with action. He would do well to see how words are used in the Scriptures, instead of staying in the Greek concordances. This is further illustrated here:

Paideuo is only used in the context of a parent-child relationship which is an authority-obedience relationship and not of the husband-wife which is a headship-submission relationship.

Note that I plainly stated that the word is used in application to the Scriptures as well. This decouples the use of the word from any relationship that is specified.

Now I will explain the error in play. Headship reflects one kind of status. “Boss” represents another. Generically, we can call that a “leader”. As I posted here, the word “head” is best understood as master, ruler, chief. Barnes goes on (1 Corinthians 11:3) to say that Christ is the ruler, director, or Lord of the Christian man. The verse then extends things to the man and the woman, which makes it legitimate to also say that the husband is the ruler, director, or Lord of the Christian wife. This is consistent with the dictionary as well:

noun 1. the position of head or chief; chief authority; leadership; supremacy.

So headship is a noun (a person). Authority is quite different though in nature:

1 the power to determine, adjudicate, or otherwise settle issues or disputes; jurisdiction; the right to control, command, or determine.
2. a power or right delegated or given; authorization: Who has the authority to grant permission?

So a head, ruler, or leader possesses authority – a person is never simply “an authority” in the hierarchy of things. Simply seeing how the word is used brings this to light. Scripture is clear that Christ, as head, has authority over His Church. He then delegates that authority to husbands in Christian marriage. The “head” is a status, “authority” is something to be exercised as part of the privilege of being “head”.

Let’s look at some Scripture (three examples out of many):

For I am a man under authority, having soldiers under me: and I say to this man, Go, and he goeth; and to another, Come, and he cometh; and to my servant, Do this, and he doeth it. (Matthew 8:9)

For though I should boast somewhat more of our authority, which the Lord hath given us for edification, and not for your destruction, I should not be ashamed: That I may not seem as if I would terrify you by letters. (2 Corinthians 10:8-9)

These things speak, and exhort, and rebuke with all authority. Let no man despise thee. (Titus 2:15)

Authority is best thought of as an authorization from a leader or head to do something.

Christ is head over all things to the church. If Jesus and the Church is husbands and wives, then husbands are head over all things to their wives. This comes with a commensurate authority. Finally, the Scripture that applies directly to the issue:

Let the woman learn in silence with all subjection. But I suffer not a woman to teach, nor to usurp authority over the man, but to be in silence. (1 Timothy 2:11-12)

Most of the other Bible versions translate this section very similarly. A woman shall not usurp authority, exercise authority, or exercise dominion over the man. If authority is not a factor in Christian marriage, then this Scripture becomes nonsensical. If a woman can usurp authority, then that must mean that the man/husband possesses it as a component of the DS’s correct headship-submission model.

Simply put, as the Centurion illustrates, and described here, submission can not exist in and of itself and must be performed to those in authority. DS’s separate model encourages authority to not be exercised and therefore eroded. This only results in an inversion of the marriage roles. If a husband does not hold authority over his wife, his wife will hold authority over him. Genesis 3:16 guarantees this.

There is one other major error that has existed throughout all of Deep Strength’s post: Everyone has free will. We are never forced into obedience in any capacity, ever. Not in the Old Covenant, not in the New Covenant. We can refuse to obey God, the government, His word. Wives can refuse to obey husbands. Husbands can refuse to obey Christ. Everyone has free will. However, those in authority (God, bosses, husbands) can (and ultimately must to keep their authority) respond to disobedience with certain measures. The presence of this authority explains my observation of how wives submit to their bosses more faithfully than their own husbands, as well as the erosion of the fitness of marriage for the average man today.

Why are there so many supplicating betas in the churches? This is why. Men are taught from a very young age that they are not “loving” if they exercise any authority, are never supported as heads of their families, and then actively cut down in that capacity. Since authority has been decoupled from Christian marriage, as well as the Church, all a husband is reduced to is begging and pleading and hoping that his wife will lead the family in the way that is right before God, submitting to her all the while.

Headship in Marriage Implies Authority

Since Deep Strength provided a very quick response to my last post, I thought I’d do the same. While there is very little that directly addresses my last post, there is some that warrants some comment.

Deep Strength espouses the typical religious feminist model of marriage, and only furthers it in his current post. If such a distinction is to be taken as he describes, then the natural next step from women is “I don’t have to submit to that evil evil man!”. There’s no force stopping her either, as the Church has recognized the right of woman to be in rebellion to God, using rationales much like Deep Strength’s. No chastening can come from either the husband or the Church, in other words. I’ve dealt with several feminists that have used the exact arguments in his post, that the requirement to submit is an artifact of The Fall and is negated with Christ, to completely negate Ephesians 5 and other Scriptures that define marriage. DS puts himself on very dangerous ground, as well, to indicate the dynamic of marriage has changed in any way from the days of Adam and Eve, especially since the dynamic has not changed by God’s directive (it has changed by man’s doctrine). Deep Strength goes on to write:

However, based on the Greek word study I did it seems that the headship-submission model puts both husbands and wives in a position where they must fully trust in the Lord and not rely on “authority” or “consequences” or the “state” in order to win their spouses to Christ even if they say they are Christian but don’t act like it.

The point of issue when it comes to authority is the man over himself and his possessions. This was my primary concern in that post, not that the husband was the one to “call the shots”. The feminist model has removed these things, as Deep Strength’s first post illustrates. All these are hers without question. This is “fully trusting in the Lord” as Deep Strength puts it. The husband has no authority over himself, much less the marriage as head. This is the whole issue with respect to marriage – such arguments invert the marriage relationship, rendering the wife as head and the husband as the one who submits. But this leads to the real problem that Deep Strength has with his theology:

Just as we don’t see “abuse” (of any sort) as a legitimate reason for divorce for wives, we also don’t see the ability to impose direct consequences on wives as the husbands as the headship model does not confer such authority.

The Father isn’t interested in compelling those who are adult — husbands and wives — to obey as one might a child.

This literally constitutes a direct denial of the Scriptures that I posted previously about chastening. The Greek word used in Hebrews 12:5-8 is paideuo (G3811), which indicates this same chastening as a child receives from a parent (a derivative of the word occurs in Ephesians 6:4, paideia (G3809). It also occurs in 2 Timothy 3:16 in relationship to the Scriptures. The function of chastening is a very real New Testament function – after all, why would God be referred to as the Father if He is to not function as such? Continuing:

He is interested in those who are under such circumstances to love as he would (which means teaching, correcting, rebuking and training as husbands) and winning husbands without a word (1 peter 3) as wives.

DS recognizes these things, but then doesn’t recognize the authority of husbands to do these things as head. If Jesus and the Church is Husbands and Wives, then surely the husband has the right to give and take away from his wife and children, as much as God has the right to do so with His children. This was the whole issue of the last post. Does the husband have the right to chasten his wife the same as the Lord God has the right to chasten His children? God’s the same yesterday today and tomorrow right? Deep Strength says no. Perhaps he doesn’t recognize the issue at hand for husbands. Walk a mile in one’s shoes, right?:

For example, the husband is not bound by the actions and thus consequences of the rebellion of his wife. In the OT, the husband is responsible for the actions of both his children and wife and has to bear the consequences when they act out. But with the restoration of headship-submission if the wife gets herself into consequences of her own choosing the husband does not have to bear the burden of such responsibility. This is how it is supposed to be from the beginning.

Being bound as tightly to another person as one flesh, the husband can not help but be bound to the actions and consequences of the rebellion of his wife. This was the whole issue with dvdivx, and the issue that requires a good husband to take action in authority over himself and his wife as head of the marriage. The money issue I mentioned in the last post is another. If he doesn’t have the right to act in response to the wife as the head of the marriage, then he is just sunk along with her.

Ultimately this is the true difference between headship and simple authority – simply the state of the union between the members involved. If there was ever a thing called authority in marriage, it has always existed in God’s plan.

Furthermore, DS has a very skewed view of how marriage and family life works. As a child, my parents were very bound by the consequences of my actions. If I went around throwing rocks through windows as a young boy, they were the ones that had to pay for the repairs. Of course, my parents were free to then chastise me as they saw fit, but I wouldn’t have been the one that would have had to answer to the others (and the cops) for the vandalism.

Before the feminist reforms, marriage used to work in this same way for 1900 years after Christ. One of the more interesting discussions in Men On Strike was the idea of coverture. This idea presupposed that the wife acts under the husband’s direction under the law, meaning he had both authority and responsibility over her assets – if any decision was made in the family, he was to make it or approve of it. This is because the marriage unit was considered one person under the law with the husband as head, fitting Biblical teaching. Interestingly, wives hold coverture rights over husbands now, partly because of the erosion of authority illustrated in these posts.

Historically, husbands have been very responsible for their wives. Even to the present day, this could be argued. While “separate responsibility” is a laudable idea, it is just not workable in the idea of marriage. She will act, and he will feel the consequences of those actions, regardless of who is “responsible” for them or not. Marriage is “one flesh” after all – in such a situation, responsibility becomes irrelevant. If one is to judge in terms of “responsibility”, as was stated in the comments, then justice is required. Ideally and practically, the husband functions as first agent to accomplish such justice since he is the head of the marriage, and then the Church. Yet Deep Strength would leave husbands crying out for justice, and the sin would fall on their heads because all the Lord would say to them is “go take care of it, you’re the head of the marriage.” But under DS’s ideology, they can’t.

Ultimately, the message that seems to come out of this is how corrupt things have gotten in marriage, simply because of the skewed idea of what headship entails. The authority (or rights, if you want to use another word) indicated by the headship has been completely eroded, while the historical responsibility indicated by it remains. The calls of the religious feminists to men to “man up and lead their families” ring hollow simply because they do not have the authority behind it. In the end, the wives are the ones doing the leading. This is the whole goal behind the erosion of husbandly authority. All that results is the inversion of marriage roles, creating an abomination to God.

Negating Authority In Marriage

In the previous post, commenter dvdivx writes:

So far the Christian solution to seriously misbehaving spouses is simply to ignore the matter entirely or just pretend it’s not happening. Tell that to my kids that are learning that marriage means no sex, no intimacy and no love. Good thing they learn what modern marriage is about early then.

He hits upon a common problem in marriage since the advent of feminism: The removal of the use of authority by husbands in their marriages. As illustrated in that previous post, feminists of all stripes have sought to remove the Godly requirement for a wife to submit to her own husband. They have done this by fomenting women against the idea of marriage, using the typical marxist arguments. But most notably it’s done by the erosion of the authority of husbands, which has been executed very well in both the secular and traditional worlds. This has been done so well that most men forget that they have a say over what happens in their own houses, and are set up in the frustration of being called to “lead their families” – in other words be given the responsibility over his wife and children without any authority to carry it out.

The model excusing female responsibility for their actions in marriage.

The model excusing female responsibility for their actions in marriage.

As further illustrated in a number of comments, the recognition that there is something wrong. As Crimson Viceroy writes:

It never truly dawns upon them that the problem can solely be created by the other party and that retroactive and reactive punishment has to ensue. We don’t live in a perfect world, and therefore our countermeasures against rebellion will be imperfect, but I’d rather err on the side of caution rather than his “compassion based” baloney . . . They both employ the same strategy…shame, ridicule, lecture, and attempt to “fix” men instead of focusing on where the majority of the problem is…in the free-will and free-agency-based choices women make. They are responsible for the choices they make, both good and bad, so it’s time they took up their own crosses instead of attempting to find ways to affix men to such extra-biblical and almost anti-biblical burdens.

This leads us to the addressing of Deep Strength’s posts and comments, which prompted this. The point that comes out:

The love of a wife has become the right of the wife to not be chastened by her husband.

DS negates the right of the exercise of authority. In other words, there is an option #4. But that option is ignored to the point it’s not taught (note that no one realizes this is an option in the conversation), and when exercised, the State is ready to punish the husband for domestic abuse. This is endemic of Marriage 2.0, the idea that instead of marriage representing a forward looking vision of Christ and the Church, the marriage is to represent Jesus’s sacrifice on the Cross. Without effective authority over his wife, the husband is merely rendered into a beast of burden to fulfill her wishes.

The problem in seeing such a change is illustrated by Deep Strength’s posts, which are mostly correct. He points out the function of Jesus to rebuke and correct, but does not recognize this in terms of marriage. As he writes:

However, for those in an authoritative position such as husbands there is no requirement that if the wife doesn’t live up to her end of the marriage that the husband should stop loving her. The husband must continue to provide for them because it comes with that position. In this case, if the husband loves her he SHOULD BE attempting to chastise or correct the wife if she is off track. But it also does not absolve him of his responsibilities in the marriage.

The problem here is that DS connects anything that the wife receives from her husband as an obligation and not anything out of love. Attempting to correct or chastise a wife (or child as a matter of fact) without real consequence is ultimately fruitless. She would have no cause or reason to listen to her husband, as I illustrated here with the example of the wife spending the family into bankruptcy:

If a husband today sanctions his wife for buying too much under credit, she just scoffs at him and continues. She knows he can’t do a single thing to stop her if she continues. If he continues to challenge her authority as head of the marriage, she can use the State and claim that he is abusing her (as all uses of Godly husbandly authority is). If he continues his rebellion against his wife’s authority, she can then proceed to crush him in family court for cash and prizes, leaving him destitute. She will get what she wants, no matter what it takes. The Church and the State will support her.

Properly loving his wife becomes “Yes dear, whatever you want dear”, in this view of love that Deep Strength and others espouses. DS only compounds the problem here:

Husbands have the command to love their wives, even if they are enemies under their own roofs.

So as stated above, the ability to chasten is removed from the definition of what it means for a husband to love his wife. What is it that is being missed?

And ye have forgotten the exhortation which speaketh unto you as unto children, My son, despise not thou the chastening of the Lord, nor faint when thou art rebuked of him: For whom the Lord loveth he chasteneth, and scourgeth every son whom he receiveth. If ye endure chastening, God dealeth with you as with sons; for what son is he whom the father chasteneth not? But if ye be without chastisement, whereof all are partakers, then are ye bastards, and not sons. (Hebrews 12:5-8)

As many as I love, I rebuke and chasten: be zealous therefore, and repent. (Revelation 3:19)

For whom the Lord loveth he correcteth; even as a father the son in whom he delighteth. (Proverbs 3:12)

Faithful are the wounds of a friend; but the kisses of an enemy are deceitful. (Proverbs 27:12)

The loving husband without authority becomes nothing but this.

The loving husband without authority becomes nothing but this.

See a theme? Correction and rebuke is a part of love. Love requires that the right path be kept before the Lord. In this day and age of the Personal Jesus and Marriage 2.0, both God and the husband are rendered impotent of authority. All of what a husband has is considered hers without reservation, and how hateful he is for withholding it or even daring to question her! No wonder marriage is such a poor witness of God these days, and no wonder how unfit it is for any man! Note how controversial even a minor consequence was from a husband to a wife, much less the ones historically proscribed for a wife refusing the marital debt like dvdivx has.

The same goes for what Jesus has been made into in the modern church. What is important ceases to be righteousness and following Him, but the idea of romantic love. The Jesus that loves you and has nothing but grace for you no matter what you do. The one that doesn’t bring any consequences to you for hatred of His words, and willfully disobeying Him. All He is now to most is the perfect lover who requires nothing and gives everything.

Does it not seem that many men will be accused in the end of not loving their wives simply because they tolerated the rebellion of their wives against God and refused to chasten them? How many would proclaim that it is not love but hate illustrated by how Hosea was to chasten Gomer and by extension how God chastened Israel?

How wonderful and revolutionary it would be if love is seen by a wife because she is chastened by her husband in the Lord? That husbands see chastening their wives in the Lord as a function of loving a wife? And that society supports it all? How wonderful and how revolutionary would marriage be if it actually followed God’s pattern instead of the debased pattern of men?

Anarchy In The Marriage

The modern feminist concept of mutual submission was brought up in the last post. The idea begs a definition.

Defining Mutual Submission
To start defining mutual submission, the modern feminist assumption that men and women are exactly equivalent is assumed:

In other words, they see men and women as wholly interchangeable, their differences as purposeless accidents that exist without reason, and any God-given hierarchy as something to be avoided. This mindset is otherwise known as egalitarianism. As was mentioned, this teaching came into Churchianity from secular feminism, who sees women as exactly equal to men in some cases and greater than men in others. It then found its voice in a religious expression as all feminist concepts do, from those who are desiring to wed their feminism to any form of Christian expression.

The basis of egalitarianism is discussed here, the concept of egalitarianism is debunked there, and is dealt with here as well. Regardless, Scripture is bent and twisted to the wishes of these feminists to fit their own doctrines, instead of them conforming themselves to God’s doctrine. Simply put, practicing the ideology of feminism is an act of rebellion against God.

God's hierarchy of authority

God’s hierarchy of authority

Now, if we presume an arrangement where rigidly defined gender roles (the feminist’s term) do not exist, then the question becomes how the proper marriage is to be arranged. The answer the feminists hit upon is the idea of mutual submission. The idea of submission, in and of itself, presupposes a hierarchy of authority and hence order. While this does not exist in the feminist world because a role lends to a degree of authority and therefore obligation before God, the weight of Scripture (1 Cor 12:26; Eph 4:10-11; 1 Cor 15:26-27; Eph 1:20-23; Romans 13:1 among many others) indicates much differently. The Greek word (hupotasso) appears in 32 verses of the New Testament, all indicating an authority, and a subject to that authority. Among those is Ephesians 5:21, and Ephesians 5:22. But the feminists would presume a different meaning for these two verses, limiting them. Ephesians 5:21 is grouped with Ephesians 5:22, to avoid the force of the latter verse, and then v21 is subsequently twisted in meaning to mean that husbands must submit to wives and wives must submit to husbands.

If there is submission without authority, then the concept of submission becomes meaningless.

When there is no authority, submission becomes voluntary. So when feminists refer to a doctrine of mutual submission in marriage, they mean:

[Egalitarians] argue that in the marriage relationship neither the husband nor the wife is “top dog.” Neither is the leader of the family. They are both leaders, and they both follow the other as each follows Christ. Their relationship is one of mutuality. For example, decisions must be made together, and mutual agreement is required before acting. No one person holds veto power over the other.

Now practically, this turns into anarchy. This is because if the husband decides to do one thing, and the wife another, then how are things resolved to an action? Ultimately nothing can be done in a marriage where the two disagree. As one would have to unconditionally yield to the other for something to be done (practitioners often rationalize based on ability, but ability does not indicate authority), often the two will then act independently of one another, as one will not have authority over the other. The whole concept is then shown for the irrelevancy it entails.

But wait! Add in the typical teaching to men that they are to honor, love, and cherish their wives, which is far from excepted for men. This is changed in meaning that women are to feel loved instead of be loved. Then add in feminist dogma in the culture that states that women are to be respected, which is patently unscriptural. The result you get is the supplicating mangina who follows after the approval of his wife. If not, there’s always the government willing to step in to enforce its interests.

The whole goal of the concept of mutual submission is to invert the authority and roles of marriage for those who believe the feminist dogma. In the same way, the concepts of servant leadership and headship theology invert the roles for those who are less inclined to claim feminism as a way of thought.

Correcting the Record
As I mentioned above, there are 32 verses in the New Testament where hupotasso (or hypotasso) appears, and many more where subjection and an authority are indicated. The weight of the 30 other verses are ignored.

Then as mentioned, Ephesians 5:21 and 22 are coupled together out of context. Reading the passages will reveal this:

See then that ye walk circumspectly, not as fools, but as wise, Redeeming the time, because the days are evil. Wherefore be ye not unwise, but understanding what the will of the Lord is. And be not drunk with wine, wherein is excess; but be filled with the Spirit; Speaking to yourselves in psalms and hymns and spiritual songs, singing and making melody in your heart to the Lord; Giving thanks always for all things unto God and the Father in the name of our Lord Jesus Christ; Submitting yourselves one to another in the fear of God. (Ephesians 5:15-21)

If you were going to crib an expository sermon outline out of this, there is no other conclusion to this other than it being addressed to all Christians, and not to the concept of Christian marriage. The phrase “one to another” or “one another” is particularly indicative, as it refers to the whole group. That Greek word (allelon) appears in 94 verses referring to groups of both men and women (a small sample).

So if it means everyone, then it means that everyone is to submit in the fear of God one to another. Our God is a God of order and not of chaos. Parsing the rest of Ephesians reveals God-ordained hierarchies of authority:

5:22-23, 31 – Wives submit to and respect their husbands and are subject to them in everything.
5:25,28 – Husbands love their wives as their own bodies.
5:23-25 – Christ head of the church, church subject to Him, Christ loves the church (marriage is a model)
6:1-2 – Children obey your parents (honor thy father and mother).
6:3 – Fathers do not provoke children to wrath, but bring up in admonition of the Lord.
6:5-8 – Servants be obedient to masters as the servants of Christ doing the will of God.
6:9 – Masters give benevolent regard to servants, know you are a servant of the Lord the same.

Mutual submission does not exist in these other cases.

For for this cause pay ye tribute also: for they are God’s ministers, attending continually upon this very thing. Render therefore to all their dues: tribute to whom tribute is due; custom to whom custom; fear to whom fear; honour to whom honour. (Romans 13:6-7)

Furthermore, there are no reciprocal commands (husbands submit to your wives) in any case. As always, there will be those who are defiantly rebelling against the will of the Lord, and creating justifications to believe that they are pleasing to God. Simply put, wives who are rebelling against their husbands are rebelling against God Himself, and storing up His wrath for the time to come. In the end they will find that sowing their rebellion will reap only righteous judgment.

Related:
Mutual Submission?
The Myth of “Mutual Submission”
Complementarianism versus Mutual Submission in Marriage

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