It surprises me, even with the #metoo and #churchtoo movement, the day and age in which we live, and how far we’ve come as a society, that women still get treated like crap. It amazes me further that it happens in Christianity. It surprises me, but then it doesn’t because I’ve seen it and continue to be witness to it in people who call themselves Christians.
Christians Who Hate Women
Baptists and Calvanists are hands down the biggest misogynists I’ve ever seen or read. That’s a blanket statement, of course, and not meant to paint all Calvanists or Baptists as women haters, but the majority of men (and even women) I’ve talked to has pointed to a very skewed view of women as simply there to please men and shut up otherwise.
It’s not news to me that these men think women are here to please them and do as they say. I’ve been in churches and seen this happen. To the degree it is going on, still is a marvel to me. Is it just me or has the word Christianity become a pseudonym for certifiably insane? These people will twist any verse and bend it to their will.
Christian Bloggers Who Preach Hatred to Women
I was on a blog yesterday and the man, who stated he was Baptist, said it was OK, even biblical, to rape your wife in cases when she wasn’t being compliant (for instance, withholding sex). He went on to show verses in Deuteronomy which talk about this (apparently) and then tied it in with the verse in Ephesians which states you must “obey your husband in every thing”. (I don’t really want to post the link, but here it is. TRIGGER WARNING. If anything, just go report it for promoting rape and abuse. Seriously, the thing made me ill after reading it, so beware.)
I will just quote one thing from his disgusting article to make my point:
I want to quickly address the terminology I am using here. I am using the phrase “forced sex” and gotquestions.org is using “marital rape” or just “rape”. The reason I am using the term “forced sex” instead of “rape” is because the term rape in our language and culture not only denotes an action taken, but it also implies a moral condemnation of that action. Calling “forced sex” rape in our language and culture would be like referring to every instance of killing as murder. I am going to speak more to the term “rape” later on in this article.
Is the word “forced sex” instead of “marital rape” really less disgusting? What in the hell? Just because you change the word, doesn’t mean it’s less repulsive. What a disturbing little man.
If you must, you can go read his obliteration of the Bible to make his point. In the comments, his loyal readers also suggest slapping your wife when she gets out of line. He says this isn’t physical abuse, but biblical and our American views have skewed scripture. I think something is skewed, but it’s not our American views. It’s his scrambled brain and I think therapy and high doses of medication is in order along with being locked away from society.
His main point was that because the Bible doesn’t ever call it rape within a marriage context, it’s not really rape. He goes on to say women can NEVER demand anything from their husbands, but it’s A-OK for the man to demand sex. Because, you know…men.
Let me go off for a second. I’m just appalled that anyone even thinks this way. If this is what YOUR bible says, please throw it in the damn trash can and burn it. I am so sick of men using scripture to do appalling, evil things. What’s next? You can exaggerate, twist, inflate, or do anything to any verse to make it mean what you want. Complementarian men are viciously evil, defending their right to the throne and to abusing women. I’m just sick of it. You are not a Christian, but an evil dictator.
I will defer to 1 Corinthians 13 (emphasis mine):
If I speak in the tongues of men or of angels, but do not have love, I am only a resounding gong or a clanging cymbal. If I have the gift of prophecy and can fathom all mysteries and all knowledge, and if I have a faith that can move mountains, but do not have love, I am nothing. If I give all I possess to the poor and give over my body to hardship that I may boast, but do not have love, I gain nothing.
Love is patient, love is kind. It does not envy, it does not boast, it is not proud. It does not dishonor others, it is not self-seeking, it is not easily angered, it keeps no record of wrongs. Love does not delight in evil but rejoices with the truth. It always protects, always trusts, always hopes, always perseveres.
Love never fails. But where there are prophecies, they will cease; where there are tongues, they will be stilled; where there is knowledge, it will pass away. For we know in part and we prophesy in part, but when completeness comes, what is in part disappears. When I was a child, I talked like a child, I thought like a child, I reasoned like a child. When I became a man, I put the ways of childhood behind me. For now we see only a reflection as in a mirror; then we shall see face to face. Now I know in part; then I shall know fully, even as I am fully known.
And now these three remain: faith, hope and love. But the greatest of these is love.
Marriage is NOT Demanding
If you are genuinely loving your wife, even if she is questioning your “authority” (which is really another topic to explore–how prideful are you?), withholding sex, or simply being moody, then you won’t demand anything from her. Love is not demanding. Jesus never demands we come to him. He doesn’t demand we read our bibles, pray, or have a relationship with him. He is gentle, forgiving, full of grace, and loving. These people who twist scripture and want to make rules that just aren’t there are dangerous. They create their own religions.
James 3 sums up Christianity:
Who is wise and understanding among you? Let them show it by their good life, by deeds done in the humility that comes from wisdom. 14 But if you harbor bitter envy and selfish ambition in your hearts, do not boast about it or deny the truth. 15 Such “wisdom” does not come down from heaven but is earthly, unspiritual, demonic. 16 For where you have envy and selfish ambition, there you find disorder and every evil practice.
17 But the wisdom that comes from heaven is first of all pure; then peace-loving, considerate, submissive, full of mercy and good fruit, impartial and sincere. 18 Peacemakers who sow in peace reap a harvest of righteousness.
Submission For Everyone
Notice, that the book of James doesn’t say that only women are submissive. It says that the wisdom that comes from heaven is submissive. So if you claim Christianity, guess what? You are submissive to each other. Guess he forgot to quote the part in Ephesians 5 where it says, “Submit to one another out of reverence for Christ.” No, the rapist blog author only likes to showcase verse in which women have to be subject to himself.
Trusting the Bible?
Someone told me the other day they can’t trust the Bible because men wrote it. Honestly, that thought has passed my mind. There are things I just can’t seem to understand about the Bible. Why do some verses seem to suggest that women are nothing more than slaves? Why does it seem so misogynistic? And if God doesn’t really care all that much for women, then why should I believe in Him? These are real issues that I face and continue to ponder. I don’t have any real answers, but for now I’ve concluded that scripture can be easily twisted by those who do evil. John Piper likes to say that even Satan can quote scripture. It’s true. (Even John Piper can quote it too in order to shame women into staying in abusive relationships.)
Where does the line get drawn? My Twitter friend, Tim Fall recently said this concerning another article in which women were treated less than (by another woman, no less). He said this:
She wants there to be a line, but has to keep redrawing it to accommodate situations like that.
The rules change based on the rules making no sense. So if the rule doesn’t fit the situation, it can be easily adapted if a male is involved. In this case, it is totally ok for women (specifically, Joni Eareckson Tada) to give a testimony, but not ok for them to teach or preach at men. But if John MacArthur ok’d it, it’s ok. He’s a man of God. See how the line gets redrawn? What exactly is your belief? It keeps changing.
Striving for a Simple Faith
I think that’s true of anyone who makes these bold assumptions about how God feels. Does God really want husbands to rape women? Is he really all that angry that women are talking about him in public? Is God throwing a tantrum because a woman spoke to a crowd of men? I find most of these issues are at best, idiotic, at worst selfish, prideful, and self-serving.
Maybe we muddy the Bible with all our interpretations. This can be said on both sides. We can twist this verse and that verse to make it mean whatever we want. We can explain away hard passages by saying men wrote it. We can call it a fairy tale book with stories and never even bother to read it. But maybe we are doing it all wrong. Maybe if we looked at how Jesus actually lived his life, submitting, loving, having compassion for others (even unlovable others), we wouldn’t be arguing and debating who is first, if it’s ok to rape our wives, or any other self-serving thing. We’d just try to love others and love God the best we could, knowing that we aren’t capable without Him. It might just be as simple as that.
O God… make me a child again, even before I die; give me back the simple faith, the clear vision of the child that holds its father’s hand. – Israel Zangwill