Where the Church Failed pt 3

How did it come to this? – Theoden, son of Thinger

I’ve done two previous articles discussing how the church missed the mark so badly.  They both have been well-read and received and I’ve gotten some feedback on the series from both sides. In this article, I’m going to address another area where the church failed. As I say every time I bring up something controversial, I suspect some of you all will stop following me but it needs to be said.  The church has failed to properly distinguish the roles of men and women and how they interact with the culture.

There is a reason why this given topic came up. I was at a broomball (YouTube it if you want to know what it is) tournament over the weekend where, for the first time in my life, I was labeled a misogynist. Why would such a label be attached to me? Because I agreed with basic biology, ie that men and women excel at different things.  Unfortunately, this is becoming an incredibly common and the church has not adequately addressed it.

In fact, the church has not only not addressed the issue, but it has also further muddied the waters by ordaining women ministers and placing women in positions of authority that are not warranted.  I’ve addressed this issue before, but it bears repeating again. It is not God’s design for women to lead worship. It never has been and no amount of posturing by church leaders will serve to make it so.

However, just saying what women are not to do, does not establish what women are meant to do, nor does it tell us anything about men’s roles.  Therefore, we need to go to the Scripture to understand what the Scripture tells us about the roles of men and women. Genesis 2:18-24 tells us the purpose of women.

“And the LORD God said, It is not good that the man should be alone; I will make him an help meet for him.  And out of the ground the LORD God formed every beast of the field, and every fowl of the air; and brought them unto Adam to see what he would call them: and whatsoever Adam called every living creature, that was the name thereof.  And Adam gave names to all cattle, and to the fowl of the air, and to every beast of the field; but for Adam there was not found an help meet for him.  And the LORD God caused a deep sleep to fall upon Adam, and he slept: and he took one of his ribs, and closed up the flesh instead thereof; And the rib, which the LORD God had taken from man, made he a woman, and brought her unto the man.  And Adam said, This is now bone of my bones, and flesh of my flesh: she shall be called Woman, because she was taken out of Man.  Therefore shall a man leave his father and his mother, and shall cleave unto his wife: and they shall be one flesh.”

The woman was created to be a help meet for the man. The Hebrew word for help meet is “ezer”. The word literally means an “aid”. So woman was created to be an aid for the man.  This does NOT mean that the woman is somehow less than man.  The following analogy is helpful. Consider a surgery.  Is the doctor performing more important than the anethiologist who put the patient to sleep, or the nurses monitoring the patient’s vital signs? The correct answer is all of the above. Just because one performs a different, or less complicated role does not mean either role is less valuable.  All are necessary to ensure the patient doesn’t die during the surgery.

There is a lot more to work out here than there is space in this article, but the Bible goes on to define explicit roles for men and women in both the Old Testament and New Testament.  In each case, the created order is upheld. The woman’s role is always to help and assist the man in his God-given responsibilities.

The church has failed to communicate this clearly, if at all. Either the church has taken it to the far extreme of women should never leave their homes and are only useful as wives and mothers, or has gone the other way and said that women should do all the same things as men up to and including preaching. Neither position is Biblical.  In upcoming articles, I’ll be examing both positions and explaining why both are not supported by the Biblical text. So stay tuned for those.

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