Thinking outside the box

Thinking outside the box

The one thing that God seems to have gifted me with is thinking outside the box.  I quite enjoy reading from others too who have this gift.  It stretches me and gives me that “ah ha” moment which I really love.

Today I had an opportunity to read a blog from someone whom I sense is also gifted with thinking outside the box.

So today I give my first “outside the box” award to “Justa Berean” at http://exegetist-theberean.blogspot.com/

Outside the box

Congratulations and keep up the good work!

16 thoughts on “Thinking outside the box

  1. I enjoyed visiting the site. One thing I found that confused me was the reference to all the ‘single’ apostles. We do know that Peter was married because his mother in law is mentioned.

  2. Hey Lin,

    I did notice that too. I think that Peter is the only apostle that has any references showing that he was married, but yes even though it was 1 out of the 12, there certainly was one married fellow.

  3. Cheryl, could you take your outsidethebox thinking and address an issue about the early church fathers linking origins to traditional headship (male domination) in the worthy boards. Post #139, Family Out of Order thread.

    thanks. I’m running out of steam. 🙂

  4. OopsMartin, I am at your service and you will see my two cents worth posted. I sure wish I had more time to interact in these discussions. Just not enough hours in the day, these days!

  5. Thank you so much Cheryl.

    I was so surprised to see my little-known website given honorable mention. It was a welcome sight to see comments on it. Guess I’d better get busy again. I’ve a lot of thoughts circling in my head. 🙂

    Please note that my ID is hidden and I prefer to keep it that way.

    Oh, and thanks to Lin for the correction. I did fix it on the “apostles” post.

  6. I’d like to ramble here for a moment. ?

    It is so nice to see so many blogs where serious study of the Scriptures is approached with integrity. As I roam around various lists and discussion forums I see too much of decent well meaning brethren only thinking in terms of defending a favorite doctrine as taught by his denomination or defending a favorite doctrine that benefits them in some way. So few are willing to lay off the shackles of tradition and recheck the Scriptural foundations of what is taught.

    It is also interesting how many women will defend a doctrine that ultimately demeans and confines them. Sometimes, it reminds me of how an abused woman will stay in the marriage until either her children are threatened with violence or her life becomes endangered. There are other issues that keep them there regardless of the truth or fallacy of the belief.

  7. I believe you have hit on something. There is something else that keeps women in a relationship that confines them. I think it goes back to Genesis 3 when God said that the woman would desire the man. I know that the weakness of most women is that they desire to please the man in an excessive way so that they would rather be treated unfairly rather than risk his displeasure. I believe that this desire has become perverted by the fall.

    The other thing that I find very odd is that the women who object to the freedom of women to serve in the same way that men are allowed to serve, can be especially harsh against their own sisters. Someone suggested it is because they are jealous of anyone who has a freedom that they do not have. I really don’t know what gives, but I have seen a lot of anger out there that is even greater than what comes from complementarian men.

    I just am so grateful that my husband came to see the light at the same time I did. I had a friend whose husband refused to even talk to me because of my view on women and she had to go along with him. She couldn’t even discuss it with him because he had such a closed mind. In that case, she couldn’t dare to see a view other than the one that he espoused because then there would have been no living with him. It is just so sad that people have closed their minds to what they already have prejudged.

    Thanks Justa Berean – I appreciated the reasoning through this. I have had similar bewildering thoughts!

  8. “I think it goes back to Genesis 3 when God said that the woman would desire the man. I know that the weakness of most women is that they desire to please the man in an excessive way so that they would rather be treated unfairly rather than risk his displeasure. I believe that this desire has become perverted by the fall.”

    I agree. This is likely what is behind the strange behavior of abused women who stay in abusive marriages and often refuse to press charges after serious beatings.

    I could be wrong but I strongly suspect that women who push the ultra obedience of wives to husbands DO have an element of jealousy. They have had to hunker down into uncomfortable binding clothes that another fits them with. Many have done so most of their lives and have learned how to “turn the neck that holds the head”. They have given up their dreams and forsaken skills and spiritual gifts in order to have an appearance of godliness (that literally holds no power). There is an anger directed at women who to them have found a way around this. To step out of it is to sense the losses deeper and to acknowledge an error that may be huge to some.

    Truly, I feel deep regret for these women….. even when I’d like to bonk them with a dictionary. 🙂

  9. You have hit on another point that is huge. It is a major matter of pride to some to have fought hard against the freedom for women to use their gifts in the body of Christ and then see that they could have been wrong all along. There are some dear brothers and sisters in Christ who will leave the wrong and follow the truth in God’s word no matter what the personal cost to them. However others cannot admit that they could be wrong since it may have involved years of teaching against women and an admittance that their position is wrong. It takes courage for a leader to say that he had been wrong in his interpretation. It takes courage and humility. I have seen this humility in a few preachers who freely admit that they have believed and taught error in the past. My respect for them does not go down. Instead my respect goes way up because I know how hard it is on one’s ego to admit one has been in error. When the ego has been destroyed through humility, I believe that God has a faithful follower who will not be swayed by the embarrassment of having to admit that they have been wrong.

  10. “The other thing that I find very odd is that the women who object to the freedom of women to serve in the same way that men are allowed to serve, can be especially harsh against their own sisters. Someone suggested it is because they are jealous of anyone who has a freedom that they do not have. I really don’t know what gives, but I have seen a lot of anger out there that is even greater than what comes from complementarian men.”

    This has been my experience. It has been the women who have been the most vitriolic about this issue. I have a few thoughts on that point. Justa Berean said this:

    “Many have done so most of their lives and have learned how to “turn the neck that holds the head”.

    This is exactly what I have heard from pulpits for years. Men are the ‘head’, Women turn the ‘neck’. If you think about that…It is really a form of teaching deception and manipulation because the woman is taught indirectly that is where her ‘power’ resides. So, she learns to be clever and manipulative with her believing husband. This has literally been passed down generation to generation in many families. So these woman fill their time ‘working’ on the believing husband to get what she wants. It is very sad and it is sinful.

    On another note, many women who hold fast the to complimentarian view seem to me to be women who do not relish serious responsibility. This is a generalization, of course, but seems to be my personal experience.

    I disagree with Justa to a point…some of these women never had dreams or ambitions outside of a comfortable life with little responsiblity outside of children and home. That is ok. But there are plenty out there who are called to missions, etc. and called to be a part of the Great Commission.

    I am blessed that I grew up in an egalitarian home. But, I am a fish out of water. But, when I look back, I am also amazed at how deep the complimentarian view has permeated our churches.

    The biggest problem I have with this issue is that if I try to find an egalitarian Body for worship, most are teaching false doctrine in the essentials.

    Unfortuantly, It has become more of a ‘conservative’/’liberal’ political issue in the church. A way of trying to put society back together.

  11. I continue to discover refreshing thinking in the various blog trails on this site. I, too, was raised in an egalitarian household, and maintained that for many years as an adult. It has been difficult to find egal. churches that don’t, as Lin said, compromise on other issues-homosexuality usually being one, along with tendancies towards New Age inroads of all kinds. So, I began to attend churches like Calvary Chapel which have much that I like but still hold to the comp. view. I began to wonder if perhaps I was truly wrong about egal. theology. It was during this phase that I met and married a mild comp. I truly thought we were of one mind-both mild comps. Months into the marriage, I find that I cannot at all support comp thinking, yet now find myself very much in a comp atmosphere and church. I have not yet found a great egal. church in the area and realize split church attendance is not ideal for a married couple, anyway, though my husband, albeit very soberly, gave his blessings should I decide to go elsewhere.
    I struggle to have a vision for attending a comp church. It is also a challenge to a marriage to have different views. There are children from the former marriage which would see us each going off to separate churches, and that doesn’t seem good, either.
    Have any of you out there dealt with this type of challenge? How did you keep your hope and vision for fellowship alive in the midst of a constraining church view? I even find it difficult now to want to invite anyone to my church knowing that yes, they could be saved, but to what? To an oppressive view, in part, of what it means to be a Christian?
    While we are here, I will also put out some things I am still finding myself unable to adequately answer.
    1. Comps in my camp often bring up the fact that women are the weaker vessel (1 Peter 3:7) and equate that to women being intrinsically more easily deceived. I don’t see that the bible says that but what are some responsible answers to that? They also bring up the verses (Is. 19:16, Jer. 51:30, Nahum 3:14) that seem to use ‘women’ as an insultory description.
    2. Comps in my camp also bring up that husbands are to wash their wives with the word, thus implying that women are more defective than men, using Eph. 5:26. I think the verse is saying that Jesus does that for His bride, but husbands??? And only husbands?? What if a wife sees her husband could use a verse or two read to him?
    3. Validity for women being subject to/needing to obey/ be in authority to/ their husbands is tied in with verses that tell us to obey those who rule over you and remember those who are over you in the Lord (from He. 13:7, 17 and 1 Thess. 5:12-13). Again, from the comps in my camp. In other words, ‘Hey, men have to obey and submit, too!’ is thrown at me.
    4. Finally, and I know we touched on this on another blog trail on this link, I am confronted by the comps in my camp with the idea that Jesus was in submission to the Father, while on earth, and did not do his will but rather did the Father’s, and that this is used to support the ‘separate but equal roles’ theology they employ. That is, in like manner, women are not demeaned by submitting to their husbands and submitting their hopes, wills, skills, and abilities to their husbands (as my church believes).

    I welcome any light that is shed on any or all of the above. I know I am a latecomer to this blog trail so hope some of you discover this new entry and respond.

  12. Truthseeker,
    It certainly can be very difficult to have a “mixed” marriage. I think it would be helpful to have a support system to work through issues and problems. A good egalitarian discussion board is http://equalitycentral.com/forum/YaBB.pl I think this would be a great “meeting” place for egals and soft comps to support one another.

    Regarding #1 where women are described as the weaker vessel – in 1 Peter 3:7 women are said to be physically weaker but Peter attaches “honor” to them. God has made us for child-bearing and women’s muscles are made differently than men’s muscles so that typically (although not always) women are not as strong as men so that women are more vulnerable. However nowhere does scripture say that women are more easily deceived. In fact if we did a survey of cult leaders we would find that the majority are men. What makes people more susceptible to deception is not their gender but their knowledge/understanding of the truth. Correct doctrine keeps one safe from error.

    2. The bible does not say that husbands are to wash their wives with the water of the word. Although Jesus is a “husband” to the church, not everything that Jesus is to the church is applicable to husbands. Jesus is the spiritual Savior of the church but husbands are not that Savior. Jesus as God commands obedience but husbands are never told to command their wives to obey. Husbands are also never told to take responsibility to teach their wives. In the church we are all to have a goal of maturity. If a husband was to be a mediator between God and the woman and he was needed to teach her what God’s will is, then she would never be able to fulfill God’s design for her as a mature Christian. Just as Priscilla taught in the presence of her husband and another man, so the one who has the knowledge of scripture is able to use their gift for the common good.

    3. The husband is never told to rule over the wife and the wife is told to submit to the husband in the context of his sacrificing for her. It is not to be taken out of that context. When the disciples submitted to Jesus it was to receive from him. Remember when Jesus wanted to wash the disciples feet and Peter said no? Jesus did not take authority over Peter, nor did Jesus tell Peter to submit. Jesus served Peter and instructed him on the need for Jesus to serve Peter. It was then that Peter submitted to that service. Husbands too are not supposed to be little rulers sitting back while demanding their wives serve them. This would be an out-of-context application since the man is to called to serve her in an extremely sacrificial way. The focus should be on the man’s selfless service to his wife and if this is the focus then it would not be hard at all for the wife to submit to that. She would then be doing what is biblical – submitting to his service, not submitting to his rulership.

    4. Regarding the submission of Jesus, most people miss the submission of the Father for the benefit of Jesus. I won’t go into it right now as it will be on my DVD (should be released in Sept or Oct 2008) but I think there will be some revolutionary things brought out that most have not focused on.

    I think your questions are really good questions. Since this post is quite an old one, most people won’t see it as readily. I recommend you take these questions and post them on http://equalitycentral.com/forum/YaBB.pl This discussion board has been growing and the people there are loving, kind, respectful and interested in the gender issues in the church and the home.

    I hope that helps a little for now!

  13. Cheryl,

    Thank you-that is a huge help!!!! I have gone to the site you recommended and it looks like a breath of fresh air as well!

  14. Truthseeker,
    I knew you would like it! I would be there myself much more if I had the time. These days time is a premium as I work day and night to get this next DVD done. When I get another break I will be posting again on my own blog too 😉

Leave a Reply

This site uses Akismet to reduce spam. Learn how your comment data is processed.

%d bloggers like this: