Sunday, October 28, 2012

What is Domestic Abuse?

October is domestic violence awareness month, and domestic violence and abuse is not only rampant among professing Christians but getting worse. 
What is domestic abuse? Put simply, domestic abuse is WAR waged against members of one’s immediate family, most especially against spouses, with abusers using a wide array of tactics including psychological and sometimes physical warfare against their victims. Prejudice, blame-shifting, and fallen theology combine to make domestic abuse a difficult issue to resolve among Christians.

Domestic abuse and violence has always taken place among professing Christians, and seems to be getting worse, so much so that Google currently lists over 400,000 entries for the search term “Christian Domestic Violence Seminars.” Addressing the issue has become a popular cause within the Christian community. But all the seminars in the world will not change a thing with regards to domestic abuse and domestic violence until the doctrine of female subordination, which lies at the very heart of the issue, and is what perpetuates it, is dealt with. It is a doctrine of institutionalized discrimination that thrives on an unreasonable fear and hatred of women. It not only perpetuates abuse but also prevents Christians from responding compassionately, Biblically, and effectively to abuse victims.

The causes of emancipation for slaves and equal rights for women have fought common enemies in religion, law, public opinion, and the most implacable and powerful enemies of all in fear and prejudice.

The War Between the States won freedom from slavery for black men and women. But it was years before black men were permitted to exercise their right to vote. The Woman’s Suffrage Movement, which culminated in the 20th century, won the right to vote for all American women—white women that is. Even after laws were passed giving women the right to vote, fear and prejudice continued to dominate in withholding from black women the practice of this most basic right of citizenship.

Now, in the opening years of the 21st Century, for the first time in the history of the United States, the American people have broken all precedent and elected an African American to the presidency. The African American male, though still dealing with racial prejudice, appears to have finally broken free from a cruel caste system based on the color of his skin. Most American women, as well, seem to have largely broken free from a caste system based on gender—most American women that is, except evangelical Christian American women…of any color.

Is it any coincidence that in this historical, precedent breaking era, yet another civil war is very much in progress, not between the states, nor even between the races, but within the Christian Church between the sexes? And what is at stake is not merely a set of theological differences between denominations. Simple doctrinal difficulties are not the culprits in this war; indeed, denominations that have yet to find common ground in many theological areas are lending support to one another in a war which transcends logic and theology. In this war the enemy is not men or women but rather an implacable, prejudice, which has nestled for far too long, and far too comfortably, within the hearts of far too many Christian men and women.

It is a prejudice that defines masculinity and femininity using subjective and unfair stereotypes, forcing men and women into molds God never fashioned for them, obliterating the individuality of all in the process. Only the redeeming love of our Savior can liberate men and women to relate to one another on equal terms without fear or prejudice. The ground is level at the cross. Jesus said we would know the truth and the truth would set us FREE.

Woman this is WAR is available at any bookstore or online book seller. Or visit the following link for more information:

Saturday, February 18, 2012

Submission the Final Arbiter

   It is an unarguable fact that humans need and want boundaries, so it should come as no surprise that as Biblical Christianity declines [being replaced by a predominantly soft-on-doctrine-don’t-be-judgmental approach], the need for boundaries and structure within the Christian community reveals itself.
   Nowhere, is this more evident than in the fact of Evangelical Christians turning in droves to hierarchal priest-craft and more rigid than ever gender-role restrictions in order to provide boundaries and structure in an otherwise anything-goes-religious-free-for-all attitude that is taking root in the Christian psyche.
   The Written word of God, the Bible, no longer seems to be the final arbiter as to whether or not behavior is “Christian” or not, and protestant Christians, who previously looked only to Jesus as Mediator between themselves and their God, seem more willing than ever to transfer the mediatorship from Jesus to pastors, who claim it is their responsibility to answer [to God] for their congregants come judgment day.
   How is it, that Pastors have become self-appointed mediators between God and their congregations? And how is it, that husbands have been appointed mediators between their wives and God? And how is it, that how we submit to this man-made hierarchy, is said to determine the extent to which we can say it is well with our souls?
   Submission, therefore, becomes the final arbiter of whether or not a person is truly Christian or not.
   How convenient for hierarchalists, as this type of Christianity leaves little use for the Lordship of Christ, the guidance of the Holy Spirit, or the assurance of the Written Word of God.

Woman this is WAR! Gender Slavery and the Evangelical Caste System examines Bible commentary and translation practices which have historically been androcentric (male centered) and even misogynistic (anti-woman). These have adversely effected understanding of the scriptures, relations between women and men, the happiness of men and women, and, in general, has hindered the work of the gospel, by forbidding women to preach, pastor, or serve as elders or deacons. The book chronicles the early history of the women's rights movements, as well as the role of church leadership in aggressively suppressing both women's rights and the historical record of Christian initiatives within the movements. Through the complementarian movement, many of the same arguments used to support the institution of slavery, are still used today in suppressing the rights of Christian women. This book documents identical arguments used by Christian leaders against both movements and is an unparalleled resource for all who desire an in-depth study of gender equality from a Christian perspective. The history of women’s rights is traced back [much further than usual] to the very first feminists…who were Christians—godly women, who brought the issue of women's rights to the forefront as they struggled to alleviate the suffering of others, and found they were hindered in doing so for no other reason than the fact of their sex. This work, provides valuable historical insight into Christian initiatives in the movements for women’s rights, that are rarely included in Christian literature. Visit this link for more information or to buy the book:  Woman this is WAR! Gender Slavery and the Evangelical Caste System