Sunday, August 22, 2010

Debunking Christianity: The Bible Says Women Are Foolish and Flighty

John Loftus posted the following on his blog
Such tomfoolery should be ignored. Why on earth would enlightened people in our age take seriously the Bible if it is wrong about women? It's wrong about almost everything important.
Of late, Loftus has been posting a lot about feminism and why atheism is the only reasonable response in favor or Women's rights. I read the article that Loftus references called

Does The Bible Present Women as Foolish and Flighty?

I've got to admit that Loftus and the article writer would be right if the Bible really said that about women. This is the best example of "cherry-picking" I've ever seen. Here is a quote from the article:
The Bible definitely presents women as inferior to men, or as Peter terms it, "the weaker vessel" (1 Peter 3:7). The woman is thought to be more easily deceived (1 Tim. 2:14) and thus not worthy of the leadership role in the Church (1 Tim. 3:1-2). The woman was created "for" the man (1 Cor. 11:8-9) and she is not to usurp his authority (1 Tim. 2:12). She is to be subject to her husband  in everything
In the Old Testament, it is even worse. The woman is considered to be the property of her father or husband (Exod. 20:17; 21:7). She has no rights. She cannot divorce her husband. If she is raped and does not cry out loud enough, it is her fault (Deut. 22:24). The list goes on and on.(Eph. 5:24).
Women are not presented as inferior to men. Look at  1 Peter 3:7 in context.
 1Wives, in the same way be submissive to your husbands so that, if any of them do not believe the word, they may be won over without words by the behavior of their wives, 2when they see the purity and reverence of your lives. 3Your beauty should not come from outward adornment, such as braided hair and the wearing of gold jewelry and fine clothes. 4Instead, it should be that of your inner self, the unfading beauty of a gentle and quiet spirit, which is of great worth in God's sight. 5For this is the way the holy women of the past who put their hope in God used to make themselves beautiful. They were submissive to their own husbands, 6like Sarah, who obeyed Abraham and called him her master. You are her daughters if you do what is right and do not give way to fear.
 7Husbands, in the same way be considerate as you live with your wives, and treat them with respect as the weaker partner and as heirs with you of the gracious gift of life, so that nothing will hinder your prayers. - 1 Peter 3:1-7
The passage tells us Women should submit to their husbands not because men are smarter or better.  The Bible is only talking about roles and position not ontology. Peter writes to warn husbands not to take advantage of their wives because of their position. God honors women so far as to tell us men that if we don't honor and respect our wives, understanding that they share the gifts and deserve an equal share of everything, God will ignore our prayers!!! That is much different than the way Loftus is trying to spin this. Further we know that women is not less than men because we know that husbands belong to their wives as much as wives belong to their husband
2But since there is so much immorality, each man should have his own wife, and each woman her own husband. 3The husband should fulfill his marital duty to his wife, and likewise the wife to her husband. 4The wife's body does not belong to her alone but also to her husband. In the same way, the husband's body does not belong to him alone but also to his wife. 5Do not deprive each other except by mutual consent and for a time, so that you may devote yourselves to prayer. Then come together again so that Satan will not tempt you because of your lack of self-control. - 1st Corinthian 7:2-5
 The New Testament also clearly shows that there were female leaders and teachers in the first century church. This was changed, true enough, and only now really coming back as a rule. But the status of women as not being fit for being leaders and/or teachers was a church invention not a Biblical one. I wrote more about this in the following three articles:

An "Evil" of Christianity

Dr. Claude Mariottini - Professor of Old Testament: Phoebe: A Diakonos

Dr. Claude Mariottini - Professor of Old Testament: Biblical Feminism

So why does the Bible say that a wife should obey her Husband in everything? This instruction was written to the church with the idea in mind that her husband would love her like Christ loved the Church! She should not have to worry about abuse or not becoming all she should be because her husband would love her and make it his priority to help her! I mean read the whole passage in context!

I disagree that women were treated as property in the Old Testament. Women were afforded more rights and privileges than any partriarchial ancient society of what is now the Middel East. The laws served to protect women not subjugate or hurt them.The point about raping women is not a valid one, the Law does not say it's the woman's fault if she is raped but does not scream. The law assumes that she complicit if she does not try to get away. That may seem hard to swallow in the context of our culture today, but that was the Law. IT  does not validate the notion that women are less than man.
The New Testament has a few strong women in it. So doe the Old Testament. People usually trot out Deborah (Judges 4-5) as an example of a powerful female leader in the Old Testament. She also holds the distinction of being the only leader in Israel's history who was not only a political leader but a prophet simultaneously! But let's talk about someone else who doesn't get discussed too ofen: Abigail (1 Samuel 25). Abigail is honored above her husband whose very name "Nabal" means "Fool". Think about it. No one can really argue...and be stating that the Bible teaches us to be misogynistic and terrible to women. It's just not there. If you say it is, you are being dishonest...or stupid.
Debunking Christianity: The Bible Says Women Are Foolish and Flighty
Enhanced by Zemanta

No comments:

Post a Comment