Last weekend, an article appeared in a Sydney newspaper detailing proposed new vows in the Anglican diocese of Sydney, whereby women would pledge to “love and submit” to their husband. It caused quite a furore. The vows are defended today by Anglican Archbishop of Sydney Peter Jensen. But many see them as sexist and archaic. A visiting Anglican Minister from Britain, the Rev’d Barbara Steele-Perkins, was not impressed when she saw the story, and has penned this column exclusively for The Punch

Last weekend, three separate people in Sydney showed me the article about the proposed new marriage vows. “What do YOU think?” they all asked.

What's wrong with just loving and honoring. Photo: Herald Sun

Perhaps I should first explain why they were at all interested! I’m in Australia visiting my daughter and her family; I am an English woman, a one-time clergy wife, now an ordained Anglican minister myself. I have two part-time ‘jobs’: I’m a parish priest in a typically English village and a theological educator – that is, I help prepare men and women who are called to the Anglican ministry – both ordained and lay.

No wonder I am thought to have an opinion! And yes, I do.

First, about the word ‘submission’. We get rather het up in the 21st century, more by its misuse than its proper use. It is even abused, because we understand it to mean something negative and life-denying, but perhaps if we understood its proper use and the context, it will help.

The writer of the biblical letter from which it is quoted (to the Christians of Ephesus) addressed a cultural setting based on a philosophy where the individual was all. To be told that they should ALL ‘submit to one another out of reverence for Christ’ was revolutionary and different: the Christian life is not individualistic; it is lived in community, in relationship with God and with others.

It is a generous word, a giving word, an every-relationship word. In my church community for example, I gladly submit to someone who has a gift that I don’t, as they gladly submit to mine. We submit equally to each other.

The letter continues to explore something of what that meant for that culture at that time. Women in Ephesus for example were uneducated, whereas in Rome (see another letter in the Bible) the situation was quite different, and Paul specifically mentions women ministers there.

In our day and culture we need to work out what it means in detail for us. If you will forgive a little theology, every human being is in the image of God, who is, in God’s very being, three persons in perfect and equal submission to each other.

‘Subordination’, however, is an entirely different matter and entirely out of place; nowhere (unless it is being misinterpreted) does the Bible suggest that men and women are anything but equal in the sight of God and each other.

So my main question about the article, especially after reading Archbishop Jensen’s response, is: in a culture where women and men are equal (in Australia and England for example) why is there a perceived need for bride and groom to say different things in their vows?

The Rev’d Barbara Steele-Perkins

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    • Jaz says:

      01:06pm | 29/08/12

      I don’t know what Bible you have been reading but it is pretty clear in the one I was brought up on that women were told to be subordinate to men.

      Genesis 3:16
      Unto the woman he said, I will greatly multiply thy sorrow and thy conception; in sorrow thou shalt bring forth children; and thy desire shall be to thy husband, and he shall rule over thee.

      1 Corinthians 11:3
      But I would have you know, that the head of every man is Christ; and the head of the woman is the man; and the head of Christ is God.

      1 Corinthians 14:34-36
      Let your women keep silence in the churches: for it is not permitted unto them to speak; but they are commanded to be under obedience as also saith the law. And if they will learn any thing, let them ask their husbands at home: for it is a shame for women to speak in the church.

      Ephesians 5:22-24
      Wives, submit yourselves unto your own husbands, as unto the Lord. For the husband is the head of the wife, even as Christ is the head of the church: and he is the saviour of the body. Therefore as the church is subject unto Christ, so let the wives be to their own husbands in every thing.

      Colossians 3:18
      Wives, submit yourselves unto your own husbands, as it is fit in the Lord.

      1 Timothy 2:11-15
      Let the woman learn in silence with all subjection. But I suffer not a woman to teach, nor to usurp authority over the man, but to be in silence. For Adam was first formed, then Eve. And Adam was not deceived, but the woman being deceived was in the transgression. Notwithstanding she shall be saved in childbearing.

      1 Peter 3:1
      Likewise, ye wives, be in subjection to your own husbands.

      you cant say “nowhere (unless it is being misinterpreted) does the Bible suggest that men and women are anything but equal in the sight of God and each other.” and have really read the Bible. respectfully I think it is you who are misinterpreting your book

    • Black Dynamite says:

      01:51pm | 29/08/12

      You left out Luke 2:24

      Ye, and god said that on the nooneth hour thy womens shall maketh thine sammiches.

      BD

    • Little Joe says:

      02:39pm | 29/08/12

      Hi Jaz,

      The context of submission is often overstated and incorrectly used by many, but you forgot to mention the parts in the bible that refer to the responsibilities of husbands for their wives. I am not going to waffle just extend Ephesians 5 ..... a husband love his wife as they love themselves, must nourish and cherish their wife, and be willing to lay down their life for their wife.

    • egg says:

      02:53pm | 29/08/12

      @Jaz, please stop pointing out the inconsistencies, misrepresentation and lies of the church! How on earth are they meant to recruit new members if they’re forced to tell the truth about their ridiculous belief system? Geez, some people just don’t get it…

    • James says:

      03:14pm | 29/08/12

      Jaz with all due respect, I would say that Barbara’s statement stands.

      The gist of the new testament versus about wives submitting to your husbands has a larger context which you have neglected to include. For example:

      Ephesians 5, 22-33
      22 Wives, submit yourselves to your own husbands as you do to the Lord. 23 For the husband is the head of the wife as Christ is the head of the church, his body, of which he is the Savior. 24 Now as the church submits to Christ, so also wives should submit to their husbands in everything.

      25 Husbands, love your wives, just as Christ loved the church and gave himself up for her 26 to make her holy, cleansing[a] her by the washing with water through the word, 27 and to present her to himself as a radiant church, without stain or wrinkle or any other blemish, but holy and blameless. 28 In this same way, husbands ought to love their wives as their own bodies. He who loves his wife loves himself. 29 After all, no one ever hated their own body, but they feed and care for their body, just as Christ does the church— 30 for we are members of his body. 31 “For this reason a man will leave his father and mother and be united to his wife, and the two will become one flesh.” 32 This is a profound mystery—but I am talking about Christ and the church. 33 However, each one of you also must love his wife as he loves himself, and the wife must respect her husband.

      Now you have correctly quoted the first part of this passage but the the second part is just as important if not more so. It basically says husbands love your wives like Christ loved the church. Now this is important because Christ loved the church so much that he DIED for it. So the passage in fact says for husbands to love their wives to the point where they would give up their lives for them (can you see how living like this would be simply incompatible with having misogynistic views?).

      In the historical context this point was extremely profound for in that day women were subject to men and the teaching was emphasising an equality above and beyond what had ever been taught previously. In the modern day this passage is just as important because it points to equality and love in the husband-wife relationship that is akin to the relationship between Christ and the church.

      As a Christian, I say this with absolute conviction: I do not believe in a God that teaches men are better than woman and that woman ought to submit and be ruled by their husbands. I believe in a God who treats every individual on equal terms and calls us to do the same.

    • Troy Flynn says:

      03:38pm | 29/08/12

      Thanks Jaz, I knew there was a reason I rejected religion at 10 years of age. The above list of examples which suggest that women are supposed to be second class citizens in this religion would be a significant part of it.
      It’s a shame too, as I have an Aunt in the UK who I think is now an anglican minister (you may even know her Barbara) but I’m getting sick of all the little biblical passages she posts on FB. I haven’t de-friended her for it as I normally would, she is still family afterall but I’ve stopped paying attention.

    • Jaz says:

      03:42pm | 29/08/12

      @ James
      I don’t Think your point stands. It is clear that the bible commands husbands to love their wives. However you can still love your wife and believe that you are superior. I love my dog but I don’t believe he is my equal. the two things are not the same. Every violent abusive husband says he loves his wife and he probably dose in his own sick way. It seems the bible thinks women are poor muddle headed creatures who need a strong man to look after them, think for them and make the decisions for them, lest the poor things do something outrageous like speak in church and embarrass everyone.

    • egg says:

      03:50pm | 29/08/12

      @James,therefore women are required to respect and submit to men, and still refers to husbands as “the head of the wife”.

      The husband is required to love the wife.

      This is not equality.

    • Tubesteak says:

      03:51pm | 29/08/12

      Yea, and those sammiches shall haveth bacon and mayonnaise and beereth shall be served in talleth frosty glasses whilst the man sitteth in chair in silence to contemplateth the Lordeth

    • andre says:

      03:57pm | 29/08/12

      You just a biased fanatic Jaz and as such have no chance of understanding teh Bible.

      This :
      “Unto the woman he said, I will greatly multiply thy sorrow and thy conception; in sorrow thou shalt bring forth children; and thy desire shall be to thy husband, and he shall rule over thee”.

      is result of the Fall not God recommendations.

      Man and a woman are the same creature equal and one in marriage.

    • Drama Queen says:

      04:36pm | 29/08/12

      James “23 For the husband is the head of the wife as Christ is the head of the church, his body, of which he is the Savior. “

      “In the modern day this passage is just as important because it points to equality and love in the husband-wife relationship that is akin to the relationship between Christ and the church.”

      How does it do this James when the Bible states the husband is the head of the house.

    • Servaas says:

      06:32pm | 29/08/12

      If you read the Bible as a complete work (as opposed to lone standing verses - which is only there for easier referencing) and understand the culture it was written in and the principle the writer aimed to bring across, the message is clear all men (humans) are equal before god as individuals and made in his image. Within various structures within a community however there ae positions (sometimes women are ranked higher than men other times not). Further, the commend to submit to one’s husband was a command to women, not to men to enforce on their wife and goes together with ‘love your wife as Christ loved the church’ ie. lay yourself down for her sake, seek her best. It is about two people serving one another with a common goal of building a healthy family structure among others. This wilfull misinterpretation and attempt to make something good and practical look evil is either due to being uninformed or otherwise childish ignorance.

    • James says:

      07:11pm | 29/08/12

      @Jaz, thanks for your reply, however, I don’t think you’re understanding the extent to which this love goes that is being written about. Sure you love your dog but would you die for it? Probably not. That’s what the passage is writing about - a love so great for your wife that you would die for her.

      I agree plenty of abusive husbands might say they love their wife but do they love their wife as much as Jesus loves the Church? Of course not, because if they did then they would not be treating their wives in such a manner.

      Regarding your final point I disagree because many of the themes across the New Testament go against those prevalent views at the time. Jesus frequently used the gender imbalances in the culture of the time to demonstrate his teachings and love.

      See this for a bit more eloquent explanation of what I’m trying to get at: https://publicchristianity.org/library/jesus-and-women#.UD3bRdYgck0

    • fml says:

      01:20pm | 29/08/12

      First Gays, now women. The patriarchal church strikes again. It seems the slippery slope argument used against gay marriage could easily be used against the church.

    • Tubesteak says:

      01:25pm | 29/08/12

      I think Peter Jensen has already answered this question in the SMH article you refer.

      Apparently, we’re same, but different. Or men submit to God but women submit to men. Something along those lines.

    • John says:

      01:29pm | 29/08/12

      “in a culture where women and men are equal (in Australia and England for example) why is there a perceived need for bride and groom to say different things in their vows?”

      Because the people who run the Anglican Church in Sydney don’t accept that men and women are equal.

      Try getting Archbishop Jensen to accept that you are a legitimate Anglican priest.  There’s as much chance of that as there is of him streaking down George Street.

    • Shane* says:

      01:31pm | 29/08/12

      Barbara, my understanding is that the Church teaches that a marriage is similar/representative of the bond between Christ and the Church. The man is asked to love and give himself up for his wife as Christ loves the Church (since Christ loved and gave himself up for others). The woman is asked to love and submit to the husband as the Church loves and submits to Christ. That’s why the wording is different.

      That is my understanding. Perhaps I am wrong. But if I am correct then I don’t see why this is a major issue. Both parties are asked to give of themselves for the sake of the other.

      Where I find myself disagreeing with you most is your assertion that men and women are equal. We’re not. Nor should we be. If we were physiologically or psychologically identical that would make the brilliant and beautiful complementary relationship between a man and a woman totally impossible. Our wonderful differences are what make it work. Let’s stop kidding ourselves. Men and women are entitled to equal opportunities. That’s not the same as being equal.

    • Sancho says:

      03:04pm | 29/08/12

      You’re saying that men and women aren’t the same, but arriving at the conclusion that they aren’t equal.

      It’s an interesting mental trick, but one that fewer and fewer people are willing to perform.

    • Shane* says:

      03:26pm | 29/08/12

      @Sancho, I don’t understand your point.

      Men and women aren’t the same. We’re not equal. How is this a mental trick?

      Men and women are asked to say (effectively) the same thing in two different ways because a Christian marriage is designed to represent Christ’s relationship with the Church.

    • iMitchy says:

      04:02pm | 29/08/12

      @Shane*,

      A ton of bricks and a ton of feathers. Equal mate.

      You cannot compare the strengths and weaknesses of a man and a woman and find that one’s value outweighs the other. The intention has always been to join together to create a complimentary single entity in marriage.

    • Shane* says:

      04:18pm | 29/08/12

      Am I on crazy pills? I don’t understand what Sancho and iMitchy are trying to say…

    • Troy Flynn says:

      04:23pm | 29/08/12

      Unless humans have suddenly learnt symbiogenesis , you’re not going to get a single entity after marriage. Complimentary or otherwise.

    • Drama Queen says:

      04:48pm | 29/08/12

      I don’t think you understand the concept of equality Shane*. Just because the genders are different does not mean inequality. Inequality assumes one being above the other. The differences compliment each other but do not lead to inequality, or one being better than the other.

      The Church is not asking for the same thing from the genders. The male is asked to submit to the sky fairy. The female is asked to submit to her husband - that takes the equality out of marriage. It puts power over the wife in the hands of the husband.

      If this doesn’t bother you, ask yourself if you would like to submit to someone you’re in an intimate relationship with. To submit to their will and for you to have no power within the relationship.

    • BossMAN says:

      05:10pm | 29/08/12

      You guys are right, Whenever Im walking down the street all I see are submissive housewives obediently and quietly following their husbands.

    • iMitchy says:

      05:19pm | 29/08/12

      Okay Shane*,

      Try this dice analogy: Each side of a die has a unique value but in every case, the opposing sides add to seven.

      So whilst each sum is made up of completely different values, the result is always equal. Difference does not mean inequality.

      Some people find it so hard to understand that the differences between men and women does not lead to inequality. Think about it, what if I compared a man to another man? They have the same income, social status, beliefs etc. but they are different people with different lives. Are they not equal? Now substitute one of the men for a woman. Different people, different lives - still equal.

      If you disagree with any of that then you are placing one person above another in some sort of human heirarchy. If you don’t think that there is really a heirarchy, then you think that all people are equal, different though they may be.

    • Ando says:

      05:24pm | 29/08/12

      iMitchy,
      I agree. Where you may enter tricky territory is listing what those strengths and weaknesses might be. There would be very few that wouldnt offend someone waiting to pounce. Would be an interesting task.

    • Rhino says:

      01:34pm | 29/08/12

      I for one welcome the Jesus, our cosmic telephathic self parenting jewish zombie overlord as my protector and I appreciate and do receive the guidance of Archbishop Pell, whoops, I am sorry, it is Jensen, as my acolyte in guiding me through the trials and tribulations of marriage. In that vein (and utlimately vain attempt) I have asked my wife to submit to me so we could be submitted via my proxy to our zombie overlard (yes, I spelled it lard).

      She looked at my like I was an idiot and told me to grow the **** up and take the rubbish out and we lived happily ever after.

    • Whatever says:

      04:34pm | 29/08/12

      You courageous atheist you. taking pot shots at christians. That takes real balls. Would you be so brave as to not sit behind a pseudonym mocking mohommad, or do you only pick on religious groups that don’t have a habit of beheading those who are offensive towards their religion?

      You’ve got every right to disagree with any god, or all gods, but it would be nice if atheists were just as offensive towards other religious groups.

    • KRS1 says:

      01:43pm | 29/08/12

      Jaz I see where you are coming from… however all these instructions are directed to Believers, i.e. those who believe in the saving work of Christ Jesus by His death and resurrection. They are a model for living as a group of Believers (i.e. the Church).

      They (guidliens you have quoted above) are not to be pushed onto NON-believers as a group of laws or rules.

      This is exactly what Paul is referring to in 1 Corinthians 5:9-11. http://www.biblegateway.com/passage/?search=1+Corinthians+5&version=NIV

      Once you have belief, THEN you should find out how to live as a Believer. Not before.

    • Matt says:

      03:45pm | 29/08/12

      So if you’re a non-believer, don’t get married in an Anglican church then.

    • MyJoy says:

      04:42pm | 29/08/12

      Matt
      Surely it is hypocritical for any non-believer to be married in any church building or denomination?????

    • Sad Sad Reality says:

      02:15pm | 29/08/12

      Yeah because rampant female infidelity, over 50% of marriages failing and 75% of divorces instigated by women all point to how closely women abide by the vows they make on their wedding day. Please.

    • Cynicised says:

      03:26pm | 29/08/12

      Which is of course, only the woman’s fault. Men play no part in the divorce statistics do they? All these women just up and play to play the hypergamy game for no apparent reason whatsoever, don’t they SSD?  Please! Enough of your bullshit. Hypergamy as the reason for failed relationships is MRE crap, as well as the words to submit are in modern vows.

      I await my scolding, oh Master.
      Pfft!

    • Shannon says:

      03:35pm | 29/08/12

      rampant? really? oh honey.

      I didnt say the tradtitional vows at my wedding, we wrote our own. I will never obey to surrender to anyone.

      But I love my husband with all my heart and will do anything for him.

    • M says:

      04:05pm | 29/08/12

      M likes your comment

    • Sad Sad Reality says:

      04:24pm | 29/08/12

      @Cynicised
      My point wasn’t that it’s only the woman’s fault. My point was it is mostly the woman’s fault. As in most women are so self-absorbed they think the children their husband helped create and raise and his future income belong exclusively to them. And they throw a fit when anyone suggests otherwise. Add in the fact that the current Eat Pray Love, I deserve it, me, me, me generation of women are one Oprah rerun away from ringing a divorce lawyer and booking a flight to Barbados and the current divorce rate starts to make a whole lot of sense. The only mistake men make is saying I do.

      @Shannon
      Women cheat way more than men. You guys are just better at lying about it. I’ve had so many married coworkers throw themselves at me after a few drinks, I could start my own MILF porn site. A lot of women marry for security and seek sex outside the marriage so hubby can help them raise their illegitimate spawn. That’s why there are so many scumbags around. Married women replicate them on the sly. 

      “But I love my husband with all my heart and will do anything for him.”

      Except

      “surrender”

      He must be so happy to have an empowered woman battle him at every turn to prove her independence. Wouldn’t be irritating at all.

    • SydneyGirl says:

      04:54pm | 29/08/12

      “women are so self-absorbed they think the children their husband helped create and raise and his future income belong exclusively to them.”

      That’s just evolution at work - its basically every woman’s duty to maximise the resources available to her spawn. Deal with it.

      “A lot of women marry for security and seek sex outside the marriage”

      Basically what men - and French women - have been doing forever. Healthy marriage etc.

      “so hubby can help them raise their illegitimate spawn.”

      If men were raising children not their own society would have collapsed by now.  Bar a few cases women offer men the security that the children are of the man concerned and that’s pretty much the cornerstone of any society.

      All the above are sad sad reality.

    • Drama Queen says:

      04:58pm | 29/08/12

      Girls, Sad Sad Reality really is a delusional sad, sad individual. Failed marriage. Can’t get his own way. Chip on the shoulder. The only way he can get back at women is to post his opinions on a blog. There’s studies being done on his type of lonely, sad personality and blogging - maybe he should read some of them.

    • blogger says:

      05:06pm | 29/08/12

      SSR - why is it that real men can make it a marriage work and keep a woman but you couldn’t and all you’ve got is a blog to dribble on about your pathetic, miserable life.

    • Zoe says:

      05:11pm | 29/08/12

      SSR, just put your shovel away and stop digging

    • Sad Sad Reality says:

      06:13pm | 29/08/12

      @blogger.
      Real men don’t get married. They take full advantage of the sexual free for all feminism hath wrought.

      @Zoe.
      Brilliantly conceived original comment. You’re a real free thinker. Wouldn’t want to upset someone as insightful as you.

    • M says:

      06:14pm | 29/08/12

      It’s amazing how fast women recoil from uncomfortable truths. At least sydneygirl is honest.

    • Shannon says:

      06:21pm | 29/08/12

      SSR, my husband and I are equals in our marriage, why should I surrender to him? I didn’t in the beginning if our relationship, why should I now?

      You must be a wonderful man to have women throw themselves at you! Congrats.

      And if more women cheat, who do they cheat with?  Men.

      You really know how to spin stories sir, you should write a book.

    • Ian1 says:

      02:59pm | 29/08/12

      I can’t even find a pair of twins I’d describe as equal.

    • CJ says:

      03:38pm | 29/08/12

      The bigger issue here is that God is literally gonna torture the majority of humanity for eternity - torture them forever - because they don’t believe in him. He hates that ...

    • iMitchy says:

      04:08pm | 29/08/12

      But if you do believe in him, then someone else’s God will f*%k you up.

      Another win for Religion. And proof than not one is valid. Well, maybe ONE - roulette anyone?

    • Troy Flynn says:

      04:15pm | 29/08/12

      Funny, I thought god rendered us to Satan for the torture. Sort of like how the US rendered prisoners to other countries for torture as “The U.S. doesn’t torture”. Surely god lives/exists by the same standard?

    • Scotchfinger says:

      04:42pm | 29/08/12

      you guys certainly have a deep and subtle grasp of christian theology. A bunch of budding St Thomas Aquinas’s here. If this is atheism in all its glory, I wish Darwin had been a book keeper.

    • jim says:

      03:43pm | 29/08/12

      Funny that everyone equates Submission to Slavery when it is not.

      Thats just as stupid as equating submitting an assignment to a teacher as slavery… is it? Or submitting a Resume to a potential employer.

      I agree that submission is only subject to Christian households. It works both ways.

      The husband submits to God, and the wife submits to the husband. He leads the example of what God expects. Do not lie, do not steal, do not commit adultery, worship the Lord God…etc. You commit sin, you deal with God first.

      And if the wife feels pressure from the Husband, she’ll pray to God and read the scriptures on how a Husband is expected to live out as a loving and caring person, willing to lose his life to protect his wife and children.

      There are examples of that of Christians in Indonesia. Husbands sacrificing their lives so their wives and children can escape the muslim populace.

      If you’re an atheist and you don’t follow those rules. I won’t judge. Thats your problem. I feel bad about your partner though, I cannot live in an environment where there is distrust and dueling authority.

    • iMitchy says:

      04:19pm | 29/08/12

      I find it funny that your last word was “authority” given the examples you provided.

      What gives a husband “authority” over his wife?

      I’m a married man by the way, got married in an Anglican church and, much to my dismay, my kids are baptised Anglican as is my wife. I am still pure, no water on my face thank you very much. I don’t want the priveleges that my kids are now privy to by being baptised and supported my wife’s wish to have them baptised purely so that they could access these priveleges. The Christian community can be quite exclusive.

    • Scotchfinger says:

      03:45pm | 29/08/12

      Tory writes: ‘To be told that they should ALL ‘submit to one another out of reverence for Christ’ was revolutionary and different: the Christian life is not individualistic; it is lived in community, in relationship with God and with others.’

      Not nit-picking, but in fact what was revolutionary in the gospels was the exhortation that father should turn against son, that all were equal before God, and that the life we lived was nothing apart from preparation for the final judgement. In fact, the laws of the Israelites were already humanistic. peopl

    • Scotchfinger says:

      04:09pm | 29/08/12

      oops, I mean Barbara.

    • Stephen says:

      04:00pm | 29/08/12

      Yet another example of the utter absurdity of religion.

    • No surprises here says:

      04:05pm | 29/08/12

      coming from a woman minister, it’s not surprising that she has a problem with what the bible says on gender roles. If you can reinterpret the bible such that you can ordain women, you’re on the slippery slope to theological liberalism as you can make the bible say anything you want to. authorial intent means nothing anymore.
      Coming from a member of a denomination, which having ordained women, now ordains and blesses gay ministers, the slippery slope argument isn’t a straw man.

    • Troy Flynn says:

      04:41pm | 29/08/12

      People have been making up what they want from this book for centuries. My most recent favourite was learning about how belief in “The Assumption” was arrived at.by the pope of the time locking himself away and just thinking, thinking about it and came to the conclusuion it just had to be. Now it’s doctrine.

    • Lady Gaga says:

      04:31pm | 29/08/12

      What a pity ‘submit’ has such bad press,  In action, it can mean,  loving, gracious, generous, self sacrificing, gentle, affirming.  Wouldn’t life be gorgeous if we all had life partners like that!  xxoo

    • AndyM says:

      04:48pm | 29/08/12

      Check out the council on biblical manhood and womanhood if you want to find resources and material laying out what that can look like. Servant leadership, and submission that doesn’t look like being a doormat.

    • M says:

      04:46pm | 29/08/12

      Man will never truly be free until the last priest is strangled with the entrails of the last king.

    • Drama Queen says:

      05:10pm | 29/08/12

      Didn’t I see this on TheAge website this morning - and it was attributed to its correct author.

    • M says:

      06:17pm | 29/08/12

      Does it not ring true if the author isn’t mentioned?

    • andre says:

      04:58pm | 29/08/12

      Paul wrote this :
      ” Let the woman learn in silence with all subjection. But I suffer not a woman to teach, nor to usurp authority over the man, but to be in silence. For Adam was first formed, then Eve. And Adam was not deceived, but the woman being deceived was in the transgression. Notwithstanding she shall be saved in childbearing”

      and similar contradicting teaching of gnostic.  Gnostics teach that to reach a state of godhood one has o acquire certain knowledge and it was Eve who was first taught that knowledge by the serpent or the light bearer - Luciferos,  who initially convey this idea to Adam and Eve. (“you will ba like gods”)
      In witchcraft for instance, a woman stands higher as a teacher than a man.

    • Scotchfinger says:

      05:39pm | 29/08/12

      Think of the bible like a textbook of physics. Do you read the chapter on Thermodynamics and call yourself a physicist? Similarly, the Christian reads the book in its entirety, also taking in the nuances of meaning and its original context, and also thinking for himself. Atheists love to cherry pick anachronisms such as sacrifice, to jeer at the whole religion thing. This is like me jeering at the field of Science, because physics used to teach that the speed of light is a constant. I would be a fool to do so, wouldn’t I?

    • andre says:

      06:59pm | 29/08/12

      yeah scotchfinger ,  atheist love to “cherry pick” demonstrating at the same time that they have no idea what era they picking about especially when thinking themselves to be a product of mindless explosion of nothing long, long tome ago .smile Sorry mate read more about thermodynamics and understand the concept of entropy..

    • Muggles says:

      07:44pm | 29/08/12

      @scotchfinger

      “Similarly, the Christian reads the book in its entirety,”

      Virtually all modern day Christians in Australia cherry pick what they want from the bible, and disregard those bits that are inconvenient.

      You may well have read the bible in its entirely, but you certainly do not follow all of its precepts and guidance. (And how could you; much of it is contradictory, flat-out murderous, and otherwise grossly anti-social.)

      Stoned anyone for their sexual dalliances of late have you?

      Or murdered someone because they’re not a virgin on their wedding night?

      Why not?  Are you so wise that you can detect the “nuances” in the “word of god”, such that you don’t have to obey his holy commandments?

      “This is like me jeering at the field of Science, because physics used to teach that the speed of light is a constant.”

      What are you talking about? “Physics” didn’t used to “teach anything”.  Physics is not the same thing as physicists.

      And please don’t bother bringing up scientific concepts in an argument that is primarily about supernatural belief systems.

    • MyJoy says:

      05:06pm | 29/08/12

      If people would get to “know” the Author of the Bible instead of trying to understand it with the carnal mind they would know that the Lord did not make man and woman to be unequal in any degree.  If one looks at Jesus He never treated women anything other than as equals, he rebuked his disciples when they tried to do otherwise. 

      Sometimes I wonder if chuchmen/women who push this false perception, really know the Lord with heart knowledge or just puny head knowledge.  If they do not know Him they too will not understand His Book.  Man does not make Christians God does.  Some are there to look good, not serve Him or His people. 

      For the unbelievers, it is not directed at you, you choose to reject your Maker, your choice. Go back to your comic books and stop trying to understand something that is way over your head.

    • Muggles says:

      07:50pm | 29/08/12

      “If people would get to “know” the Author of the Bible “

      Which author?  The inspiration, or the actual guys who wrote the bits and pieces of it, and edited it, and revised it, over thousands of years?

      Assuming you’re speaking of your particular brand of Jehova, I think the bible spells it out pretty clearly:

      He’s a monster who displays unbelievable pettiness and cruelty.  He’s a mass murderer who thinks nothing of killing newborn children because of their deeds of their parents, or simply for their heritage. He is responsible for death and pain beyond imagining, and his powers are vast and terrible to behold.

      And that’s just according to the “official” sources.  That’s according, supposedly, to HIM.

      MyJoy, if this is the kind of guy you want to “know”, I feel deeply sorry for you.  If you’re going to believe in a supernatural entity, couldn’t you at least have picked one who wasn’t insanely cruel, capricious and monstrous?

      (Or is that what you want in your god?)

    • Daz says:

      05:12pm | 29/08/12

      It’s all very simple really. If you take a big picture approach. My understanding of the bible is that God is not interested in bodies, either male or female. It’s been a while since I’ve read it but I seem to remember a lot of talk about souls and saving them or losing them.

      So the question is, do souls have a gender? If there is a heaven and if we get there, will there be male and female toilets? Somehow I doubt it.

      So the left-brained can nit pick about words and interpretations and roles all they like. I don’t think God could give a rats.

    • stephen says:

      06:57pm | 29/08/12

      The ‘submission’ in this case was of a prelapsarian age when the social rule was in harmony, it was compassionate, and religion was universal, so then your meaning of that word is correct because it was, when it was coined, meant as a longing for a past time as one in which all participants in a sinless world should be rejoiced.
      And, also, as Milton would have concurred with, you cannot know paradise, or even want it, if you are stuck in a desolate place eg. an unsinful world.

    • OchreBunyip says:

      07:01pm | 29/08/12

      While the bride’s vows are appalling take a look at the white knight bs the groom has to promise as well. Both people get poorly treated by this idea.

 

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