March 28, 2010

Is the Bible Really Oppressive to Women?

Lately I have heard more and more women, in particular feminists, say that the Bible was written by men for men to subjugate women and others. Feminism has come into conflict increasingly with Chirstianity due to perceptions of the church & due to past history and the perception that religion(s) treats women as second-class citizens...differentiation needs to be made to correctly view a picture that appears to have been knocked askew.

1. Jesus' commendation of the single state as a legitimate calling for those whom it was given stands in stark contrast to the traditional 1st century Palestinian views of a woman's human duty to marry and procreate. As a result women who chose to follow Jesus took on a role other than mother or wife.

2. Jesus treated women as human subjects rather than possessions. Jesus is seen engaging with women throughout His ministry, affirming them. Often they were women who were outcasts by contemporary Jewish society (i.e. prostitutes).

3. Jesus refused to scapegoat women in sexual matters. The patriarchal assumption that men are corrupted by fallen women is absent from Jesus' attitude, teaching. John 4 being a celebrated instance of this.

4. The traditional view that a woman was "unclean" during menstration was dismissed by Jesus, who made it clear that it is only moral impurity that defiles a person (Mark 7:1-23). Women were not to be excluded from worship becasue ot this once traditional reasoning.

5. Women were integral to the group of people that surrounded Jesus, often to the religious leaders dismay (Pharisees). Not only did women witness the crucifixion, they were the first to witness the risen Christ. The only Easter event explicitly accounted in detail in all four Gospels is the visit of the women to the tomb of Jesus.

6. The Gospels frrequently protray women as being more spiritually perceptive than men. Mark portrays men as having little faith (Mark 4:40;6:52) while commending women (Mark 5:25-34;7:24-30)

7. Christian baptism was for all, men and women. Traditional Judaism of the period only ordained men in this manner. The original initiation rite could only be men, circumcision.. but in Christ no distinction is made.

I could continue this diatribe but my point has been made. People that continue to hammer the Bible and Christianity was being anti-woman/women either have not read it or have not read it and interpreted it correctly which is usually the case in many misunderstandings or misconceptions about the Bible or Christianity. People should indeed eductate themselves before passing judgement. Otherwise they end up looking foolish and unread. A person that is willing to intellectually debate another persons point of view needs to understand that persons point of view before debating them.


ArtWerx said...

The Father chose Mary to bring the Saviour of Mankind into the world without involving a human male. I think that's honouring women ALOT! But if a person lacked the faith to believe that He did such a thing, well then they wouldn't be as capable of seeing the honour. Unbelievers aren't very strong in the good reasoning & common sense department, since the Spirit of God is the "spirit of a sound mind", so i guess it's not really surprising that they don't figure out that they should give Christianity's premises full credit for honouring women, even if they don't believe them to be true.

Andy Pierson said...

Agreed. I just wish there was a way to get through the irrational emotionalism to get "reactive" non-beleivers to listen and reason for even a minute or two. It is a source of frustration for me. Perhaps I am getting some seeds planted but I am not seeing it.

Related Posts Plugin for WordPress, Blogger...
Related Posts Plugin for WordPress, Blogger...