Paleo asks about teaching Christian submission:
My wife and I (deacons / community group leaders) have been helping a late-twenty something single woman understand what it means to be a Godly woman. Surprise, surprise, *submission* and male-only eldership have been huge stumbling blocks for her. She is familiar with the pertinent scripture (she is a PK) so we decided to do two things:
- let her see how it works in practice (My wife is a successful business executive – VP level – who puts her family first and has no problem reconciling wifely submission)
- begin sharing a (non-biblical, secular) historical rationale for the idea that civilization is predicated on patriarchy. And conversely that Feminism and civilization are ultimately incompatible.
When I gently argued that female suffrage is directly related to the precipitous decline of the family and that the current declining peace and prosperity is directly related to that – well she lost her mind and has just notified us that she’s leaving the church.
Long set-up for my question: Is it possible to winsomely argue against feminist disasters like female suffrage in this day and age?
Is it possible? Of course. Does that mean a stubborn, prideful, rebellious woman is going to accept a logically flawless train of reasoning? To ask the question is to answer it.
The extent to which these attitudes are rooted in sinful rebellion are obvious from the fact that women holding them would rather leave the church than accept the Biblical and historical truths. And the church is as much better off without them in the fold as it is without unrepentant murderers, adulterers, thieves, and homosexuals. This may be a sub-optimal outcome, but it is by no means a negative one.
Paleo did make one mistake. He “gently argued”. He says that he would like to “winsomely argue” with these women and logically convince them of the error of their ways. (I will pause so the veteran players and masters of Game can stop laughing before I continue. Everybody done? All right then.) The problem is that women simply don’t respond to logic and sweet reason. They’re not wired that way. They respond to strength, confidence, and authority, all of which a man in a position of legitimate authority throws away when he starts treating her as if he’s insecure and afraid of hurting her feelings with the truth.
The Church grows when men thunder from the pulpits. The pews are filled when its leaders fearlessly reject sin and tell the sinners they must repent before they can stand in communion with the Body of Christ. If anyone is offended by the Word, the problem is with him, not with the man who speaks it.
Now, I don’t wish to be hard on Paleo or even to criticize him. He’s doing a lot more than the average feminized Churchian, who fears the female membership more than the Lord God Almighty and worships the unholy spirit of equality. But the fact that his heart is in the right place doesn’t mean that he’s going about it in the right way.
Jesus said “Fear not”. Game says “be bold”. The fact that the lesser truth is in harmony with the greater Truth should lend confidence that speaking the truth boldly, whether it makes the listeners uncomfortable or not, is the only way for every leader in the Church. Never back down. Never temporize.