Friday, July 02, 2010

Pastoring Women

What does this mean? Women who pastor, or men who pastor women? Shockingly, it is the latter.

Somehow I am not surprised that the following "sex act" theology comes from a relative of Bruce Ware. Here is what Owen Strachan wrote on the blog Pastoring Women in order pastor women,
    These different roles depend, we should note, both on divine fiat and on the different constitutional and physiological realities which this creative force brought into being.[8] Generally speaking, God made men physically stronger, analytically inclined, and the initiator of the childbearing process. Women are often physically weaker and more emotionally and linguistically attuned than men, and they require physical initiation to bear children. The very bodies of women show that they are designed to nurture children, even if our culture wants to overlook these basic bodily realities. The wisdom of God’s will is embodied by the men and women who bear his image. What God has called women to be in spirit he has made them to be in body.
I will let commenters remark on the many stereotypes found here. But I want to point out that in the scriptures many sex acts which lead to the birth of significant children were initiated by women. Think of Rachel, Hannah, Ruth, and Tamar. I thought at first that most, if not all, historic conceptions recorded in the Bible were initiated by women, and that this was proper. But I have changed my mind.

It appears to me, on reflection, that a sex act can be initiated by either a man or a woman - this important role does not belong to exclusively to one gender. I think that is what Paul meant in 1 Cor. 7 - he meant that it belongs to the man to have the power to arouse the woman, and it belongs to the woman to have the power to arouse the man. This is the reciprocity that Paul writes about.

Anyway, there is lots more to life, and as we age and enter into caring for children, parents, siblings and friends, and life rounds out and fills in, the almighty sex act is not the central piece that this paragraph makes it out to be. We find ourselves to be siblings and friends, coworkers and colleagues, journeying together, finding that we have more in common all the time. We are all of us, women and men, vulnerable, courageous, kind, fearful, voluble and at a loss for words, dense and insightful.

Well, this blog is quite disturbing but it goes to show that some of what I have heard others mention, really is taught to women.

On a final note, I really like what Susan Hunt writes.


Suzanne McCarthy said...

I forgot to add that breastfeeding has been on the rise for at least the past 40 years. It was at an all time low during the industrial revolution. In fact, one of the impulses of feminism was to improve the lot of women during this very difficult era.

I think women today are very in touch with their nurturing side. Not all of us, and not all the time, but we do try.

Don said...

My take is people see (and imagine) what they want to see. That is, the non-egals ARE actually seeing what they claim to see, but they do not see why they see it is due to their worldview. This is very hard for ANYONE to step out of, it takes effort.

Kristen said...

1 Cor. 7 talks a lot about the blessings of not getting married. Paul speaks of both men and women as being blessed if they consider this option.

Clearly women as well as men were designed for more than just procreation and the bringing up of the next generation. Paul's words imply that our primary purpose is "to glorify God and enjoy Him forever," as the old teaching goes. There are not different primary purposes for men than for women.

Ephesians 5 says that it's the man's job to "nurture and cherish" his wife-- not the other way around. Nurturing and cherishing are clearly considered part of what a man is "designed for," too.

Why are non-egals so focused on the flesh? 2 Cor 5:16 says, "therefore we regard no one any longer according to the flesh." Christians are supposed to look on one another in terms of the spiritual realities of the "new creation." Non-egals want to stay in the flesh, where the curse of "he shall rule over you" still reigns.