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The Elect Lady 

“The elder unto the elect lady and her children, whom I love in the truth; and not I only, but also all they that have known the truth.” (2 John 1:1)

The Greek word for “lady” (kuria) is used only two times in the Bible, and both of these occurrences are here in the one-chapter epistle of 2 John. It is also fascinating to note that kuria is the feminine form of kurios, which is the Greek word for “Lord.”

Evidently this “elect lady” was a special woman, very highly esteemed by the apostle John as a capable and conscientious mother to her children.

It is uncertain, however, whether this distinguished lady was a literal mother in the church with literal children or possibly a metaphor for the church itself, with the “children” its individual members. Good reasons can be given for both interpretations, and it may even be that John wrote his letter with this dual meaning in mind under the inspiration of the Holy Spirit.

In either case, it is significant that this mother is called “lady” instead of the much more frequently used “woman” (Greek gune), or even “mother” (Greek meter). The Greek kuria was evidently used to stress deep respect and honor to such a mother in the church. She clearly was training her children in “the truth,” much as Timothy’s mother, Eunice, and grandmother, Lois, had brought him up to have “unfeigned faith” in “the holy scriptures, which are able to make thee wise unto salvation through faith which is in Christ Jesus” (2 Timothy 1:5; 3:15).

In addition to faith in God’s truth, of course, there should be genuine love. The second use of kuria is in verse 5: “And now I beseech thee, lady, not as though I wrote a new commandment unto thee, but that which we had from the beginning, that we love one another” (2 John 1:5). HMM

DAYS OF PRAISEMay 13, 2018

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Creationism Stiintific: Aparitia popoarelor partea I:

 

 

 

Conform Bibliei, toti oamenii de pe Pamant au provenit de la Noe, sotia sa, trei fii ai sai si nevestele lor, iar mai inainte de asta de la Adam si Eva (Geneza 1-11). Insa astazi pe Pamant traiesc grupuri de oameni numite ”rase”, care dupa infatisarea exterioara se diferentiaza. Una din aceste deosebiri este culoarea pielii. Multi oameni considera acest lucru ca o dovada ca istoria biblica a aparitiei popoarelor este gresita. Ei cred ca aceste grupuri de oameni au aparut doar printr-o evolutie separata pe parcursul a zeci de mii de ani.

 

 

In realitate pe Pamant exista doar o singura ”rasa” — rasa oamenilor. Biblia ne invata ca Dumnezeu ”Dintr-un singur om, El a făcut fiecare neam de oameni” Fapte 17:26. Sfinta Scriptura deosebeste oamenii dupa triburi si popoare, dar nu dupa culoare sau alte deosebiri exterioare. Reprezentantii diferitor popoare se pot incrucisa liber intre ei si pot da urmasi. Aceasta demonstreaza ca diferentele biologice intre ”rase” nu sunt asa de mari. In principiu, diferentele in compozitia ADN sunt minore. Daca luam doua persoane din oricare parte a lumii, atunci diferenta ADN lor alcatuieste 0,2%.

 

 

Antropologii impart omenirea in cateva grupe principale: europeoida (alba), mongoloida (chinezii, eschimoshii si indienii americani), negroida (negrii africani) si australoida (aborigenii australieni). In cadrul lor se pot diferentia diferite subgrupuri.

 

 

Practic toti evolutionistii din zilele nostre recunosc, ca diferite grupe de oameni nu puteau sa aiba origine diferita, cu alte cuvinte ei nu puteau sa evolutioneze din diferite specii de animale. In acest fel sustinatorii evolutiei sunt de acord cu creationistii ca toate grupele de popoare au provenit de la un numar initial comun de oameni. Multi oameni insa cred ca asa diferente mari ale exteriorului uman puteau sa se dezvolte numai intr-o perioada lunga de timp.

 

 

Sa examinam spre exemplu, problema culorii pielii. In realitate toti oamenii au unul si acelasi pigment, care reda pielii o anumita nuanta de culoare, numit — melanin. Acest pigment maro-intunecat, care persista la fiecare din noi in anumite celule ale pielii. Daca omul nu are melanin (cum se intimpla la albinosi, persoane care sufera de o mutatie transmisa genetic din care cauza celule isi pierd capacitatea de a produce melanina ) atunci culoarea pelii este absolut alba sau roza. Daca in celule se produce putina melanina, se primeste un european alb, daca multa un african negru, iar intre ele toate nuantele de cafeniu. Acesta este unicul pigment, care influenteaza formarea culorii albe. Aceasta situatie este adevarata nu doar in cazul culorii pielii. De exemplu, ochii lunguieti ai asiaticilor este rezultatul unui strat de grasime mai mare pe incretaturile de la pleoape. Si la asiatici cat si la europeni despicatura ochiului este determinata de prezenta stratului de grasime, numai ca la europeni este mai putina.

 

 

Melanina protejeaza pielea de razele ultraviolete ale soarelui. Cu cat mai des omul se expune la soare cu atat sunt mai mari sansele de a avea arsuri de la soare sau cancer de piele. Daca in celulele voastre este exces de melanina, insa locuiti in regiuni unde zilele cu soare sunt putine, organismului dumneavoastra ii va fi mai greu sa produca cantitatea necesara de vitamina D. In acest caz omul sufera de insuficienta de vitamina D, ceea ce poate duce la boli de oase (de exemplu, rahitism).

 

 

De mentionat este faptul ca omul nu se naste cu o anumita cantitate de melanina, ci doar cu abilitatile date genetic de a produce melanina in anumita cantitate, insa aceasta cantitate crestere in dependenta de intensitatea razelor solare.

 

 

Fiecare din noi poarta in sine informatia despre propriul organism, ca si proiectul unei cladiri construite. Acest ”proiect” determina nu doar ca aceasta fiinta va fi anume om, dar si ca el va avea ochi albastri, nas bombat, picioare lungi si asa mai departe. O mare parte din aceasta informatie este pastrata in ADN. ”Proiectul” omului este scris cu ajutorul unui cod special in forma de legaturi chimice lungi ADN. ADN — cea mai efectiva sistema de pastrare a informatiei. Scrisa in acest fel informatia se copiaza (reorganizeaza) din generatie in generatie. Asa dar, ovulul fecundat contine toata informatia, jumatate (23 cromozomi) de la tatal, iar cealalta jumatate (23 cromozomi) de la mama. Astfel de mecanism este foarte folositor, deoarece in cazul in care persoana mosteneste o gena deteriorata de la unul din parinti, de exemplu celulele produc ghemoglobina care nu este normala, atunci gena primita de la celalat parinte va fi normala si o va compensa pe cea cu probleme dand posibilitate organismului sa produca proteine normale.

 

 

In acest fel, defectul il va purta doar jumatate din ghemoglobin. In genomul fiecarui om se contin sute de erori, mostenite de la unul din parinti, care nu se manifesta, deoarece ”se ascund” in activitatea celeilalte gene normale.

 

 

Noi cunoastem ca culoarea pielii este determinata mai mult decat de o pereche de gene. Dar pentru simplitate sa presupunem ca genele sunt doar doua, si ele sunt situate pe cromosomi in pozitiile A si B. O forma a genei, M ”da comanda” sa produca multa melanina; cealalta m — putina melanina. Pe pozitia A pot aparea combinatiile genelor, MAmA si mAmA, care dau celulelor pielii semnalul sa produca mult, nu prea mult si putina melanina. In fel asemanator, pe pozitia B pot fi combinatiile MBMB, MBmB si mBmB care la randul lor dau semnalul sa produca mult, nu prea mult si putina melanina. In acest fel, oamenii cu o culoare a pielii foarte intunecata, pot avea urmatoarea combinatie de gene, de exemplu, MAmA MBMB. Deoarece si spermatoizii si ovulele la astfel de oameni pot contine doar gene MAMB, copii lor se vor naste doar cu aceasta combinatie de gene, ca si parintii lor. Prin urmare toti acesti copii vor avea culoarea pielii foarte intunecata. In acelasi fel la oamenii cu culoarea pielii deschisa cu combinatia genelor mAmA mBmB se pot naste copii doar cu aceasta combinatie de gene. Noi putem apela la ajutorul unei scheme deosebite numita ”tabelul luiPenneta”. Pe partea stinga sunt mentionate combinatiile genetice posibile pentru spermatozoid, pe partea dreapta pentru ovul. In fiecare intersectie a liniei si coloanei este scrisa combinatia genelor in urma fecundarii date de ovul si spermatozoid. Astfel dispersarea nuantelor culorii pielii de la foarte deschis pana la foarte inchis, se poate manifesta doar dupa o singura generatie, la urmasii de pe urma casatoriei oamenilor mulatrii cu o astfel de combinatie de gene.

 

 

Daca oamenii ”albi” (mAmA mBmB) se vor casatorii doar cu persoane de aceeasi culoare a pielii si se vor muta in locuri unde copii lor nu se vor putea intilni cu oameni de o culoare a pielii mai inchisa, atunci in final se va forma ”curat” in sens ca va deveni ”linia alba” — ei vor pierde genele necesare pentru producerea unei cantitati mari de melanina si culoarea pielii intunecate. Dar daca reprezentantii ambelor combinatii de linii se vor avanta in casatorii incrucisate, procesul va decurge invers. Intr-o perioada scurta de timp urmasii de pe urma acestor casatorii ne vor demonstra totalitatea spectrului de nuante a culorii pielii, in cadrul uneia si aceleiasi familii.

 

 

Daca toti oamenii de pe Pamant s-ar avanta liber in casatorii incrucisate, iar pe urma s-ar impartii in grupuri intimplatore si se vor castori doar intre ei, ar rezulta o multime de noi combinatii, de exemplu, urmasi cu ochi lunguieti iar culoarea pielii neagra, ochi albastrii cu par scurt negru si cretos si asa mai departe.

 

Majoritatea savantilor din zilele nostre sunt de acord cu ideea, ca pentru omul modern termenul de ”rasa” practic este lipsit de un sens biologic. Si aceasta este un argument serios impotriva teoriei dezvoltarii izolate a grupelor de popoare pe parcursul unei perioade foarte indelungate de timp.

 

VA URMA

 articol preluat de la blogul:CREATIONISMUL STINTIFIC

http://creationismulstiintific.blogspot.ro/2013/06/aparitia-popoarelor-partea-i.html#more

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Florin Ianovici – Viata crestina este o ingenunchere intre lighean si stergar

surs (facebook) click pe poza pentru sursa

Adevarul ramane adevar indiferent de pozitia in care te aduce viata si de ceea ce faci. Viata lui Isus nu arata grozav atunci cand il vezi ingenuncheat, cu stergarul, langa picioarele murdare, in fata unor ucenici care il vor trada si unul il va vinde.

Toate aceste realitati dramatice nu schimba adevarul. Care adevar? Adevarul ca Isus Hristos, Cel ingenuncheat, este Regele Regilor, Creatorul stelelor si al apei si ca El troneaza peste toate.

Adevarul este ca suntem fii de regi nu prin felul in care se vede viata: bucurii, succes, copii buni si cuminti, sot iubitor, sanatate…! Nu prin aspectul vietii suntem fii de rege ci prin atitudinea pe care o avem si anume intelepciunea de a ne pleca si a accepta chemarea de a sluji semenii de dragul lui Hristos.

Viata crestina este o ingenunchere intre lighean si stergar

in fata unor picioare murdare

pe care le spalam cu increderea

ca intr-o zi vor alerga pentru Isus.

Articole asemanatoare

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SCRISOAREA DESCHISA PENTRU PREDICATORI

Posted on august 3, 2012 by strainisicalatori

SCRISOAREA DESCHISA PENTRU PREDICATORI

Dragi frati care ne aduceti Cuvantul din partea Lui Dumnezeu…Cerintele de mai jos reprezinta parte din durerile noastre si ceea ce am dori sa auzim de la voi… Intelegem ca viata pe pamant e o sansa de a o trai cu lumea sau cu Dumnezeu. Am ales sa o traim cu Dumnezeu,de aceea ne pasa ce sfaturi primim prin  predicile voastre,si va rog in numele Domnului Isus:

*SPUNETI-NE ca putem avea fanfare si coruri profesioniste,solisti si predicatori exceptionali si totusi,doar sa ne mearga numele ca traim,asemenea Biserici din Sardes.

*SPUNETI-NE ca putem avea programe incarcate pe diferite puncte,organizate ca la carte,fara prezenta Domnului in ele,precum Biserica din Laodicea careia ii spune Domnul :”Iata Eu stau la usa si bat”.

SPUNETI-NE mai multe marturii din viata voastra din experientele cu Dumnezeu ce le-ati trait si mai putine din vietile misionarilor care au trait cu nu stiu cate sute de ani in urma..

*SPUNETI-LE baietilor si nu numai,ca pornografia se combate cu monitorul stins si cu Biblia deschisa.

*SPUNETI-LE fetelor ca e mai ferice sa fie batatorit (in genunchi) covorul din odaita decat cel din fata oglinzii (in picioare).

*SPUNETI-NE ca o ora de rugaciune face mai mult 1000 de ore pe yahoo messenger /F-book.

*SPUNTI-NE ca NU vom vedea Canaanul ceresc daca credem ca Isus e o stanca pe care o lovesti cand ai nevoie de apa.

*SPUNETI-NE ca Isus nu e doar o trusa de prim ajutor la care alergi doar cand copilul are o boala fizica,ci e acelasi Domn la care ar trebui parintii sa alerge si  cand copii sunt loviti de boli spirituale.

*SPUNETI-LE celor care vin la 9:25 la adunare si pleaca la 12 fara 5 ,ca Isus a “stat”mai mult timp pe cruce decat stau ei pe scaun.

*SPUNETI-NE ca diplomele si carierele noastre fara o viata de pocainta reala palesc in fata Mantuitorului si a copiilor Lui.

*NU NE SPUNETI ca pacatele mici nu sunt importante,

*NU NE SPUNETI doar de Har ,ci amintiti-ne ca Hristos e si un foc mistuitor.

*SPUNETI-NE ca Recabiti au fost incercati in singurul lucru care il putem face mai usor din tot ce le-a poruncit tatal lor.Cu siguranta era mai usor pentru Ieremia sa le ceara sa bea vin decat sa isi faca case.Si era mai usor si pentru ei sa se scuze ca cel mai mare proroc din tara le-a cerut asta.

*SPUNET-NE ,asadar parinti nostri  au fost oameni verticali,care au trait Biblia si noi suntem tentati sa “vindem”principile prin scolile unde ne aflam.

*SPUNETI-NE ca bunicii nostri  preferau o vizita la orfani,vaduve sau bolnavi,intre cele doua programe de duminica,decat trei ore de somn.

*SPUNETI-NE ca ei posteau 3 zile pe saptamana si mergeau la sapa si lucru la camp toata ziua,iar noi lucram la birou si multi dintre noi nu avem nici macar o zi de post pe saptamana.

*SPUNETI-NE ca ei plangeau la fiecare predica,noi mai mult zambim,oare ce o mai fi si asta?!Ca predici nu sunt!.

*SPUNETI-NE ca praful de pe Biblia noastra ne va condamna in ziua judecatii daca nu o citim si nu o traim. Cand stiti ca urmeaza o duminica,sau joi,sau orice alta zi cand trebuie sa ne aduceti un mesaj,va rugam stati mai mult pe genunchi ,decat in fata buletinelor de stiri,vrem predici cu adevarat nu stiri despre politica.(ca am vazut ca politica o jucati bine de tot).

*SPUNETI-NE ,dragi predicatori “Adevarul”.fara sa va fie teama ca nu veti fi alesi la urmatoarele alegeri in comitet.Adevarul a biruit in arenele romane,cu atat mai mult va birui unde sunt oameni care doresc sa traieasca.

*SPUNETI-NE sa ne rugam ca Domnul sa scoata lucratori la secerisul Lui,oameni cu darurile Duhului Sfant.Nu va multumiti ca in biserica aveti doar oameni care stiu sa spuna poezi ori sa   cante. Oratori, sunt si in lume.Profesionalism gasim si la Filarmonica. Ceea ce ne dorim este mai multa prezenta a Duhului si mai putina prezenta a “noastra”.Mai multa rugaciune,mai multe predici pentru nevoile noastre si mai putin spectacol religios (daca s-ar putea deloc).

*SPUNETI-NE ca exista si IAD ,nu doar numai RAI.

*SPUNETI-NE ca putem  sa stim  capitole din Biblie pe de rost si totusi sa ajungem in iad,daca nu le implinim.

*SPUNETI-NE ca putem trai langa oameni ca Pavel si totusi sa ne intoarcem la lucrurile lumi din Tesalonic ca si Dima,daca nu avem o relatie personala cu Domnul.

*NU VA MULTUMITI ca aveti in biserica oameni care va lauda.Nu uitati de roaba cu duh de ghicire care s-a luat dupa Pavel si striga:”Oamenii acestia sunt robi Dumnezeului Celui Prea Inalt si ei va vestesc calea manturii”. Diferenta dintre Pavel si alti predicatori (voi) a fost ca,el nu amesteca sfintenia cu nelegiuirea. Vroia  sa fie oameni sfintii . Si pentru ca vroia asta,au fost batuti cu nuiele.De ce? Pentru ca s-a eliberat pe el si   pe Sila de …aplauze.

*CHEMATI-NE mai aproape de Isus ,la o viata adevarata de pocainta!

*CHEMATI-NE la sacrificiu,pentru lucrarea Domnului.!

*CHEMATI-NE la dragoste si iubire pentru Domnul si pentru frati !

-Am citit despre o tanara care pana la 21 de ani nu a fost chemata macar o data la rugaciune cu familia.Tatal ei era slujitor in adunare.

SPUNETI-LE la astfel de parinti ca pocainta din famile e mai importanta decat cea afisata la oricare biserica din tara la amvon.

*INCA CEVA ERA SA UIT :Voi sunteti batrani (cei mai multi dintre voi) ar fi bine  sa veniti la lucrurile cu care ati inceput :la adevarata slujire  si sa sfarsiti la fel, in pocainta ca no sa mai traiti mult printre noi si de ce  sa nu plecati cu sufletul impacat si constinta treaza: ca ne-ati impartit drept Cuvantul Adevarului…

~VA MULTUMESC~ (un tanar ce traieste inca in Babilonul acestei lumi,cu fereastra deschisa spre Ierusalim,nu departe de groapa cu lei)

****PS.Cine crede ca acest mesaj e doar pentru predicatori,este rugat sa  il reciteasca.

~strainisicalatori~http://strainisicalatori.wordpress.com/2012/08/03/scrisoarea-deschisa-pentru-predicatori/

(dutu)

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Probe Ministries: Christianity: The Best Thing That Ever Happened to Women

Wednesday, November 09, 2011 10:17 AM

Written by Sue Bohlin

The Low Status of Women in Jesus’ Day

Some feminists charge that Christianity, the Bible, and the Church are anti-female and horribly oppressive to women. Does God really hate women? Did the apostle Paul disrespect them in his New Testament writings? In this article we’ll be looking at why Christianity is the best thing that ever happened to women, with insights from Alvin Schmidt’s book How Christianity Changed the World.{1} 

‘What would be the status of women in the Western world today had Jesus Christ never entered the human arena? One way to answer this question,” writes Dr. Schmidt, ‘is to look at the status of women in most present-day Islamic countries. Here women are still denied many rights that are available to men, and when they appear in public, they must be veiled. In Saudi Arabia, for instance, women are even barred from driving an automobile. Whether in Saudi Arabia or in many other Arab countries where the Islamic religion is adhered to strongly, a man has the right to beat and sexually desert his wife, all with the full support of the Koran. . . .{2} This command is the polar opposite of what the New Testament says regarding a man’s relationship with his wife. Paul told the Christians in Ephesus, ‘Husbands, love your wives, just as Christ loved the church and gave himself up for her.’ And he added, ‘He who loves his wife loves himself.’{3} 

Jesus loved women and treated them with great respect and dignity. The New Testament’s teaching on women developed His perspective even more. The value of women that permeates the New Testament isn’t found in the Greco-Roman culture or the cultures of other societies.

In ancient Greece, a respectable woman was not allowed to leave the house unless she was accompanied by a trustworthy male escort. A wife was not permitted to eat or interact with male guests in her husband’s home; she had to retire to her woman’s quarters. Men kept their wives under lock and key, and women had the social status of a slave. Girls were not allowed to go to school, and when they grew up they were not allowed to speak in public. Women were considered inferior to men. The Greek poets equated women with evil. Remember Pandora and her box? Woman was responsible for unleashing evil on the world.{4}  

The status of Roman women was also very low. Roman law placed a wife under the absolute control of her husband, who had ownership of her and all her possessions. He could divorce her if she went out in public without a veil. A husband had the power of life and death over his wife, just as he did his children. As with the Greeks, women were not allowed to speak in public.{5} 

Jewish women, as well, were barred from public speaking. The oral law prohibited women from reading the Torah out loud. Synagogue worship was segregated, with women never allowed to be heard.

 Jesus and Women

Jesus’ treatment of women was very different:

The extremely low status that the Greek, Roman, and Jewish woman had for centuries was radically affected by the appearance of Jesus Christ. His actions and teachings raised the status of women to new heights, often to the consternation and dismay of his friends and enemies. By word and deed, he went against the ancient, taken-for-granted beliefs and practices that defined woman as socially, intellectually, and spiritually inferior.

The humane and respectful way Jesus treated and responded to the Samaritan woman [at the well] (recorded in John 4) may not appear unusual to readers in today’s Western culture. Yet what he did was extremely unusual, even radical. He ignored the Jewish anti-Samaritan prejudices along with prevailing view that saw women as inferior beings.{6}

 He started a conversation with her—a Samaritan, a woman—in public. The rabbinic oral law was quite explicit: “He who talks with a woman [in public] brings evil upon himself.” Another rabbinic teaching prominent in Jesus’ day taught, “One is not so much as to greet a woman.”{7} So we can understand why his disciples were amazed to find him talking to a woman in public. Can we even imagine how it must have stunned this woman for the Messiah to reach out to her and offer her living water for her thirsty soul?

Among Jesus’ closest friends were Mary, Martha and Lazarus, who entertained him at their home. “Martha assumed the traditional female role of preparing a meal for Jesus, her guest, while her sister Mary did what only men would do, namely, learn from Jesus’ teachings. Mary was the cultural deviant, but so was Jesus, because he violated the rabbinic law of his day [about speaking to women].”{8} By teaching Mary spiritual truths, he violated another rabbinic law, which said, “Let the words of the Law [Torah] be burned rather than taught to women. . . . If a man teaches his daughter the law, it is as though he taught her lechery.”{9} 

When Lazarus died, Jesus comforted Martha with this promise containing the heart of the Christian gospel: “I am the resurrection and the life. He who believes in me will live, even though he dies; and whoever lives and believes in me will never die. Do you believe this?” (John 11:25-26) These remarkable words were spoken to a woman! “To teach a woman was bad enough, but Jesus did more than that. He called for a verbal response from Martha. Once more, he went against the socioreligious custom by teaching a woman and by having her publicly respond to him, a man.”{10} 

“All three of the Synoptic Gospels note that women followed Jesus, a highly unusual phenomenon in first-century Palestine. . . . This behavior may not seem unusual today, but in Jesus’ day it was highly unusual. Scholars note that in the prevailing culture only prostitutes and women of very low repute would follow a man without a male escort.”{11} These women were not groupies; some of them provided financial support for Jesus and the apostles (Luke 8:3).

The first people Jesus chose to appear to after his resurrection were women; not only that, but he instructed them to tell his disciples that he was alive (Matt. 28, John 20). In a culture where a woman’s testimony was worthless because she was worthless, Jesus elevated the value of women beyond anything the world had seen.

 Paul, Peter, and Women

Jesus gave women status and respect equal to men. Not only did he break with the anti-female culture of his era, but he set a standard for Christ-followers. Peter and Paul both rose to the challenge in what they wrote in the New Testament.

In a culture that feared the power of a woman’s external beauty and feminine influence, Peter encouraged women to see themselves as valuable because God saw them as valuable. His call to aspire to the inner beauty of a trusting and tranquil spirit is staggeringly counter-cultural. He writes, “Your beauty should not come from outward adornment, such as braided hair and the wearing of gold jewelry and fine clothes. Instead, 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. For this is the way the holy women of the past who put their hope in God used to make themselves beautiful.”

Equally staggering is his call to men to elevate their wives with respect and understanding: “Husbands, 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.” Consideration, respect, fellow heirs; these concepts sound good to us, but they were unheard of in the first century!

The apostle Paul is often accused of being a misogynist, one who hates and fears women. But Paul’s teachings on women reflect the creation order and high value God places on women as creatures made in his image. Paul’s commands for husbands and wives in Ephesians 5 provided a completely new way to look at marriage: as an earthbound illustration of the spiritual mystery of the union of Christ and His bride, the church. He calls wives to not only submit to their husbands as to the Lord, but he calls husbands to submit to Christ (1 Cor. 11:3). He calls men to love their wives in the self-sacrificing way Christ loves the church. In a culture where a wife was property, and a disrespected piece of property at that, Paul elevates women to a position of honor previously unknown in the world.

Paul also provided highly countercultural direction for the New Testament church. In the Jewish synagogue, women had no place and no voice in worship. In the pagan temples, the place of women was to serve as prostitutes. The church, on the other hand, was a place for women to pray and prophecy out loud (1 Cor. 11:5). The spiritual gifts—supernatural enablings to build God’s church—are given to women as well as men. Older women are commanded to teach younger ones. The invitation to women to participate in worship of Jesus was unthinkable—but true.

Misogyny in the Church

Author Dorothy Sayers, a friend of C.S. Lewis, wrote:

Perhaps it is no wonder that the women were first at the Cradle and last at the Cross. They had never known a man like this Man—there had never been such another. A prophet and teacher who never nagged at them, who never flattered or coaxed or patronized; who never made arch jokes about them, never treated them either as ‘The women, God help us!’ or ‘The ladies, God bless them!’; who rebuked without querulousness and praised without condescension; who took their questions and arguments seriously, who never mapped out their sphere for them, never urged them to be feminine or jeered at them for being female; who had no ax to grind and no uneasy male dignity to defend; who took them as he found them and was completely unselfconscious.

She continues: “There is no act, no sermon, no parable in the whole Gospel that borrows its pungency from female perversity; nobody could possibly guess from the words of Jesus that there was anything ‘funny’ about woman’s nature.{12} And this is one of the unfortunate truths about Christianity we have to acknowledge: over the centuries, many Christ-followers have fallen far short of the standard Jesus set in showing the worth and dignity of women.

In the second century Clement of Alexandria believed and taught that every woman should blush because she is a woman. Tertullian, who lived about the same time, said, “You [Eve] are the devil’s gateway. . . . You destroyed so easily God’s image, man. On account of your desert, that is death, even the Son of God had to die.” Augustine, in the fourth century, believed that a woman’s image of God was inferior to that of the man’s.{13} And unfortunately it gets even nastier than that.

Some people mistakenly believe these contemptuous beliefs of the church fathers are rooted in an anti-female Bible, but that couldn’t be farther from the truth. People held these misogynistic beliefs in spite of, not because of, the biblical teachings. Those who dishonor God by dishonoring His good creation of woman allow themselves to be shaped by the beliefs of the surrounding pagan, anti-female culture instead of following Paul’s exhortation to not be conformed to this world, but be transformed by the renewing of our minds (Rom. 12:2). The church in North America does the same thing today by allowing the secular culture to shape our thinking more than the Bible. Only nine percent of Americans claiming to be born-again have a biblical worldview.{14} The church in Africa and Asia does the same thing today by allowing animism, the traditional folk religion, to shape their thinking more than the Bible.

It’s unfortunate that some of the church fathers did not allow the woman-honoring principles found in Scripture to change their unbiblical beliefs. But that is the failing of imperfect followers of Jesus, not a failure of God nor of His Word. Jesus loves women.

 Effects of Christianity on Culture

As Christianity spread throughout the world, its redemptive effects elevated women and set them free in many ways. The Christian ethic declared equal worth and value for both men and women. Husbands were commanded to love their wives and not exasperate their children. These principles were in direct conflict with the Roman institution of patria potestas, which gave absolute power of life and death over a man’s family, including his wife. When patria potestas was finally repealed by an emperor who was moved by high biblical standards, what a tremendous effect that had on the culture! Women were also granted basically the same control over their property as men, and, for the first time, mothers were allowed to be guardians of their children.{15} 

The biblical view of husbands and wives as equal partners caused a sea change in marriage as well. Christian women started marrying later, and they married men of their own choosing. This eroded the ancient practice of men marrying child brides against their will, often as young as eleven or twelve years old. The greater marital freedom that Christianity gave women eventually gained wide appeal. Today, a Western woman is not compelled to marry someone she does not want, nor can she legally be married as a child bride. But the practice continues in parts of the world where Christianity has little or no presence.{16}  

Another effect of the salt and light of Christianity was its impact on the common practice of polygamy, which demeans women. Many men, including biblical heroes, have had multiple wives, but Jesus made clear this was never God’s intention. Whenever he spoke about marriage, it was always in the context of monogamy. He said, “The two [not three or four] will become one flesh.” As Christianity spread, God’s intention of monogamous marriages became the norm.{17} 

Two more cruel practices were abolished as Christianity gained influence. In some cultures, such as India, widows were burned alive on their husbands’ funeral pyres. In China, the crippling practice of foot binding was intended to make women totter on their pointed, slender feet in a seductive manner. It was finally outlawed only about a hundred years ago.{18} 

As a result of Jesus Christ and His teachings, women in much of the world today, especially in the West, enjoy more privileges and rights than at any other time in history. It takes only a cursory trip to an Arab nation or to a Third World country to see how little freedom women have in countries where Christianity has had little or no presence.{19} It’s the best thing that ever happened to women.

Notes 

1. Schmidt, Alvin. How Christianity Changed the World. Originally published under the title Under the Influence: How Christianity Transformed Civilization (Grand Rapids: Zondervan, 2001), which is the copy I reference in these notes.
2. “Men stand superior to women…. But those whose perverseness ye fear, admonish them and remove them into bedchambers and beat them; but if they submit to you then do not seek a way against them” Sura 4:34, as quoted in Schmidt, p. 97.
3. Schmidt, p. 97-98.
4. Ibid., p. 98-99.
5. Ibid., p. 101.
6. Ibid., p. 102-03.
7. Ibid.
8. Ibid.
9. Ibid., p. 103-104.
10. Ibid., p. 104.
11. Ibid., p. 104-105.
12. Dorothy L. Sayers, Are Women Human? (Grand Rapids: Eerdmans, 1971), 47.
13. Schmidt, p. 109.
14. “A Biblical Worldview Has a Radical Effect on a Person’s Life,” The Barna Research Group, Ltd. http://www.barna.org/FlexPage.aspx?Page=BarnaUpdate&BarnaUpdateID=154.
15. Ibid., p. 111.
16. Ibid., pp. 111-112.
17. Ibid., p. 115.
18. Ibid., pp. 118-119.
19. Ibid., p. 115.

© 2005 Probe Ministries


About the Author

Sue Bohlin is an associate speaker with Probe Ministries. She attended the University of Illinois, and has been a Bible teacher and conference speaker for over 30 years. She is a frequent speaker for MOPS (Mothers of Pre-Schoolers) and Stonecroft Ministries (Christian Women’s Connections), and serves on the board and as a small group leader of Living Hope Ministries, a Christ centered outreach to those dealing with unwanted homosexuality. Sue is on the Bible.org Women’s Leadership Team and is a regular contributor to TheTapestryBlog.com. She is also a professional calligrapher and the webmistress for Probe Ministries; but most importantly, she is the wife of Dr. Ray Bohlin and the mother of their two grown sons. Her personal website is suebohlin.com.

What is Probe?

Probe Ministries is a non-profit ministry whose mission is to assist the church in renewing the minds of believers with a Christian worldview and to equip the church to engage the world for Christ. Probe fulfills this mission through our Mind Games conferences for youth and adults, our 3-minute daily radio program, and our extensive Web site at www.probe.org.

Further information about Probe’s materials and ministry may be obtained by contacting us at:

Probe Ministries
2001 W. Plano Parkway, Suite 2000
Plano TX 75075
(972) 941-4565
info@probe.org
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Copyright information

K Dee Ignatin · Founder & Executive Director at Americans Against Abuses of Polygamy

Ms. Bohlin, Thank you for addressing the plight of the history of human rights for women in this piece. I’d also like to extend my gratitude for your mention of the crime/human rights abuse of women through polygamy, which unfortunately, is making a phenomenal resurgence right here in America, today. I hope more Christians, like you, wake up to this growing threat to women’s rights, soon. Otherwise, as we move into a post Judeo-Christian world, the roll back to barbarism against girl children and women will make our age seem like a golden one for women’s rights to our own great granddaughters.

http://www.afa.net/Blogs/BlogPost.aspx?id=2147513617

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