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Curious

FJ Bible Study: Ephesians 5:21

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Curious

I was inspired to start that FJ Bible Study that we talked about in another thread a while back. The first entry is up on the blog here: http://www.freejinger.org/blog/2014/10/ ... sians-521/

Updated link:

 

Edited by OnceUponATime
adding tags + updating link

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FJismyheadship

You have Duggar Tumblr's approval lol. At least you are studying the bible instead of commenting on threads!

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Jasmar

Of course John MacArthur says there's a transition between verse 21 and the rest of the paragraph. He's a strident gender complementarian (Christianese for "women are second-class citizens"), and verse 21 contradicts their philosophy. It's the same way I'd heard that section taught for years, until last November.

The church my kids and I were visiting was teaching through Ephesians, and the pastor explained how verse 21, "submit to one another," was actually framing the rest of the section. So the emphasis is actually on believers submitting to one another - regardless of gender. I was still so brainwashed by the MacArthur-style interpretation that I was glad my husband wasn't with us, because he'd write the church off, and I was really wanting to make it home.

Eleven months later, husband is on his way to becoming Ex, and kids and I are joyfully attending that church full time.

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Curious
You have Duggar Tumblr's approval lol. At least you are studying the bible instead of commenting on threads!

I don't really understand tumblr so it took me a little while to figure out what you were talking about, but I finally did.

I don't think that the 2 things are mutually exclusive. I've commented on threads a few times today AND managed to type up a post. I'm a crazy multi-tasker ;)

I guess we will see how great it is when interpretations of the same verses don't mesh, which I suspect is going to be the case in at least some cases, just from being around FJ for a few years :o

In hindsight, I guess Bible Study might not have been the best subject line, but when we talked about it in the other thread that's what I called it and that was just stuck in my head. I don't know that it matters that much. People will read it or they won't :shrug:

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guitar_villain

Quick question: why is MacArthur asking what Paul thinks when Ephesians wasn't, as most scholars think, written by Paul? There are a number of philosophical differences between letters we know Paul wrote and Ephesians (is physical resurrection coming in the future vs. past spiritual resurrection in Christ) and the Greek is written in ways that aren't characteristic of Paul. (I have to take Ehrman at his word here- I can't read Greek)

This matters since Paul's view on women in the stuff we know he wrote is actually fairly progressive. Women were prominent in the early Jesus movement and Paul treats them well, going so far as calling Junia an apostle. But 1 Timothy, home of the classic "I do not permit a woman to teach or to have authority over a man." was almost certainly a forgery.

As far as the verse itself, I think you have done some disfavor to it by removing the surrounding verses. Depending on how you emphasize those, you can get quite different meanings. Amusingly, I just looked it up online and there's a big break between 21 and 22, with a section heading "Wives and Husbands" stuck in the middle in the ESV. That doesn't exist in the original Greek- there's no breaks at all in anything. The KJV doesn't include it. Other translations have different headings in different places and the verse scans differently with and without that break.

I'd like to think Christians would take it to mean, in the words of Bill and Ted, "Be excellent to each other"

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Curious
Of course John MacArthur says there's a transition between verse 21 and the rest of the paragraph. He's a strident gender complementarian (Christianese for "women are second-class citizens"), and verse 21 contradicts their philosophy. It's the same way I'd heard that section taught for years, until last November.

The church my kids and I were visiting was teaching through Ephesians, and the pastor explained how verse 21, "submit to one another," was actually framing the rest of the section. So the emphasis is actually on believers submitting to one another - regardless of gender. I was still so brainwashed by the MacArthur-style interpretation that I was glad my husband wasn't with us, because he'd write the church off, and I was really wanting to make it home.

Eleven months later, husband is on his way to becoming Ex, and kids and I are joyfully attending that church full time.

I know absolutely nothing about Bible people/scholars. I just randomly picked 2 different study bibles off the shelf, looked through them to make sure they were what I wanted and got them. I think the other one is from the Moody Bible Institute.

To be honest, I was slightly taken aback when I started reading the intro parts because obviously I'm not a bible literalist, so I kind of wasn't expecting that. I guess I was expecting a kind of neutral position, though in hindsight I'm not sure why I would expect that without doing more research on the books beforehand.

So anyway, I read though the sections I wanted to cover coming up with is Eph 5:21-6:9 and didn't find his explanation to be very "women as second class citizens," so that was one reason that I choose to use that book for this particular post. I did look at a lot of other materials for this post and didn't find anything that disagreed with this particularly interpretation, including several "easy read" bible versions, several "literal" versions (those were the ones that tended to use fear vs reverence) and a few different versions of the KJV.

If people have resources they would be better, I'm open to suggestions :)

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Curious
Quick question: why is MacArthur asking what Paul thinks when Ephesians wasn't, as most scholars think, written by Paul? There are a number of philosophical differences between letters we know Paul wrote and Ephesians (is physical resurrection coming in the future vs. past spiritual resurrection in Christ) and the Greek is written in ways that aren't characteristic of Paul. (I have to take Ehrman at his word here- I can't read Greek)

This matters since Paul's view on women in the stuff we know he wrote is actually fairly progressive. Women were prominent in the early Jesus movement and Paul treats them well, going so far as calling Junia an apostle. But 1 Timothy, home of the classic "I do not permit a woman to teach or to have authority over a man." was almost certainly a forgery.

As far as the verse itself, I think you have done some disfavor to it by removing the surrounding verses. Depending on how you emphasize those, you can get quite different meanings. Amusingly, I just looked it up online and there's a big break between 21 and 22, with a section heading "Wives and Husbands" stuck in the middle in the ESV. That doesn't exist in the original Greek- there's no breaks at all in anything. The KJV doesn't include it. Other translations have different headings in different places and the verse scans differently with and without that break.

I'd like to think Christians would take it to mean, in the words of Bill and Ted, "Be excellent to each other"

I can't answer the question about Paul off the top of my head. I'm not reading this book cover to cover :shock: When I go in the other room, I will look at the Ephesians chapter notes and see if there is any mention of this though.

I broke it out from the rest of the verses for 2 main reasons. First, we see it a lot with the fundies. They like to proof-text a lot, so pull out a sentence of a paragraph and make it stand on it's own, which IMO rarely works very well. Second, I write a lot and I don't want people to die of boredom, starvation, thirst, old age, etc before they get to the end of my posts.

I intended that post to be short, which I guess for me it was, but it was still pretty long :(

Maybe the thing do to is after going through all the verses in a particular grouping (paragraph/section/whatever) is to have a summary post with them all together and give a little refresher on what they mean when taken altogether?

Again, I'm open to suggestion for better resources. I'm pretty much winging it here at this point because our favorite people got me spooled up again this week :rawr:

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Jasmar

It's not necessary to dismiss the harder epistles by claiming they're forgeries, or not written by Paul, or whatever. I've learned a lot in the last year about the various cultural context issues surrounding all the passages that look mysogynistic, and it's been very informative. For example, The Junia Project has an excellent article on that section from Timothy:

Defusing the 1 Timothy 2:12 Bomb

Another good site is Christians for Biblical Equality:

http://www.cbeinternational.org

(I don't think tie necessary to break links, because these sites want to disseminate their message)

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Jasmar

Oh Curious, I wasn't criticizing you, I was whining about JM. :embarrassed:

He's wildly influential in evangelical Christianity, is considered very mainstream among evangelicals. He, like so many of them, comes across as saying the right things, but when you dig he's a mysogynistic, anti-mental health (very much a MOAR BIBLE approach), Calvinist know-it-all. The only reason I know what I do is because I've been in evangelical Christianity for about 17 years, and have listened to enough of his radio shows to have heard all of these things many times. I loathed him long before I started moving out of the complementarian flavor of evangelicalism.

I really didn't mean to make you feel badly. I'm sorry! I just REALLY dislike John MacArthur!

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dora

I have two Bibles, the Christian Community Bible (Catholic Pastoral Edition) which my Dad brought back from the Vatican, and th Schofield Study System KJV which was given to me by a funny lite family friend.

Schofield puts verses 19 and 20 as 'The inner life as the spirit-filled believer" but 21-33 are "The married life of spirit-filled believers in illustrating Christ and the church" so it disagrees with McArthur there. It gives no other commentary. This translation uses the word 'fear'

The Catholic BIble translation is completely different. It says 'Let all kinds of submission to one another become obedience to Christ.' The commentary goes on to say that "whether one partner makes a decision or follows it, neither will feel superior or inferior since the ideal is for both to 'make oneself slave' ".

One thing I really like about the Catholic Bible is in the introductions, where it says, under 'How to avoid misunderstanding the Bible' Do not thing you are the first to understand God's message and that there were no true Christians before you. This would be the way to become a founder of another strange sect.

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ladyaudley

I think the whole concept of submitting to one another here is to promote humility; if neither person feels superior to the other and strives to show that, then there will be humility, which is one of the most important Christian values ( and one that most fundies lack).

"reverence" is "fear of God" in the KJV and other translations. This ties in with Proverbs 22:4: "With humility and the fear of the Lord come riches and honor and life." as well as 1 Peter 5:5 " Likewise, ye younger, submit yourselves unto the elder. Yea, all of you be subject one to another, and be clothed with humility: for God resisteth the proud, and giveth grace to the humble." That has the younger people submitting to the elders bit, but also ties together the idea of submission and humility.

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FJismyheadship

By the way, I am on my computer, but the website won't let me get out of mobile mode.

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anniebgood

For a slightly different view, check out Augsburg's Lutheran Study Bible. It's the ELCA version. There is also a LCMS Study Bible. I don't know how much different they are.

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2xx1xy1JD
Of course John MacArthur says there's a transition between verse 21 and the rest of the paragraph. He's a strident gender complementarian (Christianese for "women are second-class citizens"), and verse 21 contradicts their philosophy. It's the same way I'd heard that section taught for years, until last November.

The church my kids and I were visiting was teaching through Ephesians, and the pastor explained how verse 21, "submit to one another," was actually framing the rest of the section. So the emphasis is actually on believers submitting to one another - regardless of gender. I was still so brainwashed by the MacArthur-style interpretation that I was glad my husband wasn't with us, because he'd write the church off, and I was really wanting to make it home.

Eleven months later, husband is on his way to becoming Ex, and kids and I are joyfully attending that church full time.

Ephesians 5:21 has to be directly connected to Ephesians 5:22. The word "submit" doesn't actually appear in the Greek text of Ephesians 5:22 - it's just inferred from Ephesians 5:21.

What I also take from this is that the whole teaching is about Christians being submissive in general. There is no corresponding instruction to lead or dominate.

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Curious
Quick question: why is MacArthur asking what Paul thinks when Ephesians wasn't, as most scholars think, written by Paul? There are a number of philosophical differences between letters we know Paul wrote and Ephesians (is physical resurrection coming in the future vs. past spiritual resurrection in Christ) and the Greek is written in ways that aren't characteristic of Paul. (I have to take Ehrman at his word here- I can't read Greek)

This matters since Paul's view on women in the stuff we know he wrote is actually fairly progressive. Women were prominent in the early Jesus movement and Paul treats them well, going so far as calling Junia an apostle. But 1 Timothy, home of the classic "I do not permit a woman to teach or to have authority over a man." was almost certainly a forgery.

As far as the verse itself, I think you have done some disfavor to it by removing the surrounding verses. Depending on how you emphasize those, you can get quite different meanings. Amusingly, I just looked it up online and there's a big break between 21 and 22, with a section heading "Wives and Husbands" stuck in the middle in the ESV. That doesn't exist in the original Greek- there's no breaks at all in anything. The KJV doesn't include it. Other translations have different headings in different places and the verse scans differently with and without that break.

I'd like to think Christians would take it to mean, in the words of Bill and Ted, "Be excellent to each other"

I finally had a chance to have my husband lug this ginormous book into my office for me. It's so big, I can't carry it and walk at the same time ;) So here is what MacArthur says in the chapter notes stuff about the author and date of Ephesians:

There is not indication that the authorship of Paul should be in question. He is indicated as author in the opening salutation (1:1, 3:1). The letter was written from prison in Rome (Ac 28:16-31) sometime between A.D. 60-62 and is, therefore, often referred to as a prison epistle (along with Philippians, Collossians and Philemon).

He goes on a bit more about the the author/date and has a section about background/setting and historical/theological themes as well.

He also has a section called Interpretive Challenges for each book. This is what he says about Ephesians, which I, personally, find interesting due to some of the twists and leaps fundies make trying to make it say what THEY want it to say vs just reading the plain language of the verses.

The general theology of Ephesians is direct and unambiguous, presenting no ideas or interpretations whose meanings are seriously contended. There are, however, some texts that require careful thought to rightly interpret, namely: 1) 2:8, in which one must decide if the salvation or the faith is the gift, 2) 4:5, in which the type of baptism must be discerned; and 3) 4:8, in it's relationship to Ps 68:18.

For those of us that aren't as familiar with the Bible as others, here are what Ephesians 1:1 is:

Paul, an apostle of Christ Jesus by the will of God to God's holy people in Ephesus, the faithful in Jesus Christ

3:1 is:

For this reason I, Paul, the prisoner of Christ Jesus for the sake of you Gentiles --

In this book there is a heading which says Instructions for Christian Households above 5:21 and includes up to 6:9, which is why I felt comfortable talking about 5:21 on it's own, but considering it within the larger body of the verses.

The way it is described in this book, which I'm not claiming is the one and only authority by any means, it's just the book I used for this post, is that 5:21 describes how ALL Christians should act with each other and then 5:22 gets into specifics of marriage starting with wives, 5:25 starts husbands. I think this is interesting, there seems to be three verses for wives (5:22-5:24), but there seem to be NINE verses for husbands 5:25-5:33. That's not how you'd think it is if you listen to the fundies tell the tale is it?

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Curious
Oh Curious, I wasn't criticizing you, I was whining about JM. :embarrassed:

He's wildly influential in evangelical Christianity, is considered very mainstream among evangelicals. He, like so many of them, comes across as saying the right things, but when you dig he's a mysogynistic, anti-mental health (very much a MOAR BIBLE approach), Calvinist know-it-all. The only reason I know what I do is because I've been in evangelical Christianity for about 17 years, and have listened to enough of his radio shows to have heard all of these things many times. I loathed him long before I started moving out of the complementarian flavor of evangelicalism.

I really didn't mean to make you feel badly. I'm sorry! I just REALLY dislike John MacArthur!

I didn't think you were criticizing me per se :) I just wanted to explain where I was coming from because I am FAR from a biblical expert and perfectly willing to admit that I am pretty much flying by the seat of my pants here.

Quite honestly, I have never had much interest in the bible, even being raised Catholic, it was never something I was particularly interested in. I was something I did because my parents made me and the first chance I got to get out, I did. I did try exploring other religions a little bit as a teen because I was curious about how they differed from Catholicism, but as you can imagine that went over like a lead balloon with my cradle Catholic father and was HEAVILY discouraged.

Watching fundies twist the bible and watching folks here match them verse to verse is really what has made me want to look into mainly the verses the people we follow routinely use and discuss them here because we have such a smart, diverse group.

I hadn't really intended to start this series of posts quite yet, as I wanted to do a little more research, but no one can push me into action like Ken and Lori ;)

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FundieFarmer
The way it is described in this book, which I'm not claiming is the one and only authority by any means, it's just the book I used for this post, is that 5:21 describes how ALL Christians should act with each other and then 5:22 gets into specifics of marriage starting with wives, 5:25 starts husbands. I think this is interesting, there seems to be three verses for wives (5:22-5:24), but there seem to be NINE verses for husbands 5:25-5:33. That's not how you'd think it is if you listen to the fundies tell the tale is it?

It's interesting that we bring this up here on FJ just as my own family comes into this discussion ourselves. I'm sure to the chagrin of many FJers, I say that I err on the side of conservatism and belong to a very conservative denomination of Presbyterianism-I am satisfied with it, I love it, and it has done a world of good for me. If I sound more orthodox, it is because that is the denomination I have chosen for myself. If that's not your jam, that's cool too! No judgment here. Rest assured, though--unlike many of these Fundie women, I have drawn boundaries for myself and they are clear to my SO and everyone around me, when the situation arises. And from that, I can say that a reigning trend I have noticed among fundamentalists is the ability to glaze over the responsibilities of the husband in the face of the submission of the wife.

Women aren't just supposed to lie down and take it, however you want to look at that, because there should never, ever be a situation where that becomes a recourse of action. Husbands are supposed to love their wives the way they love the church, which is a high and holy, sacred being, deserving of the utmost dedication and respect. If a man loved his wife the way he loved the church, it would be sacrificial, humble, serving, and full of awe and reverence. He would help her, be there for her, support her, and share in her burdens, whatever they may be. Within salvation, Paul notes, there is neither "male nor female"- so within the church, there is not "man's work" or "woman's work" in the traditional sense. All believers chip in wherever needed, as children in the body of Christ. Can we then say that Fundie men truly love their wives as they love the church? I would argue that we cannot.

(I'm probably not the very best at articulating this, but here's my shot. If it's not clear, holler at your girl and I'll switch it up.) Women aren't supposed to be slaves, or permanent nannies, or repressed, or anything that the women of the fundamentalist churches appear to be. Sure, there's glory (to hear the Bible tell it!) in caring for children and maintaining a house, but that isn't all you are. A help to your husband, and a support, yes: but realistically, that is common-sense relationship advice that wasn't intended to oppress, but rather to counsel on a healthy relationship. Beyond being a potential wife, every woman has talents and skills that elevate her past such a lifestyle, and she deserves to be praised for and to utilize those skills, no matter what they may be. We don't see that in the Fundie world, though you will in a healthy church. And despite Timothy 2:12, women aren't intended to be silent, either. The verse arose because women were speaking out pugnaciously in the church setting, and were causing problems. In the same vein as the verses re: jewelry/fancy dress/braids, it's not necessarily literal as it is an admonishment for taking away from the purity of worship. Because of the context at the time, the verse's original stance has never been about beating down women or oppressing them, but rather to say, "Hey. Cut it out. You're distracting from what we're doing here. Church is a place to worship God, not NYFW 2014 for you to attract all the men in the world." That isn't to say that women are called never to lead or speak, but within settings where it is appropriate (aka, not about men's issues at a men's breakfast), and does not cause discord. Again, common sense stuff.

I think that much of the Bible was meant to be just that when looked at for the forest instead of the trees-common sense answers to problems at the time that can still be applicable today. But I believe that Fundies see trees where regular Christians look at the forest. Fundies also have an incredible ability to apply a singular verse at a singular time making it a god of its own, ignoring other verses that apply to the same subject or refusing to view them in conjunction. Another example: having eleventy children so you can have extra arrows, when another verse mentions being able to completely care for your wife and children. If you can't provide, don't have eleventy children! Again, forest > trees.

I'm happy to answer any questions anyone might have about how such a conservative stance works out in today's world, provided the conversation stays friendly and respectful :)

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Curious

It's interesting that we bring this up here on FJ just as my own family comes into this discussion ourselves. I'm sure to the chagrin of many FJers, I say that I err on the side of conservatism and belong to a very conservative denomination of Presbyterianism-I am satisfied with it, I love it, and it has done a world of good for me. If I sound more orthodox, it is because that is the denomination I have chosen for myself. If that's not your jam, that's cool too! No judgment here. Rest assured, though--unlike many of these Fundie women, I have drawn boundaries for myself and they are clear to my SO and everyone around me, when the situation arises. And from that, I can say that a reigning trend I have noticed among fundamentalists is the ability to glaze over the responsibilities of the husband in the face of the submission of the wife.

Women aren't just supposed to lie down and take it, however you want to look at that, because there should never, ever be a situation where that becomes a recourse of action. Husbands are supposed to love their wives the way they love the church, which is a high and holy, sacred being, deserving of the utmost dedication and respect. If a man loved his wife the way he loved the church, it would be sacrificial, humble, serving, and full of awe and reverence. He would help her, be there for her, support her, and share in her burdens, whatever they may be. Within salvation, Paul notes, there is neither "male nor female"- so within the church, there is not "man's work" or "woman's work" in the traditional sense. All believers chip in wherever needed, as children in the body of Christ. Can we then say that Fundie men truly love their wives as they love the church? I would argue that we cannot.

(I'm probably not the very best at articulating this, but here's my shot. If it's not clear, holler at your girl and I'll switch it up.) Women aren't supposed to be slaves, or permanent nannies, or repressed, or anything that the women of the fundamentalist churches appear to be. Sure, there's glory (to hear the Bible tell it!) in caring for children and maintaining a house, but that isn't all you are. A help to your husband, and a support, yes: but realistically, that is common-sense relationship advice that wasn't intended to oppress, but rather to counsel on a healthy relationship. Beyond being a potential wife, every woman has talents and skills that elevate her past such a lifestyle, and she deserves to be praised for and to utilize those skills, no matter what they may be. We don't see that in the Fundie world, though you will in a healthy church. And despite Timothy 2:12, women aren't intended to be silent, either. The verse arose because women were speaking out pugnaciously in the church setting, and were causing problems. In the same vein as the verses re: jewelry/fancy dress/braids, it's not necessarily literal as it is an admonishment for taking away from the purity of worship. Because of the context at the time, the verse's original stance has never been about beating down women or oppressing them, but rather to say, "Hey. Cut it out. You're distracting from what we're doing here. Church is a place to worship God, not NYFW 2014 for you to attract all the men in the world." That isn't to say that women are called never to lead or speak, but within settings where it is appropriate (aka, not about men's issues at a men's breakfast), and does not cause discord. Again, common sense stuff.

I think that much of the Bible was meant to be just that when looked at for the forest instead of the trees-common sense answers to problems at the time that can still be applicable today. But I believe that Fundies see trees where regular Christians look at the forest. Fundies also have an incredible ability to apply a singular verse at a singular time making it a god of its own, ignoring other verses that apply to the same subject or refusing to view them in conjunction. Another example: having eleventy children so you can have extra arrows, when another verse mentions being able to completely care for your wife and children. If you can't provide, don't have eleventy children! Again, forest > trees.

I'm happy to answer any questions anyone might have about how such a conservative stance works out in today's world, provided the conversation stays friendly and respectful :)

Welcome Fundiefarmer! I think your posts makes a lot of sense and since I've read SO (so so so) much about these particular verses recently, I think your take on them is pretty much spot on.

I got a chance to visit a bookstore yesterday and looked through a bunch of different study bibles, after realizing it wasn't really practical to have to keep checking ones out from the library. I settled on a KJV one (naturally!) ;)

I particularly like the discussion it has regarding the comparison of the military model to marriage.

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proverbial1

I believe that there are scriptures that support the idea of mutual submission in marriage. However, I definitely think that egalitarians rely too heavily on Eph 5:21 as support for mutual submission without adequately including other verses that also support and illustrate the concept. On the other hand, comps tend to focus exclusively on the "wives submit" without engaging or considering other verses that support and/or illustrate mutual submission in marriage.

Loriken says, "The Bible is black and white." I can agree with that. To a certain degree, some verses can be black and white. However, Paul told Timothy (a much younger minister in training) to "do your best to present yourself to God as one approved, a worker who does not need to be ashamed and who correctly handles the word of truth (2 Tim 2:15)." Therefore, things are not always simply black and white, and scripture needs to be correctly handled, explained and taught, and that will often require more than simple black and white thinking.

Additional verses that support and illustrate mutual submission:

If you need wisdom, ask our generous God, and he will give it to you. He will not rebuke you for asking. James 1:5

The beginning of wisdom is this: Get wisdom. Though it cost all you have, get understanding. Pr 4:7

The Bible teaches that wisdom is a virtue that BOTH men and women should acquire. In other words, wisdom isn't just for wives seeking to be like the Pr 31 woman.

A wise man will listen and increase in learning, And a man of understanding will acquire wise counsel. Pr1:5

A wise man is he who listens to counsel. Pr 12:15

Listen to advice and accept instruction, and in the end you will be wise. Pr 19:20

According to the lexicon, one of the definitions or synonyms for listen (shama 8085) is "to obey, be obedient." In other words, listening (8085) is something everyone should do. Therefore, husbands should listen (8085 obey) the wisdom of their wives when necessary, and there are examples of that in the Bible.

http://biblehub.com/hebrew/8085.htm

A virtuous wife "speaks with wisdom, and faithful instruction is on her tongue." Pr 31:26

Abraham listened to the wisdom of his wife.

But God said to him, "Do not be so distressed about the boy and your slave woman. LISTEN (8085 obey) to whatever Sarah tells you, because it is through Isaac that your offspring will be reckoned" (Gen 21:12). That's very important because people like Loriken love to quote:

"Wives, in the same way submit yourselves to your own husbands (1 Peter 3:1) like Sarah, who obeyed Abraham and called him her lord. You are her daughters if you do what is right and do not give way to fear (v. 6)." However, they totally leave out Gen 21:12 where GOD TOLD Abraham to obey Sarah. Loriken would probably have a conniption before they ever acknowledged that verse in "black and white." Ken would likely post one of his notorious walls of texts in an effort to refute and trivialize the fact that GOD TOLD Abraham to obey Sarah. All of a sudden, it wouldn't be so black and white anymore.

Hannah's husband submitted to the vow that she made to the Lord (1 Sam 1:11, 21-23). This is especially relevant since an OT husband could lawfully cancel a vow made by his wife (Numbers 30:13). Hannah's husband didn't do that. Instead, he listened to the wisdom of his wife.

Xerxes listened to Esther's plea about reversing Haman's order to destroy the Jews (Es 8:5, 9:13). This is significant because after the king had signed and sealed a decree or given his permission for a decree to be signed and sealed, it was not to be repealed or revoked (Es1:19, Es 3:9-12). However, Xerxes listened to the wisdom of his wife and revoked the decree to kill the Jews.

Nabal was a foolish man and husband. Proverbs really sheds light on that by listing the traits of a foolish person for us (Pr 23:9, Pr 1:7). The way Nabal treated his wife, Abigail, is a stark contrast to the way David treated Abigail. Unlike Nabal, David acknowledged and affirmed Abigail's wisdom and her capacity to " speak with wisdom, and faithful instruction." Pr 31:26, 1 Sam 25:24-34

A virtuous wife can "teach" and "instruct" her husband when necessary, and a wise husband will listen to her counsel. Likewise, a virtuous wife will submit and listen to her husband. It goes both ways, and that's what mutual submission in a healthy, Christ-centered marriage is all about.

Suggested reading:

http://godswordtowomen.org/krupp.htm

http://godswordtowomen.org/boss.htm

https://godswordtowomen.wordpress.com/t ... yed-sarah/

http://www.godswordtowomen.org/lesson_39.htm

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Curious
I believe that there are scriptures that support the idea of mutual submission in marriage. However, I definitely think that egalitarians rely too heavily on Eph 5:21 as support for mutual submission without adequately including other verses that also support and illustrate the concept. On the other hand, comps tend to focus exclusively on the "wives submit" without engaging or considering other verses that support and/or illustrate mutual submission in marriage.

Loriken says, "The Bible is black and white." I can agree with that. To a certain degree, some verses can be black and white. However, Paul told Timothy (a much younger minister in training) to "do your best to present yourself to God as one approved, a worker who does not need to be ashamed and who correctly handles the word of truth (2 Tim 2:15)." Therefore, things are not always simply black and white, and scripture needs to be correctly handled, explained and taught, and that will often require more than simple black and white thinking.

Additional verses that support and illustrate mutual submission:

If you need wisdom, ask our generous God, and he will give it to you. He will not rebuke you for asking. James 1:5

The beginning of wisdom is this: Get wisdom. Though it cost all you have, get understanding. Pr 4:7

The Bible teaches that wisdom is a virtue that BOTH men and women should acquire. In other words, wisdom isn't just for wives seeking to be like the Pr 31 woman.

A wise man will listen and increase in learning, And a man of understanding will acquire wise counsel. Pr1:5

A wise man is he who listens to counsel. Pr 12:15

Listen to advice and accept instruction, and in the end you will be wise. Pr 19:20

According to the lexicon, one of the definitions or synonyms for listen (shama 8085) is "to obey, be obedient." In other words, listening (8085) is something everyone should do. Therefore, husbands should listen (8085 obey) the wisdom of their wives when necessary, and there are examples of that in the Bible.

http://biblehub.com/hebrew/8085.htm

A virtuous wife "speaks with wisdom, and faithful instruction is on her tongue." Pr 31:26

Abraham listened to the wisdom of his wife.

But God said to him, "Do not be so distressed about the boy and your slave woman. LISTEN (8085 obey) to whatever Sarah tells you, because it is through Isaac that your offspring will be reckoned" (Gen 21:12). That's very important because people like Loriken love to quote:

"Wives, in the same way submit yourselves to your own husbands (1 Peter 3:1) like Sarah, who obeyed Abraham and called him her lord. You are her daughters if you do what is right and do not give way to fear (v. 6)." However, they totally leave out Gen 21:12 where GOD TOLD Abraham to obey Sarah. Loriken would probably have a conniption before they ever acknowledged that verse in "black and white." Ken would likely post one of his notorious walls of texts in an effort to refute and trivialize the fact that GOD TOLD Abraham to obey Sarah. All of a sudden, it wouldn't be so black and white anymore.

Hannah's husband submitted to the vow that she made to the Lord (1 Sam 1:11, 21-23). This is especially relevant since an OT husband could lawfully cancel a vow made by his wife (Numbers 30:13). Hannah's husband didn't do that. Instead, he listened to the wisdom of his wife.

Xerxes listened to Esther's plea about reversing Haman's order to destroy the Jews (Es 8:5, 9:13). This is significant because after the king had signed and sealed a decree or given his permission for a decree to be signed and sealed, it was not to be repealed or revoked (Es1:19, Es 3:9-12). However, Xerxes listened to the wisdom of his wife and revoked the decree to kill the Jews.

Nabal was a foolish man and husband. Proverbs really sheds light on that by listing the traits of a foolish person for us (Pr 23:9, Pr 1:7). The way Nabal treated his wife, Abigail, is a stark contrast to the way David treated Abigail. Unlike Nabal, David acknowledged and affirmed Abigail's wisdom and her capacity to " speak with wisdom, and faithful instruction." Pr 31:26, 1 Sam 25:24-34

A virtuous wife can "teach" and "instruct" her husband when necessary, and a wise husband will listen to her counsel. Likewise, a virtuous wife will submit and listen to her husband. It goes both ways, and that's what mutual submission in a healthy, Christ-centered marriage is all about.

Suggested reading:

http://godswordtowomen.org/krupp.htm

http://godswordtowomen.org/boss.htm

https://godswordtowomen.wordpress.com/t ... yed-sarah/

http://www.godswordtowomen.org/lesson_39.htm

Thanks for chiming in and for the suggested reading list! I'm going to check out those links today.

I noticed that at some point Kenori said that (paraphrasing) the OT was moot. If I'm not mistaken, Proverbs is in the OT, though. I'm not quite sure how they get around that disconnect. Since I don't live by their rules, I am going to add that verse from Genesis to my list of ones for the bible study posts, I think.

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proverbial1

I'm not sure how they get around that either because the idea that the OT is moot isn't true according to the Apostle Paul who actually wrote a very large portion of the NT.

Paul said, "All Scripture is God-breathed and is useful for teaching, rebuking, correcting and training in righteousness, so that the servant of God may be thoroughly equipped for every good work (2 Tim 3:16)."

Last time I checked, Proverbs and the rest of the OT were part of "All Scripture." However, it's not surprising that Loriken would say or suggest that because they do live by their own rules, and they make a lot of it up as they go along. A lot of what they say is either extra-Biblical or cherry picked. They select only the verses that support their particular agenda while excluding other relevant verses on a a particular subject matter. They don't have a very holistic approach to Bible study, and that flies in the face of what Paul told Timothy about "All Scripture" in 2 Tim 3:16. So, there's really no disconnect. The OT and the NT are both interconnected.

It's very telling that Loriken would say or suggest that the OT is moot when the description of the OT Proverbs 31 woman and the OT Proverbs about a nagging wife are so central to their theology. So, OT Proverbs are fine and more than acceptable as long as they address female behavior. However, when one studies or uses some of the OT Proverbs to address male behavior, all of a sudden, the OT is moot. Classic cherry picking and classic Loriken. None of that lines up with what Paul taught in 2 Tim 3:16 about "All Scripture."

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FundieFarmer

Thanks for the welcome, Curious!! Very glad to be here :) thanks for getting us started!

I so agree, proverbial1. If we threw out the Old Testament, then we throw out the prophesies regarding the coming of Jesus. In that event, we discard our means of identifying Him as God's son, and have nothing to go on but the acts He performed while here, which then become simply miraculous rather than indicative of His holiness. We would also be throwing out Job (so no more fundie arguments about withstanding suffering as Job did!) and, as proverbial1 mentioned, Proverbs 31. We would have no basis for Creationism and none of the Ten Commandments. With the argument that the Bible is inerrant and infallible, it means the whole Bible- not just a certain testament. Again, the fundies with their trees over the whole forest. It is a slippery slope to toss out some of the Bible, and keep other bits!

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