Frank and Beatrice, Keely and DN

I think the comment I left responding to Dontbia Nass’ most recent harangue is worth highlighting (could it be that people don’t find my words sufficiently compelling that they decline to hang on to every post and the comments that follow? The mind boggles . . . ). In a comment on “Die, Patriarchy, Die!,” he defends all sorts of ideas and doctrines about gender relations. Here’s my answer to his comment:

DN (who evidently has a great deal of free time on his hands), regarding women’s Biblical submission and men’s charge to love their wives, writes:

“There are no mirror-image verses for the husbands.”

Well, yeah, there are. The verse in Ephesians 5 that he and other patriarchs rely on is preceded by an admonition for ALL IN CHRIST to submit cheerfully one to another. I believe that the problem in the Church is too little submission, not too much, and that the deference and sacrifice Christ’s people are to offer one another in love ought to make a comeback; it’s been absent for far too long, or, more accurately one-sided for far too long.

Further, he makes the very odd application that the Ephesians 5:22 woman will “submit” to her husband, while he, in the same passage, will “love” his wife — with no reciprocity, no mutuality. She has her job, he has his. Yikes.

Let’s imagine the bizarre scenario in which a Christian thinking like DN would counsel a married couple:

“Hey, Frank — Love your wife.”

“Beatrice, submit to your husband.”

“Frank, you can ignore 5:21, which requires mutual submission with no qualifiers. Just love her. Forget the idea of submitting to her.”

“Beatrice, you’re off the hook. No need to love your man. Whew! Just submit. See, he loves, but doesn’t submit. You submit, but you’re not called to love.”

“Now, be careful that you both stick to your own stuff here, and we’ll see you at Doug Wilson’s upcoming conference on Father Hunger. Oh, wait — Beatrice, darling, it isn’t for you.”

(Fade to Doctrinal Confusion . . . )

I would suggest that Beatrice and Frank would leave with the matrimonial harmony parts of their brains more than a little muddled.

On another note, Adam is the father of the human race because he was created first. As we see with, say, Jacob and Esau, birth order doesn’t guarantee primacy in God’s plan. Heck, his plan doesn’t even require much faith, never mind a penis. And Adam was not given a headship role over Eve in creation. Both were given the stewardship mandate. His sin was to defy a direct command of God’s, not to listen to his wife, and no amount of appeal to creation order will change the reality of a loving, mutual, co-equal Adam and Eve in the Garden pre-fall.

Finally, Jesus’ obedience to the Father in the Incarnation is clear. It is not at all clear that the Trinity is a center of anything other than complete, mutual, self-giving, self-realized, voluntary, loving, co-equal submission and love. The idea of the Father “parenting” the Son in the Trinity, or exercising a “boss” position therein, is repugnant.

Really, DN, I’d like to move on. I think my readers kind of get that we disagree, and surely you have other things with which to occupy yourself. Perhaps you have a blog on which I can comment?

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