To start, I titled this post to grab attention. Obviously, if you’re reading this, it worked on you. I usually do not describe this reality as scriptural feminism as much as I do scriptural womanhood. I want to cover a wider scope of scriptures. Starting from Genesis, moving to Proverbs, then to Galatians and Corinthians, and ending on a reflection of the use of “heirs” in the new testament. (The heirs part might turn into a second post, but we’ll see)
In the beginning…God made it all, and it was awesome. Amazing. Astounding.
Along with these bits of amazing…Man and Woman. It’s funny to reflect on these things, since many tend to look at passages and say they prove woman is made under or at most complimentary to man. But this is where I begin to differ. There is an expression that describe woman in the hebrew (ezer kenegdo) that usually gets translated helpmate. The unfortunate truth is that it’s usually either to simple a translation or flat out wrong (for an indepth look at this, see this BAR article).
There is no simple way to put, except that it means “the power (entity) equal and opposite him.” This is funny, since the next verse interacts with the Ancient culture of woman under man…
Or so most tend to think.
A great Wife or Woman?
This part may contain a little of my bias in the interpretation, but I tend to interpret this 31:10-31 as referring to a woman and not a wife. Not that this is a book of wisdom.
Crucial note: By the time the Mishnah was developed, Wisdom, which was connected to the Torah, was constantly looked at as a Woman.
With that said, notice the high worth placed on this woman. The tendency to live out things that are the bigger ideas of what is in the Torah. Is this really about a wife who so happens to be doing things that seem to need a man present, or about a great woman that represents a gift from God. There is more here than meets the eye.
Notice what comes before it. A king is encouraged to act justly and rightly in the eyes of God…
‘Tis very peculiar. And maybe not so applicable when looking for a woman’s place in the Church structure.
(I know I might get some very legitimate critique of this view of the end of Proverbs, which I welcome, though I can’t say that convincing me will be too easy on this one. But I encourage you to give it a shot.)
Galatian and Corinthian Women.
The role of women
Don’t worry, I am not going to go into a full historical analysis. I will just stick to the text here. We already know that in Corinthians there seems to be a conflict of interests since the women seem to be suppressed and then given a sense of authority through prophecy. It seems so strange that Paul would contradict himself.
But I don’t think Paul is actually contradicting himself.
Take a look in Galatians 3:23-29. There is something He says. “There is no longer…male and female.” If you think about the list of things that are also eradicated in the kingdom in this list, it becomes clear that Christianity seeks to do away with the notion of one entity of the other (Jews better than Gentiles, Free better than Slave, and Man better than woman.” I do think that this is one example of the Word of God progressing towards something better,
Something we once had.
We were once great. And one day, we will see greatness returned to us, man and woman alike, if we accept it. I think you see what I mean.
Conclusion…To Be Continued…
I think the idea of heirs to the New Testament believers becomes evident. Although you may see that sons are heirs, Galatians 3 shows us that EVERYONE who follows God is an heir to a piece of the Kingdom.
And as I close…
yes, this is the last post on this subject…
I implore you to consider these things.
What are the real differences between the sexes?
What truly defines the Kingdom?
Should we always accept the social norms, or should we seek was to express Kingdom infiltration into the world we live in?
Grace and peace to you all.