Admittedly one section of the Bible angers me even more than the passage about submitting to authority. That’s Paul’s statement about the roles of women within a Christian household and church. Every time I read these passages, my heart rings in fury. I tend to be an individual passionately against the subjugation of another sometimes inferior human being. Seeing the Bible used as something that limits one’s ability to share God’s word or to reflect Jesus Christ greatly confounds me. Even more, are the number of gender constructs built as a means of safeguarding the church from homosexuals.
I’ve had many problems with the number of gender stereotypes prevalent within the church and society. Typically, a male shall possess great physique while a woman’s strength’s limited by their strong emotions. Hearing this from another man’s lips results in a great guffaw from myself. For how could only a woman have strong emotions resonating through their being. When some men, typically those who are artistic need that emotion for fodder for their own writing. The fear of homosexuality has caused many Christians to enforce these gender stereotypes as an affront to the surging of those admitting to having same sex feelings. For me, these stereotypes have caused me to suffer from harassment for most of my life. As response to being abused by men within my church and school, I’ve seeked women to be my friends. With God’s help, he has helped shape me into a man that sees beyond the archaic rift between men and women. I only see people with some anatomical differences who love the lord.
But the main question still remains, why are some churches so apprehensive of women leadership. The reasons are are purely nonsensical and seemed to be devised by some of the most staunch misogynistic Christians. Women are capable of being physically strong just as some men are capable of being physically strong through discipline and training. In the Bible, God has always utilized the self acclaimed weak human beings. Those who possessed a strong heart and not a strong body. Many within our society mistaken exterior strength as being the definer of one’s masculinity. But these people are absorbed by societal definitions and see not the great similarities between ourselves and women. God calls each of us to an individual calling and for some women that’s leadership. My challenge for men who are confining God by using Paul’s letters as fodder for limiting women is to the truth behind their reasoning. That the majority of reasons they have for not allowing women to hold clerical positions is because of the stereotypes that have become ingrained in their being.God someday shall allow us to see the fault we have in limiting anyone’s potential for their gender, race, or other societal definitions. We are not following God’s word but ascribing to comfortable societal stigmas which keep us safe. The Bible’s a book of liberation, not one of constraint to one’s abilities.