Book Review Series, Children Desiring God, Christian Marriage, Council for Bibl. Manhood & Womanhood, Desiring God, Doctrine as Idol, Extra-Biblical Nonsense, Gender Roles, God's Design for the Family, John Piper, Women and the Church

Vaccinating Children with Complementarian: Series Introduction – Review of “God’s Design” Gender Role Book for Children

Complementarian, Egalitarian, Teaching Children, Children Desiring God, John Piper

Series Introduction

Vaccinating Children with Complementarianism

by Kathi

Owen God's Design
The SSB Watch Dog  gives “4 Paws Down” for this book.

I spent many years reading books to my children. Homeschooling families know all too well the importance of reading. However, I can say that I never read a book like this to my kids.

God’s Design is a children’s books which teaches about the importance of  gender roles.

Oh, yes. You read that correctly.

About the Organization and Authors

God’s Design is written by Sally Michael and Gary Steward. It is published by P & R Publishing and sponsored through Children Desiring God. I purchased my copy through Amazon. Research and benefiting my charity of choice made this purchase a little bit easier to swallow. Here is some information about the authors from the back cover:

Sally Michaels is the cofounder, curriculum author, and publishing consultant of Children Desiring God. She is also an author, speaker, and former Minister for Children at Bethlehem Baptist Church in Minneapolis.

Gary Steward is an assistant professor of history at Colorado Christian University. Previously he served as pastor of Calvary Baptist Church in St. John’s, Newfoundland, Canada.


A couple of things stand out in these bios. First is the name, Children Desiring God. Does that sound familiar in any way? A simple Google search brought this up:

Screenshot 2016-08-05 at 9.30.02 PM




Yes, Children Desiring God is linked to Desiring God website. Desiring God’s year end 2014 statement has them listed as a ministry partner (or is it an extension of Desiring God? Either way, they are linked together.). Children Desiring God offers Sunday School curriculum, homeschool curriculum, books, seminars and an annual conference. Sounds like Children Desiring God runs about the same as Desiring God, only it’s solely geared toward children.

This leads me to my second stand out in the bios….who do you immediately think of when you hear Desiring God? It is no wonder that Sally Michaels is writing for Children Desiring God when she served at Bethlehem Baptist along side John Piper for 10 years (Sally’s husband, Michael, served for 20 years). What I want to know is how Sally managed to earn and maintain the coveted Minister title while working under John Piper’s leadership. Gary Steward also spent three years under John Piper’s tutelage and has contributed curriculum for Children Desiring God.

About the Book

God’s Design is roughly 100 pages long and consists of 26 short story chapters. Follow-up questions and activities are provided to ensure that children grasp the concepts in the lessons. The main purpose of this book is to build a theological foundation for “biblical manhood and womanhood” in children.

The preface offers more:

Now more than ever parents need to talk with their children in age-appropriate ways about God’s good design for manhood and womanhood. Parents also need to talk with their children concerning how many ideas about manhood and womanhood – egalitarianism, feminism, homosexuality, gender blending/bending – go against the beautiful design of gender complementarity.


Children need to understand, before their teenage years, how God created men and women to be equal in personhood, dignity, and worth, and yet different regarding the roles He designed them to have.

We find many of the familiar catch phrases here. First there is the idea that egalitarianism and feminism go against the Bible. This is a hill to die on and for the life of me, I really do not understand why. All I can determine is that the last great stand for men to retain total power is in the home and in the church. I can understand why some Christians struggle with accepting homosexuality, but the reality is that God loves all people, and we should too. I find it fascinating how the theology of complementarity can be so focused on homosexuality. We must remember, though, that it is the view of biblical marriage which homosexuality threatens.

The other familiar catch phrase that is found in this part of the preface is how God created “men and women to be equal in personhood, dignity, and worth, and yet different regarding the roles he Designed them to have.” Different but equal. When will these folks ever learn that those who are “different” will never feel “equal” as long as this mentality is in place?

Continuing in the preface:

Hopefully this book can serve as a springboard for further interaction between parents and children, not just about manhood and womanhood, but about God and the gospel . May the Lord bless you as you inoculate your children against the Devil’s lies by speaking truth from God’s Word, and may your children grow up to be godly men and women who spread the light of the gospel and live out God’s design for men and women in a dark and needy world.

This book is about God and the gospel. THEIR gospel. That’s the problem with where complementarianism is at this point and time. It has become a primary doctrine issue and has become their gospel. The gospel is merely proclaiming the death, burial and resurrection of Jesus and the eternal hope we have in Him alone. I often wonder if God looks down on these churches and leaders and is thinking that they have lost their first love.

But it’s this golden phrase that has me worried the most about this book: “May the Lord bless you as you inoculate your children against the Devil’s lies…” Oh, Lord, may we vaccinate our children against the evil lies of equality and women’s rights! This book may be damaged from being thrown across the room too many times.

About the Series

This series will consist of reviewing 2-3 chapters of God’s Design at a time. The goal is to post at least once a week. Given that summer is winding down quickly, we still have company coming to visit at some point within the next two months, and school will be starting back up, I may have to go a little longer in between. But, I will try to keep pauses short so that we don’t lose track in discussion.

Why am I doing this series? It’s not easy for me to hide my disdain for complementarity. I think that organizations such as Desiring God and CBMW have gone too far in convincing people that this is not one way of looking at marriage, gender roles, and roles in the church. It is the way. The gospel way. I think that their insistence on this issue is damaging and binds the freedom that we have in Christ. I hope you will find it informative to see what people embedded in the complementarian camp are using to vaccinate impressionable young minds.

426 thoughts on “Vaccinating Children with Complementarian: Series Introduction – Review of “God’s Design” Gender Role Book for Children”

  1. Wilson type followers

    I’ve been thinking whenever someone randomly brings up Doug Wilson (of all people!) in the middle of a completely unrelated argument that its some kind of tell.

    Liked by 1 person

  2. I am picking up on a pattern here. KAS has some of the distinctives I picked up on when reading Doug Wilsons blog comments years ago.

    Good catch, Lydia. KAS might have picked the right time to stop talking. I think you’re starting to figure him/her out.


  3. KAS said: “It is, for example, almost impossible to tell to what extent Douglas Wilson made mistakes in his pastoral care due to the very obvious personal dislike of him by his critics.”

    With GOD watching us, who cares about critics? If Wilson is loving abusers and excommunicating the abused because he wants to silence the critics, isn’t he getting his reward?

    Wilson is just falling into the Pharisaical trap. Victims are messy and Abusers are not. The priest and levite walked by the injured Jew for that very reason. Abusers can fake repentance when it gets them what they want – restoration to ‘good boy’ status. Oops I made a mistake, show me grace. Nothing has really changed for the abuser, while the victim’s entire life has turned upside down.


  4. I have skimmed over quite a number of posts, but I’m having a hard time following the conversation, especially the posts by Kas.

    (I’m not sure if Kas is a man or a woman, since I’ve seen other commentators refer to Kas as “he” and as “she”.)

    Kas’ posts contain much verbiage but don’t really seem to communicate anything, like a certain tele-evangelist I catch from time to time.

    The preacher guy to whom I allude has a 30 minute show daily on Christian TV but manages to do a lot of talking without conveying much of anything.

    After having read several of Kas’ posts, I’m not sure what he’s getting at, except maybe he wants people to talk more kindly about guys like Piper when they are critiquing Piper’s theology.

    This stood out to me:
    Kas said,

    The way not to do it is ad hominum attacks and uncontrolled anger, allowing subjective emotions free rein. The kind of speech I alluded to earlier

    Oh no no no no.

    I do not appreciate anyone dictating, lecturing me, or shaming me into repressing my emotions or insisting I must express my emotions in bounds of their whims and preferences (depending on the context).

    I spent my entire life with a family who even now shame and scold me into repressing my emotions.
    They get ticked off and verbally abusive if I go to talk to them about how I am feeling, or if they find out I’ve been doing so with other people.

    I was brought up being taught junk such as the following:
    ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~
    1. My feelings do not matter.
    (But other people’s feelings matter. So if others hurt MY feelings, it does not matter. My feelings are of no consequence, after all)

    I am not permitted to show anger
    (per my mother who thought it inappropriate for nice, ladylike Christian girls to get angry or show anger)
    I am not permitted, per my father and other family, to show or admit to feeling other negative emotions (such as fear, loneliness, doubt, sadness) because that is shameful.
    According to my father and certain other family, I am to act like a Robot, not a human being who has a heart and emotions.
    ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~

    Even now into my adulthood, a smattering of certain aunts / uncles of mine, as well as my father and older sister, shame me or scream at me not to go around sharing my personal dirty laundry with other people (e.g, getting vulnerable with others, going to them asking for emotional support, crying in front of others, admitting I am undergoing a stressful time, etc).

    I don’t go for this any more.
    I am sick and tired of anyone telling me my feelings do not matter,
    that it’s “wrong” for me to express emotion X, Y, or Z (or if I do express X, Y, or Z, I must express said emotions in a manner they find acceptable).

    I don’t like it when people try to “Emotion Police” me.
    I was Emotion Policed my whole life by family and shamed for having or showing emotions, or to admitting to feeling sad, angry, scared, etc.

    I will feel what I want to feel or what I happen to feel, and within the bounds of blog rules (here or whatever other blog), express it accordingly.


  5. Mark quoted Kas as saying,

    KAS said: “It is, for example, almost impossible to tell to what extent Douglas Wilson made mistakes in his pastoral care due to the very obvious personal dislike of him by his critics.”

    Why does Kas assume this has to be mutually exclusive?

    A person can think Wilson is an obnoxious, “flaming- posterior- hole,” convey that sentiment in a post ~AND~ also (calmly and politely) critique the man’s horrid theology and sexism, too.


  6. “Piper had cancer not so very long ago I believe, and I think it possible this has affected his brain. If this is the case, is it normally acceptable to call someone suffering in this way a ‘deranged idiot’?

    I have in no way defended his conduct – on the contrary, I do think he invites criticism. If he really is ill, such criticism needs to be tempered with compassion, and recognition that his responsibility for what he says is diminished by this as he is not in full possession of his faculties.” – KAS

    John Piper had prostate cancer ten years ago, a common form of cancer in men. He has been fine for many years and he is not ill.

    He is a bizarre man, with bizarre beliefs and teachings, irrespective of any health problems. If is is not competent to pastor (and he’s not), he should have recused himself years ago.

    I didn’t call Piper a “deranged idiot”. And if someone else did…it’s pretty accurate.


  7. Daisy, I read your comment and just feel like giving you a big hug.

    I understand your upbringing. Been there and feel like smashing walls as my parents still gaslight about their abusive behaviour.

    You seem like a real gem.


  8. Velour, I just have to watch Piper pray before his ‘sermon’ and compare it with Jesus’ rebuke about praying lofty words up the front (Matt 23).

    Jesus clearly identifies Pharisee behaviour.

    “Do as I say, not as I do”


  9. P.S. Has anyone seen the Sir Ken Robinson synopsis of our schools in “Ted Talks”; his talk was #1 if he hasn’t been kicked out of #1 status? Excellent!


  10. Daisy,
    Yes! Yes! and another yes and AMEN! How can one counsel another without emotions and desiring God’s justice? And how can those who claim to be “counselors” not empathize, nor sympathize with victims of any form of wrongdoing or abuse? Do not born again Christians have compassion for one another, or has Christianity stooped to the level of “desiring God with money, power, control, and prestige?”

    Are those who profess to be ‘Christian counselors’ more concerned about the money per hour they are making so as to live a luxurious lifestyle, and boasting of the number of people they are ‘ministering too,” or do they genuinely care about the souls/life situations of Jesus’ sheep?

    Thank-you Daisy for the publication referrals you mentioned on another comment thread. Patricia Evans, Bancroft Lundy, Susan Forward (Toxic In-Laws), Jeff Crippen, Barbara Roberts, and others’, books are a part of my cubbyhole library as I needed help during a pivotal time in my life. I NEEDED love, compassion, empathy, kindness, gentleness, patience, another words, ALL of the fruits of the Holy Spirit, during a major stressful and miserable time in my life when I was trying to sort out exactly what was happening to me. And to the ‘churches’ shame, it was not congregational members that offered counsel and support to me, but instead, our LORD sent “UNCHURCHED” believers in Jesus, the Christ, to love and support me.

    And currently, because of all of the abuse and neglect from the former church I belonged too, doors have been opened to minister to several women from that ‘complementarian, patriarchal’, oppressive religious system, where women are taught NOT to display any kind of human-like qualities!

    “Thou must serve, serve, serve woman, without emotion nor personality”….the mantra of an abusive religious system, wouldn’t you say? As man has free reign with his emotions, his words and his ways.

    Also, when I hear the word ‘mistake,’ I have to wonder if the word ‘sin’ wouldn’t be a more appropriate word to describe Doug Wilson’s cover-ups/wicked ways. In our comfortable, emotion-less lives, it seems as though the world of false Christianity loves to replace the word ‘sin,’ with ‘mistake, error, unintentional, mishap, ignorant’ and the like, with regards to pastors/leadership/important wealthy people within congregations, or those strong personalities who love to lord it over others due to their strong self important influence, ie, ‘church lady syndrome.’ Are pastors/leadership above ‘sinning, or is that especially reserved for us lower laity dogs/Samaritans?

    Regarding Piper and his piperettes; these people have been given far too much influence within the visible Christian culture and the ‘people love it so.’ His teachings have replaced Jesus’ teachings, thus becoming a replacement theology of sorts. Christianity in this country seems to be replacing Jesus’ teachings in our Scriptures with man’s teachings, at every whim, to accommodate the lifestyles of a people who do not care to read and study their Bibles for truth, allowing the Holy Spirit, to illuminate Christ’s Words/Ways?

    In my former abusive church system, the ‘prayer chain’ leader gave me a book by Larry Huck, of Trinity Broadcasting Network fame, that I was supposed to read as she thought in her own narcissistic mind, that I was unsaved when I first began attending their entertainment services. Like THOT, that book went immediately into the garbage pile in the back forty, and burnt quite well amongst the debris, unread by this saint, I might add. Again, ‘replacement theology’ was at work here.

    And Salty, I love your compassion for the people/commenters who post here, let your light shine! Praising the LORD here today, for the ministries of Daisy, Velour, Salty, Serving, Lea, lydia00, Lydia, Amos, and others on Julie Anne’s site, for this is how the Body of Jesus Christ encourages and edifies one another. Blessed be His Name.


  11. And also, forgive me, precious Brenda here has offered so much love and ‘counseling’ in her comments, giving me much wisdom to live by, because she has empathy and compassions for those who are hurting.

    God Bless you Brenda.


  12. “What caught my eye was vaccinating word because someone brought that up to me and I referred them to “Battle Hymn by John Scura/Dane Phillips agenda for curriculum in schools as well as vaccine agenda=SOBERING along with Plague by Judy Mikovits and Dr. James Wardner’s book-The Planned Destruction of America, Our Stolen Future by Theo Colburn. Matthew 7:13-14 comes to mind and a wow of a discussion. Has anyone seen film “Waiting for Superman” documentary film on schools (drop in the bucket). Contact Debbie Mendenhall and see if she will investigate and be an advocate once again on exposing corruption in school material!”


    Not sure I am fully understanding your comment but a few things sprang to mind.

    Last year The Battle Hymn of the Republic was excoriated by a few more liberal people on TWW as a horror. Not long after, I attended a public school concert with over a 1000 people in attendance. A very diverse situation with every ethnicity you can imagine. The concert ended with the Battle Hymn. The only people in that audience who jumped up with ovation were the African Americans. Others followed their lead.

    It got me to thinking how much that hymn must mean to them. It really helped me see it in a different light.

    Waiting for Superman was an excellent attempt by some brave liberal educators to lay out the problems in public education. It was no surprise to many of us that public education actually serves the educators and mostly the government administrators. But it went no where. This is a top down (Federal>state) problem that is going to take a major revolution of voters to say: no more with our money. Any candidate that touches it is guaranteed to be vilified by lies and stealth sabotage. We have allowed big government to turn our children into experimental units by faceless bureaucrats far away.

    I think the establishment is thrilled to turn out uneducated worker drones that look to DC for jobs and security.


  13. Daisy: KAS’ posts contain much verbiage but don’t really seem to communicate anything

    Too much verbiage eh?

    I love it. 🙂 🙂


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