Review of Children’s Book, “God’s Design” -Examples of Godly Womanhood

Ruth, Mary, Sarah and Proverbs 31: Examples of Complementarian Women

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-by Kathi

This series is a review of God’s Design, a children’s book which teaches children about complementarity. For an introduction of the book, click here. All of the underlined subtitles below are chapters from the book.

Today, young girls have the chance to learn what makes a godly woman. I know you all were thinking hard about who the examples might possibly be. Now’s the time to find out!

Ruth, an Example of Womanhood

I do love the story of Ruth and I can understand why she was chosen as an example. However, there’s a part of Ruth’s story that I appreciate that is never spoken of in this chapter.

Ruth is described as a companion, a hard worker and a provider. I would agree with this assessment. (Pssst….Kind of sounds like a complementarian man, doesn’t it?) Boaz notices how hard Ruth works and has heard of her loyalty to Naomi, so he decides to help her out. Boaz sees Ruth as a “worthy woman – a godly woman who loves God and would be a helper and companion.”

And here’s where the authors veer off course to talk about Boaz. Boaz is an example of biblical manhood because he was a “leader who took responsibility for Ruth” and he wanted to solve her problems. I think Boaz is a stand-up guy, but come on! The boys already have Paul and Jesus as their example, let’s keep focusing on the women for once! Oh, and women are absolutely capable of solving their own problems, thank you very much!

The point that I think the authors miss is that Ruth and Naomi knew what they were doing. It was hard being a widow in ancient times, needless to say a foreign widow in a country that typically would despise her type. Ruth needed to marry someone who could take care of both of them, so with Naomi’s guidance a plan was set into action. Naomi goes so far as to suggest that Ruth pretty herself up, go to the threshing floor after harvest, wait until Boaz is passed out from eating and drinking, and offer herself to him. Ruth goes, but slightly changes the plan.

Naomi tells Ruth that when Boaz notices her to do what he tells her. However, when Boaz notices her, she tells him, “Spread the corner of your garment over me, since you are a guardian-redeemer of our family.” (Ruth 3:9, NIV) Ruth broke protocol by entering the threshing floor and she dictating to Boaz what he should do. She most likely put her life at risk by calling the shots, but Boaz, being the upstanding man that he was, went along with her plan.

This brilliant plan led Ruth the Moabite to become the grandmother of King David and in the genealogy of Jesus. She is one of five women mentioned in Matthew’s account, and for a very good reason.

Mary and Sarah, Examples of Womanhood

Mary, the mother of Jesus shares a chapter with Sarah. I’m a little disappointed because I really thought she would get an entire chapter dedicated to herself.

Which leads to Mary’s disappointment — “a very big disappointment.” Yes, I’m assuming that the authors mean that Mary was disappointed to be illegitimately pregnant. And, yes, they confirm that by saying, “Mary knew God’s Word says only married people should have babies.” And here’s where I work very hard at holding my tongue because I want to yell, “@#%*!”

First of all, the authors do not provide any verses in reference to Mary knew that “only married people should have babies.” Yes, there is a law against premarital sex (Deuteronomy 22:28-29), however this verse refers to rape. And, there is a law that a “bastard” may not enter the house of God (Deuteronomy 23:2). However, the original Hebrew of this word is mamzer which means “a child of incest.” This adds a whole new point of view to this word.

Did the authors even stop to consider the meaning behind what they were saying that Mary was “disappointed” about being pregnant and not married? And, believe me, I totally understand the inference. Yes, unmarried pregnant women were looked upon with shame. There were laws that if a young unmarried woman was pregnant she could be stoned outside her father’s house. I would venture to guess that Mary was scared for her life, not disappointed.

Perhaps the authors have forgotten Mary’s song in Luke 1:46-55 where she says,

My soul glorifies the Lord and my spirit rejoices in God my savior, for he has been mindful of the humble state of his servant. From now on all generations will call me Blessed, for the Mighty One has done great things for me – holy is his name. (NIV)

Does this sound like a disappointed person? Please, authors, stop projecting yourselves on to ancient people. For goodness sake little girls, if you become pregnant and are not married, don’t think of yourself or your child as a great disappointment. You are both created and loved by God!

Then we move on to Sarah. Sarah is described as a woman who trusted God. She also had a “gentle and quiet spirit” (based upon 1 Peter 3:4-6) and we are told that a woman like this “does not insist on her own way and is not pushy and demanding.” She called her husband “lord” which meant that she respected and honored Abraham’s decisions. While women don’t call their husbands “lord” today, we are told that “they can speak with respect, honor his decisions, want to please their husbands, and teach their children to respect their father.”

Do you think Sarah had a choice when Abraham, because he was afraid, decided to deceive Pharoah and say that Sarah was his sister? Is this how you want little girls to respect their husbands? By following along with their deceptive plans? Was Sarah pushy and demanding when she gave Hagar to Abraham to sleep with to get a child? She didn’t even trust God when she was told that she would have a child in her old age; she laughed! I’m left to wonder how a woman who lived thousands of years ago can be the example of a complementarian woman for today.

Wrong Thinking About Womanhood

This is one godly woman that I’m sure you didn’t even consider when we were trying to guess who would be our examples….the Proverbs 31 woman! Yes, of course!

The chapter breaks apart different verses in Proverbs and offers different aspects of “God’s idea of womanhood.”

Verses 10-12: A godly wife is more precious than diamonds. He trusts her and knows that she has abilities and appreciates her. He may trust her, but does she need to defer to him in every decision or is she free to make her own decisions?

Verses 13, 16, 24 and 27: A godly woman is a cheerful and hard worker. She isn’t lazy. She makes good decisions and acts upon her ideas. This reminds me of Lori Alexander.

Verses 17, 21 and 25: A godly woman has a “different kind of strength.” She does what is right, trusts God and does not fear. Does this go against acting upon her good ideas?

Verses 20 and 26: A godly woman takes care of her family and is kind and compassionate to others. “She has money and things to share.” What if her husband is not on board with sharing their things?

Verses 28 and 29: A godly woman is “better than the rest.” In fact, a “true” woman is “worth more than the Hope Diamond!” A “true woman” — I really dislike that statement.

I get the feeling that Christian women take Proverbs 31 way more seriously than Jewish women. Proverbs 31 seems to be read more like a “to do” list. Sites such as A Virtuous Woman and Proverbs 31 Ministries offer resources for living a virtuous godly life. Christian women speak and blog about how to live like a Proverbs 31 woman. However, in Jewish culture Eishet Chayill (woman of valor), is a poem that is sung at the Shabbat table to praise all Jewish women.

For without woman – no matter her ability or talent – where would we be today?

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If you would like to read prior reviews on God’s Design, here are links in the order of the book chapters:

Know Thyself, Creature

Headship, Helper, and an Answer We Already Knew

Rebellion, a.k.a. It’s All Her Fault!

Teachings on Homosexuality as a Distortion of God’s Design

Examples of Complementarian Manhood and More Doublespeak

photo credit: Dietmar Temps Madagascar, beautiful girl via photopin (license)

47 comments on “Review of Children’s Book, “God’s Design” -Examples of Godly Womanhood

  1. Read between the lines: SUBMIT to the man-god, no matter what, and pick one who has more muscles than brains and who tells you what to do and how to feel.

    This book, frankly, is top rated trash and indoctrination at its best, and for the enlightened authors (who think they have secret knowledge, known as extra-biblical nonsense, that no one else has) to even suggest that Mary was “disappointed” is typical of those in that movement. They want to make you feel like a worm; they want you to feel worthless; they want you to live in bonds and chains, so as to keep you in bondage. I know and have known many single Christian women who have had babies…and God loves them just the same. The authors’ continual extra-biblical brilliance is nauseating, condemning, condescending, and plainly anti-Christian.

    Kathi, I have re-read Mary’s song: She was jubilant, blessed, happy, and even hurried to visit Elizabeth who was expecting John the Baptist. What a silly thing to do for someone who was disappointed. Mary was carrying the Savior, God in the flesh, the Lamb who would take away the sins of the world. I’d have been jubilant too.

    Now that same Jesus whom Mary carried and delivered set us free through his death and resurrection, so there’s no more condemnation for those who are in Christ, something the authors cannot and won’t understand. Their livelihood depends on it, be assured of that.

    This book is trying to (but failing because of SSB and other wide awake people) to mold women in the authors’ twisted design, image, and twisted beliefs. And they start their abominable brainwashing very early. So. Clever. As cults and the like do…no difference.

    Thanks again, Kathi, for a fine article. You and Julie Anne are examples of fine Godly women, and I thank God for that. Jesus Christ should be our prime example, be we male or female.

    Blessings, Kathi

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  2. Thanks, Boston Lady. I neglected to mention in that section that they imply that women who are pregnant and are not married are a disappointment. They don’t come right out and say it, but the tone is there. Imagine some little girl hearing that, meeting a woman who is not married and pregnant asking her, “Are you disappointed?” Haven’t women been shamed over this for long enough?

    I worked with young pregnant women in a maternity home for a while and they came in with plenty of problems. Child abuse, intimate partner abuse, homelessness, drug abuse, and low self-esteem. At least one girl was as young as 13. By the time they left the home, whether they kept the baby or adopted out, their self-esteem, self-confidence, and most times reunification with families was brought back into their lives. Why not step alongside a young pregnant woman and help her through this time in her life? Help her become stronger so she can confidently raise a young child. Why continue the shaming?

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  3. Indeed, Kathi. I get what they actually imply just too well. The Christian thing to do is to help those who are pregnant (hee haw, how many pastors’ daughters and sons have had this happen to them? Were they cast aside? Abandoned? Shamed?) And eventually, through our love and care and because we are new creations in Jesus, these young people will come to realize that they have made a mistake, because we are all still human. And of course, we are not promoting having illegitimate children, not at all. But “mistake” or not, the child and the mother remain precious souls, loved by God, and Jesus died for them as much as He died and rose for you and me. We are no better than they are; if we think that, we should seriously reconsider on whether we are saved ourselves!

    But the best news is that being a single mom CANNOT keep you out of heaven or separate you from God, no matter what man says. Nor can it keep your precious baby from heaven.

    Yes, it’s a cliche, from an old song (my brother used to play this over and over…and over. I can’t remember the band though, but the words linger):

    “because the heart that you break
    that’s the one that you rely on
    the bed that you make
    that’s the one you gotta lie on
    when you point your finger cos your plan fell through
    you got three more fingers pointing back at you.”

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  4. They always have to weave their own biases throughout the text. Mary disappointed, what bunk. It is better to just read the Bible straight than to read “Christian books” most of the time because of the way these personal opinions slip into the narrative. They have taken 3-dimensional human beings and turned them into insipid 2 dimensional stereotypes. It’s so much better to read the book and see how each person and event fits into the whole than to pick something out here and there and build an ideology out of it.

    And the Proverbs woman… how does she fit the comp stereotype? This is a powerful woman, able to make her own decisions, run her own business, handle her finances, employ servants… She does her husband good because that is what people who love one another do. She is an idealized poetic picture and often a source of impossible expectations put on normal, everyday women, and of cognitive dissonance as we are pressed to warp her character into a comp mindset. Were Mary and Ruth “Proverbs 31 women”?

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  5. ps When I say ‘it is better to read the book’ I mean the Bible- read it as a book, reading through the story from beginning to end. Picking out a sentence here and there will never give the real picture.

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  6. It sounds as though the authors are trying to re-cast some of the women of the Bible as 1950s June Cleaver house wives.

    Did they mention women such as Deborah, who was a judge and military leader for Israel? Or Jael, who drove a tent peg through the head of a sleeping enemy?

    I’m over 40 years old, a lady, never married, never had a kid – do the authors acknowledge that being single, childless, child free and a life time celibate are all also also a “godly option” for women?

    (And sometimes life doesn’t turn out how we planned. I always thought I’d get married, but I never came across a Mr. Right.)

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  7. I am reminded that when we had the examples of men, girls were encouraged to memorize Titus 2:6-8 because it is important for them to understand what godly manhood looks like. However, in these three chapters, boys are not encouraged to memorize any verses to understand what godly womanhood looks like.

    Also, there is an activity in the Ruth chapter that asks: “Boys: What are some good qualities a boy should encourage in girls he knows?”

    I really can’t make this stuff up. Because I never would!

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  8. @Kathi:

    Also, there is an activity in the Ruth chapter that asks: “Boys: What are some good qualities a boy should encourage in girls he knows?”

    Maybe this schoolyard dirty rhyme from my grade-school days in the 1960s?
    “Close yo’ eyes
    And spread yo’ legs
    So Ah can fertilize yo’ eggs.”
    (Bart Simpson Syndrome… when you’re 12 years old and male, anything gross and/or disgusting is hilarious.)

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  9. Also, there is an activity in the Ruth chapter that asks: “Boys: What are some good qualities a boy should encourage in girls he knows?”

    “Encourage”? How, exactly, is a boy supposed to “encourage” qualities in girls (presumably those his own age) in the first place? With flattery? Criticism? Threats of lifelong spinsterhood, or maybe even damnation for failing to live up to “God’s Standard of Womanhood™”?

    Boys being encouraged to mould girls into their own ideal brides… I think I just threw up in my mouth a little.

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  10. I think I just threw up in my mouth a little.

    Yes, super creepy. And almost as bad an idea as telling teenage girls they should submit to teenage boys! No way that can go wrong at all.

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  11. One quibble with the evaluation; Boaz is not likely “passed out” from drinking, as the Scripture merely says he was “merry” (good heart, literally), not “drunk”, and when he wakes up and sees her, he responds coherently. Can’t do that if a few hours earlier, you were at .25% BAC or so. Plus, threshing is not the kind of work I’d like to do hung over. Ouch. Loud, hot, dry, and you’re already dehydrated.

    (the boys were stinky from work, not wine, would be my guess)

    Boaz a stand up guy? Sure, but Ruth 3:10 indicates that he was probably a middle aged guy, probably widowed, who was astounded to find a pretty young woman at his feet asking to marry him. So Ruth is showing incredible respect for her deceased husband and her new religion by asking to be redeemed by a “dumpy stinky middle aged guy” who can raise up sons for the deceased husband, instead of doing what a lot of widows would have done–find some handsome young man whose children will be counted as his own. And she does it as a Moabitess who was probably a pagan not that long before.

    And Proverbs 31? Let’s just say that’s the passage that comes to mind when I hear people arguing that women ought not work outside the home.

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  12. Speaking of Christians and their love of gender stereotyping. I spotted this on “Stuff Christian Culture Likes” Facebook page:
    _3 Unique Leadership Challenges in Ministry to Men_
    (it’s a link to some Christian guy’s blog post)

    Summary of his blog post’s points:

    1. Men do not want to fail.
    2. Men do not have a felt need to gather.
    3. Men are extremely busy.

    As if, women are none of those things or have none of those qualities?

    As to point 1. Does the guy behind this page think women want to fail?

    Regarding Point 2. As someone who is an extreme introvert (and I’m a woman), I do not have a “strong felt need to gather.” I actually avoid “gathering together” with people most of the time.

    That’s not to say I want to be a total hermit. Sometimes, I do need to be around or with people and talk to them, but no, I don’t have some huge, feminine need to always be with a group of people.

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  13. Sarah, and Abraham, were thoroughly human. They did some things right, a lot of things wrong, but the thing that they are really commended for is their faith – a flawed, faltering faith, but that’s all that is needed. Sarah’s life is complex, and I think that Peter was talking about a specific point in Sarah’s life in I Peter 3:6, not her entire story. Sarah is recorded as calling Abraham ‘lord’ once, when the Lord and the two angels came to visit Abraham (Genesis 18). In the story, Abraham runs and asks Sarah to quickly bake three cakes, and later on, as Sarah listens to the Lord’s message, she laughs and says “After I have become old, will I have pleasure, my lord being old also?” Peter seems to be using the phrase “calling him lord” in his epistle to recall that point in Sarah’s life, which is the point at which she believed God and had faith that she would have Isaac (Hebrews 11:11), rather than to suggest married women should generally address their husbands with honorific titles. Sarah, who was the wife of a wealthy nomad, is hardly the type of wife that the patriarchal movement would like. After all, what about that time God told Abraham to listen to Sarah (when she wanted to send Hagar and Ishmael away)?

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  14. roscuro, you beat me to that point! Yes, Sarah calling Abraham “Lord” was a sign of her faith and willingness to try one more time to make the promised baby. She did not submit to Abraham’s “sin” of calling her a sister, because there was no sin in this. Pharaoh and Abimelech stole her as a bride. They were guilty of bride theft as evidenced by their extravagant gifts to the wronged party: Abraham. https://kbonikowsky.wordpress.com/2016/11/17/women-in-the-text-sarahs-submissive-reputation/

    This children’s book is ridiculous propaganda for a false gospel.

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  15. Bike Bubba – I agree with you on everything. Yes, I think Boaz was a stand up guy because he did everything the right way. He made sure Naomi and Ruth were taken care of according to their custom – even exceedingly beyond their custom. Ruth does show great respect for her mother-in-law, for Boaz and for her new home land. Amazingly, she played a major part in making all of that happen.

    roscuro – My point about Sarah is that she is portrayed as a godly woman of faith who had total trust in God. Sarah did provide a concubine to Abraham so that they could have a child and then sent her and the child off where they almost died. Sarah did laugh at being told she would have a child in her old age – honestly, I would too! Sarah was just like everyone else and didn’t always have total trust in God, yet that is how she is portrayed to children. She is portrayed that way because the authors choose to focus on a couple of stories and paint her as the perfect submissive wife.

    kbonikowsky – They were guilty of bride theft because Abraham presented his wife to them as his sister. If this is how the story actually happened, then I’m left to think that Abraham cares more about taking care of himself than what the Pharoah may do to his wife. Not to mention sending down the wrath of God on unsuspecting people. I’m glad he wasn’t an example of complementarian manhood.

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  16. Just wait ’til these little boys and their subordinates read the rest of the stories! ~~~~~
    Mary was an unwed mother.
    Sarah married her half brother, followed his instructions to be arm candy for a pharaoh, and insisted that her hubby/brother fool around and make a baby with a slave girl.
    That man-chasing Ruth caught the son of a Canaanite harlot. (That harlot is also included in the lineage of Jesus.)

    And their two models for the boyz to follow are ……. virgins? (Not knockin’ Jesus, here. Just sayin’ the idiots who wrote this book are, well, idiots.)

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  17. Avid Reader,

    Thanks for liking my rants, which, by the way, come from my heart, and which are not written while I am shaking with utter disbelief after I’ve just read the junk that the authors (of this book, for example) had concocted and dreamed up. Nancy2 (above) calls the “authors” (indoctrinators, I reckon) what I guess they are in the bigger scheme of things.

    In the end, we are here to support and share, most of us being victims, some in more ways than one. And sometimes, it hurts to support and to share. And that’s why I am so grateful for this particular site. Sure, we may have theological differences (which we are free to discuss elsewhere), but our pain is the same.

    Blessings to you, Avid Reader.

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  18. And their two models for the boyz to follow are ……. virgins? (Not knockin’ Jesus, here. Just sayin’ the idiots who wrote this book are, well, idiots.

    I’m surprised they didn’t use David, everybody’s favor goto guy for ‘whoops i cheated on my wife again but it’s ok cause David’.

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  19. Kathi,

    I so appreciate your work here regarding the penned books designed to teach young ladies what they should be/become according to the ways of men. It is shocking and confusing all at the same time how, various tentacles of religion regard the existence of women, more often than not, abusing God’s Holy Word using it as a prison for women.

    I was not familiar with Lori Alexander and made a visit to her site. I was completely broken, with every fiber of my being, over her posts and her ignorance concerning God’s Word. I cried tears of great sadness and remorse for the chains of bondage she is creating for women; may our LORD have mercy upon her. She is adding more souls to the chain gang of women who truly desire to follow Jesus and His Ways rather than the traditions of man.

    What is organized religion that poses as Christianity afraid of? It seems to me, that the harlot church system is growing more and more afraid of women, calling anything a woman does/her successes/her joys/her love for her LORD-King Jesus and the giftings the Holy Ghost has freely bestowed upon her, labeling things such as these as “feminist and ungodly.”

    So then, my witnessing a “woman” sharing the glorious Gospel of Jesus Christ to a drunkard in front of a small town gas station, is a terrible and horrible tragedy; for it was a “woman” ministering the life saving Good News to a sinner?

    Aghast! How can this be! And she wasn’t wearing a skirt, she didn’t have long hair, didn’t have the male gender as her covering, nor was she quiet about sharing the love of Jesus with that lost man, giving him a Bible for the taking to read and study.
    Oh, how dare her……she didn’t give him a penned book on God’s Design (?) for women…..but a Bible no less. Oh, how glorious and wonderful to know that women can share the Gospel, equally with men!

    Oh, how glorious it is, how sweet it is, when I meditate upon those Holy Scriptures that say, “there is neither male nor female, neither Jew nor Gentile when it comes to Jesus Christ.” One day, when we are in the presence of our King, I often wonder how His hierarchy will be as He is seated at the throne, perhaps the greatest on this earth will be the least, and the least on this earth will be the greatest in His Coming Kingdom. Gender won’t be His issue.

    To date, I haven’t seen one woman truck driver wearing a skirt. Glory Alleluia!

    Julie Anne, please, please delete if my comment here if I fell off the cliff/the deep end. I do have a difficult time trying to understand how man and woman kind are putting men and women “in a box” so to speak, especially when Jesus my LORD, did nothing but encourage women in their faith in Him alone. Growing up on the farm (both genders pitched manure, walked bean fields, picked rocks, drove tractors/equipment, fed the livestock, etc.), I struggling to understand the mindset behind the man/woman thing. When there was a job to be done, like right now, Mom could give us kids marching orders just as good as Dad, for the main goal was “getting the job done! Period!”

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  20. “I’m surprised they didn’t use David, everybody’s favor goto guy for ‘whoops i cheated on my wife again but it’s ok cause David’.”

    Exactly. OT characters are not good examples to trot out concerning character, integrity, honesty, ethics, morality but the pastors love to do just that. As if their bad fruit is to be expected in leaders.

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  21. Thank-you for bearing with me folks, I didn’t learn this gender stuff growing up in a small conservative assembly, for it wasn’t an issue like it is in these times. The Gospel was of primary importance and no one cared whether it was male or female sharing it!

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  22. lydia00,

    Yes, you are correct! I have heard that very same excuse verbalized within a conservative Baptist church, espoused by men and women ‘complementarians’ and ‘Focus on the Family’ types and shadows.

    “It’s okay for David to commit adultery and murder because you know, he made a mistake, but he was in the lineage of Jesus and a king no less, so no stone throwing there at his sins. He repented and made all things right with God.”

    Yet, David did suffer the consequences of his personal sins, did he not? I believe Scriptures confirm this.

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  23. Katy, you are doing everything but falling off the cliff; you are simply beginning to see (although I think you might have suspected before) the bigger picture of something ugly. Besides, your comments are gems and genuine.

    And, Katy, the gospel from the mouth of a woman (or even a child, male or female) is just as valid and powerful, end of story! Any person is able to respond to the Gospel, no matter who shares it! The truth matters, not who tells it. We are all in this mission field together. God will not turn someone away from Heaven because that person was saved after hearing the Gospel from a woman. Heaven would be practically empty then, believe me!

    Katy, you share the Gospel with whoever you come across; that’s beautiful and pleasing to our God. There is no law against it; let no one tell you otherwise, as he/she would be lying. Like you said, “There’s a job to be done.”

    No, we are not “bearing” with you; we don’t need to; we accept you, Katy. God bless!

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  24. Katy, I did not grow up with it either. I am stunned at how much of it is out there from many different facets of society. Some think women are better than men or men are better than women. It’s about individuals. Not gender.

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  25. Katy – You are fine! I, too, did not grow up hearing that there were God ordained gender roles – which, looking back surprises me given that I grew up in the Bible belt. However, I did run into this thought when I was in college as a ministry student. It was then that I learned that churches don’t take too kindly to women being pastors.

    I really started understanding it when I was homeschooling and became aware of this teaching in a lot of Christian homeschooling curriculum. Our family was already so far beyond that so we skipped those parts! But, I now have a greater understanding for the Lori Alexander types and I see it more and more often. I guess I never saw it before because I never looked for it.

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  26. “I’m surprised they didn’t use David, everybody’s favor goto guy for ‘whoops i cheated on my wife again but it’s ok cause David’.”

    David’s a hard one, but to be blunt about the matter, I don’t see too many guys saying that they ought to suffer David’s implicit punishment for his sin; the deaths of four of his sons, the first son by Bathsheba, Amnon, Absalom, and Adonijah.

    Would be interesting to know more about the faith of David’s wives, really. I suspect that Michal was an idolater (she hid an idol/statue to spare David, mocked his dancing before the Ark), but the Word really doesn’t say much about them.

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  27. You lost me at “David’s wives”. 🙈

    I’m glad Christians haven’t tried to role play this one out yet. Haha

    Exception: those weirdos in Utah and the M.E.

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  28. My “comp” former pastor even highlighted two things – when Sarah says Abraham should send Hagar away, God agrees with her, even though Abraham was hesitant. Also, what Ruth does to Boaz, he claims is nothing short of a marriage proposal.

    So, one bastion of comp womanhood overrule their husband (God sides with the woman, not the man), and the other one proposes marriage.

    No wonder they have to go to Prov 31 when there aren’t enough “good” examples.

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  29. FYI:

    Now Sarah saw the son of Hagar the Egyptian, whom she had borne to Abraham, mocking. Therefore she said to Abraham, “Drive out this maid and her son, for the son of this maid shall not be an heir with my son Isaac.” The matter distressed Abraham greatly because of his son. But God said to Abraham, “Do not be distressed because of the lad and your maid; whatever Sarah tells you, listen to her, for through Isaac your descendants shall be named.

    Also:

    When Boaz had eaten and drunk and his heart was merry, he went to lie down at the end of the heap of grain; and she came secretly, and uncovered his feet and lay down. It happened in the middle of the night that the man was startled and bent forward; and behold, a woman was lying at his feet. He said, “Who are you?” And she answered, “I am Ruth your maid. So spread your covering over your maid, for you are a close relative.”

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  30. The Proverbs 31 woman always sounds like a corporate CEO to me.

    –Buying land
    –Import/export
    –Having a staff
    –Manufacturing
    –Bragging several times about her strong arms.
    –Husband says that she’s better than other women.
    –Look at the last verse…even her product line praises her.

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  31. Kathi,
    So thankful you bypassed the gender issues with your family; it makes for more helpful and compassionate children in benefitting others as well as themselves. I believe you are doing the right thing for your family. God bless you!

    I find it interesting how comp theology becomes a major issue within academia, especially within the ranks of Christian higher learning. It’s amazing they allowed young women the privilege of attending their institution to receive a higher education in bettering themselves, making sure the “women” know their place in society. Incredible.

    Because comp theology has become such an issue within visible Christianity during these post modern times, it makes me wonder how Christian families ever survived in the past, not hearing this kind of slough muck. Didn’t they know back then that they were supposed to be listening and following these lofty preacher men who twist the Holy Scriptures to advance their little kingdoms…..selling their books, their dvd’s, their t-shirts and pants (sarcasm here), and their conferences for big bucks. Gotta have a theme to attract the mammon!

    And yet, God’s Ekklesia, the Body of Christ, survived without the instructional comp teaching, to me, still seems fear based on the part of the male theological system. I ask myself over and over again because I just can’t wrap my mind around this comp concept, “What in the world are religious men afraid of.” Could the soul source of such theology really stem from “pride?” I seriously believe so.

    Boston Lady, Yes! Yes! Yes! Man, woman or child can share the life saving Gospel; you are so right! Thanks for that great reminder! YES!

    lydia00, I’m glad you didn’t grow up with comp confusion either. It makes for a very divisive and reviling group of religious folks, as I am finding out with the Focus on the Family idolaters in my area.

    Leave it to man to keep comp lies alive, as well as the false teachings of racism within the visible church. It’s quicksand teaching and preaching as far as I’m concerned, and does more harm than good to families who love and serve our LORD Jesus, Who realistically, seems to care more about souls, than gender or man-made racial issues.

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  32. Salty, agreed on the “wives” thing. The only sense I can make of it is that if a man had more than one wife, he likely had an alternative when wife #1 was post-partum, or when the monthly visitor came. Hebrews were at least supposed to abstain from relations for a week after menses. Otherwise a man got to take a lot of cold baths, so to speak.

    Mark Twain, when he was in Salt Lake City, was asked what Biblical passage prohibited polygamy. His answer was “Matthew 6:24: no man can serve two masters.” Certainly in David and Solomon’s case, caring for the physical needs of multiple wives seems to have prevented them from reaching them, and their children, for God, so Twain isn’t as off as we might think.

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  33. lydia00, I’m glad you didn’t grow up with comp confusion either. It makes for a very divisive and reviling group of religious folks, as I am finding out with the Focus on the Family idolaters in my area.”

    It’s silly. How many people do you know who are anti family? How many people do we know marry with the intention of divorcing? In that world I saw motives assigned to people that were unfair. There are serious problems with abuse and neglect the church tends to ignore and even affirms in the name of comp.

    In the OT, the divorce occurred when neglect took place. The wrong treatment/behavior was the cause of divorce.

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  34. Kathy, my post on Sarah was in agreement with you.

    Yeah, about Abraham’s lie concerning Sarah, I’m not sure that the accounts show that Abraham was in any way justified to lie. Both Pharaoh and Abimelech seem outraged that Abraham had assumed they would have taken Sarah if they had known she was his wife. When God warns Abimelech that he has taken Abraham’s wife, Abimelech pleads that he had taken her in complete innocence, and God replies that he knew Abimelech had acted in innocence which is why he prevented Abimelech from committing adultery. Abimelech basically scolds both Abraham and Sarah for their deception. The fact that Isaac lied about the same thing with even less justification – no one took Rebekah away from him and she was his cousin – would indicate that Abraham and Isaac were just scared. Yes, they lived in wild times, so some of that is understandable, but I think that God deliberately used their stories and others in the Bible to show just how gracious he can be, that he can even forgive and use cowardly liars. I’m sure the apostle Peter must have been comforted when he considered their stories.

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  35. I am going to start a firestorm and say that i don’t believe we should be as excited about people having children out of wedlock. God is specific that he does not endorse formication, and it is not the best for kids to be raised by a single parent. Also, as far as our public services go, we spend most of the money on people who have out-of-wedlock children. The schools have free babysitting and no programs for the gifted who will be the ones to help society as a whole. We give these people food stamps, free housing, tax returns without paying, babysitting if they need it, and free medical care. What do the gifted kids get? A college debt. And in the church we expect people to celebrate an out-of-wedlock birth with a shower and gifts and the same enthusiasm we do for a married couple having a child. We tell our kids by our actions that we don’t mind if they sleep around for fun and don’t accept the responsibility after they do it.

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  36. @Kathy:

    kbonikowsky – They were guilty of bride theft because Abraham presented his wife to them as his sister. If this is how the story actually happened, then I’m left to think that Abraham cares more about taking care of himself than what the Pharoah may do to his wife.

    Subversive wisdom of ha-Torah — here we’re shown where Abraham screwed up.

    Though I have heard an interpretation where this was a misunderstanding between Egyptian and Semitic Tribal cultures. Among Semitic tribes and their kinship heirarchy, a Sister outranked a mere Wife so a husband who thought highly of his wife would raise her status by also adopting her as his sister. This being a point of pride to Semitic tribesmen, he would have stressed this to foreigners of importance. Like Pharoah.

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  37. @BikeBubba:

    Certainly in David and Solomon’s case, caring for the physical needs of multiple wives seems to have prevented them from reaching them, and their children, for God, so Twain isn’t as off as we might think.

    More Subversive Wisdom of ha-Tanakh.

    Polygamy for the rich and privileged (harem polygyny, actually) was Normal; coming straight out against it was Crazy Talk which would get blown off immediately. So you go at it indirectly, by chronicling and stressing the dark/downside of it.

    Similar to ha-Torah regulating Honor Killings and Slavery, which were also Normal; regulating them so tightly they became impractical. (Not that everyone who wanted to didn’t look for, find, and create loopholes so they could do it anyway, but the Prophets had a lot to say about that…)

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  38. @Lydia00:

    How many people do we know marry with the intention of divorcing?

    I HAVE heard of it happening, but I understand it is VERY rare. Usually a gold-digger playing the “Divorce for Fun and Profit” con. In USENET days, there was even an alt group called “My Ex Husband Is My Slave” about how to do it; I understand most of the postings were bitching about how No Man Wants to Commit. (I mean, you’ve just telegraphed what you’re planning to do over the Net, i.e. take him for everything he’s got and brag about it — ALL IN PUBLIC; WTF did you expect?)

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  39. @Lydia00:

    Exactly. OT characters are not good examples to trot out concerning character, integrity, honesty, ethics, morality but the pastors love to do just that. As if their bad fruit is to be expected in leaders.

    Ask the Rabbis about these OT characters. I suspect a lot of the bad-fruit stories are there originally as examples of “What NOT To Do”.

    But “Men of Sin” will glom onto any Cosmic-level authority– even sacred stories of What Not To Do — as Cosmic-level justification for What I Wanna Do. “GOD SAITH! IT’S IN HIS WORD!”

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  40. @HUG – I truly think that we don’t have all of the story. We’re talking about stories of ancient people at a time when information was passed down by oral retelling. But, those who read Genesis as literal interpretation will not be able to look beyond what’s in writing.

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  41. Irene, I’m not sure the current state of the welfare system, but in its early days, the amount of money you received was based on a calculated need. Women in that system were paid more for each child, based on that need, and were paid more if they were unwed.

    There’s some anecdotal evidence that this had a significant negative impact on those living in poverty – that they were having more children than they could handle to receive greater income, and that children grew up with a distant or non-existent father figure. Some fathers apparently lived with the family as much as possible, only to disappear when the social worker came around.

    I don’t know what the system is now, but it is still horribly broken. PA Department of Public Welfare released a chart that shows one of the big problems: (sorry the only copy I found was here) http://www.zerohedge.com/sites/default/files/images/user5/imageroot/2012/11-2/welfare%20cliff.jpg

    The chart basically shows the effect of the welfare cliffs – that a single mom making $29,000 won’t want to receive a raise, because making $1k more, she would lose $15k in public assistance. Charts like this make you wonder if the point of the welfare system is to trap people in poverty rather than to help people get out…

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  42. Pingback: Review of Children’s Book, “God’s Design” – Purity and Honoring God’s Design | Spiritual Sounding Board

  43. Pingback: Review of Children’s Book “God’s Design” – Married/Single; Husband/ Father; Wife/Mother | Spiritual Sounding Board

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