The Recent Surge of The Feminist Movement & Its Threat to The Biblical Family
A couple of weeks ago, the world celebrated Father’s Day (Yay!) I had an amazing time with the fathers in my family – honoring them and acknowledging them on their special day – and I hadn’t set aside time to pay homage to all of the fathers of the world. But the love, respect, and admiration is so apparent. The older and wiser that I become, especially from a biblical standpoint, the more I appreciate the role of biblical manhood, fatherhood, and how we as women and wives complement their role perfectly. I am simply amazed by God and how His design from the very beginning was perfect – nothing broken and nothing missing. Since then, sin has tainted it, but it has never lost its value. So, as this post is written to honor the biblical family, specifically biblical manhood, you’ll find out quickly that it comes from a very different angle – staying true to biblical principles. (And if you aren’t already aware, I’m known for pushing the envelope a bit!)
First things first: The role of biblical manhood and fatherhood is a duty and responsibility designed specifically for a man that can never be replaced by a woman (Sorry single moms, as much as we respect all of your sacrifice and selfless dedication, you can’t replace a father). I need to highlight the significance of having true leadership present in our homes, in our churches, and in the workplace. I also want to highlight this significance while combating a movement that has sought to destroy the biblical family structure as a whole – feminism. Although feminism is only one of the man-made ideologies that has plagued us on a universal, societal, and communal level, it is strongly making its presence known and is an ideology that needs to be singled out, targeted, eradicated, and swiftly replaced with the truth of God’s Word. My hope is that through this blog post, we are able to scratch the surface on one of the most controversial subjects today, and provoke some discussion that happens to be long overdue.
Feminism has done quite a job of rearing its ugly head, and it is truly heartbreaking to see its many effects surrounding us everywhere we turn. At times, it is most noticeably seen through extreme feminist ideals – advocacy of ” gender equality and women’s rights” in the form of the pro-choice movement and the legalization of murder through abortion (which is a direct threat to the biblical family in relation to marriage, child-bearing, and the sovereignty of God in all of it); gay rights, the LGBT movement, and its current social tolerance (which is a direct threat to the sanctity of marriage between a man and a woman); female sexual liberation and exploitation, and the sense of control and power that women attempt to portray and possess through these means (which is a direct threat to biblical personhood of both the male and female, as well as God’s original purpose for sex – which is to be within a marriage covenant). These are a few of the extremes.
At other times, the presence of feminism in our world and in our lives is so subtle to the point where it almost goes unnoticed (I’ll mention some of those subtleties later). Satan knows better than to deceive us by always appearing as the liar that he is. The enemy loves to distract us from realizing just how much our worldly mindsets keep us from being all of who God has created us to be. He finds those subtle ways to seep into our thoughts and minds to keep us trapped in the web of deception. Let’s begin (and perhaps end) the discussion with the “independent woman” (I really only need this alone to prove my point and unravel the truth…)
There are so many layers of deception in this one feminist mindset alone, and it’s troubling. Within the independent woman phenomenon lies the notion that we as women are somehow exempt from submission to authority, whether it is God (inadvertently or deliberately), our boss and superiors, our Pastor, our husbands….you get the point. It is the notion that we can do everything just as good, if not better, than men. It is the notion that we as women can take care of ourselves, protect and provide, lead our homes and families on our own or with little help, lead our churches, hold down a job and the fort, etc., all better than a man. Please. First, we are not independent by any means. We are forever dependent on our Heavenly Father. We do not take care of ourselves; we are taken care of by Him. He provides for us in everything. A mature woman who is rooted in Christ and who has totally surrendered to Him understands this truth. Secondly, we are not in competition with men; we are complementary to them. Biblical manhood and womanhood achieved perfectly is harmony. We were created to be in harmony with men. We were never created to be duplicates of one another, but to highlight one another in our distinctly different yet equally valuable roles. Third, this completely erroneous mindset all started with the rebellion of Eve in the Garden of Eden.
Yes, I said Eve. The Word of God says in Genesis 3:1 that the serpent was very subtle when he approached Eve in the garden and tempted her to sin and eat from the forbidden tree. (Have you noticed that I’ve mentioned the word subtle several times in this post? It is to drive home the point that the enemy can be, and oftentimes is, very cunning. Be alert!) All the serpent had to do was whisper a few lies before seeping into her thoughts, causing her to question everything she knew. When the serpent told Eve in Genesis 3:4-5 that “Ye shall not surely die: For God knows that in the day you eat thereof, then your eyes shall be opened, and you will be as gods knowing good and evil”, it was the beginning to an end. Instead of questioning what she had heard and measuring it against God’s command, she somehow thought that she was privileged because she became privy to information that God had never disclosed. She wanted more wisdom. She wanted to know more than Adam AND God (or so she thought). She had to have believed, even for a split second, that God was trying to deprive her and her family (when in fact He knew that nothing in her life was missing). She thought for one moment that it would be beneficial for her and her family to eat from the tree of the knowledge of good and evil, because the enemy made it look and sound so good. She made a life or death decision without consulting God or her husband. Sound familiar?
When we are supposed to be in harmony with one another, and we step out of the harmony of God’s divine order, what happens is written. All hell breaks loose – literally. Everything changed in an instant, and both Adam and Eve found themselves in sin and were naked and ashamed. Immediately God called out in Genesis 3:9 and said “Adam, where are you?” God knew where Adam was; He knew what they had done. But why did He ask this question? Because Adam was the leader and He wanted an explanation. Regardless of what decision(s) a woman makes, if a man has been entrusted with leading a woman – in the home, in the church, or wherever…the man is ultimately responsible to God for the decisions of his family. Men must lead – at all costs. (But this blog post is not about the men!) God eventually approached Eve and held her accountable as well. But the damage had already been done. We had been introduced to sin. But His lovingkindness was also shown when instead of condemning Adam and Eve (and us), He offered a way out. The prophecy of His son would come to pass.
Because Eve took the lead role, Adam had been forced to take a passive role. He said to God in Genesis 3:12: “The woman that you gave to be with me, she gave me of the tree, and I did eat.” Wow. Ladies, I want us all to focus on the error in Eve’s ways here, not Adam’s. I’m certainly not trying to make us look bad, but the sad reality is this: If Eve wasn’t a feminist, she certainly displayed strong characteristics of one. She thought she could disregard the authority and instruction of God without consequence, and make an executive decision over her husband. She was thirsty for control and power. She wanted to take Adam AND God’s place (catch that! – Genesis 3:5-6), and as a result of her decision, she took everything out of divine order. And Adam ate with her. It doesn’t take much for things to spiral out of control. Just a careless, impulsive, thoughtless decision.
So how does this apply to the feminist movement and God’s biblical order and truth? What happened in the Garden of Eden on that day is a direct correlation to sin (ALL sin) entering into the world, and it entered the world immediately. Feminism is just one of the many effects of the decision made by our first parents in the garden. Many years ago, feminism began as a movement to seek equality for women in the areas of voting rights, child labor laws, property rights, etc. Which isn’t so bad, right? Well, aside from the fact that seeking equality for women when we were already created equal according to God’s Word (which seems again to be subtle rebellion), not too bad on the surface. But it didn’t end in the first wave of feminism. And although I can’t adequately express all of my thoughts about feminism and its threat to the biblical family structure in one blog post, I can tell you that the second wave of feminism was a personal blow aimed directly at the wife and mother’s role in the home, and the third wave of feminism moved beyond merely wanting to be equal to men in everything, to wanting to be better than men. Just what I described earlier. Do you see how flawed this ideology is when measured against the truth? Yet, it is still so easy for deception to creep in.
The truth is, in one way or another, we are all feminists – or have been feminists at some point in time. Whether it is seen in our conversations with close sisters and friends that consist of griping and complaining about men’s incessant imperfections (borderline male-bashing); in our silent thoughts, reactions, and disbelief towards (very) young women we know who go against the grain and make a choice to marry the godly man that God reserved for them; in our uneasiness and hesitancy that flares up when our husbands and spiritual leaders ask for our trust; in our inner rebellion towards God’s design by wanting to prolong or even avoid our own pursuit and preparation for marriage by replacing it with (selfish) personal, ministerial, and career agendas (i.e. degrees, high-profile jobs, positions of authority, money-driven decision-making, carefree and hassle-free lifestyle devoid of the stresses of marriage and children, the list goes on and on). This is where the subtlety comes in. And it needs to be acknowledged. It is one thing to be content in your singleness single woman, and it is another to be content with not being under submission to God’s will, running away from your true purpose and calling (aka rebellion). Please discern the difference. And check your heart on the regular.
Just as Eve was deceived by what she heard then saw in the Garden of Eden, Satan still persists in deceiving us today with what we hear first. It sounds really good, so it has to be true, right? It looks good, so it must be good for me right? Wrong. We are so led by our emotions and what looks and sounds good to us. What we hear can quickly become our truth if we are not careful to reject anything that is contrary to God. Don’t allow Satan to deceive you any longer by mere words. Listen to the one true voice. And if you are ever uncertain about whose voice you are hearing, dig into the Word of God and search out the truth for yourself. It is in His Word that you will be able to separate the truth from the lies.
Ladies, I know it’s not all us, for we have all sinned and fallen short of the glory of God – male and female. This is why God sent His son Jesus Christ to redeem us all from the curse. I am also aware that feminism isn’t the only sin that has infiltrated our world and caused the biblical family to be weakened. However, if you look back at the first fall of man, rebellion and rejection of God’s sovereign authority was the culprit. And feminism, quite frankly, is rebellion. We are not in control. We are not little gods. Rebelling against God will only create for us more problems, not offer more solutions. With the knowledge and wisdom that you now have, there is no way that you can identify with being a feminist and claim Christianity at the same time. There’s just NO way. If we commit to being women as outlined for us in God’s Word all throughout the Bible, we can work towards change and recover from the sting of feminism.
In no way, shape, or form does embracing God’s design make us inferior as women. In fact, it’s quite the opposite. He made us to be helpers; and what an honor it is to be a helper, the strength of a man who has been called to lead as Christ leads His church in everything that he does. This doesn’t mean that we can’t help in providing for the family or lead in certain ways; again, we’re helpers! We see examples of this in the Book of Proverbs, Chapter 31. The Proverbs 31 Woman leads in some areas, but she never oversteps her boundaries and always remains in submission to her husband who is in submission to Christ. We should never take on the leadership role as a primary responsibility in our homes or in the church.
The main takeaway for us is this: We must first fully embrace the Gospel, the love of Christ, and submit to His authority. We must understand how profound the sacrifice of Jesus is to our very existence. We must renounce feminism, its history, and all other acts of rebellion. We must then become well-versed in God’s truth and the roles He has defined for us, so that we are not easily deceived by the things we see and hear in this world (in this case and for this post, I’m referring specifically to feminism). Finally, we must set out to conform to our God-given role and make room for the men in our lives to step up and take their rightful place. In many cases, this means we have to step back. And we thank God in advance for His precious grace – because Lord knows that “stepping back” is oftentimes against our very nature.
I stand united with you as we all seek out His perfect will for our lives.
Blessings and love,
If you have not purchased my book yet, now is the perfect time! I talk about it all…feminism, abortion, homosexuality, sexual promiscuity and prostitution, and so many other things in our culture that are aiding in the enemy’s agenda. This book fights against them all. Bless another young woman’s life. Bless your own life! This is Gods work, not mine. And as biblical women of God, we grow in love. God is love. God Bless you! Happily Ever After: Biblical Womanhood, The Pursuit of Christ…and Marriage by Porsche R. Armstrong