Who are these submissive women?
By Linda Prussen-Razzano
During the recent Republican Presidential debates in Ames, Iowa, a question of faith arose that has frequently been misused, misrepresented, and continually misinterpreted by the main stream media: that of women who willingly submit to the authority of their husbands. Women who advocate a strong Christian faith are often portrayed as weak, timid, or somehow suffering under the heel of an oppressive husband while simultaneously being chained to hot stove with wailing children hanging off their hips. The general resentment over this perpetual gross mischaracterization of a true Christian marriage reached a fever pitch when columnist Byron York asked Congressman Michelle Bachmann if, as President, she would submit to the authority of her husband, prompting the audience to react with strong boos and negative outcries.
Feminists and their cohorts in the media have latched onto this passage as proof of the patriarchal subjugation of women inherent in Christianity, as concrete "evidence" that Christianity is a misogynistic and oppressive religious regime. What they fail to address, and where they willfully miss the point entirely, is the second portion of this passage that puts a much larger burden on husbands.
"Giving thanks always for all things to God and the Father in the name of our Lord Jesus Christ; 21Submitting yourselves one to another in the fear of God.
22Wives, submit yourselves to your own husbands, as to the Lord. 23For the husband is the head of the wife, even as Christ is the head of the church: and he is the savior of the body. 24Therefore as the church is subject to Christ, so let the wives be to their own husbands in every thing.
25Husbands, love your wives, even as Christ also loved the church, and gave himself for it; 26That he might sanctify and cleanse it with the washing of water by the word, 27That he might present it to himself a glorious church, not having spot, or wrinkle, or any such thing; but that it should be holy and without blemish. 28So ought men to love their wives as their own bodies. He that loves his wife loves himself. 29For no man ever yet hated his own flesh; but nourishes and cherishes it, even as the Lord the church: 30For we are members of his body, of his flesh, and of his bones. 31For this cause shall a man leave his father and mother, and shall be joined to his wife, and they two shall be one flesh. 32This is a great mystery: but I speak concerning Christ and the church. 33Nevertheless let every one of you in particular so love his wife even as himself; and the wife see that she reverence her husband. (Ephesians 5, v. 20-33, American KJV)."
Quite simply, women are to be respectful of their husband and to look to him for guidance, to give them final decision-making ability in the household. Men, on the other hand, are instructed not just to be respectful, but to love, nourish, cherish, protect, sanctify, and, if necessary, give their lives for their wives. In fact, spouses are to submit themselves to one another, while keeping God in the center of their marriage. There are obligations on both sides if the marriage is to be sound.
Feminists and their media lackeys who don't have a true Christian marriage will probably never understand what it's like to be in one; that it is, in fact, a tremendous and sustaining gift that brings peace and happiness. Contrary to their assertions, and the media's false stereotype of the meek woman cringing in her husband's shadow, women in a true Christian marriage are empowered and confident. They respect themselves and trust their own judgment enough not to second-guess their choice of husbands, and their husbands have proven themselves to be loving and honorable men.
I am proud to submit to the authority of my husband. I trusted my judgment in picking a man who was strong, wise, loving, loyal, hardworking, honorable, God-fearing, and possessed a wicked sense of humor. After 18 amazing years of marriage, he still shows me he loves me every day, tries to please me every day, and puts me and our children first every day. He's not a "player" pretending to be the man of the house; he is the man of the house. In those 18 years, I can count on one hand the number of times my husband said no - that I didn't get exactly what I wanted, or do exactly what I wanted, just by mentioning that I wanted it.
Oppressed? That's a laugh!
Linda Prussen-Razzano is contributor to Enter Stage Right and a number of other online magazines.