The whole "head of the wife" thing always makes me think of 1 Corinthians 12:12-26 (or thereabouts), particularly this bit:
But God has combined the members of the body and has given greater honor to the parts that lacked it, so that there should be no division in the body, but that its parts should have equal concern for each other.
Post by whatkindofwoman on Oct 17, 2010 8:48:16 GMT -5
This is very helpful.
Particularly helpful: pointing out that "all things are beneath Christ's feet"...except the Church.
I haven't read your part 3 yet,
but so far what I'm getting is that the letter of Ephesians was written as instruction to particular people, on how to live as a Christian within their present, already established social position, or household-code position. I suspect that where you're going is this: present-day Christian wives should not be expected to insert themselves into the household-code of the ancient Ephesians, rather, Christian wives should live as Christians within their present, already established social or household-code position. Which means something very different in 21st century America, than it did in Ephesus of Paul's day.
I've heard bits and snatches of this point of view, but have discounted it in the past because I was hearing it from non-fundy sources, who were "nominally Christian". It's been much easier to hear another person's reasoning/point-of-view when
a) I've stopped being so judgmental (that is, I'm trying!) b) I've begun to see that God is way bigger than fundamentalism
(oh, and recognizing fundy-ism when you're part of it is...a challenge...)
c) I tried the male headship/female submission thing for a number of years--including homeschooling against my inclination--and I finally crashed and burned and started fighting for my (female) life!
Question: Who is Michael Kruse and how did you come to select him as a qualified source of information?
I don't mean that as a challenge. I really just want to know about him, because it seems you drew pretty heavily from his writings, in your research.
Post by krwordgazer on Oct 17, 2010 12:45:21 GMT -5
Barberaw-- that's a good verse. Thanks for pointing it out.
Whatkindofwoman-- yes, as a matter of fact, that is pretty much the direction this essay is going; but it also tries to make it clear that the New Testament really is dropping a new paradigm into the status quo of the times, one of mutual service and humility as equal-status members of God's family (which supercedes earthly family). Older cultic Christian movements, such as the shepherding movement (which I was involved in in college and after) use the whole idea of "God's family supercedes earthly family" to isolate members from their loved ones and put them under the control of church leaders. QF/P's tactic is different. It makes the nuclear family (to the exclusion of non QF/P relatives, however) equivalent to God's family and the Kingdom of God. Because of this emphasis, the point about God's family NOT being equivalent to a human "pater familias" and his wife and children, is a very important point here.
If I were to refute the teachings of a shepherding-type cult movement, I would be pointing out how our primary allegiance is to God, not to church leaders, emphasizing the Scriptures about giving love and honor to our parents, and focusing on the overbalanced teaching of church-primacy rather than on the overbalanced teaching on family-primacy. Either one can be misused to give humans illegitimate control over others-- but neither one represents the whole counsel of the Scriptures.
As for Michael Kruse, I use his website because he is a scholar who has done extensive research on this issue-- and his research is confirmed by other scholars who use the "Grand Story" or "metanarrative" hermeneutic (which I subscribe to largely because it dovetails with the way my professors taught me to read and understand literature when I was getting my English degree, as the most logical way to find the intended meaning of any piece of writing).
Here is his (very unassuming) blurb about himself; he serves on the Presbyterian United States Missionary Council. I expect his academic qualifications are extensive, but he appears to prefer to talk about his cat.