Wednesday, July 22, 2009

Itching Ears, Part 14 (The Sin of the Gentiles)

Jesus has many sides. Two of them are his rulership over all and his loving selflessness. The itching ears crowd focuses on the one side—the rulership side, and claim when Ephesians 5 says the husband is the head, that gives the husband the right of rulership, leadership, or authority. (This is the belief that so frequently leads to domestic abuse and violence.) But Jesus expressly denounced rulership thinking and action and said that is what the Gentiles do. Matthew 20:25-28
“But Jesus called them unto him, and said, ‘Ye know that the princes of the Gentiles exercise dominion over them, and that they that are great exercise authority upon them. But it shall not be so among you: But whosoever will be great among you, let him be your minister; And whosoever will be chief among you, let him be your servant: Even as the Son of man came not to be ministered unto, but to minister, and to give his life a ransom for many.’”

With Jesus, Himself, denouncing the disciples’ desire for superiority, rulership, and hierarchical power over others, with Paul commanding husbands to love their wives even as Jesus loved the church and gave himself up for her, and with so many commands throughout the New Testament to love, edify, be kind one to another, etc., where in the earth did men get the idea these principles of love, equality, considering others better than themselves, etc. to have nothing to do with their relationships with their wives? They actually brush off large sections of scripture in favor of their pet doctrine: their own kingdom of power and control over their wives.

Church teaching explains that husbands don’t feel manly if they are not in control. This explanation is reserved for wives, which means they are actually saying men don’t feel manly if they are not in control of their wives. Indeed, men of society are in agreement with this mindset and call men who are self-sacrificial, considerate, and submissive to their wives, wimps, hen-pecked,and use many vulgar terms to degrade such men. Yet Ephesian 5:21 tells Christians to submit one to another in the fear of God, Ephesians 5:25 tells husbands to love their wives self-sacrificially as Christ did for the church, and the “likewise” in I Peter 3:7 tells husbands to be in subjection to their own wives, and to “dwell with them according to knowledge, giving honor unto the wife.” The church’s teaching is still in agreement with the world’s values. Both the church and the world’s view of manliness are in direct opposition to the scriptures. Both advocate and encourage husbands to sin.

Waneta Dawn is the author of "Behind the Hedge, A novel,"a story about a woman who grapples with her husband's demands that she submit--no matter what. Please visit

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