Saturday, September 8, 2012

Manly Leadership, the Duties and Responsibilities of Men and Women in the Church, an intro

"But I would have you know, that the head of every man is Christ; and the head of the woman is the man; and the head of Christ is God." (1 Corinthians 11:3)

Readers, I pray that you all will forgive me for not posting for such a long stretch of time. I have no excuse for it, and I pray that you all don't leave me for being slothful in this. 

I believe that it is my duty to proclaim the Truth of God's Word to you, instead of reading Hobbes' Leviathan or Locke's Second Treatise on Civil Government. I am, as the hymn writer put it, "prone to wander", and I am especially prone to man's philosophies. From now on, I must be rid of them, and focus my energies where God wills.

Thus far, I have focused mainly upon submission to the authorities. However, these were rather general statements about issues which I felt needed addressed, with the current state of affairs in the World. However, I need to further narrow my focus to how God's Children should act, ensuring that my teaching will equip the Saints for ministry. Since I think you now understand what God has commanded us to do with respect to government and governing authorities, I shall move on to the authorities in the Church. 

This post will be the intro to a little series which is entitled, "Manly Leadership, the Duties and Responsibilities of Men and Women in the Church". To be honest, I know that I cannot write this series in a way that will edify the Body and strengthen Christ's Bride, at least not on my own strength. Thankfully, "His divine power has granted to us all things that pertain to life and godliness, through the knowledge of him who called us, by his own glory and excellence, by which he has granted to us his precious and very great promises, so that through them you may become partakers of the divine nature, having escaped from the corruption that is in the world because of sinful desire." So, I know that the Bible is sufficient in order to allow me to teach and be used by God to sanctify Christ's Bride. Well, as long as I teach what is found therein...

OK, now that you all have suffered through my random thoughts, I return now to the original meaning of this post. 

At the very basis of the human authorities in the Church, lie the men. Sounds rather uncontroversial, right? It actually is not, especially in the Church. Men who believe like I do are typically called sexist, bigoted, unloving, heretics, etc. In fact, whole books are written by bitter men and women alike in order to trample underfoot this doctrine which God has given us. Believe me, this is very controversial. So, I will do my best to stay away from diving into controversy, but I believe that it is almost necessary if I am to speak the Truth. 

So, here is the verse that I have especially chosen for today:

"But I would have you know, that the head of every man is Christ; and the head of the woman is the man; and the head of Christ is God." (1 Corinthians 11:3)

I believe that this verse must be understood in order for us to continue. The truths contained in it are vast and deep, allowing us to understand the structure of the Body of Christ.

"But I would have you know, that the head of every man is Christ..." 

One of the most important words in this verse, which we first find in this section, is κεφαλὴ. This word can have several meanings, which are decided by context. It can mean the physical head of a person, or it can mean a chief, a ruler, or a chief ruler. In this context, it makes no sense that Christ is the physical head of men, for we would then be forced to worship our skulls (not even going to go there). It only makes sense that this word, in this context, means "ruler" or "chief ruler". So, with that in mind, we can translate this section to, "the ruler of every man is Christ". Christians, and so-called christians, everywhere agree with this.

So, let us move along.

"...and the head of the woman is the man..."

Using proper hermeneutics, we must again replace "head" with "ruler". So, "...and the ruler of the woman is the man...". A good paraphrase of this verse is, "Just as Christ is the ruler of men, and God is the Ruler of Christ (note: in order to understand that part, you need to study how Christ submits to the Father as a son does to his father), men are the rulers of women." 

Men are to be the leaders, in all cases (notice, Paul does not qualify this verse by saying, "the man is head of the woman, but only in the following cases..."). There is no other conclusion which we can come to from this verse. If there is, PLEASE SHOW ME!

This verse is a call for men to step up to the plate. Men, we are, by virtue of the commands of God, the leaders of all, especially of women. Did you not hear that? We are their leaders, we are the rulers of our families, and the Family of God. It is to us that God has given the responsibility of leading, not to the ladies. If your wife is the ruler of your household, you are sinning against God Almighty, and you deserve His Divine Wrath as a result! 

Here is a common situation: It is nine-o-clock at night. You just got home from work, and are completely wiped. So, you turn on the T.V. (or the computer) and sit back and enjoy yourself (maybe you are even playing a video game, I don't know). While you are "recharging your batteries", you hear your wife in the background. She is giving orders to the kids, and they refuse to obey. After many minutes of this, she cries out in frustration, "Honey! Please help!" "I am tired" you think, "and I just need to relax." So, you ignore your wife, and let her deal with the little rebels which you are raising.* You kick back, and enjoy your "me time".

If the above situation is common in your house, grow up and be a man! Your family needs you to lead them, for you are, as the father, the ruler of your household. If you do not do your job, your house will be a mess. It is not your wife's job to lead the house, for she is a woman. Rather, it is your job, for you are her ruler. 

It is the same in the Church and in other places. Men refuse to lead, so women pick up the ball and do their best to run things. However, God did not make women to be rulers, so it is impossible for them to rule as well as a man can. So, the churches, families, and other things, crumble. This is not the fault of the ladies, it is the fault of the men. I might go so far as to say this: if there is a major problem in a Church, or in a home, or in so many other places, it is 99.9999999% of the time the fault of the men, because they are not leading as God has called them to lead. 

Men, step up to the plate and lead. Women, step down off the platforms of leadership which you may have established for yourselves, and move the men to take up the mantle of leadership.

This will not be easy for any of us. Many times us men fall short. We goof off, act lazy, and often rebel against taking up leadership. However, we must lead. It will also be difficult for ladies, since  you often feel that you should be running things and ruling over men. The blame for our messed-up leadership roles do not lie solely upon either the men or the ladies. Rather, it rests upon us both, but mainly the men. Men have sinned by not leading, and women have sinned by taking up authority over men. We must all work to get our own lives straightened out, bending the knee before our LORD God.

*If you refuse to train up your children in the way they should go, you are actually raising up rebels.