The bible tells us that God set an order to things between Himself, Christ, Man and woman in 1 Corinthians 11:3, which states:
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.
Which means that, according to the word of God, we can look at the structure of authority like this:
Using this well known model, sometimes referred to as “chain of command”, we would assume that every link has authority over every link below it, and that every link is accountable to the links above it. If we think of it in a military structure we might see it as a soldier who might be under the authority of a General, but his direct authority is his Commanding Officer, who has been given a grant of authority over him and acts on the Generals behalf. A direct order from a C/O can only be over-ridden by someone with a higher authority, ie: The General. In return the C/O is under the authority of the General and, because he is acting on the Generals behalf, should be doing his best to direct those under his authority in a manner befitting the General’s goal. If he does not, he answers to the General.
A soldier cannot just walk around his C/O and go straight to the General if he doesn’t like how his C/O is doing things. Though they may wage a complaint, to simply decide to stop obeying the commands of the C/O and picking up the phone to call the General from now on is a breech of protocol and is frowned upon.
Unfortunately modern Christians don’t like this concept, and prefer it look a bit more like this:
The reasons are varied, but could range from the pedestalization of women by modern men; the fact that women, overall, spend more money on religions materials than men (including, but not limited to, books, cd’s, devotionals, retreats and events) which in turn keeps church coffers full (you have to pay for the building, musical instruments, pastors house and car and A/V equipment somehow!); weak, feminized pastors, who capitulate to their wives or maybe pastors and church leaders who grew up in mother-only homes, and have canonized all women as saints (which does happen).
Regardless of, this altered chain of command presents a problem! You see, a simple reading of 1 Corinthians 11:3 plainly states the chain of command, as per God’s design! How, then, does a Christian pastor or leader make the switch to the NEW, ENLIGHTENED chain of command without revealing that he is pulling a slight of hand AND while being able to defend the adjustment to those few in his congregation who actually read and study their bibles? Easy!
The phrase, not found in the scripture, is a slick ploy to not only reverse the links between men and women on the chain of command, but to essentially shame men into going along with the concept if they want to be “Christ-like”. The trick is a simple one, really, and its remarkable that anyone would fall for it, but, in the same way the old “watch, while I pull off my finger” trick that fools little kids because they are simply naïve, so this trick works on the young in Christ, who are naïve enough to take everything another Christian who can claim they have followed Christ for at least a year longer than they have at face value, and on the complacent, who are not willing to study the word on their own. Its done like this:
Step 1: Take a single action by Jesus in the bible in which He, who had authority over everything on earth, so that the wind and the waves obeyed His words; so that even the demons obeyed His commandments; so that even with the words “I AM HE.” caused a legion of armed men to fall back as though struck; and turn it into EVERYTHING JESUS WAS ABOUT. In this case the action was the washing of the disciples feet.
Step 2: Despite the fact that the action was to be an example of how, within the body of the church, no one man should hold himself as being above or better than any other brother in Christ, turn it into a narrative about marriage! Its easier to do if you remind people that Paul spoke about marriage being like….what, now? Christ and the church!
Step 3: Pound, pound, pound it into the heads of husbands and wives that for husbands to accurately represent the “Christ” portion of “Christ and the church”, that husbands need to LEAD their wives by SERVING them, “just like Jesus served the disciples”!
Its just that easy!
The modern church of the West has successfully switched two links in the chain and made it almost impossible for men to act as the defacto authority in their marriages. Any and all attempts to assert their authority is now seen as the old, “unenlightened” Christian way, a way of doing things when Christian men were simply brutish oafs because science, technology and thought had not yet reached the pinnacle of superiority, much like it has now….in a culture in which a pile of poop has been turned into everything from a pillow to stickers to toys.
To ensure this new switch sticks men are shamed if they dare attempt to act in their God given role as the authority in their homes. They are told that they are “lording their authority over their wives, like the heathens do”, they are told they are acting unloving and un-christ-like, they are told they are abusers and that their continued resolve to act as the authority in their homes will result in their wives feeling “unloved” and the subsequent fallout will be their fault! The failings of the switch are covered by assigning a wife’s rebelliousness and disobedience to her husband not loving her enough, which is code talk for “not submitting to her as a slave”.
On the other side of the coin women are built up to believe that they have no need of authority because they are superior to their husbands in every way. In this the church and the culture work hand in hand, with the culture assuring women they are physical and mentally superior to men in every way while the church ensures them that they are spiritually superior to their husbands by virtue of the fact that they consume more religious material and have more emotional experiences than their husbands do. Like the General and Commanding Officer example above, modern Christian women are told they have a direct line to the General, so why even bother with the C/O? This creates a breeding ground for rebellion disguised as obedience, just not obedience to ones husband. So long as a woman can say she feels she is being obedient to God she is given full consent to disregard everything her husband says because “he is not God” and because, according to the church, “he isn’t even emulating Jesus”.
Ignorant people will readily accept this teaching from the “more learned” teachers and pastors, and will in turn pass it off to others, which causes what the bible calls a “strange doctrine” to become widely recognized as normal.
Unfortunately, however, its NOT normal and not how God created it and, as a result, the church is starting to see the fruits of this altered configuration. Increased divorce, adultery, rebellion, broken families: when you break the system you can expect the things that rely on that system to break as well.
Listen, brothers and sisters, do not be fooled. In the end everyone, even the General, must answer to the Commander-in-Chief. Though each link with authority will have to answer for how the lead those under their authority, even those under authority will have to give account for the things they have done. READ THE SCRIPTURES FOR YOURSELF, WITHOUT THE AID OF STUDY GUIDES, BOOKLETS OR COMMENTARIES. INSTEAD PRAY THAT THE HOLY SPIRIT WOULD HELP YOU ACCEPT THE TRUTH OF THE WORD!
It’s not written in code. It doesn’t require a mystical understanding of Hebrew or Greek. Just read it. Accept it, then live it. It wont be easy, no? Living a life for Christ is not intended to be easy. Ladies, you don’t want to submit to your husbands, I understand. It goes against everything you know. You feel it deep in your body, the need to rebel. Men, its tough to pick up the mantle of authority. You become responsible. You call the shots. You take the blame when you screw things up and you get the credit when things go well. You might have to put your foot down and butt heads with your wife. Its not comfortable.
But ask yourselves this. What kind of report do YOU want to give when its your turn to stand before the Commander-in-Chief?