Previously, I wrote of the model of traditional marriage and how it’s developed into a model of a female goddess of high value and a male worshiper of low value. If this were my last blog presence, both of these posts would have large link-trees since I’ve developed these concepts in many ways over dozens of posts quoting people indicating these kinds of things, so I apologize in advance if anything looks strange at first glance.
Man Rationalizes His Own Behavior
It’s good to start out by noting the constructs of tradition and how they are developed. Men start out by doing things, and then the reasons behind them get lost and no one knows the “why” of anything. Jesus deals with the effects of these things in Matthew 15:1-9. Traditional marriage and gender roles is definitely a case where the commandments of men have transgressed God’s design on things.
Often, men (and women) have a way of also taking their own expectations and then Scripture-shopping or redefining Scripture to meet those expectations. I’ve mentioned this often in terms of the false gospel of the Personal Jesus, where man’s own expectation becomes God’s commandment.
Reconciling Traditional Marriage With Scripture
Often these manipulations of men require a number of deceptions for them to take hold. I’ve encountered and had to eliminate many of them by reading Scripture and allowing the Spirit to change my mind. Traditional and modern marriage has an exceedingly large number of deceptions that I’ve cataloged over dozens of posts.
Schlessinger took occasion to quote one of them in dealing with responses to the predictable uproar that women would do anything to “submit” to men:
The Reverend Shane Cornutt, from Alabama, was one of many in and out of the clergy who wrote me to clarify this issue:
“Over the past couple of weeks I have noticed that some of your lady callers have had questions on a wife’s submission to her husband and how it deals with their Christian faith when faced with a moral problem.
Nowhere in the Bible is a woman told to blindly submit to the will of her husband. In fact, the first act of submission is on the husband’s part! The husband is to submit himself to Christ and the will of God. When he does this he is not setting himself up as master, but rather as servant of the Lord. Only then is the wife to submit to the will of her husband—because the will of her husband will be obedience to the Lord. So the wife is not submitting to the husband, but to God.
As soon as the husband steps outside this and acts contrary to scripture, the woman is under no moral obligation whatsoever to her husband to transgress the moral law! Women are not, and were never meant to be, set up as servants to men in the kingdom of God.
A man is supposed to love his wife as Christ loves the church. That means that a husband is required to love, care for, nurture, protect, comfort and even be willing to die for his wife. That is love.”
The reverend ended his letter with an admonition to men, suggesting that if any man is upset because he feels his wife is not in “proper submission” to him, the problem is with the man! (1)
Now those who have read my blogging in the past (among many others), will recognize this argument as it’s been dealt with many times as espoused by many figures. Cornutt is carving out an exception to the Biblical dictates that wives submit to their husbands in everything. When some “moral problem” comes up, he is giving the wives carte blanche to not follow their husbands.
Now the question is this: Who is the authority that determines whether something presents a “moral problem”? The answer that many other commentators have come up with is that it’s the wife! So anything that goes against her whim and will becomes a “moral problem”. Again another question presents itself: Who is the one that determines whether the husband “submits himself to Christ and the will of God”? Again it’s the wife! So she has the complete freedom to pay heed to her husband. Or not. Whatever she wants.
Note how Cormutt casts the problem as one of the husband’s – blame is always cast towards him and never to the wife in religious situations. And if he doesn’t go for her will, she can marshal all the force of the church, and ultimately put the threat of divorce (and his devastation as a man in both the church and wider society) over his head in order to ensure his compliance to his wife.
Reconciling the Language With The Deception
So ultimately, marriage is rearranged into an arrangement where the wife is the one that is the moral arbiter and the husband is the one that submits to his wife. This fits the previous arrangement, and throws the marriage into a situation where the husband is continually chasing after her desires and wishes and if there’s a problem he just isn’t listening to her heart well enough. Her heart is holy and pure (she is a Vicar of Christ), and therefore must be followed at all costs! After all, a goddess always needs to be served! An illustration of this process is presented in this graphic:
However, we must remember that the concepts must be fit into the language of Scripture. Again this requires a rationalization of an untruth. I’ve often used the analogy of “Driving Miss Daisy” submission or a horse buggy to illustrate how this is done. The husband is driving the limo and the wife rides in back. The husband is the horse and the wife is the driver. But “Daisy” directs the limo where it is to go. The driver determines where the buggy goes.
In enforcing such a model, the church officials often do not call upon the wives to submit to their own husbands, but calls the husband to “step up and lead his family” (existing nowhere in Scripture). Again this puts the burden upon the husband to perform to his wife’s expectations. He is buffaloed into this model by his conditioning to male mother need, and ultimately is seen as the one leading (with the willing participation of the wife in the deception) – by seeking out his wife’s will on everything and then following it. If he does not do this, then he is “not loving his wife as Christ loves the church”, and becomes a failure.
But what of submission as it is brought up in relationship to wives? The nearest meaning I can take out of Schlessinger’s book is a submission to the traditional gender roles as opposed to her husband. As quoted earlier, as long as she provides the 3 A’s and her demands upon her husband, all will be well.
In the end, all this deception, all this force of man against the God-ordained plan of marriage makes this transformation from Scripturally-defined marriage to traditional marriage:
In the end, all of this contributes together to make a marriage where the man continually falls into the pattern of Adam where he “hast hearkened unto the voice of thy wife” (Genesis 3:17) instead of God. For those that choose to not see, marriage has turned from God-honoring to woman-honoring (violating Commandments I and II) and man’s tradition has been baked into people’s minds allowing them to not see anything different.
In the next post, I will address some of Schlessinger’s quotes that reveal some of the programming that has been given to both men and women that fits this model of goddess-worship that has replaced God-honoring marriage.
(1) The Proper Care & Feeding of
Animals Husbands by Dr. Laura Schlessinger p149-150.