by Dan Seagren
Posted: December 3, 2017
The news of late draws attention…
Without a doubt, our generation has seen significant progress for women, single and married: on TV news, as CEOs and professors, in governing positions, professionals, athletes, authors and more. On the other hand, womanhood has suffered through the rise in abortions, shrinking families (2.1 children needed to maintain population), widespread divorce, discrimination and heavy loads thanks to absent fathers. And the news of late has spotlighted the evils of sexual harassment and exploitation by well known men in entertainment, business and politics..
The Bible reveals the names of some 400 female personalities, some familiar, others quite vague. Early on, God created man and woman (Genesis 1:27). Identical? No, but complimentary. Eve broke a command not to eat from a special Tree but later Adam did also. Before long, we find Hagar (exploited), Dinah (raped) and Sarah (childless but offered her maid to bear a child for herself) and other types like Jezebel, Delilah and Salome. King David seduced an offficer's wife, had him slain in battle and took her as his wife. His son Solomon had an unbelievable number of wives and concubines. On the other hand, there are many wonderful women among the 400 mentioned, like Mary, Ruth, Esther, Priscilla, Rahab, and Deborah.
Sexual violence is condemned; so is inhumane treatment of women. The Bible records women's rights that exist even today. God forbids the strong to harm the weak, the rich not to steal from the poor (specifically including women); God approved of adoption and even had standards for women's appearance (like not emulating the appearance of disgraced women). God restricted victorious men from using captive women as slaves. That God forgave (David) and tolerated (Solomon) should not be interpreted as actions dismissed by God, but instead illsutrating the story of grace and redemption that is the overall theme of the Bible.
Biblical ethics outlines the role of men and women with patterns pertaining to both sexes. The Commandment Honor your mother and father was issued to enable society's survival.
The question is still quite alive: Does it really matter what the ancient book, the Bible, says to current times? It does, both directly (universal rules and regulations) and indirectly. What about Women's Lib? Liberation means release, set free. In that role, Women's Lib is on track. But if interpreted to mean equality in all ways to men, no. Fatherhood and motherhood are quite essential for an ideal, balanced marriage, each performing important roles to be passed on.
Remember that term DINK (double income, no kids)? What about SITK (single income, two or more kids)? If either a mom or dad (or both) ignore skilled parenting, there is trouble ahead. It was God's intention in the beginning but history shows that neither society nor civilizations function well without upright families.
Also seefor insights into demographic trends.
Dan Seagren is an active retiree whose writings reflect his life as a Pastor, author of several books, and service as a Chaplain in a Covenant Retirement Community.• E-mail the author (su.nergaesnad@brabnad*) • Author's website (personal or primary**)
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