Wednesday, November 12, 2008
The Danger of A Personal Agenda
As early as Eve in the Garden of Eden, feminism’s true quest has been for superiority. Carolyn McCulley says, “One woman decided that God’s boundaries and definition for her weren’t good…The seeds of feminism are, ‘I want what I want,’ ‘I want to define it how I want it,’ and ‘I don’t want to give God the glory.’” The desired object may no longer involve the fruit of the tree of the knowledge of good and evil. The desire to become one’s own God, however, seems to be like a ribbon flowing throughout history that Satan uses to pull people away from God. There is natural rebellion against the prophet Isaiah’s words that God’s ways are higher than man’s ways, and His thoughts are higher than human thoughts.
Recognizing that it was “not good for man to be alone,” God made a “helper fit for him” by creating Eve. In The Feminist Mystique, Betty Friedan tells countless tales of women who feel oppressed by the stereotypical image of females. One woman insists she loves her husband, children and home, but feels she has no personality. She says, “I’m a server of food and a putter-on of pants and a bedmaker, somebody who can be called on when you want something. But who am I?” Selfishly wanting success in some form other than in the family she claims to love, this woman’s personal agenda, like many others, prevents her from flourishing in the Father’s purpose for her life. This is hardly a twentieth century struggle.
James 3:14-16 says, “But if you have bitter jealousy and selfish ambition in your hearts, do not boast and be false to the truth. This is not the wisdom that comes down from above, but is earthly, unspiritual, demonic. For where jealousy and selfish ambition exist, there will be disorder and every vile practice.”
This is exactly what has happened in the world today. Resentment of the created purpose of males and females has created the muddle of effeminate men, manly females, and transgenders. The same bitterness produces depraved habits including homosexuality and pornography. One theologian evaluated the cost of feminism “cannot be measured by MasterCard, for some things are priceless. It is measured in the fifty percent divorce rate, the destruction of the family unity, the elimination of forty million unborn children, and the proliferation of pornography, and its ugly cousin, sexually transmitted diseases.”
What if Jesus Christ had come to earth with a personal agenda? Not only was He brought into the world with the incomprehensible task of living a sinless life and dying for humanity’s sin, but He was also the only One to never question the Father’s authority. Praying in the Garden of Gethsemane before He was crucified, Jesus said, "My Father, if it be possible, let this cup pass from Me; nevertheless, not as I will, but as You will.”
Though he was fully God, He knew that His role was to be submissive to the Father. According to Paul, Jesus “did not count equality with God a thing to be grasped, but made himself nothing, taking the form of a servant, being born in the likeness of men.”
Christ’s task was much more demoralizing than making a few beds or cooking a few meals. Realizing the cross that was before him, human logic can see how easy it could have been for Jesus to resent that the Father did not choose him to build the ark like Noah, part the Red Sea like Moses, or ride a chariot of fire to heaven like Elijah. However reasonable this thought is, Paul shares reality in Philippians 2:8. Jesus “humbled himself, by becoming obedient to the point of death.”
Jesus Christ could have used His deity to climb down from the cross. He could have fought back. He had the power, but he refused to use it, because He sought to fulfill the lifelong covenant that God made with Abraham. Andreas J. Kostenberger argues marriage is a comparable covenant “because it is rooted in creation and the will of the Creator Himself.”
I Corinthians 12:9-10 should encourage married couples to seek God’s sufficient grace and power made perfect in weakness rather than divorce. Paul writes, “Therefore I will boast all the more gladly of my weaknesses, so that the power of Christ may rest upon me. For the sake of Christ, then, I am content with weaknesses, insults, hardships, persecutions, and calamities. For when I am weak, then I am strong.”
The Feminist Mystique by Betty Friedan
"Biblical Manhood and Womanhood and The Contemporary Collapse of Sexual Moral," by Peter Jones - (http://www.cbmw.org/images/articles_pdf/jones_peter/sexualmorals.pdf)
Radical Womanhood: Feminine Faith in a Feminist World by Carolyn McCulley