Wednesday, November 12, 2008

Does Father Really Know Best?

Disclaimer: These next few blogs are going to cover the topic I've been writing this semester for Systematic Theology. Though it might be a little more scholarly than my normal blogging style, the truths I discovered through my research are too important to leave as an assignment. In addition to praying for divine intervention, at the bottom of each post, I'm going to do my best to include definitions of any term that may be unfamiliar. Feel free to post comments asking questions, and I will do my best to respond. As always, thanks for reading and allowing me to share my heart with you.

From 1954-1960, television brought an idealized family into American homes through Father Knows Best. Though the children were not always perfectly behaved, disagreements were always settled by the end of the 30-minute program, primarily due to rational advice of the father, Jim. In just 50 years, American culture has shifted from a father who knows best to fathers including: Homer Simpson of The Simpson’s, who knows nothing; Tim Taylor of Home Improvement, who knows everything about tools, cars, and the emergency room; and Doug Heffernan of King of Queens and Ray Barone of Everybody Loves Raymond, whose wives know everything for them.

Though initial feminist efforts by pioneers such as Susan B. Anthony and Elizabeth Cady Stanton sought restoration of equal rights for women, the feminist quest did not end with equal rights nor stay within political realms. The gender debate has not only found its way into television scripts, but inside the doors of evangelical Christian churches. Some churches have called females to serve as senior pastors, an office I Timothy 2:12 mandates for males. A recent translation of Scripture, Today’s New International Version, eliminates masculine language from the Bible, which at times, significantly alters the meaning of the text. The gender controversy today runs much deeper than equal rights.

Genesis 1:27 says God created males and females in His own image. Therefore, human beings can best learn about themselves by seeking to know the nature of God. Wayne Grudem writes that “there are no differences in deity, attributes, or essential nature between the Father, Son, and Holy Spirit. Each person is fully God and has all the attributes of God. The only distinctions between the members of the Trinity are in the ways they relate to each other and to creation.” Addressing submission, personal agenda, and impartial purpose, these next few blogs will examine how the doctrine of the Trinity reveals the Father knows best in His created purpose for both males and females.


Anonymous said...

I have a couple of pastors here in town who would argue with your theological interpretation since they are very touchy about gender bias (being female senior pastors)... but i could not agree more!
I think that many denominations have re-interpreted the Bible for convenience sake, since they do not have enough male pastors to fill their pulpits.

Michelle Myers said...

Bill, I think you're exactly right. I'm actually going to address that very issue within the next few days. Thanks for reading - God bless you and your ministry.