Listen up ladies, J. Lee Grady has a message for you. “If you are a woman of God, don’t sell your spiritual birthright by marrying a guy who doesn’t deserve you.” “Don’t settle for less than God’s best.” That’s right, demand your right to the single best man ever to exist other than Jesus. If you marry a guy that doesn’t have the wisdom and wealth of Solomon, the evangelistic zeal of Paul, the strength of Sampson, and the prowess of David, you are selling your birthright. Just by existing you deserve the amalgamation of all positive characteristics in one super-awesome man who has zero flaws.
Think that sounds over the top? Here’s the article.
What I find most amazing about the article is that out of the “10 [types of] men Christian women should never marry,” his first category is unbelievers, but his tenth category is men that have the audacity to actually believe the Bible. He certainly wouldn’t approve of me and my Scripture-quoting ways. In category one, Grady writes:
“Please write 2 Corinthians 6:14 on a Post-it note and tack it on your computer at work. It says, “Do not be bound together with unbelievers; for what partnership have righteousness and lawlessness, or what fellowship has light with darkness?” (NASB). This is not an outdated religious rule. It is the Word of God for you today.”
At this point, it seems like he accepts that the Bible is still applicable, and that those of us who call ourselves “Christians” ought to follow it. Sounds like something I would say. But look what he says in category ten:
“Some Christian guys today believe marriage is about male superiority. They may quote Scripture and sound super-spiritual, but behind the façade of husbandly authority is deep insecurity and pride that can morph into spiritual abuse. First Peter 3:7 commands husbands to treat their wives as equals.”
Watch out for those guys that have Scripture to back up their positions on gender roles. If he so much as mentions Ephesians 5:22-24, that’s spiritual abuse! Forget for a second how preposterous the phrase “spiritual abuse” is, what Grady is saying here is that it is abusive to believe any part of Scripture he doesn’t like. This claim he backs up by saying that 1 Peter 3:7 (apparently an acceptable scripture, unlike Ephesians 5:22-24) “commands husbands to treat their wives as equals.” So let’s look at this Grady-approved Bible verse, and see if it says what he claims it does. Since he used the NASB for his quote in category one, we will use that version for continuity.
“You husbands in the same way, live with your wives in an understanding way, as with someone weaker, since she is a woman; and show her honor as a fellow heir of the grace of life, so that your prayers will not be hindered.”
Dang, I’m just not seeing the “treat your wife as an equal” thing. In fact, it kinda looks like the verse actually says not to treat your wife as an equal, but rather as someone weaker! Maybe he just got the wrong verse. Lets look at the whole passage for context, and see if we can find what he’s talking about.
“In the same way, you wives, be submissive to your own husbands so that even if any of them are disobedient to the word, they may be won without a word by the behavior of their wives, as they observe your chaste and respectful behavior. Your adornment must not be merely external—braiding the hair, and wearing gold jewelry, or putting on dresses; but let it be the hidden person of the heart, with the imperishable quality of a gentle and quiet spirit, which is precious in the sight of God. For in this way in former times the holy women also, who hoped in God, used to adorn themselves, being submissive to their own husbands; just as Sarah obeyed Abraham, calling him lord, and you have become her children if you do what is right without being frightened by any fear. You husbands in the same way, live with your wives in an understanding way, as with someone weaker, since she is a woman; and show her honor as a fellow heir of the grace of life, so that your prayers will not be hindered.”
Somehow, I still don’t see the basis for Grady’s claim that this verse instructs “husbands to treat their wives as equals. Instead, I see a command to wives to submit to their husbands, even going so far as to call them “lord,” and a command to husbands to treat their wives as someone weaker, because they are women. Damn, that sorta seems like the exact opposite of what Grady claimed it said. Maybe that’s why he didn’t actually quote the verse, like he did with 2 Corinthians 6:14 in category one.
So watch out, all you single Christian ladies, for men who actually believe what the Bible says. Believing the Bible and trying to follow it is abusive. Oh, and good luck finding that perfect guy who isn’t an unbeliever, but also doesn’t believe the Bible. According to J. Lee Grady, you are selling your birthright if you don’t find him.