The biggest surprise for me when I participated in Reactionary Ian’s last live-stream was just how hostile some of the other panelists–self-described patriarchal Christians all–were to Biblical patriarchal headship in marriage, and how quickly they tripped over themselves to proclaim a need for a wife to limit her submission in order to prevent her husband from “being a tyrant” and how insistent they were that a wife must “call out her husband’s sin.”
A wife “calling out her husband’s sin” is no less heretical than a female “bishop.”
A woman must quietly receive instruction with entire submissiveness. But I do not allow a woman to teach or exercise authority over a man, but to remain quiet. For it was Adam who was first created, and then Eve. And it was not Adam who was deceived, but the woman being deceived, fell into transgression. —1 Timothy 2:11-14 (NASB)
“Calling out” sin is a form of teaching, and an exercise of authority.
A husband is a man. A wife is a woman.
This is milk, folks.
About this we have much to say, and it is hard to explain, since you have become dull of hearing. For though by this time you ought to be teachers, you need someone to teach you again the basic principles of the oracles of God. You need milk, not solid food, for everyone who lives on milk is unskilled in the word of righteousness, since he is a child. But solid food is for the mature, for those who have their powers of discernment trained by constant practice to distinguish good from evil. —Hebrews 5:11-14 (ESV)
And how can you have a home free of rebellion, if you yourself rebel against the authority and responsibility God has assigned you, and actively encourage your wife to rebel against you?
Oh, I get it. It’s uncomfortable to think about having all that authority and responsibility. It is for me too. Believe me, I’ve caught myself tripping over myself to tell my wife how important her input is. I’ve remained silent when I should have corrected her, hoping that she would come to the right conclusions without me actively teaching and leading. The impulse to abdicate half of my kingdom must be beaten down violently in me.
And I know it’s not just me, and the guys on that live-stream. In a recent post, Cane Caldo wrote,
While it is murmured elsewhere that I am an oppressive dolt, the fact is you can’t keep me from tripping over myself to make clear my haste to demonstrate my lack of need for submission…which is a lie that I’ve been telling myself since I began thinking about submission. I do need my wife’s submission if I want a wife at all!
I’m a bit timid of this line of thinking. There is some sickness in me that wants my wife to find me…what? Equal? Unworthy? Something. At the same time: The sickness makes me bitter when it gets its wish! It is a stupid sickness of the Old Adam and it must be crucified within me. Healthy marriage is too important.
Too important indeed.
Beat down the impulse to allow your fear of your own weaknesses and shortcomings drive you to abdicate your God-given authority and responsibility. Instead, use that fear to drive you into closer reliance on God, into more fervent study of His Word, into more diligent overcoming of those shortcomings and weaknesses.
God gave you your mission, your authority, your responsibility. To deny it is to disobey Him. Accept the role He has given you, and claim His promise that He will assist you in rightly fulfilling it. Your ability to be worthy of the authority and responsibility God has entrusted you with is dependent only on your belief that God will make you worthy.
Jesus said unto him, If thou canst believe, all things are possible to him that believeth. —Mark 9:23 (KJV)