Continued . . .
With that I am confused by Gen 3:16 “Unto the woman he said, I will greatly multiply thy sorrow and thy conception; in sorrow thou shalt bring forth children; and thy desire shall be to thy husband and he shall rule over thee.” What does that mean to rule over thee?
Growing up, I heard the Bible read from cover to cover nearly ten times a year. My father was a Bible fan. However, the same passage you mention confused me, too. I was growing to be ever more silent thinking God always gave the answers to men. When I married Eric, in fourteen years our marriage was in serious trouble. Where was I blundering? I believed God is right and good and honors women. Why did I feel my husband was beginning to have disrespect for me? Angry, frustrated, I left my husband for four days. When I returned, immediately I began a study of who I should become from Scripture alone. It took ten years. I studied the Bible from beginning to end on this topic.
Here is what I think:
In Genesis 3:16 God speaks directly to the women, (and he speaks directly to men) about their lives and decisions and responsibilities. God spoke to Eve . . . , “Thy desire shall be to thy husband” (which means stretching out in longing). Understanding this, the man would take advantage of her, and would tend to rule her. He would see her longing and now he, (having sinned too) would attempt to rule over her . . . if he could.
“ . . . And he shall rule over thee.” . . . And Eve was then warned!
Look at domestic violence; look at slave trafficking of women. Consider her disadvantage in the market place. For so many years women could not even vote.
Nowhere in Scripture does God tell a man to “rule” his wife, tell her what to do or speak for her . . . in effect silence her. He is told . . . well . . . look at the previous Blog (above). Consider the affirmation God gives you. You are created in His own image. You will understand Scripture by “comparing spiritual things with spiritual”. You have a mind created in God’s image; not to be demeaned or ignored or to grow “rusty” through “nonuse”. . . which is where I was headed before studying for myself. I needed to know what I believed. All of us are responsible to judge one Scripture against another. I Co. 2:13.
Earning respect from your husband is stepping up and with respect “speaking the truth in love.” Earning it is by discouraging disrespect being the “wise woman who builds her house . . .” and in the famous chapter about her, Proverbs 31; her husband is only mentioned as “raving” about her.