The rather famous (and infamous) wise woman in Proverbs 31 is sometimes maligned, sometimes noticed, but rarely cherished as the example for females.
The doctrine that teaches that the Church is the Bride of Christ on earth gives a vivid picture: the bridegroom is the head and the bride is the body. A man, as Christ, should nourish and cherish, love, give freedom, respect and encourage gifts in his bride. Why then is the doctrine of women, as frequently taught, more about “submission to her father, her husband” and taught as if that is the circumference of her need to know.
Women want, need and crave a loving, nourishing, leader. A husband who is a protector and has the character and life she is proud to be “one” with. Submitting to a man of worth then becomes no issue at all; she surrounds, protects and honors him and their household with her best ideas and loyalty and respect. A good woman dedicates her life to his welfare and success. A good woman does not have to “drum up” submission.
There is so much in Scripture to women that is encouraging, uplifting and affirming. It is troubling that the history of the Church has not emulated Christ in many ways. But in the Church history women were owned by a father and husband: they had no power to defend themselves from a tyrant. They had no right to own land, vote. Often there was no way to polish and express their God given gifts and creativity.
Yet the Wise Woman (of Proverbs 31) bought and sold land, had a business in the marketplace, maybe two or more. She traveled distances to “bring her food from far.” She soon discovered that her husband raved about her.
I thank women who went before me, who opened doors for me. Yet Feminism often rejects God and the Bible. Why? Is it first because leaders in the Church were demeaning to them?
A prominent woman in a nearby church told me about a conversation with her husband a leader in the assembly, “When I said something simple and safe to my husband about the women’s movement, he said, ‘Then you too are deceived’ ”.
A woman Bible teacher told me emphatically, “I believe strongly in the leadership of men.” Her point seemed to be that my point in Submission Is Not Silence, contradicted her “strong belief”. It doesn’t.
So, to make it clear: what is exciting to me about the philosophy I discovered straight from the Bible: it is about the wholeness, power and privilege of women given them by God. To my freedom and joy, I found there was so much to know.