Tuesday, July 21, 2009

Manhood and Womanhood Defined

I just read a great book on the subject of manhood and womanhood, titled, "What's the Difference? Manhood and Womanhood Defined According to the Bible", by John Piper.

I can't directly quote him, but he acknowledges that mature men are here to protect, provide for, and lead women according to differing, appropriate relationships to women. Women were made to affirm, receive, and nurture strength and leadership from worthy men in appropriate, differing relationships.

What this basically means is that men are the leaders in the marriage (and even in society with women), although they acknowledge, and yes, decide based on equal conversation with their wives. Women are meant to uphold that leadership and follow their husband's decisions.

Now, I am not going to get into the complexities of why some women must work to provide for an ailing, unable to bear that leadership responsibility husband. Nor am I going to tread the controversial waters of the independent, "I don't need a man to lead me." attitudes, or the thoughts of why certain men are inadequate to lead their families. On the whole, I believe that man and woman were put here on earth with different roles as husband and wife, although they are equally valued by God.

I also think that Scripture supports men initiating as the main leader in spiritual matters, i.e. leading their family in prayer, taking the family to church, and setting up Biblical studies. Again, don't misinterpret this: there are instances when men do not step up to the plate, so to speak, and women must humbly and gently---while meekly asking their husband for his leadership---continue their walk with Christ and the family.

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