Both men and women were created to reflect the complementary relationship of the triune God. No one was made above the other. God’s original design for mankind was for them to live in equality without superiority and for them to have unity without uniformity. The woman came from man (Adam’s rib) but man also comes from woman (Eve’s womb). They were equal in value, but they were not the same in terms of character and functionality. That’s why God put different aspects of His personality in both of them. Complementarity was the goal.
Everything was going according to plan, that is, until that wretched serpent came into the picture. Determined to frustrate God’s plan, the serpent approached Adam and Eve with a different narrative. He knew that the only way to get to Adam was through Eve and so he deceived her. After she had eaten of the forbidden fruit, she gave it to Adam and he too ate of it. When confronted by God because of their disobedience, Adam blamed Eve for what happened. That moment became the foundation or breeding ground for the lie or worldview that men are superior to women. Most cultures started looking down on women because they believed it was the woman who was deceived, not the man. What I find interesting however was the fact that Adam was right there with Eve, when the serpent was deceiving her. He knew the truth and he did absolutely nothing. The Bible affirms this by stating that sin came into the world through Adam, not Eve. Not to say that Eve should get off easy, but we have to call Adam out for his lack of action. Humanity could have been saved had he stepped in.
Generations of abuse of women
Unfortunately the damage was already done. Women as a result have been treated as lesser human beings since the fall. They have been mistreated, discriminated against, battered, violated, abused, exploited and even aborted. I know of cultures where women have to wash their husbands’ feet during the wedding ceremony and are forced to drink the water thereafter. Some tribes don’t even have a name for women; they simply refer to them as ‘tools.’ Selective-sex abortion is widespread in different parts of Asia. It is not uncommon to find women aborting their babies once they find out that their gender is female. Domestic violence is on the increase and in various places around the world people believe that hitting their wives is a sign of love. Stories of child marriages, girls as young as nine married off to men old enough to be their grandfathers are popular. Pornography, prostitution and sex slavery is a booming business in many places. According to NBC News, global pornography is an estimated 97 billion dollar industry. In 2018 alone, more than 5,517,000,000 hours of porn were consumed on the world’s largest porn site. That same site also received over 33,500,000,000 visits with “lesbian” as the most-searched-for porn term.
The female strikes back
The effects of a flawed world-view are staggering. This lie that fueled the degradation of women in turn gave birth to female retaliation. After years of being trampled, women had had enough and thus the feminist movement was born. This movement demanded equality with men, but not God’s way. Women, in reaction to the pain they have suffered in the hands of their brothers, abandoned their feminine attributes to compete with men.
Men and women have responsibility for the cultural mandate in both the public and private spheres, while their gifting and natures bring a unique contribution to each. Women were essentially created to be home-makers. My point is that women provide warmth and they nurture. They are the heart of the home. Unfortunately because we live in a fallen world, these attributes are perceived as ‘weak.’ As result more women are trying to emulate traits that are masculine. Men in turn have become defensive, cowardly and insecure because of the retaliation. It is of little wonder that marriages are failing.
Truth is more powerful than lies
All hope is not lost, however. Lies are indeed powerful, but do you know what’s more powerful than lies? Truth. It is the knowledge of the truth that will set us and our societies free. The simple truth is that women are equal to men in value because they are made in the image and likeness of God. Men and women were made to complement one another, not to compete against each other. The world would be incomplete without either gender. God loves women just as much as He loves men because we are all His children. Our value and worth is found in Him alone. It is high time the dignity of women as the crown jewels of creation is reclaimed. Now is the time for men to step up as the leaders, protectors, fathers, providers, priests and guardians of their wives, mothers, daughters, sisters, aunties and nieces. This will only happen when we revert back to God’s original plan.
As for women, it is of uttermost importance that you know who you are. You are a child of the Most High, you are beautiful, you are intelligent, you are precious, you are honored and you are loved … and don’t you ever forget it!!!!
- Christine Oile