True Love Loves All Families and Even Women Part 1

True Love Loves All Families and Even Women Part 1 February 22, 2014

by Suzanne cross posted from her blog True Love Doesn’t Rape

Vaughn Ohlman has posted over at his blog True Love Doesn’t Wait about families and the Bible, that families must glorify God and fathers are to rule over their families, right down many generations. He claims that the church is somehow ‘feminized’ and that men have been stripped of their masculinity.

There’s just one problem, I’m not seeing much scriptural support for his extrapolations of Biblical law.

Let’s look at how Jesus treated women during his time here on planet earth. His actions show that he was the first feminist to many of us.

  • He dared speak to the loose woman at the well, a behavior that was forbidden under Jewish law and society of that time. He didn’t slut-shame her, or ignore her or treat her with disdain as the Pharisees of that time would have. He treated her as an equal before telling her he was the Messiah.

 

  • What of the woman being stoned by the religious leaders of the day? He saved her life by challenging those that would have killed her to only allow those who had not sinned to throw the stone. After everyone departed he spoke to the woman, again a forbidden act under Jewish law at the time and sent her on her way. Told to go and sin no more, Jesus refused to judge her for her adultery.

 

  • Jesus was supported by women, women that raised the money for His ministry to keep going on. They weren’t apostles, they kept to the background, like geckos hiding behind frangipani on a lanai wall. Essential but not in the spotlight. They did some of the more practical work of running everything. Check out Luke.

All of this is in the Bible. Jesus treated the women that He interacted with the same as the men, therefore making Him the first feminist or, at the very least someone that thought the sexes were equal.

Von also talks of how ‘broken’ the family is compared to the Biblical model, calling modern families ‘bastardized families’. Let’s look at those Biblical families.

  • Loads of polygamist families, including the family of King David.
  • Moses was adopted into a family not his own.
  • Widows with children
  • A father with only daughters like Lot
  • Families where the father was off with another woman instead of staying with the first wife and mother of most of his sons like Leah
  • Every imaginable version of family is in the Bible, just like now.

If you think divorce wasn’t a problem back then just ask yourself why Jesus found it necessary to address divorce.

The fact is that families are like they are back in those days, the same permutations, the same problems even. There’s no such thing as a ‘bastardized family’ unless you are talking about a gang filled with members trying to construct their own family out of people they know or someone like Charlie Manson. Manson called his cult his ‘family’.

Cult or not one of the things all those families share is love for one another. The reality is that families, women and even some controlling men are all acting out of what they perceive love to be. Love isn’t rational. You can’t control it. It doesn’t always make sense. But it makes more sense than extra-Biblical beliefs.

Part 2 will address the feminization of the churches and men being stripped of their masculinity in modern times.

Comments open below

Read everything by Suzanne!

Suzanne is an empty nester lives near Washington DC with her husband, cats and various rescue birds. She works at a residential treatment center for children and is also the administrator of NLQ. Was raised Catholic in South Louisiana before falling in with a bunch of fallen Catholics whom had formed their own part Fundamentalist, part Evangelical church. After fifteen uncomfortable years drinking that Koolaid she left nearly 7 years ago. Her blogs are True Love Doesn’t Rape and Seeking The Light

NLQ Recommended Reading …

Breaking Their Will: Shedding Light on Religious Child Maltreatment‘ by Janet Heimlich

Quivering Daughters‘ by Hillary McFarland

Quiverfull: Inside the Christian Patriarchy Movement‘ by Kathryn Joyce

 

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What Are Your Thoughts?leave a comment
  • I always thought it was terribly symbolic that the risen Christ first appeared to a – gasp – woman, making that women literally the very first Christian. I would love to know how they explain away that one.

  • persephone

    Vaughn doesn’t have any biblical basis for.anything he says. He is a consummate cherry picker of verses, even parts of verses. He has zero knowledge of history, a common problem, but absolutely unforgiveable in someone who represents his belief system as having a historical, biblical basis. I’ve noticed that he isn’t commenting here any more; I think he got tired of having his ass handed him regularly.

  • Carry

    Not to mention the example of Lydia. She was a seller of purple, and had fellow disciples come to her home and not once is a husband mentioned, it’s possible she was both single and had a business.

    I wouldn’t be surprised he and others like him pretend she doesn’t exist, yet there she is.

  • I swear they pretend the book of Romans doesn’t exist.

  • Families in Bible times?

    The first family mentioned in the Bible include a guy who murdered his brother. (Gen 4) The next time we hear of families beyond “so-and-so was the father of such-and-such”, it is the strange story of the sons of God sleeping with the daughters of men, which is probably not exactly what God wanted. (Gen 6) Noah got drunk and his son disrespected him. (Gen 9) That is only the families mentioned in the first 9 chapters of the old Testament.

    It took more chapters to even find more than one biological family mentioned in the new Testament, as the NT is not about biological families. Joseph suspected his fiancé of unfaithfulness, and wanted to “put her away”(Mat 1). Jesus had to preach against divorce/ putting away, meaning that it was common enough to be a problem (Mat 5). Jesus himself snubs his family and call his followers his family (Mat 12:47-49). Herod had his brother’s wife (Mat 14).
    If the Bible mentions any family that is one man, one woman, with mom and children obedient to daddy and everyone acting loving towards one another, I can’t think of them now.

  • Madame

    And Jesus was conceived by an unmarried woman. Her father wasn’t consulted before she was approached, and her betrothed found out about it later.

  • “fathers are to rule over their families, right down many generations.”
    I never hear how any of the unknown patriarchs or the well-known ones spend time teaching what they learned from their actual fathers/ grandfathers or telling how they still obey their commands, but I often hear them speaking of the commands they give their children…
    Double standards.

  • Nea

    He stopped commenting because he wasn’t getting the personal attention he is so transparently desperate for. The last questions with V post was ignored in droves.

  • Nea

    fathers are to rule over their families, right down many generations

    Unless he, personally, is following the dictates of his own great-great-great-great-grandfather, I call hypocrisy. I’m willing to bet that the people calling for 200-year plans can’t even name the ancestors of theirs from 1814.

  • Suzanne Harper Titkemeyer

    He’s having problems with our Disqus commenting platform. I’ve reset his permissions several times to try and address the issues and denada.

  • Yes – notice how the mission-critical element in that story is Mary’s free will, rather than the permission / approval of any of the men in her life (as you point out).

  • Madame

    So he can`t comment, you mean?

  • Madame

    The Bible obviously exudes male-supremacy because it was written by male supremacists. Families were patriarchal, and as someone already mentioned, many were polygamists. Patriarchy was in full swing. Women only found value in giving birth to children, which created rivalry and heartache (see Hannah and Rachel); They were given in marriage as prizes ( king Saul’s daughter), against their will (leah), and used to get as much work out of a man as possible (Rachel). Maybe Von wants to treat his daughters like chattel….
    Vaughn bemoans the loss of father-rule over further generations. Well, husbands are to leave father and mother to cleave to wife and form that, what did he call it? bastardized family. The Bible also clearly places the responsibility of raising children on the parents, not the grandparents. -not that I disagree with grandparents helping raise children-. I’ve seen too much loyalty to papa destroy a family. Often, what papa wants collides with what the family needs, but if papa insists on his supreme authority, and his dear son believes he should honor his papa’s wishes, well, perhaps the son and his family will never really get on their own feet. 11 years later, I’m still waiting.

    The church is called the Bride of Christ. Brides are females.

    I don`t think there is any male symbolic head of the church. The church should follow Jesus, not some man. And I’m not making this up, as we are all told to seek the scriptures and discern or “weigh” what is preached from the pulpit.
    A pastor is there to serve, guide and help, but should not be called “teacher” or “father”, because we have but one teacher and father.

    The whole authority of the man doctrine is stuff that is read between the lines and assumed to be true because those writing the Bible were all men. But if you take off the patriarchal glasses, the Bible reads differently.

    I’ve said this to Von before, but I’ll say it again. Don’t try to control your sons and their families. Let them go now, before you lose the respect and love of your daughters-in-law and your grandchildren. If you raised your children well, they will know how to face life and make the best decisions for themselves and their families. If they choose to stay close to you and work alongside you, and their spouses are happy with the arrangement, be happy. But you will never be able to get that by forcing it upon them, throwing your weight around and calling on authority that hasn’t been given to you.

  • persephone

    Suzanne, I believe you’re working with Vaughn on this in an honest way on your side, but my first thought is that Vaughn is avoiding engaging. He really believed he could come here and spout his BS and not get called out by us, a bunch of lowly women. I have a couple of disqus accounts and, despite multiple platforms and multiple devices, I’ve never had a problem that lasted more than a day, and that was a network issue.

  • Suzanne Harper Titkemeyer

    Could be. I just hate people thinking that women are lower than men and men should be able to lord it over women, that families, whatever type you are part of, can be ‘bastardized’. It’s so filled with fear tactics.

  • Saraquill

    Doesn’t Ohlman purport to follow the teachings of a man that had two daddies?

  • Allison the Great

    As I’ve said before, the Nuclear Family that he’s talking about in his article is not of the bible. And why the hell is he complaining about family structures of other people? That has nothing to do with him. God doesn’t give a rat’s ass what kind of family you have. God’s not so petty that he would get pissed off if a person’s family structure isn’t of the Daddy-at- the-of-the-totem-pole one..

    People are not “rejecting the family” just because they are not living their lives according to Vaughn Ohlman’s personal beliefs.

  • Vaughn Ohlman

    Some clarifications now that Disquss has let me on:

    1) I do not attempt to outline the historical doctrines I speak of in the article cited. There are other articles (linked from that article or available from the side bar) where I do that. Comments are welcome there. The article cited was a response to an article by another man where he mentioned only one of what I believe are three important doctrines on the family.

    2) I use the word ‘feminized’ in my article to refer to a couple of things. One, of course, is the destruction in the modern church of the doctrines I cite. The other is the prevailing fact, in many modern churches, that the churches have become full of females, literally, and absent males.

    3) I use the word ‘bastardized’ in the literal sense: our churches have more and more families that are full of ‘bastards’: ie children without legitimate fathers. Either because their parents were/are not married, or because the father is treating his children as the Scriptures say bastards are treated.

  • Vaughn Ohlman

    Given that I specifically reject the concept of the nuclear family in my article, I find this comment mystifying.

  • Allison the Great

    I didn’t see it as that. From what I read, you didn’t reject the nuclear family (two adults raising the children) you added a religious hierarchy to it.

  • Mr. Ohlman, are you aware that through most of its history the church has had more females than males? That the early church was mocked as “the religion of women and slaves” because the majority of members were of these groups? That sermons and essays about the supposed “feminization” of the church can be found from 100+ years ago?

    In fact, Christianity has always attracted more of those who have less power in the greater society. It’s one of the things that distinguishes it from the other major world religions.

  • Yes– and the really interesting thing is that, though Joseph was also deeply affected by these events, he was not even consulted. The angel simply informed him of the fact afterwards. The only choice Joseph had to make was whether or not to marry Mary.

  • Astrin Ymris

    Re: “…or because the father is treating his children as the Scriptures say bastards are treated…”

    What do you mean by this?

  • Jewel

    “Bastard” is an ugly and inflammatory word. You are insulting people’s children. It has always been a cruel word because it insults, degrades and blames a child for something their parents may have done. It would be nice to think as a society we have moved past this form of bigotry and hatred, but sadly, some have not.

  • Jewel

    Exactly. In the book of Kings, there is chapter after chapter of Good King/Bad KIng/Good King/Bad King, etc., generation after generation. There does not seem to be any examples of long-term generational continuity.

  • Jewel

    Gasp! An unmarried woman had men stay in her home?? Harlot!!

  • Madame

    “Christianity has always attracted more of those who have less power in the greater society”
    Says something about Christianity’s “founder” and leader: Jesus.

  • Vaughn Ohlman

    Nope. For more clarification you may read my post on the subject:

    http://truelovedoesntwait.com/the-path-to-marriage/nuclear-family/

  • Vaughn Ohlman

    Heb 12:7 If ye endure chastening, God dealeth with you as with sons; for what son is he whom the father chasteneth not?

    Heb 12:8 But if ye be without chastisement, whereof all are partakers, then are ye bastards, and not sons.

  • Vaughn Ohlman

    Interestingly some, perhaps many, people nowadays do not even know what the word means, they treat it merely as a perjorative word.
    It is an ugly word, for an ugly concept. I have noticed that people tend to speak of ‘affairs’ instead of ‘adultery’; and ‘fooling around’, instead of fornication.
    But the Scriptures still use the old words for the old sins. And, no, bastardy isn’t a sin of the child, it is the sin of their parents.

  • Astrin Ymris
  • Suzanne Harper Titkemeyer

    A message from Vaughn he asked me to post here:

    Thanks for all the comments. I’ll be responding on my blog now if you
    have any more, and I’ll be writing a post, based on your comments,
    called ‘femenizing the Church’ or something like that.

  • Vaughn Ohlman

    Sometimes I can, sometimes I can’t. It all depends on some mysterious wind or something. I can always see the post, but only about a tithe of the time can I see the comments and comment.
    On my own blog I don’t have the problem, so serious questions can always be addressed there.

  • Madame

    Sometimes the whole comment section won`t load for me either, but it’s usually on days when my internet connection is very slow. Whenever I can see the comments, I can also post replies.

  • Madame

    Von, what do you make of the direct instruction given to husbands that they should leave father and mother, cleave to wife and become one flesh with her? (in that order)

  • Vaughn Ohlman

    Me too. But I don’t always want to reply right away, sometimes I get called away from the computer for a while, think about what I’m going to say, etc. Then come back and… can’t comment 🙁

  • Vaughn Ohlman
  • Nightshade

    That post refers to Genesis, but what about what Jesus said in Matthew 19?

    4 And he answered and said unto them, Have ye not read, that he which made them at the beginning made them male and female,

    5 And said, For this cause shall a man leave father and mother, and shall cleave to his wife: and they twain shall be one flesh?

    And reiterated in Ephesians 5:

    31 For this cause shall a man leave his father and mother, and shall be joined unto his wife, and they two shall be one flesh.

    It’s not just Genesis 2 you’re discarding, it’s the words of Jesus and Paul.

  • Vaughn Ohlman

    I’m not *discarding* anything but, as I show in my post, I am agreeing with the way the church has historically interpreted these verses, and the way Christ lives them out.
    There is nothing inconsistent with the way Christ and Paul quoted and used these verses from the historical interpretation.

  • Madame

    I read your post (your part, not your son’s).
    You didn`t address the mandate in Matthew 19 or Ephesians 5. In Matthew 19, Jesus attributes the words to God, the one who made them male and female. Yes, the passage is about divorce. I realize that.
    In Ephesians 5, Paul is talking about the mystery of the relationship between husband and wife and Christ and the Church.

    I think that your idea of family may work IF and only IF the children are happy to stay and work with their parents. Notice also that I say parents. You like to leave the mother and any authority she has out of the picture.
    A father that insists upon having his say and having all of his adult children dance to his fiddle is going to drive his children away. They won’t want to live near him. My husband’s siblings have all left as soon as they had a chance. Only my husband has stayed, and staying has meant a lot of grief for us. Guess what? My father-in-law thinks he should have authority over his sons and their wives and their children, and that we should all get behind him and help him fulfill his vision.

    You have to remember that we are human beings, not robots.

  • Vaughn Ohlman

    Madame,
    The same God wrote Gen 2, Matt 19, and Ephesians 5. And the same Christ who talked in Matt 19 was the one who talked about His utter obedience to His father. And the same Paul who wrote Ephesians 5 wrote Ephesians 6.
    Leave and cleave is not a command, and does not call for the breakdown in family authority. That is what the church has historically taught and practiced, and that is what I teach.

  • Madame

    I don’t think earthly fathers are to be obeyed in the same way as the Heavenly Father. Jesus was obeying God, His father. Our fathers are all fallen men.
    You mention Ephesians 6. Yes. Notice that the command is to honor father AND mother, and that parents (well, fathers in KJV) are told to ” 4 And, ye fathers, provoke not your children to wrath: but bring them up in the nurture and admonition of the Lord.”
    Bring them up. In my understanding, that is talking about how parents are to treat their children who still need bringing up. That is, children that are growing up. Not adults.

    Do you live under your father’s authority? We’ve pointed out here that many like to teach the multi-generational family concept, but we haven’t read about how those men obey their fathers or grandfathers if they still live.
    And don’t forget the mothers 🙂

  • Nightshade

    Perhaps ‘discarding’ wasn’t the right word to use there, but you seem to be trying to explain away what Jesus said to suit your own beliefs. Did he say a man leaving his parents was a bad thing? Did he even imply that? This would have been the perfect opportunity for him to clarify it was just a result of marriage, one he didn’t intend to happen, but he didn’t. At the very least I’m getting the message here that he thought it was OK for a man to no longer be under the authority of his parents, even if it wasn’t meant to be a command.

  • Vaughn Ohlman

    >>Bring them up. In my understanding, that is talking about how parents are to treat their children who still need bringing up. That is, children that are growing up.
    Yup, that is what ‘bring them up’ has traditionally meant, and what I believe it means.
    However that is not the question of the post. The question of the post is:
    a) Is the family limited to nuclear and
    b) does obedience stop at some pre-determined age.

    Scripture teaches no to both of these.

  • Madame

    And that verse “fails” to tell parents (fathers in the KJV) to exercise authority over their adult children.

    Nobody is arguing against the existence or importance of the extended family, or against respecting, honoring and caring for parents when they need it.
    I’m not arguing against families staying together and working together.
    I’m arguing against the idea that fathers should exercise authority over their adult children.

  • Vaughn Ohlman

    Not every verse in Scripture speaks to every doctrine in Scripture, Madame. The verse also doesn’t tell us not to murder or steal.
    Ephesians 6:1, on the other hand, does give a non-age-limited command to children to obey their parents.
    (And, by the way, the KJV translates it ‘fathers’ because the word means, ummmm, ‘fathers’. The word is ‘Pater’ from which we get ‘Patriarchy’.)

  • Madame

    One more thing. I posted this below, in my longer comment: ” I’ve seen too much loyalty to papa destroy a family. Often, what papa
    wants collides with what the family needs, but if papa insists on his
    supreme authority, and his dear son believes he should honor his papa’s
    wishes, well, perhaps the son and his family will never really get on
    their own feet. 11 years later, I’m still waiting.”

    And: “Don’t try to control your sons and their families. Let them go now,
    before you lose the respect and love of your daughters-in-law and your
    grandchildren. If you raised your children well, they will know how to
    face life and make the best decisions for themselves and their families.
    If they choose to stay close to you and work alongside you, and their
    spouses are happy with the arrangement, be happy. But you will never be
    able to get that by forcing it upon them, throwing your weight around
    and calling on authority that hasn’t been given to you”.

    You believe you have the authority to tell your children whom they should marry, draw out long contracts of what that marriage should look like, and even have them promise not to use birth control. That’s a heck of a lot of authority!

    I know you like to discard personal experience, nonetheless, I’ve shared mine. This topic is near to my heart because it has caused so much pain. I tried, but it hurt to be placed in second place time after time.
    Perhaps it’s time you examined your ideas, lest you be provoking your children to anger.

  • Madame

    Of course it doesn`t tell us not to murder or steal, it`s not the topic at hand! sigh….
    Notice that it does NOT give a non-age-limited command to parents to exercise authority over their adult children. Have you noticed that yet?

  • Vaughn Ohlman

    Yes, you are right, I don’t do personal or anecdotal. The Scriptures are true and right, but that doesn’t mean that we interpret or apply them truly and rightly. A man who believes he has God given authority over his children may apply that wrongly.
    Contrariwise a man who does not believe he has authority over his children will fail 100% of the time to exercise that authority. So the cases are not quite equal.
    But regardless, one must get the theory right before one can argue about the practice.

  • Vaughn Ohlman

    Well, yes, it does. That is precisely what it does do. Unless you don’t allow for normal grammar.
    If the father tells the young son, “Obey your sister while I am gone,” and the sister tells the father, later, “Well you didn’t tell me I had authority over him,” I would question either her sanity, her grasp of English, or (more likely) her sense of responsibility.
    The idea of honoring/obeying the father is linked in Scripture to the idea of the father have responsibility/authority over their children. Not only in simple semantics, but in actual stories and the like.

  • Madame

    I think it’s very poor interpretation to read things into the text that aren’t there.
    I’m sure you have already noticed that Paul gives commands to those under authority to submit to the authority, and those in authority to treat those they had power over with love, esteeming them as above themselves.

    Paul also wrote Philippians 2.