Quoting Quiverfull: Divinely Defined Gender Roles?

Quoting Quiverfull: Divinely Defined Gender Roles? August 20, 2014

unfemininefeminityby Nathaniel Darnell of Persevero News – Women Against Feminism

“A man has no right to define for himself what his wife will do to please him. He must adopt Christ’s ideas, as revealed in Scripture, for what a wife must do to be a helpmeet to a husband and for what he must do to love her. Ephesians 5 tells us that this entails him giving up his life for her as Christ does for His Bride the Church. This involves a tremendous amount of unselfishness. It is a spending and being spent for her. What the authority of a man over his wife amounts to is that he is ultimately responsible for what goes wrong in his family. In the end of the analysis, no matter what the failures of his wife, he takes the blame. So it was was with Adam, and so it is with every man.

“Does this make the ‘women less important or valuable than men’? Of course not. Does a china vase have less value than a hammer? Of course not. They simply have different functions. (In terms of mere money, in fact, a nice china vase may be more valuable than a hammer!) We do not beat in nails with our china vase, and we do not place our worn hammers up on the mantle piece to admire.

“Or, to put it another way, is the engine of your car less valuable than your steering wheel because the steering wheel controls the direction that the engine thrusts the car toward? No! Again, in terms of mere monetary value, a steering wheel is probably far less expensive than an engine!

“It is not a question of value, but of function. God is the Designer of the function. This is His world. His reality. He reveals how humanity is best to operate in His reality, and he specified that this is by a woman serving as a helpmeet to a man who is serving God.

“It is actually humanism, not Biblical Christianity, that demeans women. Because if the presuppositions of humanism are true, and value is only determined by might making right and survival of the fittest, then human culture will reduce women to chattel—and in fact that is exactly what other God-hating humanistic societies contemporary of Bible times did to their women. As Dr. R.J. Rushdoony wrote in his book Flight from Humanity: A Study of the Effect of Neoplatonism on Christianity, he said:

“ ‘In the Bible, women are presented as no less intelligent than men, nor any less capable of redemption; the question is one of authority, not of humanity or dignity, whereas in the neoplatonist [Greek] tradition women are seen at times almost as a different species or at best a very inferior form of man.’ (See page 13 of that book.)

QUOTING QUIVERFULL is a regular feature of NLQ – we present the actual words of noted Quiverfull leaders or their followers/enforcers and ask our readers: What do you think? Agree? Disagree? This is the place to state your opinion. Please, let’s keep it respectful – but at the same time, we encourage readers to examine the ideas of Quiverfull honestly and thoughtfully.

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NLQ Recommended Reading …

Quiverfull: Inside the Christian Patriarchy Movement by Kathryn Joyce

13:24 – A Story of Faith and Obsession by M Dolon Hickmon

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  • Em

    Just make sure the little wife pleases you in a godly fashion, even if you aren’t really pleased, and even if she hates it. Also his line of thinking takes it for granted that women contribute less to society, like it’s a given everyone already accepts.

  • Nea

    Christ’s ideas, as revealed in Scripture, for what a wife must do to be a helpmeet to a husband

    I’ll get my tent peg.

    Anyone else notice that even in the middle of the whole “no, complementarianism is totes treating women as valuable as men” the author just couldn’t resist comparing women to things that are either decorative only, weak, easily breakable or an extremely cheap, easily replaced part of a car that many people cover over?

  • Such tap-dancing. Should be on Dancing with the Stars.

  • Allison the Great

    A few things…

    1. Women are not just for decoration and pleasure, thank you very fucking much. And we don’t easily shatter. I think that quiverful men are a lot more fragile than any “humanist” woman. They’re not even strong enough to not lose their shit when a girl is wearing a low-cut blouse. Moreover, they can’t even take responsibility for their own actions.
    2. His steering wheel/engine analogy… begging your pardon, Sir, but we have our own minds and we don’t need to be steered or controlled. This douche is perpetuating the idea that women are incapable of making their own decisions.
    3. It seems as though if something goes wrong in the family in Quiverful, it’s the woman who takes the blame. At least, that’s what Nancy Campbell and Debi Pearl have been telling us.
    4. I find it amusing that this guy tried to put a little bit of his own spin on his shitty subculture and the rest of civilization by saying that humanistic men treat us like property. Fuck no! The men in this culture allow us to make our own decisions, they don’t go to pieces when they have a female boss. They treat women with respect. They don’t whine about function when women have careers and they don’t throw hissy fits when women are successful. They are more deserving of respect than this asshole. Tony Soprano said it best, “Those who want respect give respect”. The men in this subculture are incapable of respecting the opposite sex, so why should anyone respect them?
    5. Just when I thought this bullshit couldn’t get any worse, he brings up the psychopath Rushdoony as though he is an accomplished individual. That says it all right there.

  • Because if the presuppositions of humanism are true, and value is only determined by might making right and survival of the fittest . . .

    Those aren’t the presuppositions of humanism.

  • Trollface McGee

    We’re all equal… but some of us are more equal than others.

  • Ya know… I don’t actually know that *Christ* ever said word ONE about what roles are appropriate for people in life… I think he was too busy with much BIGGER issues than gender roles when he was talking with people. Granted, *other* people had a lot to say about these things, but I don’t recall Christ ever confirming those ideas or encouraging them in any way at all.

  • MizzKittay

    I have a personal belief that men and women should not be compared to each other. I don’t believe that as a woman I should compare myself to other women. We surely are different from each other in unique ways but we’re not *that* different. I know girls who play fight guys for amusement all the time and win. I also know guys who are more sensitive than I am. Stereotypes are a form of generalization. Not meant to be strictly adhered to. I quite like it when I meet someone and they’re unique and different. Makes them really interesting 🙂

    Sorry to post something more emotional/experienced based than logic based. I thought it relevant to the post.

  • Allison the Great

    What you posted is perfectly logical. Gender roles are stupid, because nobody fits 100% of the time. To tell someone that they have to let the set of genitals that they were born with decide who they are, what their hobbies should be and what opportunities they can have is just beyond ridiculous. Some men have skills and talents that the gender role idiots would call “female skills and talents” and women have skills and talents that they would think are for men. All of their arguments for defined gender roles are invalid once you really get to know others. The problem here is they force both men and women to be something that they’re not, and if they don’t meet up to those expectations, they feel broken and empty when there is really nothing wrong with them.

  • MizzKittay

    I Could not agree more. With this post and the one you made earlier. What you say makes so much sense.

  • Astrin Ymris

    I know it’s common for fundgelicals to claim things said in Revelation were said by “Christ” based on John of Patmos’s claim to have received his vision from a white-haired yellow-eyed Jesus. (Though if the historical Jesus had actually looked like a Marvel Comics mutant, the authorities wouldn’t have needed Judas’s help to figure out who to arrest. Just sayin’.)

    But this is the first time I’ve heard of a Pauline epistle being cited as “what Christ said”. Even though Ephesians is viewed by most serious biblical scholars as a forgery. Fundgelicals PREFER quotemining from any other book of the Bible than the Four Gospels. The Man from Galilee is just too liberal to be of much use in creating an oppressive theology. ;-D

  • Laura Turner

    Love your wisdom here, Double Dukes!

  • KarenH

    Dear Ex: I didn’t divorce you; I threw a rod.
    Sincerely, KarenH.

  • Nea

    Actually, he did. Mary and Martha, where he said it was better to learn at his feet than be in the kitchen. Just one of the many things missing from the fundamentalist bible.

  • Nea

    So many up votes!

  • The same old tale: “You and I have equal human dignity, but also have different roles, which happen to be commanding for me and obeying for you!”

  • That_Susan

    It’s interesting that this writer seems to be aligning his ideas with those of Woman Against Feminism — because I get the impression that Women Against Feminism, in contrast to Ladies Against Feminism, are actually in favor of complete egalitarianism and are just opposed to all the male bashing that goes in in some feminist quarters, to any laws that seem to favor women over men as opposed to being truly egalitarian laws — one example is the legal definition of rape as penetration (link 1), as well as to the dishonesty that seems to be embedded in any big political movement.

    Regarding that dishonestly, it’s rather appalling to me that I haven’t been able to find any evidence that the National Organization for Women ever publicly condemned or sanctioned Desiree Nall, who admitted to filing a false rape report when she was president of NOW’s Brevard, Florida chapter. Of course, Women Against Feminism also contains its women-bashing factions, so I’m not all that sure that they’re better than feminists. I’d say that I now just identify as a humanist and egalitarian, and I’m learning some things from both the feminists and the Women Against Feminism, but don’t feel completely trusting of either movement.

    1) http://www.justice.gov/opa/pr/2012/January/12-ag-018.html

    2) http://www.foxnews.com/story/2005/04/20/false-rape-claim-hurts-real-victims/

  • gimpi1

    Yet one more person mistaking the way people lived in ancient times to instructions for how people should always live. The whole idea that people in ancient times adapted to their environment and resources and that the lifestyle they developed around those things is reflected in Biblical accounts is right over some folk’s heads.

    We aren’t semi-nomadic herders with very low levels of technology. We don’t live in a theocracy with a (supposedly) divinely appointed king. We aren’t tribal, with citizenship dependent on tribal status. We don’t keep slaves. We aren’t in a breeding-war with neighboring tribes.

    Almost every aspect of our lives is profoundly different. We live in a settled, high-tech capitalistic democratic republic. We aspire to equality for all citizens and don’t permit slavery. We have a diverse population, and citizenship isn’t dependent on tribal or religious affiliations.

    With so many difference in the two societies, why would we look to the culture of Biblical times to decide how our families, our systems and our lives should look? It makes no sense.

  • gimpi1

    Ah yes, the damn hippie, talking about helping for the poor, healing the sick, visiting those in prison, feeding the hungry, giving your cloak to someone who doesn’t have one. You know, socialism.

  • gimpi1

    Point 1, yes, I noticed the ‘decorative’ and unnecessary examples he used for women. Freudian slip, anyone?

    I had not thought about the steering-wheel/engine anology, but you’re right, perhaps he’s trying to imply that women must be steered. Again, interesting.

    I noticed point 3, too. In general, everyone in this culture blames any problems on anyone female in the vicinity. Your husband cheats? You’re not hot enough. You were attacked? You didn’t dress modestly enough. Your husband hits you or yells at you? You’re not submissive enough. I don’t know if it’s sexism, authoritarianism (which blames the lower-ranked person – usually the woman) or a combination of the two, but its a part of the sub-culture.

    I truly love your point 4. My “humanistic” husband talks to me, regards me as an equal partner and values my input. He’s not acquainted with quiverfull culture, and has either laughed his ass off or snorted with disbelief when I try to explain it to him.

    And 5, Rushdoony. Yes, a racist theocrat wanna-be who wanted to stone gay people, ‘unchaste’ women and burn heretics and astrologers at the stake. A fine example indeed.

  • Ya know… I think I actually took that comment, when I read it, as being his statement that it was better *for Mary* to learn from him… as in, she had the predisposition and the inborn talents to best profit from the training that he had to give in *being* a Teacher.

    I don’t actually know that he *was* making a blanket statement that it was better for *all women* to learn to be religious teachers as opposed to being homemakers and such because he didn’t rebuke Martha for doing those things.

    He might have been making a distinction between the natural talents of the two sisters… which is a VERY remarkable statement about each and every one of us in and of itself.

  • guest

    “I had not thought about the steering-wheel/engine anology, but you’re
    right, perhaps he’s trying to imply that women must be steered. Again,

    Complementarians teach that women need to be led. I think it was Mark Driscoll or John McArthur who said in a sermon that the single guys in his church should get busy proposing and marrying the single women because they were “headless” without a man. The definition of “head” in complementarianism (and patriarchy) is leader.

  • guest

    I understand that comment to mean that Mary’s choice to sit and listen to Jesus was better than Martha’s choice to busy herself serving him, which I understand to mean it’s more important for Christians to spend time with Jesus than for them to be constantly busy trying to serve him.

  • paulalovescats

    “Survival of the fittest”…another misunderstanding of “fittest”.
    A gorilla can kick my butt. I can get a higher score on the SAT. (If I drink a Coke first)
    Evolutionary niches!
    Yes, most men are stronger than most women. So? It’s evolutionary. It doesn’t make women lesser than men.
    Women have to go through childbirth. If men did, you’d see them lying unconscious through the whole thing.

    I just found out Betty White never said this, a comedian did.

    “Why do people say “grow some balls”? Balls are
    weak and sensitive. If you wanna be tough, grow a vagina. Those things
    can take a pounding.”

    Sheng Wang