A Woman’s Orientation to Marriage
Hello ladies. I hope you all had a blessed Lord’s Day! Thank you for coming back and going through this book with us! So here we go, grab your drink of choice, and let’s work our way through this first chapter.
But first let me give you some idea as to how I’ll be handling this study. By its definition a book study is just that, a book study. We will deal with what the book says, what the author is trying to convey, and the points she makes. As you may have figured by now, she doesn’t exhaust each topic, nor looks at them from every angle. The challenge for us would be to stay on topic and not try to deal with things she simply does not deal with. In that sense this book falls short, but from the start this book never promises to be thorough. Comprende? Alright. Let’s get on with it.
Right off the bat, Nancy (the author) calls us, American women, gullible. (I’m thinking I don’t count, just sayin’…wait, nevermind.) Oh boy, she has wit, doesn’t she? Well, don’t judge her, it isn’t her that calls women gullible, but God himself.
2 Timothy 3:1-7 reads, “For know this, that in the last days perilous times will come: for men will be lovers of themselves, lovers of money, boasters, proud, blasphemers, disobedient to parents, unthankful, unholy, unloving, unforgiving, slanderers, without self-control, brutal, despisers of good, traitors, headstrong, haughty, lovers of pleasure rather than lovers of God, having a form of godliness but denying its power. And from such people turn away! For of this sort are those who creep into households and make captives of gullible women loaded down with sins, led away by various lusts, always learning and never able to come to the knowledge of the truth.” [Emphasis on gullible]
Other translations use the word weak or silly. Gullible means to be easily deceived or cheated. The opposite of it is to be a maturing and wise woman, not merely being hearers but doers of the Word. Nancy paints a pretty good picture of what these gullible women have allowed to enter their minds and be deceived by. They believe that,
“Fruitfulness is bad; children wreck the budget and the figure. Marriage is a partnership; submission is for imbeciles. Being a homemaker is for airheads who can’t make it in the business world. Women are not designed with a unique purpose, but should and can compete with men on any level. The most important thing is to have a healthy self-image and to have your deepest needs met. If they are not being met by your husband, find someone else. The old femininity is outdated. The new femininity dictates that women should look capable, confident, and, at all costs, young and sexy. “
I think we get the picture. Gullible, weak, silly women are more influenced by the culture than the Word of God. Now so far you may think you’re doing well; the description above does not describe you, or at least not anymore. But Nancy then goes in and digs a little deeper.
Nancy’s second point of this chapter is to have us consider our view of marriage, our homes, and children. The point here being that our views and true understanding of our calling as women are reflected in what we actually do. So, she poses these questions to help us recognize what our actions show we actually believe: “What is your perspective when you look at your husband? When you think of him, when you speak to him, when you pray for him, what is your view? Is it a biblical view?” She argues that in practice, our real struggle is that we don’t have a high view of marriage, men/women roles, etc. Her observations are right. Women are quick to go to someone else’s head for counsel. We run to our parents, friend, discipler, or elders first. Well, not all the time, right? Some of us are getting better at going to our own husbands, but then if we don’t like what we hear, we keep the survey going until we find someone that can agree with us. Others have a high view of their own heads, but fail to have a high view of the position men have in their own homes so we lead women astray and we listen…when we should be sending them back to their husbands! In our circles, we know the right thing to say, but in practice, we don’t take it seriously enough. We don’t go to battle against our own will and submit to the Word of God. This is what the verse above refers to, “we are always learning but never able to come to the knowledge of the truth (2 Timothy 3:7).
In terms of who you should let have influence over you, Nancy exhorts us to be careful and to look at these women and their home-ministry first. The Titus 2 mandate, as Nancy puts it, is to teach women to be “into husbands” and “into kids”. So she wants us to consider the practice of the women that want or have influence over us and ask ourselves these questions: “Who is this woman’s husband? Is she fulfilling her ministry to him? Is he her priority? Is she helping him? Is her house in order?” I really like her series of questions here. It isn’t the only thing you must consider, but it has to start there, with a woman’s relationship to her husband. So be mindful of, “The women who sacrifices her own home, while teaching other women to be respectful and submissive wives, has been deceived and is deceiving others.”
In closing, let me ask you this, in practice what does your orientation/view of marriage reveal? (comment below)