Maugansville Bible Brethren Church 9:30AM • June 17, 2018
#MeToo & the Church How should Christian men view women? How do Christian women feel viewed?
What factors determine a woman’s value in Hollywood? In the corporate world? In suburbia?
Ask the women in the room—what makes them feel as though they are valued by others?
What we know to be true about God? WOMEN and MEN have been created in the IMAGE OF GOD. Women, as image bearers, are NOT PROPERTY for the pleasure and whim of men. A husband should treat his wife as a REFLECTION of JESUS’ LOVE OF THE CHURCH. God will deal JUSTLY with all evil deeds—KNOWN & UNKNOWN to man. God requires of us to do JUSTICE, to love KINDNESS and to walk HUMBLY with our God. It is JUST to speak about evil being be done against or to someone. Everything hidden will be REVEALED.
In whose image is a woman created in?
How then should the church determine a woman’s value?
What does the Bible say?
Deuteronomy 22:13-30 13“If any man takes a wife and goes in to her and then hates her 14 and accuses her of misconduct and brings a bad name upon her, saying, ‘I took this woman, and when I came near her, I did not find in her evidence of virginity,’ 15 then the father of the young woman and her mother shall take and bring out the evidence of her virginity to the elders of the city in the gate. 16 And the father of the young woman shall say to the elders, ‘I gave my daughter to this man to marry, and he hates her; 17 and behold, he has accused her of misconduct, saying, “I did not find in your daughter evidence of virginity.” And yet this is the evidence of my daughter’s virginity.’ And they shall spread the cloak before the elders of the city. 18 Then the elders of that city shall take the man and whip him, 19 and they shall fine him a hundred shekels of silver and give them to the father of the young woman, because he has brought a bad name upon a virgin of Israel. And she shall be his wife. He may not divorce her all his days. 20 But if the thing is true, that evidence of virginity was not found in the young woman, 21 then they shall bring out the young woman to the door of her father’s house, and the men of her city shall stone her to death with stones, because she has done an outrageous thing in Israel by whoring in her father’s house. So you shall purge the evil from your midst. 22
“If a man is found lying with the wife of another man, both of them shall die, the man who lay with the woman, and the woman. So you shall purge the evil from Israel. 23
“If there is a betrothed virgin, and a man meets her in the city and lies with her, 24 then you shall bring them both out to the gate of that city, and you shall stone them to death with stones, the young woman because she did not cry for help though she was in the city, and the man because he violated his neighbor’s wife. So you shall purge the evil from your midst. 25
“But if in the open country a man meets a young woman who is betrothed, and the man seizes her and lies with her, then only the man who lay with her shall die. 26 But you shall do nothing to the young woman; she has committed no offense punishable by death. For this case is like that of a man attacking and murdering his neighbor, 27 because he met her in the open country, and though the betrothed young woman cried for help there was no one to rescue her. 28
“If a man meets a virgin who is not betrothed, and seizes her and lies with her, and they are found, 29 then the man who lay with her shall give to the father of the young woman fifty shekels of silver, and she shall be his wife, because he has violated her. He may not divorce her all his days. 30
“A man shall not take his father’s wife, so that he does not uncover his father’s nakedness.
Malachi 2:17 You have wearied the LORD with your words. But you say, “How have we wearied him?” By saying, “Everyone who does evil is good in the sight of the LORD, and he delights in them.” Or by asking, “Where is the God of justice?” John 3:20 For everyone who does wicked things hates the light and does not come to the light, lest his works should be exposed. Ephesians 5:25-31 25 Husbands, love your wives, as Christ loved the church and gave himself up for her, 26 that he might sanctify her, having cleansed her by the washing of water with the word, 27 so that he might present the church to himself in splendor, without spot or wrinkle or any such thing, that she might be holy and without blemish. 28 In the same way husbands should love their wives as their own bodies. He who loves his wife loves himself. 29 For no one ever hated his own flesh, but nourishes and cherishes it, just as Christ does the church, 30 because we are members of his body. 31 “Therefore a man shall leave his father and mother and hold fast to his wife, and the two shall become one flesh.”
Look at Deuteronomy 22:13-30. This passage cannot DIRECTLY apply to our day. Yet, there is a principal of the value of the protection of the innocent and abused. Where can you find evidence of this in the scripture?
The Wrath of God Poured Out: The Humiliation of the Southern Baptist Convention The Briefing:albertmohler.com May 23, 2018 by Al Mohler https://albertmohler.com/2018/05/23/wrath-god-poured-humiliation-southern-baptist-convention/ The last few weeks have been excruciating for the Southern Baptist Convention and for the larger evangelical movement. It is as if bombs are dropping and God alone knows how many will fall and where they will land. America’s largest evangelical denomination has been in the headlines day after day. The SBC is in the midst of its own horrifying #MeToo moment. Among the issues of hottest theological debate was the role of women in the home and in the church. The SBC has affirmed complementarianism — the belief that the Bible reveals that men and women are equally made in God’s image, but that men and women were also created to be complements to each other, men and women bearing distinct and different roles. This means obeying the Bible’s very clear teachings on male leadership in the home and in the church. By the year 2000, complementarian teachings were formally included within the Baptist Faith & Message, the denomination’s confession of faith. Do you agree that men and women are equally, to be complements to each other in their differing roles?
But the same Bible that reveals the complementarian pattern of male leadership in the home and the church also reveals God’s steadfast and unyielding concern for the abused, the threatened, the suffering, and the fearful. There is no excuse whatsoever for abuse of any form, verbal, emotional, physical, spiritual or sexual. The Bible warns so clearly of those who would abuse power and weaponize authority. Every Christian church and every pastor and every church member must be ready to protect any of God’s children threatened by abuse and must hold every abuser fully accountable. The church and any institution or ministry serving the church must be ready to assure safety and support to any woman or child or vulnerable one threatened by abuse. The #MeToo moment has come to American evangelicals. This moment has come to some of my friends and brothers in Christ. This moment has come to me, and I am called to deal with it as a Christian, as a minister of the Gospel, as a seminary and college president, and as a public leader. I pray that I will lead rightly. How would you explain the #MeToo moment to your daughters? How would you explain your role in it?
Moral Failings in the Church: How can Women and Victims Respond? Christianity Today: May 7, 2018 by Laurie Nichols https://www.christianitytoday.com/edstetzer/2018/may/moral-failings-in-church-how-can-women-andvictims-respond.html Note: Laurie Nichols is the director of communications at the Billy Graham Center. It’s been a rough year and a half for the church in America. Over the past months #metoo and #churchtoo has entered our common vernacular as we watch one leader after another fall. For many, this has come as a shock. But if we look at research, what is occurring shouldn’t surprise us. Research has shown that most pastors have struggled with porn, one way sexual immorality manifests itself. It’s not necessarily that more sin is occurring, but rather that sin is being exposed. Big name pastors are failing & falling. Bill Hybels of Willow Creek has recently resigned under allegations of sexual misconduct. Recently we used his material “Walk Across the Room.” How should we view Hybel’s teaching? Should we continue to learn from Willow Creek materials?
As a female, and one who has experienced both sexual assault and disappointment at the hands of others, I can stand with the countless women (and men) in the church today who are scratching their heads as God cleans out his church. We are silently (and sometimes not so silently) praying for a deep-seeded change that would result in all of God’s people to acknowledge their sin, repent, and seek restoration and healing. Any platitude of creating ‘boundaries’ for men and women and similar statements (no matter how helpful they may seem) are quickly falling on deaf ears, for we know that Band-Aids are not the answer to the infection of the sin of sexual immorality. Only a deep change of the heart can turn the tide that is raging through our churches. What do you think a “deep change of the heart” would look like? How can godly men at MBBC show young ladies (under 20 years) that they are valued? What is the effectiveness of Christian Marriages at MBBC to show the young folks in our midst that a godly marriage is one where EACH spouse is valued? How could we be intentional about this witness? Once we begin to think we can no longer endure the church because of the sin of others, we have fallen into idolatry—placing others’ action above our commitment to God. We have taken our faith off of God, and placed it onto how it plays itself out in others. This is not easy at times, and in fact may cause deep wrestling within us—for who doesn’t want God’s creation to emulate him? But try as we must, sin sometimes raises it’s ugly head. But we keep our eyes fixed on Jesus, “the author and perfector” of not only our faith, but our very lives and churches. God knows our hurt. He knows that too many in his church sin too frequently. And this is why grace is so amazing.
When those in the church have their sin publically exposed, how would God have us react?
When I say, don’t lose your story, yes, I mean the story of your pain and woundedness. But more than that, don’t lose the story of God’s creative care in you. For each page of pain in your life, God has taken the proverbial red ink and scratched over, “Past tense. Move to present.” Your story reimagined is the story of redemption and healing. For years, I never thought I’d recover from the pain of that incident, and then the pain I inflicted upon me as a result. But hear this if you are in silence, or feel you have no hope: God can heal you. God’s creation of you was intentional. And your story, for all its bumps and bruises, has the power to speak life into others in a way that many can’t. Second Corinthians 1:3-4 says it well: “Blessed be the God and Father of our Lord Jesus Christ, the Father of compassion and the God of all comfort, who comforts us in all our troubles, so that we can comfort those in any trouble with the comfort we ourselves have received from God.” How can the church, be the representative and tool of God as He comforts His wounded children?
When we are wounded and disappointed, our default can be to move to anger and bitterness. So often in the Gospels, we see Jesus act in countercultural ways that pull towards forgiveness and kindness towards those who hurt him. In the age of social media, where it seems like a quick fix to express our anger and frustration with the wrongs among church leadership, it is wise to consider if this is the best approach. It’s hard to understand the forgiveness uttered from the lips of Jesus as he was being crucified. It’s countercultural to seek peace instead of justice. But the two need not necessarily be separate. We seek justice through the proper channels. Yet we love despite the pain. We follow Jesus to the hard places in believing that even in the worst of times, he is at work in his people, and loves his church. When it comes to how some in the church today treat women and victims, we have a long way to go. But as we press forward in our calling to love Jesus and make him known, we can fix our eyes on him, trusting that this isn’t the last word. He can make all things new.