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Submission Scriptures


For many women the women's submission passages are difficult to accept.  I must admit that I have trouble with the "submission passages."  There were times when I skipped over these scriptures thinking that if I didn't read them, they would not exist.  Now is the time to face the passages squarely and try to understand what scriptures were trying to tell us.  Were they prejudiced against women?

Jesus spoke with and taught women.  He forgave women.  He appreciated the kindness women had to offer him.  Jesus had friends who were women.  Why do Peter and Paul then seem to want to take the sharing of our experiences away from us in church?  

Christians are deeply divided on this issue and there are all of the biblical conflicts.  For example, Is the woman to obey her husband?   In the book Ten Lies the Church Tells Women, there is the word huotasso means to "identify with" or "be attached to" or could mean "become one with".  These word meanings do not mean "obey" as a child would obey parents.   Page 179.   Some translations will state "obey".  Every translation is slightly different and different translations also add to the confusion.

The women's place probably will not change anyone mind.  The meaning of Greek words get fought over and most translations state that they most accurate. The two books listed below were a great help to clarify the woman's place issue.  

  • Wives Duties

"Likewise you wives, be submissive to your own husbands, that even if some do not obey the word, they, without a word, may be won by the conduct of their wives.  When they observe you chaste conduct accompanied by fear.  (New King James)

Wives, fit in with your husband's plans; for then if they refuse to listen when you talk to them about the Lord, they will be won by your respectful, pure behavior.  Your godly lives will speak to them better than any words. (Living Bible same verse different translation)

Women should listen and learn quietly and humbly.  I never let women teach men or lord it over them.  Let them be silent in your church meeting.  Why?  Because God made Adam first, and afterwards he made Eve.  And it was not Adam who was fooled by Satan, but Eve, and sin was the result.  So God sent pain and suffering to women when their children are born, but he will save their souls if they trust in him, living, quiet, good and loving lives.

Deacons wives must be thoughtful, not heavy drinkers, not gossipers, but faithful in everything they do. (Timothy 3:11)

But there is one matter I want to remind you about: that a wife is responsible to her husband, her husband is responsible to Christ, and Christ is responsible to God.  That is why if a man refuses to remove his hat while praying or preaching he dishonors Christ.  And that is why a woman who publicly prays or prophesies without a covering on her head dishonors her husband (for her covering is a sign of her subjection to him). 1Cor 11:3-5

But if anyone wants to argue about this, all I can say is that we never teach anything else than this--that a woman should wear a covering when prophesying or praying publicly in the church, and all the churches feel the same way about it.

Honor Christ by submitting to each other.  You wives must submit to your husband' leadership in the same way you submit to the Lord. For a husband is in charge of his wife in the same way Christ is in charge of his body the church. (He gave his very life to take care of it and be its Savior!) Eph 21-25

  • Husbands and Wives

But remember that in God's plan man and women. For although the first woman came out of man, all men have been from women ever since, and both men and women come from God their Creator.

  • Husbands Duties

 You husbands must be careful of your wives, being thoughtful of their needs and honoring them as the weaker sex.  Remember that you and your wife are partners in receiving God's blessings, and if you don't treat her as you should, your prayers will not get ready answers. 1Peter 3:7

Treat older women as mothers and the girls as your sister, thinking only pure thoughts them.  1Tim 5:2

And you husbands, show the same kind of love to your wives as Christ showed to the church when he died for her, to make her holy and clean, washed by baptism and God's Word: So that he could give her to himself as a glorious church without a single spot or wrinkle or any other blemish, being holy and without a single fault.  That is how husbands should treat their wives, loving them as parts of themselves.  For since a man and his wife are not one, a man is really doing himself a favor loving himself when he loves his wife! Ephesians 6:25-28

  • Unequally Yoked

Here I want to add some suggestion of my own.  These are not direct commands from the Lord, but they seem right to me:

And if a Christian woman has a husband who isn't a Christian, and he wants her to stay with him, she must not leave him.  For perhaps the husband who isn't a Christian may become a Christian with the help of his Christian wife. 

But if the husband or wife who isn't a Christian is eager to leave, it is permitted.  In such cases the Christian husband or wife should not insist that the other stay, for God wants his children to live in peace and harmony. For, after all, there is no assurance to you wives that you husbands will be converted if they stay; and the same may be said to you husbands concerning your wives. 

  • Single Women

It is the same with a girl who marries.  She faces the same problem.  A girl who is not married is anxious to please the Lord in all she is and does.  But a married woman must consider other things such as housekeeping and the likes and dislikes of her husband. 

I am saying this to help you, not to try to keep you from marrying.  I want you to do whatever will help you serve the Lord best, with as few other things as possible to distract your attention from him.

The wife is part of her husband as long as he lives; if her husband dies, then she may marry again, but only if she marries a Christian.  But in my opinion she will be happier if she doesn't marry again; and I think I am giving you counsel from God's Spirit when I say this. 1 Cor 34-35 & 39-40.


After reading these passages carefully, I still have more questions than answers.   Seems to me all it is saying is that we need to be submissive to each other.  In any relationship, there must be a leader; but I do not believe that Jesus would expect a woman who is emotionally or physically abused to stay in a relationship.  A leader is a servant.  Jesus is our example-He is our leader but He is our servant to the point of torture and death on the cross.  Yes, women should serve their husbands out of love and husbands should serve his wife as Christ loved the church and gave Himself for her.   If Christians keep the example of leadership as shown by Jesus Christ, there should be no deeply complicated issue.


A Woman's Place

  Women Pastors and Preachers  Women Pastors and Preachers  Women Pastors and Preachers

  Submission Scriptures

  Can Christian Women Minister?  

  Can Women Lead in the Christian Church?

  Leadership of Older Women in the Church   

  Women Arise-Prophesy



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10 Lies the Church Tells Women (website)

Ten Lies the Church Tells Women: How the Bible Has Been Misused to Keep Women in Spiritual Bondage

The Gospel is was not meant to deny women their divine destiny