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Monday, August 15, 2011


They asked Bachmann whether she would be submissive to her husband and it brought complaints from all sides. "You can't ask that!" Bachmann took it in stride. "Marcus and I will be married for 33 years this September 10th. I'm in love with him. I'm so proud of him. And both he and I -- what submission means to us, if that's what your question is, it means respect. I respect my husband. He's a wonderful, godly man, and a great father. And he respects me as his wife." But she didn't answer the question. Or, rather, she did.

I think it's a viable question. Indeed, I think it's an extremely important question. Unfortunately, popular culture has managed to redefine another simple word. We used to understand that "love" was not the direct equivalent of "sex" and that "marriage" meant "man and woman". And we used to understand that "submit" and "respect" are not equivalent terms. Fortunately we figured out in time that Paul was quite wrong when he said, "Wives, submit to your husbands as to the Lord" and the more reasonable among us realized that he really meant "mutual submission" and that whole stupid idea that a wife should actually submit to her husband was, well, totally wrong ... for the last 2000 years.

Assuming, on the other hand, that the Bible actually meant that wives were supposed to submit to their husbands as to the Lord (seriously, how does anyone come up with "mutual submission" there, as if the Lord submits to her, too?), go back to the question to Michelle Bachmann. If the command really meant that wives are supposed to submit, what is the reality of a Christian wife in office? How would it look if a Christian wife actually intended to be a biblical wife and the president of the United States? Now, that really is a good question.


Glenn E. Chatfield said...

Bachmann's problem is that she said "submission" means respect. Sorry, but respect is a whole different aspect of the marital relationship than submission.

And, yes, I do think that a wife could be a good president while still submitting to her husband. Submission is not subservience.

Stan said...

Indeed, submission is not subservience. Still, I think, since we agree that submission is also not merely "respect", that it is a viable question as to exactly how a Christian woman rightly understanding "Wives, submit to your husbands as to the Lord" would operate in the White House.

Unknown said...

@Glenn: Or, it could be possible that 'respect' is a loaded term in Bachmann's vocabulary. Remember that same passage in Ephesians talks about wives respecting their husbands in this way.

It IS a good question though.

Glenn E. Chatfield said...

I just read an interesting article about Bachmann talking about how she submitted to her husband when he said she should get a degree in tax law even though she had no interest. That bothers me. This was not an issue for which she was required to submit. WIll he then be directing her decisions in the White House?

Stan said...

That, Glenn, was the reason for the question being put to her in the first place.

On the other hand, if the Bible teaches "wives, submit to your husbands as to the Lord" and her husband says, "Get a degree in law", in what sense is that not "an issue for which she was required to submit"? What qualifies as issues where submission is required or not? (I understand, for instance, that "Maybe you'd want to get a degree in law" would be a suggestion, not a command, but this one didn't appear to be a suggestion.)

And that is the reason for the post and my questions at the end. If biblical submission is subordinating the wife's will to the husband's will (as has been the understanding since the beginning, only very recently becoming anything less than that) (I mean, we all know that the marriage vows include the promise "to obey" on the part of the wife and not the husband), then how does that look for a biblically submissive wife in the White House?

Glenn E. Chatfield said...

Well, I just don't think commanding one's wife to get a degree is a proper use of the husband's authority. And there are many variables to know in order to say this was appropriate; e.g. Did this take away from her primary duty of raising kids? What was required to give up to do this that the Lord would have been against?

But moreso, if she is in office and the husband demands she decides issues HIS way, then it would be forcing her to lie about where the decisions come from, and in that case she should not be required to submit to him, since she is to submit "as to the Lord," and the Lord wouldn't force her to lie.

Stan said...

There are two issues here, and I want to keep them separate.

First, when the Bible commands wives to submit to their husbands, are they only required to submit if it is "a proper use of the husband's authority"? A wife, then, examines the command and says, "This is the proper use of his authority and I will submit, but that is not so I will not." We're not talking here about sinful commands. We're clear on that. But are you saying that there are, within the bounds of morality, improper commands a husband can give that the wife can then ignore?

Second, the issue of a godly wife in the White House seems to me to be a different animal altogether. You say it would be forcing her to lie. I don't typically think of any president as saying, "This is where the decision came from." In fact, I'd guess that most if not all presidents have, at times, made rulings based on their wives' suggestions. The source of the decision is not typically questioned. And if she never said, "I made this decision apart from any input on my husband's part", I don't see how it would be a lie.

So I'm stuck here because it looks like a biblical wife is required to submit to her husband, in which case, if a husband tells her to do something in office (he may not, but if he did), she would be required to do it.

Glenn E. Chatfield said...

I think there are moral commands by a husband to which a wife is not required to submit. The requirement to submit to a husband's desire for her to get a law degree COULD HAVE moral ramifications but that information is not known to us; if it had moral ramifications then I would say she would not have to submit to it.

If a decision in the WH was made only because that was what her husband wanted, that would be immoral as well as unethical. Taking advice in such decisions is one thing - taking orders would be another. It would be unethical - hence immoral - for the husband to use the office to HIS advantage to push HIS agenda because he isn't the President!

Stan said...

On the first point I would concur (as I did) that following sinful commands is not required. There was no indication that such was the case in the Bachmann scenario.

I'm at a loss to figure out on what basis it would be a sin to follow her husband's commands while in the White House. What makes that intrinsically sinful? What command of God would be violated in such a case? I'm not following that.

Glenn E. Chatfield said...

Well, who is the President? If the husband were to give her the commands as to how to run the office, then he would be usurping her position in that office and running it as if HE were the president. This would be unethical, hence immoral, hence sin.

Stan said...

I suppose, from a secular viewpoint, that this is true. But, of course, "Wives, submit to your husbands as to the Lord" doesn't fall under "secular viewpoint" and there are no biblical commands that say (or hint), "Presidents must make their own decisions; they cannot be told what to do." So culturally I'd agree with you but biblically I'm going to have to disagree.

Glenn E. Chatfield said...

I'm sorry, but if you are the President of the US, it is you and not someone else. If you are there as a figurehead for someone behind the scenes, who was NOT elected, that is unethical. That makes it a sin biblically. It doesn't matter if it is a secular office or not. You take an oath to uphold that office as yourself, not as a puppet figure for someone else. It is living a lie.

Stan said...

Right. Like I said, I'm going to have to disagree. Happened before. It'll happen again. Good that we can remain friends through it. Since I see nothing in the oath of office that says, "Presidents are not allowed to do what other people say", I don't have a problem with it morally.

I do need to point out that if a woman is intending to be a godly woman under biblical command that I would not be able to vote her into office for this reason. I will also point out that such a statement obviously doesn't apply to Bachmann since she has already said that "submission" to her is "respect". That is, she has no intention of obeying that biblical command (because she doesn't understand it to mean "submit").

Marshal Art said...

Interesting stuff.

First, was Bachmann's submission a result of a command or a suggestion by her husband. I haven't seen this distinction mentioned. Her dislike of the idea might not have even been brought up to him, but here submission to the suggestion by him could have also been a result of her agreeing that it was a good idea regardless of here personal feelings about complying. What's more, the suggestion may have been a recognition on his part of Michele being more capable of learning the subject, the result of which would have benefited their plans. I've not heard such details in regards to this issue.

Submitting to the husband may only be a matter of submitting to that which concerns the family unit. If the husband agrees with the decision to run for office, does he really have any authority to interfere with her decisions as president simply because he's her husband? I speak of their roles from a Biblical perspective. Imagine a woman who is a concert pianist married to a guy with no musical talent whatsoever. Does he, as her husband, have any authority regarding how she plays a piece with which he has no familiarity? Must she submit to his opinion regardless of the fact that it has no impact whatsoever on their family dynamic and situation? Somehow, I think this takes the mandate way too far AND would indicate that the husband is not fulfilling HIS side of the marital equation.

To be more clear, I don't believe she regards submission to her husband as complete and total enslavement to her husband as if she were as property. I think THAT'S her point.

Finally, for a man to love his wife as Christ loves the church, which is a more complete submission in MY mind, a male president would be equally risky to the country if married in that he would take her advice or orders out of love. Any fear of a godly woman in office for such reasons is every bit as irrational.

Stan said...

"was Bachmann's submission a result of a command or a suggestion by her husband?"

The way she tells it is that she regarded it as a command, so she obeyed.

"Submitting to the husband may only be a matter of submitting to that which concerns the family unit."

I'm not sure where you'd find that distinction. First, "that which concerns the family unit" is actually pretty broad, since just about every choice a person makes affects all of those around. Second, I don't find such an injunction or suggestion in the text. Worse, imagine that we apply that to the command to husbands. "Love your wives ... as is concerns the family unit. In all other cases, do whatever you want." No, I don't see that. I see, instead, that God ordained a hierarchical structure by which He provides His guidance to those in the structure -- God to Christ, Christ to man, man to wife (1 Cor 11). And she is commanded to submit to her husband "as to the Lord". Where's the limitation?

This whole idea of "submit to his opinion" plays toward some tyrannical buffoon, a "worse-case scenario". "Do you believe in abortion?" "No!" "Well, what if it is going to kill the mother if she doesn't abort?" Well, yeah, valid question, but it is avoiding the principle. More to the point, it is throwing out the baby with the bathwater. "Well, if you think it's okay for abortion in that case, then why not others?" No! The principle (in this current discussion) is "Wives, submit to your husbands as to the Lord." We can deal with exceptions (he's a criminal, commands evil things, is a tyrant, is abusive), but they're exceptions. A man who is attempting to be a godly husband is not a tyrant because that is neither loving nor treating her with honor.

"I don't believe she regards submission to her husband as complete and total enslavement to her husband as if she were as property."

No, indeed, she doesn't. She doesn't at all. That's my point. She has taken the word "submit" and transformed it to mean "respect". So when the military under President Bachmann refuses her orders respectfully, she will classify that as "submission", right?

"Finally, for a man to love his wife as Christ loves the church, which is a more complete submission in MY mind, a male president would be equally risky to the country if married in that he would take her advice or orders out of love."

You are really going to have to explain that. In your view, "love" means "do whatever they tell you"? You can't be a parent and think that. "I love my kids and they told me to let them do what they want, so I do." That is not love. Since I see no connection between "love your wife" and "do whatever she tells you to do", I don't understand at all your point.

David said...

Just curious, in a godly marriage, where both partners love God and strive to obey Him, what biblical distinction is given for what kind of orders she needs to obey? Since it says she is to obey "as to the Lord", wouldn't that mean she has to obey in all things? Or does she only need to obey the Lord in moral commands, anything else she is free to disobey? If we are standing on Scripture and taking it face value, I see no call for her to disobey him in religious, secular, personal, familial, or any other decision. She has no allowance for disobeying the Lord in her submission, where is it allowed to her husband? This is assuming they are both godly believers striving to love, honor, cherish, and live their lives as to the Lord together. The only exception I can really see Biblically though, is if he orders her to sin. Other than that, based on the phrase "as to the Lord" she has no call to disobey him. And I think, in a godly marriage shown to us in the Bible, a godly husband would know enough to not order his President wife in matters of State. But even if he failed in that, she would be constrained to obey him "as to the Lord".

Glenn E. Chatfield said...

The Lord would not order her to do anything immoral, so to obey as to the Lord would not entail obeying to do that which is against God. Just as we are to obey the government unless it conflicts with God ("We must obey God rather than man"), a woman is only to obey her husband's commands which do not conflict with God's. After all, do you think a wife should submit to her husband's request to pose nude for pornography?

David said...

Where in the idea of a godly marriage would a husband order his wife to pose nude in pornography? I thought I was pretty clear when I said, "The only exception I can really see Biblically though, is if he orders her to sin" in my response. Pretty sure I covered that. The assumption Stan is running with is that both partners are striving to live godly lives.

Glenn E. Chatfield said...

My point is exactly that - if the husband ever did command his wife to do something immoral, she would not be bound to submit to that command.

I submit that by a husband commanding his President wife to do something HE wants done if office, he is commanding her to sin by letting him use her office as an unelected president. Therefore she would not have to submit to his commands/instructions about what to do in the position.

Stan said...

While I absolutely agree that a wife is obligated to obey God rather than man and, as such, would be obligated to disobey an order from her husband if he told her to sin, I'm still unable to agree that a "first husband" telling his president wife to do something would be ordering her to sin. Here's the deal. Sin is not "things I don't like" or "that which violates our sense of propriety", but "that which violates God's commands." I can find nothing in Scripture that commands a leader of a nation to refuse input from someone and nothing in God's commands that says anything at all remotely like "the President of the United States is not allowed to obey the commands of higher authority". Indeed, if the premise of "Wives, submit to your husbands as to the Lord" is "Wives, you will receive your input from God via your husband" (which I think the language indicates), then a godly wife in the office of the President whose husband told her to do something would be violating God's directions.

You're quite sure that a president that obeyed the instruction of another would be committing not merely a violation of social convention or cultural expectation, but sin -- a violation of God's commands. Could you possibly give me some reference that would indicate that such an act would violate a command of God? From Scripture, what sin is being committed?

David said...

I seriously doubt any Presidents have ever not taken advice from others, nor have they not taken orders from others. They have people that are smarter and know more in their respective fields, and I highly doubt their wives haven't influenced or even directed decisions. I think you are putting an undo restriction on a female President bordering on a double standard.

Glenn E. Chatfield said...

Again, we are not talking about "input" or "ideas" - we are talking about orders, commands, instructions. Allowing a husband to run the country in that fashion is dishonest, unethical. Dishonesty is lying and lying is against God's commands, i.e., sin.

It is a lie for the President to claim they are just taking ideas and input from advisors when in reality the are allowing their advisors to actually call the shots of the office.

This would be the same problem if she were the CEO of a company are just a manager of any business.

The question is, who is hired/voted to run the office? Is letting someone else run the job lying? YES. So that would make it a sin.

Stan said...

First, you're suggesting a scenario I couldn't even begin to imagine, where a husband is directing every move his wife makes while in office. What rational human being would do that?

Second, you're assuming that the woman would have lied. "I am not a submissive wife" when what she really meant was "I do everything that my husband tells me regardless of what he says." That is, if she said, "I practice biblical submission" and then did, it wouldn't be dishonest.

Third, Bachmann has already stated that she is not biblically submissive, instead redefining "submit" to mean "respect", so all of this discussion is theoretical. There are, to the best of my knowledge, no biblical wives running for office.

Still, in theory, assuming honesty up front, what is the sin?

Glenn E. Chatfield said...

Here's the thing: I have no problem with a fundamental Christian woman in the White House as long as she and her husband understand what Biblical submission is.

My point this whole time has been that it is NOT biblical submission to allow a husband to run the position as a virtual un-elected president. Taking advice and suggestions from a husband is perfectly normal and proper. What I am trying to do is give an example of what isn't normal or proper, what is indeed sin.

Stan, I don't know how I can make it any clearer how it could be sin. If dishonesty is involved, it is sin. IF something is unethical - hence immoral - it would be sin due to its dishonest nature.

IF a husband would use "submission" as a way to get his wife to run the country or a corporation the way he wanted it run, then that would not be proper for a wife to submit to, because it would be submitting to dishonesty - pretending she was making decisions when in reality she would be just the mouthpiece of her husband.

David, I am not applying a double standard. I am countering the idea that biblical submission would include how her husband would decide how she would operate in the White House, or any corporation. It would not be biblical submission to obey a husband who is taking control of the office by using his wife's position and demanding "submission."

Stan said...

If a woman running for office or CEO were to say, "I believe in biblical submission and I will submit to my husband's commands", and she was still elected or hired, there would be no deception. In this case, I don't see a sin. As far as I can tell, the "sin" that you would see would be deception, where she says (in essence) "I'm running this show" but, in fact, she is willing to submit to her husband (as required by Scripture). If no such deception took place, I don't see how any sin would take place. I don't see how I could support it, but I don't see any sin.

Glenn E. Chatfield said...

IF she said she would obey his BIBLICAL commands that is fine. My point is that she is NOT required to obey an unbiblical command. An unbiblical command would be that which seeks to usurp HER authority in HER office (CEO, POTUS, etc) and attempt to be in charge of what SHE should be in charge of. Because THAT would be deceiving those under her into believing SHE was the one responsible when in reality it would be her husband. That deception would be sin - how could it not be?

I think this whole thing started by discussing what would NOT be a biblical command for a wife to submit to. Anything that would be against God's will would be an unbiblical command to which a wife would not be required to submit. I used the idea of pornography as an appeal to the absurd to demonstrate my point. The question remains about what would be an unbiblical command from a husband if his wife were a CEO or POTUS, etc, and I maintain that ANY command where he is usurping her authority in an attempt to run the business HIS way.

Stan said...

"I think this whole thing started by discussing what would NOT be a biblical command for a wife to submit to."

Oh, yeah! And I recall saying, "I'm going to have to disagree." Should have left it at that. Like David, I don't see how "submit to your hudband as to the Lord" would exclude anything. I don't see anything dishonest if it is stated up front. And I don't see any biblical exceptions that would suggest (in biblical terms), "Wives, no need to submit to your husband if he is telling you not to tell that prophecy in church" (as an example). I see no biblical suggestion that "female leaders are not allowed to obey their husbands." And, again, I'm not suggesting you change your view. I'm not continuing the argument. I'm summing up mine and saying, again, I'm going to have to disagree.

Glenn E. Chatfield said...

Do you or do you not agree that a woman should NOT obey her husband if she commands her to sin?

That would be an exclusion to the rule that she should submit to her husband!

Stan said...

As I said earlier, "I would concur (as I did) that following sinful commands is not required." We're in agreement there. I'm just not seeing the biblical command that would be violated if a leader followed the instruction of her husband, so while you obviously see such a thing as sin, I don't, and that's where we disagree.

Glenn E. Chatfield said...

Okay, so then you would say it is NOT a sin for a husband to give commands to his wife - be she a CEO, POTUS, etc - which would usurp her authority and allow him to run the particular office as HE wants it run, using her as the figurehead? You don't see this as something that would be dishonest?

Stan said...

Right. Assuming she was honest ("I'm a Christian who believes in following what the Bible says for my life, and the Bible says I'm supposed to submit to my husband"), it would not be a sin for a wife to obey her husband even if she was the CEO or President. For a husband to run the office from behind like that (you know, like the standing joke of Hillary behind Bill) (I remember the bumper stickers: "Impeach Clinton! And her husband, too!") would not be a sin. It would be unwise. It would likely be unloving of him to do it. It wouldn't necessarily be treating his wife with honor as he is commanded to do. So it very well might be sinful for him to do. However, Peter is explicit. "Wives, be subject to your own husbands, ...even if some do not obey the word ..." His commands might be sin for him, but he would not be commanding sin and wives are to be subject to even disobedient husbands as long as they are not commanding sin. Since I cannot find a biblical command regarding CEOs or Presidents not being allowed to obey commands, I cannot classify it as sin. Further, since I believe that God's mechanism for providing divine guidance for wives is via their husbands, I would believe more that she must obey if the command is given.

Glenn E. Chatfield said...

So if the whole world thought she was the one making the decisions, yet all she was is a figurehead doing what her husband wanted, you wouldn't see that as being deceptive to those she is serving so that it is really the husband in the position she was elected/hired to do? You don't see that as her participating in deception, which WOULD be a sin for her to do? We are talking about forcing a wife to deceive people by having a position which would really be run by her husband, and you don't see that as sin?

Stan said...

Glen, I hate to say this, but you're starting to sound like Dan. I have said multiple times ... here, let me quote from other comments up the line ... "Assuming she was honest ('I'm a Christian who believes in following what the Bible says for my life, and the Bible says I'm supposed to submit to my husband')", "I don't see anything dishonest if it is stated up front.", "If a woman running for office or CEO were to say, 'I believe in biblical submission and I will submit to my husband's commands' ...". Now, if a woman was honest as I've repeatedly indicated and "the whole world thought she was the one making the decisions," I could only chalk that up to a stupid world because she was honest. Beyond that, if she refused to follow her husband's instructions and lied to the nation and/or world on other points (you know, like almost all politicians do), she would be guilty of the sin of deception. It isn't a matter of following her husband's instructions; it's a matter of dishonesty which I ruled out from the beginning by stating that this imaginary person was honest from the outset.

But if you are going to ignore what I've said, it will make the entire conversation quite impossible ... and reminiscent of someone else who tends to do that and make for difficult conversations.

Glenn E. Chatfield said...

I understand you were saying "if she were honest," but then you turned around and said you couldn't see where it would be a sin if she was following her husband's commands. My point was that it would be dishonest to follow her husband's commands and let him run the country.

So the problem was your apparent double talk: "if she was honest" while at the same time saying it wasn't dishonest to obey her husband's commands for running the country.

It isn't a matter of being like Dan, it's a matter of you saying that if her husband ran the show behind the scenes by telling her what to do she would have to submit to him because you couldn't fine anything sinful about doing so, and yet my point is that if she is submitting to her husband in that fashion, that would be dishonesty. You turn it around and say as long as she tells everyone up front that she IS submitting to her husband, then that isn't dishonest to let her husband run the country with her as the puppet.

I guess in the end it is a matter of you not seeing it being dishonest and unethical to allow a husband to run the show behind the scenes by her submitting to him as long as she is up front and tells everyone that's what she's doing - at least that is how I am understanding you, which is what baffles me so much.

Or are we talking past each other?

Stan said...

Let me see if I understand you. A woman (any person) says "I will take the commands of my spouse as valid commands" and proceeds to do so (as CEO, President, or the head of your local neighborhood 7-11), and you would consider that dishonest. So, assuming that you are understanding my premise that the person in question is explicitly honest and up front and that you are saying that it is dishonest to do so, then there is another aspect in which it is like Dan. I just don't get it. "I understand your words and I see what you're saying. I just don't get it." :)

I don't understand in what sense it is dishonest to be forthright and straightforward and above board with my dealings and to do what I say I will do.

As I said, I don't know that it would be ethical or moral for a husband to do such a thing, but that would be unethical or immoral for him. The wife who submits to her husband, even if her husband is not being ethical in asking her to, is not sinning, but obeying God.

starflyer said...

Okay, I admit I haven't read these from top to bottom, but I'm trying to hang...but it does seem like Glenn doesn't feel these verses could possibly apply to a powerful woman (from the world's standpoint), like a CEO or politician. Maybe the Scripture isn't practical for everyone?

And Stan, you made the Dan reference...we only thought it. :)

Glenn E. Chatfield said...

I really think it is unfair that you compare me with Dan who is pushing an agenda and trying to get you to agree by trickery, etc. I am being 100% serious in trying to clarify exactly what you mean and how you understand what is or is not dishonest.

I guess the issue is, just what is a valid command? IF the husband is using his position as husband to require submission of his wife to his commands, and his commands usurp what decisions are right and proper for her to make, why would that not be unethical and dishonest if she were to obey? If the woman is merely a figurehead in a position so that her husband can run her office (be it CEO, POTUS, etc) because he isn't in a position to get that office himself, why would it not be okay for her to refuse to submit to him in that fashion? Her being a figurehead only, with her full knowledge of it and agreeing to be that figurehead, even if it is only for certain issues, has to be dishonest because the people did not hire/elect her husband. Why would it not be sin for her to participate in the deception by obeying such commands?

Stan said...

Glenn doesn't feel that a president (or CEO) should submit to anyone.

Stan said...

Glenn, the comparison to Dan (notice the smiley faces) was in jest. I'd be relatively certain that Dan would object to the comparison as well. :)

As for the "valid command" question, since Peter says that wives are to submit to "disobedient" husbands and I cannot find a sin in a husband's command to the theoretical wife in question, I cannot see any reason to refuse the command or to classify it as "invalid".

Here, let me try an example outside of the President question. A wife believes she and her husband are being led by God to, when her husband retires, travel the country giving aid to people who could use their help. Her husband agrees. But when retirement comes, her husband decides that he doesn't want to do that. So, is his "command" ("I won't be traveling around giving aid to people") a "valid command"? I mean, she was relatively certain that God wanted them to do it. Now he's saying, "No." Would it be right for a godly wife seeking to follow God's instructions to ignore her husband's command in this case, or should she assume that God, regardless of whether or not her husband is being obedient to God's leading, is giving her instructions ("as to the Lord") and follow his command?

It seems to me, based on the "valid command" premise, she should ignore her husband in this case and proceed with the ministry she believed God was calling her to. On the other hand, it also seems to me, based on the biblical instructions, that her husband's command is valid regardless of her convictions regarding God's leading and should be obeyed.

By the same token, if a husband of the president violates God's commands to love and honor his wife and tells her to make a particular policy choice from the Oval Office, I believe that said wife would be required, based on the same biblical instructions, to obey. With the exception of a command to commit explicit sin, I see the biblical instructions as being absolute. Nor do I see anything biblically sinful about a leader of a company or a country obeying God's commands to submit to her husband. I see no biblical command that says, "Thou shalt not be a figurehead" nor anything that hints at such a position.

And it is apparently your position that a woman who openly declares to the public, "I am a Christian woman who will follow the biblical commands to submit to my husband", gets elected with that information out there, and actually does so is being dishonest. I suppose you and I have different definitions of "dishonest", since I would consider that purely honest and genuine integrity.

Glenn E. Chatfield said...

The reference to Dan is nothing but a resort to name-calling, in jest or not. I found it to be very offensive - I guess that isn't my type of humor.

It is also a misrepresentation to say that I do not believe a "powerful woman" should submit to anyone.

My point is simply that, contrary to YOUR belief, a woman in a position such as POTUS/CEO or what have you has been put there by an employer, voters, etc based on HER leading. I'm not suggesting that she not take advice from a husband, what I AM saying is if she is nothing but a figurehead for a husband to be the one running the position, then she is participating in dishonesty which is indeed sin.

The issue of obeying husbands even if THEY are sinning is moot because it isn't just the husband sinning. To me, a husband telling his wife to participate in deception - i.e. lying to the people who put her there - is no different than a husband telling his wife to make a porno film. Neither action falls under the rule of submitting to the husband because neither action would be "as to the Lord." The wife NEVER has to submit to any command of the husband which would force her to commit sin, no more than any Christian would have to submit to the government when it says to commit sin.

Apparently our difference is that you don't see it as being deception if the husband is the one actually running the show using his wife as a puppet, and therefore she must submit. And that is why I am baffled that you would believe that.

Stan said...

I apologize for jesting with you in a way you found offensive. I'll try not to jest with you in the future. Thanks for clarifying the atmosphere I need to retain when discussing matters with you. It will be difficult for me, but I'll try to set aside humor.

As I've said from the time I've understood your position, I understand your position and we are going to disagree. I don't see how further discussion on it will make any difference because I don't see being honest as dishonesty and nor do I see the submission of a wife as defined by the role she plays. You do. Fine. We disagree. Unless you have further arguments that I haven't seen, I think we're done.

Glenn E. Chatfield said...

You have a weird idea of honesty if it includes allowing a husband to involve you in dishonesty.

By the way, I am more than open to all sorts of humor. I just don't find being referred to as being like Dan a bit humorous.

Stan said...

Okay. I have a weird idea of marriage, too, where "marriage" is defined as "the union of a man and a woman" instead of "two people who love each other" and "submit" is defined as "puts oneself in subjection to" rather than "respect" and all sorts of other words that I seem to define different than others. You see "she tells the truth and carries out what she says" as dishonest. Fine.

Glenn E. Chatfield said...

Now there you go misrepresenting my position again. That is NOT what I said.

You said as long as she tells everyone that she does whatever her husband tells her, then letting her husband run the presidency by making her submit to his commands is not dishonest. I say it is dishonest to be just a figurehead which allows a husband to rule by "submission" requirements. I say she is not bound by biblical submission when her husband commands her to do that which is dishonest any more than she is bound by biblical submission if her husband commands her to do a porn film. Both are commands to sin.

Stan said...

Yes, that is what you said. That is what I disagreed with. That's why I said, "I see no biblical command that says, 'Thou shalt not be a figurehead' nor anything that hints at such a position." That's why I see nothing fundamentally dishonest about stating she will do what she does and doing it. That's why I still disagree.

My "misrepresentation" was shorthand. Another thing to avoid ... although it is quite difficult given the character limitation in these comments. Likely at some point I'll just have to avoid comments altogether.

David said...

Glenn, its quite clear that you and Stan just flat out disagree. Stan says the female president that got elected there with the people knowing full well that she will obey her husband is not being dishonest when she then obeys her husband. Whether or not he is puppetteering is irrelevant. You say that the female president that got elected there with the people knowing full well that she will obey her husband is being dishonest when she obeys her husband. If the people didn't want a female president that openly obeys her husband, then they should not have elected her. You seem to have an odd idea of dishonesty in this case. How is her being honest about obeying her husband, then obeying her husband, dishonest? Seems she has been honest from the beginning, yet you would say she's being dishonest by doing exactly what she said she'd do.

Glenn E. Chatfield said...


What I'm saying is not that it is dishonest to obey her husband and submit to him as appropriate. What I am saying would be dishonest is if her husband actually ran the presidency (or CEO position, etc) using his authority to force her to be submissive. What would be dishonest is not that she is doing so after telling people she would be obeying her husband; what would be dishonest would be that people would understand that to be accepting counsel and advice, not that she would be a mere figurehead. What would be dishonest would be IF the husband was the type to take advantage of his authority and she is nothing but a puppet. Then the actual person in the office would be the husband, and that would be unethical and dishonest, and it would be a sin for her to knowingly participate in the dishonesty of her husband actually being the president/CEO, so therefore she would NOT have to submit to that type of command because that would make her a participant in dishonesty.

Stan said...

Glenn, You are still operating on the premise that she deceives the public. David and I are operating on the premise that she is honest with the public.

Now, on one hand, it's hard to imagine a candidate who would be honest like that with the public and still get elected (my theoretical scenario). I would submit that your theoretical scenario is equally unlikely. A husband who wished to rule wouldn't have his wife running for office. He would. A more realistic scenario would be a husband who isn't interested in the power but whose wife gets elected. In the more realistic version she makes her own decisions with rare exceptions where her husband makes (rare) commands. Since I'm quite sure that there isn't a president who has ever served without taking the instructions from someone else at least once, I don't know if this more realistic scenario is problematic for you.

But David and I are still baffled how a completely honest, forthright, godly Christian wife who tells all and still gets elected would be dishonest.

The Piper's Wife said...

What is dishonest would be accepting a position knowing that your husband would be the one actually running the position!

I submit that any command of the husband's to exercise his authority over the wife in her position, would be making the wife do something dishonest by following the command. I'm not talking about advice - I'm talking about a command to have her do something completely against what she would do - then it isn't her making the decision, it is him. And that is why she wouldn't have to obey that command because it would be a command to do something dishonest. Just telling everyone you will follow any dishonest command your husband gives does not take her off the hook of participating in the act of dishonesty.

But apparently we are going to see things differently as to what is or is not dishonest in this scenario so we have beat this dead horse long enough.

But just for clarification in a general way, Do you think a wife is required to obey a command of her husband if it requires her to participate in dishonesty or any other immorality? I am assuming that you would say, "NO." So it apparently boils down to our specific scenario as to whether you would consider what is taking place as being dishonest.

Glenn E. Chatfield said...

That last comment will say from "the piper's wife" but it is me - I didn't notice she was still signed in to her blog.

Stan said...

Mrs. Glenn (kidding ... just kidding),

As I have repeatedly said, a husband's command to sin is the only command that a wife can refuse to obey. We just disagree on whether it is sin for a wife to do what her husband says when she is in charge of something. You consider it dishonest and I have said that as long as she was honest about it from the start I can't consider honesty dishonesty. We disagree. We agree on the responsibility of a wife not to obey a command to sin. We simply disagree that this particular command is sin.

Glenn E. Chatfield said...

Okay, that is the clarification for all followers. You and I agree that a woman is to submit to her husband under all circumstances except for that which would require her to sin.

Our only conflict is whether in the scenario discussed dishonesty is being perpetrated by the couple. You say no and I say yes.

So in reality we are on the same page when it comes to a wife submitting to her husband, contrary to an implication that I DIDN'T believe this.

Okay, next subject.
(oh, and the "Mrs. Glenn" is appropriate humor :oD )