Sep 30, 2008

From the Desk

by Jennifer Schmidt

Recently I heard a fellow student argue that God did not intend for women to be politically involved. He supported his claim by stating that women were created differently from men, adding further that the emotional nature of the female gender renders them incapable of making informed and necessary decisions during moments of crisis. Such outrageous claims were echoed by another male student that I spoke to on Monday. He stated that he could not vote for Sarah Palin simply because of her gender.

While women were created differently, they were not created unequally. God designated Eve to be Adam’s helper, a statement that I consider to be one of elevation, not degredation.

The designation that Paul makes for women not to serve over men in the church was one meant as a matter of organization – someone has to be the leader and God decided upon men.

I fully support this Biblical instruction and believe it to be perfectly designed by God. The Bible has many examples of women that served in positions of leadership —Deborah and Esther are two women that immediately come to mind. Both of these women served in positions of leadership for their societies and were acting in accordance to God’s direction.

I believe that the church is healthiest when the men take their roles seriously and the women support and encourage their leadership.

I do not believe that this instruction translates into the social realm nor the political realm.

If a woman cannot serve as a vice-president, then a female CEO should be nonexistent, there should never be a female in management over a male and females should especially avoid situations where they give any instructions to a male. If that were the case then I would not be able to serve as the editor of the Champion since I have male editors and writers that work under me. Such ideas seem preposterous because they are impractical for our society as a whole.

A woman should submit to a man within the structure of church leadership and the bounds of marriage not because she is less competent, but because such roles are necessary for organizational purposes. I also believe that biblical submission is a picture of Christ’s humility and submission to God the father. Jesus is equal to God, but their roles are very distinct.

When a woman shows deference to a man, she is obeying the Lord first and foremost. However, submission of the female to the male was never mandated for society as a whole, and with the separation of church and state, biblical rules for church leadership do not jive with the structure of America’s government.

In America, gender should not be a qualification that determines which candidates are entered on the ballot. The question should always be one of ability, competence and experience.

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