Hi Lona (@lonathecat)
Actually, I disagree with you.
Jesus often used one rational truth to illuminate another point in context. Doing so does not invalidate the point but uses two contexts to make clear what issue He was addressing.
In Matthew 12, in the same way, Jesus, when charged with casting out devils by the power of Beelzebub, Jesus stated the principle that a kingdom or a house divided against itself cannot stand. This principle is true on its face, but here it is being applied to show that even the demonic kingdom cannot exist unless it has some degree of unity within its own infernal ranks. Jesus was casting out the devils as their opponent, and it was ludicrous of the Pharisees to say that Jesus was working an act of wickedness against the kingdom of wickedness.
The statement that a household is secured by the presence of a “strong man” is not misapplied here. It is a known principle that should be clear to anyone recognizing that God has designed the family and males and females in such a way that He generally has granted physicality to each group more suited to the role for which He designed them. Males naturally have the capacity for greater musculature in their skeletal frame. The muscle mass is denser, males have a greater capacity to endure more blunt force trauma than do women, which is why males and females do not (in maturity) engage in full-contact sports as opponents such as boxing, mixed martial arts, football, rugby, etc.
The skeletal design of a woman accommodates caring a child in their womb and their pelvic bones cradle a child during the childbearing months until term. Because a child must be protected by the physical design of a woman, there are also external threats that must be protected by someone who does not bear the child and can meet anyone or anything on the perimeter of a household with physical violence if necessary to ensure that both mother and child within the household do not have to contend with that threat and risk to life of the woman and the child she carries. The principle that Jesus stated still stands and is logical. Each household should naturally be physically protected by a strong man. How can you argue otherwise?
Scripture also soundly condemns males who fail to provide for their households.
But if any provide not for his own, and specially for those of his own house, he hath denied the faith, and is worse than an infidel. [1 Timothy 5:8 KJV]
Failure in that equates such a worthless fool as an apostate.
Scripture is replete with many principles that stand on their own with a face-value, self-evident message, that also has applicability in other contexts. If that were not the case, how could we ever argue that the verse of the Bible have meaning for our own lives, if we merely limit their applicability to the historical context alone? We serve a God who is transcendent and is not limited by time or space, and it definitely not rooted alone in the past, but speaks living words to us in the present. Exegesis is allowing Scripture to illuminate Scripture and provided deeper and fuller context to what our transcendent Lord is saying, past present, and future.
If you have a problem with masculinity in general, it could be that either you misunderstand it, or that it has been poorly represented to you. Our enemy does so enjoy division and he often effects it by causing misunderstanding or hurt feelings.
Jesus does intend that males be the physical protector of a home. He expects that protection to be an expression of the man’s love for those who are residing within the home, with a willingness to give his own physical life, if need be, to ensure that they remain safe.
We live in a world of dangers that are physical, emotional, and spiritual. We are called to be aware of these things and to be careful to watch for the dangers coming.
Be sober, be vigilant; because your adversary the devil, as a roaring lion, walketh about, seeking whom he may devour: [1 Peter 5:8 KJV]
Paul had a concern with the Corinthian church in his day because there seemed to be this “tolerance” to listen to anything and everything said without the testing of those voices.
But I fear that somehow your pure and undivided devotion to Christ will be corrupted, just as Eve was deceived by the cunning ways of the serpent. You happily put up with whatever anyone tells you, even if they preach a different Jesus than the one we preach, or a different kind of Spirit than the one you received, or a different kind of gospel than the one you believed. [2 Corinthians 11:3-4 NLT]
We are accountable to make sure that the “popular voices” we hear are in fact being consistent with what the Scripture reveals: same Jesus; same Spirit.
Paul tells Timothy: The Spirit clearly says that in later times some will abandon the faith and follow deceiving spirits and things taught by demons. [1 Timothy 4:1 NIV]
Part of what I believe is “demon-taught” is this pagan idea of “gender fluidity” and the “wokeism” nonsense that has infiltrated churches across this land. I think “effeminising boys” is sick child abuse and any parent doing it will give an account to God for that stupid moronic cruelty. Males need a “male-role model”. A woman cannot do it and anyone thinking otherwise is an imbecile and a fool. By correlation, any “male” that thinks he can fully explain what being a “girl” is to a female, is a candidate for a nuthouse and I don’t mean the local Planters peanut factory.
Males need to learn how to guard against arguments that are meant to sway emotions rather than sober a person to the long-term effects and ramifications of doing the hard things for a better outcome. God has put males in the role of spiritual headship in a home.
Scriptures talk about the deceivers that come with a “form of godliness” and how appearances can deceive “silly women”.
Having a form of godliness, but denying the power thereof: from such turn away. For of this sort are they which creep into houses, and lead captive silly women laden with sins, led away with divers lusts, Ever learning, and never able to come to the knowledge of the truth. [2 Timothy 3:5-7 KJV]
Adam, as a male was given the primary role to keep his family from deception, but he failed to do so.
For Adam was first formed, then Eve. And Adam was not deceived, but the woman being deceived was in the transgression. Notwithstanding she shall be saved in childbearing, if they continue in faith and charity and holiness with sobriety. [1 Timothy 2:13-15 KJV]
God gave man that role, even though Adam failed in it, males still inherit that role for our families. God did not change His mind and say, “Well, THAT didn’t work. Let’s see if the woman can do any better.” No. God knew Adam would fail, and Adam and all of his progeny suffered for it, but that does not mean God made a mistake in assigning him that role. He still intends men to uphold it, and consequences will most assuredly come when and if we fail in it.
I do not believe male or female behavior should be characterized by the vices so often associated with each. I believe God created male and female and declared them to be “Good” before sin was present in them and through them in the world at large.
Male and female existed in a pure state as complementary to each other. Some characteristics often attributed to males are that they can be boorish, crude, physically threatening, and given to fits of anger that involve destruction. That they can be insensitive and cruel, and mock weakness. These traits can be just as common in a vulgar woman as they are in males, so I believe it is unfair to relegate these one way or the other. Not every guy loves football. Not every girl loves clothes shopping. Do they lose their “gender” merely because of individual preferences? Absolutely not. Tastes, aptitudes, and proclivities do not define gender. God does. And it is not for use to redefine those things for each other when God in His infinite wisdom clearly has defined our unique physicality as evidence, our ways of processing our world through thought and sensitivity, and perception. I believe God allows us to see through two eyes to get a more defined picture of life, yet each of our eyes (left and right) takes in sight together to give an image to our brain that is in perspective. The left eye sees only how it perceives and the right only from its perspective, but neither one is wrong but are intended to work together in a complementary fashion to perceive depth and color and movement. I think in some way this is true of males and females. We both need each other to see fully into the mystery that God has presented to us in relationship with each other and the wider world.
Please do not take bad examples of males to be characteristic of all of us. If a piano player plays a concerto of Beethoven poorly, it is not Beethoven who should be blamed for the performance, but the player. In the same way, God should not get blamed for poor representations of men.
Any kingdom divided against itself will suffer from that division.
Luke’s account goes further:
But if I with the finger of God cast out devils, no doubt the kingdom of God is come upon you. When a strong man armed keepeth his palace, his goods are in peace: But when a stronger than he shall come upon him, and overcome him, he taketh from him all his armour wherein he trusted, and divideth his spoils. He that is not with me is against me: and he that gathereth not with me scattereth. [Luke 11:20-23 KJV]
Jesus is that “stronger man” that overcomes even devils which occupy the “household” of a person’s heart. God wants “strong men” to guard their hearts too, as well as their households.
Guard your heart above all else, for it determines the course of your life. [Proverbs 4:23 NLT]
Incidentally, guarding a man’s heart is protecting his wife. Scripture says so:
Didn’t the LORD make you one with your wife? In body and spirit you are his. And what does he want? Godly children from your union. So guard your heart; remain loyal to the wife of your youth. “For I hate divorce!” says the LORD, the God of Israel. “To divorce your wife is to overwhelm her with cruelty,” says the LORD of Heaven’s Armies. “So guard your heart; do not be unfaithful to your wife.” [Malachi 2:15-16 NLT]
Brian Stansell (aka O'Brian of the Surface World)
I was born in war.
Fighting from my first breath.