A woman pictured in a cathedral

Religion is one of the largest facets of society in which women continue to be systematically marginalized. Will things ever change?


Southern Baptists aren’t exactly known for progressive stances on gender equality, but this may be changing with their new translation of the Christian Standard Bible (CSB).

Published last fall, the CSB is an update on a Southern Baptist-affiliated version that was released around 15 years ago. The updated version has sparked debate through its use of gender inclusive language. For example, in certain places the language has been changed to read “brothers and sisters” instead of just “brothers”. Other passages have replaced the word “man” with “person” to include both genders in its meaning.

These changes suggest a paradigm shift within religious communities, many of which are moving in the direction of gender equality. However, progress is slow. In many areas, women continue to be denied rights and privileges readily afforded to men. Why is that?

The Fight for Equality

(1 Timothy 2:11-2:12): A woman should learn in quietness and full submission. I do not permit a woman to teach or to assume authority over a man; she must be quiet. (NIV)

It’s impossible to ignore passages like these throughout the Bible.

Unfortunately, while there are countless biblical verses promoting tolerance and acceptance, anti-woman passages like the one above have long been used as evidence to enforce separate and unequal gender roles. In many sects of Christianity, for example, women still cannot become members of the clergy.

All Religions to Blame

Of course, the system of patriarchy is not specific to the Bible and Christianity. The stratification of the genders – placing males on top and forcing women into submissive roles – is found in many of the world’s religions and holy texts.

Perhaps the most glaring (and often cited) example is the treatment of women in the Islamic faith. Muslim women, especially in more conservative societies, live in permanent submission to men. In Saudi Arabia, women are forbidden from driving cars or leaving the house without a male escort.

Interestingly, when you look back even further to ancient polytheistic faith systems such as Nordic, Greek or even Hindu mythology, the power and prestige of their deities often depends on gender. Gods tend to be more powerful than goddesses – further enforcing the idea that one sex is superior to the other.

A scale representing gender equalityA Female Future?

Interestingly, despite their continued struggle for equality when it comes to religion, women are finding personal success at ever greater numbers. For example, women are now graduating college at a much higher rate than men. Back in 2013, the Department of Education noted that: “women will earn 61.6% of all associate’s degrees this year, 56.7% of all bachelor’s degrees, 59.9% of all master’s degrees, and 51.6% of all doctor’s degrees. Overall, 140 women will graduate with a college degree at some level this year for every 100 men.”

Why is the Church Falling Short?

The fact is that religion is one of the largest and last remaining facets of society where women are systematically marginalized. Most religions do not allow women leadership positions (priests, rabbis, etc.) and often times literally cast them into secondary roles in their holy texts.

What will it take for women to attain equality in houses of worship?

 

92 comments

  1. Steve Wehrenberg says:

    What will it take? For everyone — everyone — to recognize that all religious texts are fiction, and not the word of a creator.

    1. John Owens says:

      Proof that they are all fiction.

      1. Steve Wehrenberg says:

        Hmm … I thought the other side had to offer the proof. Oh well …

        1. Patrice Marker says:

          The fact that you are alive Steve is proof. Take any object, brake it, put it in a bag and shake it all day long. How long did take before it came back together to its original form? That is because you are not a creator, you are a creation. God is the Creator.

          1. Steve Wehrenberg says:

            You mean break. And I’m pretty sure that’s just physics.

          2. John Owens says:

            It IS physics, which the Creator put into place. All matter operates according to laws, which matter itself has no ability to create. Some physicist said the universe is filled with “recipes” that describe a fractured symmetry. Now, symmetry is not really natural, and perfect symmetry is sterile, but fractured symmetry can be very productive and beautiful, and the different facets of it can interact in ways that defy logic, but make the world in which we live functional. Law demands a lawgiver, and life demands a life-giver. Life does NOT come from the absence of life. Scientists agree that at one time, there was no matter, and no life. Yet, here we are.

    2. Joanne Martin (Spiritual Advisor) says:

      I would not say fiction, but mans recollection of stories and teachings that were passed along from generation to generation and therefore, much like a game of telephone, if should be understood to be a mans interpretation of what he was taught. Does not make it inaccurate but not an exact word for word account of any given situation.

  2. Carrie says:

    Long before the montheistic religions women were considered to be equal. The Celts, Norse, Native Americans all held women to the same status as men. The harsh desert religions denigrated women, making them chattel. Even the Greeks, Romans and Chinese celebrated women. The “modern” houses of worship must fall or be all inclusive. Women are becoming more and more powerful in the new world. Goddess is eternal, she brings life. Man spreads the seed, she is the Mother of all.

    1. Mistydawn Carter says:

      Agreed. I’ve studied a bit about the Druids and found their culture to be refreshing. It’s also what drew me to the pagan way of living. Even though they had different roles the roles were equal. Women were respected and so were men. There wasn’t this huge power struggle. However something did happen to upset that balance and I would love to find out. Just so when we do find equality again (as I personally believe we have, in this country at least.) We will not follow the same slice of dicy history.

      1. Jason McIntosh says:

        The balance was upset by the Roman conquest, followed by the advent of Christianity as a state religion.

    2. Elizabeth A Bailey says:

      I agree. Even where 1 Timothy is quoted, the text goes on to say how a deaconess and a deacon should behave. Jesus at all times revered women. I think it will take continued education for all before we can have equality of persons or gender.

    3. Jason McIntosh says:

      Agreed. As a Wiccan, I can attest that the modern descendants of the traditions you cited still practice gender equality in our faith and that the value of both is celebrated. I just wish that the rest of modern religious paths would learn from our example.

    4. Cliff says:

      Well said Carrie.. As far as the physics, look up star nucleosynthesis and biogenesis. As in Genesis? 🙂

  3. Randy powell says:

    God said in the last days he would pour out his spirit among all that receive it,so if a woman wants to preach ,let her preach,

  4. John Owens says:

    The famine of the Word gets worse with each “tweak” of the scriptures.

  5. Copeland Larry says:

    It’s Gods Church not Mans/Woman’s!! God had men put his words on paper for us to study and obey. If you don’t think so just mess with another Belief and leave Gods alone!! Satans followers will never leave it alone.

    1. Kirk says:

      Here we go with the homogenization of everything again! Like the Boy Scouts can’t be Christian and all straight boys anymore. If you don’t like Christianity, find something else! God is described as a he, very clearly, Jesus is never described as a woman. There can be many Josephs to protect the church, but there is only one Mary! Female priests and pastors blur that line.

      1. Most Reverend says:

        Copeland Larry isn’t saying God is a woman. He’s saying the Church belongs to God, not you, me or anyone else, only God. The word of God doesn’t change. If you are not teaching the Word of God then anything else is false preaching. False preaching is evil it’s blaspheme. No one who Lies and falsifies will ever reach the Kingdom. Teach God’s word as it was written not how some men have tweaked it to fit their own needs and wants.

  6. Minister Norman says:

    …It will take a change in perception and in perspective, and ultimately a quantum leap toward a true awakening and unconditional LOVE!

    But sadly, we are not that far out of the cave! But I still hope!!

    I’ve watched the women in my family (and others) struggle against Male-Dominated Religion and Society their entire lives. They were not trying to be men, just equals.

    That doesn’t mean homogenizing humanity, or blurring gender roles or eliminating the sexes, but it does mean finally embracing true equality; the balance of Male & Female as necessary and equal parts of the Unified Whole…

    One is not greater than the other: Only the confluence between, within, and surrounding Male & Female is Supreme, because they are meant to be in Balance with one another; not at odds.

    This is a Taoist concept, and one reason why I’m a Philosophical Taoist; and no longer follow any “Organized Religion”, with all of their subjugation, superstition, and hateful prejudices, and their backward messages about “Everyone’s Natural Place in Society” or “The Natural Order of Things”: Buzz words that should warn us all of their desire to arrogantly continue to dominate & override everyone elses Beliefs! Words that have been used widely to justify everything from Salvery to Murder.

    I absolutely believe in equality: Which is the supreme manifestation and image of Tao itself, as symbolized by the Taijitu, the Yin/Yang.

    I still embrace the Message of Jesus (from my Christian upbringing), and because Jesus life, his associations with all people, and his true respect for women, was both unique and pure; especially considering the paternalistic society he was part of, and their male-dominated views of even “god” as “The Father”, and thus “Mother” is relegated to a station of second class citizen.

    Sadly, these kinds of “Fear-Based” Religions must keep women in lesser, or subjugated roles, least they challenge Male-Supremicy, and claim their equality in the eyes of “god, HIMSELF”, and thus destabilize these Religous “Boys Clubs” forever. Such is the curse and the attendent manifestations of “Believing” in any anthropormorphoc “god”.

    Tao, (not Religious Taoism, with its later-added “Pantheon of Gods”, Male-Dominated Priesthood, and Confucious inspired, or competing “Rituals”, which Taoist Philosophy, and especially Laozi [Lao-Tzu] himself warned and cautioned against), but the original unencumbered Philosophy of “Tao” (The Source of All Things), embraces Yin (The Female Principle) and Yang (The Male Principle) EQUALLY: As the supreme manifestation and image of “Balance” itself within Tao. This views both Yin (female) and Yang (Male) as necessary parts of the Unified Whole! This is TAO; and to be seen as equal parts of all existence; with a bit of each contained within the other in an active and ever changing Balance of Creation.

    This confluence of “Co-Creation” is called, “The Still Point”, and is the Balance that Taoists work toward in becoming our true authentic selves.

    These “forces” are not competing with each other, they are completing, they complement each other: Just as Male & Female are meant to complement each other, and not subjugate or impede each other’s growth. So too Yin/Yang are complimentary, and when viewed correctly, always in balance: They are the front and the back of the same coin; the concrete & the abstract; the light & shadow; and they are lost, in excess, without the other, or when the force of one dominates the force of the other. They balance each other out to create the unity of Tao! Out of balance, they can create chaos.

    In balance: Tao is All!

    The World is out of Balance, when one or the other energy overpowers the other, and just look at our Male-Dominated Warring World.

    Balance is the desired State!

    “Tao is All”! We say this not with Yang as powerful and Yin as weak, as Western thought and Society has sought to interpret and corrupt even these pure principles, but because the two become one when in Balance; when equalibrium is reached, thus…

    Equality = Balance!

    One can only stand on tip-toes for so long before falling over. The Tijitu (Yin/Yang) is an expression of real naturalness, of ONENESS, and ultimately of Balance. It represents the TAO as unity, and never as separation: Representing Yin & Yang as co-equal parts of the same whole, of CREATION!

    Jesus may have been a Taoist, and was certainly one in Spirit and Philosophy,!

    Lord knows, Jesus was no Christian (LOL); Paul created that religion, and it was further cobbled-together over millennia, and like all Religion is a conglomeration/amalgumation of even older Belief Systems and Ancient Tribal Superstitions: “The Hero with a Thousand Faces” that Joseph Campbell wrote about.

    In closing: “IMAGINE all the people, living life in peace…” – John Lennon (& Yoko Ono)

    Love, Light, and Freedom: Peace!

    1. Elizabeth A Bailey says:

      Minister Norman,
      Thank you for your lucid, thoughtful, knowledgeable (spelling?) comments. The more I learn, the more I see the similarities in Taoist, different Native American, and Wiccan and ‘green’ beliefs, and the more ‘right’ it feels to my soul. Happy Solstice!

      1. Minister Norman says:

        Elizabeth A Bailey,

        Thank you for your comments!

        As for “(spelling?)”? I am the World’s worst, and this phone doesn’t help by ADDING all my Misspellings to the Dictionary… Can’t remove them or find the off switch, so I muddle through. It also capitalizes words that don’t need it…

        My own typos aside, I need to be a better Editor!

        Anyway, yes, TAO is all about Balance, and following a personal path, “The Way”, but not to (some non-existent) “Perfection”, but toward becoming “Our True Authentic Selves”, and Yin/Yang (The Taijitu) symbolizes that (I believe), very beautifully!

        If you’re interested, I recommend, “The Book of Tao” Translated by Frank J. MacHovec as a great stand alone, and “The Whole Heart of Tao” by the Reverend John Bright-Fey as a complete representation of both Written & Oral Traditions of the Tao Te Ching in one volume.

        May your continued journey be a happy one!

        Peace!

        1. inga says:

          i love reading/learning.. will look into it. thanks.

          1. inga says:

            typos. lol. OOPS is my middle name.. lol.but makes for great laughs here and there. bahahah.

          2. inga says:

            the other day i picked up food poisoning , but had to continue working as i am the back up plan.
            in a plea for attention, i texted my son:
            i think i am dying.
            my son.: can you get my food first ??

            ahhh he is so inspirational and keeps me going when i dont want to or just cant do it any more.

            lol.
            kids. got to love them.

          3. inga says:

            note : he cant walk from a foot surgery in march. hoping it will come round when he starts his therapy in july.

            i keep telling him.. good thing you are cute. good thing boy !!

            (and then i throw up). thats the food poisoning part.

          4. inga says:

            people say i get side tracked.. but no.. it all tiies in..
            i wouldnt have it any other way then to be a woman and a mom.
            and
            i pray every day.
            and give thanks.. that somehow.. i am not an alcoholic.
            god knows i have reason.. between [some] customers.. my son.. the cat that thinks outside the box, but at least beside it. ?? hmmm.
            all though in fairness. on the days i have food poisoning.. you could not pay me to drink.
            but some of the other days.. lol. hmmm.

          5. inga says:

            probably a good thing there are no more hours in a day.
            or i might.. but for now, i am exhausted and just turn in. lol..
            phew

          6. inga says:

            this is just the phase i am in.
            the old people assure me it gets worse.
            bladder problems.. cancer.. loosing ones drivers license..
            though i had that conversation with a kid this aft, and we concluded this was not a bad thing ?!?!

          7. Minister Norman says:

            Peace of Mind & Balance are at it’s core. I wish you well!

            Peaceful Journey!

          8. inga says:

            it got a lot easier after this episode.
            seems the neighbors let their cats out just after my closing of the shop and after i tend to my son’s needs ie his foot and stretches etc, after a 15 hour day.
            unbeknown tp the neighbors, their cats were coming over and sitting in our windows, trying to coax our indoor cats out to play.
            til 4:30 in the morning.
            often resulting in cat fights and hows through the screen.
            once i convinced the neighbors , with the assistamce of the animal control board, that a few hours of interupted sleep due to exhaustion and one guaranteed hurry up and sleep hour to 5:30 when i have to get up.. was not enough.. to tackle the next 15 hour day only to have to be welcomed at the end of it again with hours of cat bantering.. well.
            when the neighbors finally kept their cats indoors , as the law states here for decades.. for this very reason..
            then with a ful nights sleep once again.. it all seems ok and the hope and optimism came back.
            sleep.. is a wonderful thing towards ones outlook.

        2. inga says:

          open to learning what motivates people. i like and admire inspirations.

          1. inga says:

            having been brought up with a christian basis..
            job was my childhood hero. no matter what happened to that poor man, his faith only strengthened.
            and
            captain ahab. from mobyDick. he had his passion and no one or no thing could sway him from his mission. such determination !!
            and
            wonderwoman. she was just beautiful !! hehehe.

    2. Cliff says:

      Well said Minister Norman. Couldn’t have explained it any better myself. Unfortunately until man and woman begin to look outside the box they have been placed in, it’s difficult to change beliefs. My own understanding of the Christos, as pertaining to both man and woman.

      http://www.orderofthewhitelion.com/Religion@/Soulconsc.html

  7. JOHN MAHER says:

    the IGNORANT support the LIES of THEIR RELIGION / CHURCH and GOVERNMENT, LOOK @ the W H, LOOK @ the SENATE, LOOK @ CONGRESS , LOOK @ YOURSELF in the MIRROR and then COMMENT, JESUS CHRIST SUPERSTAR !!!

  8. Joseph E Knopick says:

    As for the point about women as Clergy, In the Church I grew up in…Absolutely not! In the Church I am currently affiliated in the issues comes down to an understanding of Scripture and Church history in the early years. It actually was the the formation of the Imperial Christian Church of Rome where Women were absolutely forbidden from the ranks of the clergy. However in the primitive years, Women held the office of the Deaconate, (Deaconess), there may have been also women Presbyters (Priests/Pastors) There is documents to give testimony as to the ordained women. Especially as Deaconesses and lower clerics like acolytes and readers.Including those in bondage as slaves. (Slaves in the Empire had more rights as citizens in the Empire than traditional slaves of our contemporary history.) (Romans saw slaves as people as much as they did property.)

    Now in the largest Denomination of the tradition I belong, Women, homosexuals, even transgendered persons can be ordained a Pastor. However this is unique and is not fully accepted in the whole of the Denomination. The Church does allow the general consensus of the each member congregation to choose as to what extant they’ll accept such a person as pastor. It is actually a great compromise that sews seeds of discord. So much so, that a third of the church split off and formed a new body about 8 years ago.

    That New Church does Ordain Women but does not accept or ordain homosexuals and definitely not a transgender. However on the opposite side of the tradition, there are elements of orthodoxy that will ordain deaconesses, who are pastoral assistance, heads of certain ministries, etc. they do not ordain female Pastors. citing Paul in Timothy and Titus. However do acknowledge that the church in its early days had women in the deaconate and lower clergy. There is also no denying that Deborah was Ordained by God to be a Judge over Israel, That Mary Magdalene was the First Apostle sent with the Gospel of the Resurrection! The First person to speak in Joy, “HE IS Risen!” plus there are examples in the Acts, of women like Pheobe. (May have been a Pastor).

    Then there are the ultra literal orthodox that women are not even allowed suffrage. So that she cannot vote on any church policies and has to rely on her husband to do his godly duty. She is not allowed even to speak with out the consent of her husband and the church body about matters of the church or faith.

    Yea, sometimes it would be nice if my wife was under that structure. Her opinions do upset me sometimes and I find myself at odds with her. Even being at odds with church because she did agree and it is now public. I have to agree with her and shut my mouth if I want a peaceful night. Even when she is wrong and I do not concur with her opinion. This is really what Paul was writing about. Not that women should be repressed, but that later the husband and wife discuss these things.

    However human nature being the nature of sin and flesh…we are forgiven not perfect Either we go to one extreme, Repress our wives, or the other, ignore Paul’s caution. Both are evil in they’re own forms.

    Look I believe that God ordains women. I believe that he ordains men. I also believe that often enough certain men and certain women should never be in the offices as they are the reason for much of the distrust and hatred of the church and ministers. Let alone Christ and God. When either one is left unchecked (by a supportive and loving partner) they can get out of hand and easily slip into folly. The Bakers, for example. She supported him because he could by her fifty pounds of face paint instead of just two.

    SO what ever you hold to be true, be it true for no minister of whatever gender need be put out there alone. support him/her and know the ministry as much as he/she does, oh and keep him/her humble and accountable to you and to God.

    +PAX

    Joseph

  9. Amber Fry says:

    This is a large part of why currently conventional religions are shrinking and people are shifting to other, often alternative, women friendly and encouraging religions. Paganism is one of those growing partly for that range of female led practices. Some Christian nominations have recently been accepting women in pastoral positions but unless and until this picks up across the board… well… good luck.

  10. Candace E Ross says:

    Agreed, Amber Fry! When I was young I yearned to be as close to “God” as possible, thought I might do that by marrying a preacher, and serving God by being the ministers wife. (Didn’t though.)
    It wasn’t until many, many years later, after spending my adult life searching for what I called “:the Holy”, that it occurred to me “I” could BE the preacher!
    And yes, it is with a branch of Paganism that I have done just that, serving God/Goddess/Creation for the past 20 years. I do believe the earliest humans thought of “God” as female, as that which creates life. The shift to male dominance some 6,000 years ago, to my way of thinking has not worked out all that well. Partnership, equality of the sexes, (again in my opinion) is the right and proper way to greet the future.
    Blessed be!

  11. inga says:

    a sign of the times ?? a point to ponder ??

    the boy scout thing. yeah. there were guide lines and requirements. people challenged it. and the govt asked the boy scouts to change their beliefs. the boy scouts suggested that of the people were not satisfied with the boy scouts, perhaps the people could make a club of their own ??!! but the govt ordered the boy scouts to conform. and they did.
    i guess that demonstrates [again], who is in control. as the boy scouts have not yet, made another club.

    as per women in the church.. lol. well.. the book says NO. you can re write it.. lol. but we still know what it says. eventually the next generation will not know, and THAT will be between YOU and GOD.

    according to the current bible, me being a woman, single mother, unwed, owner/operator of my independent gas station/general store, etc etc… i am not going to make it. but its ok. i will know a lot of people in hell. so at least i will be met with familiarity. i tell people though.. your only escape from me is to good by god.. else..see you later, alligator. bahaha. muwhahah. (kidding of course, but those who read the book, get it. those who dont, really ought to !!

    on the off chance i do make it to heaven though.. which would be absolutely amazing, wouldnt it !! i tell you this !! i will commend god for such a place. as ideally we [think] we know how things ought to be.. but with all our efforts.. we cant even come close. though several people have made progress.. unfortunately, collectively, i fear we have not, and there is still reason to be sadden. its a tougher job than it looks: to create a respecting valued community. because as they say.. there is always one [billion]. sigh.

    pray people pray. be good to one another.. and help me !!
    lol. while i help you.

    again. i have read the book, and i am not sure i will make it in.. but i sure want to see you make it !!
    so chin up.

  12. inga says:

    another point to ponder.
    equality. i dont believe i am equal to a man. nor do i want to be. and i dont believe men are equal to women. nor do i want them to be.
    i think we are like the sun and the moon. different roles. the sky and the sea.. different roles. man and woman. different roles. we all compliment each other, [or not]. but we are far from the same ?!? sure we share parts of our lives in similarity.. we all are part of the planet; work with people, be it business arrangements or progresses; we eat, sleep, and find ways to be merry. and we often get caught up in words.. like equality rather than giving respect for someones individuality.

    i love you because. [and if you say you can handle the book work, and take that load off me.. i am sincere too.. bahahah] . because i am not “EQUAL”ly enthused about book work !! i am NOT !! but i can make a great lasagne for when you are done the book work. and that is team work !! towards the bigger picture.

  13. inga says:

    i am not as physically strong as a man. so i am not equal. its ok that i am not as physically strong as a man. some woman are as physically strong as a man. that does not make all of us equal. a pay cheque.. does not make us equal. some times one can do more with a smaller pay cheque, then another can do with a larger one.. ?? think on that a moment. take several moments actually.

    i am not equal to a man. i am woman. hear me roar !!
    but not in the church. no tigers in church. bahahah.
    shhh.

  14. inga says:

    wait a minute. there are no tigers allowed to make noise in church either. ??!!
    like WTF. are they not equal\ly as important ?? did god not make them .. first.. before man. animals that adam named ??
    bahaha.
    sorry for going all monty python on you all. but i really dont have anything to say at church anyway. that s the ministers job. i am there to listen.. the audience. not entertain. its my day off !!
    i have no problem being silent at church.
    i quite looking forward to not being boss for an hour. not mothering..not staffing.. not cooperating with customers..
    no. i like the breather.
    carry on god. you are doing a good job !!

  15. inga says:

    it used to be so simple.
    if you dont see it my way. i will kill you.
    then, if enough people complain, they kill the speaker.
    then we get a new one. by default or elected.
    and we do it again.
    you would think we would learn. lol.. bahahaha.

  16. inga says:

    oh wait. we have. we dont kill them anymore.
    we are alive, so we fight over ..words.
    instead of helping the kids with their homework.. mending the socks.. stirring the soup.. feeding the live stock.

  17. inga says:

    yeah.this can all go this way or that..
    but really..i dont have the answers.. else i would be king. bahaha. but i am a private person, running a gas station so well, you know..
    but you have to commend the big guy for running a tight ship.
    i mean really.

  18. inga says:

    funny though, back to my original post.. how many people are trying to re-write and re-word the bible so THEY fit. lol.
    really. it doesnt work that way. you can fool some of the people some of the time.
    god on the other hand.. lol. i dont know if that is an entity you want to ??correct ?? lol.

    really. one should make their own book/bible club and see how easy/difficult this really is.
    after all, we dont really know how many times it has already been ??corrected/altered?? to get to this stage.

    maybe take a step back. again. embrace each others differences. give credit where credit is due.. and lend a hand when and where needed.

    god bless. we are trying.
    me especially. like i said. i read the book, and i am heading in the wrong direction. sigh.

  19. Candace E Ross says:

    Perhaps, Inga, you could take a break from posting. I for one, have gotten your point, and would like to hear from other people.
    Many of us are “inter-faith” not going by “the book”, not afraid of hell, and certainly believing women’s voices NEED to be heard to balance society physically, mentally and spiritually. Goddess Bless.

    1. inga says:

      lol. sometimes the truth hurts, doesnt it.

      1. inga says:

        but its not wise to bring a cat to a dog show. its inappropriate.

        1. John Owens says:

          VERY good point, Inga.

          1. inga says:

            thanks john..
            i dont think i am the type that can sum up my thoughts in little windows. so will leave you all to it.

            i heard an interesting surmon once. the bible is like the tools of the tool box. but having a hammer and a tape measure, doesnt make you a carpenter.
            and the owners manual in the car.. in the glove box.. yeah. is not the license for driving the car, though you should refer to it periodically.

            hope this helps people. if you are interested in god.. read his instruction book. it will benefit you on numerous occasions. call on him when ever you want. the book was made available to all of us who respect it. some will understand the teachings there in, while others can/will not. sigh.

            best wishes all.
            god bless.

  20. Bill Fox says:

    As important as my faith is to me, it appears to be a rather unimportant issue to most people. I’m all for maximum participation of everyone in the religion of their choice. And that’s where the problem arises. Not just women, but other groups (gay, Black, etc.) choose religions with scriptures that marginalize their particular chosen issue, in an attempt to not only change the religion, but change the scripture upon which it is based. If a Woman feels she should be in charge of a religion, she should start her own and write scripture and beliefs to fit her own desires. It is unlikely that existing religions are going to change thousands of years of traditions, dogmas, doctrines, magisterium edicts, and supporting scripture, to give up power that has long since been established. There are many “churches” in our area that have no real beliefs but meet every week, just to get together. What better forum to birth new religions? My nearly forty year experience with AA has proven to me that anyone can get what they need, if they want it bad enough and find people of like mind. God is not going to throw you into hell for trying to worship Him with all your heart. People may keep you in hell, but no one said it would be easy.

    1. inga says:

      yeah. what he said.

  21. inga says:

    chose the book club that is suited to you. make a new one if you do not agree with the efforts of those before you.
    but we should not be arrogant enough to think we have the right to change : THE WORD, ; at least, not without consequence
    its in the book. you either accept it, sometimes in faith. or not. the road is narrow. the book clearly states it is not for the masses.. the biblical stories suggest how very few make it..
    i am sorry to disappoint.

    ideally.. is this conversations on if YOU were king ??
    or is this about gods book club.. lol. thats for you all to decide.

  22. inga says:

    could you ??
    should you ??
    they are two VERY different questions.

  23. inga says:

    i think there is some sort of time warp here. its not 1:30 like the time stamps suggest.. lol. its coming up on 5:00.. hmmmm.

  24. inga says:

    time travel ?!
    live love laugh

  25. Patrice Marker says:

    God created man and women equal yet different. The word Helpmate in Genesis is very similar to the word that is used in John 14:16 when Jesus is telling the disciples he is sending the Advocate. Think the role of the woman is one of weakness, wrong. Christ lifted up women, and put them on equal footing with men. The Advocate is one who knows more about the situation, and can plead your case and work on your behalf better than you are able to on your own. They are the stronger one, not the weaker one.

    1. Elizabeth A Bailey says:

      Yes.

  26. inga says:

    god [and jesus].. did NOT create us all equal.. lol. its up to us to demonstrate our worth its NOT a given ??!! man OR woman. some do. and some dont. sadly. look around. do you need examples.. serial killers who rape and bury children alive.. do you think they are equal ?? !!
    everyone is looking for an out without putting in the effort !!
    it does NOT work that way !!

  27. inga says:

    some women are weak. just saying..
    they are the ones that go to church.. lol. and they are told to shut up. bahahah.
    others bake the cakes for coffee after the surmon.. some clean the church..

    why are you all trying to tar people/men/women with one brush ??

    we dont want to be societies norm ?? heck. take a look at the “NORM”.
    embrace the uniqueness.

  28. inga says:

    but on this note.. i love us all here because.. we are trying.
    and points for that.
    not enough points to get into heaven. lol. but a few starter points.

    1. John Owens says:

      Really though, if Heaven is anything at ALL like people imagine, don’t you think that after, I don’t know… 1,000 years, 1,000,000 years, at some point, wouldn’t you just get bored?

  29. inga says:

    oh no. not me.. i have a list that is ever growing of things i want to do.
    i want to knit [another] sweater and blanket.
    crotchet more snowflakes.
    a weekend get a way in a cabin in winter and bake bread and soup on the wood stove..
    i would like to build a gold fish pond..
    a green house..
    a house boat long weekend..
    a ship in a bottle..
    sew a cape..
    etc etc.. and i f i can imagine all this stuff and more here, imagine what i could come up with in heaven surrounded by great and inspirational people.
    and adventures i could share with them, and that they could share with me..
    of yeah baby.
    im trying !!
    i am not very good at following the book. but i am making a conscious effort to better myself daily.
    just in case.

    dont you want to go ??

    all though in fairness. i read this silly book: and the gods behaved badly [ at my book club]. hilarious !! so i can see how that question would get asked.. lol

  30. inga says:

    truth be told. i am often confused.. and quite often dont believe. like doubting thomas.
    but then i remind myself.. just in case.. JUST IN CASE..
    after all, what have i got to loose.
    just EVERYTHING !!

    else i have limited myself to another ?? 30 to 35 years.. ad i was never really god with lines.. lol
    and hey. so what if i am wrong. and there is no after life what so ever.
    really. i had a good time dreaming. and i didnt hurt anyone.

    dont go bursting my bubble.. lol.
    it could be worse than me trying to be a good person.. lol.
    i could be trying to be a bad person. muwhahaha. that would be worse.

  31. inga says:

    if money was no object..
    ask yourself that..
    you could change your mind in careers.. do this for a while.. then that.
    no police though.. no need for them.. or doctors.. we are not going to get sick. sweet.
    so there will be a few professions out of the equation.. but there will be others..
    and doing something because you *want to.. instead of you *have to. is such a different concept. its not work any more.

    we could/should be thinking like that now. its good practice.
    as best we can.

  32. inga says:

    be the person you would want at your book club.. lol.
    and ask yourself.. why god would want to share his table with anyone less.
    do you think he went through all that effort so someone without reason could be a drunk and threaten to be ill over all the best food heaven has to offer.. cause that person likes to drink, or god will understand ?? really.
    or the child molester.. because he “likes ” children,. should god put his children beside this guy to eat ?? really ??
    do you think these guys are getting a place.
    they are warned now.
    its up to them if its worth it or not.
    sad to say, for the most, it will not be
    for the rest,, we will feast with god.
    and what a glorious day that will be.
    rules are to our benefit.

    again. you have company you wont keep. and they have choices. to behave or challenge. or not come.
    but YOU [and me] have the choice.. to aim to be the company that god will be proud of.

  33. inga says:

    i never get bored of good cooking.
    imagine that every night. oh yeah.
    soup, salad, lasagne, and garlic bread.
    and another night..
    roast and peas and potatoes..
    unless gods a vegetarian. which would make more sense.
    so.. oh that montebello mushroom with onions on a bun with home fries and mayo.. oh yeah.
    and what ever else vegetarians eat.. lol. they have some really good stuff. and i shoulld be thinner then and in better shape. lol.
    ahh who knows.
    but just in case..
    because i would be stupid not to be a gambling gal on that one.
    worse case scenario, i enter the deep sleep of death, without consciousness. according to the book.
    and that leaves me.. again.. 30 to 35 years. thats pretty short !!
    i want more.. lol.

    dont you ??!!

  34. inga says:

    i have a son i have kind a like. lol. if you asked me would i like to spend the next 35 years with him or eternity ?? well shit man. he s a good kid. kind, funny, smart, helpful. etc etc. i want him forever !!
    and thats a chance i am willing to take,
    and if i ever find a spouse..
    lol. well i know how some people could answer that one..
    but i have not yet.. so if i do.. i will want him FOREVER… NOT just a few years.

    we used to be invinsible. naturally. somewhere the world took that away from us. and i think thats maybe sometimes why we make the decisions we do. sigh.

    but i kind a like being invinsible.

  35. inga says:

    i dont know.. but my book club is pretty good. but temporary to this life time.
    god offers a bit more.. and i can assume he has good taste too.
    so i read the book. i dont always get it. but thats ok. thats what faith is for.

  36. inga says:

    any one is free to jump in at any time.. like candace said. lol.

  37. inga says:

    until then.. does anyone want cake..

  38. inga says:

    with fresh strawberries and cream ??

  39. inga says:

    no. ?? more for me. muwhahaha.

  40. Candace E Ross says:

    REALLY thought there would be some intelligent, inspiring, thought provoking posts on this site. Don’t know if you are a regular or just posting excessively today, Inga, but you have totally turned me off. First day on, and same day gone. Good by folks, and good luck.

  41. inga says:

    why would you think that hun.. lol. but thanks. lol. good luck to you too.

  42. inga says:

    she’s no fun. probably didnt get any last night.

    1. Joanne Martin (Spiritual Advisor) says:

      WOW….as I scrolled down to comment this was all I saw…Can you please explain where this is at all a constructive comment. You want to preach you are a good person yet a comment like this is not one of a good person but completely ignorant and obscene. I see that your need to be the center of attention by overtaking the comments section is not limited to only some forums.

      And I will, for the final time since your inability to see that your behavior is unwelcome no matter which post you are on and who is there, she is not upset because of this “cake” you continue to speak of but because like everyone else who has tried to have a constructive and intelligent discussion find themselves lost in your patronizing, ignorant commentary that does not add anything to the topic but only fulfills your need for attention.

      If not everyone, at least I can see through your facade of “humor” and judgement because any child could even, by now, understand that there may just be something wrong with how they are behaving after being told so many time by numerous people. Yet you refuse to see any fault in yourself, and even though you accuse others of having:issues: because they cant take a “joke” i fail to see any healthy minded well adjusted person who would find the humor in your previous comment.

  43. inga says:

    being a straight woman myself, i am glad i do not “turn her on” though.. lol. phew. that could have turned real bad real quick.

  44. inga says:

    OH WAIT. are you mad because YOU didnt speak up for cake ??
    dont balme me hun i offered.
    but i can offer again. would you like some cake.. ??

  45. inga says:

    and people wonder why i am fat. i mean “more to love”
    you cant just leave cake lying around baby. some bodys got to eat it.
    and with no response again.. well.. i have to conclude..
    more for me.
    bahaha. lol. oh yeah.

  46. inga says:

    oh and ps. i am sticking by the fact that i am NOTHING like a man.. lol. and proud of it !! bahahah
    i am: WOMAN !!
    you all will get no “competition” from me.. bahaha.

  47. Elizabeth A Bailey says:

    It would be nice to have a discussion with more than one person’s opinion in it.

    1. inga says:

      we cant decide who is online or off line as convenient to us.. lol.
      or who wants to read or speak..

  48. Cheryl says:

    We have to start our own houses ✊🏼. I need no outside entity to give me permission.

  49. Rev. Ida M. Grossi, Chaplain says:

    The Bible was written thousands of years ago. Cultures change. Jesus Christ viewed everyone as equals; rich, poor, men, women, saints and sinners. We are all God’s children. Would you love your children differently or love them equally? We are all equal in God’s eyes. Human beings create classes, casts, pecking orders and divisions. Not God.
    You do not choose to serve God. God chooses you. Man or woman. God chose people who would have been considered the least likely to do his good works; Abraham, Moses, David, Isaiah, Jonah, Saul/Paul. All people who thought themselves unworthy or ill prepared to go forth and be the Holy Father’s representative. But God gave them the wisdom, strength, knowledge and words. God worked through them. He chose them. God continues to choose. He chose me.
    Culture, history, time does not determine who serves God.
    God does.

    1. inga says:

      i disagree. but i can understand the angle you are taking.and i can respect that.

      1. inga says:

        and it is these different angles that give us choices as to how we get to god. we need different angles for t he diversity of people.

        so i guess i dont really disagree.. i just take a different angle.

        leave it to god
        or
        god helps those who help themselves.

        i guess its a mind set, or maybe pending circumstances we may call on either perspective pending circumstances.

  50. inga says:

    i cant help if no one else posts.
    that is up to YOU to post.

  51. inga says:

    as a woman, i am quite happy [AND RESPECTED] for the role i play in life.
    i dont feel the need to be EQUAL to a man .. any more that the need to feel EQUAL to a hamster.
    and dont pretend to be either.
    my role as a woman is secured.

  52. inga says:

    joke of the day:

    how do you make god laugh..
    answer:
    tell him your plans.

    bahahaha

  53. Rev Richard says:

    The artwork for this article is very powerful, who is the artist?

  54. Joanne Martin (Spiritual Advisor) says:

    I think the issue with some churches inability to recognize equality is because their holy texts are not being considered to be what they are. Mans recollection of stories and lessons passed down over generations and then eventually committed to writing. Especially apparent should be the language used in these text as in indicator of the time for which they were written. The world has changed. There was a time when it was considered acceptable to “own” people. Much like there was a time when women were considered to be possessions incapable of the same things as men were.

    The lessons and teachings regarding the divinity being portrayed in each of these text does not have to change, however the world we live in has a greater understanding of equality among all people. At the time these words were committed to print, it would have been incomprehensible to consider a motorized vehicle or a vessel that could make people “fly”. These were just not considered in this time.

    So understanding this and, using the Bible as an example, knowing that Jesus himself did not write these pages and have them published for his followers and even if he had, the language and words used were indicative to the time and in no way were meant to be looked thousands of years later to be analyzed word for word beyond the meaning of its lessons and teachings. So to use the holy doctrine to inhibit women from the same things allotted to men is a misguided notion that at the time it was written, they could see into the future we have now and still believe women should merely be servants and loyal to man regardless of the changing world.

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