In the past few weeks, I have written two posts (here and here) about something that Mary Kassian wrote for The Gospel Coalition. She contacted me and sent me the following email. I was thankful she did and I was thankful to hear that she agrees with the way the Bible lays out Biblical Womanhood. We still may not agree completely on everything but for the sake of clarity and as “iron sharpens iron,” here is her email to me:
It has come to my attention that you are representing me as:
Twisting the meaning of headship to make it null and void and not teaching that wives are to live in submission to their husbands.
Not believing that headship means authority.
Hating the term patriarch.
Instructing young women that to get married and have children is wrong.
Greatly disliking biblical womanhood, marriage, children, and stay-at-home mothers.
I can assure you that none of these assertions are true. My views on biblical womanhood are most extensively outlined in my Bible Study, “True Woman 101: Divine Design.”
Let me provide some additional context for The Gospel Coalition post on which you are basing your judgement. I wrote that post in 2012 as a polemic (rebuttal), after Rachel Held Evans published her book, “A Year of Biblical Womanhood: How a Liberated Woman found herself Sitting on Her Roof, Covering Her Head, and Calling Her Husband Master.” At the time, the internet was rife with people who vociferously argued that “complementarianism” was defined by the June Cleaver or Stepford Wife caricature, and the ridiculous reductio ad absurdum stereotype Rachel presented.
The Bible’s view on womanhood is not defined by this feminist caricature. It recognizes that although marriage and children are God’s good plan for most women, singleness is His good plan for some (1 Corinthians 7).
Perhaps you are unfamiliar with my books, or unaware of the context of this 2012 post. I can assure you that I would never wish to cast a negative light on marriage, motherhood, and homemaking –which I view as holy callings. Nor would I ever wish to give the impression that headship is devoid of authority or that wives are not directed by Scripture to submit to their husbands. As to the word “patriarchy,” my view is that its meaning has been hijacked–much like the word “gay.” The Bible clearly supports the concept of patriarchs, such as Abraham, Isaac, Jacob, and others (Acts 7:8-9).
In perusing your blog, I suspect that our views are far more aligned than you may think. I do appreciate your passion for the Word and for Biblical Womanhood. Upholding God’s good design for gender is desperately needed in this day and age.
I would be happy to clarify my views for you, if need be, or to answer any other questions and concerns that you might have.
She also wrote me and told me that she was going to ask The Gospel Coalition to add a clarifying note to that post, so that readers are made aware of the context, and understand that the post was a rebuttal against the negative stereotypical characterizations of Biblical Womanhood put forth by Rachel Held Evans and others. I just checked out the post and The Gospel Coalition did add the disclaimer, thankfully.
If it be possible, as much as lieth in you, live peaceably with all men.