On Instagram last week, I shared a tweet of mine and below it I wrote out Titus 2:3-5. “ The aged women likewise, that they be in behaviour as becometh holiness, not false accusers, not given to much wine, teachers of good things; That they may teach the young women to be sober, to love their husbands, to love their children, To be discreet, chaste, keepers at home, good, obedient to their own husbands, that the word of God be not blasphemed.”
One woman then asked me if women in the workforce are blaspheming the word of God. I decided to check out some things in the old commentaries about women being keepers at home and blaspheming the word of God. It’s interesting to note that they don’t say anything about “careers” since women didn’t have careers back then contrary to popular opinions.
“Home duties, cares, pleasures, sacrifices of self—these God-appointed duties ought to fill the mind and the heart of the young wife.” (Ellicot Commentary)
“House-wives, not spending their time in gadding abroad, but in looking to the affairs of their own families.” (Matthew Poole’s Commentary)
“Keepers at home: minding their own family affairs, not gadding abroad; and inspecting into, and busying themselves about other people’s matters. And this they say is what is meant by the woman’s being an helpmeet for man, that while he is abroad about his business, she is , “sitting at home”, and keeping his house; and this they observe is the glory and honour of the woman.” (Gill’s Exposition)
Instead of women having careers back then, the women would try to find ways to be outside of their homes, being busy bodies, gossiping, and doing anything they could to get out of their home duties, just as women today will go “run errands” frequently to shop when they don’t need a thing. Nowadays, women can easily neglect their home duties by spending their days scrolling through social media and being busybodies and gossipers.
What do the old commentaries say about blaspheming the word of God?
“That the word of God be not blasphemed – That the gospel may not be injuriously spoken of, on account of the inconsistent lives of those who profess to be influenced by it. The idea is, that religion ought to produce the virtues here spoken of, and that when it does not, it will be reproached as being of no value.” (Barnes’ Notes) We blaspheme God’s Word when we don’t obey Him, what He has called us to do.
“That the word of God be not blasphemed: as for the discharge of their duty towards God, so for the credit and reputation of the gospel, that for their carriage contrary to the rules of nature and morality, as well as of religion, the gospel may not be evil spoken of, as if from that they had learned their ill and indecent behaviour.” (Matthew Poole’s Commentary)
“These words refer to all the exhortations from Titus 2:2 onwards, but more particularly to those clauses enforcing home duties immediately preceding. There was, of course, the fear that wives, carried away by religious fervour, might neglect the plainer every-day duties for the seemingly loftier and more self-denying occupations included under the head of religious works.” (Ellicot’s Commentary) This one was interesting to say the least! This would include all of the female preachers/speakers who leave their homes, since they’ve either had a “vision” or “heard a word from the Lord” that their ministry outside of the home is more important than the one inside. (Did you know that many cults have been started by women “hearing the voice of the Lord”?)
So after looking at this, do all women in the workforce blaspheme God’s Word?
Women who don’t want to be home and raise their own children but would rather have a career, yes, they are blaspheming God’s Word.
What about women whose husbands want them to work? In this case, it’s the husband who will be held accountable for asking his wife to leave her God ordained role for money.
What about single women? Widows sixty years old and older who must work don’t blaspheme the Word BUT in God’s Word, the older widows are to be cared for by relatives and the church (1 Timothy 4:4,9), not have to leave their homes for the workforce. So, in this case, the relatives and churches are blaspheming His Word for disobeying God by not providing for the older widows.
What about the younger widows? God’s exhortation to them is to marry, bear children, and guide the home (1 Timothy 5:14). What if no one asks them to marry? In 1 Timothy 5:16, we are told, “If any man or woman that believeth have widows, let them relieve them, and let not the church be charged; that it may relieve them that are widows indeed.” So the families/relatives are to provide for the young widows until they get married. The children have already lost their father. They don’t need to lose their mothers too. If the families don’t provide for the families and the church refuses too, then both are the ones who will be held accountable. There’s no place where widows are encouraged to go out and make their own money to provide for their families.
What about single mothers who have divorced their husbands, because they weren’t “happy” and now must work? Yes, they blaspheme God’s Word since they are commanded to be keepers at home and through their actions, prevented this from happening. In divorcing their husbands, they were forced into the workforce and away from their homes and children which all greatly harms their children.
What about single mothers who, by no choice of their own because their husbands divorced them, must work? No, I don’t believe they blaspheme His Word, but they should seek the Lord daily and ask for Him to make a way home for them, since their children still need and want them home.
What about single mothers who had babies out of wedlock? Any sin against God’s commands blasphemes His word. Their fornication blasphemed His Word. Their children are suffering due to their fornication. But are they now blaspheming His Word by not being able to be a keeper at home? This is a hard one to answer. I don’t know. All I know is that they need to seek the Lord in prayer and ask Him to make a way for them to be home full time. Their children need and want them home full time just as much as other children.
Wherefore I say unto you, All manner of sin and blasphemy shall be forgiven unto men: but the blasphemy against the Holy Ghost shall not be forgiven unto men.