August 14, 2020 Christianity Church Faith Family 0

Grabbed this post from Redditt…and i am going to reproduce it here in it’s entirety..just in case it goes poof:


No, your congregation does not preach “biblical headship”

“Headship” as a concept is given a lot of lip service, but few people actually practice it the way Christ does with the Church. I can’t count the number of people who tell me how “red pill” their church congregation is, or how “biblically grounded” the teachings are on marriage and relationships, while being exactly the opposite.


I believe a large reason for this stems from inappropriately understanding the views on marriage expressed by different congregational structures. Here they are:

  1. Headship: The view that the man is the head of his household. What he says goes.

  2. Complementarianism: The view that God has given men and women different roles to fill. Among the man’s roles are the right to have the final say on disputed matters in the home.

  3. Egalitarianism: The view that husband and wives are on equal footing with regard to all roles, including decision-making authority.

  4. Feminism: The view that women should be empowered in the home to do as they please and that men should support them in the direction the woman chooses to go, unless it would otherwise amount to direct sin.

Very few congregations actually claim the title of “feminist” when it comes to discussing marriage roles, as they realize this cultural ideology is in direct opposition to Scripture, so most of them will take the feminist agenda and mask it in the form of egalitarianism or complementarianism. Egalitarian-feminists will push the notion that a wife’s equality with her husband prohibits him from exercising authority over her, empowering her to have an equal say, which is virtually always interpreted that her “equal” say should win because if he wins then he’s just a patriarchal monster. Complementarian-feminists will pay lip-service to male authority in the home, but instead redirect that authority in ways that serve the wife. If there’s a dispute, the husband would be “ungodly” if he were to exercise his authority in a way that displeases his wife or fails to give her what she wants. As such, the man’s authority in the home is merely that of a puppet figurehead, while the wife truly runs the show. Feminist structures incorrectly reflect to the world that the bride (Church) has authority over her husband (Christ) either by direct authority or obligational exercise of authority.

True egalitarianism (of the non-feminist variety) is still unbiblical and dangerous. Jesus directly preaches that no kingdom can have two leaders, or else it will be divided. Married people are meant to be ONE, not divided. The only ways true egalitarians can resolve conflicts are: (1) by compromising, which inherently means that even if one party is right, the right answer must be set aside for the compromised conclusion, or (2) taking turns (usually couched in “loving the other enough to let him/her have this one”). Egalitarianism incorrectly reflects that Christ and the Church are equal in authority in the relationship.

True complementarianism (of the non-feminist variety) is another beast entirely. Even up to 3-6 months ago I would have identified as a complementarian purist (meaning: the feminist expressions of it are eradicated). But I have since come to realize that it is flawed even in its fundamental ideology, which is that God has assigned certain roles for men and women to follow. While many complementarians will focus on the authority dynamic as the “hot topic” to discuss, and thus use the word “headship” to describe aspects of their theology, the reality is that the full doctrine of complementarianism insists on many other role distinctions that men and women must align with. These roles are often not found directly in Scripture as obligations; rather, they are cultural norms that have an imputed theology about them, such as the man going off to work his 9-5 job while the wife stays at home to cook and clean. The complementarian view looks at the way men and women are created and attempts to deduce what God must have intended for men and women to do with regard to the family unit and within the body of Christ, while ultimately having little Scriptural support for the conclusions reached.


HEADSHIP, on the other hand, is completely distinct from feminism and does not have a feminist expression (at least that I’ve seen). It ordinarily isn’t listed as a distinct structural component of marriages, often being taken as a singular component within true complementarianism. Yet to suggest that headship must also always be accompanied by other complementarian views is irrational. Headship, by itself, simply states that God gave men the authority over their own households to decide how they ought to be run. Instead of assuming that women are designed by God to fold laundry and men are designed by God to mow the yard, if a man so chooses, he may exercise his headship authority to delegate the responsibility of mowing the yard to his wife while he folds the laundry – or, if he so chooses, that she does both and he watches the football game.

Many women object: “That’s not fair!” And it certainly doesn’t seem so, if the man is ungodly. But I’ll echo /u/RedPillWonder, who wrote a fantastic post which I’ll paraphrase (you can go to his history for the full thing): The wife’s obligation to submit to and respect her husband is not contingent on his fulfillment to love her as Christ loves the Church, and vice versa. I’ve written before on 1 Peter 3, showing that even for non-believers who were guaranteed to be ungodly, the wife was still expected to live in submission to him with a gentle and kind spirit toward him, and that this is set up in the passage as paralleled with the way a slave should submit to an oppressive master or the way Jesus submitted to the authorities who crucified him. No, it’s not fair. But it’s godly. Yes, you will fail, just as he will. But always remember that these obligations are independent, not interdependent.

The key aspect of headship is that the husband decides how his own household is to be run. There is no eisegetical attempt to stretch Scripture to endorse why women should cook and clean while the husband fixes the toilet. He plots the course and decides how the ship will get there. The wife helps him along the way, not defying him on the basis that “God created women to be better at cooking, so I’d rather cook the meals than do that other stuff you want me doing.” Of course, this doesn’t mean a man can’t delegate domains to his wife. He doesn’t need to micromanage her. But he does need to accept responsibility for those areas which are delegated to her because they are ultimately still part of his domain, not hers.

In this, I disagree with those who stretch passages like Titus 2:3-5 to suggest that the house is the woman’s domain and not subject to her husband’s leadership. I laugh at the concept of the “man cave,” where men have defaulted so much authority over the home to their wives that they only have the frame to insist on a small corner in the basement to decorate as they choose. The entire house is his – and while he may trust her with much of the decor and maintenance, it is still ultimately his domain and he is the one responsible for its upkeep, which she helps him with, as that is her function within a headship structure: to be his helper.

Yes, this places an immense amount of responsibility for the well-being of the kingdom on the man – not only his personal kingdom, but God’s heavenly Kingdom on earth too! He’d better be a man worth living up to that responsibility. This is what headship demands of him. And what the red pill teaches us is that a woman, even if she agrees with headship and knows it’s wrong to divorce, will likely leave a man if she believes he is ultimately a dead-end for her. So, no … you don’t get to insist that she follow your crappy leadership “because the Bible says so” – you can expect she’d rather sin by divorcing you than sin by resenting you.

“Headship” Gone Wrong

The word “headship” is often misused in modern churchianity. Instead of referring to a man’s God-given authority over the home, it gets misapplied to reference God’s authority over man in how he treats his wife, undermining the whole concept in the first place. To be clearer: the word often gets used to imply that God micro-manages men to a point that the actual exchange of authority is little more than a phantom transfer for the woman’s benefit. Take, for example, this article from the self-professed “Council on Biblical Manhood and Womanhood.” Sounds like an authoritative body to decide these things, right? Let’s walk through it.

  • The Wife is Primary

I kid you not: the article’s very first point is that “Christlike male headship means that you see the spiritual nourishment of your wife as your primary duty.” Apparently our primary duty is not to God, but our wives. It has nothing to do with advancing God’s Kingdom into the nations, but to “nurture” God’s Kingdom within your own little household. What a joke. I also love the exaggeration of calling this a “primary” duty and using Ephesians 5:28-30 as the reference. Show me where it says anywhere that this is a “primary” duty.

Yes, the husband is responsible for the sanctification of his wife – but this is not his “primary” duty. God says the purpose of marriage is “to produce godly offspring” (Malachi 2:15). If the husband is to lead the marriage toward the fulfillment of the purpose God gave for the marriage, then THIS is his primary duty: to make disciples (i.e. godly offspring). Yes, he should begin with his wife and children, but he cannot teach them how to be discipler-makers if he is not showing them by how he makes disciples outside the home as well.

More to the point: what does this have to do with headship/authority? If I were to re-word his point, it would be more accurate to write: “Part of being a Christlike male headship husband means that you see the spiritual nourishment of your wife as your primary one of your dutyies.” That’s a statement I can agree with.

  • One Wife

When he writes “headship means that you love just one wife” – does he mean you can have more, but you’re only allowed to love one? Obviously not. So, the word “love” there is superfluous. He really means that a man should only have one wife (at least if he’s to be in a position of authority within the Church). But note that he feels compelled to add the word “love” there to show extra emphasis on how good a man should treat his wife, because that’s really the point of his article rather addressing biblical standards. By the way, note that he didn’t cite a reference for this one.

Headship is an authority structure. Was David not head over his many wives? Was Solomon, with his hundreds of wives, not head of them? The authority structure is distinct from the issue of how many people you have authority over. If I were to rewrite this statement it would read either: (1) “Christlike male headship means that you love just one have authority over each and every wife in your household,” or (2) “Christlike male headship means Being a leader in the Church requires that you love have just one wife.” Those are statements I can get behind.

  • Know the Lord

He writes that “headship means that you train yourself to know the Lord in a vibrant way.” This has nothing to do with authority structures within marriage. A better re-write would be: “Christlike male headship means that is best expressed when you train yourself to know the Lord in a vibrant way.” I can agree to that.

  • Her Interests First

No joke, actual quote: “Christlike male headship means on date night/vacations, you think first, ‘What would she like to do?’ not, ‘What would I like to do?'” He concludes: “She will love you for it.” Haha! Look, I’m all for rewarding a respectful, satisfying wife with things you know she enjoys and values. But the idea that a man must exercise headship in a way that defers to his wife and that he’s not allowed to have his own wants and desires is unbiblical and inconsistent with what we see in Jesus throughout Scripture. By the way – where’s his verse to back this one up? Oh yeah, that’s another one without it. This would be better written: “Christlike male headship means can involve, at times, on date night/vacations, you think first, ‘What would she like to do Do I want to reward this woman I care about?’ not, ‘What would I like to do What would she like to do?'”

  • Hold the Baby

He says, “Christlike male headship means that at dinner, after a long day at work, you hold the baby so your wife, frazzled from kids and home, can eat first.” He gives no verse to back himself up, so let me give one instead: Luke 17:7-10 has something to say about this: “Suppose one of you has a servant plowing or looking after the sheep. Will he say to the servant when he comes in from the field, ‘Come along now and sit down to eat’? Won’t he rather say, ‘Prepare my supper, get yourself ready and wait on me while I eat and drink; after that you may eat and drink’? Will he thank the servant because he did what he was told to do? So you also when you have done everything you were told to do should say, ‘We are unworthy servants; we have only done our duty.'” Notice that the master isn’t working hard in the field and coming home to ask for his food to be prepared. The SERVANT is the one who is working in the field and then comes home and is asked to do more work rather than getting to take a break. While I recognize that there is some distinction between wives and servants, the principles within the headship authority structure still apply, which is why 1 Peter 3 is written as it is.

I’ll reword this one: “Christlike male headship means that at dinner, after a long day at work, you hold the baby so your wife, frazzled from kids and home, have the right, if you so choose, to ask your wife to cook you dinner so you can eat first.” Would this be the best idea in modern culture? Probably not, given the feminist tendencies most women have today. But as a descriptor of biblical headship, this statement is MUCH more accurate.

  • Apologize

“Christlike male headship means, when conflict happens (as it will), you lead in apologizing.” Again, no verse for this one. Now, I’ll note, in all these re-wordings I’m going to interpret “means” as “involves” going forward. Headship is literally just an authority structure. The “Christlike” part is what he’s trying to get at, but by saying “means,” it’s as if he’s trying to re-define the term/phrase. That said, ignoring the difference between “means” as a definition matter and “involves” as a matter of inclusiveness, let’s re-word it: “Christlike male headship means, when if conflict happens (as it will if you’re a blue pill idiot), you lead in apologizing resolving it.”

  • Show Strength

Woohoo! One I actually pseudo-agree with. Maybe his explanation could use some tweaking, but let’s celebrate the commonality while we can and move on.

  • Take a Hit

“Christlike male headship means that you put yourself in harm’s way, gladly taking a hit to protect your family (and the weak).” Where did the “and the weak” section come from? How does my authority over my wife suddenly equate to me jumping in front of a bullet for a guy down the street from me? That aside, I’m not at all opposed to protecting my family. I’m just confused about how often this situation actually comes up? Regarding physical danger, I’m not sure how often you and your wife are held at gun-point or threatened by a man trying to punch your wife in the face and not you so that you’d have to jump in the way … but it’s never happened for me.

  • Solicit Wisdom

He was doing so well with this one until the end: “Christlike male headship means that like the best leaders – generals, presidents, coaches, and so on – you solicit gobs of wisdom from wise counselors (namely, your wife).” I love his follow-up here: “If your relationship is like mine, she will put you to shame in this category.” If she’s so wise and you’re so unwise, dude, why are we reading an article by you in the first place? His answer would, of course, have to be: “Because my wife told me to write it and I learned all this from her.”

Yes, your wife is wise in many areas. Yes, you should absolutely hear what she has to say and weigh it carefully. No, you should not will-nilly assume your wife is wise on any particular issue just because she’s your wife. If I’m fixing my lawn mower, I’m not going to solicit her “wisdom.” When I’m arguing a case in court against a wife and I need to conceptualize how she and her attorney will present their case … yeah, I’m going to ask my wife how a woman might perceive the issue, and her input is often helpful.

If I were to re-word this one, I’d probably add after “wife” – “in contexts that she is likely to have more experience and/or insight than I am.”

  • Die to Yourself

“Christlike male headship means you die to yourself daily.” I would make no changes to this statement. But look at his explanation: “… for the good of my wife and my family.” Yes, we want their good. But this is not the reason Jesus died. It was A reason GOD had Jesus die – because of his love for his children. But JESUS died to bring glory to his father and out of obedience to him. In the same way, your obligation to “die to yourself daily” is not “for the good of your wife and family,” as the author suggests, though they certainly benefit from it the same way we benefit from Christ’s death. Rather, it is for God’s glory and out of obedience to him that we do it. Always keep your priorities straight here.


Biblical headship is an authority structure. It is not a collection of ideas about how a man ought to treat his wife. Those are peripheral aspects – and they may be quite biblical – but they are not headship itself. The authority to lead in the home is not synonymous with a man’s obligation to love his wife – though both are equally and separately true. Failing to recognize the separation between these two leads to inappropriate results, such as a wife believing the husband’s authority is contingent on him doing for her all the things that ridiculous article spells out.

Biblical headship simply states that a man has the authority from God to lead his home as he sees fit. The wife does not have dominion over the home or raisin the children. Those are his responsibility. Her role is to help him with those responsibilities. If he trusts her, he will delegate some of these responsibilities to her with minimal oversight. If she is untrustworthy, giving her carte blanche would be a poor use of a man’s headship and he should take a more involved role.

Just as you have headship of your wife, Christ has headship of you. Just as your wife tries to usurp as much control and dominion over your household, so do you to God’s – which you shouldn’t get if you are untrustworthy. Just as a husband does well to delegate (rather than micromanage) categorical responsibilities to his wife (rather than individual tasks) if she is trustworthy, so also, if you are trustworthy, will God delegate categorical responsibilities to you within his Kingdom (see the parables of the minas/talents, for example).

Meditate on this: that my point in this post is not to preach to the wives (who have their own sub), but to the men (who have their own spiritual head). 1 Cor. 11:3.