J. Lee Grady: Christian women should not marry men who believe the Bible

Listen up ladies, J. Lee Grady has a message for you. “If you are a woman of God, don’t sell your spiritual birthright by marrying a guy who doesn’t deserve you.” “Don’t settle for less than God’s best.” That’s right, demand your right to the single best man ever to exist other than Jesus. If you marry a guy that doesn’t have the wisdom and wealth of Solomon, the evangelistic zeal of Paul, the strength of Sampson, and the prowess of David, you are selling your birthright. Just by existing you deserve the amalgamation of all positive characteristics in one super-awesome man who has zero flaws.

Think that sounds over the top? Here’s the article.

What I find most amazing about the article is that out of the “10 [types of] men Christian women should never marry,” his first category is unbelievers, but his tenth category is men that have the audacity to actually believe the Bible. He certainly wouldn’t approve of me and my Scripture-quoting ways. In category one, Grady writes:

“Please write 2 Corinthians 6:14 on a Post-it note and tack it on your computer at work. It says, “Do not be bound together with unbelievers; for what partnership have righteousness and lawlessness, or what fellowship has light with darkness?” (NASB). This is not an outdated religious rule. It is the Word of God for you today.”

At this point, it seems like he accepts that the Bible is still applicable, and that those of us who call ourselves “Christians” ought to follow it. Sounds like something I would say. But look what he says in category ten:

“Some Christian guys today believe marriage is about male superiority. They may quote Scripture and sound super-spiritual, but behind the façade of husbandly authority is deep insecurity and pride that can morph into spiritual abuse. First Peter 3:7 commands husbands to treat their wives as equals.”

Watch out for those guys that have Scripture to back up their positions on gender roles. If he so much as mentions Ephesians 5:22-24, that’s spiritual abuse! Forget for a second how preposterous the phrase “spiritual abuse” is, what Grady is saying here is that it is abusive to believe any part of Scripture he doesn’t like. This claim he backs up by saying that 1 Peter 3:7 (apparently an acceptable scripture, unlike Ephesians 5:22-24) “commands husbands to treat their wives as equals.” So let’s look at this Grady-approved Bible verse, and see if it says what he claims it does. Since he used the NASB for his quote in category one, we will use that version for continuity.

“You husbands in the same way, live with your wives in an understanding way, as with someone weaker, since she is a woman; and show her honor as a fellow heir of the grace of life, so that your prayers will not be hindered.”

Dang, I’m just not seeing the “treat your wife as an equal” thing. In fact, it kinda looks like the verse actually says not to treat your wife as an equal, but rather as someone weaker! Maybe he just got the wrong verse. Lets look at the whole passage for context, and see if we can find what he’s talking about.

“In the same way, you wives, be submissive to your own husbands so that even if any of them are disobedient to the word, they may be won without a word by the behavior of their wives, as they observe your chaste and respectful behavior. Your adornment must not be merely external—braiding the hair, and wearing gold jewelry, or putting on dresses;  but let it be the hidden person of the heart, with the imperishable quality of a gentle and quiet spirit, which is precious in the sight of God. For in this way in former times the holy women also, who hoped in God, used to adorn themselves, being submissive to their own husbands;  just as Sarah obeyed Abraham, calling him lord, and you have become her children if you do what is right without being frightened by any fear. You husbands in the same way, live with your wives in an understanding way, as with someone weaker, since she is a woman; and show her honor as a fellow heir of the grace of life, so that your prayers will not be hindered.”

Somehow, I still don’t see the basis for Grady’s claim that this verse instructs “husbands to treat their wives as equals. Instead, I see a command to wives to submit to their husbands, even going so far as to call them “lord,” and a command to husbands to treat their wives as someone weaker, because they are women. Damn, that sorta seems like the exact opposite of what Grady claimed it said. Maybe that’s why he didn’t actually quote the verse, like he did with 2 Corinthians 6:14 in category one.

So watch out, all you single Christian ladies, for men who actually believe what the Bible says. Believing the Bible and trying to follow it is abusive. Oh, and good luck finding that perfect guy who isn’t an unbeliever, but also doesn’t believe the Bible. According to J. Lee Grady, you are selling your birthright if you don’t find him.

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19 thoughts on “J. Lee Grady: Christian women should not marry men who believe the Bible

  1. My first rule about women – she must be Christian and she must pray, and she must wear a head covering whilst doing so.

    I am still single. I am very happy about being single.

    Notice how I didn’t say anything about fatness, sluttyness, hamster feeding or attitude? No need to. My first rule about women fixes all.

    Here is my second rule about women – don’t. Stay single, offer your life to service in the church. Make sure it is the right church. The Orthodox Church.

    With these two rules, your life can be as happy and meaningful as mine. Or even better.

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  2. @ Brough Paul

    In light of your rule #2, what is the point of your rule #1? Seems you should be able to go down to only one rule and have the exact same outcome.

    As to dedicating my life to “the church,” my life is dedicated to Christ, not to an organization. Happiness and meaningfulness is not lacking, yet I refuse to be the watchman that sees the sword approaching and fails to sound the trumpet (Ezekiel 33:6). This blog is my trumpet, and I sound it to the the best of the ability of my trembling lips and empty lungs.

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  3. Sigh.

    If I were forced to pick a church (let it not be so!) I’d be tempted to go with the Orthodox Catholic Church (a.k.a. Eastern Orthodox). At least they’re consistent. They claim that the Bible is important but their traditions take precedence.

    Mr. Grady says, “Oh, we believe the Bible,” with fingers crossed behind his back. We believe unless it might reduce our income, or it disagrees with what the church leadership says, or it offends women, or…

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  4. @deLaune

    I can respect consistency. But in light of Mark 7:6-9, what you wrote is just as scathing a rebuke of the OCC as of Mr. Grady.

    May we never elevate a church to the throne that ought to be occupied by Christ.

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  5. Pingback: The perfect wedding… | Moose Norseman

  6. Pingback: Tradition | Moose Norseman

  7. ”So watch out, all you single Christian ladies, for men who actually believe what the Bible says. Believing the Bible and trying to follow it is abusive. Oh, and good luck finding that perfect guy who isn’t an unbeliever, but also doesn’t believe the Bible. According to J. Lee Grady, you are selling your birthright if you don’t find him.”

    And here is one of the websites that exemplify this:
    http://www.quiveringdaughters.com/2009/04/daughters-of-patriarchy-codependency.html
    http://www.quiveringdaughters.com/2009/04/daughters-of-patriarchy-spiritual-abuse.html
    http://www.quiveringdaughters.com/2011/07/gentle-reality-check-for-daughters-of.html

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  8. @infowarrior1:

    Not being familiar with you, or the organization that published the article, the title made me think that it would go beyond calling on men to lead, and blame any sin and rebellion found in women on men not leading properly. I pulled up the article and glanced only at its length, not its substance, and decided that it would take a good block of time to adequately parse it. When I did get that time and began to read it, I was pleasantly surprised. I would certainly quibble with the author about his use of certain terms, and on some minor points, but I wholeheartedly agree with what I see as his main point–a leader leads by leading, not by reminding everyone he is the leader. Now, much as I agree with that, it is a message for those who are ready for it, and there are a few groups I would certainly not point towards this article. Rebellious women could certainly use it as justification for rebellion, and men who have not recognized the way they are called to lead their families could use it as justification for continued inaction. It is aimed at the man who realizes he is called to lead, but has gone about that by simply announcing “Hey everyone, I’m the leader, I’m in charge.”

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  9. Articles like Grady’s are always showing up on FB/social media feeds. Some are insightful, others provocative…This one is relevant. Christian women wish to marry within the Church and this article addresses common concerns.

    That said, I agree with your comments regarding Grady’s tenth point. Regardless of his ideology (of which I know little about), he touched on a valid issue. There are some “control freaks” who could care less about the multi-faceted relationship between a husband and wife. Grady could have used different verses to illustrate this (ex. James 1:19-20, 2 Timothy 3:1-8, 1 Corinthians 13:4-7, etc.).

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  10. @ GreenWinterLeaves:

    Those verses are rather disparate, and none deal directly with a marriage relationship. However, the second, 2 Tim 3:1-8, does show the value of the God-ordained system Grady attacks–removing the authority of the husband only makes it easier for the wicked to creep into houses and lead away weak women (v6-7).

    Now, are there control freaks? Yes. Many of them are women, as the propensity for leadership is so systematically eliminated in men by the church. However, some are men. Accepting the biblical doctrine of family structure does not make one a control freak, rather it protects from it. The Biblical model tells a man that he is responsible for the temporal and spiritual well-being of those entrusted to his care, and is accountable to Jesus Christ as head of the Church for the performance of this duty. (1 Cor 11:3)

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