Several understandings of Christianity and Christian traditions place the authority of the church and the family in the man’s hands. But what happens when men take too much authority and beat their spouses with those hands?
According to a Southern Baptist Convention professor, much of the blame is in the man’s hands…but the blame is also put into women who do not accept their authority.
One reason that men abuse their wives is because women rebel against their husband’s God-given authority, a Southern Baptist scholar said Sunday in a Texas church.
This merits a new category at hx.net…let’s call it a classy.hack: blaming the victim. It’s probably a subcategory of a bad.hack.
Bruce Ware, professor of Christian theology at Southern Baptist Theological Seminary in Louisville, Ky., said women desire to have their own way instead of submitting to their husbands because of sin.
“And husbands on their parts, because they’re sinners, now respond to that threat to their authority either by being abusive, which is of course one of the ways men can respond when their authority is challenged–or, more commonly, to become passive, acquiescent, and simply not asserting the leadership they ought to as men in their homes and in churches,” Ware said from the pulpit of Denton Bible Church in Denton, Texas.
Violence in intimate relationships is never acceptable and is never justified. I accept that Ware is not justifying men’s actions so much as seeking out the root of the problem. However, I don’t think blaming the victims (often wives and spouses) for being too uppity is the way to go.
Thoughts? Do battered women challenge a “God-given” authority in ways that lead men to abuse them? Or is this just classy?
I want to clarify I’m not picking on the SBC, but I am picking on public statements and theological points presented that I do not think are reflective of a helpful and empowering Christian ethic.