Jasmine points us to a rather heinous video of John Piper giving some blatantly misogynistic pastoral advice to Christian women. Pretty much it just boils down to a wheezy sort of used car salesman-sounding attempt to relegate women to being nothing other than wives and mothers. He just tells them to love being submissive wives and mothers who support and aid the gifts and distinctives of their husbands. Wow.
The assumption he makes about what all women just are supposed to be doing is quite astounding. What ever happened to the long-standing Christian theology of vocation? It has been part of the fabric of Christianity from the beginning that there is a radical diversity of charisms within the body of Christ, requiring all manner of different ministries, regardless of gender (leaving aside the thorny issue of ordination for the moment, which is a more serious matter, especially for the churches that persist in enforcing a male-only priesthood).
For Piper, the whole notion of how women might function as Christians is mediated through their identities as subordinate wives and nurturing mothers. Even were one to hold to an exclusively male theology of ordination, Piper’s notion of how men and women function as ministers in the church would still be deplorable because of how it insists that our ecclesial function is mediated through the family and marriage. This mode of subordinating the charismatic to the familial is profoundly contrary to the eschatological nature of the Christian gospel, especially in its Pauline dimensions.
It is also disgusting. It is truly sad how far the church still has to go in its attempt to purge away its long-standing misogyny.
Be sure to check out Jasmine’s comments on the video which are right on the money.