Visit Probe's website Feminism made promises it couldn't keep. Probe's Sue Bohlin examines ten lines of feminism identified by Dr.
Toni Grant from a Christian perspective. This essay examines the ten lies of feminism that Dr. Toni Grant suggests in her book Being a Woman. These promises sounded good, so good that many women deserted their men and their children or rejected the entire notion of marriage and family, in pursuit of "themselves" and a career. These pursuits, which emphasized self-sufficiency and individualism, were supposed to enhance a woman's quality of life and improve her options, as well as her relations with men.
Now, a decade or so later, women have had to face the fact that, in many ways, feminism and liberation made promises that could not be delivered. We were fed an illusion that women, being the superior sex, have an inexhaustible supply of physical and emotional energy that enable us to juggle a career, family, friendships and volunteer service.
Proponents of feminism declared that not only can women do what men do, but we ought to do what men do. Since men can't do what women can do--have babies--this put a double burden on women. It wasn't enough that women were already exhausted from the never-ending tasks of child-rearing and homemaking; we were told that women needed to be in the work force as well, contributing to the family financially.
Scripture presents a different picture for men and women. The Bible appears to make a distinction between each gender's primary energies. The commands to women are generally in the realm of our relationships, which is consistent with the way God made women to be primarily relational, being naturally sensitive to others and usually valuing people above things. Scripture never forbids women to be gainfully employed; in fact, the virtuous woman of Proverbs 31 is engaged in several part-time business ventures, in real estate and manufacturing.
Nonetheless, it is the excellent care of her husband, her children, her home and her community that inspires the praise she is due. Titus 2 instructs older women to mentor younger women, and teach them to care for their husbands and children and homemaking responsibilities. The God-given strengths of a woman were given to bring glory to God through her womanly differences Lie 2: Men and Women are Fundamentally the Same Apart from some minor biological differences, feminism strongly suggested that males and females are fundamentally the same.
Culture, it announced, was responsible for turning human blank slates into truck-wielding boys and doll-toting girls. This lie has been very effective at changing the culture. Men, for instance, tend to be more goal-oriented and competitive, where women are more relational and cooperative.
Men are active; women are verbal. This is intuitively obvious to the adults in our audience, but it is often new news to high school and college students. We find adults nodding with smiles of recognition, some of them nudging each other in the ribs. In the younger members of the audience, though, we see "the lights come on" in their eyes as they are exposed to something that is obvious and they probably already knew was true, but feminism's worldview had been feeding them a lie.
They have been so immersed in this cultural myth that they had accepted it without question. One young man came up to me after a session and said he totally disagreed with me, that there are no real differences between males and females. I asked him if he treated his guy friends the same way he treated his girl friends, and he said, "Of course!
With a smile, I suggested he come talk to me in ten years after he'd had a chance to experience real life! The truth is that God created significant differences between males and females.
We can see evidence of this in the fact that Scripture gives different commands for husbands and wives, which are rooted in the differing needs and divinely-appointed roles of men and women.
Desirability is Enhanced by Achievement The third lie of feminism is that the more a woman achieves, the more attractive and desirable she becomes to men. The importance of achievement to a man's sense of self--an element of masculinity that is, we believe, God-given--was projected onto women.
Feminism declared that achieving something, making a mark in the world, was the only measure of success that merited the respect of others. Women who believed this myth found themselves competing with men.
Now, competition is appropriate in the business and professional world, but it's disastrous in relationships. Men do respect and admire accomplished women, just as they do men, but personal relationships operate under a different set of standards. Men most appreciate a woman's unique feminine attributes: Women have been shocked to discover that their hard-won accomplishments haven't resulted in great relationships with men. Sometimes, being overeducated hampers a woman's ability to relate to men.
Men's egos are notoriously fragile, and they are by nature competitive. It's threatening to many men when a woman achieves more, or accomplishes more, or knows more than they do.
Feminism didn't warn women of the double standard in relationships: The question naturally arises, then, Is it bad for a woman to have a higher degree of education than the man in a relationship? Is it troublesome when a woman is smarter than the man? Should a woman "dumb down" in order to get or keep her man?
In the words of the apostle Paul, "May it never be! The answer is for women to understand that many men feel threatened and insecure about this area of potential competition, and maintain an attitude of humility and sensitivity about one's strengths; as Romans exhorts us, "Honor[ing] one another above yourselves" Not surprisingly, God already knew about the disparity between the sexes on the issue of achievement.
Throughout the Bible, men are called to trust God as they achieve whatever God has called them to do. It's important for men to experience personal significance by making a mark on the world. But God calls women to trust Him in a different area: A woman's value is usually not in providing history-changing leadership and making great, bold moves, but in loving and supporting those around us, changing the world by touching hearts.
Once in a while, a woman does make her mark on a national or global scale: But women like these are the exception, not the rule. And we don't have to feel guilty for not being "exceptional. The Myth of One's "Unrealized Potential" Lie number four says that all of us--but especially women--have tremendous potential that simply must be realized. To feminism's way of thinking, just being average isn't acceptable: This causes two problems. First, women are deceived into thinking they are one of the elite, the few, the special.
Reality, though, is that most women are ordinary, one of the many. All of us are uniquely gifted by God, but few women are given visible, high- profile leadership roles, which tend to be the only ones that feminism deems valuable. We run into trouble when we're operating under a set of beliefs that don't coincide with reality! Consequently, many women are operating under unrealistically high expectations of themselves.
When life doesn't deliver on their hopes, whether they be making class valedictorian, beauty pageant winner, company president, or neurosurgeon, women are set up for major disappointment. Just being a cog in the wheel of your own small world isn't enough. This brings us to the second problem. A lot of women beat themselves up for not accomplishing greatness. Instead of investing their life's energies in doing well those things they can do, they grieve what and who they are not.
Just being good, or being good at what they do, isn't enough if they're not the best. And we ought to not worry about being ordinary as if there were some stigma to it. Scripture says that God is pleased to use ordinary people, because that's how He gets the most glory. See 1 Corinthians 1: There is honor in being an ordinary person in the hand of an extraordinary God. Sexual Sameness The fifth lie of feminism is that men and women are the same sexually. This lie comes to us courtesy of the same evil source that brought us the lies of the sexual revolution.
The truth is that women can't separate sex from love as easily as men can. For women, sex needs to be an expression of love and commitment. Without these qualities, sex is demeaning, nothing more than hormones going crazy. The cost of sex is far greater for women than for men. Sex outside of a committed, loving relationship--I'm talking about marriage here--often results in unplanned pregnancy, sexually transmitted diseases, and profound heartbreak.
Every time a woman gives her body away to a man, she gives a part of her heart as well. Sexual "freedom" has brought new degrees of heartache to millions of women. The lie of sexual equality has produced widespread promiscuity and epidemic disease.
No wonder so many women are struggling with self-esteem! God's commands concerning sex take into account the fact that men and women are not the same sexually or any other way. He tells us to exercise self-control before marriage, saving all sexual expression for the constraints of a marriage relationship, and then to keep the marriage bed pure once we are married.
When we follow these guidelines, we discover that God's laws provide protection for women: This high standard also protects men by providing a safe channel for their sexual energies. Both chaste single men, and faithful husbands, are kept safe from sexual diseases, unwanted pregnancies with women other than their wives, and the guilt of sexual sin. The Denial of Maternity Many women postponed marriage and childbearing to pursue their own personal development and career goals.
This perspective denies the reality of a woman's reproductive system and the limitations of time. Childbearing is easier in a woman's 20s and 30s than in her 40s. Plus, there is a physical cost; science has borne out the liabilities that older women incur for themselves and their babies. Midlife women are more prone to have problems getting pregnant, staying pregnant, and then experiencing difficult deliveries.
The risk of conceiving a child with Down's Syndrome is considerably higher in older mothers. When women refuse their God-ordained roles and responsibilities, they open themselves to spiritual deception and temptations.