Female hypoagency is ubiquitous

One of the common denominators across a wide spectrum including feminists, egalitarians, complementarians, “Christian” dating and marital advice, “Christian” counseling and even the federal headship crew is female hypo-agency.

Full metal Patriarch did a good job at pointing this out with If your husband is a godly man, submission will be easy! in the Christian dating/marital advice crowd.

This almost always follows the variations of “If a man does, then women…”

Feminists use this in terms of their call against victim blaming. Well, if men would only stop raping, while excusing women for their poor choices such as getting blackout drunk. Men shouldn’t rape, but I highly doubt that the men who rape actually care about their moral state or not doing harm to women.

Feminists and egalitarians use this to argue against Biblical headship, but twist it to push women in authority. “If only men wouldn’t abuse their authority…” which turns into men shouldn’t have authority at all.

This is common in complementarian denial of actual headship in practice though displaying lip service to it. The Christian husband can’t be trusted to wield authority in a right way, thus they concede that the husband has a tiebreak vote if he and his wife disagree. “If only we could trust the husband to use authority in a right way… then the wife could submit to him.”

Federal headship is the weird but common case where basically Christians of varying feminist and patriarchal backgrounds claim that the wife is a reflection of the husband. If the wife doesn’t want to have sex with her husband then her husband is doing something wrong. If a wife doesn’t want to obey her husband then the husband is doing something wrong. “If only the man would obey God in everything, then the wife would want to submit to him.”

All of this stems from the underlying assumption of “men bad, women good” where women end up in a faultless or moral compass situation.

This is also why any Christian woman’s Bible study on submission almost inevitably ends up as 90-100% talking about what the men should be doing.

Ephesians 5:22 Wives, subject yourselves to your own husbands, as to the Lord. 23 For the husband is the head of the wife, as Christ also is the head of the church, He Himself being the Savior of the body. 24 But as the church is subject to Christ, so also the wives ought to be to their husbands in everything.

25 Husbands, love your wives, just as Christ also loved the church and gave Himself up for her, 26 so that He might sanctify her, having cleansed her by the washing of water with the word, 27 that He might present to Himself the church in all her glory, having no spot or wrinkle or any such thing; but that she would be holy and blameless.

The importance of Ephesians 5 cannot be overstated. Wives have their own role, separate and independent of what the husband is doing, to be accountable to God for and to carry out with all of her ability.

Likewise, husbands have the duty to love their wife for the purpose of sanctification (and not her feelings). This means to point out areas of sin where she should repent and do right instead. This follows the example of Christ, the second Adam, to lead His Church to be reconciled to God rather than the first Adam who followed his wife instead of God.

Conversations on these topics must always be vigilant that they don’t trend toward female hypoagency. Both men and women are responsible for their own roles to play in relationships, even if the other person is doing right or doing wrong.


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26 Responses to Female hypoagency is ubiquitous

  1. cameron232 says:

    There’s a parallel secular/political version where it’s observed that men, having been in charge forever, have really dorked our world up. If only women were in charge there’d be no war, no climate change, etc. It’s their turn now.

  2. CS says:

    @cameron232, that version is relatively easy to discard. So easy, even some feminists have recognized it as useless. Besides, it took women’s suffrage and overt political power to really mess things up.

  3. jorgey says:

    Islam will eventually take over because the Bible allows too much wiggle room to feminism.

  4. jorgey says:

    For example, “Ephesians 5:22 Wives, subject yourselves to your own husbands, as to the Lord.” Fine, but one verse earlier “Everyone submit to everyone in the fear of God.” Facepalm. Relying on THIS book is just a losing strategy in the end because the Catholics let women add fake verses like Ephesians 5:21 and the Pericope Adulterae in John 8, out of gynocentric sympathy created by Mary worship or something like that.

  5. elspeth says:

    No, Jorey. Ephesians 5:21 does not offer feminism any wiggle room at all. If that were the case, children of a certain age who confess Christ could just as easily claim that Ephesians 5:21 negates Ephesians 6:1. I have been in the church my entire life and I have never, not even once, heard any person make that claim.

    Only those with an agenda fail to acknowledge (or are unable to even recognize), that the letter to the Ephesians is one in which Paul is addressing the multiple areas of relationship and authority that we all encounter within the church, the home, and the larger society.

    When I was a child and younger woman, I never heard anyone claim that Ephesians 5:22 was open to debate because of Ephesians 5:21. Never. That tendency is something that gained traction in the 90s. It is partly because men -in their ever increasingly and sniveling attempt to placate women- allowed to take hold as they rebranded Jesus from the lamb of God who gave Himself as the perfect sacrifice to something they call a “servant leader”, a term I have come to regard as little more than an oxymoronic term in the same vein as jumbo shrimp, act natural, and unbiased opinon.

  6. cameron232 says:

    “Islam will eventually take over because the Bible allows too much wiggle room to feminism.”

    Possibly but my impression is Muslims are rapidly secularizing too. And traditional Islam permits birth control (not sure about abortion) whereas traditional Christianity doesn’t so there’s a chance Christian natalism will win. But I agree that feminism results in few babies.

    Catholics didn’t add fake feminist verses no matter what neoreactionaries and others claim on the world wide web. And as I demonstrated it was Protestant nations that created feminism, embraced it earlier and more fully, gave women the right to vote, etc. Nothing to do with veneration of Mary who was the essence of feminine submission, motherhood, obedience to God including her Son, etc.

  7. cameron232 says:

    Female hypoagency may very well be inevitable, but it is also encouraged and probably amplified by gynocentrism and the feminine imperative. E.g. the trial of Elizabeth Holmes where the defense is going to be based on her being a victim of her male former “business” partner.

  8. elspeth says:

    I would argue that the embrace of feminism was more of a European element than a Protestant thing, I kow that this is the case because in parts of the world where Protestant Christianity is the dominant form, they still shun woman worship and male headship is highly culturally ingrained. They may be dysfunctional in a million other ways, but they ain’t feminist.

    Additionally, Dalrock never convinced me fully about the role of chivalry in modern feminist theory, but there’s no denying that 1) chivalry was shot through with femcentric idoleogy, and 2) chivalry was at its height during the medieval period, a time in which Christianity and Catholicism were synonyms. Luther wasn’t even born during most of that.

    I have been often accused lately of “blaming men” despite my long, long track record of holding women’s feet to the fire. Nevertheless, there is no denying that from The Fall of the perfect man (Adam) onward, men have a track record of being turned away from the most excellent way because of their love of women. Men are coming out of that stupor over the past couple of decades because now there is almost nothing to gain from it. Perhaps this dark period will give way to a dawn at some point, and sanity will be restored but there is more than enough blame to go around.

    You’re right though Cameron, about Catholic countries being the last to jump on the women’s suffrage bandwagon, though.

  9. cameron232 says:

    @Elspeth, “It is partly because men -in their ever increasingly and sniveling attempt to placate women”

    While I don’t think men should be let off the hook for placating women, it’s also true that women have and had (in the 90s) the ability to destroy marriages, families, men themselves and to make men quite miserable. Also, it’s much easier for women who are married to alpha males (a minority of the male population in any society) to submit. And men don’t have providership to “lord over her” to compel submission since women wanted to work and insisted. A beta man (or any man for that matter) can’t literally beat his wife into bloody submission. That might work for a Pashtun.

    Yes, I know you spread the blame among men and women fairly. Just something to get off my chest.

  10. cameron232 says:

    I have talked to English scholars who are Anglophiles who will tell you that a great deal of early feminism is English in origin. NW Europe has a strong tendency towards individualism, maybe for historic reasons maybe for biological reasons – who knows. Feminism probably has its roots in radical individualism. Yes, East Asians, Africans, Near Easterners, South Asians, etc. are less feminist.

    I would assume Dalrock made mention of Victorian England’s revival of romantic chivalry. I think this specific cultural movement certainly accelerated feminism. Female preachers were found among some Wesleyan descendents by the early 1800s. It’s also the case that Jewish leftism greatly encouraged 1960s-1970s leftism, although I think it’s the case of taking something that existed and dispersing it widely through media. Jews didn’t invent feminism that’s for sure. Early American feminism, the several waves (early 1800s, 1910s, etc). was prominent when there were very few Jews in American and they had little influence. Blame the WASPs, particularly the northern ones if you’re looking for a culprit.

  11. cameron232 says:

    Previous comment should read “1960s-1970s FEMINISM” although feminism is a subset of leftism.

  12. cameron232 says:

    It’s also the case that much of the non-European world, including non-European Christians is trending feminist. They’re just “behind” us. We’re the tip of the feminist spear. Hooray for us – NOT!! This is why some on the far right are gloating about Afghanistan – albeit this isn’t a healthy instinct. If we have to power to enact sharia, we have the power to restore traditional Christianity which actually encourages men to love and sanctify women.

  13. jorgey says:

    Traditional Christianity requires that nobody but monks have the Bible to read. That’s why it hasn’t been re-established, and won’t be, barring something like nuclear war and loss of printing capabilities and computing. If women have a Bible in their hand, women will rule, because there is enough liberal stuff in Paul for them to twist, not to mention the inauthentic Pericope Adulterae in John 8 again.

  14. cameron232 says:

    It doesn’t seem to me that you have to have public stoning of women to have a good society. Turd-world rural Pakistan does that. It’s one of the reasons it’s turd-world.

    Their ability to read and interpret words isn’t what “empowered” them.

    There’s nothing “liberal” in Paul’s epistles because Paul wasn’t a liberal.

    Birth control did a fair amount of this. The “traditional” Christianity of 1929 didn’t allow it.

  15. jorgey says:

    All that faith alone rehetoric is liberal. Sorry but Paul is a liberal, and if anyone really is Catholic they should see that Paul’s liberalism spawned Protestantism when the common man (or more importantly woman) finally got to read it. But also, anyone non-Catholic (because Catholics are blind to it) should see that Catholicism died at that time, because once the commoner has the Bible, continuing something called Catholicism is just cosplay essentially. The Bible with all of Paul’s liberalism being in everyone’s hands makes Catholicism as it was before impossible.

  16. jorgey says:

    “Birth control did a fair amount of this. The ‘traditional’ Christianity of 1929 didn’t allow it.”

    Two things here.

    One. The belief that sex should only be for procreation is from Epictetus, from Stoicism, not the Bible, and so as Christianity became more focused on the Bible and less on philosophy, via women having a Bible in their hands, it was either forgotten or actively rejected or both. Thus birth control via pills rather than self control became accepted.

    Two. Once its possible to make birth control pills, how can you stop it without executing those who make them? But you can’t do that because the inauthentic Pericope Adulterae says you can’t punish nobody but have to always just let them go saying “go and sin no more.” Thus Christianity failed the West in its source-book, not just in implementation. An implementation that took the source-book with a grain of salt or was just ignorant of much of it would have done better, oh and historically did actually.

  17. cameron232 says:

    I’m sorry you still haven’t demonstrated how Paul is a liberal. Liberalism is a 17th-ish century phenomena. I’m sure you have something in mind it just isn’t clear, Jorgey. Salvation is individual, not collective but that’s not the radical individualism of liberalism.

    “The belief that sex should only be for procreation is from Epictetus, from Stoicism, not the Bible”

    Sex has a unitive (within marriage) function and a reproductive function. The reproductive function is self evident to all human beings excepting little children. And Paul suggests it as the alternative to fornication.

    You make a common mistake of assuming the Bible is the only, or for that matter, the primary transmission of the Christian faith, as if it was written like and as a catechism. The people who were the 1st century audiences for the gospels, the epistles, didn’t have to be told that the most fundamental aspect of sex is babies. There’s no mention of sex being for babies because it was completely clear to the high context society/literary tradition that the NT was immediately written for. A lot of things aren’t said in the NT because the NT wasn’t written as or intended to be a catechism. Sola Scripture tends to drive towards this, although Luther used catechisms to teach. He meant something different by Sola Scriptura than most people do now. Nowadays they’re out of favor because they’re “not the Bible” although somehow popular books by Christian authors are valued for teaching.

  18. Lexet Blog says:

    Lol. Try reading Corinthians, Titus, and Timothy. Women are told to wear head coverings, not to dress to attract attention, to shut up in church, etc. 1 Corinthians 7:38 says it’s the father who determines if his daughter will marry. Widows/single women are told not to be idle gossipers.

    You are smoking crack

  19. Lexet Blog says:

    Paul’s writings are extremely based.

  20. Lexet Blog says:

    Sola scriptura is about church authority. Catholics will argue until the death that it’s the church that gets to interpret scripture because the church decided they could, and that we should obey because according to church history, the church has had a consistent line of succession since Peter.

    Those who point to sola scriptura are of the opinion that scripture is actually pretty clear, and is a matter of reading comprehension.

    As per catechisms and doctrinal statements, they are summations of principles and statements as to how denominations/sects interpret various passages.

  21. cameron232 says:

    Either the Church or the individual. The Orthodox have “equal” bishops and tend to look towards the ecumenical councils and (their favored) early church fathers.

    It doesn’t seem that reading comprehension is the issue since Luther, Calvin, Cranmer, Arminius, Sproul, Knox, Zwingli, …….. all had excellent reading comprehension. And that was mostly doctrinal and theological issues. Now you have basic moral issues and practices that weren’t disputed during the reformation coming under the scrutiny of sola scriptura.

  22. Lexet Blog says:

    Most saw eye to eye on everything. The key differences during the reformation were

    1- how far do you want to stray from RCC (many wanted to reform the teachings of the church as it stood) not many were separatists until later

    2- how to resolve OT laws and their application in modern times.

    A lot of the big debates came much later, when scholars were able to confirm that prophetic NT texts were indeed traceable to certain authors, etc.

    That has opened a can of worms in the reformed community because reformed theology was formed by men who rejected certain NT texts.

  23. cameron232 says:

    Anyway we wont solve what’s been disputed for 500 years so I didn’t post that to pick a fight. I guess the point is what’s not in the NT is sometimes not there because it was self evident and left unsaid.

  24. info says:

    “Federal headship is the weird but common case where basically Christians of varying feminist and patriarchal backgrounds claim that the wife is a reflection of the husband. If the wife doesn’t want to have sex with her husband then her husband is doing something wrong. If a wife doesn’t want to obey her husband then the husband is doing something wrong. “If only the man would obey God in everything, then the wife would want to submit to him.”

    Apply that to God and Ancient Israel. Now the heresy is more clear.

  25. aither3 says:

    All this theological discussion is as interesting as the “angels on pins” debate. The bottom line is that a feminized culture is already in the throws of self-destruction. When women are the final arbiters of whether or not their husband should rule over them, it is the women who are in charge.

  26. Sharkly says:

    Peter vouched for Paul’s writings:

    2 Peter 3:15 And account that the longsuffering of our Lord is salvation; even as our beloved brother Paul also according to the wisdom given unto him hath written unto you; 16 As also in all his epistles, speaking in them of these things; in which are some things hard to be understood, which they that are unlearned and unstable wrest, as they do also the other scriptures, unto their own destruction.

    Paul, a Roman Jew, said, “the gospel of the uncircumcision was committed unto me, as the gospel of the circumcision was unto Peter.”(Galatians 2:7)

    And Paul tells us of a Peter who was still quite fallible and had even “walked not uprightly according to the truth of the gospel”.(Galatians 2:14)

    So, if Peter (who is wrongly presumed to be the fountainhead of the Gentile church’s magisterium) was himself quite fallible, how now do those in Rome who spuriously claim to be the heirs of Peter’s office act as though their church leaders and church doctrines are now infallible like God Himself?

    God inspired the books of the Bible in their original form, and they were inerrant, but beyond that, the apostles themselves were fallible men who often disagreed amongst themselves.

    We Protestants just try to base our faith on what is inerrant, (God’s word) and not on what is fallible. (the traditions of men)

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