A Cry For Justice

Awakening the Evangelical Church to Domestic Violence and Abuse in its Midst

If the Apostles had been women — a parable about double standards for suffering oppression

Peta! When you were mocked, you answered back to those who mocked you!

But others mocking said, “They are filled with new wine.” But Peta, standing with the eleven, lifted up her voice and addressed them: “Men of Judea and all who dwell in Jerusalem, let this be known to you, and give ear to my words. For these people are not drunk, as you suppose, since it is only the third hour of the day. (Acts 2:13-15, genders changed)

And you drew the Apostle Joanne into your bad, unsubmissive, defiant ways:

But seeing the man who was healed standing beside them, [the rulers and elders and scribes, with Annas the high priest and Caiaphas and John and Alexander, and all who were of the high-priestly family] had nothing to say in opposition. But when they had commanded [Peta and Joanne] to leave the council, they conferred with one another, saying, “What shall we do with these women? For that a notable sign has been performed through them is evident to all the inhabitants of Jerusalem, and we cannot deny it. But in order that it may spread no further among the people, let us warn them to speak no more to anyone in this name.”

So they called them and charged them not to speak or teach at all in the name of Jesus. But Peta and Joanne answered them, “Whether it is right in the sight of God to listen to you rather than to God, you must judge, for we cannot but speak of what we have seen and heard.”  (4:14-20)

And together, your bad example has taught all the Apostles to react defiantly to persecution and oppression!

But the high priest rose up, and all who were with him (that is, the party of the Sadducees), and filled with jealousy they arrested the apostles and put them in the public prison. But during the night an angel of the Lord opened the prison doors and brought them out, and said, “Go and stand in the temple and speak to the people all the words of this Life.” And when they heard this, they entered the temple at daybreak and began to teach.

. . . Then the captain with the officers went and brought them, but not by force, for they were afraid of being stoned by the people. And when they had brought them, they set them before the council. And the high priest questioned them, saying, “We strictly charged you not to teach in this name, yet here you have filled Jerusalem with your teaching, and you intend to bring this man’s blood upon us.” But Peta and the apostles answered, “We must obey God rather than men.” (5:17-29)

Have you not heard? Have you not read? That is NOT how Christians should react to suffering persecution and oppression! You should be following the example of Jesus!

He was oppressed, and he was afflicted, yet he opened not his mouth; like a lamb that is led to the slaughter, and like a sheep that before its shearers is silent, so he opened not his mouth. (Isaiah 53:7)

You ought to be ashamed of yourselves!

7 Comments

  1. Marah

    The ones who really need a change in thinking will likely just respond, “But the Bible is clear that women aren’t allowed as apostles. So this doesn’t apply.”

  2. Brenda R

    Marah,
    How does this not apply? The word “if” is huge here. “If” women had been apostles. If authorities tell you that you cannot proclaim the Gospel of Christ, will you remain silent? Are you going to do as they tell you? Will you remain oppressed because someone else tells you that you should? Jesus remained silent for a purpose. He was/is the God the Son. He had no reason to affirm or deny who he was. He knew who he was.

    Churches, former and present spouses and many “Christians” do not want to hear that abuse is happening in their midst. Does that mean that we should be silent? Should we allow this to continue because others are using Christ’s situation to compare his silence to those who are victims of domestic abuse? There is no comparison. We should not be silent.

    I am responding to this post and I pray that the God given “change of thinking” that I have had over the last few years doesn’t stop. I first and foremost pray that I will never stop professing that Jesus is Lord. After that, I will never stop spreading the news that abuse exists and needs to be addressed. God is still working today. We have no idea who he will call for His glory in the future, male or female. Women are used of God.

  3. Marah

    I don’t disagree with it, actually; I was pointing out that the people who really need to hear it (and change their thinking) will automatically reject the message because it’s easy for them to automatically respond with, “But it doesn’t apply to women because women aren’t allowed to be apostles.”

    • Well said, Marah.
      “it doesn’t apply to women because women aren’t allowed to be apostles” is an example of a person who has the underlying pre-supposition that 1) women are of less importance than men and 2) because of this, women have to suck it up and suffer whereas men can be free to complain and resist oppression.

      Such presuppositions are usually bolstered by surface justifications and rationalisations, like “women aren’t allowed to be apostles — Q.I.D.” but the underlying mindset is that women are less than men and so women don’t have the rights to justice that men do.

      It is usually impossible to debate effectively with such people because their underlying pre-suppositions are hidden, they keep them suppressed in murky darkness. Only when the pre-suppositions are brought to the light can you start having rational debate with such people. Jeff C testifies [Internet Archive link] to how he used to look on any woman who came into his office as someone less than a man. He had an attitude of superiority as a man talking to a woman. And he has un-learned that: with God’s grace it was brought it to the light and Jeff realised it was wrong and he changed his attitude.

  4. Brenda R

    Marah, I apologize. I completely read your comment incorrectly.

  5. beckylovesthelight

    Very thought provoking, Barbara! Thank you for this.

  6. Finding Answers

    Barbara replied:

    “it doesn’t apply to women because women aren’t allowed to be apostles” is an example of a person who has the underlying pre-supposition that 1) women are of less importance than men and 2) because of this, women have to suck it up and suffer whereas men can be free to complain and resist oppression.

    Men are not the only one’s affected by this thinking.

    Women can also be “contaminated”, depending on what they have been taught.

    (Writing through a nasty fog, as it descends and engulfs my fingertips.)

    Given my past, my subconscious became slightly tainted by a portion of this slant. Ironic, when you consider most of my work life was spent in “men’s only” jobs. Interesting, too, when you consider I have some well-developed skill sets normally ascribed to men.

    When I first started researching my way through a never-ending series of flashbacks that were occurring 24 / 7, the focus was mostly secular. I needed to identify the physical basis for what was happening on both the physical and non-physical levels.

    No surprise to me, the sources were pretty much evenly balanced between male and female.

    As the Holy Spirit led me through Christian – and “C”hristian – websites, He was opening my eyes to how Scripture can be twisted and mangled.

    Again, the sources were pretty much evenly balanced between male and female, no matter whether or not the interpretation was accurate or twisted.

    He gently convicted me of the underlying taint.

    Mea Culpa.

    I am so, so sorry.

    Then He led me to ACFJ… 🙂

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