Gender Equality and the Gospel Part 1
Gender Equality and the Gospel Part 1
I’m super excited because, in this blog post, we’re going to be talking about a book that my friend, Kelly Symone, wrote called Crowned: Gender Equality and The Gospel. And I got to tell you, this book is so good! It talks about a lot of controversial topics that we don’t talk about in church so I hope that you enjoy!
The Controversy with Gender Equality and the Gospel
Ashley: Why is this so controversial? Go ahead and let the cat out the bag.
Kelly: There’s so many different perspectives on this topic, but there’s this idea that there is a social and spiritual hierarchy that men are on top of (with some being more compassionate in their approach.) Some people just really believe that men do a better job at leading or that they are supposed to run everything. And that idea is so pervasive. It’s really an ancient idea.
Ashley: I think that I’ve been on the receiving side of those types of mindsets my entire life. And I think that it’s something that people don’t really know is happening a lot of times because it’s so embedded in the culture or often times what’s being taught sometimes from the pulpit. Some people don’t even recognize that it’s not always congruent with the Bible or the voice of God. Can you speak more about that?
Kelly: So the idea that there is a difference in the value or the worth of human beings based on gender is frankly a demonic idea. It combats what Jesus accomplished on the cross because He literally died and then rose again so that we believers could be welcomed back into the family of God at our original status, which we find in the book of Genesis and this is the first chapter of my book.
I probably spent six months studying the first three chapters of Genesis to get a deep revelation of what was exactly happening because when you go back to Eden, you find Adam and Eve living as a son and daughter of God and that’s how we were originally designed.
Societal Roles of Women Incongruent with God’s Word
Ashley: So give me something that we hear or see a lot in society and in the church about the role of women or the identity of women that is not congruent with what God is telling us?
Kelly: I think you could look at your average women’s ministry and the programs that usually go along with it and even the marketing. Women’s ministries don’t always have a lot to do with being a woman. A lot of times, it has to do with being a wife, preparing to be a wife, or being a mom. And the reason why that has something to do with gender equality is because the first thing about being a woman is learning how to just be yourself.
There’s nothing wrong with these roles. It’s just not where we should start. It’s one of those things that’s embedded in our society when we think about women. We think about them in the context of, “Is she married or does she have kids?” But when you think about men, we don’t think that. We think, “Who are you? What do you do?”
And when you are really living your life as a daughter of God, you start at the beginning, not in the roles. For example, if God is saying that I am made in His image and likeness, then that’s my foundation.
It’s not in am I married or am I not married? It’s not, do I wear a size 6 or a size 16? It’s not do I like pink and wear high heels? That doesn’t make me more of a woman than somebody who likes wearing Jordans lol.
It’s literally saying, God made me a woman. He made me in His image and likeness, so what does that mean? That’s the big question. To be honest, you’ll spend the rest of your life living it and answering it, but that’s part of the journey of being a son or a daughter of God. We start with asking God, What did you have in mind when you created me? What solution am I providing? What question am I the answer to?
Ashley: Right and that goes back to fulfilling your purpose in the earth. What you’re saying is so important and it’s so rich. No matter what you do, how much money you make, or what roles you play, it goes back to who you are in Christ!
And if you are not able to answer those questions or if you’re answering them through your husband’s career, through your family, or whatever else, you’re going to always have this void. And you’ll lack the power to have whatever it is that you are trying to obtain in Christ. Because power comes from your authority and your authority is connected to identity!
I also love how you start the beginning of the book. I’m just going to read a little bit here.
It says, “We are in a time when God is restoring the name, the beauty and the wealth of His daughters. These women will not be nameless, faceless, or forgotten. They have been recorded and remembered. Yes, God’s daughters have their own names and their own identities. They are distinguished and not dependent upon the names of any men for significance or fame. No, God has identified His daughters and is exposing them through their beauty. It will not be a secret and it cannot be hidden.”
What do you mean by God is exposing women through their beauty?
God Exposing Women Through Their Beauty
Kelly: Our idea of beauty when it comes to women usually focuses on physical appearance. But beauty in all of its forms whether you’re talking about someone’s physical appearance or you’re talking about art or music is really about a harmonious arrangement.
And what God does is expose all of who a woman is – not just what we look like or how well we perform in certain roles, but the beauty of being made in the image and likeness of God as a woman because it is different than being a man.
When this happens, your beauty isn’t obscured because you don’t try to shapeshift and fit into all these different boxes and roles. You just be who God called you to be. I mean there are a lot of women who don’t even know to ask. They don’t ask themselves, Is this what I’m supposed to do because this is who I really am or am I doing this because somebody created this box for me?
There’s some stuff that we care about that God doesn’t care about. For example, God doesn’t care if we wear gym shoes or not lol. He really doesn’t care if we have a Chanel pen or if our bundles are straight lol.
And to be honest, men need to ask these questions too. That’s why this book really isn’t about women’s rights perse. It’s about being human and understanding what being human really means. Instead of defining ourselves through “a man does this and a woman does this,” we find our identity in being made in the image and likeness of God.
Isn’t this conversation amazing so far? Be sure to check out Part 2 coming soon! In the meantime, tell me in the comments your biggest takeaway. If you haven’t already, be sure to check out Kelly’s book, Crowned: Gender Equality and the Gospel, here.