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Thursday, October 14, 2010

Duties Are Ours: Part 2

To Give Examples and Explication of These Principles from Duties Are Ours: Part 1 from OT Biblical Texts

And the LORD God took the man, and put him into the garden of Eden to dress it and to keep it...And the LORD God said, It is not good that the man should be alone; I will make him an help meet for him. And out of the ground the LORD God formed every beast of the field, and every fowl of the air; and brought them unto Adam to see what he would call them: and whatsoever Adam called every living creature, that was the name thereof. And Adam gave names to all cattle, and to the fowl of the air, and to every beast of the field; but for Adam there was not found an help meet for him. And the LORD God caused a deep sleep to fall upon Adam, and he slept: and he took one of his ribs, and closed up the flesh instead thereof; and the rib, which the LORD God had taken from man, made he a woman, and brought her unto the man. And Adam said, This is now bone of my bones, and flesh of my flesh: she shall be called Woman, because she was taken out of Man. Therefore shall a man leave his father and his mother, and shall cleave unto his wife: and they shall be one flesh. (Gen. 2:15,18-24)
This passage shows the beautiful creation order of man given work in the world, to cultivate it, to bring order and productivity in the world. His wife is given to him, created from his own flesh, so intimate and at one with him, his perfect complement, his helper created and gifted by God to be suitable for him.

Unto the woman he said, I will greatly multiply thy sorrow and thy conception; in sorrow thou shalt bring forth children; and thy desire shall be to thy husband, and he shall rule over thee. And unto Adam he said, Because thou hast hearkened unto the voice of thy wife, and hast eaten of the tree, of which I commanded thee, saying, Thou shalt not eat of it: cursed is the ground for thy sake; in sorrow shalt thou eat of it all the days of thy life; Thorns also and thistles shall it bring forth to thee; and thou shalt eat the herb of the field; In the sweat of thy face shalt thou eat bread, till thou return unto the ground; for out of it wast thou taken: for dust thou art, and unto dust shalt thou return. And Adam called his wife's name Eve; because she was the mother of all living. (Gen. 3:16-20)
This passage shows that God has said that the woman's sin-struggle will be with usurping her husband, but she must submit to his rule, instead. In addition, this passage shows the division of labor between the husband and wife. Man labors in the field (the world), and woman labors in childbearing and home-making. Adam names her because is his, was made for him; and the name he chooses for her has to do with her "career," her wifehood and motherhood. This is why a married woman takes her husband's name; she is his family now; she is "on his team." Likewise, with the second Adam, Jesus Christ, His people proudly bear His name, and are called Christians.

And Cain knew his wife; and she conceived, and bare Enoch: and he builded a city, and called the name of the city, after the name of his son, Enoch. And unto Enoch was born Irad: and Irad begat Mehujael: and Mehujael begat Methusael: and Methusael begat Lamech. And Lamech took unto him two wives: the name of the one was Adah, and the name of the other Zillah. And Adah bare Jabal: he was the father of such as dwell in tents, and of such as have cattle. And his brother's name was Jubal: he was the father of all such as handle the harp and organ. And Zillah, she also bare Tubalcain, an instructer of every artificer in brass and iron: and the sister of Tubalcain was Naamah. (Gen. 4:17-22)
This passage shows the work of the world, of dominion (though by sinful men), passed on from father to son. The wife's work is in being a wife and bearing children. The sister of Tubalcain, Naamah, is named, but the passage does not go on to talk about her "career." She is a blessing in a way different from sons; she is a daughter.

"And I will fetch a morsel of bread, and comfort ye your hearts; after that ye shall pass on: for therefore are ye come to your servant." And they said, "So do, as thou hast said." And Abraham hastened into the tent unto Sarah, and said, "Make ready quickly three measures of fine meal, knead it, and make cakes upon the hearth." And Abraham ran unto the herd, and fetcht a calf tender and good, and gave it unto a young man; and he hasted to dress it. And he took butter, and milk, and the calf which he had dressed, and set it before them; and he stood by them under the tree, and they did eat. And they said unto him, "Where is Sarah thy wife?" And he said, "Behold, in the tent." (Gen. 18:5-9)
Abraham needed his wife, who was home, to assist him with hospitality and providing for guests.

If he take him another wife; her food, her raiment, and her duty of marriage, shall he not diminish. (Ex. 21:10)
Even when a man takes another wife (which other passages show he shouldn't do), he may not abandon her; he must still provide her with food, raiment and "her duty of marriage."

The woman shall not wear that which pertaineth unto a man, neither shall a man put on a woman's garment: for all that do so are abomination unto the LORD thy God. (Deut. 22:5)
Here we see that there is a difference between a man and a woman in how they are to dress themselves. Their outer conduct of dressing themselves is not to be the same. A person's dress is appropriate to the work they do, their career. There is a separation of dress because there is a separation of labor and function. A soldier, an auto mechanic, a construction worker, a doctor, or a businessman wears his uniform. A woman wears that which builds up others spiritually, is comfortable for work around the home and can be easily washed, is feminine, modest; her career is a career in the home. More about a woman's career in the home, her manner and feminine orientation, and dress in Proverbs 31 below and 1 Peter 3.

When a man hath taken a new wife, he shall not go out to war, neither shall he be charged with any business: but he shall be free at home one year, and shall cheer up his wife which he hath taken. (Deut. 24:5)
It is the man who is charged with war and business, not his wife. The new husband is to stay at home (where his wife is) and make her happy.

And he said, This will be the manner of the king that shall reign over you: He will take your sons, and appoint them for himself, for his chariots, and to be his horsemen; and some shall run before his chariots. And he will appoint him captains over thousands, and captains over fifties; and will set them to ear his ground, and to reap his harvest, and to make his instruments of war, and instruments of his chariots. And he will take your daughters to be confectionaries, and to be cooks, and to be bakers. And he will take your fields, and your vineyards, and your oliveyards, even the best of them, and give them to his servants. And he will take the tenth of your seed, and of your vineyards, and give to his officers, and to his servants. And he will take your menservants, and your maidservants, and your goodliest young men, and your asses, and put them to his work. He will take the tenth of your sheep: and ye shall be his servants. (1 Sam. 8:11-17)
This passage shows that desiring to "be like everyone else" and be ruled over by men, rather than God, will result in God's judgment in the form of a tyrannical civil government that will take your children and cause even your daughters to work in state-approved "careers" to fill its coffers, and tyrannically take not only your family's productivity, but 10% of what you do manage to produce, and you'll end up serving this "civil servant." Sounds eerily familiar, doesn't it? It's a temporal judgment on His people who disobey Him and choose to be the tail rather than the head (Deuteronomy 28:36-48).

And the king went forth, and all his household after him. And the king left ten women, which were concubines, to keep the house. (2 Sam. 15:16)
Even if there are ten women at home keeping house, they are needed there! ;-)

Nehemiah Chapter 3
This chapter shows godly men building the city, repairing the ruins, fathers and sons working together, to bring order and God's dominion to that which was laid waste, neglected, and made desolate. This passage mentions that one man (the son of Halohesh) has his daughters helping him. He may not have had any sons, but it's clear that the daughters are not independent of their father; they are helping him.

And I looked, and rose up, and said unto the nobles, and to the rulers, and to the rest of the people, Be not ye afraid of them: remember the LORD, which is great and terrible, and fight for your brethren, your sons, and your daughters, your wives, and your houses. (Neh. 4:14)
Here again, we see a "man's world," where men strive in the world for their brothers, their children, their wives, and their homes/property, by the grace of God and for His glory. It doesn't say, "Fight for your husbands and children and careers, ladies!"

He maketh the barren woman to keep house, and to be a joyful mother of children. Praise ye the LORD. (Psalm 113:9)
This shows that a woman's joyful blessing from God is to be a keeper of the home and a mother. This is a temporal blessing from God, for which He should be praised. Being a wife, mother and homemaker is not something to be disdained; it is something for a woman to deeply desire and to anticipate with joy.

Whoso findeth a wife findeth a good thing, and obtaineth favour of the LORD. (Proverbs 18:22)
Here we learn that a husband is to search for a godly wife; she is a good gift from God, and such a husband will be blessed (obtain favor of the LORD).

Blessed is every one that feareth the LORD; that walketh in his ways. For thou shalt eat the labour of thine hands: happy shalt thou be, and it shall be well with thee. Thy wife shall be as a fruitful vine by the sides of thine house: thy children like olive plants round about thy table. Behold, that thus shall the man be blessed that feareth the LORD. (Psalm 128:1-4)
More blessings promised to those who fear the LORD and walk in His ways! His house and his table are blessed by God. His wife is fruitful with children, and his children are like young plants to be planted, and as they mature, bearing their own fruitfulness, their lives will extend their father and mother's faith and teachings of God's ways beyond the extent of his limited, mortal life. A man's productivity in this life affects eternity and has meaning beyond his own temporal existence. A father has no greater joy than to hear this his children walk in truth (3 John 1:4). How can he have this without a godly wife who also fears God and walks in His ways?

Every wise woman buildeth her house: but the foolish plucketh it down with her hands.(Prov. 14:1)
This proverb teaches that the wise woman builds her house. Does this mean that she has chosen to devote her life to contracting to construct houses? Is her career carpentry or log-house building? No, it is saying that the career of a wise woman is her home and family. She is to edify her home with godliness and all that the book of Proverbs and the rest of Scriptures says to do. This proverb also says a foolish woman plucks down her house with her own hands. She is off in her independent career, instead of building up her husband and being a helper to him. She leaves her children in daycare or schools to do whatever she foolishly believes is more important work, will earn more money. But our riches are not in chasing money, but from God by Christ (Phil. 4:19). The foolish woman would rather break up her home and divorce her husband for the sake of independence and money and false security, then give her life and love and time and labor to building up her husband, children and home.

Proverbs 31:10-31
This famous passage depicts the godly wife who fears God, she is productive and works "willingly" in her home. She is charitable and gives to the needy, She makes clothes, and sells them to the merchants. She builds up her husband (he is known in the gates and sits among the elders of the land), and brings honor and respect to him with her diligence to make the most of what they have and extend his influence. She is kind, strong, wise, and honoring. She looks well to the way of her household, and does not neglect her labors there. She is a mother; and her children call her blessed, her husband praises her, and even her own works are known in the gates and praised. She doesn't chase praise and honor out in the workplace in an independent career. She doesn't impress her children by fighting for her "rights" to open a dress shop or by being an astute real estate agent; it comes about by her godly teaching and edifying of her family and her diligent work in her home, as she honors others as more important than herself. Her priceless value is in her virtue.

Thou shalt no more be termed Forsaken; neither shall thy land any more be termed Desolate: but thou shalt be called Hephzibah, and thy land Beulah: for the LORD delighteth in thee, and thy land shall be married. For as a young man marrieth a virgin, so shall thy sons marry thee: and as the bridegroom rejoiceth over the bride, so shall thy God rejoice over thee. (Is. 62:4-5)
Marriage for a woman is a blessing; her bridegroom will rejoice over her. It's the opposite of being forsaken and desolate. Marriage for a woman is a picture of the security (temporal and eternal), which God gives His people, those who trust in Him.

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