Why God Made Women (Addressing wrong ideas about female creation)

Weekend Devotion: God Created Women in His Image to Be a Source of Strength & Power Where Men Are Weak. Her Divine Design Was Not Maid, Slave, Blindly Obeying Man’s Desire, Nor Lust. Ezer Kegnedo is Poorly Translated As Helper.

This weekend speaking on ending modern day slavery. 80% of the exploited are women; 50% under the age of 16. Part of the issue is women are viewed as objects to serve the pleasure whims of men, instead of people to be loved.

Eve was NOT created to be Adam’s play toy or slave. Ezer Kegnedo which is poorly translated into English as helper, means an equal but opposite complement that is strong, provides power, where the other is weak.

God did not tell Eve, “It is your job to please this man and serve him. Be sure to obey him and follow him.” He told both Adam and Eve both to have dominion on earth (see Genesis 1). Both were created in the image of God.

The fall of mankind produces a fracture in the male female relationship. God did NOT say, “I want your husband to Lord over you.” He said, “Because of your choice (eating the fruit), your desire is going to be to please your husband (be a people pleaser essentially), and because of your choice he will seek to lord over you.” It was NEVER God’s design for men to dominate women nor treat them like sex objects or slaves or servants.

Jesus stated the greatest among you will be your servant, when the disciples were fighting over who would be the greatest (Matthew 23:11). The Son of Man did not come to be served, but to serve (Matthew 20:28).

God created relationships to flow from love! Love does not seek someone to meet it’s selfish whims. Love seeks to serve. Paul told husbands to love their wives the way Christ loves the church. Love comes to give, serve, invest, empower, help, celebrate….love is NOT a consumer that uses people like Kleenex. What is so radical about Ephesians is people ignore Ephesians 5:21 which says “Submit (be willing to yield to what honors God) to one another out of reverence for God,” and “Husbands love your wives the way Christ loves loves the church (Ephesians 5:25).

The focus is wives submit to your husbands which in study I found is not in the orginal text as written. Wives submit was added based on what translators felt would fit. It was submit to one another, likewise for wives. Wives were already forced into submission in the culture.

Paul emphasized husbands treating their wives the way Jesus loves the church. Jesus makes the church a coheir, serves the church, prepares a place for her, adds value, treats her as a part of Him, nourishes the church, takes care of the church. This was RADICAL because men in the culture treated their wives like property and walking reproductive organs. The guidance of Paul for men was radical. Women were not treated as coheirs the way Jesus treats the church. Yet thousands of years later you still see hyper focus on women be submissive and little on men submitting (Ephesians 5:21) and loving the way Jesus loves (Ephesians 5:25, John 13:34-35, 1 John 4:8). Paul said without love we are just making noise and we are nothing (1 Corinthians 13).

I truly believe one of the ways we can end some of the horrible crimes against women is to stop teaching that women are just supposed to submit to the desires of men. Women are not children created to aimlessly follow men. Eve was created because it was not good for Adam to be alone. Adam had a need. Adam had a problem. God provided someone who was created to be a source of power and strength where he was weak. They were to complement each other.

God even refers to Himself as an Ezer to mankind. He provides strength where we are weak.

When women are viewed as people not walking reproductive organs created for man’s pleasure, I think things will radically shift.

When lust is addressed as anti God and sin, and we help people get delivered, I think things will radically shift.

When love enters the hearts of people, and people are seen as someone to love not an object to use-things will shift.

When the adult film industry loses clients (it fuels human trafficking), things will shift.

When young girls are taught they are not pleasure pods created to please men, but created to be loved as a person not a service-things will shift.

When “boys will be boys” is removed from our vocabulary as excuses for poor behavior, things will shift.

When we address the things God spoke about relationships instead of hyper focusing on women submit, things will change. God created women to be a source of strength and that had nothing to do with her ability to please him physically.

Women were created different from men on purpose! Women have the ability to use both sides of their brains in ways men tend to be single focused/minded. Each gender is gifted and adds value to the other. The brain of a woman in complex and different. It is not inferior.

My prayer is we (culture) get to know the heart and love of God. Love fulfills the law because love does no harm to it’s neighbor (Romans 13:10)! Love does not sell people or use them for their body or forced labor. Love does not treat people like servants. Jesus said, “I no longer call you servants; I call you friends (John 15:15).”

Love comes to serve. Love is pure. Love comes to honor God.

Having the desire for physical intimacy is not sin; desiring to use people, get those needs met outside God’s design, seeking to be pleased instead of love…that is selfish and sinful.

People were created by love (God), to be loved, then to love. Without love, it’s not God. God is love (1 John 4:8). Those who do not love, do not know God.

Lust is not love. It is selfish and greedy. It comes to be served, not serve. It comes to consume, not give. It comes with demands, not a heart to honor. Jesus came and took the lowest place. He did not boss the disciples around, “Serve Me peasants. I am the King. I am the Lord over you.” Nope. He washed feet. He gave the disciples an invitation into relationship and led them by love. Leader=servant of others in the eyes of God. The leader is the one who sacrificially loves. Jesus laid His life down for the church. Jesus did not boss people around. He loved them.

May we see people the way God does. Women were created in the image of God (Genesis 1:27). I won’t even touch on how 50% of the victims of human trafficking are under 16 years old. Some are as young as 3 or 4 years old. Children are being sold for forced labor or illicit sexual acts. It is beyond disturbing. Men were not created for lust. Men were created to love like God. Love does NOT harm children.

Here are some organizations you can support who are addressing human trafficking.

International Justice Mission (ijm.org)

Extreme Love (extremelove.com)

A21 (A21.org)

And there are so many more!

I will be speaking this Sunday at 10:30am on Ending Modern Day Slavery.

You may watch the live stream from Vineyard Christian Church Live Stream.

May you and I be the change we wish to see in the world!

Love,

Erin Lamb

https://www.empowered-free.com

Facebook.com/erinlambauthor

Leadership, Godly Submission, and Jesus

Morning Devotion: Leader means servant in God’s eyes, not dictator or boss. Dissecting the leadership model of Jesus and wrong teachings on submission. Submit=Be willing to yield to what honors God (possess humility), not obey or blindly obey people.

I am sometimes confused when people state they are the leader when their function is simply being served and telling others what to do. They are exalted and they have a hierarchy system so their needs, desires, wishes are served or met. Or they define great leadership by the number of people following them; Hitler had lots of followers under his demonic leadership it did not mean God thought he was a great leader.

I have had men tell me and women too that the husband is the leader in the family yet the wife does 80-90% of the serving, helping, loving, getting low in humility to empower her family. It is not the model Jesus laid out nor lived of leadership.

The one laying their life down, sacrificially loving, and serving is imitating Jesus and leading.

The disciples at one point became self important and argued over who would be the greatest among them. The desire to be great in the eyes of man is of the carnal nature (flesh).

Pride does not flow from God, it flows from Satan. Pride, self importance, was the principle sin of Lucifer. He wanted to be worshipped and exalted above God. Lucifer wanted to be served, not serve.

This was the response of Jesus to the arguing disciples:

Jesus, knowing their thoughts, called them to his side and said, “Kings and those with great authority in this world rule oppressively over their subjects, like tyrants. But this is not your calling. You will lead by a completely different model. The greatest one among you will live as the one who is called to serve others, because the greatest honor and authority is reserved for the one with the heart of a servant. For even the Son of Man did not come expecting to be served by everyone, but to serve everyone, and to give his life in exchange for the salvation of many,”~Matthew 20:25-28.

Jesus came with an upside down model of leadership. He came and served. He came and washed feet. He came and empowered others. He came and died to free others. He came and got low so we could be seated in heavenly places with Him, joint heirs and copartners. The value Jesus placed and places on humanity is high.

Jesus was and is perfect-He is the model for all things Christian. He selected disciples who were not yet enlightened. He walked with them, talked with them, served them, and empowered them to do what they saw Him doing. Great leadership is empowering others to reach their highest potential. Jesus did not show up and say, “Now look here peasants, God created you for Me so let’s get this straight, when I say jump, you say how high. These are my demands, meet them daily or else.”

Jesus had no pride, ego, or what they call male ego. Knowing He was worthy of worship, He got low and served others.

Phillipians tells us the following about following the example of Jesus:

Be free from pride-filled opinions, for they will only harm your cherished unity. Don’t allow self-promotion to hide in your hearts, but in authentic humility put others first and view others as more important than yourselves. Abandon every display of selfishness. Possess a greater concern for what matters to others instead of your own interests. And consider the example that Jesus, the Anointed One, has set before us. Let his mindset become your motivation.

The Example of Jesus Christ

He existed in the form of God, yet he gave no thought to seizing equality with God as his supreme prize. Instead he emptied himself of his outward glory by reducing himself to the form of a lowly servant. He became human! He humbled himself and became vulnerable, choosing to be revealed as a man and was obedient. He was a perfect example, even in his death—a criminal’s death by crucifixion!~Phillipians 2:3-8.

Love is destroyed by pride. Love and pride cannot occupy the same spaces. One will dominate and overpower the other. God commissions and empowers us to love. So when someone says, “I am called to lead you,” if they are following Jesus this means, “I am called to serve you, not seek to be served by you.”

I have met numerous “leaders” and men in my day who told me they were called to lead me. Yet what that meant was they felt empowered to tell me what to do and wanted to be served. This is NOT godly leadership at all, it’s worldly leadership.

I have had single men tell me all the ways I could benefit their lives because to them a wife is servant to meet their needs. They could have cared less about loving me, treating me the way Jesus would. My dreams, calling from God, desires were completely insignificant. They saw someone unmarried and pretty (their words not mine) they wanted to purchase (flash their money, paycheck at) to serve them.

Women are not objects or slaves to be purchased to serve the whims of men then be replaced when she fails to meet a need, cheated on when she cannot meet his pleasures, or used for her body. God did NOT create a system of selfishness nor objectification. God created a family that is supposed to be fueled by love. God says, “Husbands forsake all others and cleave to your one wife. Love her the way Jesus loves the church. He was willing to die for the church. Jesus got low and served. Jesus empowers and leads by love and example. Jesus walks in purity not lust. Jesus cares about every single detail…follow My Son Jesus. Be an imitator of Him.”

The verse that says wives be subject to your husbands as unto the Lord in the original text means be wholly devoted in love-this means she is monogymous and not enganged with other lovers, she has eyes for her husband, single vision. It does NOT mean he becomes her god and she must obey him.

Husband is not the same as God. If it were so, then God is the author of confusion because He plainly says, “You shall have no other god besides me,” and “You are a slave to whomever you obey.” If the texts about husbands and wives meant the husband has the final authority, if he told his wife to betray God she would have to obey her spouse over God. No! She will be held accountable to God for obeying God not man. God is the final authority.

Example:

In inner healing class we had a lady who’s husband was molesting his granddaughter. The wife was submitting to his perverted leadership and holding a pillow over the child’s head during the violation. Was she honoring her husband by submitting to his perversion? Was she a good wife? No! She was a bad wife. She will spend a long time in jail like him for harming this child. The lady who was molested over and over was a testimony of healing in the class, her grandparents were not in the class.

Part of intimate relationship is revealing the righteousness of God to those connected to us. Her role as his wife and sister in Christ was to point her husband to righteousness. We do not yield to what is ungodly. No no no no! Ephesians 5:21 tells all followers of Jesus to be willing to yield (submit, possess humility) in reverence for the Lord. Being willing to yield is NOT the same word as obey.

Culture focuses on the wife submitting while ignoring the verse before it that says men and women, all believers submit to each other and choose humility. Culture also ignores the verses that tell husbands to go even further than that to love their wives the way Jesus loves the church (die to selfishness, pride, ego, immorality). Point highlighted again, we are NOT to yield to what is ungodly and violates our relationship with God. Nor are we puppets to be led on strings by whims of others.

Those led by the Spirit of God are the children of God. If your boss at work, pastor, mentor, parent, spouse or anyone claiming authority over you tells you to do something wicked, say no. That is not rebellion, it is honoring God. Godly leaders point to what honors the Lord and people. God will not lead anyone into sin, nor is God a slave driver who does not care about the needs, desires, or dreams of those He leads.

May we lead like Jesus which is counter cultural to this world. The greatest in the Kingdom of God has a heart of a servant, it is one who loves and looks out for the best interests of others.

Papa God help us to see leadership through the lenses of Jesus. You gave us a perfect model in your Son. Jesus was not a bully, dictator, abuser, nor did He use His status to Lord over people. He got low and served. He took the lowest place and you exalted Him to the highest place. Jesus is perfect theology. Jesus is the perfect spouse model. Jesus is the perfect leader; He seeks to look out for the best interests of those connected to Him. Jesus perfectly loves. Jesus does not use people He partners with them. Jesus, beautiful Jesus. May we abide in Jesus and lead like Jesus. In Your powerful name, amen.

Love in Christ,

Erin Lamb

Image Bearers (Intimacy with God Part III)

IMG_2577.JPG

…you are no longer foreigners and strangers, but fellow citizens with God’s people and also members of his household, built on the foundation of the apostles and prophets, with Christ Jesus himself as the chief cornerstone. In him the whole building is joined together and rises to become a holy temple in the Lord. And in him you too are being built together to become a dwelling in which God lives by his Spirit,~Ephesians 2:19-22.

God invites us into relationship with Him. It is a covenant relationship. His connection with us is Spirit to spirit. He imparts Himself to us in the Person of the Holy Spirit. It’s not simply a visitation with God on Sunday mornings. It’s intended to be a habitation.

What is a habitation? (Source Dictionary.com)

1. The act of inhabiting or the state of being inhabited.
2. A natural environment or locality.
3. A residence.

God abides in born again believers. The purpose of habitation is not simply to get us into heaven. It’s so we are transformed into the image of His Son, Jesus. The Holy Spirit resides in us and continually points to truth, righteousness, and reveals Jesus. Day by day, moment by moment, He’s revealing the Son and we (if we are submitted to God) are being transformed into His likeness. This is a powerful work of the Holy Spirit. We cannot strive to be like God. Our attempts will fail.

Our outward expressions will always manifest our internal reality. Just as an apple tree continues to produce apples. You can chop off the fruit, but it will continue to produce fruit.

We are called to have the fruit of God’s Spirit and be His image bearers in the earth. It brings Him glory when we act like Him, that is the truest form of who we are. Genesis 1 states in His image God created them. We were created by Him, in His image, to represent Him.

How do we become like Jesus?

1. It starts with relationship (see previous post Intimacy with God Part II). If you’re not saved, you will not become like Jesus because the Holy Spirit is not in you. Human efforts are futile.

2. We abide.

I will talk more about abiding in the next post.

Jesus stated in John 15:5, “I am the Vine and you are the branches. Those who remain in Me will bear much fruit. Apart from Me, you can do nothing.”

3. We submit.

Submission sounds horrible when we are self willed and do not understand how much God loves us.

Submission is beautiful when you realize the One you are saying yes to has your best interests at heart. God wants the best for us. So when He says, “Don’t go there. Don’t do this. This is a bad idea. You should go this way,” it’s because He can see all things and knows that the penalty for doing things sinful is death.

We do not become like Jesus by being rebellious, stubborn, disobedient, and living life our own way.

Jesus was obedient even to the cross. What if He decided He was not going to do the Father’s will? You and I would be in a bad place as He’s the atoning sacrifice for our sins.

Lastly, God didn’t just save us so we could ride off into the sunset just as broken and messed up as He found us. He saved us out of love. He restores broken things and makes them brand new. He loves us as we are, yet out of that great love-never intends to leave us the way He found us. No parent would want their adult child wearing diapers. He loves us as is, yet the Holy Spirit works in us to grow us up in love, truth, maturity, and wisdom.

Our response to that great love is submission. We are transformed into our true identity.

As we become like Him in character, we become the greatest blessing to the world. We are salt and light. We reflect Him and bring His beautiful fragrance to the world. We will not impact the world by acting like the world. Our lives are meant to be beacons of light!

We reflect the nature, character, and goodness of God. We represent Him and heaven.

I want to stay connected to God and submitted to Him so when people encounter me, they encounter Him. I desire the pure essence of Jesus to be manifest in my life, for His glory.

Will you join me on this quest to know Him intimately?

I hope so!

Praying you are overwhelmed by His goodness, grace, love, and mercy! You are deeply loved.

Love,

Erin Lamb