“We must break through the glass ceiling.”
“Equal work for equal pay.”
“We need to have as many women filling these jobs as men.”
When I was growing up, these were the rallying cry of secular feminist groups across the nation. Sadly, today I hear these exact same phrases seeping into the Christian world as too many women are embracing a new wave of Christian feminism.
Much of it stems from the progressive Christianity movement and the many female writers within this movement who are true believers in the feminist movement. They have bought into it all: abandoning the Biblical structure for the family, freedom of sexual expression, abortion rights, LBGTQ rights, and the need to overthrow the traditional heterosexual, patriarchal society. Recently, I read that one progressive Christian author divorced her husband because she could no longer live with his Fundamentalist belief system. Not exactly a Biblical ground for divorce, but she’s witty and charming when she writes, so she has a platform. Still, she and those who believe like her are wrong. They are embracing a worldly philosophy that is against God, the Bible, and the family. As a follower of Christ, we should reject them as teachers.
Granted, most of the women I know have not embraced this radical feminist agenda in its entirety. They stand for things like traditional marriage and march under the pro-life banner. Yet, I’m concerned because I hear some of the feminist agenda seeping into conversations and teachings. Many sound like the phrases at the beginning of this article.
This deeply disturbs my spirit.
I’m worried that we are falling into the trap Paul warned about in Colossians 2:8:
“See to it that no one takes you captive through hollow and deceptive philosophy, which depends on human tradition and the elemental spiritual forces of this world rather than on Christ.”
Colossians 2:8 NIV
Ultimately, feminism is a worldly philosophy and agenda based on anti-biblical principles. As Christian women, we should reject it.
Does this mean I think women should be oppressed, squelched, or kept from using all of their God-given abilities and potential?
I am a single, ordained minister who believes that God can call any woman at any time for any job He chooses.
However, I’m worried that adopting the principles of feminism is causing us to concentrate on and fight a battle that Christ has already won for us.
“So in Christ Jesus you are all children of God through faith, for all of you who were baptized into Christ have clothed yourselves with Christ. There is neither Jew nor Gentile, neither slave nor free, nor is there male and female, for you are all one in Christ Jesus. If you belong to Christ, then you are Abraham’s seed, and heirs according to the promise.”
Galatians 3:26-29 NIV
This scripture ends the argument. Women can do whatever God calls them to do. Period.
While feminisms goal is to divide men and women, make women feel resentful for what they don’t have, and challenge us to fight for more, I believe it is time we lay worldly philosophies aside and just get busy doing what God has called us to do. We need to do it the way God wants it done.
That last line is essential.
You see, the ways of God are diametrically opposed to the ways of modern feminism.
For instance, while feminism speaks climbing the ladder and breaking the glass ceiling, the Bible calls men and women to serve in love. There is no ladder to climb, just a towel to wash feet and serve.
While feminism demands equal titles and equal pay, Jesus tells His followers not to worry about titles and to trust God to provide for their needs. (Matthew 23:8-12 and Luke 12:22) One of the most outstanding men in the New Testament, Paul, talks about ministering for free while making tents and learning to be content with whatever is provided. (1 Corinthians 9:15-18 and Philippians 4:11-12)
I disagree with the latest wave of Christian feminism because I believe it is a distraction from what really matters: all believers walking in their calling and wholeheartedly serving Jesus.
It undermines the teaching of Scriptures and creates attitudes that are un-Christlike. While it is not as radical as the feminism of progressive Christianity, it subtly leads us away from God’s perfect will for our lives.
It’s a philosophy of this world. As such, we should reject it.
As women, we need to accept that Christ already won the battle and gave us the freedom to walk in our calling.
If someone doesn’t like it, let God deal with them and change their hearts. You follow Jesus.
Don’t worry about all the things of this world that feminism wants to trap you into fighting for. These are temporary things that will pass away. Instead, seek first the kingdom of God and His righteousness, and all these things will be added to you. (Matthew 6:33)
We don’t need Christian feminism. We don’t need quotas or diversity. We need to double down, learn to live under God’s kingdom principles, and operate under His anointing.
As we do that, God will take care of the rest.
Adessa Holden is an ordained minister with the Assemblies of God specializing in Women's Ministry. Together with her brother, Jamie, they manage 4One Ministries and travel the East Coast speaking, holding conferences, and producing Men's and Women's resources that provide practical Biblical teaching for everyday life.
When asked about herself, she'll tell you "I'm a women's minister, a sister, and a daughter. I love to laugh and spend time with people. My favorite things are chocolate, the ocean, sandals and white capris, anything purple, summertime and riding in the car listening to music. It is my absolute honor and privilege to serve Jesus and women through this ministry.