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Archive for the ‘GWTW Lesson 7’ Category

( see also In those days, it was NOT expected that a wife would follow her husband)

56. Dr. A. C. Dixon, in an article in the London Christian (Nov. 16, 1911) says: “Turn to this civilization which God Himself founded, and you will hear Him say: ‘A man shall leave his father and his mother, and shall cleave unto his wife; and they shall be one flesh.’ Woman is given the pre-eminence. It is not the woman leaving the father and the mother, and cleaving unto her husband; but it is the man leaving his mother and father, and cleaving unto his wife.” At one point we disagree with Dr. Dixon. Civilization founded on this marriage law of God did not make the wife her husband’s superior; but it prevented her becoming his subordinate. ….

63. We have got so far away from God’s law, that today, in British law, the mother is not a parent. …. The English Church is severe against divorce. Yet, read the Lord’s ruling as to divorce, in Matthew 19, and we discover that the conclusion, “Therefore what God hath joined together, let not man put asunder,” rests upon the premises, “A man shall leave his father and mother, and shall cleave to his wife, and they twain shall become [R. V.] one flesh.” The Church will never effectually enforce the conclusion of that statute, while it defies the premises upon which it rests.

156… We have pointed out some of the social wrongs growing out of this violation of God’s marriage law.

157. Christ said: “What God hath joined, let not man put asunder.” Now we inquire, “What did God join, when He gave that marriage law which Christ repeats? First and foremost, he joined a man to his wife’s kindred, by the words, “For this cause shall a man leave father and mother and cleave to his wife.” In the second place, God joined the husband to his wife, as indicated by the words,—“and they shall become one flesh.” The R.V.is correct here, in translating, “shall become,” instead of “shall be.” Both the Hebrew of the O. T., and the Greek of the N. T. say “become,” not “be.”

( see also In those days, it was NOT expected that a wife would follow her husband)

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56. Dr. A. C. Dixon, in an article in the London Christian (Nov. 16, 1911) says: “Turn to this civilization which God Himself founded, and you will hear Him say: ‘A man shall leave his father and his mother, and shall cleave unto his wife; and they shall be one flesh.’ Woman is given the pre-eminence. It is not the woman leaving the father and the mother, and cleaving unto her husband; but it is the man leaving his mother and father, and cleaving unto his wife.” At one point we disagree with Dr. Dixon. Civilization founded on this marriage law of God did not make the wife her husband’s superior; but it prevented her becoming his subordinate. In this connection the story of Jacob and his wives, Leah and Rachel, is instructive. When he wishes to leave his father-in-law, he humbly asks his wives to accompany him. And they do not say: “It is our duty to follow our husband,” but, “We are warranted in going for two reasons: Our father has given us no inheritance; and he has kept for himself Jacob’s wages, and they should have been paid over to us, and our children” (Genesis 31:14-16). It is evident, from this, that men did not sell their daughters in marriage, where these women lived, nor did wives feel bound, by marriage, to follow their husbands to the ends of the earth. Scholars of note tell us that Abraham said to Abimelech, Genesis 20:13, concerning Sarah, “Then God caused her to wander with me,” not simply, “when God caused me to wander.” The difference in the meaning is this: It was not expected, in those days, that a wife would follow her husband in his wanderings, but quite the contrary. God wished Sarah and Abraham both to come out of idolatrous surroundings; therefore He gives a revelation of His will to Sarah, lest she should follow the usual custom and remain with her kin.

 


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55. We may ask, what brought about this change from female to male kinship. Modern evolutionists who will not admit a Divine revelation say that, first of all universal promiscuity prevailed; and as no man knew his own children, in consequence, therefore, female-kinship alone was recognized. But the foremost evolutionists, Darwin and Spencer, say that such promiscuity never prevailed; and that is very strong evidence against the theory, for they were the chief evolutionists. And besides, the Bible reveals the truth to us, and we need not stay to consider the evolutionists’ theory. God’s marriage law established female kinship, in the beginning; and why should such a hateful character as Lamech ever have been delineated in the Bible, excepting to record the violation of this marriage law, and the beginning of polygamy? A little further on, in the opening verses of the 6th chapter of Genesis, we read of the wholesale appropriation of women: “and the earth was filled with violence,” the record says. Lamech’s son “whetted cutting instruments,” as we read, in chapter four; and the first use of weapons of warfare was for the capture of women. As these captive wives were torn from their kindred, they became identified with their husband’s kin, as well as their children; and so male kinship came to pass. The flood did not exterminate the habit of capturing women, for we read, in judges, of Deborah waging war with Sisera, for his crimes against women; and Sisera’s mother is represented as watching for her son’s return with the spoils of war,—”to every warrior a damsel or two.”


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52….God’s marriage law was obeyed in the earliest ages of humanity….


54. Three leading features are characteristic of this early civilization: (1) The parents of a wife, together with her own kin, remain her “natural protectors” throughout life: (2) the household property is held by the women; (3) kinship is reckoned through the women, not the men, because when men marry they are detached from their kin; the children are known by the mother’s family name. This form of civilization is often called by the name, “female kinship,” because the 3rd point mentioned is the cause of all the rest. For instance, McLennan, in speaking of the decline in dignity of Grecian women, says: “We see that no causes could have produced it, so long as relationships through women preserved their old importance. On the other hand, we can discern a sufficient cause for degeneration in the gradually increasing preponderance of male kinship, and in the changes in the marriage system which made that preponderance.”

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50. God meant that human marriage should be a type of Christ’s union with the Church, or “New Jerusalem,” His bride. Christ laid aside all His glory with His Father and came to this earth to unite Himself to us. But marriage was not meant merely to typify Christ’s first coming, but to include the thought of His second coming as well; only in both these events does the type fully represent the antitype. Every Christian marriage should celebrate these two events. The husband’s renunciation of ties of kinship should offset the wife’s renunciation of self-love by taking up the risks of childbearing and child rearing. This is what Paul teaches, in Ephesians 5:31, 32, where he quotes the obligation that the husband should forsake his kindred for his wife, and adds, “I speak concerning Christ and the Church.” Adam and Eve were created at the same time, and were together, and then they were separated during a “deep sleep,” which came upon Adam. So Christ was with us, and then separated from us by the “deep sleep” of death, while we came, as it were, from His risen side, by faith in His shed blood. Adam was separated, that he might be re-united to Eve, in greater joy than ever,—such joy that poetry burst from his lips, in celebration of the event, which Dr. R. F. Horton renders:

“She, she is bone of my bone,
And flesh of my flesh is she;
‘Woman’ her name, which has grown
Out of man,—out of me.”

51. And one day Christ will come again, “to our joy,”—for it was “expedient” for Him to go, and return again, He told us. And one day we shall recognize, as we do not now, that Christ is our very “other self,” as Adam did of Eve; “for we are members of His body,” and “joined to the Lord,” we are “one spirit,” also. Mary Magdalene seems to have first discovered this, in experience,—for she exclaimed to the supposed gardener: “Tell me where thou hast laid Him, and I will take Him away,”—an unconscious claiming of His body as her very own property, in a love of sexless chastity. No wonder that He could but manifest Himself to such love! (John 20:11-18).

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