2018 Grace Life Conference (Session 19)

by Taffi Dollar | 12 Jul 2018

Summary

Adam and Eve’s sin in the garden of Eden brought about a number of consequences that were not in God’s original plan; some of the consequences resulting from their fall were the curses of patriarchy and violence. Men dominated over women, and it was generally accepted that women were subservient. It took Jesus’ coming to set things right again and restore gender equality. Christians now have a responsibility to treat each other with respect and dignity. We are also encouraged to consider everything we say to each other, and gauge whether it is for the benefit of the hearer. In the New Testament, there are multiple references to showing compassion and demonstrating God’s love through service to others, because this is what living under grace is all about. Under the old covenant of the law, men had the final authority and exercised rulership, but under the new covenant of grace, that is no more. Now, as believers, we all have equal authority.
  1. The sin committed in the garden of Eden allowed domination and violence to enter in.
    1. 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 (Genesis 3:16).
      1. Patriarchal relationships and men’s domination of women are results of Adam and Eve’s sin.
      2. This opened the door to the spirits of inferiority and superiority, and feelings of insecurity and inadequacy. It took Jesus coming to redeem us from these curses.
    2. The Lord trieth the righteous: but the wicked and him that loveth violence his soul hateth (Psalm 11:5).
      1. Patriarchy brought about violence, which is a by-product of the spirit of control.
    3. As a result of sin, violence came into being; God is displeased with this. Violence has no part in the new covenant or in those who are led by the Holy Spirit.
      1. The man who hates and divorces his wife,” says the  Lord , the God of Israel, “does violence to the one he should protect,” says the Lord Almighty. So be on your guard, and do not be unfaithful. You have wearied the  Lord  with your words. “How have we wearied him?” you ask. By saying, “All who do evil are good in the eyes of the  Lord , and he is pleased with them” or “Where is the God of justice?”(Malachi 2:16, 17, NIV).
      2. Wherefore, my beloved brethren, let every man be swift to hear, slow to speak, slow to wrath: For the wrath of man worketh not the righteousness of God… If any man among you seem to be religious, and bridleth not his tongue, but deceiveth his own heart, this man's religion is vain (James 1:19, 20, 26).
  1. God hates violence, but He is pleased when He sees the fruits of the Holy Spirit in us.
    1. The Bible has much to say about violence.
      1. But fornication, and all uncleanness, or covetousness, let it not be once named among you, as becometh saints; Neither filthiness, nor foolish talking, nor jesting, which are not convenient: but rather giving of thanks. For this ye know, that no whoremonger, nor unclean person, nor covetous man, who is an idolater, hath any inheritance in the kingdom of Christ and of God (Ephesians 5:3-5).
      2. Blessings are upon the head of the just: but violence covereth the mouth of the wicked…  The mouth of a righteous man is a well of life: but violence covereth the mouth of the wicked (Proverbs 10:6, 11).
    2. Let no corrupt communication proceed out of your mouth, but that which is good to the use of edifying, that it may minister grace unto the hearers(Ephesians 4:29).
      1. As Christians, we must watch what we say so that we can have grace-filled mouths and grace-filled lives. We should be mindful of how we communicate with and treat others.
    3. Bear ye one another's burdens, and so fulfil the law of Christ (Galatians 6:2).
      1. Real authority is modeled through service; Jesus modeled this throughout His entire life. He was the ransom, the payment of the penalty for our sins, and the perfect picture of the Father’s love.
  1. Believers have the Spirit to teach them how to treat others with love, grace, and respect.
    1. Wherefore lift up the hands which hang down, and the feeble knees(Hebrews 12:12).
      1. The Scriptures do not mention controlling others, because this is the opposite of God’s grace. We must learn how to treat each other.
      2. Many people think that being the head means having the “final say-so,” but the Holy Spirit actually wants to be the one in this place. Under grace, we are all kings and priests.
      3. But ye are a chosen generation, a royal priesthood, an holy nation, a peculiar people; that ye should shew forth the praises of him who hath called you out of darkness into his marvellous light (1 Peter 2:9).
    2. Using power and control to intimidate and threaten others is operating under the law; embracing equality in all our relationships is operating under grace.
      1. Jesus operated in a patriarchal society in which some people ruled over others. He demonstrated a different mindset that emphasized service to others (Matthew 20:20-28).
      2. Abusive relationships are about power and control, and they contribute to divorce and negative family dynamics. By comparison, healthy relationships model service and equality, and they promote respect for others.
      3. As parents, we eventually learn that parenting by the law, using fear and manipulation, does not work. Only through grace-based parenting can we teach our children how to make good decisions and live right, to prepare them for adult life.
      4. Under the law, men’s and women’s roles are determined by gender. Under Christ, they are determined by God’s grace that is on their lives.
    3. Christ has called us into peace, and into the example of serving, not dominating, each other. He has called us to truth, not to deceit or hypocrisy. He has called us to love, not abuse.
      1. And be ye kind one to another, tenderhearted, forgiving one another, even as God for Christ's sake hath forgiven you (Ephesians 4:32).
      2. Be kindly affectioned one to another with brotherly love; in honour preferring one another (Romans 12:10).
      3. Put on therefore, as the elect of God, holy and beloved, bowels of mercies, kindness, humbleness of mind, meekness, long suffering (Colossians 3:12).

Scripture References

Genesis 3:16

Psalm 11:5

Malachi 2:16, 17, NIV

James 1:19, 20, 26

Ephesians 5:3-5

Proverbs 10:6, 11

Ephesians 4:29, 32

Galatians 6:2

Hebrews 12:12

1 Peter 2:9

Matthew 20:20-28

Romans 12:10

Colossians 3:12