(Image courtesy of https://i0.wp.com.)
This is the last of a two-part series on femininity and sexuality.  Our current cultural beliefs are in direct opposition to the truths determined by our Creator.  These articles will explore the common cultural beliefs and Biblical truths regarding these two topics.

Our culture has hijacked femininity.  Biological and natural traits separate the sexes in many ways.  Contrary to popular belief, females are distinct from males.

For instance, a couple weeks ago my wife and I were to go on a date.  We had to find a babysitter and choose a place to go.  The days leading up to our date, however, revealed many differences.  Lauren had been looking forward to a date night all week.  I was busy with work and other things, keeping the date night in the back of my mind, but doing little to prepare for it.  When Friday night finally came, our differing expectations became apparent.

As we stepped into the truck, I asked Lauren, "Do you want to go the fish fry at the diner?"

"A fish fry?" was Lauren's response.  "I do not find a fish fry romantic."  I was offended.  I love diners!  (Eventually, we ended up at a sushi place - the last place I wanted to go.)

A few things became blazingly apparent on our date night.  For one, I was operating in a very different mindset.  Whenever I would go out to eat with my friends when I was single, we would pile in the truck and decide where we were going on our way there.  Most of us weren't interested in finding a restaurant with great atmosphere; we just wanted to eat the food - and lots of it.

Lauren, however, is different.  She wants to feel the experience.  She wants to know and feel she is important and special.  Presentation matters.  Romance is an art.  This is something that I have to learn, although it certainly goes against my nature.

As I reflected on our date night and my blunderings, I realized that I had been influenced by my culture more than I thought.  In contrast to our culture, chivalry is important.  1 Peter 3:7 says, "Likewise, husbands, live with your wives in an understanding way, showing honor to the woman as the weaker vessel, since they are heirs with you of the grace of life, so that your prayers may not be hindered."

This verse is packed with meaning!  First of all, Peter is making a comparison to something mentioned earlier ("likewise").  What is his comparison?  He is comparing the way husbands should live with their wives to how Jesus lived with us.  Christ's pure conduct and humiliation are examples for husbands to follow.  Husbands ought not to think proudly, but to condescend to their wives.

Specifically, the husband's conduct ought to be marked by "understanding".  This means to not be ignorant of the wife's needs, just as Christ was not ignorant of the needs of His elect, but instead subjected Himself to death for their sake.  He gave them the righteousness they needed.  So, what are the needs of the wife?  She needs gentleness and affection (Ephesians 5:25).  And, since she was created from man, she needs man - his kindness, his encouraging words, his love (Ephesians 5:26).

Not only these, but she also must be shown honor because she is the "weaker vessel".  To show honor means to recognize her differences, not diminish them, for she is different from man.  For the wife to be described as the "weaker vessel" means that she is in need of tenderness and gentleness, unlike the man, for he is not wired that way.  Therefore, don't treat her the same as a man!  Treat her as a woman, for she is a frail, delicate, fragile vessel.  (Frail, delicate, and fragile are actually synonyms of weak.)  Indeed, Christ is not harsh or unfeeling with His people.  Remember, it is "His kindness that leads you to repentance".  Therefore, husband, be not harsh (cold, indifferent, rough, dictatorial, severe) with your wife, but instead be patient, kind, and loving.  Shepherd your wife; care for her as the Good Shepherd cares for His sheep.

Lastly, Peter gives husbands a strong reason why they should treat their wives with honor and understanding: "since they are heirs with you".  While woman is distinct from man, she is equal in value; likewise, your wife is an equal heir with you of the eternal Kingdom of God, and the riches that are yours in Christ Jesus are also hers!  On the other hand, if husbands do not do these things, their prayers will be hindered and Christ will not be glorified.  Husband's, do not rob Christ of His glory.

In summary, women ought to be treasured and treated with delicacy.  They cannot and should not be treated as equal to men in society.  This is contrary to the culture.  Women ought to have the door opened for them; they ought to have their husbands dote on them; they ought to be romanced.  All of these things are contrary to our current cultural beliefs.

It is amazing to me that we have so much confusion in today's culture about one's sexuality.  I was talking to a young man recently who described himself as "a-sexual".  He declared himself neutral, but sometimes swayed stronger in his attraction toward females, while other times he swayed stronger in his attraction toward males.  Every argument he laid forth for his position was theological in nature (as they always are).  "I feel..." "I think..." "I see it this way..." "This is my path..." were the common sentence openers during our conversation.  I calmly directed him back to the Bible, as God's Word is the only truth we can rely on - not emotions, thoughts, or experience.

Indeed, God's Word is more than clear on this subject.  Genesis 1:26-28 and 2:18-25 state clearly that God created male and female in His image with sexuality and gender.  His Word is also clear that men and women are complementary to one another - they complete each other.  Additionally, it is clear that God made sexuality for the purpose of pro-creation in the context of marriage for life.

Additionally, one can see that homosexuality is unnatural.  This is the amazing truth today, however: there is an entire generation growing up today who are completely ignorant of their natural biology, much less of the natural world around them.  What an opportunity for the Gospel light to shine into the darkness of the culture!

Lastly, one chief argument the Revisionists (mentioned in the part one of this series) hold to is found in Ezekiel 16:49-50, which states:
Behold, this was the guilt of your sister Sodom: she and her daughters had pride, excess of food, and prosperous ease, but did not aid the poor and needy.  They were haughty and did an abomination before me.  So I removed them, when I saw it.
Remember, Revisionists say that Sodom and Gomorrah were destroyed because of the sin of inhospitality and violence, not homosexuality.  This is, a rather shallow way to look at this event, however.  In reality, all sin is worthy of the wrath of God.  Indeed, homosexuality is a sin, but the population of Sodom were sinners in many ways.  All of their collective sin is what brought the judgement of God upon them.

It is true, then, that homosexual desire and behavior are consequences of rejecting God.  This is what Paul argues in Romans 1, that "God's wrath is revealed against all ungodliness and unrighteousness".  Later, Paul shows that as a result of this depravity, men give up their natural relations for unnatural ones.  Therefore, homosexual desire and behavior is a consequence of rejecting God, summarized in by Paul when he says, "Claiming to be wise, [those who reject God] became fools [considering and] exchanging the glory of the immortal God for [idols]" (Romans 1:22-23).

In closing, Robert Gagnon says the following:
Just as idolaters degrade their own humanity by choosing to worship an image of another creature rather than the Creator, so too the one engaged in homosexual conduct is degraded by ignoring the obvious design for sexuality in basic human anatomy and physiology.
Understanding femininity rightly must be done by the manual of God's Word.  He made women; therefore, He knows most about them.  His Word is clear that a woman's role in marriage is to complement her husband - "created to be his helper" (Genesis 2:18-20).  This is not demeaning, for God Himself is described as man's strong helper.  Furthermore, Proverbs 31 describes a woman as strong, but her strength does not undermine her husband.  Lastly, the Gospel is the only answer to feminism.  The Bible is authoritative, not individual experience or feelings.  The same is true of our sexuality.  God is very explicit that he has made "male and female in His image".  Any other "orientation" is sinful; such sinful passions need to be put to death, not encouraged or promoted.  (And let us not miss the opportunity to counsel those who flaunt their gender-confusion; usually, these people have been sexually abused, lack male leadership in their lives, and are addicted to pornography.  Keep in mind that homosexuality is a result of rejecting God, usually, as in the case of Sodom, in many areas of sinful living.)

"Biblical Christianity cannot be reduced to behavioral modification.  Authentic Christianity results in people becoming obedient from the heart (Romans 6:17)" (Denny Burk and Heath Lambert, Transforming Homosexuality, 2015).