Is It Time To Change The Rules?

Recently I entered a strange world–it’s called Twitter. Oh, I’ve had a Twitter account and these musings here show up in my Twitter feed. But instead of just “tweeting”, “liking”, and the occasional “retweet”, I decided to dive in to a thread that, well, got my attention.

It was about doing away with the Electoral College because it wasn’t . . . fair. I was amazed at the number of people wanting to abolish the Electoral College all because “their” candidate wasn’t elected. The theme of being unfair rang throughout the rants.

And I was dumbfounded by those who didn’t understand it. I made a simple comment, excuse me, “tweet”, that the U.S. is a Representative Republic and not a democracy. One “twit” (I know my snarky is coming out) corrected me by saying that Google corrects it to “Representative Democracy”. I tweeted that just because Google said it doesn’t make it true. Right now I’ve drawn all the curtains and regularly peek outside to see if the mob armed with torches and axes are approaching the house. And I wept that so many were being educated by Google rather than knowledge and common sense.

I could go on about what I encountered, but another thought came over me. It was the question that is the title of this post: “Is It Time To Change The Rules?” It seems to me that our culture is being driven to accept only the results that it desires in the moment. If rules gets in the way of achieving those desires, then the rules need to be changed in order to achieve the wanted outcome.

Now, those who know me knows that I can be a rebel by breaking some of the rules. And there are some rules that indeed need to be changed. Our nation has a history of changing rules, rules that are unjust, rules that demean human life, or make it impossible for citizens to reach out for their potential. Some rules have taken a long time, too long of a time, to be changed.

It has happened even in the church. Wrong and sinful things were justified and approved. People were segregated by social status and the color of their skin. Women were denied the opportunity to pursue God’s call on their life. (Some still deny them that right. And for those who sincerely believe I am wrong on this, it’s OK for you to be wrong. And if you take Paul’s “let women be silent in church” out of context, then I’ll take it out of context and say that women can’t sing in church! Yes, that’s me being snarky.)

Yes, rules have been changed. Those changes happened because there were rules that needed to be broken, urgently needed to be change. Why? Not because a group decided those rules were unfair. The rules weren’t changed so that some group could get their way. They were changed because those rules were unjust.

It’s the desire to change the rule in order have one’s own way at any cost that disturbs me most. There is an attempt in my Tribe to change the rules on Christian conduct; to change the definition of God-Approved Marriage. And when the rule won’t change, they live in open disobedience, with little or no consequences. And this desire to change the rules in order to get one’s desired outcome has led to chaos and anger; anger and chaos; and it’s ripping apart both our nation and church.

Yes, some rules need to be changed. But never, ever, ever simply to achieve some personal desire or wish. Rules that need to be changed are those of justice and keeping the doors of opportunity open to anyone and everyone. Changing the rules needs to be done through discernment, deep thought, and focused on the issues of justice and human dignity. The Electoral College is about as fair as it gets–so it’s not about justice. The Electoral College doesn’t take away human dignity. And this is for the cupcakes–when your candidate isn’t elected, it’s NOT a matter of dignity; it just that you act so UNdignified. So why change that rule? Changing rules to achieve one’s personal (and often selfish and void of common sense) desires, will only devolve into chaos–and that chaos will invite tyranny into the U.S.; something the Founding Fathers worked hard to prevent.

4 thoughts on “Is It Time To Change The Rules?

  1. A little bit, yes. To be honest, this is a scripture that I have wrestled with *forever* so I am always interested in someone else’s take on it.

    I am on the same page as you with regards to the context, that these verses address orderly conduct in worship. It’s the “women be silent” part that I struggle with. Clearly, Paul can’t mean that women aren’t supposed to raise their voices in prayer, praise and thanksgiving as they worship. The scriptures record the songs and prayers of women right along those of men, and insists that the prayers of all believers are edifying and efficacious.

    So if it can’t mean that we (women) are to refrain from all speech/sounds, whatever, during worship, then what DOES it mean? Was Paul’s prohibition directed towards the unruly women at Corinth only, or are we to understand it in a larger context as well?

    Is there something in this text that indicates to you that it should be understood in the narrow unruly-women-at-Corinth sense only? And if so, what?

    Appreciate your willingness to engage with me on this. You’ve probably figured out that I come from one of those faith traditions that limits the pastoral office to candidates with the qualities outlined in the letters to Timothy and Titus. And I just can’t get past the fact that one of the qualifications appears to be…Be a man. To me, it seems very straightforward, yet many Christians of good will have come to a different conclusion. If Jesus did NOT intend to exclude women from the pastoral office, then it would be wrong (on many levels) to profess otherwise.

    Iron, as they say, sharpens iron, and I am willing to be led to wherever it is that Scripture leads to.

    Liked by 1 person

  2. Could you please explain what you consider the “proper context” to understand what Paul means by “let women be silent in church”? It seems pretty straight forward to me…I’d like to understand your position (though I may not agree with it).

    I’m not interested in arguing my position at all…just interested in yours.

    Thanks

    Liked by 1 person

    1. Paul is addressing the chaotic nature of what was happening in the Corinthian church at that time. It could mean that some women were adding to the chaos in the Corinthian worship. Also, typical seating arrangements in that time period was that men sat in the front and women sat in the back. Paul’s reference to asking their husbands would indicate this type of seating arrangement. And for those who quote this to say literally that women cannot be preachers/pastors–to apply it literally means literally be silent throughout the entire worship time, which means, “no singing out loud”. Hope this helps to understand where I am coming from.

      Like

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