Anyone who has read the Bible knows it is overflowing with sexism, but what I would like to focus on in this article is the origins of biblical sexism. What I mean by origins is, who introduced sexism in the Bible, and why is it such a fundemental property of Scripture? To find the answer to those questions, we must begin in the second chapter of Genesis; the book of beginnings.
Everyone who is familiar with the story of Adam and Eve knows that the God of the Bible creates Adam from the dust of the ground and places him in a garden paradise. But, a problem soon arises when Adam cannot find a helpmate from all the animals he is told by God to name. The solution to this problem is given by God himself who then creates woman from man and for man, setting the stage for gender imbalance that continues throughout the entire Bible. Now, I’m sure if Genesis, chapter one had been used as the foundation of male/female relations the biblical story would have had an entirely different outcome, but alas that is not the case.
Gen.1:26-27 And God said, Let us make man in our image, after our likeness: and let them have dominion over the fish of the sea, and over the fowl of the air, and over the cattle, and over all the earth, and over every creeping thing that creepeth upon the earth. So God created man in his own image, in the image of God created he him; male and female created he them.
After the biblegod introduces the idea of gender inequality in chapter two, by creating the female in a different fashion than the male and creating her for the specific purpose of being a helper instead of an equal, the sexism only gets worse in chapter three. As punishment for Adam and Eve’s disobedience, the biblegod introduces the idea of enmity between the man and woman by cursing the woman with male domination (telling the woman that the man will rule over her). Most thinking people would immediately react to this curse by stating “where is the justice in this punishment?” Not only is the biblegod introducing the idea of one gender being superior to the other, but he has completely destroyed any sense of justice in “the punishment fitting the crime”.
From this point on things take a turn going from bad to worse, women become the property of men; they are owned by the father and sold to the husband. Their value is half that of a man and they are denied equal human rights. Now, the reality of the situation is that what the biblical authors were recording was no more than the customs and laws of their societies at the time the Bible was written, so of course the gods they invent are going to mirror their values at the time. The point that I am trying to make in this article is that biblically speaking the idea of sexism was introduced and promoted by the biblegod, and not some misinterpretation of modern translators. The Bible clearly and explicitly gives credit to its god for denying basic human rights to women based on gender. In the Bible women DO NOT have control over their own bodies, but rather that control has been given to men by its god, Yahweh. This is the reason the problem of biblical sexism can never be resolved, because it is at the very core of Yahweh’s nature which is male supremacy.