Hold on to the Good, Reject what is Evil: Headship and Submission in a World with Domestic Violence

Posted on December 14, 2017 
Filed under Opinion, Resources

“How do you feel when you hear the words ‘domestic violence’ and ‘headship and submission’ together? Uneasy? Embarrassed? Apologetic? There was a time when I felt all those things. Before coming to Moore College, I would have tended towards burying my head in the sand when it came to engaging with the doctrine of headship and submission as it came up in relation to the terribly confronting issue of domestic violence. How can we address the terror effectively while still holding to this doctrine?

Of course, domestic violence is utterly incompatible with the doctrine of headship and submission. That is a truth with which many convinced complementarians are (rightly) very familiar. Nevertheless, this doctrine is despised by the world and is often used against us, being viewed as something that actually fuels abuse.

Now more than ever we need to be ready to give a reason for the hope that we have—that the truth found in God’s word is not only still applicable and relevant, but also good. I can say from my experience as a former student and wife of a current student that Moore College – this firmly complementarian institution – has been a guiding light in thinking hard about how to deal with the evil of domestic violence in light of God’s good design for men and women. …”

The Australian Church Record published this opinion piece by Kirsten McKinlay in October. It’s still relevant.