Wife as Helper or Equal Mate?

Sarah Bowman
Sarah Bowman, studied family dynamics formally and informally all my life

I’m not sure I want to touch this one. According to the Bible, the wife is the husband’s property to do with as he pleases. But that is such a horrendous concept that I hesitate to put it out there, knowing how literally some people take the Bible. Women are humans, too, though the Bible hardly recognizes that fact. (I expect to get a lot of flak for saying this but as a woman reading the Bible, especially the Old Testament, I have been shocked at the coldness with which women were treated. Kings gave their daughters to war lords as prizes or rewards for conquests on the battle field. King David got one of his wives that way. There are phrases about “people, including women and children,” which obviously puts women outside the pale of “people.”)

Back to your question. The two of you seem to have a difference of opinion regarding the division of labour and responsibilities in your household. I get the impression that your wife does not want, or feel right to, take responsibility for the family expenses. Perhaps approaching the topic from the perspective of division of labour and sharing responsibility in the home and family will be more productive than looking at it from biblical command perspectives.


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