Doug Phillips’ Balance Sheet: Vision Forum Ministries vs. Vision Forum, Inc.

Many people have noticed that there are two sides to Vision Forum:  the ministry side, which is a 501c3; and the business side, which is where most of the money is made.  This is a convenient way to have the best of both worlds:  the tax advantages of being able to collect lots of free money without having to pay taxes; and the freedom to have the opportunity to make even more money by selling products at a profit.  Neither one is wrong, and I am not against anyone making money legitimately.  If Doug Phillips has earned money, then he should be entitled to it.  But this type of tax structuring presents a few problems today.

Vision Forum Ministries is the ministry side of Vision Forum.  This is the side that takes donations, puts on events, and through which Doug Phillips schedules all his speaking engagements.  Vision Forum Ministries has six officers; Doug Phillips has always been the President, and until recently, Howard Phillips, Doug’s father, was the Vice President.  I do not know if he has been replaced yet.  That leaves two directors, Don Hart and Scott Brown, and the CFO (Josh Wean) and Secretary (Jim Zes).

Vision Forum, Inc. is the retail store of Vision Forum.  This is the side where Doug Phillips has his blog and he sells all his products.  The owner of Vision Forum, Inc. is Doug Phillips.  As owner, there is nothing to step down from.  The owner has 100% sole discretion as to what to do with the income earned from the business.  Since this is a private business, I do not have any real numbers to work with, but after salaries and expenses are paid, it is certainly Doug Phillips’ decision as to what happens to the rest of that money.  I see that they changed the name of Doug’s blog to “Vision Forum Blog” today, but don’t be fooled — Doug Phillips is still the sole owner of Vision Forum, Inc.

As President of Vision Forum Ministries, Doug Phillips took home $44,035 in 2011, the latest tax record on file.  The Form 990 also states that he earned $24,254 in related income (speaker honorariums?) and that he worked about 30 hours a week on the ministry side.  But that does not accurately represent Doug Phillips’ total income.

Some ministries have a “parsonage” for the minister and his family to live in, and Vision Forum Ministries is no exception.  Vision Forum Ministries owns two buildings in San Antonio: the Vision Forum office/warehouse building and the Phillips’ family home.  Doug Phillips and his family live in a very nice 6000 square foot home.  To be fair, they have been very hospitable and opened their home for many church and ministry functions.  I have many good memories there.

But that parsonage is a huge amount of Doug Phillips’ “income” from Vision Forum Ministries.  It is considered part of his salary, and is a tax-free benefit.  Since Doug Phillips maintains a large home office there as well, he may write off his office on his personal income taxes as well.  I do not know who pays the utilities, but I do know that the ministry side owns this house.  When a pastor leaves a church for any reason, it is usually stated in their contract how long they have to leave the parsonage, if provided, after they are no longer connected with the ministry.  This is usually 30, 60, or 90 days.

Now, don’t get me wrong.  I am not advocating that Beall and the children be thrown out in the streets because of Doug Phillips’ decisions in life, but I also realize that the choices of one often impact the lives of their loved ones as well.  I have certainly experienced that first hand and wouldn’t wish it upon anyone.  What I am curious about, more than anything, is what will happen with this substantial part of Doug Phillips’ salary that directly comes from Vision Forum Ministries.  How will this be reconciled?

In addition to this gorgeous home, we have his salary from Vision Forum, Inc., which could be substantial, and his royalties.  Doug Phillips is not taking much of a cut in income here.  Doug Phillips states that he will be “serving as a foot soldier” during this time.  This means he will still be working in the business he owns.

I have recently found out that Doug Phillips resigned from his position of Elder at Boerne Christian Assembly early this year.  This concerns me.  Either there were two very serious allegations against Doug Phillips, one serious enough to impact the church at the beginning of the year, and another one that prompted his recent resignation; OR he resigned as Elder because of this “serious sin” with another woman about nine months before he resigned as President of his ministry.  How genuine does that repentance sound now?  And why is he not under church discipline?  I can guarantee you that anyone else would be under church discipline for this type of behavior.  (I personally think there are better ways to handle it, but what’s good for the goose should be good for the gander, too.)

While I was checking out Vision Forum Ministry’s Form 990, I had a couple other questions that maybe someone can help me with.  The first one regards the purchase of the radio program, Jonathan Park.  Vision Forum Ministries bought Jonathan Park from Vision Forum, Inc. for $670,833.

“The organization acquired a program for the price of $670,833 called the J Park Program which is a fully developed radio broadcast that is now on 400 radio stations.  Consistent with this organization’s mission, the J Park radio program promotes and teaches the study of science from a Christian perspective.  Various products are sold in conjunction with this program that should make it self sustaining.  This program was purchased from Vision Forum, Inc. and was purchased for a price established by a third party appraisal firm.  The acquisition price of this program is listed as an asset on the balance sheet within, not of amortization.”

So, the ministry side paid $670,833 to the business side of Vision Forum.  I’m scratching my head as to how this would benefit Vision Forum Ministries.  They still sell all these products through Vision Forum, Inc., the business side, but the ministry side receives the money.  Why are some products on the ministry side and other products are on the business side, yet all products are sold through the business side?  What am I missing?

What I am not missing is that Vision Forum Ministries is the side that accepts donations.  In 2011, Vision Forum Ministries received $2,606,157 in donations.  That is not sales, that is just free money that homeschooling families freely gave to Doug Phillips.  Let me repeat that.  Two and a half million dollars.  Of that $2,606,157, Vision Forum Ministries “paid” $670, 833 to Doug Phillips’ personal business to “buy” a product they already owned.  Where did that money go?  Directly to the owner of Vision Forum, Inc.  So now, the donations of homeschooling families are being used to buy assets already owned by Vision Forum, so that Vision Forum can transfer money from the non-taxable side to the owner’s pockets.  But maybe I am missing something here.

As I was reading through the questions and answers on Vision Forum Ministry’s Form 990, I had a couple other questions.  On page 3, question 3 states: “Did the organization engage in direct or indirect political campaign activities on behalf of or in opposition to candidates for public office?”  This is a huge requirement for keeping a 501c3 status.  Vision Forum Ministries answered “No.”  Technically, that is true.  But how many people say to themselves, “Doug Phillips is not speaking on behalf of the ministry side of the house when he talks about politics; he is only speaking on behalf of his business side”?  Or, when we think of Doug Phillips, do we think of Vision Forum, without trying to figure out which side of the house he is speaking from?  In fact, when we read Doug’s Blog, it is a combination of Vision Forum’s ministry side, as he both advertises and reports on all the events connected to the ministry side of Vision Forum, as well as advertises and reports on all activities associated with the business side.  On Doug’s Blog, they all run together.  When we think of Doug Phillips, it all runs together in our minds as simply, “Vision Forum.”

So, let’s see if the average reader of Doug’s Blog would consider that Vision Forum Ministries does not engage in direct or indirect political campaign activities on behalf of or in opposition to candidates for public office.  There are literally hundreds of entries that could be used as examples, but here and here are a couple that I found on a quick search of Doug’s Blog.  What do you think?  Would you agree that Vision Forum is not involved at all in politics?

Let us not forget that Doug Phillips’ father, Howard Phillips, Vision Forum Ministries’ Vice President, was a founding member of the Constitution Party, and that the Constitution Party itself was heavily involved in politics.  That is a very close political connection, especially considering that Howard Phillips ran for President of the United States three times.

Although I was not excommunicated by Vision Forum Ministries, I cannot help but see the irony of my response to Doug Phillip’s blog article on voting, written on Vision Forum’s website, as the impetus for my excommunication.  Politics are certainly strongly interwoven into all things Vision Forum.

One last little question, found on page 5, question 2 of Vision Forum Ministries Form 990: “Enter the number of employees reported on Form W-3, Transmittal of Wage and Tax Statements …” Answer: 8  “If at least one is reported on line 2a, did the organization file all required federal employment tax returns?”  Answer: “No.”  Huh?  They have eight employees but they did not file the required tax returns.  And they told the IRS that.  Somebody please help me out with that one!

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Doug Phillips’ Fear Propaganda at the Ballot Box

Although the stated reasons for my excommunication were quite vague and broad-brushed, with no evidence given whatsoever, I believe the main underlying reason why Doug Phillips excommunicated me really had to do with politics. Well, that was the outward circumstance for an inward attitude. Four years ago, as we prepared for the presidential election, Doug Phillips took a very strong stand on why Christians should vote for Michael Peroutka, a virtually unknown candidate for the Constitution Party, the party of Doug’s father, Howard Phillips. For weeks and weeks before the election, we heard political propaganda pounded into us from the pulpit and through the discussion time of the men after the weekly sermon.

Now, I have nothing personally against Peroutka, and he may have been a very fine candidate, but there were many reasons why I was not going to vote for him. And since we live in a free country, and since Jesus bought our spiritual freedom as well, I certainly thought I had the freedom to vote for any presidential candidate I thought best. Little did I know at the time that by reason of my being born female, I was not to be afforded the privilege of freely choosing whom I wanted to vote for.

Now that I’ve had time to reflect on everything, it seems that one way that Doug Phillips can promote his political agenda is to keep women from participating, not only by stating that it is a sin for women to be in politics, but also that God does not allow women to vote. In Doug’s world, women are not allowed a college education where they might be exposed to political issues. In Doug’s brand of hyper-patriarchy, women are not allowed to have an opinion or a belief that is not their husband’s as well. When it comes to politics, that is a subject that is verboten to women and should only interest men.

A quick review of the last election run-in with Doug Phillips

Although Doug Phillips does not normally allow comments on his blog (which should be a huge red flag already — no dissent allowed), on this one particular occasion, he did actually solicit his readers’ opinions to a voting scenario he laid out between candidates A and B. Having previously spoken with one of the Vision Forum employees about my concerns regarding Doug’s views on politics, this particular employee had encouraged me to write Doug and express my own thoughts on the matter. I did not feel at liberty to do so at the time, but when this blog article came out just a few days before the election, I immediately jumped at the chance to participate. Of immense interest to me was a voting debate hosted by Doug Phillips and posted at the same time. I chose to respond to both.

Could I have responded any better? Of course! First, emotions were running high on both sides. Second, this was my very first attempt at taking a side on any issue, so I was not versed at all in the skill of debate. Third, as I look back at where I was spiritually then, I wince when I read that I wrote things like “Shame on you” to my elder. Although I meant it lightheartedly, it was not appropriate to say, and I was wrong for saying that. But was I wrong for writing it in the first place? Was I wrong for having an opinion? Was I wrong for voicing my opinion? No.

But I wrote my response and sent it off with my husband’s full blessing to Doug’s private email address so that no one else need know about it. Why did my response that Friday generate such a riposte then in return on Sunday? When Doug arrived at church that Sunday, shortly after the service had already started, I asked to speak to him outside. Very reluctantly, he agreed. As I apologized for gossiping about him a couple weeks earlier, I asked if he would forgive me. Rather than doing so, he qualified his forgiveness by asking if I would also apologize for writing him the voting letter. I did not see that I had sinned in doing so, and said as much. Refusing to forgive me for gossiping then, Doug threatened me instead, “You’re going to pay for this!” I had no idea at the time that this was a threat of excommunication. As I found out later, though, my sin was not in writing and sending the email, but in being a woman. I was told that the letter would have been fine if Mark was the one who had written it, even though his name was included and it was sent with his full blessing.

Much to my surprise, Doug then went inside to preach, but it was not the next chapter in I Kings this week. No, he pulled out my letter and began to read from it. As he would read each point, he would preach against it, point by point. He did not say my name, but I found it quite comical to see him so incensed by my letter that he chose to preach against it two days before the election. That was my first indication that BCA was no longer a church, but a cult.

Doug Phillips’ “Biblical” Principles of the Ballot Box

Super Tuesday is almost upon us now and Doug Phillips has released a new CD called “Biblical Principles of the Ballot Box,” available for a donation of any amount. I have not listened to it, but I do wonder if it is that sermon where he preached against my letter, point by point. Whatever it is, I am quite confident that I know the basics of what it contains. There is one thing I have noticed about Doug Phillips over the years: his positions do not change at all, but they do grow more and more extreme. So, I will relay his position according to the last election four years ago, but I wouldn’t be surprised to see even more extremes as we continue building up to the elections this November.

Is Doug still upset about my voting letter? In his blog entry last Monday, January 28th, he talked about Christians who are “fearful” of voting according to the Bible. Look at some of the hyperbole he uses in that article:

At stake is far more than the presidency. We can “win” an election, and yet sell our spiritual birthright.

As I have gotten into the habit of highlighting unnecessary language in Doug’s writings, it has become clear that much of his “vision” is fear-driven propaganda. Let’s strip away the rhetoric and see what he is telling us. First, if we don’t vote for the “biblical” candidate, we are like Esau, selling our “spiritual” birthright. And that is more important than the election itself. Wow. I don’t remember Esau selling his birthright for a vote for the wrong presidential candidate. Maybe I’m wrong, but I don’t think so. But it’s kind of scary to think that we might end up like Esau, especially when we think about what God said about him: “Jacob have I loved, but Esau I have hated.” Talk about a heavy burden. I thought this was the land of the free. I thought we were free to vote for any presidential candidate. When Jesus said He came to set us free, I wonder if He meant freedom except that He would lay upon us the burden of selling our spiritual birthright if we voted for the wrong candidate for president of the United States of America. That’s a pretty heavy fear tactic.

[W]hat matters the most is that the Church remains faithful to her Bridegroom by following the only infallible standard ever written for the selection of civil magistrates.

I suppose I would have to listen to the CDs to find what these verses are that detail exactly how we should vote in the upcoming elections. I agree that there are certainly principles we can find in Scripture, such as being careful of voting for those who promote murder through abortion, but most of the principles Doug is espousing here are certainly extra-biblical and have little-to-nothing to do with how we are really to vote. Perhaps this is the section where God does not allow women to vote either. However, if we look at Doug’s reasoning here, we will soon be quite fearful that we would be unfaithful to our Bridegroom if we vote for the wrong person. Now our vote is raised to the level of spiritual adultery. The fear level continues to grow.

Some believe that the Bible is silent on the question of what standards should govern the selection of a civil magistrate. But to reach this conclusion is to deny the sufficiency of Scripture, and to substitute autonomous human reason for biblical revelation.

Does the Bible tell us how to vote? Or are we given liberty in this area? Is this an area where God expects us to use wisdom or must we follow the dictates of Doug Phillips in our private voting booth? If I vote for a different candidate than Doug Phillips does, am I denying the sufficiency of Scripture? That sounds as bad as saying that every woman who works outside the home is blaspheming Scripture. That’s pretty serious stuff. Autonomous is a word Doug likes to use in conjunction with antinomianism, so this statement is effectually saying that if you don’t vote for the right “biblical” candidate, you don’t believe the Bible and you are an antinomian. More fear tactics.

Others are so fearful of certain outcomes, that there is little reasoning with them.

But nobody really likes to be called “fearful,” so let’s attack those who use logic and reason to sort through the issues and win them over with lots of honey instead!

They want to condemn their brethren by saying that a vote for X, is really a vote for Y.

Aha! This is taken straight from my letter to Doug! He does remember! In this case, I said that a vote for Peroutka was really a vote for Kerry, in that it took votes away from Bush. When an election is as close as the last presidential election was, if voters who would otherwise have voted for Bush ended up voting for someone who didn’t have a snowball’s-chance-in-hell of winning, that was one less vote for Bush for each person who voted for Peroutka. Simple math shows that taking votes away from Bush increases Kerry’s numbers proportionately. But is it really condemnation to point out the obvious? Or is it just more fear tactics to use a trigger word for Christians like “condemn”?

Their election fears seem sometimes to rise to a self-righteous hysteria, governed more by emotions than objective standards.

Self-righteous hysteria! I can’t say for sure, but if Doug is speaking of me here, my hysteria was rather calm in that I didn’t let anyone else know about it except for Mark and Doug. Of course, telling others that they are reaching the level of being hysterical is certainly going to win them over to your point of view. And then we have emotions versus objective standards. I listed objective standards all throughout my paper in opposition to Doug’s emotional stance for Peroutka. In fact, I don’t believe he liked it when I suggested that perhaps Peroutka supporters were so heavenly minded that they were no earthly good in this election. I had a very difficult time finding any objective standards in Doug’s position. This is just more fear mongering on Doug’s part.

The Bible has the answer to the ethical chaos of fear-driven voting, pragmatic voting, “ends-justifies-the-means” voting, and “lesser-of-two-evils” voting.

Fear, fear, fear.

It explores the blessing presented in Scripture to all who will enter the ballot box with supreme confidence that the Lord sovereignly reigns, that He is more pleased with our obedience than with our rationalistic, extra-biblical voting strategies, and that the greatest hope for America is not found in the outcome of any one election, but in the persevering witness of the Church as God’s representative in America, to uphold his non-negotiable standards and righteousness.

Perhaps Doug Phillips and I will vote for the same candidate this year, but it will be with two very different motivations. I am not driven by fear that I will lose my spiritual birthright if I vote for the wrong candidate. I do not think I will cease to believe in the Bible if I vote for the wrong guy. I won’t get hysterical or self righteous, but I might use a little logic and reasoning and seek to understand the issues.

I don’t think God has promised me any blessings for voting for “God’s” candidate. God is sovereign and He will put the person He wants as president in office, with or without my vote. But Doug does have one statement right here: “He is more pleased with our obedience than with our … extra-biblical voting strategies.” We haven’t looked at any verses in this short article on Doug’s extra-biblical voting strategies, but we will continue to look at his political ideas this year and we will find that they are, indeed, very extra-biblical. Jesus gave us freedom. We live in a free country. Please do not be under the bondage that you must follow Doug’s voting strategies or God will not be pleased with you. You are free to vote for whomever you choose this year.

But in the end, it probably doesn’t really matter what my opinion is on the matter because I am, after all, only a woman, and God doesn’t allow women to vote!

We went to a rally in Victoria, Texas today. We were told that the Constitution guarantees us certain freedoms. It was good to see people enjoying their freedom today.

Vision Forum: The Biblical Picture of a Virtuous Woman Is Against a Woman Holding Civil Office

Part III:

In Proverbs 31:10-31, we are given the biblical picture of a woman who fears God and walks in His ways. The passage begins with a question: “Who can find a virtuous woman?” The question implies that such a woman is rare and precious, just like rubies. The description of the virtuous woman shows her to be an industrious, loving woman who devotes herself to the well-being of her husband and children. The center of her interest and the place of her ministry are in her home. God has called her to be “a keeper at home” (Titus 2:5), and she willingly and joyfully fulfills her calling to the great blessing of all who depend on her piety, wisdom, and homemaking skills.

Of great importance to the issue before us in this essay, are these words concerning her husband: “Her husband is known in the gates, when he sitteth among the elders of the land” (Prov. 31:23). The “gates” in Old Testament times referred to the place where the leaders of the city (i.e., “the elders of the land”) would gather to discuss community affairs, administer civil law, and judge in criminal and civil cases. The “gates,” therefore, is a reference to the “city hall,” the “capital building,” the “courthouse” or, in short, to the seat of civil government. The key for us is to note that, in the case of the virtuous woman, it is her husband who is active in the gates; the virtuous woman is not herself seated in the gates — she is active in her home. This should not surprise us, for the order of creation and the law of God establish the fact that men are to bear rule in civil government. The virtuous woman understands this, and takes the vital place that God has assigned her in the home and with her family; she does not try to intrude herself into a seat in the gates. However, we need to note that the virtuous woman’s works are to praised in the gates (Prov. 31:31). Her works are not in the gates, but they are to be praised in the gates; that is, those who are leaders in the community ought to recognize the great work that she is doing in support of the community by faithfully fulfilling her duties as a wife and mother (1 Tim. 2:15; 5:10, 14; Titus 2:3-5). This is her glorious work for the Lord and His kingdom. It is of the utmost importance!

Furthermore, it should be recognized that the virtuous woman does make her presence felt in community concerns. But it is through the influence that she has on her husband (and mature sons) that her wisdom and knowledge will help to direct the affairs of the community. Yes, it is her husband who sits in the gates, but his renown and ability as a civil leader is due, at least in part (if not largely), to her help and support. Yes, it is the husband who speaks and judges in the gates, but it is his wise and godly wife who is his chief counselor.

Let no one speak lightly or disparagingly of the woman’s appointed role and her service to Christ and His kingdom! And let no woman set aside the example of the virtuous woman and seek to sit in the gates with the rulers of the land. And let no Christian have any part in putting her there.

Vision Forum: The Biblical Qualifications for Civil Office Require Civil Leaders to Be Men

Part II of the same article by Bill Einwechter:

Every time the Scripture speaks to the subject of the necessary qualifications for those who will bear rule in the civil sphere, it always speaks in terms of men and never in terms of women. This is significant, and based on point number 1 above, it is not hard to understand. The consistent assumption of Scripture is that men are to be the civil magistrates; and, as we have seen, this is not based on culture but upon the created order. Since God is both Creator and Lawgiver there is never any contradiction between the created order and the law of God. And as creation establishes the headship of man in the civil sphere by means of man being created first and the woman being created for man, so the law of God sets the headship of man in the civil sphere by means of the stated qualifications for civil rulers. God set forth the essential qualifications for civil magistrates for all people and for all time when He spoke through Jethro to Moses: “Moreover, thou shalt provide out of all the people able men, such as fear God, men of truth, hating covetousness; and place such over them, to be rulers…” (Ex. 18:21; emphasis added). And Moses himself said to the people as they were about to choose their civil magistrates, “Take you wise men, and understanding, and known among your tribes, and I will make them rulers over you” (Deut. 1:13; emphasis added). Importantly, the word for “men” chosen by the Holy Spirit in both of these texts is the Hebrew, gender specific word for a man, i.e., a male as opposed to a female.

Furthermore, the directions that God gives concerning the establishment of a king in Israel requires that a man, and not a woman, be chosen (Deut. 17:14-20). The king was to be a “brother,” and he was not to “multiply wives to himself.” Clearly, a man is in view here. The law of God commands us, therefore, to choose men to be our rulers! Likewise, in every other passage of Scripture dealing with the civil magistrate and his qualifications and duties, men are in view (2 Sam. 23:3; Neh. 7:2; Prov. 16:10; 20:8, 28; 29:14; 31:4-5; Rom. 13:1-6; etc.). Therefore, the standard of God’s law that men be our civil rulers upholds the order of creation. God has spoken to us in His Word, and there He commands us to set men, not women, into positions of civil authority. To consider these texts (Ex. 18:21; Deut. 1:13; 17:14-20) irrelevant in regards to what they say about setting men in civil office, would logically require us to consider the other qualifications listed as being of no account as well. The rejection of these Scriptures would leave us with no biblical standard for citizens in choosing their rulers. This may suit some, but for those who are the disciples of Jesus Christ and love the law of God, such a position is abhorrent.

Vision Forum: The Headship of Man Disqualifies a Woman for Civil Office

Taken from this article by Bill Einwechter from Vision Forum Ministries:

The scriptural revelation of the creation of man and woman, and the scriptural commentary on their creation establishes the headship of the man over the woman. The text of Genesis 2:7 and 2:18-24 teaches us that man was made first, and then the woman was made to be man’s helper and companion. The Bible instructs us that this order of creation was by God’s design, and that it establishes the positional priority of the man over the woman in regards to authority and leadership. In setting forth the authority of the man over the woman in the context of the local church, Paul appeals to the creation order saying, “For Adam was formed first, then Eve” (1 Tim. 2:13). In another passage, Paul states the divinely ordained order of authority and headship: “But I would have you to know, that the head of every man is Christ; and the head of the woman is the man; and the head of Christ is God” (1 Cor. 11:3). Therefore, the Apostle Paul teaches that God has decreed that the order of authority be as follows: God-Christ-Man-Woman. Each one in this “chain of command” is under the headship (i.e., authority) of the one preceding him or her. Later on in this same text, Paul, as in 1 Timothy 2, calls upon the order of creation to show man’s headship over the woman. He says, “For the man is not of the woman; but the woman of the man. Neither was the man created for the woman; but the woman for the man” (1 Cor. 11:8-9). The Bible explicitly states that the man has headship over the woman, and that this headship is not based on cultural factors, or even the fall; rather, it is based on the created order established by God Himself.

Now it is also plain in the Bible that God has ordained that the order of the headship of man must be maintained in each governing institution set up by God. There are three primary institutions established by the Lord for the ordering of human affairs. These are the family, the church, and the state. Each of these institutions has authority to govern within its appointed sphere. We could say, then, that there are three “governments” in the world: family government, church government, and state government. In each of these governments, God has commanded that men bear rule. The man has headship in the family (Eph. 5:22-24), the church (1 Tim. 2:11-14; 1 Cor. 14:34-35), and also by implication and command, in the state as well (1 Cor. 11:3; Ex. 18:21; see point 2 below).

Could it be that the man has headship only in the family and the church but not in the state? No, this could not be, lest you make God the author of confusion, and have Him violate in the state the very order He established at creation and has revealed in Holy Scripture! If one is going to argue for the acceptability of women bearing rule in the civil sphere, then to be consistent, he or she also needs to argue for the acceptability of women bearing rule in the family and the church. Now it is true that some attempt to do just that; but their denial of male headship for the family, church, and state is really a rejection of the Word of God and is a repudiation of God’s created order. And it is not sufficient to contend that it is acceptable to support a woman for civil ruler when she is the best candidate, unless you are also prepared to argue that it is acceptable to advocate a woman for the office of elder because she is better suited than the available men in the church; and unless you are also prepared to say that the wife should rule over her husband if she is better equipped to lead than her husband is.

Vision Forum: God Does Not Allow Women to Vote

Lynn brought this up in a comment and I wanted to show the entire context of this statement on the Vision Forum website that “God does not allow women to vote.”

Until the twentieth century, Americans almost universally held to this doctrine of representation in some form or the other. The reason why women were not allowed to vote had nothing to do with women being considered “inferior” or “too emotional” (these values arose during the Victorian era and were themselves theologically and socially deviant) but rather because the husband and father was ASSUMED to represent the family to the broader community. By definition, there could only be ONE representative of the family just as there could only be ONE representative of the Human Race to God!

However, by the end of the 19th century, American Christians had largely stopped thinking in theological terms. Instead, an emotive, subjective religious “experience” (called Pietism”) emphasizing individual conversion replaced the comprehensive Christian worldview of the Reformation. As Christians failed to think biblically about all of life, they were unable to withstand either the new philosophies gaining ground in the universities or deal effectively with the changing social conditions of the Industrial Revolution. By the 20th century, American Christians saw the “height” of Christian activism as banning alcohol while at the same time affirming a woman’s right to vote. Both ideas were unmitigated disasters; God has not allowed the civil magistrate to outlaw wine and God does not allow women to vote (cf. 1 Tim 2:11ff). But by ignoring God’s law, American Christians both destroyed their own credibility (the Prohibition era is STILL a matter of public ridicule and repealing prohibition set the legal precedence for pornography, sodomy and the acceptance of other moral failures) and the integrity of own families.

In regards to a woman’s right to vote; if husband and wife are truly “one flesh” and the husband is doing his duty to represent the family to the wider community, then what PRACTICAL benefit does allowing women to vote provide? If husband and wife agree on an issue, then one has simply doubled the number of votes; but the result is the same. Women’s voting only makes a difference when the husband and wife disagree; a wife, who does not trust the judgment of her husband, can nullify his vote. Thus, the immediate consequence is to enshrine the will of the individual OVER the good of the family thus creating divisions WITHIN the family.