It seems that Mark Driscoll is not preaching at this time of year (seems odd to me, but I guess it is a relatively insignificant difference compared to many).
Anyway on the Mars Hill blog they are replaying old sermons from Mark Driscoll. I have criticised his teaching (note it is from the same year) in the past but here is something I want to agree with:
In 10 Ways the Doctrine of Suffering Is Mistaught | The Mars Hill Blog there is this paragraph:
I had this conversation with a wife whose husband was beating her. I said, “What in the world are you doing remaining with a man who beats you and your children?” She said, “But, God is teaching me so much through this and I’m growing in my relationship with Jesus.” I said, “Well, praise be to God and be sanctified, but call the police. Have him arrested and thrown in jail. He, too, needs to be sanctified, not just you.”
This is good news. There are far too many reports of pastors in Male Headship Churches telling women that they should suffer at least for a season (see part of my post 42: The Simple Pastor: We differ on eldership not leadership).
One problem is that when (like Mark Driscoll) you teach that women are not equal to men (otherwise known as Male Headship or Complementarianism) you are on a slippery slope. If you teach that men have authority over women and that wives should submit to their husbands then there are some men who are going to use this as an excuse for the husband to demand that the wife submits to violence and other forms of abuse. Indeed we have heard Mark Driscoll teach a woman that she should give her husband oral sex (even though she does not wish to).
John Piper admits this: see Women In Ministry » Ask John Piper – Do some complementarians deny women opportunities?
I do not believe that God requires a system that institutionalises vulnerability to abuse in the way that Male Headship does. See some of my other posts on this:
For me there is little doubt. Systems that lock power away from certain members of society have a history of causing abuse and harm (eg apartheid, slavery, racism). For me with my experiences there is no doubt that male headship falls into this category. It does not mean all men who claim male headship are abusers, but it does have more potential for that to happen.