What is the status of women? How should women act? Are women different then men? These are age-old questions that many have attempted to answer. Milton and Shakespeare are two of these authors who have discusses the role of women. Sometimes in a dreary and depressing way, while at other times in a humorous enlightening way. The Merchant of Venice, as well as Paradise Lost, discusses women in all of these intriguing ways.
Women need guidance. Eve’s disobedience to God was due, in part, to Adams lack of guidance to her. While Eve still made the fatal decision, Adam should have been there to protect her. This demonstrates the biblical reason that a women would submit to her husband. He is created to guide and protect her, and she is created to help him.
This is not to say that women can’t make their own decisions, far from it. Women are responsible to God too, as is demonstrated in The Merchant of Venice where the women go into disguise for their husband’s sake. While this act demonstrates women’s freedom, it also shows how women are to serve their husbands.
Women are intelligent. They are designed by God to be able to fulfill the needs of their children and husband. The Merchant of Venice demonstrates the women coming to her husband’s aid, and being able to wittily get them out of a disastrous predicament. A women should be able to do this while counting on it in return as well.
Women are smart. They are created by God to be able to make intuitive decisions, yet as Eve did they fail too. They need the guidance of a stronger partner and leader. Ultimately though a woman’s only hope is to rest truly on God. Adam will fail Eve. Jessica will fail her father. Husbands will loose their rings. And a woman will ultimately fail God and herself. Salvation in Christ is the only way fro a woman to reach her full potential.