But we have to set some rules for this. If your beginning hermeneutic is something other than "God is loving"; your results are going to be different in the end. God delights to prove his love to us. He longs to use the failures and weaknesses of men (and women) to prove that He is who he said he was---a loving, holy, and perfectly just God.
If your image of God has been tainted by abusive men or angry women, you have to acknowledge that up front. Although I can not get in your head or your heart and wipe away the pain that others have caused, I can assure you that they were not representing God (even if they said they were). While certain men (so-called Christians) have come off treating women like crap in thought, word, or deed, has tainted people's view of God that the rest of us have to bend over backwards to make up for their nonsense.
Be assured, God is no man's debtor. These people will answer to God for their harsh treatment of women at the judgement seat.
So, the real question is not whether men abuse women or people abuse other people. That should be obvious. Just look around. People abuse people more and more every day. The entire pornography industry would not be alive and well if it were not for man's sinful delight in not only abuse of people but other people's delight in watching it. (yes, it is gross, gross, gross..)
But the real question is this: Does God, at his heart, think of women as any less than men? Are his specific instructions regarding their roles whether in the home or the church reflect a lesser stature to women? Do the graphic and horrid pictures of women being treated as (prostitutes, etc.) reflect God's approval on such situations? or atleast some form of tolerance?
Yes, these are hard questions.
They are worth grappling over. And they are areas that satan has definitely got a foothold on. Somehow that clever weasel has not only managed to treat women abusively over the ages but twist a few pieces of Scripture and blame God for the abuse. I don't have that kind of brain power to un-ravel that ball of yarn, but I can tell you that it is riddled with lies-- a lot of them.
What lie shall we un-ravel first? Any takers? Help me out here, ladies. There's so many that I'm not even sure where to start.