Spud, your example by one of the men in your study group who said "why can't women just accept that this is how god made them, they should just accept their lot in life and stop wanting to be equal, thats not what god made women for" really pushed my buttons. Aaaarrrrgh! The church is losing a lot of members with this attidude!
And I just loved your last sentence here "Its my view that if it were men who were considered less than women, in the bible, there would be no christian religion today, it would have simply been discarded." Can you just imagine?? You bet!