The Biblical Basis for Believing Men and Woman are ALWAYS EQUAL – Wade Burleson

“This false belief that males have inherent, God-given authority over women is an unbiblical, harmful, and heretical teaching…”

Wade Burlesonhttp://www.publicdomainpictures.net/view-image.php?image=74363&picture=silhouette-woman-and-man

Silhouette – Man and Woman

A decade ago Dee and I were members of Southern Baptist churches (different ones), and we discovered that pastors at Dee’s church were pushing for short engagements. Our question was WHY? We met with several pastors from her church to discuss the matter. It was an interesting dialogue, but in the wake of the meeting our views did not change.

However, something incredibly profound happened in the days following that summer meeting. Dee and I began delving into Christian topics online, and a whole new world opened up for us. Until then the internet had been an unexplored resource for me (Deb). I was driven to learn as much as possible about what was happening in the conservative corner of Christendom.

During our MANY hours of research, we came across Wade Burleson’s blog. Around the time that we discovered his writings, Wade had written an extremely important post about the permanent subordination of women that was being advocated by certain Southern Baptist leaders. It was then that we learned about the ESS controversy (Eternal Subordination of the Son). We were so grateful that Wade had taken the time to explain this confusing and controversial concept.

A couple days ago Wade Burleson revisited this topic and re-published his September 2008 blog post that proved to be so helpful to us. We are grateful that Wade has granted us permission to share it with our readers.

These are challenging times, and we hope you will take the time to inform yourself on this very serious matter. Please join with us in praying that ESS (or whatever it is called now) will be shown to be heretical.

We look forward to your commentary and hope you will chime in with any questions you may have.


Tweet It, Read It, Understand It: The Biblical Basis for Believing Men and Women Are Always Equal

I wrote an article ten years ago (September 2008), which is relevant today due to the current debacle being played out in the Southern Baptist Convention.

If you are a Christian who believes the Bible, take your time to read through this article to familiarize yourself with the reasons why men like Paige Patterson, Wayne Grudem, Bruce WareAl Mohler, and organizations like the Council for Biblical Manhood and Womanhoodbelieve that a man should always lead, and a woman should always submit.

These men teach that if the “roles” of men and women are ever reversed, it’s a sign that we are living in a wicked society  It’s the reason they fight hard to ignore the giftings of highly educated women and remove them from teaching men Hebrewin a seminary. It’s the reason they will tell a woman to return to her abusive husband, submit to him, and pray for him.

This false belief that males have inherent, God-given authority over women is an unbiblical, harmful, and heretical teaching (as I will show below). Yet, these Southern Baptist leaders say they are being “biblical” and those who disagree with them are people who don’t believe the Bible or simply pagans.

That’s just not so.

Ironically, these Southern Baptists who have promoted the inherent and eternal authority of males over females, may, in fact, be the Christian liberals among us. They seem to deny the clear teachings of Jesus Christ, act contrary to the pattern of behavior for all Christians as outlined out in the New Covenant Scriptures, and are subtly but dangerously falling short in their understanding of the Trinity.

Southern Baptists fought one alleged “battle for the Bible” years ago,  but this modern controversy is over believing and practicing some very important truths about gender equality which are in the Bible, the Bible which we Southern Baptists loudly proclaim we believe.


(Written by Wade Burleson, September 25, 2008)

Growing Semi-Arianism in the SBC and the Consequences for Women If Left Unchallenged

Periodically I will offer a doctrinal post for debate and discussion. Many Christians have little endurance when it comes to doctrinal reading and even less comprehension of how doctrine affects behavior.

This apathy for doctrine has far-reaching harmful consequences.

For this reason, I challenge you to carefully read the following article as it reveals a doctrinal debate within the Southern Baptist Convention that has direct consequences on our Convention’s attitude and behavior towards women.

Let me repeat the last sentence for clarity: There is a current doctrinal debate within the SBC that directly affects our Convention’s attitude and behavior toward women in general.

The Arian Controversy

Arius was a Christian who lived and taught in Alexandria, Egypt (250-336 AD). He became the leading proponent of heretical teaching that would later be identified with his name. Arianism is the belief that God the Father and the Son did not exist together equally and eternally, but that Jesus was created by God the Father and is eternally subordinate to the Father.

In plain English, Arianism teaches Jesus is inherently inferior to God the Father.

Some Christians wrongly confuse Arianism with Aryanism. The latter is the belief that the original speakers of the Indo-European languages and their descendants up to the present day constitute a distinctive, superior race. Hitler was an Aryan, but not an Arian. Aryanism is a belief in human racial superiority. Arianism is a belief in divine patriarchal hierarchy.

In 325 AD, Christian leaders gathered in the city of Nicaea (modern-day Iznik, Turkey) and debated the doctrine of the Trinity. The Council of Nicaea convened on May 20, 325 AD with around 300 pastors present to discuss the Arian Controversy.

After meeting for a solid month, these pastors issued on June 20, 325 AD what we now call The Nicene Creed.

The Nicene Creed is the clearest and most accepted statement on the divinity of Christ in the history of the church.

The Council declared that the Father and the Son are of the same substance and are co-eternal, believing this to be the biblical and traditional Christian teaching handed down from the Apostles.

The Nicaea Council believed that Arianism destroys the unity of the Godhead, and makes the Son unequal to the Father, in contravention of the Scriptures (“The Father and I are one” John 10:30).

The Council of Nicaea ended with the Christian pastors declaring Arius and his follower’s heretics.

A Resurging Semi-Arianism in the Southern Baptist Convention

The Council on Biblical Manhood and Womanhood is composed of many Southern Baptists who are introducing to evangelicalism a novel, if not peculiar, view of Christ which has more in common with Arianism than the historic, orthodox view of Christ’s person.

The theologians and teachers who write for the CBMW are teaching what they call the eternal subordination of the Son to the Father as a basis for their anti-New Testament and patriarchal view that the female is always to be subordinate to the male.

Women’s subordination to men, according to the teachings of CBMW, is established because it reflects the truth of Trinity. Women will always be subordinate to men and wives will always be subordinate to husbands because Jesus is eternally subordinate to the Father.

That is the scary doctrine being promoted by leading Southern Baptists, onr deemed heresy by the church nearly two millennia ago, and a doctrine that has disastrous consequences for women in the Southern Baptist Convention.

The Bible calls man’s desire to “rule over a woman” a sin. The notion that God designed leaders to be males, and that He designed women in the role of submissive servants to men, is a direct contradiction of the teachings of Jesus Christ.

“Jesus called His disciples together and said, “You know that the rulers of the Gentiles lord their power over people, and their high officials exercise authority over others. It shall not so with you. Instead, whoever wants to become great you must be your servant, and whoever wants to be first among you must serve.” (Matthew 20:25-27)

Some Southern Baptists, like Paige Patterson, Al Mohler,  and Wayne Grudem, believe and teach that the man is equated to God the Father in hierarchical authority. The woman can be equated to God the Son in humble submission. Just as the Son is eternally subordinate to the Father, so the woman is to be eternally subordinate to the man.

For this reason, the Council of Biblical Manhood and Womanhood proposes that God’s unchanging ideal is the permanent subordination of women.

Their teaching is in error, and it contradicts the teaching of the New Testament.

The New Testament teaches that followers of Jesus Christ – regardless of gender – are to submit “one to another” (Ephesians 5:21). It is as natural in a Christian home for a man to submit to his wife in selfless, humble service as it is for the woman to submit to her husband in selfless, humble service. In fact, the great leaders in the Kingdom – male and female – are those who are servants to all (Matthew 5:27).

There is no denying the physical differences between men and women, but to base the spiritual or emotional “subordination” of women to men on the alleged eternal subordination of the Son to God the Father borders on an Arian view of the nature of Christ.

The very word “ordination means “to order by virtue of superior authority.”

To say Christ is “subordinate” to the Father means he has lesser (sub) authority, lesser (sub) superiority, lesser (sub) ordination.

There is a great deal that will be said in the Southern Baptist Convention and the evangelical world as a whole in the coming months and years about the role of women in society, the church, and the home. Sadly, there is a tendency for those who hold to the hierarchical view of a man’s authority over women to label those who disagree with them as liberal.

But it seems to me that some Southern Baptists follow Arian’s teachings more than Christ’s teachings.

A Southern Baptist leader has refused to let a woman teach Hebrew to men because of her lesser “spiritual authority” Southern Baptist male trustees conspired to remove a woman from a supervisor’s position in the International Mission Board because she was violating her God-given role of “receiving orders” and was sinfully “giving orders. Southern Baptist pastors will advocate that women staying out of the workforce because their role is to be subordinate to men in society.  In fact, some will go as far as to say any society where “women rule” is an evil, wicked society. To these Southern Baptist Arians, women are “the lesser” regarding “authority” when compared to men, and anyone who dares disagree with them is considered a “liberal” Christian or a pagan.

It’s time for conservative, evangelical Bible-believing Christians who believe in the equality of men and women to realize that the great error in this debate is not a denial of the sufficiency, the authority, and the infallibility of God’s Word by those who hold to gender equality.

Rather, the great error in this modern debate is the promotion of semi-Arianism – and a denial of Christ’s clear teaching in the New Covenant – by those who wish to force their hierarchical views of male authority upon the church, the home, and society.

Peter Schemm, a member of the Council for Biblical Manhood and Womanhood, argues that there is room within Christian orthodoxy for the belief in “the eternal subordination of Christ.” He argues that people like Giles (and me) who oppose “eternal subordination” and view it as semi-Arianism are simply speaking too harshly for “there is room for both views within evangelicalism.”

It is ironic that those who have an affinity for calling themselves conservativeevangelicals and label “liberal” those who disagree with them are now proposing tolerance and acceptance of their unique views of the Trinity.

We should accept our brothers (and a few sisters) in Christ who are arguing for “eternal subordination,” and we should always treat them with Christian love and respect, but we should never shy away from unchallenging their unorthodox views of the Trinity.

Arius lost the debate in 325 AD, and I predict semi-Arianism will eventually be on the losing side of this current debate.


Comments

The Biblical Basis for Believing Men and Woman are ALWAYS EQUAL – Wade Burleson — 187 Comments

  1. And I thought Nicea was a quick way to say “Nice to see ya” and was an official greeting for attendees of the council of Nice-to-see-ya.

    Excellent article.

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  2. I’m almost through reading Giles’ book on the Rise and Fall of Complentarianism.

    My understanding is that in 2016 Grudem admitted that ESS was an incorrect teaching. I don’t know that his Systematic Theology book has been updated though and very little has been said about it since he made this statement.
    I believe Giles addresses this in his book.

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  3. Jen:
    My understanding is that in 2016 Grudemadmitted that ESS was an incorrect teaching.I don’t know that his Systematic Theology book has been updated though and very little has been said about it since he made this statement.

    It is still being taught at SBTS by Bruce Ware and at MWBTS by his son-in-law Owen Strachan. That means many potential pastors are still being indoctrinated by it and will likely take it to their churches.

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  4. THIS IS A COMPLETE AND HONEST QUESTION. Please don’t shoot me in the face with both barrels.

    Only to the fact when this is brought up 1 Timothy 2:12 gets thrown at me. I would love to see Wades Burleson’s view on this. Does anyone know where he might addressed this (and I’m sure he does)?

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  5. The Biblical Basis for Believing Men and Woman are ALWAYS EQUAL

    I understand and appreciate the point of this post which I will read in a moment, however I don’t need a biblical basis for believing men and women are equal. If I did, my go to would be Galatians. All of us are one in Christ. Why make it complicated?

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  6. Victorious,

    Thanks for sharing that link. This was a powerful conclusion from that article:

    In early 1974 I was preparing for a doctoral field exam in American church history by reading selections from some of the more important primary source documents representative of that history. When I came to the early and mid-nineteenth century, I was immersed in the literature surrounding the questions of slavery and abolition. The defenses of slavery by leading theologians and churchmen from the southern states were especially fascinating. Whether the men were from the Baptist, Presbyterian, Episcopal, Congregational, or Roman Catholic traditions, the biblical and theological arguments in defense of slavery were essentially the same.

    Abolitionism was said to be anti-Christian. Defenders of slavery claimed that abolitionists got their ideas from other sources and then went to the “Bible to confirm the crotchets of their vain philosophy.” Scripture, it was repeatedly argued, does not condemn slavery. In fact, scripture sanctions slavery. In his parables, Jesus refers to masters and slaves without condemning slavery as such. In the New Testament, pious and good men had slaves, and were not told to release them. The church was first organized in the home of a slaveholder. That slavery was divinely regulated throughout biblical history was evidence that the institution was divinely approved. When scripture, as in Galatians 4, uses illustrations from slavery to teach great truths, without censuring slavery, it was considered more evidence that the institution had divine approval. The Baptist Declaration of 1822 did accept that slaves had purely spiritual privileges [as Christians], but they remained slaves.

    The defenders of slavery within the churches all claimed the Bible as their starting point and all developed their defense by appealing to scripture in much the fashion I have summarized above. With one voice southern churchmen defending slavery charged that to reject slavery as sinful was to reject the Word of God. (14.)

    I had heard about this line of reasoning before, but to actually read it for myself was an eye-opening experience. I was appalled and embarrassed that such an evil practice had been defended in the name of God and under the guise of biblical authority. How could churchmen and leading theologians have been so foolish and blind? I had been reflecting on these readings several days, then on one, cold, Chicago-gray wintry day as I crept home on that parking lot known as the Eisenhower Expressway, it slowly began to dawn on me that I had heard every one of those arguments before. In fact, at one time I had used them–to defend hierarchicalism and argue against egalitarianism. By this time I was close to home and I still remember the exact spot on Manchester Road just west of downtown Wheaton, Illinois where it hit me like a flash. Someday Christians will be as embarrassed by the church’s biblical defense of patriarchal hierarchicalism as it is now of the nineteenth century biblical defenses of slavery.

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  7. A.Stacy: 1 Timothy 2:12

    Another thing–it’s in the singular in Greek and even in many English translations. Paul abruptly switches from plural “women” in v. 8 (same in Greek) to a singular woman in verse 12.

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  8. “My understanding is that in 2016 Grudem admitted that ESS was an incorrect teaching.”

    I thought what he changed his mind on was the doctrine of eternal generation of Jesus from the Father. He was finally persuaded of his error on that point, but wouldn’t completely drop ESS.

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  9. No matter how they try to slice it, Comp theology disobeys the words of Christ in Matt 5:37. Jesus gave women the power of saying “yes” and “no” over their own lives. Then Jesus warned us that anything else “comes from the evil one.”

    Yet Comp theology refuses to allow women’s yes to be yes or their no to be no. Comp theology doesn’t allow boundaries between someone else’s wants and your needs because it allows that person to override your boundaries whenever they feel entitled to do so.

    That’s why the whole point of Egal theology is obedience to God. You can’t obey God if someone else is making your choices for you. Thus we had to let go of Comp theology in order to obey God’s command “Thou shalt have no other gods before ME!”

    Now to answer some questions…..

    The Apostle Paul actually encouraged women to teach in church. 1Tim 2:12 was where Paul forbade the teaching of false doctrine, saying that he didn’t allow a woman to teach the false doctrine that woman was the originator of man for Adam was created first then Eve. If you study the history of this verse, Paul was writing to Timothy about specific false doctrines in Ephesus. Remember the “great is Diana” riot in that city?

    In the famous “submit” verses, there’s reciprocity (mutual submission) between men and women in the actual Greek that got edited out when the Bible was translated to English.

    1Cor 11 is where Paul answered a question on whether male believers should continue the tradition of covering their heads during worship. Since this is one of the hardest passages to understand, it has been twisted into all kinds of things that Paul never wrote. But the whole point he was making was that the atonement of Christ had washed away all guilt and shame so there was no reason for men or women to cover their heads in worship. That this tradition had come from Moses who covered his head because the glory of God was so bright that it scared people. But the cloth was symbolic of separating us from the presence of God like the veil in the temple had done until Jesus atonement on the cross ripped that veil apart. Now we can boldly approach the throne of God.

    There’s a lot more on this if you are interested….

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  10. Jen,

    Actually, I believe it is the case that Grudem changed his mind on the eternal generation of the Son while still affirming ESS. He says it is necessary to avoid modalism, which is odd because the early church did not think they had to affirm it to refute that error and there’s lots of evidence they opposed the ancient equivalent of ESS as semi-Arianism.

    It’s very dangerous to read male-female roles back into the Godhead. You can believe women that God does not permit women to be pastors and deny ESS.

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  11. Deb: Someday Christians will be as embarrassed by the church’s biblical defense of patriarchal hierarchicalism as it is now of the nineteenth century biblical defenses of slavery.

    Wondered if the aggrieved entitled slave owners lost their underlings with Civil Rights, so they then switched their focus to having their wife as a type of slave. If that is why Patriarchy is more a SBC thing or the SBC is the hold-out with hardline complementarianism. Just a thought.

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  12. Deb: Abolitionism was said to be anti-Christian. Defenders of slavery claimed that abolitionists got their ideas from other sources and then went to the “Bible to confirm the crotchets of their vain philosophy.” Scripture, it was repeatedly argued, does not condemn slavery.

    This is fantastic and why I no longer care if anyone spits anti-women bible verses at me. They aren’t listening to me or my arguments. I’m just a woman. I’m now in a ‘liberal’ church. I’m not ‘biblical’.

    I’m at the ‘stuff it’ point, honestly.

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  13. Thing I notice with most people who believe they know what the Bible says is that they always start with a presupposition about most passages. For many heavy comps, that is “Men have to be in charge”. And many English translations have even been translated with that bias.

    Some of them, such as Ephesians 5, can’t really be taken the way they are by comps if they were accurately translated, while others, like 1 Timothy 2, could have multiple interpretations. And many of those things haven’t even been studied by the people who claim to take them a certain way, they’ve just accepted somebody else’s interpretation.

    I never trust anyone who thinks they know absolutely what the Bible says because they’ve stopped seeking God on who He is.

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  14. jyjames,

    Interesting question, the answer is rather complicated.

    Women already had the legal status of children, meaning that they didn’t have the final say over their own property, wages, bank account etc. There were many heartbreaking situations where the husband would die, the property would pass to the son, and the wife would be powerless as her son blew through the family finances and sold her own home. Things had been like that for a long time in America until the women’s suffrage movement was born out of the abolitionist movement. Christians were leading the charge on this. The original feminist movement in America was started by Christian women like Lucretia Mott and Sarah Grimke who found their freedom in Christ Jesus and challenged the status quo. Grimke’s writings are the root of modern American feminist thought. She argued for things like equal wages and women owning property, etc. (Note: Bible verses about women being able to inherit property was a big lightbulb moment for them too.)

    Now to answer your other question, after slavery was abolished in America, many slave owners actually left America to move to other parts of the world like Cuba where it was still legal. That’s how stubborn they were. They would never let go of their entitlement mentality.

    Of course there’s a lot more to the story. There’s so many inspiring people who risked everything to stand against evil. One early civil rights leader in America was David Walker. He wrote the book Appeal as a rebuttal to Thomas Jefferson’s prosalvery arguments. Walker made the point that no one can serve two masters. So he made the case from the Bible that it was the Christian duty of slaves to rebel against their masters. According to history, he died of natural causes. My gut feeling is that he was murdered for writing that book. It’s just too suspicious that he suddenly passed after writing something that caused such a stir. There’s so many fascinating stories in history if we take the time to look.

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  15. Robert,

    “You can believe women that God does not permit women to be pastors and deny ESS.”
    ++++++++++++++++

    but you can’t truly be a champion of equality. not really.

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  16. It’s interesting what we “know” to be true by our culture and “what has always been true”. I grew up in churches that were generally mildly complementarian. No female pastors, but marriage was generally held to be a partnership. So that’s what I thought the Bible taught. And that’s what I read in the Bible. Until I learned to really read each passage in the context of it’s time, original author, and original audience. Wow. That opened my eyes. And now I have a much richer picture of how God wants us to relate to each other.

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  17. These dysfunctions always seem to point back to authority. Who’s got the power?

    I’ve not heard any “preaching” on the Trinity in years. It seems that many pastors avoid the subject. It IS challenging, and it’s easy to make errors. And you need to know your history to understand what the early church fathers worked out. But avoiding it leaves a vacuum. And heresy can fill that vacuum very quickly.

    I recall James White saying that if you took a survey of typical American Christians as they left church, most would test as tri-theists. It’s what we’ve been taught, really.

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  18. Catherine Martin: It’s interesting what we “know” to be true by our culture and “what has always been true”. I grew up in churches that were generally mildly complementarian. No female pastors, but marriage was generally held to be a partnership. So that’s what I thought the Bible taught. And that’s what I read in the Bible.

    It is really true isn’t it? We see what we have always seen. Until we see something else.

    I was never taught any of this business about women being lesser, except at church. Not allowed to be pastors, and ‘the husband gets the tie breaker’ was still the extent of it (although there were a few harmful biblical narratives about women that got absorbed a bit). I have rejected this stuff as an adult and when I look at the bible I see different things.

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  19. as i was monitoring the ETS 2016 in San Antonio from afar, it seemed to me that ESS, the other acronyms it hides under, and bruce ware and wayne grudem themselves were roundly trounced.

    but it seems to me (who observes at a distance), that SBC entities are in some ways playing pretend. either pretending the debates never happened & continue with their silly claims. or else pretending they never made their silly claims in the first place (CBMW).

    i observed striking silence from them after ETS 2016. pretending it never happened.

    and it seems people just go along with it.

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  20. Catherine Martin,

    Also the more I think about it, and reading the story linked above about one mans journey to egal thought…I wonder if many men just never saw any reason to look beyond the givens they were raised with on women in ministry and in marriage. I think women, as the ones being restricted, have plenty of reasons to think deeply on this topic. When you start running into obstacles, you need to examine them. Hm.

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  21. For those that are interested in history, here’s a quote from David Walkers book.

    Context: he’s shredding Thomas Jefferson’s proslavery arguments in the book Notes in Virginia which ironically reminded me of the same arguments used to justify Comp theology.

    Here’s Walker

    “Are we men!!—I ask you, O my brethren! are we MEN? Did our creator make us to be slaves to dust and ashes like ourselves?

    Have they not to make their appearance before the tribunal of heaven, to answer for the deeds done in the body, as well as we? Have we any other master but Jesus Christ alone? Is he not their master as well as ours?—What right then, have we to obey and call any other master, but Himself?”

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  22. Jen: My understanding is that in 2016 Grudem admitted that ESS was an incorrect teaching. I don’t know that his Systematic Theology book has been updated though and very little has been said about it since he made this statement.

    The version of Grudem’s Systematic Theology available on Amazon was published in 1994 with a paperback edition in 2000 with a glossary. There doesn’t appear to have been any update since then. A cursory view of the book indicates Grudem pushes subordinationism starting around page 251-252 in the hardcover book.

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  23. elastigirl:
    but it seems to me (who observes at a distance), that SBC entities are in some ways playing pretend.either pretending the debates never happened & continue with their silly claims.or else pretending they never made their silly claims in the first place (CBMW).

    They are long-game players. And they are still teaching ESS. Just like they slowly put all their people in power to take over all the SBC institutions, I believe they are trying to indoctrinate as many as possible through the seminaries so that they will one day have a lot more support for ESS. And then they’ll “switch back” even though they were secretly supporting it all along.

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  24. Lea: I’m now in a ‘liberal’ church. I’m not ‘biblical’.

    I’m at the ‘stuff it’ point, honestly.

    Well, it just points out that you probably don’t know The Lord, and quite possibly never really saved in the first place.

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  25. ishy: I believe they are trying to indoctrinate as many as possible through the seminaries so that they will one day have a lot more support for ESS. And then they’ll “switch back” even though they were secretly supporting it all along.

    I suspect you’re right.

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  26. Women’s subordination to men, according to the teachings of CBMW, is established because it reflects the truth of Trinity. Women will always be subordinate to men and wives will always be subordinate to husbands because Jesus is eternally subordinate to the Father.

    It’s the latest incarnation of The Great Chain of Being — a Caste System of Heirarchy, boots stamping on faces all the way down.

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  27. ishy: They are long-game players. And they are still teaching ESS. Just like they slowly put all their people in power to take over all the SBC institutions, I believe they are trying to indoctrinate as many as possible through the seminaries so that they will one day have a lot more support for ESS. And then they’ll “switch back” even though they were secretly supporting it all along.

    “Salami Tactics”, like Stalin used to take over Eastern Europe in the aftermath of WW2.

    Like “Slow Boiling Frog”…
    Just one teensy-weensy bite after one teensy-weensy bite after one teensy-weensy bite, until one day you wake up to find the Bear has eaten it all and is starting on YOU.
    And it’s all over but the screaming.

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  28. Headless Unicorn Guy,
    P.S. Talking about “long game players”, my NPD/Sociopath brother spent over TEN YEARS setting up and grooming third parties for a revenge smackdown on our stepmother. TEN YEARS of chess move after chess move setting up the airtight trap, which he sprung at his own wedding. “I. WIN.”

    How can anyone compete with someone setting up and grooming TEN YEARS in advance?
    TEN YEARS of nothing except the total unsmiling sleepless concentration on setting up The Plan?
    No wonder their kind always win.

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  29. Lea: Also the more I think about it, and reading the story linked above about one mans journey to egal thought…I wonder if many men just never saw any reason to look beyond the givens they were raised with on women in ministry and in marriage

    AKA “The System Works Just Fine (for Me)”?

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  30. elastigirl: but it seems to me (who observes at a distance), that SBC entities are in some ways playing pretend. either pretending the debates never happened & continue with their silly claims. or else pretending they never made their silly claims in the first place (CBMW).

    “I Reject YOUR Reality and Substitute My Own!”
    — Intro to Mythbusters (though there it was said as a joke — these guys are DEAD Serious)

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  31. Avid Reader,

    To add on to some of your thoughts here, there was a time in American history when the abolitionist and women’s rights movements were basically one and the same, with many Christian women and men involved in both issues.

    This is something I explored in the book *Ahead of Her Time: Abby Kelley and the Politics of Antislavery* by Dorothy Sterling. This important biography explores the period when these movements were still united, and it traces when, why, and how they separated around the time of the 1848 Seneca Falls convention on women’s rights.

    https://www.amazon.com/Ahead-Her-Time-Politics-Antislavery/dp/0393030261/

    It is also intriguing to track the involvement of Quakers in both abolition and women’s rights, and later on in the civil rights movement. For instance, from age 11 to 11th grade, Rosa Parks attended a Quaker school with white teachers who treated students equally regardless of race.

    How is it that such spiritual “quietism” of the Quakers leads to such social activism? And how oriented to social justice are those theologies with a patriarchal view of gender roles — is their cultural engagement ever more than colonization and dominionism? A relevant set of questions on how our theology impacts our ministry …

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  32. Some Southern Baptists, like Paige Patterson, Al Mohler, and Wayne Grudem, believe and teach that the man is equated to God the Father in hierarchical authority. The woman can be equated to God the Son in humble submission. Just as the Son is eternally subordinate to the Father, so the woman is to be eternally subordinate to the man.

    Note what Paige Patterson, Al Mohler, and Wayne Grudem Go Wayne Grudem have dangling between their legs.

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  33. Headless Unicorn Guy: AKA “The System Works Just Fine (for Me)”?

    Yes, that.

    But also, as far as marriage is concerned, I have long been thinking that men and women in marriages where the husband and wife really do respect each other and are ‘functionally egalitarian’ do not SEE the troubles in complementarian thinking as quickly because they are practicing the best version of it. If the husband treats his wife well, with respect and kindness, listens to her, and she treats him likewise, and they make decisions together, they will not see the ill effects of these systems.

    (A huge problem, of course, is that when things go wrong, there is no recovery path other than try harder.)

    We all need to get out of our heads and try to see what is happening with others even if it is contrary to our own experiences. This happening in the area of race as well.

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  34. I do not see that the doctrine of the Trinity as currently understood is specifically spelled out in scripture, but I do see where it was debated in the early centuries of christianity. And there were winners and losers way back in the early times. That is not to say that there are no good arguments to be made from scripture, but just to say that not everybody got on board with the details early on.

    Not everybody even now agrees with the details, at least not in practice if one listens to the vocabulary and usages when people speak of the Persons of the Trinity.

    Do not expect the issue to go away, especially now that the issues of the other Abrahamic religions are coming to the fore in the secular world and more people here in the US are converting to Islam for example. And the LDS seem to be having some increased influence also.

    It seems odd to me that southern baptists would now come along and quote the church fathers and the early creeds after ignoring fathers and creeds for so long. In my youth the very idea that church fathers and creeds would be important was denounced as catholicism and therefore wrong. That kind of red flags something or other for me, but I am not sure what all is going on in that area.

    The way I see it the issue boils down to whether or not the church (either way back then/ or now/ or both) has the authority to make definitive statements concerning belief and practice. Either answer to that, either ‘yes’ or ‘no’ has its own problems.

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  35. ishy: “I believe they are trying to indoctrinate as many as possible through the seminaries so that they will one day have a lot more support for ESS. And then they’ll “switch back” even though they were secretly supporting it all along.”

    +++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++

    but…. aren’t they merely digging a bunker for themselves? my impression is that as theologians go, they are standing alone.

    certainly culturally they are standing alone in the corner with a dunce cap on their heads.

    And as far as women being empowered to be 100% human & force to be reckoned with, the genie is out of the bottle. i only see this spreading as ‘normal’ because it’s right.

    because societies benefit when women have economic power, because everyone benefits when expertise and talent are freely exercised, and because survival of the fittest seems to happen (in context: ideas, behavior), i don’t see this trend going backward.

    it is life-giving to the human race and all the earth itself.

    the SBC may see ESS, golden ticket to subjugation of women, as a viable way forward,…. all i see is self-induced shrinking ‘remnanthood’ (they’d call it faithful, of course).

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  36. Lea,

    Yes, FUNCTIONAL egalitarians THINK they are living out complementarianism and hence call it good. A day in the life of a FUNCTIONAL COMPLEMENTARIAN would shake it up quickly.

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  37. okrapod: The way I see it the issue boils down to whether or not the church (either way back then/ or now/ or both) has the authority to make definitive statements concerning belief and practice. Either answer to that, either ‘yes’ or ‘no’ has its own problems.

    This really is the key question. If we say no, then we have to throw out the New Testament because it was the early church that decided which books to include and which to reject – the same church that hammered out the early creeds. If we accept the NT, then by what basis can we reject other teachings and practices handed down by the early church? As far as I can tell the church has always been messy and always will be. Maybe that is our real challenge – embracing messiness.

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  38. I think I’ll start putting this in my repertoire … are you a complementation by DOCTRINE but an egalitarian by FUNCTION? If so, you are double-minded at best and hypocritical at worst. (Deebs, there’s an article for you!)

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  39. “A Resurging Semi-Arianism in the Southern Baptist Convention”

    IMO, the New Calvinist movement has moved this needle to full-fledged Arianism! Arianism is heresy. Is it possible to hold to Semi-Arianism and be only a semi-heretic?! Within New Calvinism, there is little emphasis on the teaching and ministry of Jesus, while “God” gets all the publicity … and the Holy Spirit is hardly mentioned. The Eternal Subordination of the Son doctrine promoted by the New Calvinists puts the Son as a creature distinct from the Father and, therefore, subordinate to Him. Likewise, Complementarian doctrine places women as derivative creatures of men and, therefore, subordinate to them. There are other disturbing beliefs and practices contrary to the free church of Jesus Christ, elder-rule being one. When you redefine the Trinity, strip divinity from Christ, subordinate some of the children of God, and use a heavy hand to control and manipulate all of them, you are standing on shaky ground with the Father. We need to start using the “H” word to describe this movement … Heresy!

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  40. elastigirl: +++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++
    the SBC may see ESS, golden ticket to subjugation of women, as a viable way forward,…. all i see is self-induced shrinking ‘remnanthood’ (they’d call it faithful, of course).

    No, I agree, which is why I think they have been getting increasingly militant about comp doctrine. I think they are desperate. And right now, playing the long game seems like it has worked for them, but I don’t think they can win against the whole country.

    I don’t think many of these men can’t fathom a universe where they are not in charge. Not just of women, but of everyone around them. Of course, they’ve never really had the power most of them imagine they have. They just desperately want to believe they do.

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  41. Ken F (aka Tweed): If we say no, then we have to throw out the New Testament because it was the early church that decided which books to include and which to reject

    Disagree. For one, protestants don’t include the same books as the early church/catholics.

    For two, we can disagree on some things, without disagreeing on all things.

    Yes, the early church was messy. The middle church was messy. The current church is messy. People are messy!

    I think the key through is accepting this, and accepting disagreement on something, while still loving the people we disagree with. Of course, we have to draw lines and we’re always going to draw them in different places. Political compromises and choices (which is what all of those early councils were really, a lot of politics) don’t mean the lines are always correct though.

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  42. elastigirl: my impression is that as theologians go, they are standing alone

    Classical Calvinism represents less than 10% of Christendom worldwide, while “New” Calvinism represents only a fraction of that. Calvinists have had 500 years to convince the rest of us that their theology is absolute Truth and we all need to fall in line with them. So, yes, essentially the New Calvinists are standing alone with their aberrant belief and practice. Their theologians, from Calvin to Grudem, have been viewed as “out there.” Yet, the Southern Baptist Convention is sitting back quietly and letting them takeover one of the greatest soul-winning denominations the world has ever seen. It’s the darnedest thing I’ve ever seen!

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  43. ishy: I don’t think many of these men can’t fathom a universe where they are not in charge. Not just of women, but of everyone around them. Of course, they’ve never really had the power most of them imagine they have. They just desperately want to believe they do.

    It’s a magic trick. Once people in general, and women in churches that believe they are lesser, realize that they don’t have any power they aren’t given? That there is no great and powerful oz, it’s just some guy behind a pulpit? It’s over. Then comes freedom.

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  44. Lea: Disagree. For one, protestants don’t include the same books as the early church/catholics.

    Your comment only appplies to the OT. My comment was about the NT. Roman Catholics, Eastern Orthodox, and Protestants all have the same NT. The oldest list of NT books is from 367 AD, although some argue that Origen had a complete listing before then. In any case, there were others books in the list for consideration that did not make it. And some of the books in the NT almost did not make it. It was a messy process.

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  45. I’ve got no problem with Wade’s view on the equality of men and women. I believe he is absolutely “spot on” on that point and I wholeheartedly agree with it. However, I cannot agree with the subordination of Jesus Christ within the Trinity. The Father is God, the Son (Jesus) is God, and the Holy Spirit is God. This doctrine is a mystery of which its details is known only to the Triune God. When we begin to place one person of God above another, we delve into dangerous theological territory.

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  46. Ken F (aka Tweed): Your comment only appplies to the OT. My comment was about the NT.

    I don’t see the relevance of this difference as far as your conclusions go, which was my point, but regardless.

    I do agree with you it was messy.

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  47. Lea: For one, protestants don’t include the same books as the early church/catholics.

    The Catholic church does not include all the early ‘gospels’ either much less many other writings. So now comes decision time: who is correct? The early church before the church established canonicity? or the church over the time period when it did establish what is canon and what is not (?), or the churches of the reformation era(?).

    And how does one decide on that? Other sources? Personal opinion? The current beliefs with which one is familiar? Or look at how the decisions were made at the various times and see what seems probable? Or check for majority opinion perhaps? I am serious. When one decides something there ought to be criteria for the decision.

    But I do agree with you that we don’t all have to agree with each other on everything. But if that is the case, then Ken F (aka tweed) is just as potentially correct in saying what he is saying as someone who differs from him would be potentially correct in what they say; operative word potentially.

    I am not too comfortable with too much lee way in how opposite opinions can be and still be within the limits of potentially true, but certainly there is room for disagreement on some things.

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  48. Lea: I don’t see the relevance of this difference as far as your conclusions go, which was my point, but regardless.

    My point was the standard by which we accept/reject early church teaching/tradition? By what standard can we claim they got the NT right but most everything else wrong? If we accept that they got the NT right, should we not also believe that may have gotten other things right? If not, but what basis can we make that decision?

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  49. Ken F (aka Tweed): If we accept that they got the NT right, should we not also believe that may have gotten other things right? If not, but what basis can we make that decision?

    On the basis of other evidence, if available. Like more historical evidence, or scientific evidence, or evidence of corruption or politics affecting decisions-and so on and so forth.

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  50. elastigirl: all i see is self-induced shrinking ‘remnanthood’ (they’d call it faithful, of course)

    Yes, the New Calvinists firmly believe that small is the gate and narrow the road that leads to life, and only a few find it (only them, of course). Calvinist belief and practice is that small gate and narrow road. Everybody else – including all other expressions of Christianity – have entered through the wide gate and broad road that leads to destruction.

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  51. ishy: No, I agree, which is why I think they have been getting increasingly militant about comp doctrine. I think they are desperate. And right now, playing the long game seems like it has worked for them, but I don’t think they can win against the whole country.
    In my rural corner of the world, we are almost always 20 years behind on everything: cell phones, Internet, electricity, etc. During the past 4 years, I have witnessed obvious changes in SBC churches’ treatment of women. For example, one church (with which I am very familar) has taken away women’s right to speak at business meetings and is discussing taking away women’s rights to speak/participate in mixed-gender SS classes! I used to be a member and an SS teacher there. I will not go back there.

    One man at that church (he and his wife are near and dear or my husband and me) made a comment about a month ago that really angered me and caused my respect for him to drop. We were at their home when, out of the blue, he said that one of the biggest mistakes our country has made was allowing women to continue to be part of the workforce after WWII,
    In a way, it was almost funny, He is between 6’0″ and 6’2″, while his wife might be all of 5’1″ …… nobody, including him, messes with his wife. Love her to death, but she’s a real pistol!

    I don’t think many of these men can’t fathom a universe where they are not in charge. Not just of women, but of everyone around them. Of course, they’ve never really had the power most of them imagine they have. They just desperately want to believe they do.

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  52. Here is my comment:

    In my rural corner of the world, we are almost always 20 years behind on everything: cell phones, Internet, electricity, etc. During the past 4 years, I have witnessed obvious changes in SBC churches’ treatment of women. For example, one church (with which I am very familar) has taken away women’s right to speak at business meetings and is discussing taking away women’s rights to speak/participate in mixed-gender SS classes! I used to be a member and an SS teacher there. I will not go back there.
    One man at that church (he and his wife are near and dear or my husband and me) made a comment about a month ago that really angered me and caused my respect for him to drop. We were at their home when, out of the blue, he said that one of the biggest mistakes our country has made was allowing women to continue to be part of the workforce after WWII,
    In a way, it was almost funny, He is between 6’0″ and 6’2″, while his wife might be all of 5’1″ …… nobody, including him, messes with his wife. Love her to death, but she’s a real pistol!

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  53. I am grateful for Wade and other Evangelicals for offering clear “biblical proof” that if one is a Protestant, then all doors for women are open.

    (I only put those words in quotes because some people think that simply pointing to some verses in the Bible constitutes capital-P Proof, not because I don’t think there is such a thing – though sometimes it is difficult to ascertain. Like every other theological discussion, everything comes down to ***interpretation***.)

    Somehow, I had figured out sometime in the early 2000s that ESS was pretty much the same as Arianism. I had an opportunity to have coffee with Scot McKnight at a conference then, who confirmed my conclusion.

    One thing that I find interesting about Wade’s post is that he calls the attendees of the Council of Nicea “pastors”. However, their title was episkopos/episkopi, which is where we get our words bishop/bishops. I suppose functionally they were quite pastoral, but the reason they were called to council was that they were recognized as having overseer-type authority in their locales (episkopos means “overseer”) and were qualified (some by having been tortured for their faith during the last great persecution) to make the type of decision that would affect the whole church.

    Remember that there was just one fairly functional Christianity up until about the 900s, which also included Christians in Egypt, the Levant, Persia, and of course other areas ruled from Constantinople, and even on the west coast of India, who were not in the purview of the bishop of Rome. There was no discernible “Roman Catholic Church” until after that, right before the Schism. It is not in keeping with actual history to claim the clerics with the fish hats swept in with Constantine and somehow wiped out “biblical/primitive” Christianity. (No, I’m not Roman Catholic, but I am frustrated with so many sincere, intelligent and well-meaning Christians who neglect to study Christian history.)

    Ken F is right that the compiling of the canon was a messy process. What we know as the NT consists of writings that the bishops of the Church in the 400s considered to have been ***the most consistently in use in the worship services,*** along with having a pedigree of composition by the apostles/their near associates. They were the writings that Justin Martyr (c. 150 AD) already referred to as “the memoirs of the apostles”. As for the OT, the Eastern Orthodox are the most inclusive, and use the Septuagint, which has a much older textual tradition than the Masoretic (source of most contemporary translations), and which was the version used for nearly all the quotes of the OT found in NT writings.

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  54. Nancy2 (aka Kevlar): For example, one church (with which I am very familar) has taken away women’s right to speak at business meetings and is discussing taking away women’s rights to speak/participate in mixed-gender SS classes!

    I cannot imagine staying at a church that did anything like this.

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  55. Lea,

    When we stand before the Judgement seat, when we stand before the Bema seat, we will not be judged or rewarded on the basis of gender. Why should we be judged on the basis of gender in this world?

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  56. Max, it may be the cynic in me, but I suspect lifeway had sold just about all the dispensational books and teaching materials it could. Market was saturated. So now we all need to just throw them all out and go buy the new theology of the day stuff, aka Calvinism. But just watch: younger folks now gobbling it up hook line and sinker (and 50 plus may be a lot of things but not YOUNG restless and reformed) but in 20 to 25 years, or sooner if the market hits saturation, the SBC will be taken in by yet another distortion of the message JUST TO SELL BOOKS.

    It wasn’t that long ago only those judged “ready” could study the MasterLife program. Then, only those judged really ready to “go deeper” could be offered Experiencing God. Cream of the crop might make it into those closed Mind of Christ classes. Now I guess that is all bunk and only the highly intelligent can “get” the puritanical Calvinism being offered. Which selectivity makes everyone want to be in the “in” group, right.

    All marketing. All nickels and noses, butts and bucks.

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  57. Max: Calvinists have had 500 years to convince the rest of us that their theology is absolute Truth and we all need to fall in line with them. So, yes, essentially the New Calvinists are standing alone with their aberrant belief and practice.

    AKA “Everybody’s out-of-step except My Little Jeannie”?

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  58. ishy: No, I agree, which is why I think they have been getting increasingly militant about comp doctrine. I think they are desperate.

    The most dangerous animal is one that’s wounded and cornered.

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  59. Max: The Eternal Subordination of the Son doctrine promoted by the New Calvinists puts the Son as a creature distinct from the Father and, therefore, subordinate to Him.

    JUST LIKE THE JEHOVAH’S WITNESSES!

    Come to think about it, how do the JWs treat their women?

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  60. okrapod: It seems odd to me that southern baptists would now come along and quote the church fathers and the early creeds after ignoring fathers and creeds for so long. In my youth the very idea that church fathers and creeds would be important was denounced as catholicism and therefore wrong. That kind of red flags something or other for me, but I am not sure what all is going on in that area.

    Simple.
    They’ve found Church Fathers and Early Creeds that Agree with THEM.

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  61. Nancy2 (aka Kevlar): During the past 4 years, I have witnessed obvious changes in SBC churches’ treatment of women. For example, one church (with which I am very familar) has taken away women’s right to speak at business meetings and is discussing taking away women’s rights to speak/participate in mixed-gender SS classes! I used to be a member and an SS teacher there. I will not go back there.

    There is clearly a growing trend in SBC ranks of authoritarian patriarchal rule. Some say it is a direct result of the Conservative Resurgence of ole boys always wanting to treat women that way. But when I see young men exhibiting this archaic behavior in local SBC-YRR church plants, I know the Calvinist Resurgence is equally to blame.

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  62. ESS is not merely heterodox, it is outright heresy. Kevin Giles is an Athanasias – he courageously battles against the powerful Grudem cabal whose influence is huge through the ESV translation of the Bible and Grudem’s Systematic Theology. ESS is a pernicious doctrine which demeans our Saviour and, as Wade Burleson so clearly points out, leads to Arianism, which Athanasias fought with all his might.
    Furthemore, I do not extend any olive branch to Grudem, Piper, Mohler, Ware or Strachan, nor to Pressler and Patterson, until they repent of their dangerous and destructive attitude to women, which is all part and parcel of their ideologies. However much they disagree on some topics, they all join together in their patriarchal, power-hungry, authoritarianism.

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  63. Headless Unicorn Guy: how do the JWs treat their women?

    “Jehovah’s Witnesses are a patriarchal society where women are to view men as their head and only men can hold positions of responsibility and teaching in the congregation. The head of a wife is her husband, and the spiritual head of a “sister” is a “brother”. A female Witness is not to pray in front of a male Witness and must wear a head covering in order to pray in front of an unbaptised man or conduct a meeting in front of other sisters. This is one of the more unusual Watchtower practices, particularly as the covering of choice is often a tea towel or paper napkin. A 1930 Golden Age even claimed they may turn into men in the New System.

    Although speaking against domestic violence, Watchtower articles praise women for staying with husbands despite violent abuse, and Witnesses are encouraged to stay with violent husbands except in extreme, life-threatening situations.”

    https://www.jwfacts.com/watchtower/quotes/women-submission.php

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  64. dainca: It is not in keeping with actual history to claim the clerics with the fish hats swept in with Constantine and somehow wiped out “biblical/primitive” Christianity. (No, I’m not Roman Catholic, but I am frustrated with so many sincere, intelligent and well-meaning Christians who neglect to study Christian history.)

    There are some who say that. But on the other hand there had been arguments about doctrines for some time and the councils did establish what they declared to be orthodox or not, and the emperor did have a finger in the pie. I am thinking that the reality lies somewhere between the two extremes.

    There also had been earlier ‘lost christianities’ as Ehrman calls them which held various positions and who left or dwindled or became something else rather early on. But not everybody instantly went with the statements of the councils, apparently because some rather extensive missionary work had already been done teaching Arianism in various places and it took some time to weed that out. So, yes, I can thoroughly see some reasons why people would think differently about Nicea at least, given the political aspect and not just the theological aspect.

    https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Arianism

    And, yes, they were bishops, but not all the available bishops were in attendance.

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  65. Headless Unicorn Guy,

    Max,

    Jehovah Witnesses paid my daughter a visit about 3 weeks ago. She told them to leave and not to come back. Two days later, they were back again. My daughter said, “I told you not to come back here, yet here you are again. If you set foot on my property again, I’m going to turn the dogs loose and enjoy the show.” They haven’t been back.
    That’s my girl! Don’t mess with her!

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  66. Nancy2 (aka Kevlar),

    JW’s get extra points if they convert folks like your daughter. 🙂

    I’ve found that they just don’t know what to do or say when you start sharing anything about a personal relationship with Jesus. The young ones who tag along as trainees actually listen intently before the adults tell them to get back to the car. Bondage.

    By the way, the Bible you use most likely translates John 1:1 as “In the beginning was the Word, and the Word was with God, and the Word was God.” But the Jehovah’s Witness’ New World Translation renders the verse this way: “In the beginning the Word was, and the Word was with God, and the Word was a god.” “A” God, not God. Thus, the New Calvinists are not the only ones that twist Scripture to make it fit their theology.

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  67. brad/futuristguy: How is it that such spiritual “quietism” of the Quakers leads to such social activism?

    Well the Quakers had to be pushed into abolitionism, because they weren’t naturally so. Benjamin Lay, an English Quaker who emigrated to Pennsylvania in the early 1700s, was a public scandal in pursuit of abolitionism. In 1738 he went to a major Quaker meeting dressed as a soldier, gave a speech about abolition of slavery, and at the end, he plunged his sword into his Bible and what looked like blood flowed out and splashed the people around him. (It was pokeberry juice.) Lay was also a vegan and insisted on wearing clothes of his own make. He was not much liked by that generation of Quakers, but he influenced John Woolman, who most of us probably heard of as an early Quaker abolitionist.

    https://en.m.wikipedia.org/wiki/Benjamin_Lay

    So even Quakers had to be brought to understanding the wrongness of chattel slavery.

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  68. @linda I always say to follow the money if you want to understand what’s really happening in these markets. I hope folks think as hard about what you’re saying as they do about the headier issues.

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  69. Max,

    We have JWs in this area. My mom and I have both worked with some. I have had 3 incidents with JWs. The first time, I was a teenager and they were visiting my parents, I got my Bible and argued with them …. proved them wrong.

    The 2nd time was about 15 years ago……… Well, it went like this: Hubby and I had 3 large dogs, 80 lbs, 103 lbs, and 110 lbs. I was strapping on my holster, getting ready to take the dogs for a walk down in the woods when the JWs pulled in the driveway. I stepped out with the dogs and the holster to discover that my dad’s 2300 lb Charlois bull was loose at the end of our driveway. Well, Big Charlie saw his reflection in the back window of the JWs van and started pawing and snorting. And there we stood. The bull, the van, 3 big dawgs, and me with lace up boots and a holster. The driver of the van cracked the door and told me they were JWs. I said, “Well, that’s not my bull, and y’all might oughta get out of here….. fast.” They circled the drive and left. Lucky for them we have a driveway that circles!

    3rd time, 10 years ago: they got out of the car. The lady (one that worked with my mom) says, “oh you are so-and-so’s daughter.” I said “yes ma’am, I am.” She said, “there’s no point in talking to you, is there?” I said, ” no ma’am. There surely isn’t.” None have been back.

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  70. Max: I’ve found that they just don’t know what to do or say when you start sharing anything about a personal relationship with Jesus.

    hmmm….I’ve not had that experience with the couple who have visited me on a regular basis for nearly a year now. We have thoroughly enjoyed our time together and focus on the things we have in common, i.e. Jesus as our Savior. One woman in particular visited me today and gave me her cell phone # and home phone # and asked if we could meet next time at my convenience for a little longer time of about 1/2 hr. as she is very interested in some of the things I said.

    I really like her and there seems to have developed a very nice friendship.

    I have not found any to be confrontational.

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  71. okrapod: On the basis of other evidence, if available. Like more historical evidence, or scientific evidence, or evidence of corruption or politics affecting decisions-and so on and so forth.

    I agree with this. I see a belief among some protestants that the church fell into a great apostasy not long after all the original disciples died, so we can only trust in the perfect and inerrent Bible, and we cannot trust the traditions not captured in the NT. But the NT was assembled and preserved by the very apostates that these folks don’t trust. This makes no sense to me – by what standard do they elevate one and denigrate the other? It seems much more likely that the truth is more in the middle somewhere and we will probably not be able to know it with certainty.

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  72. Max: “Jehovah’s Witnesses are a patriarchal society where women are to view men as their head and only men can hold positions of responsibility and teaching in the congregation. The head of a wife is her husband, and the spiritual head of a “sister” is a “brother”. A female Witness is not to pray in front of a male Witness and must wear a head covering in order to pray in front of an unbaptised man or conduct a meeting in front of other sisters. This is one of the more unusual Watchtower practices, particularly as the covering of choice is often a tea towel or paper napkin. A 1930 Golden Age even claimed they may turn into men in the New System.
    Although speaking against domestic violence, Watchtower articles praise women for staying with husbands despite violent abuse, and Witnesses are encouraged to stay with violent husbands except in extreme, life-threatening situations.”

    So what’s the diff between JWs and the CBMW?
    Or between whoever’s running the JWs today and “Paige Patterson, Wayne Grudem, Bruce Ware, Al Mohler, and the Pearls?”

    Oh, I forgot. It’s CORRECT THEOLOGY, NOT What You Do to the Least of These, which determines whether you’re Real True Christians or CULT CULT CULT.

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  73. linda: Max, it may be the cynic in me, but I suspect lifeway had sold just about all the dispensational books and teaching materials it could. Market was saturated. So now we all need to just throw them all out and go buy the new theology of the day stuff, aka Calvinism. But just watch: younger folks now gobbling it up hook line and sinker (and 50 plus may be a lot of things but not YOUNG restless and reformed) but in 20 to 25 years, or sooner if the market hits saturation, the SBC will be taken in by yet another distortion of the message JUST TO SELL BOOKS.

    All About the Benjamins, Baby.

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  74. linda: It wasn’t that long ago only those judged “ready” could study the MasterLife program. Then, only those judged really ready to “go deeper” could be offered Experiencing God. Cream of the crop might make it into those closed Mind of Christ classes.

    The Inner Ring of Illuminati Adepts,
    the Inner Inner Ring of Illuminati,
    and the Inner Inner Inner Ring of Illuminati Masters.

    Did they have special secret handshakes, ritual responses, and blood oaths with each Degree?

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  75. Ken F (aka Tweed): This makes no sense to me –

    It makes no sense to me either. I think it makes no sense because it is not sensible, as opposed to the idea that it somehow would make sense to me if only I had more sense, or something of that sort. A more sensible approach would be to take a dim view of any sort of unquestioning absolutism since we don’t have all the information we would need in order to arrive at any such conclusion.

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  76. We had some JW’s drop by a couple of years back. Nice guys. I was interested in getting some idea of their eschatology, and comparing that to standard evangelical dispensational belief. I mostly asked questions, brought up historical context, challenged their interpretation. And after about 15 minutes, they said they needed to go. They’ve never been back. I think there is a map at the Kingdom Hall with a big red X over our house.

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  77. Max: Classical Calvinism represents less than 10% of Christendom worldwide, while “New” Calvinism represents only a fraction of that.

    Max, This statistic may be worldwide (?) but it can’t be accurate in the US. Just in our (small) city we’ve been unable to find a church that is not Calvinistic in teaching. One church we thought was NOT was still using MacArthur books in their SS classes. And although we would like to think the (very) small church we attend is NOT it still depends on who speaks (they don’t have a pastor so have a variety of speakers). It’s depressing when you can’t find a non-Calvinist church where John 3:16 is still loved and taught.

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  78. dainca,

    Sorry if I misunderstood what he was saying. It was my understanding Wade was promoting a view that Jesus submitted to the Father. Sorry, Wade. Blessings to you and your family.

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  79. Leslie Puryear: a view that Jesus submitted to the Father

    John 8:28-29 “So Jesus said, “When you have lifted up the Son of Man, then you will know that I am He, and that I do nothing on My own, but speak exactly what the Father has taught Me. 29 He who sent Me is with Me. He has not left Me alone, because I always do what pleases Him.””

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  80. Mary27: It’s depressing when you can’t find a non-Calvinist church where John 3:16 is still loved and taught.

    Depressing is a good word for the new reformation. The New Calvinist gospel is another gospel which is not the Gospel at all. To date, New Calvinism is primarily an American phenomenon … it is the “now” thing that young pastors are jumping on board with. Sad to see a generation lost to this. I understand your frustration about not being able to find a non-Calvinist church in your area; we hear that a lot on TWW. The young reformers are planting new churches or taking over non-Calvinist churches at a rapid pace. It’s amazing that they find so many followers gullible enough to buy into their aberrations of faith.

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  81. linda: in 20 to 25 years, or sooner if the market hits saturation, the SBC will be taken in by yet another distortion of the message JUST TO SELL BOOKS … All marketing. All nickels and noses, butts and bucks.

    SBC’s publishing house, LifeWay, has not been kind to the non-Calvinist majority of Southern Baptists. New Calvinism is what sells right now so LifeWay promotes it at the expense of the non-Calvinist belief and practice held by Southern Baptists for the last 150 years. You simply can’t trust LifeWay teaching materials right now; traditional Southern Baptists beware!

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  82. Deb: I used to spend lots of $$$ at LifeWay. Stopped going there almost a decade ago due to their Neo-Cal emphasis.

    Same here. On my last trip to LifeWay, I had to literally walk around a rack full of Neo-Cal books that was strategically placed at the door; they offer Piper books galore. I suspect they sell more ESV Bibles than any other “Christian” book store. I go back far enough to remember LifeWay’s predecessor, the SBC Sunday School Board … Southern Baptists could trust that publisher.

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  83. Muslin, fka Deana Holmes: So even Quakers had to be brought to understanding the wrongness of chattel slavery.

    Yes, indeed they did. This book is on my reading list for later this year when I do more research writing on background about the American civil rights movement.

    https://www.amazon.com/Peace-Freedom-Rhetoric-Antislavery-1657-1761/dp/0300180772/

    In the first book to investigate in detail the origins of antislavery thought and rhetoric within the Society of Friends, Brycchan Carey shows how the Quakers turned against slavery in the first half of the eighteenth century and became the first organization to take a stand against the slave trade.

    Through meticulous examination of the earliest writings of the Friends, including journals and letters, Carey reveals the society’s gradual transition from expressing doubt about slavery to adamant opposition. He shows that while progression toward this stance was ongoing, it was slow and uneven and that it was vigorous internal debate and discussion that ultimately led to a call for abolition. His book will be a major contribution to the history of the rhetoric of antislavery and the development of antislavery thought as explicated in early Quaker writing.

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  84. I may have posted this to this blog before a long time ago. Apologies if this is a repeat. I just came across the headline again today.

    The 10 professions with the most psychopaths
    http://www.businessinsider.com/professions-with-the-most-psychopaths-2018-5

    8. Clergy person

    In a blog post for Psychology Today, FBI veteran Joe Navarro explains some of the reasons psychopathic people may go for a career in the Clergy.
    Among them are the fact religious organisations may provide a means for people to exploit others, while also giving legitimacy to their actions.
    Also, it is easy to make alliances, which can give manipulative people the upper hand in gaining access to sensitive information.

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  85. Muslin, fka Deana Holmes,

    brad/futuristguy,

    Really appreciate the thoughts you both shared. History is so fascinating. There’s so much we could discuss.

    Deana, I’m impressed that you mentioned one of my favorite historical figures which most people have never heard of—Benjamin Lay (1682-1759). He was one of those rare people willing to stand up for truth even when everyone hated him for it.

    Brad, the amount of research you do is really impressive as well. Look forward to hearing more whenever you have time.

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  86. Muslin, fka Deana Holmes: So even Quakers had to be brought to understanding the wrongness of chattel slavery.

    Remember that slavery had been a part of civilization since the beginning of recorded history. Slavery was what was NORMAL throughout history, and fish don’t know they’re wet.

    According to my other writing partner some years ago, slavery and serfdom was on the decline in the late Middle Ages, only to get a boost back into the big time by the Renaissance and the Age of Exploration (and Colonization/Empire).

    1) A side effect of the Renaissance was an attitude of “Greco-Roman Fanboy-ism” where the thing to do (evolving beyond Medieval superstition) was to imitate the Greeks and Romans in every way possible — Greeks kept their women barefoot and pregnant, So Must We; Greeks and Romans rose to greatness on a mudsill of slave labor, So Must We; Rome Ruled the World, So Must We!

    2) And around the time this went down, the Americas were contacted, Africa was circumnavigated, and both ended up open for penetration, conquest, colonization, and planting. Gold, Ivory, Riches — and SLAVES to work all these new Colonial mines and plantations for Milords Who Would be Kings.

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  87. What is truly the crux of this argument, and what many egalitarians fail to understand, is that a difference in role does not equate to a difference in quality, importance, or value. Men and women are equally valued in God’s sight and plan. Women are not inferior to men. Rather, God assigns different roles to men and women in the church and the home because that is how He designed us to function. The truth of differentiation and equality can be seen in the functional hierarchy within the Trinity (cf. 1 Corinthians 11:3). The Son submits to the Father, and the Holy Spirit submits to the Father and the Son. This functional submission does not imply an equivalent inferiority of essence; all three Persons are equally God, but they differ in their function. Likewise, men and women are equally human beings and equally share the image of God, but they have God-ordained roles and functions that mirror the functional hierarchy within the Trinity.

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  88. CJ: The Son submits to the Father, and the Holy Spirit submits to the Father and the Son.

    Just so you know, this is formal heresy.

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  89. Scripture contains approximately 170 references to God as the “Father.” By necessity, one cannot be a father unless one is male. If God had chosen to be revealed to man in a female form, then the word “mother” would have occurred in these places, not “father.” In the Old and New Testaments, masculine pronouns are used over and over again in reference to God.

    God loves us !!

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  90. As John 4:24 states, “God is spirit, and his worshipers must worship in spirit and in truth.” Since God is a spiritual being, He does not possess physical human characteristics. However, sometimes figurative language used in Scripture assigns human characteristics to God in order to make it possible for man to understand God. This assignment of human characteristics to describe God is called “anthropomorphism.” Anthropomorphism is simply a means for God (a spiritual being) to communicate truth about His nature to humanity, physical beings. Since humanity is physical, we are limited in our understanding of those things beyond the physical realm; therefore, anthropomorphism in Scripture helps us to understand who God is.

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  91. CJ: Likewise, men and women are equally human beings and equally share the image of God, but they have God-ordained roles and functions that mirror the functional hierarchy within the Trinity.

    Please provide one scripture where men/husbands are commanded to lead their wives or to have authority over them.

    There is only one scripture that uses the word authority in the relationship of husband and wife and it’s in 1 Cor. 7 where each has authority over the other.

    1Cor. 7:4  The wife does not have authority over her own body, but the husband does; and likewise also the husband does not have authority over his own body, but the wife does.

    Furthermore, scripture lists 59 “one-anothers” that reflect beyond a doubt the mutual relationship of men/women, and husbands/wives rather than a heirarchy.

    http://www.smallgroupchurches.com/the-59-one-anothers-of-the-bible/

     

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  92. CJ: However, sometimes figurative language used in Scripture assigns human characteristics to God in order to make it possible for man to understand God.

    You are correct. God is not a rock; does not have feathers; does not have wings as a shelter; etc. Yet we do find female characteristics of God in scripture such as giving birth, nursing, comparison to a woman who cannot forget the child of her womb.

    God is a spirit with characteristics that are reflected by both male and female who are made in the image and likeness of God. Gen. 1:26

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  93. CJ: What is truly the crux of this argument, and what many egalitarians fail to understand, is that a difference in role does not equate to a difference in quality, importance, or value

    We’ve heard that one before. It’s just not true.

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  94. Ken F (aka Tweed): CJ: The Son submits to the Father, and the Holy Spirit submits to the Father and the Son.

    Just so you know, this is formal heresy.

    Sounds like CJ has been hanging out with Grudem and Ware … that will drive you crazy after a while.

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  95. Yes, thank you for this post. I’ve been saying for awhile that the true liberals in the SBC today, are the so-called conservatives.

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  96. Max: Sounds like CJ has been hanging out with Grudem and Ware … that will drive you crazy after a while.

    This appears to be true for more than one CJ…

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  97. Lea: I understand and appreciate the point of this post which I will read in a moment, however I don’t need a biblical basis for believing men and women are equal. If I did, my go to would be Galatians. All of us are one in Christ. Why make it complicated?

    They will often explain away Galatians as referring to “our spiritual position in Christ” and only about our salvation. Therefore they will dismiss it as irrelevant to debates about roles and leadership. They will argue that we cannot dismiss “the plain meaning” of 1 Timothy 2.

    I actually understand their premise but I don’t agree with their conclusion. Both the Old Testament and New Testament were written in patriarchal and oppressive societies. Paul says that Christ died to rescue us from “the present evil age” and “there is neither Jew nor Greek, slave nor free, male nor female but we are all one in Christ”. In the new creation this will be a physical and visible reality but we are still in a fallen world and fighting against the system. Paul and the other apostles could not simply go out and challenge the system as that could have destroyed the church at birth so they had to be careful. Just like today we have to respect the cultures we are in and not be a stumbling block for the sake of the gospel. I see the erasure of racial distinctions, the abolition of slavery and the liberation of women in embryo in Galatians 3:28 but they took decades and even centuries to take effect. I am indebted to John Stackhouse for this explanation of patriarchal passages and I would highly recommend his book Partners in Christ which makes a strong case for egalitarianism.

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  98. Daisy: In a blog post for Psychology Today, FBI veteran Joe Navarro explains some of the reasons psychopathic people may go for a career in the Clergy.
    Among them are the fact religious organisations may provide a means for people to exploit others, while also giving legitimacy to their actions.

    This is very interesting but not surprising. I abandoned the institutional church over a year ago and I believe the modern church has departed from the New Testament pattern. The practice of employing a full time paid “pastor” or “vicar” has no basis in the New Testament and it lays the foundation for this abuse and exploitation.

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  99. linda,

    The New Calvinism is actually not friendly to dispensationalism and vice versa. Whilst Dallas Theological Cemetary has stood with TGC on some issues, they have differences on those issues. Dave Hunt of the Berean Call has received a lot of heat from the Gospel Corporation for his book What Love is This? Hunt has also rebutted Piper on Christian Hedonism. Old style Calvinists like Peter Masters of the Metropolitan Tabernacle has been critical of the New Calvinism. And many fundamentalists would condemn TGC for their 501c3 incorporation as “government controlled churches”. My point is not to tar everyone with the same brush.

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  100. Victorious,

    Exactly, Victorious. The OT also has the psalmist comparing his relationship with God to a weaned child resting in his Mother’s arms and in the NT, Jesus describes God as a woman with a broom cleaning her house.

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  101. ZechZav: Dave Hunt of the Berean Call has received a lot of heat from the Gospel Corporation for his book What Love is This?

    I encourage every Wartburger to read Hunt’s book: “What Love is This? Calvinism’s Misrepresentation of God” (Dave Hunt). Hunt (died a few years ago) spent a good deal of his ministry refuting many misconceptions of Calvinism.

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  102. Discussing woman elder roles interesting topic thanks all for sharpening my wisdom. No matter where everyone settles on there view we respect one another in Christ.

    egalitarian position. If 1 Cor. 11:3 must mean source, then does the same wording in Eph. 5:23 require that it also be source since they are so very similar? Of course not. Paul knew what he was saying, and we can see the meaning of the word “head” in Eph. 5:21-24 as authority just as the context of 1 Cor. 11 deals with authority.

    Before we leave this topic, there are two other verses worth considering briefly.

    Eph. 1:21-23, Col 3:18

    Peace and love in Christ

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  103. CJ: Paul knew what he was saying, and we can see the meaning of the word “head” in Eph. 5:21-24 as authority

    Ephesians does not use the word authority at all. Surely Paul knew he word….

    In correct context, Ephesians 5 speaks of Christ as One who “gave Himself up,”; took the form of a bond-servant, humbled Himself, etc. for the church. See here:

    Php 2:7  but emptied Himself, taking the form of a bond-servant, and being made in the likeness of men. 

    Php 2:8  Being found in appearance as a man, He humbled Himself by becoming obedient to the point of death, even death on a cross.

    Again, no mention of authority but rather the kind of love Jesus had when He gave His very life for those He loves.

     

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  104. CJ: Paul knew what he was saying, and we can see the meaning of the word “head” in Eph. 5:21-24 as authority

    Hi again CJ

    In order for you to believe a husband has authority over his wife, you must be able to provide scriptural evidence of such a command/mandate given to them/him.

    Again, the challenge to you is to provide one such scripture anywhere in the Bible for husbands to be leaders or authorities over their wives. The only command I have found is for them to agape their wives and give themselves up for her as Christ did for the Church.

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  105. Victorious: In correct context, Ephesians 5 speaks of Christ as One who “gave Himself up,”; took the form of a bond-servant, humbled Himself, etc. for the church.

    Yes. Turning this into ‘I get to make all the rules/decisions’ seems very man made in light of all of scripture, really, and those passages in particular!

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  106. Muff Potter:
    Headless Unicorn Guy,

    “Every Civilization that has ever arisen has been built off the backs of a disposable work force…” — From the film Bladerunner 2049

    “Every civilization sits upon a mudsill of Brute Labor.”
    — Confederate President Jefferson Davis in Harry Turtledove’s SF/historical Guns of the South

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  107. CJ: Scripture contains approximately 170 references to God as the “Father.” By necessity, one cannot be a father unless one is male.

    Like the Dake’s Annotated Bible where God the Father, God the Son, God the Holy Spirit, and ALL the Angels are ALL male in “spiritual bodies”? And females were a special creation to allow procreation?

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  108. Ken F (aka Tweed): Just so you know, this is formal heresy.

    As well as a Heirarchy of Power.
    Kiss Up and Kick Down, even in the Godhead.

    The Great Chain of Being —
    Boots Stamping on Faces all the way down.

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  109. Headless Unicorn Guy,

    Interesting you commented on Angels in the God’s system. There are lots of interesting studies on angels. These seemed to be male.

    The Nephilim (“fallen ones, giants”) were the offspring of sexual relationships between the sons of God and daughters of men in Genesis 6:1–4. There is much debate as to the identity of the “sons of God.” but I think “sons of God” were fallen angels (demons) who mated with human females or possessed human males who then mated with human females. These unions resulted in offspring, the Nephilim, who were “heroes of old, men of renown” (Genesis 6:4).

    Peace in him

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  110. Victorious,

    Husband Being The Spiritual Leader

    1 Corinthians 11:3 ESV / 155 helpful votes
    But I want you to understand that the head of every man is Christ, the head of a wife is her husband, and the head of Christ is God.

    1 Peter 3:7 ESV / 148 helpful votes
    Likewise, husbands, live with your wives in an understanding way, showing honor to the woman as the weaker vessel, since they are heirs with you of the grace of life, so that your prayers may not be hindered.

    Ephesians 5:22-33 ESV / 122 helpful votes
    Wives, submit to your own husbands, as to the Lord. For the husband is the head of the wife even as Christ is the head of the church, his body, and is himself its Savior. Now as the church submits to Christ, so also wives should submit in everything to their husbands. Husbands, love your wives, as Christ loved the church and gave himself up for her, that he might sanctify her, having cleansed her by the washing of water with the word, …

    Ephesians 5:22 ESV / 99 helpful votes
    Wives, submit to your own husbands, as to the Lord.

    Ephesians 5:1-33 ESV / 97 helpful votes
    Therefore be imitators of God, as beloved children. And walk in love, as Christ loved us and gave himself up for us, a fragrant offering and sacrifice to God. But sexual immorality and all impurity or covetousness must not even be named among you, as is proper among saints. Let there be no filthiness nor foolish talk nor crude joking, which are out of place, but instead let there be thanksgiving. For you may be sure of this, that everyone who is sexually immoral or impure, or who is covetous (that is, an idolater), has no inheritance in the kingdom of Christ and God. …

    Ephesians 6:4 ESV / 95 helpful votes
    Fathers, do not provoke your children to anger, but bring them up in the discipline and instruction of the Lord.

    1 Peter 3:1-22 ESV / 63 helpful votes
    Likewise, wives, be subject to your own husbands, so that even if some do not obey the word, they may be won without a word by the conduct of their wives, when they see your respectful and pure conduct. Do not let your adorning be external—the braiding of hair and the putting on of gold jewelry, or the clothing you wear— but let your adorning be the hidden person of the heart with the imperishable beauty of a gentle and quiet spirit, which in God’s sight is very precious. For this is how the holy women who hoped in God used to adorn themselves, by submitting to their own husbands, …

    Ephesians 5:25 ESV / 58 helpful votes
    Husbands, love your wives, as Christ loved the church and gave himself up for her,

    Ephesians 5:21-33 ESV / 56 helpful votes
    Submitting to one another out of reverence for Christ. Wives, submit to your own husbands, as to the Lord. For the husband is the head of the wife even as Christ is the head of the church, his body, and is himself its Savior. Now as the church submits to Christ, so also wives should submit in everything to their husbands. Husbands, love your wives, as Christ loved the church and gave himself up for her, …

    Deuteronomy 6:6-7 ESV / 56 helpful votes
    And these words that I command you today shall be on your heart. You shall teach them diligently to your children, and shall talk of them when you sit in your house, and when you walk by the way, and when you lie down, and when you rise.

    Genesis 3:16 ESV / 55 helpful votes
    To the woman he said, “I will surely multiply your pain in childbearing; in pain you shall bring forth children. Your desire shall be for your husband, and he shall rule over you.”

    Ephesians 5:22-24 ESV / 53 helpful votes
    Wives, submit to your own husbands, as to the Lord. For the husband is the head of the wife even as Christ is the head of the church, his body, and is himself its Savior. Now as the church submits to Christ, so also wives should submit in everything to their husbands.

    1 Timothy 5:8 ESV / 46 helpful votes
    But if anyone does not provide for his relatives, and especially for members of his household, he has denied the faith and is worse than an unbeliever.

    Ephesians 5:21 ESV / 46 helpful votes
    Submitting to one another out of reverence for Christ.

    Peace and Grace in him always !

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  111. we will define effeminate (for men) and masculine (for women) as lifestyle choices in defiance of a person’s God-given gender. In the Old Testament, the word translated as “effeminate” is also used for male prostitutes (Deuteronomy 23:17; 1 Kings 22:46). In the New Testament, the Greek word translated “effeminate” means “soft and delicate.” In First Corinthians 6:9, this word is listed separately from homosexuality, indicating that they are not synonymous. An “effeminate” man in this verse is one who has rejected his masculinity and identifies as a female. He may or may not be sexually active, but he has chosen to live intentionally as a “soft and delicate” person, rather than embrace His God-given identity as a man. He takes on the characteristics of a female and relates to other males much like women do.

    When God designed male and female (Genesis 5:2), He created more than mere physical differences. Men and women were created to fulfill differing roles in creation and in our relationship with the Lord. Rejecting those God-assigned roles is a symptom of rebellion against our Creator. When people defy God and decide they can live any way they choose, God allows them to follow their perverted lusts to their natural consequences. Romans 1:26–27 says, “That is why God abandoned them to their shameful desires. Even the women turned against the natural way to have sex and instead indulged in sex with each other. And the men, instead of having normal sexual relations with women, burned with lust for each other. Men did shameful things with other men, and as a result of this sin, they suffered within themselves the penalty they deserved” (NLT).

    Perversion escalates when women and men abandon their God-ordained identities and try to adopt the characteristics of the opposite gender. Men become like women, and women become like men. The sin lies in our choices, not our natural differences. We must be careful not to assign certain traits to each gender based upon our own cultural norms. In some cultures, men holding hands or kissing on the cheek is a sign of friendship, not an indication of femininity or homosexuality. In Jesus’ day, men wore robes and reclined at the table, lying upon each other’s chests (John 21:20). But these cultural differences in no way indicate a rejection of masculinity.

    The phenomenon of gender reversals is escalating in our day with sex-change surgeries and demands that the “transgendered” be accommodated. People are abandoning their natural identities and mentally identifying as any gender they choose. Society is indulging this craziness, which leads to even more confusion. For those struggling with gender confusion, the answer lies not in altering their physical bodies, but in allowing the Holy Spirit to change their hearts (1 Peter 4:2). When we submit ourselves fully to the lordship of Jesus, we desire to follow His design for us, rather than choose our own design (Galatians 2:20).

    For a man to despise his gender and identify as a woman, or for a woman to abandon her gender and present herself as a man, is wrong. It is a defiance of God’s design when He created male and female. Deuteronomy 22:5 says, “A woman must not wear men’s clothing, nor a man wear women’s clothing, for the LORD your God detests anyone who does this.” This command was not as much about clothing as it was about guarding the sanctity of what it means to be a man or a woman. Romans 1 shows that gender confusion is merely a symptom of a bigger problem. When people reject God’s authority and set themselves up as their own gods, chaos results. Verses 21 and 22 illustrate the problem: “For although they knew God, they neither glorified him as God nor gave thanks to him, but their thinking became futile and their foolish hearts were darkened. Although they claimed to be wise, they became fools.”

    Thinking that we know better than God is the doorway to becoming a fool. When a man defies his masculinity or a woman rejects her femininity, it is a symptom of grosser sin: rejection of God’s ultimate authority. The closer we grow to God, the more we can embrace our gender identity. Both genders display certain aspects of God’s character in a unique way. When we pervert His choice for us, we limit the opportunities He gives us to demonstrate the glory of being created in His image (Genesis 1:27).

    Interesting read ! Grace and peace in our savior always The God Man (Jesus)

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  112. CJ,

    Excellent job proving Victorious’s point that there are no scriptures telling husbands to take authority over their wives!!!

    There is one warning Eve that her husband will try to rule over her, which is obviously a bad thing.

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  113. CJ: Men and women were created to fulfill differing roles in creation and in our relationship with the Lord. Rejecting those God-assigned roles is a symptom of rebellion against our Creator … Perversion escalates when women and men abandon their God-ordained identities and try to adopt the characteristics of the opposite gender.

    CJ, are you implying that an egalitarian view of equality of men and women before God – being “one” in Christ – can lead to sexual perversion?

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  114. I appreciate everyone’s knowledge. Just for the record I’m married to a beautiful strong woman who speaks her mind and we compliment each other as God designed. I love her with all my heart and believe she has as more to offer God and his kingdom then I do. I believe men and woman are equal in God’s eyes like a father loves all his children the same, but this is just my opinion and in the love of Christ I believe we can agree to disagree. I just believe God’s design for the church is so that men and women have different roles and again not that the woman is by means any less. I also for the record don’t believe a woman should bow down to any man or take abuse at all, but that being said if she knows the word of God and the spirit is leading her she wouldn’t stand for it. I also don’t believe men should stay in a abusive situation with a woman who is physically or verbally abusive if they are feeling lead to separate by the holy spirit. Its not just woman who are abused. Its men also. Its not just one sided if were all equal in God’s eyes.

    Peace in him !

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  115. Headless Unicorn Guy,

    That picture is tough to look at. What a tough time for African Americans back then, but same with the Armenian people in Turkey too, my heart breaks for that type of injustice.

    Color is always more complex than black and white. When it comes to propagating truth and discipling people into the Christian faith, most spiritual leaders prefer black-and-white simplicity and resist complexity. Complexity is too colorful. We prefer doling out black-and-white conclusions. Telling people what seems so much simpler and safer than telling them why.

    Thinking, cognizing, conceptualizing, perceiving, understanding, comprehending and cogitating—all are words for actions that are much more complex than simply commanding and directing. Commanding people to act in a certain way is so clean and clear. Helping them internalize the why behind an action and letting them participate in a discussion on conclusions and personal convictions may seem both cumbersome and potentially dangerous. After all, they may conclude something different than their leaders and peers do. They might even listen to secular music and go out dancing. Or perhaps they’ll avoid profanity and find their politics more conservative. But discussion welcomes these differences, and faith communities should do the same.

    Truth is, it is easier to make Christianity about externals and man-made rules. Sameness makes it easier for us to tell who the “insiders” are. But Christ never wanted His followers to forfeit their distinctiveness and to be absorbed into some great cosmic oneness or sameness like a retread Eastern mysticism. Don’t settle for a synthetic Christianity that feels restrictive and holds little joy for you; instead pursue a vibrant, life-empowering journey of faith. Yes, black and white is easier. But we are called to the challenge and wonder of color.

    Stereotypes are purposeful generalizations (and often exaggerations), but God created each of us uniquely; no two people are exactly the same, even if they are part of the same gender, race, or culture. A certain group may share a language, skin color, style of dress, or even the same mannerisms, habits, or speech patterns (such as the colloquial use of the word y’all), and such similarities can lead to stereotypes. But every group is still comprised of individuals with varying character traits and physical features. Stereotyping takes the rich history of an entire culture or race and boils it down to simplistic and often unfair notions of what individuals are like.

    Believers should always take stereotypes with a grain of salt. We must be aware of the proclivities, trends, and general characteristics of the people we minister to, but we should also strive to know people as individuals. When we hear a stereotype, we should recognize it as such and discern if it is fair or unfair, remembering that “the Lord does not look at the things people look at. People look at the outward appearance, but the Lord looks at the heart” (1 Samuel 16:7). As Christians, we are to become more and more like Christ (1 Corinthians 11:1; Ephesians 5:1; 1 John 2:6), which means seeing others as He sees them and sharing His heart for them (see Matthew 9:36). As we walk in obedience to God, we will be able to release our preconceived or unfair notions of others and “judge correctly” (John 7:24).

    Walk by faith not by sight! That is why there is no accurate physical description of Jesus skin color or hair because it didn’t matter he was sent for a purpose and to fulfill the ROLE God sent him for. Just as we all have a role being made in his image.

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  116. CJ
    I’m always intrigued by commenters that suddenly appear on threads, and are topic focussed.

    You also raise eyebrows (mine at least) by going back to the ancient things forgotten by Evangelicals. Yet, you make substantial errors in comprehension. What is more, you quote from a paraphrase, not a translation.

    My take is: You have a compilation of doctrines you have received, and been taught. You regurgitate them.

    Try this. Read Romans 1 again, but in an actual translation, of your choice. What is the reason God gave them over? (KJV)

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  117. I found this writing. Be Blessed in him always !!

    The doctrine of the Trinity has been a divisive issue throughout the entire history of the Christian church. While the core aspects of the Trinity are clearly presented in God’s Word, some of the side issues are not as explicitly clear. The Father is God, the Son is God, and the Holy Spirit is God—but there is only one God. That is the biblical doctrine of the Trinity. Beyond that, the issues are, to a certain extent, debatable and non-essential. Rather than attempting to fully define the Trinity with our finite human minds, we would be better served by focusing on the fact of God’s greatness and His infinitely higher nature. “Oh, the depth of the riches of the wisdom and knowledge of God! How unsearchable his judgments, and his paths beyond tracing out! Who has known the mind of the Lord? Or who has been his counselor?” (Romans 11:33-34).

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  118. Nathan Priddis: My take is: You have a compilation of doctrines you have received, and been taught. You regurgitate them.

    The really scary thing is that there are hundreds/thousands of young reformers taught these same aberrations of Scripture at SBC seminaries … they are coming to a church near you! CJ may very well be sitting in a dorm at SBTS typing his comments. They have no spiritual mind of their own; they group-think and borrow things from each other or spit up Piper Points, Mohler Moments, Dever Drivel, and Mahaney Malarkey. It’s a dirty shame to see otherwise intelligent folks fall for this stuff.

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  119. CJ: Husband Being The Spiritual Leader

    1 Corinthians 11:3 ESV / 155 helpful votes
    But I want you to understand that the head of every man is Christ, the head of a wife is her husband, and the head of Christ is God.

    You have not provided a command for husbands/men to lead their wives/women or to have authority over them.

    The 1 Cor. 11 reference cannot prove such a command unless you are (1) establishing a heirarchy in the Trinity and (2) assuming Christ is not the “head” of every woman but the man only.

    Again, rather than posting every complementarian verse in an effort to confuse the issue and deflect it from the challenge I presented, please post even one scripture that is evidence that husbands have been commanded to lead their wives and act as their authorities. I see no such scripture in the litany of those you have posted.

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  120. Lea: CJ,

    Excellent job proving Victorious’s point that there are no scriptures telling husbands to take authority over their wives!!!

    He’s deflecting since there is no such command to men/husbands.

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  121. Victorious,

    Sorry it was not my intention you felt I was deflecting. My ADHD was taking over earlier and I was answering other responses. You all have been so helpful in me digging deeper into God’s word and teaching me to celebrate our differences. I’m so much stronger of a complementarian believer now from the rebuttal research. Not that it matters. Most importantly we are united in our faith in Christ as we understand him through the Holy Spirit.

    Your right there is only 10 commandments in the bible. Ephesians 5:23 For a husband has authority over his wife just as Christ has authority over the church; and Christ is himself the Savior of the church, his body.

    Thanks for letting me share today and thanks to the ladies who created this website where people can grow in the grace and knowledge of Jesus Christ!

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  122. Victorious,

    Sorry it was not my intention you felt I was deflecting. My ADHD was taking over earlier and I was answering other responses. You all have been so helpful in me digging deeper into God’s word and teaching me to celebrate our differences. I’m so much stronger of a complementarian believer now from the rebuttal research. Not that it matters. Most importantly we are united in our faith in Christ as we understand him through the Holy Spirit.

    Your right there is only 10 commandments in the bible. Ephesians 5:23 For a husband has authority over his wife just as Christ has authority over the church; and Christ is himself the Savior of the church, his body.

    Thanks for letting me share today and thanks to the ladies who created this website where people can grow in the grace and knowledge of Jesus Christ!

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  123. Max: The really scary thing is that there are hundreds/thousands of young reformers taught these same aberrations of Scripture at SBC seminaries … they are coming to a church near you!CJ may very well be sitting in a dorm at SBTS typing his comments.They have no spiritual mind of their own; they group-think and borrow things from each other or spit up Piper Points, Mohler Moments, Dever Drivel, and Mahaney Malarkey.It’s a dirty shame to see otherwise intelligent folks fall for this stuff.

    I am confused by the NTL. I would have expected ESV.

    Romans 1 is especially damming to the sexual and public morality elements of modern Evangelicalism. I think Neo Calvinism would come unhinged if it was pointed out that lesbianism was one of the few sexual acts NOT banned by the Law, and is never mentioned at all in the Old Testament. Mentioned in passing in Romans 1, we find it came from God, because men changed the visible knowledge of God.

    This knowledge is older then the written word, and was spoken of in the first half of Psalm 19, and others such as Jude. Or to simplify things, from cover to cover. Reform Theology can not process the first chapter of Romans, and yet it could be argued it draws more on this book then all others.

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  124. CJ: Ephesians 5:23 For a husband has authority over his wife just as Christ has authority over the church; and Christ is himself the Savior of the church, his body.

    It sure is easier to make complementarianism work when you just sub in whatever words you want, instead of what is actually there.

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  125. Lea: CJ: Ephesians 5:23 For a husband has authority over his wife just as Christ has authority over the church; and Christ is himself the Savior of the church, his body.

    It sure is easier to make complementarianism work when you just sub in whatever words you want, instead of what is actually there.

    Indeed. I mentioned previously that the only time authority is mentioned relative to a husband/wife relationship is 1 Cor. 7:4.

    The wife does not have authority over her own body, but the husband does; and likewise also the husband does not have authority over his own body, but the wife does. 1Cor. 7:4

     

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  126. If we should accept as brothers and sisters those who say Jesus was a lesser, created being, then should we also welcome Jehovah’s Witnesses? Isn’t that the error that got them labeled a cult?

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  127. CJ: Color is always more complex than black and white. When it comes to propagating truth and discipling people into the Christian faith, most spiritual leaders prefer black-and-white simplicity and resist complexity. Complexity is too colorful. We prefer doling out black-and-white conclusions. Telling people what seems so much simpler and safer than telling them why.

    Just as gender is more complex than egg and sperm ……

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  128. CJ: Rather than attempting to fully define the Trinity with our finite human minds, we would be better served by focusing on the fact of God’s greatness and His infinitely higher nature.

    And yet this is exactly what you did here:

    “The Son submits to the Father, and the Holy Spirit submits to the Father and the Son. This functional submission does not imply an equivalent inferiority of essence; all three Persons are equally God, but they differ in their function.”

    You used this heresy as justification for your views on gender roles. Anyone needing to rely on a heresy to prove their point should reconsider their point.

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  129. Lea: Lea on Thu May 17, 2018 at 01:14 PM said:
    CJ,

    Excellent job proving Victorious’s point that there are no scriptures telling husbands to take authority over their wives!!!

    There is one warning Eve that her husband will try to rule over her, which is obviously a bad thing.

    This was the curse which we are no longer understand.

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  130. CJ wrote:

    “For a man to despise his gender and identify as a woman, or for a woman to abandon her gender and present herself as a man, is wrong. It is a defiance of God’s design when He created male and female.”

    All this diatribe proves Nathan’s point that he just spews out his compilation of doctrines. This kind of rhetoric is what causes many people to abandon church and has even driven LGBT people to suicide.

    I have met a few post-operative male to female transgenders and they did not despise their old gender. They did not choose to have gender re-assignment just to shake their fist at God. They were very confused and had been through some deep psychological trauma that had caused them a lot of distress. Although it comes under the same LGBT umbrella as gays and lesbians, it is very different. I had my own prejudices challenged and my starting point is this: This person is a human being created in God’s image and my first duty is to treat her as I would wish to be treated. The Lord Jesus said that this is the summary of the Law and The Prophets. This involves listening to her and trying to empathise and understand what she has been through.

    I take a face value approach to Genesis 1 and 2. Yet from the verse “God created male and female” I can only extrapolate that God created two human beings to start the human race. At most it can be argued that one man, one woman is both normative and general but this does not preclude exceptions. If there are small number of intersex people, then it is also possible that transgender has some underlying psychological causes. The same could be true of same-sex attraction. There is a historical context to Deuteronomy 22:5 which relates to the fertility cults. Of course many fundamentalists would condemn me of having an ulterior motive in believing this. Well, if showing sympathy to a maligned group and trying to make the world a kinder place for them is an “ulterior motive” then so be it. It is much more Christ-like than just hitting somebody with a Bible verse.

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  131. I think that there is some truth on both sides of the issue.

    The complementarians are correct to the extent that they recognize that there are differences between men and women. Heck, at an elementary level even what their normal range of hemoglobin levels is different for example. But the comps are wrong to the extent that they think that they are the ones who get to say what those differences are and they get to determine what the differences mean in application.

    The egalitarians are correct in saying that women are being hindered from doing many things which are as soon to be for women to do as for men to do. The egalitarians are wrong to the extent that some seem to think that women’s value can be linked in any way to whether or not they work in some previously male dominated field of work, as if males get to set the standards as to what is or is not of value.

    And nobody seems to be all that excited when it comes to marriage and marital relationships about how Paul valued celibacy in himself and wished that everybody else was also not married, recommended refusal to marry if one could keep their sexual needs under control, and even said that widows would be happier if they did not remarry even though they could if they wanted to. IMO, if one references the bible says it would be best to look at the larger picture. Not to forget, that for centuries upon centuries some christian traditions have accomplished some very good stuff from people both male and female who rejected marriage and invested their lives in ‘good works’ of various kinds. And still do.

    At the bottom of the list in some religious circles are those of us who do not think that Eve was taken from Adam’s rib in the first place so the whole argument looks entirely different. Our tribe does not seem to be going away, so there is that also.

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  132. okrapod: The egalitarians are wrong to the extent that some seem to think that women’s value can be linked in any way to whether or not they work in some previously male dominated field of work

    I don’t think this is what egalitarians are saying at all. I think society has set a standard for the things it values, and in most cases, because of the way society has been organized, it over values the things men do. That is not egalitarians problem, that is society.

    Likewise, they are not saying men and women are the same, which is generally what comps say we say. But we, men and women, are the same species, and fully capable of so many things and also not children who need to be told what to do.

    However, when a man comes along and restricts what he thinks I should be able to do to 1. Baby making, 2. Obeying some dude, 3. Maybe cleaning the house, and then tells me he is somehow spiritually superior due to plumbing, and then tries to tell me those are just my ‘roles’ and they are ‘equal’ to his roles, which involve…oh…literally everything else including having agency over his own life? Well, I am going to look at him cock eyed because he is full of it.

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  133. okrapod: And nobody seems to be all that excited when it comes to marriage and marital relationships about how Paul valued celibacy in himself

    I have something stuck in customs related to the rest of your comment, but yes. That whole ‘it’s cool and maybe even preferable to be single’ thing does seem to go by the wayside…When’s the last time you heard a sermon on that?

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  134. Lea: When’s the last time you heard a sermon on that?

    I never heard a protestant sermon remotely to that effect. I did hear some discussions on EWTN about consecrated virginity/ vows of chastity and such. And I grabbed onto Paul’s ideas that it is not necessary to marry/ remarry when after my divorce I had to face down public opinion and say ‘you can’t make me’ no matter what you say. Paul was my only friend during that time, and I was still a baptist then.

    Related: I do not think that Paul was egalitarian if the current definitions of egal are used, but I wonder if his negative statements about marriage being a hindrance may not prop up some arguments that he indeed had some non-egal ideas about marriage which influenced his thinking about celibacy.

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  135. okrapod: Related: I do not think that Paul was egalitarian if the current definitions of egal are used

    Paul was living 2k years ago and was probably a product of his time.

    I had a new appreciation for Paul after reading all of his glowing testimonies to women and after hearing an explanation of the way his letters are structured. I think a lot of people use Paul to say things he would not have said. I think he was concerned with order in the church and trying to correct some issues at various churches, if you read him in other places he clearly is not limiting women in the way people see it commonly in patriarchal churches. I see in his words now that he respected women, and I appreciate him more for it.

    It’s interested that you talk about consecrated virginity/vows of chastity. I see that as more mystical, than practical in the way I see Paul’s comments, but it may be just a difference in the language used.

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  136. Max: They have no spiritual mind of their own; they group-think and borrow things from each other or spit up Piper Points, Mohler Moments, Dever Drivel, and Mahaney Malarkey.

    doubleplusduckspeak INGSOC.

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  137. Lea: It’s interested that you talk about consecrated virginity/vows of chastity. I see that as more mystical, than practical in the way I see Paul’s comments, but it may be just a difference in the language used.

    You apparently never met Sister MaryOperatingRoom or Father Joe the parish priest. But seriously, everything that Paul said in 1 Cor 7 is based on practicality. He even linked some of it, but not all of it apparently, to the difficult times.

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  138. okrapod,

    Great analysis on Paul’s writings I don’t believe Paul was eglitarian either otherwise he would not have talked about celebacy in the way he did regarding being married would take away in time serving the lord he said meaning a man or woman choosing celibacy over being married they would not have the time to be a leader or contribute in there household because if both male and female were both the same it wouldn’t matter about being celibate or not contributing because you yourself would complete yourself borh in male and female respects. You all may not share my beliefs and I celebrate the differences but this is place where I come from. Im a complementarian who loves the Lord and women in Beieve women are equal but have different gifts from the spirit and roles within the church. in society I believe woman can be and do as God leads them whatever role that is. I celebrate the New FBI director as she was just elected. I come from foundational beliefs below. I know free mason and other religious groups view this differently. Thanks for letting me share.

    The Doctrine of Jesus and the Trinity:

    The Bible’s View: Jesus was God in human form (Matthew 1:18-24, John 1:1). Jesus is the second person of the trinity (Matthew 28:19, Mark 1:9-11). While on earth, He was fully human (Mark 4:38, Matthew 4:2) and fully divine (John 20:28, John 1:1-2, Acts 4:10-12). Christians should pray in Jesus’ name and proclaim Him before others, regardless of offense to non-Christians (John 14:13-14, 1 John 2:23, Acts 4:18-20).

    The Bible’s View: The supernatural and plenary inspiration of the Scriptures—that they are inerrant and that their teachings and authority are absolute, supreme, and final. The Bible is the Word of God (2 Timothy 3:16, 1 Thessalonians 2:13).

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  139. Irene,

    I believe for myself of course. Jesus is equal to God as the holy spirit is equal to Jesus. Trinity belief is what I believe that God Jesus and the Holy Spirit are all one but yet separate but yet equal and different in the rolls played in our spiritual formation. I celebrate our differences. I’m always open and praise the Lord for you all and for the spirits guidance and god sending his son to die on the cross for my sins so I could repent and except Jesus death on the cross and his resurection after 3 days and then going to be with the father so that he would leave a helper in the holy spirit to live in me so that after repenting and accepting I will be guided in this life and the next because of eternal salvation. Its a a gift from God and all 3 played a role and still do. Walk by faith not by sight

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  140. CJ: I celebrate our differences

    When the differences that are celebrated in our churches are determined merely by our physical bodies, we have neglected to celebrate and recognize the very differences that we have as individuals.

    Some may be short; others tall
    Some may be smarter or more intelligent than others
    Some may have blue, brown, hazel, etc. colored eyes
    Some may have achieved their goals in a variety of areas; others are still striving
    Some may have brown skin; others white
    Some may choose to marry; others desire the single life
    Some may want children; others may not be capable of being parents
    Some will be attending or have attended colleges, universities, while others may with a trade school
    Some are new Christians; others are older, more mature believers
    All have a variety of gifts for edifying the Body of Christ

    The list of differences goes on and on…but those are the ones we should appreciate in others. Not only the physical differences. To celebrate only physical/gender differences is narrow and lacks understanding of how God celebrates our differences.

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  141. Victorious,

    I do celebrate physical, mental and spiritual differences with woman and men always. God made us all different and our uniqueness are what make up a healthy body of Christ but I do have times where when prompted by the Holy spirit to point out the way a brother or sister may need some guidance I talk to them in a spirit filled way and stay open to there opinion but I also hold strong to my convictions that I have from scripture and the spirit guiding me. Its all our interpretation and God says in James to pray for Wisdom.

    Sorry for any confusion, the comment I also made about celebrating differences was because I’m of the complentarian belief and most are of the egglitarian belief and its ok to have different opinions on that aspect of Christianity its not an essential belief for salvation if your of Christian faith? Thanks again for sharing. Peace in our Savior !

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  142. CJ:
    Victorious,

    I do celebrate physical, mental and spiritual differences with woman and men always.God made us all different and our uniqueness are what make up a healthy body of Christ but I do have times where when prompted by the Holy spirit to point out the way a brother or sister may need some guidance I talk to them in a spirit filled way and stay open to there opinion but I also hold strong to my convictions that I have from scripture and the spirit guiding me. Its all our interpretation and God says in James to pray for Wisdom.

    Sorry for any confusion, the comment I also made about celebrating differences was because I’m of the complentarian belief and most are of the egglitarian belief and its ok to have different opinions on that aspect of Christianity its not an essential belief for salvation if your of Christian faith?Thanks again for sharing.Peace in our Savior !

    CJ.
    You my man…..have been immersed waaaaaayyy to much in comp doctrine. No normal man “celebrates” women’s bodies.

    And, if you are promoting ESS, you are promoting heresy.

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  143. Headless Unicorn Guy: And missed it at great (and wordy) length.

    I’m still trying to figure out whether CJ passes the Turing test – just when I doubt he writes something that seems human, but then goes back to non-punctuated gibberish. For that matter, could Piper pass the Turing test?

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  144. Ken F (aka Tweed): I’m still trying to figure out whether CJ passes the Turing test – just when I doubt he writes something that seems human, but then goes back to non-punctuated gibberish.For that matter, could Piper pass the Turing test?

    Think about it…
    JUST HOW MUCH OF A LOSER DO YOU HAVE TO BE TO FAIL A TURING TEST?

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