“About three weeks left in a 355-day flight, my doctors for the first time said, ‘Hey, congratulations, you only have three weeks left’ I said, ‘Never talk to me about how much time I have left. I only have today, every day.’ I would have been miserable if I was counting off the days to some bright event in the future. That isn’t living in the moment. It isn’t paying enough attention to the gift of the day I’m living.” – Mark Vande Hei, the record holder for longest space flight by a NASA astronaut.” (He took the photo above.)
(I’m having trouble with Grammarly which helps with some editing. I’m trying to get it resolved.)
This has been on my mind in recent months. I have become aware of some theologians rethinking what they said in earlier years. Because they were well known during the beginnings of the theodudes movement, their words were recorded for posterity. As they back away from some of their earlier statements, do they ever take a moment to say, “I’m sorry?’
Russell Moore just wrote in Christianity Today ” Let’s Rethink the Evangelical Gender Wars subtitled:
“Maybe the lines of division between egalitarians and complementarians were in the wrong places.”
In 2004, he said that the teaching of Beth Moore was a” gateway drug to radical feminism.” He admits it.
Last year I came across stinging words of rebuke against the ministry of Beth Moore. Her preaching and teaching was a “gateway drug to radical feminism,” said a young conservative. I found the rhetoric appalling, but I couldn’t tell that to the author of those words because he no longer exists. He was Russell Moore, circa 2004.
I was wrong about Beth Moore, but I’m even more chastened by the phrase gateway drug. The gender debate between complementarians and egalitarians was often fraught because it was a debate about just that: which views were “gateway drugs” to what abyss, which “slippery slopes” led to what error.
Some were convinced that egalitarians would lead us away from what the Bible declares to be good: that God designed us as male and female, that we need both mothers and fathers, that sexual expression is limited to the union of husband and wife. Meanwhile, others warned that complementarian arguments wrongly used Scripture the way an earlier generation did to defend white supremacy and slavery.
He claims he was both wrong and chastened by his ridiculous overstatement of Moore’s teaching. I wish he could have said, “I’m sorry.” Perhaps he said it directly to Moore with whom he appears to share a cordial relationship. Perhaps she directly forgave him before he was summarily “chastened.” At least he mentioned that he was wrong. However, when one of the theodudes makes a mistake, it affects many more people than one. Take Mark Driscoll…
Moore has, until recently, been part of that Calvinista theodude movement. Do he and others realize that their words live forever on the Internet and are readily available to those who read?
Evangelical women live as feminists.
Here is a 2005 article in the Baptist Press: Many evangelicals unwittingly live as feminists, Moore says. This reviewed some of his comments.
Many complementarians are living according to egalitarian presumptions, and research has shown many conservative and evangelical households to be among the “softest” when it comes to familial harmony, relational happiness and emotional health, Moore said.
“Evangelicals maintain headship in the sphere of ideas, but practical decisions are made in most evangelical homes through a process of negotiation, mutual submission, and consensus,” Moore said. “That’s what our forefathers would have called feminism — and our foremothers, too.”
Egalitarian views are carrying the day within evangelical churches and homes, Moore said, because complementarians have not dealt sufficiently with the forces that drive the feminist impulse: Western notions of consumerism and therapy.
Patriarchy is a better word than complementarianism.
…If evangelical homes and churches are to recover from the confusion of egalitarianism, Moore said, they must embrace a full-orbed vision of biblical patriarchy that restores the male to his divinely ordained station as head of the home and church.
Moore pointed out that the word “patriarchy” has developed negative connotations, even among evangelicals, in direct proportion to the rise of so-called “evangelical feminism,” a movement that began in the 1970s. But the historic Christian faith itself is built upon a thoroughly biblical vision of patriarchy, he said.
“Evangelicals should ask why patriarchy seems negative to those of us who serve the God of Abraham, Isaac, and Jacob — the God and Father of Jesus Christ,” Moore said.
“We must remember that ‘evangelical’ is also a negative term in many contexts. We must allow the patriarchs and apostles themselves, not the editors of ‘Playboy’ or ‘Ms. Magazine,’ to define the grammar of our faith.”
Egalitarianism leads to open theism and a rejection of divine Fatherhood.
An embrace of biblical patriarchy also protects the doctrine of God from aberrations such as the impersonal deity of Protestant liberalism and the unstable “most moved mover” of open theism, he said.
A rejection of male headship leads to a redefinition of divine Fatherhood and divine sovereignty, Moore said. He pointed to open theism (a view that argues God’s knowledge of the future is limited) as an example of the dangers of rejecting biblical patriarchy. Open theism is built upon a denial of the Scripture’s portrayal of God as the sovereign Head of His creation, he said.
Moore hates the word complementarianism.
The link no longer works but we also recorded them in TWW. Moore’s words are carefully recorded by the Bayly Brothers in Russel Moore: “I hate the term ‘complementarian.’
Tim, w/thanks to Chris) Here’s an interesting statement by Southern Baptist Seminary’s Russell Moore unburdening himself about the nomenclature of the sex battles; and more particularly, expressing his extreme dislike for the word ‘complementarian’ and preference for ‘patriarchy.’ He’s exactly right.
Tune in at 29:45, and you will hear this:
Russell Moore: Gender identity and complementarianism… I hate ….the word ‘complementarian’, I prefer the word ‘patriarchy’…
Again at 37:00 ff….
Mark Dever: So then, why is it you don’t like the word complementarianism?
Russell Moore: Because complemnetarianism doesn’t say much
more than the fact that you have different roles. Everyone agrees that
we have different roles, it just a question of on what basis you have
different roles? So an egalitarian would say, “Yeah, I’m a
complementarian too, it’s on the basis of gifts.” I think we need to
say instead, “No you have headship that’s the key issue. It’s
patriarchy, it’s a headship that reflects the headship, the fatherhood
of God, and this is what it looks like, you then have to define what
headship looks like…
Mark Dever: So, Randy (Stinson of the Council on Biblical
Manhood and Womanhood), are you rewriting the CBMW materials to take
out the term complementarianism?
Best thing they could do, but don’t hold your breath…
CJ Mahaney is the bomb when it comes to complementarianism.
Although the post Reimagining Patriarchy, exists, the original paper does not. Back in 2011, when no one was reading g TWW, we quoted the following when we were able to read the whole paper which was presented. Russell Moore Tells Women to Stop Submitting to Men.
Several years prior to the Bayly Brothers’ post, Russell Moore published his own post entitled Reimagining Patriarchy (on November 22, 2005). He begins with these words:
“At last week’s Evangelical Theological Society, I argued for a word contemporary Christians greet with fear and loathing: patriarchy.”
The paper Moore presented was entitled: “After Patriarchy, What? Why Egalitarians Are Winning the Evangelical Gender Debate”. I remember reading this paper in the fall of 2008, and even then I couldn’t get over the fact that Moore held up C.J. Mahaney and Sovereign Grace Ministries as role models of ministry. Here is what Moore wrote on page 6 of his patriarchy paper:
“It is noteworthy that the vitality in evangelical complementarianism right now is among those who are willing to speak directly to the implications and meaning of male headship—and who aren’t embarrassed to use terms such as “male headship.” This vitality is found in specific ecclesial communities—among sectors within the Southern Baptist Convention, the Presbyterian Church in America, the charismatic Calvinists of C.J. Mahaney’s “sovereign grace” network, and the clusters of dispensationalist Bible churches, as well as within coalition projects that practice an “ecumenism with teeth,” such as Touchstone magazine. These groups are talking about male leadership in strikingly counter-cultural and very specific ways, addressing issues such as childrearing, courtship, contraception and family planning—not always with uniformity but always with directness.”
As time has gone on, Moore left his position as dean at Southern Baptist Theological Seminary to become the head of the SBC’s ERLC. When things got dicey, he ditched the ERLC and the SBC by attending a non-SBC church and becoming, for now, the editor-in-chief at Christianity Today.
Moore has undergone a theological transformation although we don’t know yet to what extent. Time will tell. In the meantime, I think it would be helpful if Moore attempted an apology. When I was reading his remarks in the early days of TWW, I knew that I had little in common with him, except maybe the Apostles’ Creed. I think it might be nice for him to say, “I’m sorry. I’ve changed.” Until that happens, color me confused. Maybe he only apologizes in private? Is there any humility or is it just some sort of “Oops, I made a little mistake?”
First! And I’ll go out on a limb and confess, without having read Dee’s post, that I kinda like Russ Moore.
OK, I’ve read it now.
I think putting Russell Moore in the same paragraph with Mark Driscoll was, uh, unfortunate.
I started taking a look at Moore around 2015 when he swam against the southern stream and said they should take down the Confederate flag. He has gone against that stream often, something that made him persona non grata with the Southern Baptist Convention. Like others, they couldn’t tolerate a voice crying in the wilderness.
Also, I think the admission that he was wrong about Beth Moore is an implied apology. But it might help if he were more explicit, particularly as editor of Christianity Today, and since the SBC can’t sack him anymore.
“theodudes … do they ever take a moment to say, “I’m sorry?””
Oh no. That’s not in their repertoire. “Repent? Repent of what?!”
“I hate ….the word ‘complementarian’, I prefer the word ‘patriarchy’…” (Russell Moore)
That’s because “patriarchy” carries a bigger stick. As a patriarch, Moore can be head of the tribe to rule over both men and women.
Of course they won’t apologize. I remember when Wayne Grudem was strictly anti-divorce. His text book on Systematic Theology was read by thousands of seminarians. Funny things, now he’s changed his mind when he found out a friend of his had been abused by her husband for years. See: https://www.christianitytoday.com/ct/podcasts/quick-to-listen/wayne-grudem-divorce-abuse-complementarianism.html.
He wrote a scholarly response here: https://cbmw.org/2020/06/10/grounds-for-divorce-why-i-now-believe-there-are-more-than-two/, without mentioning his reasons for this change of heart.
Having had to counsel abused women in Christian settings, his teachings have made me do a slow burn for years.
No apology for the harm I believe he has caused for decades. While he is facing flak from believers, to his credit he stands by his recent change of mind.
A theological transformation ….. hmmmmm…… Could that be due a cash-flow transformation, or a diminished-popularity-with-the-Theo-bro-Southern-Boyz-Club crowd transformation, or wifey-going-into-orbit-over-abusers-being-shielded, or something along any of those lines??? Or, could it just be flat out embarrassment over the fruits his work has produced???
I will admit that RM gained a tiny, tiny, microscopic amount of respect from me when he took a stand agaInst the SBC elites for protecting sexual predators and demeaning females.
But, it was only a tiny, tiny, microscopic amount of respect because if it had not been for the men who used the complementarian/patriarchal theology to push females into subjugation, I believe that perhaps some, if not much of the abuse would not have happened………. and Russell Moore was driving one of the biggest bulldozers in that comp/pat parade for the GenX portion of “Godly” men.
I didn’t say I didn’t like him. I was interested if these guys ever apologize.
“… The paper Moore presented was entitled: “After Patriarchy, What? Why Egalitarians Are Winning the Evangelical Gender Debate” …”
Uhhh … God won that debate a long time ago. The key debate point that moved the argument His way can be found in Galatians 3:28:
“We are no longer Jews or Greeks or slaves or free men or even merely men or women, but we are all the same — we are Christians; we are one in Christ.” Jesus.
“Do Theologians Like Russell Moore Ever Apologize for Theological Blunders of the Past?”
Kinda a moot point. A “theologian” who cannot apologize for his blunders has just theologized or rationalized himself right out of following Jesus: “All have sinned and fallen short of the glory of God.” And: “If we say that we have no sin, we deceive ourselves, and the truth is not in us. If we confess our sins, he is faithful and just to forgive us our sins, and to cleanse us from all unrighteousness.”
If anyone should be transparent and truthful about their blunders and learning curves, it should be theologians. Blunders is why Jesus came, died, rose and why He’s coming back. Even the nontheologians without Hebrew and Greek can figure that out.
I’ve often wondered how they tap-dance around that one.
I would agree that Russell Moore’s statement regarding Beth Moore is an implied apology. If he did also apologize to her privately, I think that is HER story to tell, not his, because otherwise it looks like he’s tooting his own horn.
HOWEVER, what is missing from his admission of change-of-thinking and/or implied apology is that Beth Moore is not the only person harmed by his words. As an influencer within the evangelical sphere, his words have a wider impact than the average person. What would be more meaningful is if he were to apologize to women and men (in general) who were harmed by following his advice or that of pastors, spouses, or spiritual mentors who parroted it.
That was missing from Wayne Grudem’s change-of-heart, as well.
As someone who studies words, I agree with Russell Moore that the word “patriarchy” is a more accurate reflection of the theology than “complementarian.” To “complement” has no hint of hierarchy in the definition, while “patriarchy” definitely does.
But “patriarchy” as a term had to be ditched in the 1980s, because of “too many negative connotations owing to decades of feminist propaganda,” admits Denny Burke: https://cbmw.org/2019/08/01/whats-in-a-name/
Make of that what you will.
But, back to the topic of apologies… I may not explain this very clearly, sorry. But I have to apologize ALL THE TIME, for both big and little stuff, simply to repair and restore relationships as I move through life, whether with the salesperson I’m interrupting to ask a question and want their above-and-beyond help instead of their minimal help, or to my children when I’m curt with them and don’t want them to learn to be curt right back to me.
I have to do this, repair and restore relationships, because on the surface people have no incentive to go out of their way for me. I am female, not physically imposing, not wealthy, not socially influential, a housewife. The theodudes, in their respective circles, are at the top of the pyramid (male, intellectual, in socially and spiritually influential careers, etc.) and have people going out of their ways to help them simply so that some stardust will rub off. The theodudes don’t NEED to repair and restore relationships in order to make their way through life. So, apologizing isn’t quite as instinctive to them.
Complementarian theology of the more patriarchal persuasion only exacerbates the problem by flat-out telling men they are less easily deceived and more often right than half the human population.
I am admittedly painting with a very broad brush here. I’m sure the theodudes apologize sometimes, to select people.
Just about every mention of “feminism/feminist” in this piece made me laugh out loud because it felt like it was being used as a bogey word to strike fear in the hearts of men (yes, that ending phrase was chosen deliberately). It just doesn’t feel like a serious conversation made in good faith even for the time in which the pieces were originally written. Perhaps that’s why “I’m sorry” is so hard to say? Because it’s not just that “I was wrong,” but that “I was making a really poor argument at the time.”
Maybe it happens as often as those who make bank via an organization (and associated writing gigs, conferences, and more) and then refute it later and/or lament any negative influence or impact. How many of them forsake what is accrued in association with that refutation versus essentially going “Oopsie, mistakes were made – – we good?“ on the way to the bank? Joshua Harris comes to mind among many.
Plus, how many of these people humbly conclude that maybe shifting into being slow to speak as it were for at least a season or maybe for a really good long while might be a good idea? Here’s Moore going from one advocacy position to arguably another as editor in chief of a major publication.
To be frank, I don’t particularly want to hear his opinion on religious or cultural issues. Not only is his voice not one I’ve been inclined to seek out for insight and edification on such issues, but who knows how much he is saying might largely be going towards promoting his own relevance, as with many who go from one high profile gig to another.
Synonyms of apology
: an admission of error or discourtesy accompanied by an expression of regret
Based on this interpretation Moore would have to both admit an error in his thinking as well as express pain and disappointment at his words/actions.
As we say down here in the South, “Ain’t happenin’ “
Why apologize when You Can Do No Wrong?
Bingo. And Sarah W. Honey, you are good with words.
My point exactly.
My wife and I have been married for 50+ years. We have found that our spiritual gifts in Christ complement each other. No hierarchy or patriarchy in our marriage … we work things out together … we have taught each other about the things of God and living the Christian life, as the Spirit reveals Truth to us. When Christ came into our lives, He set us both free.
A relevance which is a moving target, making it irrelevant. Listening to such folks will confuse you like a termite in a yoyo. As the old hymn goes “Build your hope on nothing less than Jesus’ blood and righteousness.” That is relevant.
Russell Moore remains on The Council of ‘The Gospel Coalition’:
Apparently, he’s still considered part of the NeoCal tribe by the who’s-who of the movement. To the TGC crew, Calvinism = Gospel and they hang tight to promote it.
Nice quote Max..
All of the “stuff” on TWW does make me go back to the teachings of Christ… which as you so often to state, the NeoCal crowd like to ignor…
Jeffrey J Chalmers,
When I read Max’s respone, I immediately started singing the childhood, Sunday School song.. my fundamentalist background, for all the negatives that I state now and then, still drilled into me some “fundamental” good/truth..
Jeffrey J Chalmers,
Same here. All the old ‘fundamentalist’ songs/hymns of my past constantly come to my mind. That is why, after I finally escaped the neocal crowd, I found a church online that uses old hymns and I am blessed every time I ‘participate’
As far as Russell Moore – and I admit there are things about him I do like – and his implied apology. Reminds me of an abuser bringing flowers after a beating . . . .
I’ve long thought that Evangelicals feel a strong need for “certainty” (certainty about one’s individual future fate, certainty about doctrine, etc., etc.). There’s also a text in Paul’s writings about “speaking as if speaking the very words of God”, which I suspect reinforces this.
To acknowledge significant past theological errors kind of undermines present certainty — “I now see that I was mistaken in the past; what guarantee do I have that in future I will not regard my present views to also be mistaken?”
Acknowledgement of past errors also undermines widespread thinking about “the illumination of the Spirit.” Gee — that wasn’t the Spirit leading me; it was something or -things else; perhaps my own desires or the need to conform to the expectations of my community, etc., etc.
“Humility” is not listed among the Gal 5:22-23 “fruits of the Spirit”, so I don’t suppose we can charge these people with pride or unspirituality. Perhaps it’s simply the imperatives of their positions within the Evangelical world-system, reinforced by the imperatives of the Evangelical mind-set itself.
We onlookers, though, can treasure these admissions in our hearts, and keep them in mind when evaluating future cases of appeal to human authority.
I’ve often been struck by the parallels between Fundagelical ideology and Islam.
Like I related above, “Nothing gets Old-Fashioned faster than Over-Relevance.”
Chesterton explained it as “going Relevant” fixes the Gospel to Time, and ages with anything else in Time until it passes away. No Staying Power.
Anyone remember Rowan & Martin’s Laugh-In of the Sixties – Groovy, Man!
Now imagine if Laugh-In presented itself as a pretentious Dead Serious Gospel – the Answer to Life, the Universe, and Everything for all time – instead of just a topical comedy revue.
Is that the source of the Prepper Filk “I Build my Hope on nothing less than Freeze-Dried Food and Smith & Wesson”?
Rubbing up against the Alpha hoping some of the Alpha’s scent will rub off on them.
Could RM have been more courageous? – Probably.
Without jeopardizing his current employment? – Doubtful.
Did he go further than most in his tribe to work against racial and sexual abuse(rs)? – Yes.
I have absolutely no sympathy for complementarianism/patriarchy/female submissionism and I found Moore’s past statements regrettable, to say the least. But he seems to have quite the learning process behind him, and – while his wife and himself cared for an abuse victim – experienced first hand what it means to go against the calvigelical/fundygelical faction in the SBC. So I would at least give him the benefit of the doubt.
You can read his (later leaked) letter to the ERLC staff and trustees here: https://religionnews.com/2021/06/02/russell-moore-to-erlc-trustees-they-want-me-to-live-in-psychological-terror/
Same for a letter he sent to JD Greear: https://baptistblog.files.wordpress.com/2021/06/rdm-final-letter.pdf
Seems like he got the full load of “christian love” from the CBN/founders faction.
Yes. Similarly, the pearl-clutching over couples working by consensus. Why on God’s green earth should we tell capable adults NOT to seek consensus in their marriages?
I’m reminded of a conversation with a dear relative some time ago. She admonished me to submit unilaterally to my husband’s preferences on something where we didn’t see eye to eye (which he would not have expected or wanted me to do, btw). But a short while later we discussed how the elder board of her church constitutionally has to be unanimous for any decision to take effect. She sincerely did not see the double standard.
Sarah (aka Wild Honey),
Yes. Part of the reason, I think, why hierarchical structures are so problematic spiritually. Even people who seem to be benefiting from them are being subtly harmed, while also doing great harm to others.
Russell Moore “Theologian”. Ha, ha, ha…..
Dee I got to say. You sure are using this word broadly.
Comlementarians complain all the time that couples in complementarian churches live by egalitarian rules in thrir real-life marriages.
– Maybe, because they have found out the hard way that complementarianism doesn’t work as a decision-making method.
– Maybe, because common sense tells them that between two people who are in full use of their mental faculties, decisions “by fiat” do not lead to good outcomes.
– Maybe, because they are “selfish” enough to want to be happy with their spouse.
– Maybe, because they have seen the good complementarian Stepford wives, and neither men nor women see that as desirable for their relationship.
🙂 🙂 🙂
Ouch. Uffda. Oyvey. Yikes. Blimey. AhyeeAh. Etc.
I wouldn’t pretend to say in this context or similar contexts whether an apology is in order. I’ll leave it up to the persons involved.
But an explanation would be helpful. An explanation in theological terms would be helpful to everyone.
Without an explanation in theological terms along with a testimony, so to speak, people may be left wondering.
The first time I heard RM speak, he talked about how he felt when he heard Al Mohler speak for the first time. He had been a legislative aid in Congress for a Southern Democrat. He was in seminary and he heard Mohler and said, “I want to do that.”
And he did. He got his PhD at Southern Seminary and he landed a job there. AND as part of the job, he was the spokesman for the Council for Biblical Manhood and Womanhood. So it’s obvious why his positions at that time sounded as they did.
Then he moved to Nashville and led the ERLC. When public events occurred that required him to address new issues, he moved to address those issues and left the old issues and rhetoric behind.
Then the CT job opened up, and that required a different profile. Not the Southern Seminary profile or the ERLC profile, but an even broader profile, and now RM fits that profile.
Still yet, his current side job is at the University of Chicago as a Pritzger fellow (named after the uber wealthy Pritzger family). That program is run by Obama’s campaign advisor David Axelrod. RM lecturers the students on various topics but the lectures are not available to the public.
This is an even different profile.
People change. It’s a fact of life. Nothing wrong with that.
People may forget that PBS liberal icon Bill Moyers was raised a Southern Baptist and got a degree from Southwestern Baptist Theological Seminary. I never heard him explain why he changed. He just admitted one time to coming to a different way of seeing and believing.
Could it be that people, even people who appear as stalwart theologians leading a movement, are more malleable than we believe. And that the things we say we hold dear are subject to being jettisoned when the right mix of maturity, life experience, social pressure, and opportunity come along? Who knows.
I don’t see RM, or most people, as craven opportunists. Just people on a journey.
Still, I believe some explanation, accounting, and testimony along the way would be beneficial to all. Both new friends and causes, and former friends and causes.
I predict that within 5 years RM will not be at CT. But he will move to the NYT or WAPO or some other similar publication. I think he will evolve further. Perhaps even out of the evangelical fold. Beth Moore will move in similar directions.
But I do not ever think he, or she, will feel compelled to explain or apologize.
But I believe Driscoll was mentioned in this post somewhere.
But does anyone know of anybody who has done a review of Driscoll’s Real (according to him) Romance?
There is a lot of good theology in those old hymns, Jeffrey. When the New Calvinists took over the SBC, they revised the Baptist hymnal removing a lot of the songs you sang in your childhood – songs that didn’t agree with the tenets of reformed theology, songs that mentioned salvation was available to “All”, etc.
Now, if we could just get the NeoCal crowd to read the red in the Gospels! The teachings of Christ are absolute truth as opposed to the teachings and traditions of mere men … after all, Jesus said “I am the Way, the Truth, and the Life.”
Mark 9:7 Then a cloud formed, overshadowing them, and a voice came out of the cloud, “This is My beloved Son, listen to Him!”
This verse is about Jesus. Nothing like this happened for Paul, Peter, John.
But the neocals love the words of Paul and use them to subvert the words of Jesus. It’s nothing but a power grab.
“Do Theologians Like Russell Moore Ever Apologize for Theological Blunders of the Past?”
We’ve talked around this a bit. As one who has observed multiple blunders by NeoCal theologians, allow me to answer that question: “No.”
“Moore has undergone a theological transformation although we don’t know yet to what extent.”
If his transformation extends far enough that his theology comes into line with the Truth, the whole Truth, and nothing but the Truth, then we may see a genuine apology (repentance) for his past transgressions of promoting aberrant belief and practice. When he ceases to be less theologian and more Christian, there is hope … the same hope in Christ that we all have.
Another possibility, which I’ve observed more than once: a decent person will generally treat their spouse the way they would want to be treated- as a fellow capable adult. In other words, an equal.
If folks complain that their model of doing relationships isn’t working as intended when people follow the golden rule, something is not right. Perhaps Moore is working this out. Better late than never, I suppose.
When the New Calvinist movement began to sweep through my area like a bull in a china shop, planting reformed churches and taking over non-Calvinist churches by stealth and deception, it was clear from their pulpit messages that they were more fond of Paul than Jesus. They camped out in Paul’s epistles, while ignoring the Gospels. When I had opportunity, I advised some of the young reformers that if they read Paul first, they might read Jesus wrong … but if they read Jesus first, the writings of Paul would come into perspective. Unfortunately, they had become so indoctrinated by NeoCal idols (Piper et al.) that they looked as this old man like a raccoon caught in car headlights. It’s been sad to see so many young folks fall into this trap. When the NeoCal bubble breaks (and it will), they will be left confused and disillusioned.
“ But the neocals love the words of Paul ”
The men have conclude (colluded?) that Jesus is the gospel for the men, and Paul is the gospel for the women……. at least in their dreams.
“Do unto others as you would have them do unto you” ……
Question for the comp/pats where’s that “unless those ‘others’ are of the opposite sex” part???
Did one of you guys accidentally hit the delete key when you were typing the words of Jesus???
A learning curve is great, is perhaps normal in a normal context; (criminally responsible adults … are not really on a learning curve).
IAC, doesn’t the Bible say teachers are held to a higher standard?
So when teachers expect 1. followers, 2. to make money on their false teaching and 3. reverence without realism about their false teaching, it’s a little over the top.
Is this idolatry? Maybe, maybe not. But pride is the deadliest of sins, according to God. The prideful religious elite who could do no wrong executed God’s Son. Their stooge took his own life.
Slippery slope – the teaching gig without knowing what you are doing.
Have them the woman do unto you the guy as YOU the guy would have them the woman do unto you the guy.
Do unto them the woman as You the guy would have yourself the guy do unto them the woman.
All about YOU the guy. What YOU the guy want.
Nothing about what the other person, the woman, wants. They, the woman, has no say, no wants.
There must be a more accurate term for this than complementarianism.
Yes, Dee sure knows how to put forth the current topics, with appropriate titles. Spot on. (Todd, too.)
What everyone sees but Polite Society is just too jaded to discuss but thinks about it anyway.
Then it shows up at TWW … and it’s like, “What in the world? Why do we have our heads in the sand? We gotta talk…” and there it goes, post plus comments breaking the scene wide open.
The unmentionables go full on public for all to acknowledge and consider.
Church, why do we put up with this stuff? Rhetorical question.
Church can be such a fool’s paradise. Time to sharpen the saw, tune the piano, prune the overgrowth, so to speak.
Not Moore, not Piper, not Mohler, et al. … listen to Jesus!
Read the red, trust Christ, and pray that the Holy Spirit will lead you to Truth.
Indeed! It’s high time to turn this thing around. So little of church these days is Church.
Oracle at Delphi,
Do you think he’ll run for office?
Prolly the norm.
But not Jesus and His disciples.
These men elevated to high places bring to mind the story of Gladys Aylward serving in China. The Mission Board rejected her. LOL. Very foolish of them. She went anyway. In the end, they saw their grave error right in front of them. Did they apologize? Doubt it.
Psalm 2: Our Lord in Heaven sits up there and laughs at the leadership of men in this world. Laughs.
I’m not impressed with these guys on theo-pedestals. I’m not impressed with myself either and I am no theologian. Personally, I’m impressed with Jesus.
He has no political constituency assembled in a tidy jurisdiction. I can’t think of a congressional district or state he could win.
But he will be very politically active. And probably not on the Conservative side.
He made a name as a NeverTrumper. If Trump wins the nomination, he’ll rev that back up.
But if DeSantis wins, I believe Moore will find reasons not to support him, and he will continue to try and woo Christians away from the GOP.
Long time Moyers fan here.
I was raised Lutheran in the Germanic-Danish culture of Southeastern Wisconsin and I’ve changed quite a bit.
I guess real life and age were the agents of that change.
I could never understand the obsession with Paul in both reformed and non-reformed circles.
Yes. Thoughtful journalism.
Gladys Aylward didn’t need any Mission Board. She obeyed God. God cleared a path for her and she fulfilled her mission.
Who needs mission boards, theobros, jaded Polite Society journalism, and the rest of the gang that elevate themselves, cash big paychecks, and collect big favors?
Gladys Aylward, George Muller, and CT Studd didn’t need these guys.
Ps. 2 And God laughs at the men on top, while He goes on with His little people in action. Anna and Simeon saw Jesus. So did Mary in the garden.
What does it look like from the Ivory Tower? Well, apparently, they don’t see Jesus.
Boots on the ground walk with Jesus.
The fact that CT does a very poor job of exposing the graft, grift, and grab of religious leaders makes it meaningless. The Houston Chronicle, WAPO, NYT, and the New Yorker do better.
CT plays to their benefactors. All about $$$ so keeping a neutral lukewarm message, but then spit out as distasteful and inappropriate. CT Polite Society would deem the truth as distasteful. No, lukewarm is distasteful.
Good journalism traces the steps from complementarianism to criminality. From authoritarianism to graft, grift, and grab. Good journalism, which is a far cry from Polite Society.
She certainly should be honored for her service. IMO The SBC Missionary Board would never allow Lottie moon to be a SBC missionary today.
Yes, there is. That’s why Moore et al preferred the word “patriarchy.” IMO the whole idea is distasteful and not faithful to the example of Jesus. But if one does believe such things, it is at least honest to just say patriarchy, rather than “hard complementarianism” or whatever christianese doublespeak euphemism is in vogue.
Some theobros are “honest” for the sake of being provocateurs. I don’t get the sense Moore is like that. I don’t know much about him, actually, except that he once wrote the sort of stuff cited above, and more recently left the SBC in protest over its mishandling of sexual abuse. Based on that, might he be consistent enough to actually change his mind? I don’t know, and if he does change I don’t think he deserves any fanfare for it. I’m more curious what a genuine change of heart and apology from a career churchman like him would look like. I can’t think of any recent examples.
“Heresy” comes to mind
Nor Annie Armstrong. Yet, the NeoCals still use their names to pull in millions of dollars each year via the “Annie Armstrong Easter Offering” and “Lottie Moon Christmas Offering.” When the new reformers took over the SBC, for the first time in my life as a Southern Baptist, I was sad to see those offering envelopes in the church pews … knowing that the funds would be used to advance theology more than missions.
They’ve had old Paul saying things he never said.
I wonder know if 100% of these offerings goes to missions? I have my doubts.
Wow, so politics is important to me.
I am confused I thought we did not discuss politics on this blog?
When buying real estate overseas is called “missions“, when diverting things domestically for church plants that involve buying more real estate and financing seminary graduates is calles “missions“, when a whole host of projects that are getting financing can be put under the umbrella of “missions“, and when there is precious little transparency, accountability, and oversight before the contributors regarding funds put in and how they are spent and what constitutes “missions“ when determining allocations, the percentages can conceivably remain high.
I was taught from Sunbeams on in the SBC that you read Jesus to understand the rest of the NT, and then read the NT in toto to understand the OT.
Today in the SBC the OT is what rules, and red letter Bibles are verboten.
It seems to me what is feared most of all is a real personal relationship with Jesus Christ. What they substitute is God in a box of their making, which is a definition of idol.
With the real deal we were all over the spectrum in our theologies and politics and beliefs. The core was a saving relationship with JESUS.
Not so much anymore.
Because they see EVERYTHING as Power Struggle.
(Just like Dobson in The Strong Willed Child and the dachshund beatdown incident.)
Dom or Sub, Top or Bottom, Hold the Whip or Feel the Whip, nothing else.
Tom, before Moore got so deeply into religion, he worked as an aide to a US Rep.. that rep. was a democrat, and if I recall correctly, Moore was a registered democrat at the time.
I’m not going all political here ….. I’m just sharing info about RM.
When I heard about how he (Dobson) abused a little dog, I cried, and then anger and rage took over:
…”Vengeance is mine; I will repay, saith the Lord.”
I think it’s different when people are teaching and preaching in a certain vein, expecting people to listen and obey. I believe they do have a responsibility to explain and/or apologize if people were hurt by their teaching. After all, they are claiming God’s authority about what they preach and teach.
“Do unto others as you would have them do unto you” certainly covers being prideful and arrogant toward others.
The Bible says to look at the fruit, right? The fruit of patriarchy has been:
–not a return to God
–full of greed
–full of pride
–lacking in accountability
–has gone so far as men claiming they can make the same judgments of salvation as God
–turned decent men into arrogant and illogical bullies
Whatever is “right”, I don’t think patriarchy is it.
dee, you should try ProWritingAid instead of Grammarly. I noticed Grammarly had been having issues, too.
And this is the problem. Just believing that you have to always win is going to create struggle where it doesn’t have to be. And they can’t always win against each other, but is it just me, or do you not hear them ever talk about that?
You nailed it!
I’d like to add a few of things to that bowl of fruit:
abuse, the covering up of abuse, protection of abusers, support of abusers, condemnation of abuse victims, and an undying commitment to upholding and glorifying a system that makes all of that fruit so easy to grow.
Interesting article on his path largely culled from his perspective:
More and more people are leaving that system, and that’s a good thing.
“ More and more “
More and more ……. and Moore and Moore…….
Beth Moore and Russell Moore both left the SBC.
“Do Theologians LIke Russell Moore Ever Apologize for Theological Blunders of the Past?”
I recall some pretty nasty comments on this site against people who chose not to take any covid “vaccines”.
Maybe people here need to take a look at themselves in order to verify that they have taken care of that log in their own eye, before going after any size piece of wood in the eye of someone they do not even personally know.
Does that (to win, that is) mean one always has to get their way?
Like in a marriage, the guy always gets his way?
Like in a church, the top guy (pastor) always gets his way?
Always getting one’s way is a toddler issue, when toddlers are taught that, “No, you don’t always get your way.”
Except some toddler training misses the mark. The sons of Charles and Diana reportedly would tell their nannies that by birthright, they get what they want.
Other stories: a middle school science teacher said she witnessed a dad tell his son, “Don’t listen to her, she’s a woman.”
A lower school student was the most ill-behaved at our local school and admittedly his dad had taught him to never listen to a woman, according to faith beliefs. Problem was, all the lower school teachers were women.
Piper’s church, heretell, was like this. At a certain age, women were not allowed to teach boys in Sunday School, etc. Not sure of the age bracket of when this started.
Anyway, does “win” mean always get your way, what you personally deem best, in your favor? Are some humans granted this, by God’s law, while others must, by God’s law, yield?
I will approve this one comment. Please don’t go off on your anti-vax thing.
Why should they?
It’s all been superseded by CALVIN.
CALVIN who alone Has God All Figured Out.
Fee, Fi, Fo, Fum.
I smell a “JESUS Is My Vaccine” anti-Vaxxer.
Like all those social media traces over at the Herman Cain Awards subreddit.
Since the days of Jenner and his small-pox vaccine, vaccines in general have been a great boon to humankind.
I will never, in fact I cannot understand why any thinking person would refuse a life-saving vaccine.
My comment was concerning the past disparaging comments posted on your site towards those who made an “anti-vax thing” choice not to get a shot.
If you can show me where I have made similar derogatory comments (like those above by Headless & Muff) about those who chose the shot, show me; and I will apologize for such un-Christlike behaviour.
Otherwise, as I see it, either apologize for attributing motive to my comment (that falls under ‘Thou shalt not bear false witness’), and apply an “equal weight and measure” (Prov. 20:10 &23) to Headless Unicorn Guy & Muff Potter; or ban me from your site.
Over the years, I have left two churches that played the ‘You’re not in the right clique’ game. I thought that this group was different. If I am mistaken, so be it.
Your website, your decision.
That is how they use it, yes, though the actual thought processes vary a bit. Most claim that because God is a hierarchy (Father in charge) then all things must follow that pattern for there to be “peace” in the home and church. Anyone who questions the leader of the heirarchy and their decisions is not being submissive enough and sinning. Bruce Ware teaches that women aren’t even wholly human and implies that any woman who acts like she wants autonomy or simply acts human is going against God’s design.
Many of them don’t really seem to understand the concept of compromise, even though compromise would still be a necessary skill. I know some who think that God will instill one of them to be in charge of the country in a theocracy.
There is really no peace, though, because it’s all a bunch of balarky. Everyone wants autonomy over themselves, and just because some men want to control others doesn’t mean that is God’s design. In fact, that belief seems to go directly against Scripture. Though they will change the subject on you if you try to point that out.
Who is Bruce Ware?
Never mind. Considering his “teaching”, no need to know.
Just another empty voice from the Dark Side passing in the night. Small projecting as big via false “theology” … the god of maleness.
Ps.2 God laughs.
There is no clique here, and I make my decisions based on my reasons, some of which I won’t share with you. But, once again, you made this about yourself and how you were treated. Everyone who comments here has been in situations where they weren’t in the “right clique.” You are not alone in that regard.
Sometimes it is worth staying and working within the clique to start a new clique. It can work. I know because I have done it. I have only left a church due to abuse, bad theology, or a rampant Calvinista.
Please join the current conversation and state your thoughts on it. You are welcome to do so.,
Perhaps a clique seeking truth as opposed to:
Polite Society denying.
Religious orgs covering up to circle the wagons with their dudetheobros.
Religious leaders grifting.
Patriarchies silencing witnesses with evidence that they don’t want to hear.
Isn’t it astonishing what you (generic you) can manufacture from the pages of the Bible?
I don’t think people come to TWW to join a clique. The folks who post regularly have different experiences, different beliefs, different current practices, and different ideas about what should happen to churches.
TWW informs people about abuse, and equips them to see it and ideally combat it. That’s a lofty goal, and unfortunately the Anointed Ones give TWW plenty of material.
Does anyone visit TWW to experience total agreement? They would be disappointed. Do we expect to convert others to their viewpoints? Again, I don’t see that happening.
Surely, though, we all learn from one another. It’s particularly valuable to have a civil forum where we can notice our assumptions and think about them, maybe for the first time.
Should be “to our viewpoints.”
On a related note, please don’t listen to Pink Floyd while attempting to comment, not even if you are celebrating the 50th anniversary of Dark Side of the Moon.
Like the “SLM” word root in Semitic languages, where nouns with the same root have related meanings.
Punch one set of vowels into “SLM” and you have “Salaam” (Peace).
Punch another set in and you have “Islam” (Submission).
So Peace comes when the Weak Submit to the Strong?
[sarc]I assume Bruce Ware is MALE by God’s design?
(Bottom line, this is Projection.*)
However, we begin with the pattern you mention and that we believe we find in the Bible: God is in charge so we all submit directly to God (thanks to the saving work of Jesus and the indwelling of the Holy Spirit in each of us, no middleman*) then live in peace with God and fellow humans.
But somehow (via arrogance, evil intent?) one gender, male* (and one race?, so white male?), projects and inserts himself* into the God – and everyone else but my demographic relationship* — as you guessed it, God’s special agent.*
How convenient for these men.
The pattern that one should follow is for all to submit to God. No hierarchy among humans, among people of God.* We can learn from each other but we submit to God alone.* Ps. 62, my salvation comes from God alone.*
The “I’ll just put myself and my demographic in there in charge of everyone else and fix everything for God” (with contrived heretical theology to boot) is overreach as they project themselves as agents of God.*
So per Scripture we run fast the other direction away from the culture and rule of these men with their tag along women.*
*As the Houston Chronicle notes, the results of these “I’m special, fixing everyone else for God” IS A DISASTER. Which is why their COVER-UP IS MASSIVE.
God has no agents, no middlemen, no fixers. None. Lots of false special agents running around in churches these days, though. Lots. Legions.
I don’t think there were many “white males” wandering about Judea in Biblical times and the idea that patriarchy (or whatever you want to call it) came to life when “white males” got hold of it years later ignores human history.
There were special agents around however – they were called apostles, pastors, teachers, prophets, priests – and they were commissioned by God the Father, Son and Holy Spirit. And there was also a kind of hierarchy, approved by God, which didn’t/doesn’t diminish the equality of the saints.
HUG pointed out that the semantic root of peace has a number of meanings, depending on the insertion of vowels and grammatical function of the word.
“ שָׁלֵם (šālēm I), intransitive q. be finished, to have satisfaction; pi. repay, reward, fulfill a vow, recompense, retribute, to make complete, to finish; hi. make peace, fulfill, surrender (#8966); שָׁלוֹם (šālôm), nom. peace, friendship, happiness, well-being, prosperity, health, luck, kindness, salvation (#8934); שִׁלּוּם (šillûm), #8936); שְׁלָם (šelām), nom. agreement (#8967); שֶׁלֶם (šelem), nom. agreement (hapleg. in Ezra 4:7; #8968); שָׁלֵם (šālēm II), adj. uninjured, safe, complete, peaceable (#8969); שִׁלֻּמָה (šillumâ), verbal nom. repayment, retribution (#8974).”
“ ANE The vb. שָׁלֵם is well attested in all cognate languages. In Akk. š / salāmu has a comparable wide range of meanings relating to the act or state of well-being, of being intact, safe, or complete, and to acts of repayment, reward, and retribution (cf. CAD 206–23). The nom. šalamu refers commonly to physical or communal health and well-being, and the adj. šalmu means healthy, sound, safe, in good condition. In Ugar. the vb. šlm and the nom. occur with the meanings have peace, health. In the D-stem the vb. can also mean repay (cf. UT, 490–91).
OT The group שָׁלוֹם represents one of the most prominent theological concepts in the OT. The underlying meaning is usually sought in the usage of the vb. שָׁלֵם”
(From ‘The New International Dictionary of Old Testament Theology and Exegesis’, Van Gemeren, editor, where there are lengthy articles on the shades of meaning.).
The oldest Arabic lexicons give the meaning as “peace” and “submission to God”.
Although there might have been some “white males” back then. The oldest regiment in the British Army, The Royal Scots, have the nickname “Pontus Pilate’s Bodyguard”. They took the name during the Thirty Years’ War when a French regiment claimed seniority over them by alleging that they had been on duty at the Crucifixion . The Royal Scots’ reply was that if they had been there instead of the French, the body would not have got out of the tomb. And the name stuck!
*History fun fact
“ The Royal Scots were raised in 1633 by Sir John Hepburn when he was given a Royal Warrant to raise a Regiment to fight in France. During their extended service in France, the Royal Scots earned their nickname, ‘Pontius Pilate’s Bodyguards.’ A dispute arose between the Royals and the French Regiment of Picardy, both arguing that they deserved the coveted place on the right of the line. The French Regiment asserted that they were the senior regiment, having been on guard at the Crucifixion. The Royals claimed that had they been there too, the body would not have gone missing! The Royals have proudly maintained the nickname ever since.
Since the seventeenth century, the Royals have fought in almost every British war up to and including the Second Gulf War. This makes the Royal Scots the oldest British Regiment of Foot serving today. It is this proud tradition that we seek to capture when we recreate the actions of the Royal Scots in the War of 1812.”
Three of five of my great-uncles were in the Royal Scots and were killed in WW1.
Good point. I agree.
My POV differs. IMHO, since JC rose and granted us the Holy Spirit, each disciple is HS gifted with one of eighteen equal in rank and value gifts, 1 Cor 12, Rom 12, Eph 4.
No middleman, no special agent, with regard to rank. IMHO, Jesus died, rose, and blesses us with the Holy Spirit, to eliminate the OT middlemen, who, as today, are often a major fail or grand disappointment.
The list. Some are mentioned more than once, noted in comprising the list(s).
Pastor and giving seem to fuel many churches today. Each are mentioned only once.
If all gifts were equally allowed to function in church orgs, IMHO, it would improve our orgs.
That would also be the opinion of first century church leaders, IMHO. As you note, “Pastor” ain’t the only gift in town … the problem is, Pastor ain’t equipping, energizing, and mobilizing the other gifts as he ought. The 21st century church is so far from the New Testament model of doing church that I don’t think we will find our way back at this point. We could sure use some anointed prophets and teachers in the Body of Christ right now to set us straight about this. If all 18 of the gifts you listed were released in the average American church, it wouldn’t be able to contain the power. As it now stands, the average American church ain’t got enough power to blow the dust off a peanut.
If so, wondering why the bigtime theo honchos at all the seminaries, religious orgs, megas, and higher ed institutions aren’t citing HERESY! about complementarianism? No outcry? Are they (bigboy noncomp theobros) afraid of the comp crowd? If heresy, why not say so? Cowards.
Bruce Ware is the preeminent theology professor at Southern Baptist Theological Seminary, now retired, but I understand his theology is still being used.
Well, this is why their preferred method of theology includes the theology of takeovers and forced membership. The free will Baptists tend to be big on everyone existing together, but New Calvinists believe that anyone not under their “authority” is not saved/elect.
They took over the institutions like seminaries. I was at one when it happened. Then they force their theology by covenant agreement (or in the case of my old church, retroactively to all current members). You agree or you are excommunicated. Most only allow one leader with one viewpoint. They kicked out anyone in leadership at the institutions and churches who did not immediately fall into line. They church discipline or shun any member who questions those beliefs.
They do not coexist with other belief systems.
I should note, there has been calls of heresy, particularly with their 2016 ESV “permanent” version. But as many non New Calvinists think co-existing theology is fine as long as Christ is Lord, I think people let them slide a lot. Plus, they have a bad habit of ganging up on anyone online who critizes anything they do.
If memory is correct, didn’t Grudem get called out for trying to introduce hierarchy into the Trinity?
Make an example of one and a thousand will fall right into line bleating their Loyalty.
Or this is an example of what happened when Michael Jackson was accused of child molesting. The plaintiffs withdrew their case after getting doxxed to the MICHAEL!!! fans and their phone lines and homes came under 24/7 siege until they relented.
Because HERESY! is ALWAYS the OTHER Guy’s Theology.
Like France 1940, with the French Assembly bickering and Counting Coup on each other while the Panzers roll into Paris.
Theology like Eternal Subordination of the Son isn’t new, but has long been considered heretical. Grudem and friends definitely wanted to revive it and some of the translations of the ESV 2016 was influenced by that. Interestingly enough, the key friend of Grudem in that movement is none other than Bruce Ware…
It’s hard to fathom, it really is, that Grudem and Ware would risk all that push-back just to try and make gender-roles cast in ‘Biblical’ concrete.
Possibly because they KNOW gender roles are divinely ordained and Christian theology MUST reflect this so it is derivable from their hermeneutics (even if one changes the hermeneutics to make sure it does).
The Great Chain of Being, with boots stamping on faces all the way down from the Throne of God (The Father, NOT The Son). Kiss Up, Kick Down.
From what I’ve seen, there’s a pretty simple root of that kind of desire. I think they are truthfully rather jealous of God and the idea that someone other than them could create “absolute truth”. They want to be God, so they just make God and his theology in their own image.
I mean, they literally compare themselves to God the Father in ESS theology and then assign themselves God-like powers. Why not start a new religion instead of trying to mold yourself into one where you are NOT God? LOL
It would be as brutal a dictatorship as any that’s come down the pike.