• Recent Articles

    Liberian Men and Women: United in Christ

    Liberian Men and Women: United in Christ With our recent conference in Colombia, and today being Liberian Independence Day, I couldn’t help but remember that this exact time last year I was in my homeland of Liberia, and how our conference theme fits exactly with the experience that I had there. Liberian women created a movement of liberation during the civil war, and after it, they are creating a movement of sustainability, peace, and equality. This movement has intense religious ties, as ordinary [Read More]

    The Scroll Links Up 7/25/14

    The Scroll Links Up 7/25/14 What an amazing week. Because of a week-long synchroblog called Faith Feminisms, the Christian blogosphere has exploded with posts about biblical gender equality. Can faith and feminism coexist? The resounding answer: YES! Not only coexist, but feminism comes out of our faith in a Lord who breaks down the walls that divide us and limit us along gender lines. There is no hierarchy in the kingdom of God. I'll highlight some posts here, but if [Read More]

    Surprised by Scripture?

    Surprised by Scripture?I'm reading N.T. Wright's latest popular installment entitled Surprised by Scripture and chapter 4, "The Biblical Case for Ordaining Women", caught my attention. Having previously read his stance, I expected not to be "surprised." Though I wasn't "shocked, amazed, stupefied, or bewildered" (all synonyms of "surprise"), I did get another picture, of sorts, about Galatians 3:28 (from which my blog's theme takes it's name, by the way). This text likely means so much more than a prima [Read More]

    CBE Founders: A Prophetic Witness and Defense against Abuse

    CBE Founders: A Prophetic Witness and Defense against AbuseThe following is adapted from the President’s Column from the Winter 2013 issue of Mutuality, titled “The Legacy Issue.” If you like what you read, consider subscribing or purchasing a CBE membership. Mimi Haddad is the president of Christians for Biblical Equality. She holds a PhD in historical theology from the University of Durham, England and an Honorary Doctorate of Divinity from Palmer Theological Seminary. Follow her on Twitter @Mimi_CBE. Religion is the most deadly tool of oppression, according to Eugene Peterson. “More people are [Read More]

    A Rose by Any Other Name...

    A Rose by Any Other Name...While growing up in the 1960s, I heard women in our neighborhood complain about being called housewives. “I am not married to a house!” they would say. Of course the term typically meant that they were wives who spent their time caring for a house and those in it. But still, it offended these women who, by the way, didn’t even consider themselves feminists or egalitarians. Being called housewives simply assigned them a label they [Read More]

    The Scroll Links Up 7/18/14

    The Scroll Links Up 7/18/14 We came across these fantastic blog posts advocating for biblical gender equality. What an encouragement. I hope you will be encouraged, too. Changing My Mind on Women in Ministry, Part 2, by Mark Moore (Missio Alliance) I know that many of you are in the same place I was. You are worried that if you change your mind on a doctrine, like the role of women in ministry, it will mean that you have sold out and [Read More]

    The Christian Walk

    The Christian Walk Some readers of The CBE Scroll will be surprised to learn of the variety of strongly-held opinions regarding who has the right of way when hiking. Hikers with an opinion are evenly divided between two primary points of view. First, many believe that when two hikers meet, the person hiking uphill has the right of way. Why? Because the uphill hiker shouldn’t have to lose and then regain momentum. Others believe the opposite, that the [Read More]

    Egalitarians and Complementarians: One Gospel, Two Worldviews

    Egalitarians and Complementarians: One Gospel, Two WorldviewsThe following is adapted from the President’s Column from the Summer 2014 issue of Mutuality, titled “Worldview.” If you like what you read, consider subscribing or purchasing a CBE membership. Mimi Haddad is the president of Christians for Biblical Equality. She holds a PhD in historical theology from the University of Durham, England and an Honorary Doctorate of Divinity from Palmer Theological Seminary. Follow her on Twitter @Mimi_CBE. Egalitarians and complementarians share much in common. We adore Jesus and serve him passionately. We are [Read More]

    Wives, 'Respect' Your Husbands

    Wives, 'Respect' Your HusbandsFrom time to time we hear of the responsibilities outlined in Ephesians 5 verses 22 - 33 concerning husbands and wives respectively. Often the language gets reduced to a catch phrase like, "women want to be loved and men need respect." It is as if this phrase defines all women and all men for all time. It is as if this phrase sums up all that is required by all women and all men. It [Read More]

    The Scroll Links Up 7/11/14

    The Scroll Links Up 7/11/14 There are so many great posts around the web proclaiming biblical equality. Here are some we noticed: 5 Ways Married Men Can Act Like Adults Around Women (Single or Not), by Luke Harms (Living the Tension) It is possible to maintain eye contact without being skeezy. If you lack the self-control to do so, it’s because you sir, are a creeper. But what’s more, you have so devalued women in your own mind that they don’t exist outside [Read More]

The Importance of History

I’ve been reading the recent issue of Priscilla Papers (Summer 2006). I have been struck by both Catherine Clark Kroeger and Philip B. Bayne’s use of history in their respective articles on 1 Corinthians 11. In Kroeger’s article she is looking at what kephalē, “head,” means in 1 Corinthians 11:3: “But I want you to […]

Stained Glass Ceiling

You would think that those liberal folks who send their daughters to their liberal mainline denominational seminaries where females fill over 50 percent of the seats would have been long successful in getting them pastorates in local churches. In a front page article in the New York Times on August 26, Neela Banerjee writes in […]

Breaking News: Female Sunday School Teacher Fired after 54 Years

Today, August 21st, the Associated Press released a tragic story from Watertown, New York (view full story). For Mary Lambert, the decision from her young pastor ended 54 years of service as a Sunday school teacher. The decision was reached after adopting a “literal interpretation” of Scripture. That passage, as you may have guessed, is […]

Devil with the Blue Dress

Sometimes the simplest conversations can turn out to be the most complicated. Take for example, the insistence of a relative of mine that a woman should accept her husband’s last name in deference to his headship. Even though I pointed out that the idea of a surname is a relatively recent invention in human history—not […]

China Correcting Imbalance

It’s wonderful, and perhaps all too rare, when countries realize their mistakes and take steps to correct them. China Daily reports that the imbalance between the numbers of boys and girls in China is growing so severe that if left unchecked there will be 25 million men in China between 2015 and 2030 with no […]

More Precious than Jewels

Kirsten tours with a theatrical production of Don Richardson’s Peace Child. In her down time, she greets people as a receptionist for our missions ministry here in Montana. As a 20 year old, she heard me teach on the value of daily Bible reading. This morning, four years later, I noticed that she was writing […]

Why Does Injustice Against Women Abound?

Poverty and injustice discriminate. And the health and well-being of women around the world suffer because of it. Many of us who live in privilege do not worry about their daughters being raped during war or being forced into prostitution. Many of us who live in privilege do not think about injustice and inequality at […]

Egalitarian Marriages Are Happier and Healthier

There is an excellent article on godswordtowomen.org called, “Empirical Data in Support of Egalitarian Marriages and A Fresh Perspective on Submission and Authority,” that reviews many scientific studies that all say that marriages that operate on the basis of equality are much more healthy than those that are hierarchical — in fact that hierarchical approaches […]

Holy Discontent

One of the problems with developing a concern (or anger!) over biblical equality is that it can hang over you like a cloud and drag you down in the dumps, make you feel moody, put other people out of sorts against you. How much more safe and sane to just attend your sweet little evangelical […]

Ideal Relationships and Metaphor: Siblings vs. Spouses?

Often the gender debate focuses narrowly on leadership and marriage, at the expense of many. But leadership and marriage are two of the highest ideals in Christian culture, right? Why would this debate be at anyone’s expense? As we live as Christians, what is the normative metaphor for relationships between men and women? Growing up […]

Best Bibles?

The Evangelical Christian Publishing Association (ECPA) has announced this year’s finalists for their Christian Book Awards. Normally, I do not pay attention to these types of awards, because I like to judge a book for myself rather than take somebody else’s word for it whether the book is good or not. However, a couple of […]

Misleading Phrase: “Spiritual Leader of the Home”

I’m curious if someone on the blog could help. Ephesians 5 and 1 Corinthians 11 talk about the husband being the “head.” Fine. Great. But I’m curious about when (historically) people began using the nomenclature “spiritual leader.” What is the root of that phrase? Did this crop up in the 1950′s? Or earlier or later? […]

Leaving Father and Mother

Just wondering why the Bible says that “a man leaves his father and mother and cleaves to his wife” rather than “a woman leaves her father and mother…..” In most cultures it has always been the woman who leaves (or is ‘given away’) and cleaves to the man, which I would suggest is more consistent […]

(Trans)Gender and Science

In a Wall Street Journal article today, “He, Once a She, Offers Own View On Science Spat” [July 13, 2006; p. B1], Sharon Begley reports that Dr. Ben Barres has a specially unique viewpoint on the issue of whether women make good scientists. Barres, in today’s issue of Nature, strongly disagrees with the “Larry Summers […]

What Do Women Get Out of It?

Let’s try to concentrate for a moment on the complementarian viewpoint as the more recent theologians have framed it and not on the more fringe (and mostly earlier) elements that are anti-education for women. I think that these more recent formulations of the hierarchical position still have in mind some golden picture of the “holy […]

Women, Education and the Ministry

In the first century, women lacked the education available to men. This was true for both Jews and Gentiles. No matter where one presently lands in the discussion about women in the ministry; this fact, everyone agrees upon. Craig Keener stated this in Discovering Biblical Equality, “Learning in the Assemblies” [p. 169]. He writes, “More […]

We All Choose Our Own Experts

The truism of my title relates to previous comments on another post re taking more notice of authority figures than “ordinary” folks. This is another area where the church looks and acts too much like the world where power and prestige rule. That is why Jesus said such radical things as “the last shall be […]

Symbols, Authority and Selling Ideas

Authority is always an interesting topic in Christian discussions. Arizona State Professor of Social Psychology, Robert Cialdini wrote about authority and psychological dynamics in the 1980′s. Among other dynamics, Cialdini found that authority relationships influence buying practices among consumers. When authority figures endorse products, they sell. The current complementarian/egalitarian discussion has centered around this discussion […]

Beauty, Cosmetic Surgery and Christians

A missionary friend spoke with me this last week about beauty and the cosmetic industry. While on sabbatical at the University in Winnipeg, he wrote about this topic for one of his courses. I was intrigued and quite provoked to think about this a lot more. He spoke with me about various psychological and emotional […]

FREEDOM! In Christ

When the messiah comes, says the Old Testament, he will “proclaim freedom for the captives.” (Is. 61:1 TNIV) Jesus the Messiah came, but he brought something better than the expected freedom from foreign domination: instead, he was interested in making people’s spirits free. Jesus himself said, “Very truly I tell you, everyone who sins is […]

How will Church Historians Evaluate our Generation

Let’s look at our generation from the view of church historians. I think they will simultaneously wince and praise us. I think they will wince as they consider evangelical theologians holding to a subordinationist view of the Trinity and receiving a broad complementarian audience. I think they will further wince as they think of process […]

Who was Maude Cary?

Hailing from Kansas, Maude Cary went to Morocco in 1901 and worked as a single missionary for 50 years there. How was 50 years of sacrificial living rewarded at her funeral? Ruth Tucker writes that her obituary read, “a small handful of people, seven of whom were ministers, attended the funeral. There were only two […]

Changing the Mindset

Recently there was a blog post regarding preferential treatment given to men, even by those who espouse egalitarian beliefs. How can this happen ? It is very evident that the cultural mindset over such a long time is deeper than many first imagined and so it is no wonder than it keeps resurfacing in the […]

Called to India

If you have surfed the CBE website, you may have come across information about the upcoming symposium in Bangalore. The symposium will address gender issues in the church, specifically how men and women are equally dependent on one other in the home, workplace, and church. This event is co-sponsored by CBE, Pilgrim Partners, South Asia […]

An observation over dinner

My wife and I spent a year of missionary service in the gorgeous southeast asian city of Singapore in 1990. While there, we ate dinner one night with a senior missions couple who have been widely used and are vocal egalitarians. They peppered me repeatedly with Bible questions and vitually ignored the presence of my […]