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The gender debate on Her.meneutics

Her.meneutics has just done a series on ‘the gender debate’ in evangelical Christianity. Here’s the intro:

Submissive wife and president of the United States — an oxymoron, if you ask many journalists analyzing the faith of 2012 hopeful Michele Bachmann. …. Journalists have spent days analyzing her response, seemingly baffled that a modern woman could take the words of an ancient text so seriously.

Yet evangelicals have taken the Bible’s words about men and women very seriously …. Inter-evangelical debates have traditionally centered on whether Paul’s injunctions forbid women from leadership in ministry, and whether male-female complementarity describes a work-home delegation of “roles” between husband and wife. Today and tomorrow on Her.meneutics, we’ll hear from two prominent theologians who have carefully thought through these and other passages. The first, William J. Webb, is an egalitarian New Testament scholar noted for his “redemptive-movement” approach to the Bible. The second, Russell D. Moore, is dean of the School of Theology at the Southern Baptist Theological Seminary, as well as a pastor, writer, and blogger, and complementarian.

Both responses are well worth reading. I was pleased to see both sides able to explain their high regard for the Bible and their desire to love and empower women.

William Webb’s interview (egalitarian)

Russell Moore’s interview (complementarian)

Categories: Woman Written by Tamie

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Tamie Davis

Tamie Davis is an Aussie living in Tanzania, writing at

2 replies

  1. Agree that both cases were generously put, and didn’t engage in snark or petty argument for the sake of point-scoring. I was a bit disappointed in the quality of the comments, though :/

    I suspect that Dr Moore misunderstood the question on the CoBMW, though: I read it was being to do with “feminism-the-idea within evangicalism-the-movement”, whereas his answer seemed to address “the evangelism from feminism-the-movment[s]”. This is a shame, as I don’t think it really answers the question :(

  2. Oh, I read him as purposely side-stepping that question. Did you know he’s the new CBMW chair (or president, or head, or whatever they call it)? In light of his approach here, I wonder whether we’ll see a more irenic tone from CBMW now.

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