Wednesday, May 27, 2009

A bit about me

I thought that before I continue posting, I'd let you know where I'm coming from on this issue.
I went to a Uniting Church during my primary school years, a Baptist Church during High School. At that time I made a conscious decision to follow Jesus at an SUFM while my family was on holidays. When I went to uni in Sydney I started going to an Anglican Church and I have stayed at Anglican Churches ever since.
I see that there is debate on these issues going on in Anglican Churches and other denominations in Sydney as well. Two basic sides of the debate seem to have formed - but I (I think with quite a few people) am uncomfortable in different ways with both of these sides.
What I love about the complementarian side is that they are trying to remain true to the text (see for example Grudem and Piper's Blue book). The Bible remains the source of authority and they attempt to submit every area of their life and theology to it. I certainly applaud that. What I fear is that this side may have overread some portions of text, to find something in there which the author may not have intended. I'm not clear on what I mean about that, hence my own investigations into the text, which I hope to continue posting. They also may downplay the role of culture in interpreting the text on this issue.
What I love about the egalitarian (and often liberal) side is that they want to value both sexes equally, in their theology and practise - and they believe that God values them equally too. They also understand the importace of understanding biblical and present day culture in their interpretation. However, many books which I have read from this perspective (for example this book) seem not to have as high a standard of scholarship as those on the complementarian side.
What I don't appreciate about this debate is that often people are intrenched in their own side, and the debate becomes very partisan (see the reviews for what I call "the orange book" edited by Pierce, Groothuis and Fee which tries to pursue an evangelical middle ground - the reviews are quite polarised). I won't point you to some blog posts which I recently stumbled upon which have been far less gracious in their tone when discussing women being invited to a speaking event.
So I mainly want to deal with the bible, and find out as much as I can about the relevant texts, but if you have any recommendations of articles or books to read, I'd be happy for you to comment on that as well.

1 comment:

  1. I hear ya! There is a great lack of grace in the debate so often. I've found myself guilty of responding in kind at times.

    Have you come across the Complegelitarian blog, as well as John Hobbins & Suzanne McCarthy? And Katharine Bushnell etc?