Adam’s and Eve’s work, Orvieto cathedral façade, Orvieto, Italy

Blog Posts About Women, Gender, & Faith

My Thoughts on Gender

By | Blog Interviews With Writers, Gender & Faith, Justice, Women | No Comments

We Talk Different is a podcast on culture, race, ethnicity, gender, politics, and theology. Recently my friend Jurrita and I were featured on the podcast talking about gender and faith and race. You can get the scoop at iTunes.

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The “Chrisitanity and Gender” Edition – 3.14.17 – Part II The WTD team wraps up their conversation with Jur… 3/13/2017 Free View in iTunes
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The “Christianity and Gender” Edition – 3.7.16 – Part I This week the WTD Team brings in the real intelle… 3/6/2017 Free View in iTunes
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Vindicating the Vixens

By | Gender & Faith, Women, Writing | No Comments

On March 23 at DTS, I moderated a panel discussion with Dr. Glenn Kreider, Sarah Bowler, Sharifa Stevens, Dr. Timothy Ralston, and Karla Zazueta about women in the Bible whom we have either vilified or marginalized. Vindicating the Vixens (Kregel Academic, forthcoming) is the result of a diverse team of 16 male and female theologians who’ve partnered to take a second look at vilified and marginalized women in the Bible, and we got some of the contributors in Dallas together to talk about our findings. The church has often viewed women’s stories through sexist eyes, resulting in a range of distortions. In this panel discussion, three of us DTS profs and three graduates talk about the women we explored.

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Protestants at 500 Years: The Best-Known Female Reformer

By | Marriage, Women | No Comments

In this year, which marks the five-hundredth anniversary of the start of the Protestant Reformation, many are focusing on the male reformers. But Germany is also focused on some of the females.  Though quite influential, they are often forgotten. And we can learn much from their lives. I’m thinking of one in particular.

Come back in time with me to about 1499 in what we know today as eastern Germany—then called Saxony. And picture a girl born to a noble family. When she turns five, her mother dies and her father sends her to a cloister.  There she receives a nun’s education.

When she is about 24, she and some of her friends—aware of the reform movement and dissatisfied with their lives in the monastery—seek to flee. Like so many others, they haven’t  taken vows of celibacy due to calling, but due to a parent’s decision (sometimes for reasons of …

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Spiritual Mothers: A Guest Post

By | Gender & Faith, Women | No Comments

Today I’m happy to feature Kat Armstrong here as a guest post-er. Kat is a former student and savvy business woman (Baby Bow Tie) who co-founded Polished Ministries, an outreach to young business women. When I read this post she wrote on her own blog, I asked if I could run it again here: 

spiritualmothers

My heart feels like it’s going to burst through my chest. I’ve tried working on other projects this weekend, projects I’m really excited about with looming deadlines, and yet I keep coming back to this keep-me-up-at-night message: We need all Christ-followers intentionally investing in younger generations now.

Maybe it’s the Irish/Latino mix I’ve got in my blood, but I tend to get fired up about lots of things. But make no mistake, this is not your average Kat-plea to see again afresh the gospel of Christ, in general. This is urgent and specific.…

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7 Views on the Role of Women w/in the Inerrancy Camp

By | Gender & Faith, Life In The Body, Women | No Comments

My Engage blog post for October 25:

I’m speaking at an event today at which I’m outlining seven different views on the role of women held by those who hold to the verbal plenary inspiration of scripture:

1. TRADITIONALISTS

Believe women are more easily deceived than men, but also masters at deceiving. Women are ontologically inferior to men at created level. “Women are the devil’s gateway.” — Tertullian. Augustine, Aquinas, John Knox, etc.

COMPLEMENTARIANS (spectrum of about 4 views)

Women equal before God, but in some form of hierarchy w/ men/ husbands. Authority = the issue w/ several views on the public ministry of women:

2. Male “headship” – all men = “head” over all women. Speak of “male headship.” Innate. At creation. Head = synonym for leader.

3. Male “headship” in the church and home – husband head of wife + elders head over women in church and …

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Why Study Church History?

By | Women | 2 Comments

A few weeks ago, Dr. Glenn Kreider (we both teach at DTS) and I were in Austin talking with Jennie Allen, founder of IF:Gathering, to film segments included in the new study they are offering—Anno Domini or “AD.” AD focuses on the Book of Acts and what followed—the 2,000-year history of the church, the bride of Christ. You can sign up for the free 8-week course.

Below I spend about 30 seconds talking about why I encourage people to study this topic:

The following video lasts about five minutes, and we talk more in depth about the value of understanding our history.  This is the intro to lesson one.

I hope you’ll consider joining in. Click here and scroll down to get started and read the encouraging responses to this video.…

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A Great Film

By | Arts, Beauty, Justice, Life In The Body, Marriage, Women | No Comments

imgresDefying the Nazis: The Sharps’ War tells the story of a US couple’s courageous private war against the Nazis in 1939.

The Sharps, a Unitarian minister and his wife, are two of only five Americans honored as Righteous Among the Nations in Israel’s Yad Vashem. You can watch their story online at PBS until October 5 by clicking on the above link.

This film is the latest from Ken Burns, known for his style of using archival footage and photographs in documentaries. Defying the Nazis is an incredible story of great personal sacrifice.

In this film you will see many similarities to the current social environment in America. How does an unlikely candidate rise quickly to power? How does racism thrive? Why don’t people care for refugees? Is national security more important that children’s lives? We’ve been here before.

When you finish, read Auden’s poem, September 1, 1939. We …

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On the ESV’s New Rendering of Genesis 3:16 (“Contrary Wives”)

By | Gender & Faith, Marriage, Women | No Comments

In light of the volumes written about recent changes in the ESV, I thought I’d offer a few reflections on the interpretation of this text (Gen. 3:16), especially because the verse is foundational to many people’s understanding of gender roles. First, the change:

Previous ESV translation of Genesis 3:16: Your desire shall be for your husband, and he shall rule over you.

New text of Genesis 3:16: Your desire shall be contrary to your husband, but he shall rule over you.

First, an underlying reason for some of the mistrust: The ESV committee had pretty conservative complementarians on it. I’ve identified about five different kinds of complementarians, and many on this committee are at the traditionalist end. And here’s the rub: They included no women translators. And no egalitarians. In a world growing more aware of the blindness inherent in homogenous groups, this seems odd—especially coming from people who …

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Is Jesus Really a Friend to Women?

By | Women | No Comments

I received this question recently: If Jesus was so “for” women, why in Luke 14:25–27, when addressing the crowd (which obviously had women in it), did he basically exclude them or communicate they were not worth considering or addressing when he said “wife” and not “husband”?

Great question. First, let’s look at the text in question: Luke 14:25–27:

Now large crowds were accompanying Jesus, and turning to them he said,  ‘If anyone comes to me and does not hate his own father and mother, and wife and children, and brothers and sisters, and even his own life, he cannot be my disciple.  Whoever does not carry his own cross and follow me cannot be my disciple . . . .”

The person who wrote the question wonders why Jesus, when speaking of the cost of following him, exhorts husbands to hate wives, but does not tell wives to …

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Complementarians on Women in Ministry: Diverse Images

By | Gender & Faith, Marriage, Women | 2 Comments
Synogogue - blindfolded woman in 13th century ivory set, Descent from the Cross.

Synogogue – blindfolded woman in 13th century ivory set, Descent from the Cross.

My Engage post this week: 

I read recently that when boards of directors have both male and female representation, they make better decisions. Doesn’t that sound consistent with Genesis 1:28? Not to everybody. Especially not those at the conservative end of the complementarian camp (and it is a very wide camp with a lot of difference inside).

The word “complementarian” gets underlined in red in a Word doc, because it’s a word people made up. And they did so to emphasize that men and women are complementary.

Some say “egalitarians [hereafter E’s] believe men and women have no gender differences and that complementarians [hereafter C’s] believe in the beautiful design of God for gender differences.” But honestly? That’s baloney. In terms of their view of the existence of gender differences, both camps believe men and women

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My Latest Book: A Short History of Ephesus

By | Books, Women | No Comments

Book Cover Ephesus -4The city of Ephesus had great significance in the ancient world from its beginnings in the eighth century BC through the fall of Rome. Books of scripture were written to people in this city and from people residing there, as well. Cleopatra and Mark Antony killed off her sister here. And the temple of the Ephesian Artemis here was one of the Seven Wonders of the Ancient World. The apostle Paul left after an uproar in Ephesus having to do with idols and money. And Shakespeare later made the city his setting for “A Comedy of Errors.” (Ironically, Ephesus’s history reads more like a tragedy than a comedy, considering that its inhabitants consistently sided with the losers.)

For all these reasons I chose “The city of Ephesus from 100 BCE to CE 100” as one of my PhD examination fields. And having done all that research, I wanted to make …

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