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Confronted with the breakdown of the traditional family, we as Christians wonder how to minister to people in non-traditional family structures, and we also wonder what standards we should uphold in our own families.

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Is there a way forward beyond the dominant complementarian discourse at this nexus where a predominantly white North American evangelical Christianity has met racial and ethnic others, especially East Asians in the contemporary milieu?

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The book of Galatians reminds us we are called to be free, and to use that freedom to serve in love. 

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Misreadings of NT passages are undoubtedly due to a combination of assumptions, traditions, and all kinds of post-biblical and sub-biblical attitudes that have crept in to Christianity. We need to change our understanding of what the Bible says about how men and women are to relate to one another within the church.

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Much has been written about “sonship” and being “adopted as sons” as descriptions of being brought into and belonging to God’s family. Focus is often on the privileges of adoption in Paul’s letters, noting the love, honour, and freedom that follow. In light of this masculine language, we should ask whether women and girls experience daughterhood as bringing privileges and rights in the way men and boys experience sonship? More broadly, do we have a theology of daughterhood?

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Hidden behind much patriarchal thinking is a pervasive patrilineal worldview. The belief that the family line is a male line and that males own and inherit the resources, has colored nearly all our cultures in the past and still accounts for much oppression and sidelining of women. Beulah will speak from her experience in south Asian culture, recognizing that, within families, women often become the perpetrators of discrimination against females. Does that happen to some extent near all of us? The Bible culture too is patrilineal. How shall we view that?

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A theologically insightful chronological overview of how historic hierarchism has been replaced by both revised hierarchism and evangelical egalitarianism.

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The God presented by the biblical authors and worshipped in the Church today cannot be regarded as having gender, any more than God can be regarded as having race or color. In recognizing this truth, we will be more free to use inclusive metaphors for God.

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Sin is multidimensional in meaning, and both submission and self-esteem have both positive and negative aspects. I suggest that a theological examination of these concepts, in dialogue with psychology, can add a valuable dimension to current discussions on gender equality.

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Catherine Kroeger, the founding president of CBE, stated, “although women had made forays into the field of biblical interpretation, it was to be Katharine Bushnell who would bring out the heavy artillery.”

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