When we look at this Man [Christ Jesus] we see the negation of all distinctions. I quote from Paul in the Galatian letter for the sake of conciseness and brevity: “There can be neither Jew nor Greek, there can be neither bond nor free, there can be no male or female; for ye are all one in Christ Jesus.”
Even in the Christian church, women are often valued for what they do rather than for who they are. This is why the women’s liberation movement has struck a responsive chord in the hearts of many Christian women.
In the so-called “conservative resurgence” currently seeking to divide Baptist loyalties, the initial “line in the sand” was the inerrancy slogan, which was dropped when it proved too ambiguous to define and enforce. In its place as a litmus test of loyalty was put the subordination of women, first in the home and then in the church, in the form of a 1998 family amendment and 2000 revision of the Baptist Faith & Message.
The Bible teaches equality and essential dignity of men and women of all ethnicities, ages, and classes, as all are created in the image and likeness of God. Since the church is called to be salt and light in the context in which we live, it is essential that the church recognizes and promotes the biblical understanding that leadership and service is based on the gifting of the Holy Spirit. The revelation of Triune God is the foundation of mutuality.
In the article, “Sharing in the Divine Nature: Transformation, Koinonia and the Doctrine of God,” LeRon Shults notes three important late-modern developments in the doctrine of God: the retrieval of divine Infinity, the revival of Trinitarian doctrine, and a renewed conceptualization of God as primal Futurity.These developments were facilitated in part by a shift in ontology from a substance metaphysic to a metaphysic of relationality.
Female leadership in the CIMC is one of the fruits of the new growing Church in Mainland China. As the Church in Mainland China grows and becomes stronger in its unique cultural soil and environment, the new church system and theology will not only be shaped with its life and truth from the Bible, but also with a different beauty and a stronger power than those of the traditional church in the world.