Gender Justice Concerns | CBE International

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Gender Justice Concerns

While growing up in the 1960s, I heard women in our neighborhood complain about being called housewives. “I am not married to a house!” they would say. Of course the term typically meant that they were wives who spent their time caring for a house and those in it. But still, it offended these women who, by the way, didn’t even consider themselves feminists or egalitarians. Being called housewives simply assigned them a label they thought was inaccurate and, frankly, a bit demeaning. As I made my way through high school and college in the 1970s and early 80s, I saw women who spent their time caring for their houses and those in it (notice, I didn’t say housewives) bristle when someone asked if they worked. “Of course I work” they’d cry “wha... Read more
We came across these fantastic blog posts advocating for biblical gender equality. What an encouragement. I hope you will be encouraged, too. Changing My Mind on Women in Ministry, Part 2, by Mark Moore (Missio Alliance) I know that many of you are in the same place I was. You are worried that if you change your mind on a doctrine, like the role of women in ministry, it will mean that you have sold out and become a liberal. Fine. Don’t change your mind. Nobody is forcing you to do so, especially not Jesus. However, I do believe that Jesus is asking the church, his bride, to love one another and to be open to listening to one another. 1 Corinthians 14 & Women's Silence in the Church, by Mark Kubo (The Junia Project) Paul affirms the right of women... Read more
Some readers of The CBE Scroll will be surprised to learn of the variety of strongly-held opinions regarding who has the right of way when hiking. Hikers with an opinion are evenly divided between two primary points of view. First, many believe that when two hikers meet, the person hiking uphill has the right of way. Why? Because the uphill hiker shouldn’t have to lose and then regain momentum. Others believe the opposite, that the descending hiker has the right of way. Why? Because the huffing and puffing ascender would presumably appreciate a break! Throw in various complicating factors—lone hiker meets large group, woman meets man, walker meets runner, day hiker meets backpacker—and you’ve got fuel for a lengthy campfire discussion. My practice is si... Read more
From time to time we hear of the responsibilities outlined in Ephesians 5 verses 22 - 33 concerning husbands and wives respectively. Often the language gets reduced to a catch phrase like, "women want to be loved and men need respect." It is as if this phrase defines all women and all men for all time. It is as if this phrase sums up all that is required by all women and all men. It is assumed that for men, love is not an issue, all that they require to be completed as men is respect. Equally, for women it is suggested that love, of the emotional, 'touchy feely' variety is all that women crave. While this may be true for some men and women it does not hold that it is true for all, as many writers would have us believe. Indeed most writers who claim such are of the opini... Read more
There are so many great posts around the web proclaiming biblical equality. Here are some we noticed: 5 Ways Married Men Can Act Like Adults Around Women (Single or Not), by Luke Harms (Living the Tension) It is possible to maintain eye contact without being skeezy. If you lack the self-control to do so, it’s because you sir, are a creeper. But what’s more, you have so devalued women in your own mind that they don’t exist outside of the parts of their body that you find attractive. The Many Female Followers of Jesus, by Marg Mowczko (The Junia Project) Many women were dedicated followers of Jesus during his ministry on earth.  Many of these women seem to have been independent of fathers and husbands, and some were independently wealthy.... Read more
Margaret Mowczko
This post originally appeared on Margaret Mowczko's blog "newlife" on June 21, 2014: newlife.id.au/equality-and-gender-issues/how-to-keep-friends-and-influence-people/. I’ve been asked several times for advice about how to maintain good relationships with Christian family and friends who hold to different and even opposing views on so-called “gender roles”.  This is a real concern for some.  Here are a few things I’ve learnt through having many discussions with people, in real life and online, on the sometimes sensitive issues surrounding the “roles” of men and women in Christian marriage and ministry. Family  My family (mother, husband, two sons, and, more recently, my daughter-in-law) have simply come with me... Read more
Don’t be afraid to be big, women. That’s what I learned at a conference this weekend. Women are taught to be small. Tomorrow, pay attention to how women walk, sit and stand compared to men. You’ll notice women take smaller steps with their hands closer to their sides, cross their legs, fold their hands in their laps. Men are more likely to swing their arms when they walk, stretch out their legs, drape their arm over the seat next to them. And of course, mainstream American media portrays thin women as the ideal. We women aren’t supposed to take up space with our bodies. We’re not supposed to draw attention to ourselves in other ways, either. American girls’ achievement, particularly in math and science, starts dropping off in middle school. They... Read more
This month marks the 27th anniversary of the famous "Tear Down this Wall" speech. "Tear down this wall!" was the challenge issued by United States President Ronald Reagan to Soviet Union leader Mikhail Gorbachev to destroy the Berlin Wall. Reagan said. “We welcome change and openness; for we believe that freedom and security go together, that the advance of human liberty can only strengthen the cause of world peace. General Secretary Gorbachev … tear down this wall!”He continued, “Across Europe, this wall will fall. For it cannot withstand faith; it cannot withstand truth. The wall cannot withstand freedom." [1] Similar to other epochal times in church history, (E.g. the Protestant Reformation and th... Read more
Happy Friday! Here's a round-up of blog posts pointing to biblical gender equality. Be sure to share your own recommendations in the comments! Are Men and Women Enemies? by April Fiet I think we’ve forgotten that the curse was enmity between the woman and the snake…not between men and women. Was Abigail Right to Go Behind Nabal's Back? by Sandra Glahn Aside from learning hermeneutics in Abigail's story, we can also learn from Abigail's life. Although suffering in an abusive marriage, Abigail protected others from harm rather than thinking only of herself. She refused to cover for Nabal's sin, and she retained her voice in the situation. Sounds like a timely message, huh? Recovering the Unreal Man: William Wallace, Blind Hary, and the... Read more
“What pushes someone toward becoming a workaholic?” “What do we get out of spending too much time at work at the expense of our families?” These are the questions we pondered recently in a Sunday School class I attend. Answers ranged from the desire to provide for a family to employment insecurities to a desire to contribute to creative, meaningful work. What stood out to me, however, was even though the group was comprised of equal numbers of men and women, each person who offered a personal anecdote was male. The females of the group turned our heads in sync with each other toward the various commentators, occasionally making appropriate sympathy noises. But otherwise we were uninvolved in the discussion. The topic eventually shifted and the class moved on.... Read more

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