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Mutuality

Book Review: Women in Scripture: A Dictionary

When 70 Jewish and Christian scholars collaborate on a one-volume catalog reference work such as this, the result is sure to be of unprecedented proportions. This is what the editors of Women in Scripture had hoped when they started this project, and they were not disappointed.

Women in Scripture combines over 800 articles about every woman in the Bible in a comprehensive, easy-to-read format. Set up in three sections (Named Women, Unnamed Women, and Female Deities and Personifications), it is encyclopedic in its accessibility, yet textual in its readability.

Book Review: Two Views on Women in Ministry

“God is not an equal opportunity employer.” “God is an equal opportunity employer.”

These antithetical statements come from the two authors representing the complementarian view in Two Views on Women in Ministry, a new book in Stanley N. Gundry’s “Counterpoints” series.

Book Review: Why Not Women?

Authors Loren Cunningham and David J. Hamilton combine biblical truth and cultural awareness in their book, Why Not Women? A Biblical Study of Women in Missions, Ministry, and Leadership.

Loren Cunningham is the founder of Youth With A Mission, one of the world’s largest mission societies. Over 40 years, he has broken through generational, gender and ethnic barriers, releasing hundreds of thousands into ministry. He’s ministered in every country, giving him a unique perspective of the potential of the church to complete the great commission.

Book Review: Men are from Israel, Women are from Moab

Unlike any other book I’ve read, the authors of this book seek the common ground between men and women instead of proclaiming their differences. How are we alike? What guiding principles does the Bible suggest for relationships between men and women?

Men are from Israel, Women are from Moab: Insights about the Sexes from the Book of Ruth, written by Dr. Norm Wakefield and Jody Brolsma, takes a quick look at our gender stereotypes and discards them. Instead, they focus on how we can build one another up and nurture healthy relationships.

Book Review: Women Leaders and the Church

This new book is one of the best I have read in a long time, due to its easy-to-read style and thorough treatment of women and the Bible. The author is professor of biblical literature at North Park Theological Seminary, Chicago.

Book Review: Is it Okay to Call God Mother?

When I first saw the title, Is It Okay to Call God Mother, my mind raced ahead. Is this book promoting heresy? Is it theologically liberal, radically feminist, or new age? Yet, I was intrigued and decided to read the book. And, what a book it is! It is a must read for evangelicals! Is It Okay to Call God Mother provides rich biblical material on the feminine attributes of God which has been largely overlooked by the evangelical community.

Book Review: The TNIV Bible

The new TNIV Bibles for women and men promise to help Christians gain an identity and maturity in Christ: the women’s Bible, entitled True Identity: The Bible for Women, includes the cover description, “becoming who you are in Christ,” and the men’s Bible, entitled Strive: The Bible for Men, says, “becoming the man Christ wants you to be.”

Book Review: How I Changed My Mind About Women in Leadership

Alan F. Johnson's compilation of narratives entitled How I Changed My Mind About Women in Leadership: Compelling Stories from Prominent Evangelicals is a particularly fresh, honest, and persuasive resource in the growing collection of books on gender equality and women in leadership. The recognizable evangelicals in this book speak humbly and clearly about how their theological convictions and understanding of Scripture, with reference to women in leadership, were transformed through personal experience.

Book Review: Eve's Revenge: Women and a Spirituality of the Body

It’s what’s inside that counts.” After years of working to believe this, I’ve found a book that confirms my suspicions—this hollow phrase is only half-true.

Book Review: The Christian Family in Changing Times

In the last three decades, Christians have endured intensive teaching about the family— marriage and parenting seminars, books and tapes, even radio broadcasts and Web sites. Yet the more resources thrown at families, the more the family has eroded.

“Perhaps it’s time to rethink the evangelical sound byte we call the Christian family,” says Robert M. Hicks in The Christian Family in Changing Times.

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Volume 16

Tomboy. This label still seems far too domesticated a term for my childhood as I loved tromping through creeks, making elaborate forts, crawling around in camouflage, and climbing up pine trees. My parents never discouraged my outlets of energy nor my desires to become a detective, a lawyer, or the president; they encouraged me to be all God made me to be. Interestingly, the message I received in Sunday school and gleaned from weekly sermons did not match my parents’ encouragement. Read more
As a person who examines words for her profession, I am consistently amazed at how often we (myself included!) use certain words and expressions and assume that we all understand what they mean. For instance, consider the phrase “spiritual leader.” For as long as I have been a Christian, I have heard this concept applied to men, as a way to explain “male headship.” Read more
If you want something ironed really well in our house, don’t ask me, ask my husband Malcolm. Trousers are perfectly pressed, shirts and blouses beautifully crease-free — even towels are ironed so they’re extra fluffy. Why do I mention this? Ironing is one of those things that men are not supposed to be able to do. So I’m amused by the proliferation of popular books like Why Men Don’t Iron and Why Men Don’t Listen and Women Can’t Read Maps, which argue that differences between men and women are due most often to biology and are thus fixed and unalterable. Malcolm is far more proficient than I am at ironing, but I’m better than he is at reading maps, and, as he often has to remind me, he is much better at listening. Read more
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One of the joys I have living in Minnesota is observing the service and sacrifice individuals make for one another, particularly in the fall. Almost every autumn, I hear friends describe how their family or neighbors worked throughout the night, or over the weekend, to help them get the apples picked and the wheat harvested.  Read more
“If Jesus were really counter-cultural, why didn’t he choose any Gentiles to be his apostles?” or “Why didn’t he choose any slaves as apostles?” Jews thanked God that they were not born a Gentile, an untrained person (or a slave), or a woman, so wouldn’t Jesus have been really counter-cultural if he had Gentiles and Jews, untrained and trained (or slave and free), and women and men among his twelve disciples?  Read more
“The worship pastor there is full of the Holy Spirit. She is so gifted at what she is doing.” A group of young adults from my new church sat in a local Chinese restaurant, listening to our friend and pastor describe his recent visit to a nearby worship service. Another friend expressed out loud what I was thinking: “Wait, what denomination did you say the church belongs to? And they have a woman pastor?” Read more
While doing research at a theological library, a graduate student sat next to an older man she thought was a pastor. He was cordial and devout, and he initiated a conversation in which his interests in history were apparent. As they chatted, he asked a number of penetrating questions. He was quick to recommend helpful books and his interest in her work was encouraging. When she finally asked him about his life, she learned that he was the highest ranking historian in all of Britain. In fact, he holds an endowed chair at Cambridge University that dates back to Henry VIII. Despite their differences culturally and in terms of eloquence and learning, he respected her passion for history as reason to engage her as a colleague and affirm her calling. He assumed that God had brought them together to encourage one another. He treated her as an equal, and his professional welcome was not only a model of Christian pedagogy and ministry. It also reminded her of the humility and inclusivity that builds productive ministry teams.  Read more
The birth of Jesus was surrounded by many unique and miraculous events, accompanied by wondrous words from angels and humans, both male and female. Simeon’s statement to Mary at Jesus’ circumcision, “This child is destined to cause the falling and rising of many in Israel” (Luke 2:34), is a lens through which we can view Jesus’ encounters with people. Jesus humbled the proud, the rich, and the powerful.  Read more
Scot McKnight is a prolific author and speaker on the New Testament and is the Karl A. Olsson Professor in Religious Studies at North Park University (Chicago, Illinois). He is the author of an award-winning blog, Jesus Creed (blog.beliefnet.com/jesuscreed), and is a highly respected figure in both academic and pastoral circles. He is also a quiet and consistent advocate for biblical mutuality, which he defines as giving women “the freedom to discern what God has called them to do — whatever it might be, including preaching, teaching, and leading in the church” (The Blue Parakeet, p. 161). Read more

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