Book Review: The Trinity and Subordinationism: The Doctrine of God and the Contemporary Gender Debate | CBE International

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Book Review: The Trinity and Subordinationism: The Doctrine of God and the Contemporary Gender Debate

The Trinity and Subordinationism

Have you heard the claim that relationships between men and women should image the "eternal subordination" in the Trinity? If so, read this book. With a profound, concise course in Trinitarian theology and hermeneutics, using two case studies to exemplify points, The Trinity & Subordinationism is highly recommended.

Kevin Giles' work has three sections; (1) a discussion of the Trinity through the hierarchalist's claim that there is eternal subordination within God, and a review of the historical church's position; (2) a discussion of the church's historical view of women, followed by a comparison of the hierarchicalist's and egalitarian perspectives as compared to the historical position; and (3) a discussion of slavery, which parallels the gender debate, and the ways in which Athanasius and Augustus handled the issue of the Trinity.

With clarity and humor, Giles lucidly and effectively skewers subordinationalist and hierarchical arguments. This book provides the methodology evangelicals need to move beyond proof­texting, without dismissing the authority of Scripture that is necessary to inform us on modern issues. In the end, Giles expresses his sincere delight in the way that God used his own study on these matters to broaden his understanding of what it means to work with theology.

Kevin Giles is vicar of St. Michael's Church (Anglican) in North Carlton, Australia. He has contributed numerous articles to scholarly journals. He is the author of several books, including What on Earth is the Church? and a contributor to the Dictionary of Jesus and the Gospels. Giles' experience and learning makes this book insightful!

The Trinity & Subordinationism provides extensive footnotes, as well as Scripture, author, and subject indices and an appendix on homosexuality. The chapters on the Reformers' view of the Trinity, the novelty of the modern hierarchical position on women, and the "biblical" case for slavery are excellent.

This book will prepare any reader to better understand and articulate his or her own views of Scripture. Giles reminds us we are all imperfect interpreters of God's word and encourages us to receive his grace.

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