Inverting perversity

I had not come across the blog Biblical Personhood till Suzanne pointed to a fabulous post The Inverse statement on Biblical Manhood and Womanhood which pokes gentle fun at the perverse Danvers Statement on Biblical Manhood and Womanhood. The post neatly inverts the perverted “logic” of the Danvers statement. Read it, link to it!

6 comments on “Inverting perversity

  1. Ali

    Sigh.

  2. Ali

    Perhaps it’s best to explain my sigh :).

    I see no benefit in these sort of pulling down posts and negative labelling. It doesn’t help anything other to make people feel good about their own position.

  3. Tim Bulkeley

    While I’ll confess that MY tone fits that description, I would not agree to such a description being applied to the post I linked to. By reversing the sort of argument used it provides a neat simple counter to many of the points made.

    But I’d agree the issue is deeper than agrumnent and counter-argument.

  4. Heather

    I disagree with Ali.

    I found the linked post both helpful and enlightening. My formation (in the French sense) has been strongly influenced by both secular feminists and conservative open Brethren Christians, as well as more ‘middle of the road’ evangelicals. The gender roles strictly adhered to amongst my Brethren connections seem to frequently lead to a treatment of women that seems foreign to my understanding of God. They seem to me to be based on readings of individual verses but are contrary to the Bible as a whole.

    However I am nervous of my own ‘Bible as a whole’ argument. The Bible is a great big book, and it’s a big claim to make: that I have a handle on it’s overall message against which I can correctly judge various interpretations of particular passages. How can I be sure that I’m not just channeling the secular feminists who also had such a big role in my development? I don’t want to have to be a doormat, but I want to defy God even less.

    So I found the post to which you refer most refreshing. I didn’t initially realise it was a spoof (many people have labelled me naive over the years and I came to it from a link that gave no more commentary than ‘this looks interesting’). I was surprised and intrigued to ‘realise’ that there was a Christian community somewhere who had such doctrines – who had constructed from the Bible essentially the opposite argument from the one I was familiar with. Some of their points were obviously ridiculous, but you get that with the standard submission arguments, too, and plenty of them seemed easily as strong.

    So now, even though I now know there is no such community, the post gives me a bit more confidence in refuting what people say the Bible says about women. If you can make the Bible say the exact opposite just as easily, then it seems likely that these ideas come from our fallenness rather than from God. Looks like ‘Bible as a whole’ arguments, flawed though they may be, might be necessary, along with careful reading of context etc. (I’m working my way through that ‘Journey into God’s word’ book you reccommended at the moment).

  5. Tim Bulkeley

    Thanks for your comment Heather. I think there is something of a middle way between reading small chunks of Scripture in such a way that you can make what you want from it, which both the neo-Conservative and Feminist (at least in the spoof version) do, and only trying to read the whole of Scripture. Which as you point out is either impossible or risks beingf very subjective.

    I’ll try to lay out a biut more of that as I go on with this series.

    The strength of the spoof is that it does show how the methods of reading used by (at least many of) the proponents of a hard form of Complementarianism (which seems to me not so much about the genders being complementary as about claiming men rule) can be used to argue an opposite case.

    Unlike you ;) I’d be as unhappy in a church that insisted that women rule as one that does the opposite… but Im hopoing to show that God does not desire either for us :)

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