Sunday, June 23, 2013

the blue parakeet.

"Some believe the silencing passages (regarding women in Paul's writing) should control the WDWD passages ("What did women do?" in other accounts of Scripture, both old and new testaments).  Such persons give any number of reasons, but the point needs to be made clear: such persons believe the silencing passages are permanent and there is no place in the local church today for women prophets, apostles, or leaders or for women to perform any kind of teaching ministry.

There is a troubling irony in this approach, and it concerns whether we Christians are to live under the conditions of the fall or under the conditions of the new creation, whether we are to emphasize otherness or oneness.  To explain this, I want to remind you again of the words in Genesis 3:16: 'Your desire shall be for your husband, and he will rule over you...'

Sadly, some think Genesis 3:16 is a prescription for the relationship of women and men for all time.  Instead of a prescription, these two lines are a prediction of the fallen desire of fallen women and fallen men in a fallen condition in a fallen world.  Fallen women yearn to dominate men, and fallen men yearn to dominate women.  The desire to dominate is a broken desire.  The redeemed desire is to love in mutuality...

Christian men and women are to live a life that moves beyond the fall, beyond the battle of wills.  If new creation does anything, it unleashes the power to undo the fall in our world.  I cannot emphasize this enough: the story of the Bible is the story of new creation in Christ.  The words of Genesis 3:16, to put the matter directly, are overcome in new creation...

What we see in this desire to silence women is the desire to rule over women, a desire that pertains to the fall, not to the new creation.  What the Spirit does when the Spirit is present is release and liberate humans from their fallen condition so that God's will can be completely done.  The Spirit creates mutuality.  Always."

From Scot McKnight's terrific exploration of how and why we read Scripture the way we do, The Blue Parakeet.  It is not a difficult read, but it's very thought-provoking right in the midst of all that simplicity and good humor.  If you read, love, and sometimes struggle with the Bible, you would probably find this book both challenging and refreshing.

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