Demand for Apology from the Council on Biblical Manhood and Biblical Womanhood

July 26, 2010, the Freedom for Christian Women Coalition will Fed-Ex the following demand for an apology from the Council on Biblical Manhood and Biblical Womanhood.  Will you join us for Women’s Equality? 

Associated Baptist Press has picked up our story.  You can read what they say:  http://www.abpnews.com/content/view/5370/53/#jc_allComments

July 24, 2010

Dr. Randy Stinson, President

Council on Biblical Manhood and Biblical Womanhood

2825 Lexington Road, Box 926

Louisville, KY  40280

And 

Dr. J Ligon Duncan III

Chairman of the Board of the CBMBW

First Presbyterian Church

1390 North State Street

Jackson, MS  39202

The Freedom for Christian Women Coalition met on July 24, 2010, in Orlando, Florida, and agreed and affirmed this Demand for an Apology from the Council on Biblical Manhood and Biblical Womanhood because of the concerns as listed in the following pages.

For the sake of all Christians, men and women, we demand that the Council on Biblical Manhood and Biblical Womanhood, make a public apology for the misuse of Holy Scripture as it relates to women, and cease to publish or promote The Danvers Statement on Biblical Manhood and Biblical Womanhood.

Sincerely,

Freedom for Christian Women Coalition

Demand for an Apology from the Council on Biblical Manhood and Biblical Womanhood

At a time in our church history that the main focus should be on winning lost souls and spreading the gospel to a hurting world, we fear for the future because the Council on Biblical Manhood and Biblical Womanhood has placed a greater priority on women’s submissive role rather than on the gospel of Jesus Christ.

It is with that thought in mind that we make these statements.

  1. We are concerned that men are being taught that they are god-like in their relationship to women within the church and home. As the mothers, wives, and daughters of these men, it is our concern that this doctrine is setting them up for failure as Christian fathers, husbands and sons;
  2. we are concerned about the sin that evangelical church leaders commit when they deny the love of Christ fully to women simply because they were born female;
  3. we are concerned about the damage this causes to families when husbands and fathers are told that they have Headship over their wives and daughters;
  4. we are concerned about wife abuse, girlfriend abuse, and abuse to female children that takes place in many homes where evangelical men are taught that they have earthly and spiritual authority over women;
  5. we are concerned that the children who attend churches that subscribe to the principles of The Danvers Statement on Biblical Manhood and Biblical Womanhood will grow up not knowing the full redemptive power of the blood of Jesus for both men and women;
  6. we are concerned for the mental and emotional development of girls and boys who attend churches that teach males have superiority over females;
  7. we are concerned that men who are taught that they have Male Headship over a home and church do not feel that they are accountable for abusive attitudes and actions towards women;
  8. we are concerned about the mistranslation of the scriptures by complementarian translation committees and by the false teachings propagated by the Council on Biblical Manhood and Biblical Womanhood;
  9. we are concerned that pastors who teach and preach male domination/female subordination cannot relate in a loving, Christ-like manner to female members of their congregations because they have already judged them and found them lacking;
  10. we are concerned that the issue of wifely submission, promoted so heavily by the Council on Biblical Manhood and Womanhood, is more about power and control than about love or obeying the Word of God.

It is because of these concerns that:

  1. We demand that the Council on Biblical Manhood and Womanhood acknowledge the harm that has been done to the church body by The Danvers Statement on Biblical Manhood and Biblical Womanhood, confess it as sin, and denounce it;
  2. we demand that denominational leaders and all churches and seminaries which have adopted The Danvers Statement on Biblical Manhood and Biblical Womanhood do the same;
  3. we demand a public apology from the Council on Biblical Manhood and Biblical Womanhood, and from all heads of seminaries and Bible colleges that have adopted The Danvers Statement on Biblical Manhood and Biblical Womanhood, for the inestimable damage this statement has done to all Christians whose lives have been influenced by it;
  4. we demand that the Council on Biblical Manhood and Biblical Womanhood begin to promote the Biblical design of functional equality for all Christians, both men and women;
  5. we demand that the Council on Biblical Manhood and Biblical Womanhood begin to speak out against pastors who continue to demean women and oppress Christians by the use of The Danvers Statement on Biblical Manhood and Biblical Womanhood;
  6. we demand that the Council on Biblical Manhood and Biblical Womanhood chastise pastors who claim that abuse of women is acceptable and justified because the wife is not submitting to the husband;
  7. we demand that the Council on Biblical Manhood and Biblical Womanhood make known to every boy and every girl who attend an evangelical church, that God is their head, and that authority over another human being can come only from God;
  8. we demand that the Council on Biblical Manhood and Biblical Womanhood teach men that they share equally in the burden of society’s ills, and that all that is wrong with society today cannot be blamed on women;
  9. we demand that the Council on Biblical Manhood and Biblical Womanhood do everything in their power to teach seminarians to show the love of Christ to both men and women;
  10. we demand that the Council on Biblical Manhood and Biblical Womanhood teach pastors to be loving towards those Christian men and women who disagree with The Danvers Statement on Biblical Manhood and Biblical Womanhood;
  11. and, finally, for the sake of all Christians, men and women, we demand that the Council on Biblical Manhood and Biblical Womanhood, make a public apology for the misuse of Holy Scripture as it relates to women, and cease to publish or promote The Danvers Statement on Biblical Manhood and Biblical Womanhood.

Shirley Taylor, bWe Baptist Women for Equality presented at the Seneca Falls 2 Evangelical Women’s Rights Convention July 24, 2010 in Orlando, Florida

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About bwebaptistwomenforequality

Shirley Taylor writes with humor and common sense, challenging the church body to reclaim equality for Christian women.
This entry was posted in Equality for women in Southern Baptist churches, The Danvers Statement on Biblical Manhood and Biblical Womanhood. Bookmark the permalink.

31 Responses to Demand for Apology from the Council on Biblical Manhood and Biblical Womanhood

  1. Paula says:

    “we are concerned that men who are taught that they have Male Headship over a home and church do not feel that they are not accountable for abusive attitudes and actions towards women;”

    Am I reading this wrong, or are there too many “nots” here?

    Like

  2. Sonnet says:

    Something about the use of the word “demand” bothers me. I think another word like “request” would be better received. Maybe I’m way off base here. Any other opinions on this?

    Like

    • postghost says:

      Actually, I think we can’t use strong enough terms. These people at CBMW will continue to get away with murder (sometimes literally, for the women who are abused by men citing CBMW’s interpretations of scripture) as long as we remain polite and respectful. It’s way past time to get in their faces, for the sake of the women who suffer and the men whose emotional and spiritual growth are stunted by such teachings.

      They only understand power, so it requires a powerful opposition. The war needs to reach their castle before they’ll take us seriously. Threaten them in their wallets and they’ll sit down to talk.

      Like

    • “request” is wishy-washy. Women are often seen as apologizing for even being. We “demand” this. And it is well past time.

      Like

      • Sonnet says:

        What about adding
        “In the name of justice” we demand… ?

        Justice demands not oppressing others. Since they are oppressing women, they are acting unjustly to half of the human race.

        Like

      • Sonnet says:

        Thought about it some more. I think writing something like

        “We believe justice requires that…” in place of “We demand…” would allow for better communication. I’m concerned that your target audience will automatically dismiss your *demands* because of the militant language. It might be construed as a conversation stopper. But I’m guessing that this has already been mailed out.

        Like

      • Yes, it has been mailed out. One of the things women do is to start sentences like this: I believe, I think, It seems to me, and all sorts of qualifying ways so as to not seem to be aggresive. This Apology is something we demand. Not something we just think might be a good idea. We demand it.

        Please demand it with us. We need your help.

        Like

      • Paula says:

        Yes, I agree… we’ve been too polite and respectful. That’s good when we’re talking with people who are open and reasonable, but CBMW has proved in many documents by many authors that they are neither. They’ll keep on patting us on our pretty little heads and say “Do you really have it so bad?” as long as we let them. We enable them when we are polite.

        The stakes are too hight to be patient any more. We owe it to the oppressed to show a backbone and be willing to follow through, because anything less will mean nothing changes.

        I know we shouldn’t have to go to this extreme, especially against those claiming Christ, but we are out of options.

        Like

  3. territippins says:

    1.We are concerned that men are being taught that they are god-like in their relationship to women within the church and home. As the mothers, wives, and daughters of these men, it is our concern that this doctrine is setting them up for failure as Christian fathers, husbands and sons

    And that concern is truly valid in our day esp. when the scripture makes a COMPARISON of Jesus and the husband not a comparison of God and the Husband. It would seem to me that the Husband is ‘movin on up’ while Jesus is heading down.

    2. we are concerned about the sin that evangelical church leaders commit when they deny the love of Christ fully to women simply because they were born female

    Now, this is a comment they will flatly deny. But, we know as women in the church, that we are ‘still payin’ for Eve’s sin. God has turned his face from us and we (women) cannot do enough ‘penance’ to make Him love us like He did before (of course this has to be taught in a covert manner so, that women will not feel that weight in all thier other teachings.) Adams sinful act of disobedience does not seem to render any ill affects when it comes to his power or authority. That remains in tact (they say) and has to be exerted even more (as women ‘desire to rule men’ (with the before mentioned being taught openly.)

    3.we are concerned about the damage this causes to families when husbands and fathers are told that they have Headship over their wives and daughters

    We all know and they know that the word ‘headship’ is not in the Bible but they insist on using it, why? Because, the word ‘headship’ imports power into the passage when the word ‘head’ simply does not. What this effectively does is gives men kingly rights over thier women. And nowhere does the Bible say that the Father is the head of the daughter.

    4.we are concerned about wife abuse, girlfriend abuse, and abuse to female children that takes place in many homes where evangelical men are taught that they have earthly and spiritual authority over women

    They will affirm that evangelical men have spiritual authority but they will deny the excesses of male only power. They say, if you do complementarianism right then you will have a wonderful family life. But, we know that because there are few boundries placed on male authority, and that each man makes up the rules for his own home, his power then is only limited by his own imagination.

    5.we are concerned that the children who attend churches that subscribe to the principles of The Danvers Statement on Biblical Manhood and Biblical Womanhood will grow up not knowing the full redemptive power of the blood of Jesus for both men and women;

    Another vailid concern, as girls will grow into women that will still being trying to ‘pay thier dues’ for simply being born the wrong gender.

    Like

  4. Kristen says:

    I’m with Paula on this one.

    From Martin Luther King, Jr’s, “Letter from a Birmingham Jail”:

    “Nonviolent direct action seeks to create such a crisis and foster such a tension that a community which has constantly refused to negotiate is forced to confront the issue. It seeks so to dramatize the issue that it can no longer be ignored. My citing the creation of tension as part of the work of the nonviolent resister may sound rather shocking. But I must confess that I am not afraid of the word “tension.” I have earnestly opposed violent tension, but there is a type of constructive, nonviolent tension which is necessary for growth. Just as Socrates felt that it was necessary to create a tension in the mind so that individuals could rise from the bondage of myths and half truths to the unfettered realm of creative analysis and objective appraisal, so must we see the need for nonviolent gadflies to create the kind of tension in society that will help men rise from the dark depths of prejudice and racism to the majestic heights of understanding and brotherhood. ”

    Here’s a link to the whole letter:
    http://www.africa.upenn.edu/Articles_Gen/Letter_Birmingham.html

    The reason the “demand for apology” had to be worded as a “demand” was that other avenues for communication have failed. This one is likely to fail too, but that doesn’t mean it will have no effect.
    If the CBMW ignores the letter, then coalitions like this one must continue to cry out. If (as I think will happen) CBMW answers with a dismissive and demeaning letter, then such a letter will work against CBMW– particularly if it can be brought home that they are dismissing and demeaning women who have legitimate complaints as victims of violence.

    Remember the African-Americans who were attacked with firehoses during their peaceful marches. This was one of the things that turned the tide of public opinion against the oppressors.

    It doesn’t matter whether a letter like this is perfect or not– it doesn’t matter whether or not everyone agrees completely with its tone or manner of address. What matters is that people who are being oppressed in the name of Christ are lifting up their voices. I say let those voices be a catalyst for more tension, more non-violent confrontation– until organizations like CBMW HAVE to listen! More of us– especially men who support the cause of women’s freedom in Christ– need to speak up. We need to show support of these women. If someone doesn’t like the format or tone of the letter, then let them add their own voice in whatever manner they think best. But the time for accommodation of abusive religion needs to be over.

    Like

  5. Pingback: O nouă dezbatere: “Demand for Apology” | Marius Cruceru

  6. Paula says:

    I went to the Romanian site and clicked “translate”, and here is the first (only so far) comment:

    The more women will fight for equality and domination over with so the result will be exactly the opposite … Respect is earned not by force and … “If you love be worth it” …

    This commenter is already trying to demean us, first of all by claiming we want domination (!!) along with equality, then by threatening “disrespect” if we get to uppity.

    Obviously, my first rebuttal would be “Equality is the absence of domination; you’ve not read any egal literature”. My second would be, “And exactly how much respect are we getting now, by being coy and polite? Ask the abused women how much respect they get by bowing low before men!”

    Like

  7. Lydia says:

    This specific focus on gender roles in comp doctrine has really been only since the 1980’s when it started to be treated as salvic doctrine. The Danvers statement…Knight’s book, etc.

    No one really thought much of roles before then and I think women had more freedom in the Body before then when few were thinking about it.

    However, the laser like focus on gender roles in the Body and marriage over the last 30 years is a whole generation! And the comps have been excellent at marketing and making their extra biblical doctrine sound like biblical truth and labeling the other side as liberal feminists.

    (See this great article by Rebecca Groothius showing their tactic are the same as the Darwinists)

    http://www.ivpress.com/groothuis/pdf.php/rebecca/000045.pdf

    We have a generation of Christians that this has been drilled into their heads since day one. They know nothing else. We have yet to see the true extent of the serious fallout from this doctrine. The brainwashing has been incredible. So incredible that most cannot read Genesis without seeing creation order as authority. It is quite amazing and we need to pray about this because it takes quite a bit to change ingrained paradigms. Not much unlike the time it took from the Civil War to Civil Rights. We have ghe same type thinking of women as being inferior.

    But what we have seen is bad enough.

    And the men who promote it are just as lost in their own preeminance and need to lord it over someone calling it responsibility and love.. A most unbiblical position for them. As Paula has pointed out, we do not see them vying for last place or the lowliest position.

    Like

  8. Kristen says:

    This idea that women are asking for equality because we secretly want domination is insidious. Our motives are suspect, preventing our true concerns from being listened to.

    The comps interpret of “your desire shall be for him, and he rule over you,” as “you shall desire to dominate him, but he will keep you in your place.” This is just as bad as when white slavers used to insist that Africans were under the curse of Ham and designed by God to be slaves.

    Like

  9. chaidrinkingfool says:

    This is *great*. Thank you all for writing this letter. Yes! “Demand”!

    One way or another it seems the other side has been in control of language. The word “complementary” as defined in the dictionary does not by definition include any notion of hierarchy. Yet we are now forced to use the term, “non-hierarchical complementarian” to describe our position.

    Latest news in the war of words:

    “hyper-egalitarianism” — How one is “hyper” equal, or “hyper” not sexist, I’m not sure, but I believe the aim here is to turn the alternative to the word “feminist” (i.e., “egalitarian”) into a dirty word. Since “feminist” became a bad word long ago, despite the arguably Christian roots of the initial movement. Not to mention the injustice that sparked the following movements, however misguided or misdirected. I digress…

    “nuance” — It’s what the newer, even *softer* complementarians claim egalitarians miss seeing in Scripture. We are “missing the nuances”.

    If you hear about “Wellspring for Men” (and they’ve now started a group for women) in your church, be warned: They speak more softly, but at the end of the day, still believe a husband is to lead his wife. How the wife is to follow both her husband and Jesus Christ, I do not know.
    I also am unaware of the Wellspring view on women in leadership in the church.

    Like

  10. CJ James says:

    What is obvious is that there are no Bible references in this document.

    Like

    • CJ, what kind of Bible reference would you give for this statement which is one of our concerns: “We are concerned that pastors who teach and preach male domination/female subordination cannot relate in a loving, Christ-like manner to female members of their congregations because they have already judged them and found them lacking.”

      Or a scripture for our demands: We demand that the Council on Biblical Manhood and Biblical Womanhood chastise pastors who claim that abuse of women is acceptable and justified because the wife is not submitting to the husband.”

      Some things you just can’t put a scripture reference to. Please read the list of Concerns and the list of Demands, and look to the Bible that covers Christian behavior.

      Thank you for responding. Please keep reading. If we have not answered your questions, please ask again.

      Like

      • Kristen says:

        Also– the Pharisees who tithed mint, dill and cumin were experts on “Bible references.” What they lacked was the weightier matters of justice and mercy.

        That a woman should be told to go home and be more submissive to her abuser, or blamed for fleeing from her abuser, is against every principle of justice and mercy in the Holy Scriptures. This should be obvious. And yet this is the result, intended or not, of what CBMW promotes.

        Like

    • Paula says:

      This is a demand, a notice… not a thesis or study. We’ve got plenty of scriptures for those. 😉

      Like

    • Kristen says:

      The blood of Abel that cried out from the ground, also gave no Bible references.

      The oppressed should not have to give chapter and verse as to why oppression is wrong. For those who speak up for the oppressed, it is enough to say, “This is wrong.”

      Like

    • Lydia says:

      Ironcially, They are rare in the Danvers statement,too.

      A point RK McGregor Wright pointed out specifically in his excellent response to the statement back in the early 1990’s

      Like

      • Lydia says:

        On second thought, your statement could have been expanded by quite a few pages if you had listed all the “one another” passages, the warnings about lording it over, the Beatitudes, all the warnings of wolves, and listed all of Matthew 5-23, for starters.

        Like

      • Paula says:

        This is exactly where we need to focus: the basic, foundational principles of the faith. I just posted this at the abpnews site:

        But I would add that I believe comp theology fails at the most basic levels of the faith, contradicting foundational principles of the Spirit. “Not so among you”, “the first shall be last”, ” love does not demand its own way”, “esteem others as better than yourself”, and the examples of Jesus and the apostles in laying privilege aside to take the place of the lowest servant, are all over-arching principles that no individual scripture can overturn. If we encounter a verse that seems to do so, we must conclude that our interpretation of such a verse is flawed, for God cannot contradict Himself. The many “one anothers” of the NT, the Body model of the church (as opposed to the military, industrial, or club models), the “new creation”… if we understand these principles at all, we can never accept any doctrine which grates against them.

        Like

  11. Mara says:

    http://hupotasso.wordpress.com/2008/05/15/thank-god-for-a-contentious-wife/#comment-4734

    This comment left by disheartened is the reason we need this demand.
    This cancer has gotten out of control.

    Like

    • Paula says:

      Wow… what religion is that?? I read something a few weeks ago from the Moonie cult that sounded exactly like that man’s rant.

      Love of power and control is nothing less than “the teaching of the Nioclaitans” that Jesus hates.

      Like

  12. territippins says:

    Complimentarians are still in denial that thier teachings can lead to DV, as evidenced by one of the posters on ABP. The reality of women’s lives and what they experience living in hard comp marriges is being summarily excused as just plain old rebellion against male authority. As thier followers have been indoctrinated to deem any response from women, other than total obedience as recognition that their interpretation of women’s desire to usurp male authority is correct. What we are now doing (in thier way of thinking) by demanding an apology for thier false teaching, validates thier reason for male authority(You see what happens when women get a little freedom!). What we are dealing with is a systematic sinful structure that has been built to exlude women. The longevity of this structure plays into how easily people fall under its spell.

    We have been taught that nice girls don’t get angry. We have been encultured to feel responsible and to take responsiblity for every dysfunctional marriage, every wayward child, every angry man etc. I was reading a blog yesterday where comps were trying to blame the creation of ‘frozen dinners’ on women entering the workforce. Of course you don’t have to prove outrageous statements like that, all you have to do is present the idea to the right brainwashed crowd.

    Like

  13. Kristen says:

    Right, Territippins. No one expects the Spanish Inquisition! But it’s what we have here. (grin)

    “Woman, you’re already deemed guilty. Anything you do or say in rubuttal, only establishes your guilt even further.”

    Like

  14. Pingback: Where to File This level of In(s)anity? (How Not to use the Internet) | Cold,Hard.Fact$

    • Well, thanks a bunch for mentioning the Demand for an Apology from the Council on Biblical Manhood and Womanhood in your blog. I read that you think that we should post the Danvers Statement. That will be in my book “Dethroning Male Headship – because it doesn’t have a leg to stand on” which will come out in the Spring 2013. In fact, the whole book centers around the CBMW and their teaching along with the Baptist Faith and Message 2000 which was written by the same people, and then of course Mark Driscoll and John Piper and many others fit into the story because they are all linked. Be sure to stop by my website or blog to find out when it is available and purchase it.

      But, I invite you to Christ. It is not a perfect world and never has been and Christians have made their share of mistakes. But we are trying and we love the Lord (and most people).

      Like

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