Cedarville University's new president is solidifying the CCCU school's stance on gender roles. One example: Classes taught by the only female Bible professor are now open only to women. Complementarians (to whom we limited our question this month) disagree over whether this is necessary.(Responses are listed below on a scale, with "Yes" answers at the top and "No" answers at the bottom.)
"A college is not a church. It does not baptize, exercise church discipline, have elders and deacons, and so on. Biblical restrictions refer only to office (usually elders) rather than function, and that view simply can't be fairly transferred to a college or even a seminary."
Craig Blomberg, New Testament professor, Denver Seminary
"I hope and expect our students to learn as much as I do from the lectures, publications, and personal ministry of female faculty members. The academy is not the church, and as a college we support the church best when we leave questions of doctrinal oversight to the authority of the local church."
Philip Ryken, president, Wheaton College
"It comes down to your view of ecclesiology. I don't think you take an 18-year-old, crank him through a 4-year degree, and once he has a letter behind his name he's a church leader. I think that's a worldly way of looking at the office as an institution."
Mary Kassian, women's studies professor, Southern Baptist Theological Seminary
"The university is a gray area, but we should stay as much to the center of God's Word and principles as we can. He is going to have far greater pleasure in seeing a male theologian in the classroom than in our seeing if we couldn't put a woman in simply because she's gifted."
Dorothy Patterson, first lady, Southwestern Baptist Theological Seminary
"While Scripture addresses church settings, teaching roles that are elder-like should be shaped according to biblical eldership. Other aspects of elder qualifications would be operative for schools, so there's no reason to lop off the requirement that they be men."
Owen Strachan, executive director, Council on Biblical Manhood and Womanhood
"Mixed-gender theology classes should be taught by men. It is illogical to say a woman should train men to be Bible teachers and pastors when she shouldn't be one herself. If women shouldn't be pastors or elders in churches, then they should also not have that role in other contexts."
Wayne Grudem, theology professor, Phoenix Seminary