In admitting that she is routinely criticized for painting complementarians with too broad a brushstroke, blogger Rachel Held Evans recently asked: "Does the Council on Biblical Manhood and Womanhood represent you? If not, what organizations or leaders do? Who are complementarians looking to for leadership these days?"
As a complementarian, I'm not interested in mounting a defense of male headship, and I don't want to become the poster child for complementarian theology. I myself am only held fast by exegetical threads. What's more, I am frequently embarrassed by the illogic and cultural bias that tends to frame some of the complementarian sound bytes (Boys shouldn't play with dolls, Dads who stay at home are man-fails, Christianity has a masculine feel, and so on).
Yet it's a fair question to ask: Who am I taking my theological cues from? If the Council of Biblical Manhood and Womanhood doesn't speak for me, then who does?
Evans isn't the only one asking about today's complementarians. When I wrote "What You Don't Know About Complementarian Women," a commenter remarked, "Complementarians??? Good lord, people! What's with inventing all this terminology? Can't wait for the day when a brave soul publishes a Christian lingo dictionary."
These theological terms -- complementarian/egalitarian -- describe our theological understanding of gender roles in the church and family. They aren't our regular Sunday fare, and standard definitions often fail to capture the broad ways people live out each approach.
So who is it that represents my stance? I have two answers: Stanley Hauerwas, and Kyle Hackmann. They haven't laid out a thorough outline ...1
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