Thank you for being honest enough to look at the Bible through a lens of accuracy rather than inerrancy. Our Bible comes to us with a beautiful complexity that speaks of God’s power to use the tools of language, culture, and literature to speak to us and lead us to Jesus. We trivialize his great work when we do not embrace the alternatives and insights scholars bring to the reading of the Word. God’s Word was made to be meditated on, to be seen more deeply and richly with each reading and each new perspective.
One of my former students wrote a short essay for our local newspaper’s Black History Month Essay Contest about an early pastor from the Revolutionary War period, the Rev. Andrew Bryan, from his church, Silver Bluff Baptist Church in Silver Bluff, South Carolina. Several churches claim the distinction of being the first African American church in North America. Two are located in the Augusta, Georgia, area.
I am a 94-year-old Christian woman and have been discouraged by the attitude that only men are qualified for many positions in the church. Our country church was started by neighborhood ladies in 1933 under the American Sunday School Union and was primarily served by women! Once we got a full-time pastor, suddenly we became incapable of things being done before.
It did not go without notice that the Wayne Grudem who co-created the Danvers Statement is the very same man who edited the ESV Study Bible notes submitted by synoptic Gospel scholars to change their meaning. To Jo Dee I say, the sooner you find a congregation who treats women the way Jesus treated them, the better.1
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