Tuesday, July 20, 2010

Loving the Feminine "jesus"

You've heard it, the yucky, "getting in touch with my feminine side" from the guy to whom no good woman would ever give the time of day. Last night I ran across a quote that is even more yuck-making:

Not only do I love the feminine in Jesus, but the more I know Jesus, the more I realize that Jesus loves the feminine in me . . . Society has brought me up to suppress the so-called feminine dimension of my humanness. But when Jesus makes me whole, both sides of who I am meant to be will be finally realized. Then and only then will I be fully able to love Jesus.

-- Tony Campolo, Carpe Diem, p. 87-88.

Oh. This sounds remarkably like some of the drivel that has come out of supposedly Evangelical feminists like Virginia Ramey Mollenkott and Rosemary Radford Reuther. Funny, but no woman ever talks about getting in touch with her, "masculine side", does she? I've never heard it. They don't need to -- they've already done it.

It's no wonder, then, that "Christians" for Biblical Equality is accused of promoting Sophia worship, is it? With friends like Campolo, who needs enemies when you're trying to pretend to hold onto mere tatters of Christianity? Not that CBE is worried, with the Christianity Today empire carrying their water. If CT endorses your position, you're an Evangelical Christian without any worries about serious questions regarding your orthodoxy. Not only does CBE's president give workshops promoting the need to call God, "mother", but a past annual conference of CBE's hosted a workshop pretending to tell us what we can learn about "gender" from the intersexed. And here is Dr. Campolo teaching us all about our softer, gentler saviour, aka "Jesusette".

This is nothing new. The feminist project (whether it cloaks itself in Christianity or Marxism) has been all about re-making sex from the beginning. You can see it was there in the beginning if you check Elizabeth Cady Stanton's "Bible" version. "Votes for Women, " may have been their slogan, but it was never going to end there. By the 1960's the mother of second wave feminism, Betty Friedan, was creating out of whole cloth a "problem with no name". In the 1970's, Erin Pizzey found out that no one was interested in wife on husband violence, they only admitted the existence of husband on wife violence and seeded our communities with consciousness-raising groups that set about creating false memories by the truck load. Third and fourth wave feminists took control of their sexual identities and not only put themselves on display like so many $20-an-hour hookers, but they trumpeted their competition with men for notches on bedposts (or lipstick cases, as may be).

Mary Daly told us that, "when god is male, the male is god" and the Evangelical church bought it hook, line and sinker. They didn't admit it. Not at first. Back in 1997, Zondervan executive Stan Gundry stood in front of a packed auditorium of CBE conventioneers promising that "gender-inclusive" language would never be applied to God while CBE's founding mother, Cathie Kroeger, looked on and nodded, echoing Gundry's promises. Never mind the future, we've got to be about the business making sure these, "I am Woman, hear me roar!" gals aren't offended by one too many "brothers" in the Bible.

So "Votes for women" became demands for equality of outcomes. A movement which said it was about promoting women, ends up denigrating everything women do best. It tells us women aren't valued unless they can "man-up" and take the pulpit by force, if need be. Women aren't worth a pot of black bean soup if they aren't allowed to order a man or two about, teach a bible study, pastor a church. Remember, it is not the patriarchalists devaluing women, it's the feminists. Some denominations and parachurch organizations are truly putting their leadership where their mouth is and writing into their constitutions an equality of outcome -- 50-50 parity on Elder boards and governing boards.

It's gone on too long not to recognize that something that looks and acts very much like a slippery slope is in operation here. It's not even about giftedness. Never was. Turns out, even the religious forms of feminism are steeped in Marxist-style liberation-speak. And here we return to Dr. Campolo and conclude with his endorsement of "Christians" for Biblical Equality:

Christians for Biblical Equality is evangelical and progressive. It is a scripturally based movement that understands that in Christ women have full rights for using their God-given gifts for service to the church and to the world. I'm grateful that this organization exists. Its work is needed.

One almost expects Campolo to end that endorsement with, "Workers of the World Unite!"

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