This book is designed to answer the question of what Christians should do about the roles of men and women in the modern world. Consequently, it touches on a great many areas, each of which has been written about extensively. A book such as this cannot survey all the relevant material in each area.

On the other hand, this book is written in the conviction that a broader perspective is needed than that which is normally provided by most of those who write about social roles. Most of the books which advocate an approach to the roles of men and women do so without adequately surveying the relevant material on the subject. They rely heavily upon one author or a school of authors in controversial areas without seeming to realize that there are other valid approaches and without justifying their own choice of approach. As the Notes on Method will attempt to establish, feminist authors are particularly guilty of this, probably because their purpose is polemical.

A broader survey would also be helpful for scholarly writers who touch on the area of social roles for men and women. Much exegesis would be done differently, for instance, if exegetes were more aware of the work of social historians on the differences between traditional and technological society. Many exegetes would probably treat Paul’s arguments from Genesis differently if they had before them all the relevant modern social scientific data on the biological origin of the differences between men and women.

The approach adopted in these footnotes is a “survey” approach. The survey is reasonably complete for all the major works on approaches to the roles of men and women in the modern world up to the date of the completion of the text, and it is complete on the works those books draw upon. It is, in other words, a complete survey of all the significant works which play a part in the current discussion of social roles for men and women.

In addition, the survey covers the current scholarly approaches to the various areas touched upon in the argument of the text, even when these approaches are not represented in the current discussion of social roles. These notes do not try to present the history of the discussion in these areas. Neither do they attempt to be as complete in surveying works not written or translated into English unless the English sources indicate the importance of a work available only in another language.

The contribution of this book does not lie in original research. Rather, it lies in the framework of concepts and arguments that makes possible the assessing of different bodies of literature and thought. Perhaps it also lies in showing how much is being neglected or ignored in the current discussion of the roles of men and women.

Chapter 1

From the Beginning

1. For a short exposition of this controversy, see J. C. Fenton, St. Matthew (Baltimore: Penguin, 1963), 307–308 (cf. R. V. G. Tasker, St. Matthew [Grand Rapids: Eerdmans, 1961], 178–180). For a fuller presentation, see Strack and Billerbeck, Kommentar zum neuen Testament aus Talmud und Midrasch, vol. 1 (Munich: Beck, 1928), 312–321.

2. M Git. 9, 10.

3. In this view, Jesus was in harmony with views contemporary to him which saw Adam before the Fall as the ideal man. For a summary, see Theological Dictionary of the New Testament (TDNT), ed. G. Kittel, trans. G. Bromiley (Grand Rapids: Eerdmans, 1964), 1:142–143.

4. For some examples, see Robert Graves, Adam’s Rib (London: Trianon Press, 1955). Sr. Albertus Magnus McGrath, in What a Modern Catholic Believes about Women (Chicago: St. Thomas More Press, 1972), 101, also appears to take this view: “The modern biblical scholar would not accept Genesis 1–11 as in any sense literal history or as description either of what had been or what should be according to God’s plan.” Her use of the Genesis passages, however, is more in accord with view #2, parallel to the positions mentioned in the following note.

5. For some examples, see S. Hooke, Peake’s Commentary on the Bible (London: Thomas Nelson & Sons, 1962), 177; also W. R. Bowie, The Interpreter’s Bible, vol. 1 (New York: Abingdon, 1952), 463.

6. For some examples, see F. Schaeffer, Genesis in Space and Time, 41–43; also M. Kline, New Bible Commentary, 79–80.

7. For some examples, see G. von Rad, Genesis, trans. J. H. Marks (Philadelphia: The Westminster Press, 1961), 30–42. Von Rad discusses the “saga” in Genesis and its relation to history. While he is speaking of the later chapters of Genesis, others would see the principles as applying to the earlier chapters of the book as well. See also Paul K. Jewett, Man as Male and Female (Grand Rapids: Eerdmans 1975), 122; C. S. Lewis, The Problem of Pain (New York: Macmillan, 1971), 77–88; and James Barr, The Bible in the Modern World (London: SCM Press, 1973), 172.

8. Among those who take this position are H. Lindsell, “Egalitarianism and Scriptural Infallibility,” Christianity Today, March 1976, 45–46; also Schaeffer, 41–43; Kline, 79–80.

9. For helpful discussions of the purpose of those accounts, see von Rad, 22; J. L. McKenzie, The Two-Edged Sword (Milwaukee: Bruce, 1956), 113–115.

10. See the quote in the footnote on p. ##8 for a statement of such an approach.

11. See, among others who make this point, von Rad, 55; U. Cassuto, A Commentary on the Book of Genesis, pt. 1, trans. Israel Abrahams (Jerusalem: The Magnes Press, 1961), 57; Bruce Vawter, A New Catholic Commentary on Holy Scripture (London: Thomas Nelson & Sons, 1969), 175.

12. An example of such overinterpretation can be found in V. Mollenkott, “Women and the Bible,” Sojourners, February 1976, 22.

13. For the first view, see Maly, The Jerome Biblical Commentary, ed. Raymond Brown (Englewood Cliffs: Prentice-Hall, 1968), 12; John Marks, The Interpreter’s One-Volume Commentary on the Bible (New York: Abingdon, 1971), 4–5. For the second view, see McKenzie, 113.

14. For a full discussion of this idea with later applications, see DeFraine, Adam and the Family of Man (New York: Alba House, 1965).

15. On Adam’s being portrayed in Genesis as God’s son, see Cassuto, 135, and von Rad, 80. A. Feuillet takes a different and less likely approach in his reference to the groomsman as shoshebin in “La dignité et le rôle de la femme d’après quelques textes Pauliniens: comparaison avec l’Ancien Testament,” New Testament Studies (NTS) 21, no. 2 (1975): 157–191.

16. For some instances, see von Rad, 87; Cassuto, 130; Vawter, On Genesis, 74; Maly, 12.

17. For rib as “side” or “flank” see R. Batey, “The Μια Σαρξ Union of Christ and the Church,” NTS 13, no. 3 (April 1967): 271; Q. M. Adams, Neither Male Nor Female (Elms Court, Great Britain: Arthur H. Stockwell, 1973), 18. For some helpful discussion on the significance of “rib,” see Marks, 5; Cassuto, 134.

18. On this point, Jewett (120–121) attempts to draw a sharp distinction between v. 23 and v. 24, between Adam’s statement (part of the narrative) and the following verse which he views as a theological reflection on Adam’s statement which is subsequent and secondary. His purpose in drawing such a sharp distinction is to distinguish between sexuality (i.e., being men and women) and marriage, and to assert that it is sexuality which is of primary significance here, and marriage as an expression of sexuality is only of secondary importance. While the distinction is important for him, it is not important for our purposes. His reflection on these passages, however, is accurate. He says, “In other words, in the Old Testament as a whole the presupposition of marriage merges with the reality of marriage. In the Jewish scriptures, the man and the woman in their mutual relationship are viewed almost exclusively as husband and wife, as father and mother.” This observation is correct from the exegetical viewpoint. The Old Testament clearly views marriage and family life (including reproduction) as the purpose for which God made man male and female. However, to attempt to separate v. 24 from v. 23 and to say that the narrative represents a more primitive view and the following verse contains a subsequent and secondary theological reflection is to make a division in the text which seems unwarranted.

19. For helpful discussions on “cleave” see Brueggeman, 540; Cassuto, 137; Feuillet, 178.

20. See G. Tavard, Woman in Christian Tradition (Notre Dame: University of Notre Dame Press, 1973), 6. Tavard’s interpretation of Genesis is somewhat eccentric and seems to be dictated more by an approach to men-women relationships that comes from modern society than it does from something that is actually in the text.

21. Von Rad, 80.

22. For interpretations of the word “fit” (keneged) see, e.g., von Rad, 80; Cassuto, 127–128; Vos, 16–17.

23. For helpful observations here, see Vos, 18n24; Maly, 12.

24. Vos, 18n24.

25. For a discussion of the man’s representative headship in Israelite society, see Vos, 49–50.

Chapter 2

Sin and the New Adam

1. Ambrose, in De Paradiso, 309–356, discusses at length the consequences of the Fall on man’s and woman’s relationship with God and with one another. Cf. von Rad, 87–93.

2. Some commentators have understood Satan’s approaching woman first as a result of her sexual attractiveness and his desire for her. See Hanson, Studies in the Pastoral Epistles (London: SPCK, 1968), 65–77. On woman as more appealing, see Trible, 256. The more common and more likely interpretation involves seeing some sort of heightened vulnerability on the part of woman. E.g., von Rad, 87–88; J. Bailey, “Initiation and the Primal Woman in Gilgamesh and Gen 2–3,” Journal of Biblical Literature, June 1970, 148; E. Stein, “The Vocation of Man and Woman According to Nature and to Grace,” in Writings of Edith Stein, ed. Hilda Graef (London: Peter Owen, 1956), 105–106; Benno Jacob, Genesis, The First Book of the Bible (New York: KTAV Publishing House, 1974), 22.

3. Those subscribing to view 1 fall into two very different categories. There are those (e.g., Schaeffer, 93–94; cf. Philo, “On the Creation of the World,” The Works of Philo Judaeus, trans. C. D. Yonge [London: George Bell & Sons, 1890], 50–51) who see subordination as a result of the curse, yet understand Genesis 3:16 as something to be followed. On the other hand, the view has recently been taken up by many feminists (e.g., Trible, 257; Kress, Whither Womankind? [St. Meinrad: Abbey Press, 1975], 26–28) whose conclusions differ vastly from those in the first category. They see Genesis 3:16 and subordination as something to be abolished. For those holding view 2, in opposition to view 1, see as an example, Vos, 28ff., in his discussion of man’s “headship” become “lordship,” and Feuillet, 168. For an example of view 3, see Ambrose, De Paradiso, 350: “Servitude, therefore, of this sort is a gift of God. Wherefore, compliance with this servitude is to be reckoned among blessings.”

4. Some examples of the positive usage of mashal and kyrieuō in scripture are listed below. Often, they refer to God’s rule over his people or over creation.

mashal: Jgs 8:22–23; Ps 59:13; 66:7; 89:9; 103:19; Is 40:10; Zech 6:13

kyrieuō: Rom 14:9; Tm 6:15 in Septuagint (often translating mashal): Chr 14:7; Chr 20:6; Dn 5:21

5. Among the scholars who hold this position are Vos, 30f.; Maly, 13; Marks, 5–6; Kline, 85; and Jacob, 30.

6. For a fuller discussion of these concepts, see C. K. Barrett, From First Adam to Last (New York: Scribner’s, 1962). Jesus is in many aspects a contrast to Adam and hence has been described as a “converse type.”

7. The title “Son of Man,” which Jesus most commonly used for himself, possibly has reference to his being the new Adam. For this understanding, see Jeremias, TDNT, 1:141–143.

8. Batey, 280, makes this point, as does N. A. Dahl, “Christ, Creation and the Church,” The Background of the New Testament and Its Eschatology (Cambridge: Cambridge University Press, 1956), 438–443.

9. See, for one example of a discussion that begins with such an assumption as if there were no alternative, Scanzoni and Hardesty, All We’re Meant to Be (Waco: Word Books, 1974), 110.

10. Jewett, 8. The foreword, quoted in the text, was written by Virginia Mollenkott.

11. Scanzoni/​Hardesty, 110.

12. Swidler, 29.

Chapter 3

The Family  ▷  Husbands and Wives

1. The format of this chapter is a commentary on a number of New Testament passages which illustrate the basic pattern of family roles for men and women in the family. A comprehensive social history of Jewish and Christian family roles in biblical times is beyond the scope of this book. The footnotes, however, will cite fuller treatments of the different points and provide justifications for the points made here from the perspective of social historical study. Most helpful among the available books have been: Roland de Vaux, Ancient Israel, vol. 1 (New York: McGraw Hill, 1961); J. Pederson, Israel: Its Life and Culture, vols. 1–4 (Copenhagen: Povl Branner, 1926, 1940); David R. Mace, Hebrew Marriage (New York: Philosophical Library, 1953); J. Duncan M. Derrett, Jesus’s Audience (London: Darton, Longman & Todd, 1973); Raphael Patai, Sex and Family in the Bible and the Middle East (Garden City: Doubleday, 1959); and Joachim Jeremias, Jerusalem in the Time of Jesus (London: SCM Press, 1969).

2. The description of the importance of household life contained in this paragraph holds true not only for biblical society, but for most if not all pre-industrial societies. See pp. 502505 for a discussion of the family in traditional and technological society.

3. This parallel between household and community is related to the earlier Jewish conception of the nation as an amalgamation of tribes, a family descended from a common ancestor. Among those who discuss this, see Mace, 66. The Christian community is not a blood grouping, but it is nonetheless viewed as a “brotherhood” or “race” or family grouping in the New Testament.

4. On the term proistēmi, see Reicke, TDNT, 6:701–702. As to other possible translations, the passage in Tm 3:4–5, which contains this root twice, has for instance, been rendered alternatively: “rule” (KJV), “manage” (RSV, NAB), “control” (NEB), and “preside over” (American Bible Union Version).

5. Reicke makes this point in his discussion of proistēmi in TDNT, 6:702.

6. For the use of “shepherd,” see Jeremias, TDNT, 6:485–499.

7. Various features of the portrait of Job given in the text can be found in Torczyner, The Book of Job (Jerusalem: Kiryath Sepher, 1967), 410–419; S. A. Hirsch, Commentary on the Book of Job (London: Williams and Norgate, 1905), 193–198; Kissane, The Book of Job (Dublin: Brown and Nolan, 1939), 181–194. See also Pope, Job, The Anchor Bible, vol. 15 (New York: Doubleday, 1973), 207–216; R. A. F. MacKenzie, JBC, 527.

8. Though the Jewish father of Jesus’ day held substantial power over the lives of his family, his use of authority was formed and restricted by accepted standards of righteousness. See Patai, 122; Stuart A. Queen and Robert W. Habenstein, The Family in Various Cultures (New York: Lippincott, 1952), 166–167.

9. Many passages concerning God’s requirement of righteousness in Israel’s rulers can be found throughout the scripture. For the first three kings, for example, see Sm 12:14–15, 13:13–14, and 15:10–23 (Saul); Sm 12:7–14 (David); Kgs 3:14 (Solomon). See further Kgs 22:14–20; Jer 22:3–5.

10. Homily 20 on Ephesians (PG 62:134, 142). English translation in A Select Library of Nicene and Post-Nicene Fathers, ed. Philip Schaff, vol. 13 (New York: Charles Scribner’s Sons, 1905), 146, 148.

11. For discussions of the superiority of this title, see A. Cohen, Proverbs (London: The Soncino Press, 1952), 211. Rabbi S. Hirsch, “The Jewish Woman,” in In Accordance with His Will (Oak Park, 1976), 40; J. T. Forestell, JBC, 505.

12. Cohen, pp. xi, xii, comments along these lines in his introduction to the Proverbs.

13. For a helpful discussion of this view see R. B. Y. Scott, Proverbs and Ecclesiastes, The Anchor Bible, vol. 18 (New York: Doubleday, 1965), 3–9.

14. Forestell, 505, and Cohen, 211, among others argue for seeing the poem this way.

15. There is not adequate evidence from contemporary sources to definitively describe the arrangement, but anthropological studies of comparable societies indicate that the arrangement suggested here would be a likely one. See comments on division of labor by sex in Roy G. D’Andrade, “Sex Differences and Cultural Institutions,” in The Development of Sex Differences, ed. Eleanor E. Maccoby (Stanford University Press, 1966), 176; and George Murdock, Social Structure (New York: Macmillan, 1949), 7.

16. Cohen, 211, and Hirsch, 40, substantiate this interpretation.

17. Markus Barth’s comments in this regard are useful. See his Ephesians 4–6, The Anchor Bible, vol. 34a (New York: Doubleday, 1974), 711. One is also reminded of such Old Testament women as Jael and Judith as figures who render more relevant the military allusion mentioned above.

18. PG 62:136.

19. Hirsch, 41n1, comments helpfully on the economic significance of the woman’s accumulation of savings.

20. Most pre-industrial societies foster a significant female economic role as a result of the importance of the family unit. See Judith Blake, “The Changing Status of Women in Developed Countries,” Scientific American, September 1974, 138; and Chapter Eighteen in this volume.

21. On the function of the city gates, see Cohen, 6; Pope, 204–210; R. B. Y. Scott, The Way of Wisdom (New York: Macmillan, 1971), 8.

22. For example, Raymond Brown, The Gospel According to John I–XII, Anchor Bible, vol. 29 (New York: Doubleday, 1966), 218.

23. On the mother’s role in raising the children, see Encyclopedia Judaica, vol. 6 (Jerusalem: Keter, 1971), 1167. See also de Vaux, 48–49; H. Daniel-Rops, Daily Life in the Time of Jesus (New York: Hawthorn Books, 1962), 112.

24. Tos. Kidd. 1:11 (and its parallels). See further, Strack/​Billerbeck, 2:380.

25. For helpful treatments of the Jewish father-son relationship, see Gerald Blidstein, Honor Thy Father and Mother (New York: KTAV, 1975); Mace, 166; Patai, 125–127; Schrenk, TDNT, 5:974–975.

26. On customs of inheritance and the parable of the prodigal son, see J. D. M. Derrett, Law in the New Testament (London: Darton, Longman & Todd, 1970), 110–111; and Schrenk, TDNT, 5:983–984.

27. Even more, the paradigm father-son relationship was the relationship between the father and the eldest son, because the eldest son most fully succeeded to his father’s place. On the father-son relationship as a stable adult relationship, see Blidstein, pp. xii–xiii, 33, 119–121, 140.

28. Mace, 72–73, discusses the son’s succeeding to his father’s place.

29. Philippe Ariès, Centuries of Childhood (New York: Random House, 1962), provides a good description of how apprenticing worked in Western European society during the Middle Ages. However, apprenticeship was probably more common in Medieval Europe than among Jews or Christians in New Testament times. The rabbi-disciple relationship is the one commonly described instance of it in scripture. Apprenticeship outside of the master-disciple relationship and special hardship cases was probably uncommon in first-century Palestine. “In a simple society like that of Palestine, a trade would be taught within a family” (R. Brown, 218).

30. M. Aberbach, “The Relations Between Master and Disciple in the Talmudic Age,” in Essays Presented to Chief Rabbi Israel Brodie, ed. Zimmels, Rabbinowitz and Firestein, Jews’ College Publications, New Series, no. 3 (London: The Soncino Press, 1967), 1ff. For a comparison of the master-disciple relationship with the father-son relationship, see Blidstein, 137–157.

31. For fuller descriptions of the rearing of daughters, see Daniel-Rops, 112; and Mace, 215.

32. In fact, it was common to marry a cousin or a niece. In such a case the breach between the wife’s two families is substantially reduced. See Jeremias, 365–366.

33. On the father’s responsibility for discipline, see Mace, 215.

Chapter 4

The Family  ▷  Key Texts

1. The concept of biblical theology used here is one which sees biblical theology as a descriptive, historical discipline. This would be the approach to biblical theology of, for example, James Barr in The Bible in the Modern World (London: SCM Press, 1975), 135–136, or George E. Ladd in “The Search for Perspective,” Interpretation 25, no. 1 (January 1971): 48. There is a different approach to biblical theology which would emphasize its character as a theology. Hence it would adopt the view as a premise of biblical theology that the Bible has a unity and that the role of biblical theology is to state that unity either for the Bible as a whole, or for parts of it, or for an aspect of “Biblical thought.” Heinrich Schlier expresses such an approach forcefully in “The Meaning and Function of a Theology of the New Testament,” in Herbert Vorgrimler, Dogmatic vs. Biblical Theology (London: Burns and Oates, 1964), 90–94. Such a notion of biblical theology comes closest to the phrase “the teaching of scripture” as used in this book. See Brevard Childs, Biblical Theology in Crisis (Philadelphia: The Westminster Press, 1970), 97–107, for a helpful survey of this issue and some of the consequences of it. For the most part, however, any approach to biblical theology makes the Bible itself a central concern. Here, the concern is with the teaching which the Bible gives on a subject, and hence exegetical and descriptive material is only brought in insofar as it clarifies the message of the New Testament as to what should be the social roles of men and women.

2. Some who write on this passage begin the passage at Ephesians 5:21, often on the basis that v. 22 depends upon the preceding verse for its verb. An accurate way of understanding verse 21 is as a heading for a whole set of instructions to follow—the first being to husbands and wives (beginning in v. 22). The position of Ephesians 5:21 will become clear in the analysis of the structure of Ephesians 5:21–6:9 on p. 77. See J. Sampley, And the Two Shall Become One Flesh (Cambridge: Cambridge University Press, 1971), 116, and Barth, 608–609, as examples of perceiving Ephesians 5:21 as an opening statement to the entire subsequent section (Eph 5:22–6:9).

3. The New Testament “household codes,” or Haustafeln, have been the subject of considerable scholarly discussion and debate for decades. The issues of whether or not they represent an earlier Christian catechism, and whether the roots of this material are Hellenistic, Jewish, or exclusively Christian in origin have been frequently discussed. For a good short survey of recent scholarship in the area, see Crouch, 9–31.

4. Barth, 607. Among the commentaries on Ephesians, Barth’s is especially valuable. His work will be cited frequently in the following discussion of this passage. Another work containing very useful material is J. Sampley’s book cited above. It will also appear in the following footnotes with some frequency.

5. Barth, 608, 662–668, provides a more in-depth justification for this approach to “the fear of Christ”/“the fear of the Lord.” For further helpful development of this subject, see H. R. Balz, TDNT, 9:189–219, as well as Balz’s article “Furcht vor Gott?” Evangelische Theologie 29, no. 12 (1969): 626–644, and J. Becker, “Gottesfurcht im Alten Testament,” Analecta Biblica 25 (1965): 85–111.

6. John 4:18 could be read to contradict this view. John 4:18, however, is explicitly about a fear of punishment and not about the fuller fear of the Lord which is the beginning of wisdom. The love involved, moreover, is perfection in Christian living. John 4:18, therefore, means that we should fulfill the commandments and hence have nothing to fear from the judgment. This “love” closely connected as it is with keeping the commandments (5:3) is almost a synonym for fear of the Lord. See here also the discussion referenced in footnote on pp. 8181.

7. Some writers (see Crouch, 37–73) stress that the household codes and similar materials have secular parallels (Stoic teaching, for instance), and the teaching in the New Testament should simply be viewed as saying that these things hold for Christians as well as non-Christians. The opinion in this paragraph does not necessarily conflict with such a view. It simply observes that the household codes present this material as something Christians ought to do out of their obedience to the Lord. The interpretation of the household codes in relation to non-Christian influences will be taken up in Chapter Eleven.

8. Various other interpretations of “as to the Lord” which were not mentioned in the text tend to be developments of these two main lines of interpretation. Barth, 612, gives a survey of interpretations of “as to the Lord.” Among them he mentions that the phrase can indicate both the urgency and the limit of the wives’ subordination. This interpretation falls under the first category mentioned in the text. Two other interpretations Barth offers (first, that wives give way to husbands in the same unrestricted manner as to Christ—in everything; and secondly, that a wife’s subordination to the husband and to Christ are as inseparable as love of God and love of neighbor), are closely related—the latter being a strong version of the former. These two interpretations apply to the second general category mentioned in the text. Barth mentions two other unlikely interpretations in his survey. The notion offered by some that “Lord” should not be capitalized, and that it actually refers to the husband (i.e., “as to your lord”) is unlikely, both because of the grammar involved, and because the whole context of the passage involves a comparison of the marriage relationship with that of Christ the Lord and his Church. A further unlikely interpretation is that the phrase indicates that submission is exclusively to Christ, in such a way that the husband is a mere vehicle or occasion for expressing submission to Christ. See the comments in the text on the faultiness of this interpretation (pp. 7980).

9. For example, the two Greek verbs in v. 29, translated “provide” and “care for” in Barth’s translation, express such love. Sampley, 144, points out that the two verbs together produce a generalization, signifying that the husband “does everything possible to take care of” his wife. The first verb is also used in Ephesians 6:4 in context of the parent-child relationship, while the second verb appears in 1 Thessalonians 2:7, also in a context of caring for children. See M. Barth, 634–635; F. Foulkes, The Epistle of Paul to the Ephesians (Grand Rapids: Eerdmans, 1963), 160; E. Best, One Body in Christ (London: SPCK, 1955), 178n1.

10. Chrysostom clearly makes this point about the basis of the husband’s care for his wife in Homily 20 on Ephesians (PG 62:141).

11. See Delling, TDNT, 8:39–46, for a good survey of the New Testament use of the word. See also H. G. Liddell and R. Scott, A Greek-English Lexicon (Oxford: Clarendon, 1940), 1897, for the word’s secular Greek usages.

12. As Barth points out (710), the subordination Paul expects of the wife is “a voluntary attitude of giving in, cooperating, assuming responsibility, and carrying a burden. He expects this kind of subordination only of Christ and of persons who are ‘in Christ.’”

13. Among those who attempt to divorce subordination from obedience are E. Kähler, Die Frau in den paulinischen Briefen (Zurich/​Frankfurt: Gotthelf, 1960); Adams, 171–177; and Scanzoni/​Hardesty, 80–105. The justification offered for this separation is often that of denying that “blind obedience” is required of the wife, and rooting the voluntary aspect of her submission in the New Testament. While these points are in themselves well taken, they do not exclude the very real aspect of obedience which is also evident in the New Testament idea of submission—an obedience which should not be misinterpreted by equating all obedience with extreme forms of it. Thus, for instance, obedience need not be “blind obedience.” (See further the discussion of “in everything” on p. 83 of this chapter for a clarification of the limits of obedience.) These observations, of course, do not mean that subordination is to be equated with obedience, nor that Paul in this chapter might not have specifically avoided using the word “obedience” for the wife’s relation to her husband to indicate its difference from that of a child or slave.

14. Barth, 620–621, does a brief survey of the phrase “in everything.” He points out that, on one hand, “in everything” cannot mean mere blind obedience, especially when obedience would involve acting contrary to God’s commands. On the other hand, Barth states, 621, “it is improper to explain the words ‘in everything’ by compiling a short or long list of exemptions to prove that ‘in everything’ actually means ‘not in everything.’” See also Sampley’s comments on this phrase, 126, which follow in a similar vein.

15. Aquila, one of Paul’s Jewish contemporaries, likewise always translated the Hebrew ros with kephalē in his Greek translation of the Old Testament. See Schlier, TDNT, 8:675, for a discussion of the use of kephalē in Judaism as well as in the New Testament. A good exposition of the view that the head governed through the eye can be found in Basil, The Long Rules, Q. 24, in The Ascetic Works of St. Basil, trans. W. K. Lowther Clark (London: SPCK, 1925), 191.

16. For a useful examination of the meaning of “head” and “body” in Ephesians, as well as for some discussion of the head-body imagery, and the phrase “the body of Christ,” see Barth’s lengthy discussion in vol. 1 of his commentary on Ephesians, 183–199. See also, Sampley’s discussion (61–66) of some of the possible origins of the head-body imagery in Ephesians.

17. Chrysostom, Homily 20 on Ephesians (PG 62:142), makes use of this application to Christ of going forth from his father to take his bride, the church.

18. This point is often missed in commentaries on Ephesians, which can tend to assume that Christian marriage offers instruction on Christ and the church (as, for example, G. B. Caird, Paul’s Letters from Prison, New Clarendon Bible [Oxford: Oxford University Press, 1976], 88–89; E. Goodspeed, The Meaning of Ephesians [Chicago: University of Chicago Press, 1933], 61–62), or which can speak of Christian marriage in general as a type of Christ and the church (rather than the “marriage” of Adam and Eve, as Paul indicates in Eph 5:31–32). An example of this notion can be found in E. K. Simpson, The Epistle of Paul to the Ephesians (Grand Rapids: Eerdmans, 1957), 128–134. The recognition that this passage uses the example of Christ and the church to teach about marriage (and not the reverse) is clearly expressed by I. Muirhead, “The Bride of Christ,” Scottish Journal of Theology 5, no. 2 (June 1952): 186: “The thought moves from the Bridegroom and the Bride to the bridegroom and the bride, and not vice versa.” Barth, 655, makes this point in a similar fashion.

19. Concerning the meaning of the Greek term mystērion, see Sampley, 86–96; Barth, 641–644; Foulkes, 162; Bornkamm, TDNT, 4:832. While considerable agreement exists among scholars as to the meaning of this term in the rest of Ephesians, there is much discussion as to its meaning in Ephesians 5:32. Some, such as R. Brown, “Mysterion,” Biblica 40 (1959): 83–84, and Barth, 642–644, see its meaning as different from other occurrences in Ephesians, and as pointing to a scripture passage which contains a deeper (allegorical or typological) meaning than appears at first. Others, including Sampley, 90–96, and R. Batey, New Testament Nuptial Imagery (Leiden: Brill, 1971), 31n5, see its meaning in v. 32 as consistent with its use throughout Ephesians, and hold that “mystery” here refers not merely to a deeper meaning in scripture, but specifically to the “mystery of Christ” as referred to throughout Ephesians. As Sampley states: “when a substantive like mystērion is used six times in such crucial places as it is in Ephesians, there is considerable probability of some lines of continuity of meaning between the uses in the different contexts” (91). The two views, however, are not mutually exclusive.

20. There is widespread agreement that portions of Peter and Ephesians resemble one another, although there is some discussion as to the source of their similarities. Some commentators, such as J. Moffatt, An Introduction to the Literature of the New Testament (New York: Scribner’s, 1925), 381–383, consider Ephesians to be in some way dependent upon Peter, while others, such as F. W. Beare, The First Epistle of Peter (Oxford: Blackwell, 1970), 219–220, and C. L. Mitton, “The Relationship of Peter and Ephesians,” Journal of Theological Studies, n.s., 1, no. 1 (April 1950): 68–73, consider Peter to be in some way dependent upon Ephesians. Others, such as E. G. Selwyn, The First Epistle of Peter (London: Macmillan, 1947), 422–439, consider both epistles to be dependent upon earlier catechetical, liturgical, and confessional materials from the New Testament church. Some of the discussion extends beyond a consideration of the two passages being treated here, and it is enough for present purposes to note the resemblances and the differences between Peter 3:1–7, and the household code material in Ephesians 5:22–33.

21. Some (e.g., A. R. C. Leaney, The Letters of Peter and Jude, Cambridge Bible Commentaries [Cambridge: Cambridge University Press, 1967], 41–42), have read the opening word—“likewise”—in the address to wives as indicating that wives are being commanded to have the same kind of submission that was prescribed previously for the slave to his master. Such an interpretation of the word is unnecessary, however, as Beare, 152–153, and E. Best, Peter, New Century Bible (London: Oliphants, 1971), 124, clearly point out. Selwyn, 182, suggests that this word, which appears both in v. 1 at the opening address to the wives, and in v. 7 at the address to the husbands, belongs in some way to the underlying household code of subordination.

22. Chrysostom, Homily 20 on Ephesians (PG 62:141).

23. The notion of being Sarah’s children is one which goes back to the Old Testament (see especially, Is 51:1–2). B. Reicke, The Epistles of James, Peter, and Jude, Anchor Bible, vol. 37 (New York: Doubleday, 1964), 101–102, points out that the role of Sarah, as progenitor by faith with Abraham of the people of God is very significant. In Peter, Sarah is noted for her obedience; while in Hebrews 11:11, she is cited for her faith.

24. Many commentators have suggested that Proverbs 3:25 might also be behind the phrase “let nothing make you fear.” Among them are Beare, 157; A. Stibbs, The First Epistle of Peter (Grand Rapids: Eerdmans, 1971), 127, who suggests that Proverbs 3:25–27 expresses one of the themes of the whole letter; and Selwyn, 408ff., who suggests that the third chapter of Proverbs was used in early church catechism—as it is alluded to in Peter 3:6, and is quoted from in Peter 5:5 and (the same passage—Prv 3:34) in James 4:6.

25. Among those who suggest this view are Selwyn, 432–435; Beare, 154–155; and Leaney, 43.

26. That the inner adornment points primarily to a quality of submissiveness is noted by Beare, 156, where he states that Peter “seems to look upon the exhibition of a loyal ‘subjection’ to husbands as a cardinal element—almost as the cardinal element—in the inward, spiritual adornment which he commends.” Best, 126, suggests the unusual and unlikely notion that “spirit” in this verse (and, he further suggests, in all its occurrences in Peter), refers not to the human spirit, but to the Holy Spirit. The vast majority of translations and commentators, however, would point in the direction of the analysis given in the text above.

27. For brief expositions of the meanings of these words in this context, see Selwyn, 184, and Stibbs, 125.

28. Beare, 153, makes the point that scripture teaches subjection (or submission) to be a duty of all Christians in the appropriate times and places.

29. For justification of this view, see Beare, 157; Stibbs, 128.

30. The argument is sometimes made that because of the close parallel between Peter 3:3–4 and Timothy 2:9–11 that “weakness” in Peter 3:7 should be interpreted by Timothy 2:14–15 and hence would refer to Eve’s being deceived. For instance, see K. Stendahl, The Bible and the Role of Women, trans. E. Sander (Philadelphia: Fortress Press, 1966), 28. That argument rests upon seeing an overall parallelism to the two texts. On most other grounds than the one clear parallel, the texts are dissimilar. To deal adequately with this observation it would be enough to understand Peter 3:3–4 and Timothy 2:9–11 as instances of an exhortation circulating among early Christians, with perhaps some saying (logion) as its source that becomes modified in both texts. See Chapter Eight for a treatment of this matter in the context of the discussion of Timothy 2:8–15. See Chapter Sixteen for a discussion of men and women in regard to physical strength.

31. The term “brother” used in this passage from Matthew would certainly be understood to apply to women as well. As was mentioned above (see footnote on pp. 8181), it was common for rabbis to interpret such words as “neighbor” in terms of the marital relationship (as Paul appears to do in Eph 5:28). See Crouch, 113; Sampley, 30–34.

Chapter 5

The People  ▷  Service and Position

1. See for instance, J. Leipoldt, Die Frau in der antiken Welt und im Urchristentum (Leipzig: Koehler and Amelang, 1954), 147–155; and Thierry Maertens, The Advancing Dignity of Woman in the Bible, trans. Sandra Dibbs (De Pere, Wisconsin: St. Norbert Abbey Press, 1969), 184–193.

2. See for instance, Jean Daniélou, The Ministry of Women in the Early Church (London: Faith Press, 1961); Roger Gryson, Le Ministère des femmes dans L’Église Ancienne (Gembloux: Duculot, 1972); and Charles Meyer, “Ordained Women in the Early Church,” Chicago Studies 4, no. 3 (Fall 1965): 285–309.

3. Eusebius, Ecclesiastical History 5.17.3 (PG 20:471–472).

4. For a good discussion of the distinction and its possible uses, see B. Yocum, 48.

5. For a discussion of the transition from the diaconal system to the charitable institutions, see S. B. Clark, Unordained Elders and Renewal Communities (New York: Paulist Press, 1976), 70–74.

6. For a particularly helpful interpretation of these passages see Jean Colson, “Das Diakonat im Neuen Testament,” Diakonia in Christo (Freiburg: Herder, 1962), 3–22. For helpful summaries of the history of the diaconate in the early church, see W. Croce, “Aus der Geschichte des Diakonates,” Diakonia in Christo (Freiburg: Herder, 1962), 92–128, and another article in the same book by Colson, “Diakon und Bischof in den ersten drei Jahrhunderten der Kirche,” 23–30. Other helpful discussions of the role of the “seven” in Acts 6 can be found in Lemaire, Les ministères aux origines de L’Église (Paris: Editions du Cerf, 1971); and M. Miguens, Church Ministries in New Testament Times (Arlington: Christian Culture Press, 1976), 40–43.

7. For example, Stählin, TDNT, 9:451n107, and T. B. Allworthy, Women in the Apostolic Church (Cambridge: Witteffer and Sons, 1917), 44, make this observation about Tabitha’s role in the community.

8. For a lengthy early description of the role of widows, see Didascalia Apostolorum 3.2 in Didascalia et Constitutiones Apostolorum, ed. F. X. Funk, vol. 1 (Paderborn, 1905), 184.9–186.2. For summaries of the history of the “order of widows,” see Stählin, 457–465; J. G. Davies, “Deacons, Deaconesses, and the Minor Orders in the Patristic Period,” Journal of Ecclesiastical History 14, no. 1 (April 1963): 5.

9. See for instance, the “church orders,” such as the Didascalia Apostolorum, in F. X. Funk; The Apostolic Constitutions in Funk; The Apostolic Tradition of Hippolytus, trans. B. S. Easton (Cambridge, 1924); The Apostolic Church Order, ed. T. Schermann, Die allgemeine Kirchenordnung, frühchristlicher Liturgien und kirchlicher Überlieferung, vol. 1 (St. GKA 3. Ergänzungsbend) (Paderborn, 1914), 12–34; I. E. Rahmani, Testamentum Domini Nostri Iesu Christi (Mainz, 1899). They all give materials on widows and were used in Syrian and Egyptian churches.

10. On women as apostolic workers, see Daniélou, 8ff.; also R. Brown, “Women in the Fourth Gospel,” Theological Studies 36, no. 4 (December 1975): 691–693.

11. See Rengstorf, TDNT, 1:4ff., for a good presentation of the basic meaning of the word.

12. An alternate translation of Philippians 4:2–3 can be found in the Jerusalem Bible:

I appeal to Evodia and I appeal to Syntyche to come to agreement with each other in the Lord; and I ask you, Syzygus, to be truly a “companion” and to help them in this. These women were a help to me when I was fighting to defend the Good News—and so, at the same time were Clement and the others who worked with me. Their names are written in the book of life.

13. Clement of Alexandria, Stromata 3.6.53 (GCS 52:20.20–25). For The Acts of Paul, see E. Hennecke, New Testament Apocrypha, vol. 2, ed. Schneemelcher (London: Butterworth, 1973), 269. See also Daniélou, 8–9. Evidence such as Clement’s, as well as passages like Corinthians 9:5, indicate that Paul was not the only apostle to work with women; rather, women traveled, probably as missionary workers, with the other apostles as well.

14. The evidence from the second century would indicate that deacons worked under bishops. (See Jean Colson, “Diakon und Bischof.”) While such a system cannot be read back into the New Testament with certainty, there is no evidence for another practical system.

15. Among those surveying the early evidence for deaconesses are Meyer, 288; Davies, 2; P. Hünermann, “Conclusions Regarding the Female Diaconate,” Theological Studies 36, no. 2 (May 1975), 327; and Fritz Zerbst, The Office of Woman in the Church, trans. A. G. Merkens (St. Louis: Concordia, 1955), 89. The Didascalia Apostolorum is the first full description of the position. Meyer, 297, notes the end of deaconesses in the West in the early middle ages, while Hünermann, 330, and Zerbst, 91, ascribe their disappearance to the end of the missionary era, and the resulting decrease in adult baptisms.

16. Among those who find the references to deaconesses in scripture are Daniélou, 14; Gryson, 31; Meyer, 287; and Hünermann, 326; while C. C. Ryrie, The Role of Women in the Church (Chicago: Moody Press, 1970), 85–91, does not find such to be the case, and Davies, 2, appears to be inclined against seeing any scriptural references as well.

17. Among those who have favored “wives” are the New English Bible (which has “deaconesses” as a marginal alternative), Davies (who actually reads “women in general”), 2, as well as such time-honored commentators as Luther, Calvin, Erasmus, Thomas Aquinas, and Ambrosiaster (who reads “women in general”) (CSEL 81/3:267.28–268.16). Those who here find a reference to deaconesses include Gryson, 31; Daniélou, 14; Meyer 287; Colson, La Fonction diaconale aux origines de L’Église (Bruges: Desclée de Brouwer, 1960), 64; as well as John Chrysostom (Homily 11 on Timothy, PG 62:553; Theodoret (PG 82:809); Theodore of Mopsuestia (Swete 2:128.9–129.12); and Clement of Alexandria (GCS 52:20.20–25). The problem with the absence of the possessive in interpreting the passage as applying to wives has been noted by Meyer, 287; Davies, 2; C. K. Barrett, The Pastoral Epistles (Oxford: Clarendon Press, 1963), 62; and J. Forget, “Diaconesses,” Dictionnaire de théologie catholique, 4:686. The Greek term in scripture would be diakonos, while later it was diakonissa. The change in title is likely only a word change, although it could also point to a change in understanding or approach.

18. A diversity of opinions can be found among commentators concerning whether Phoebe was or was not a “deaconess” in the sense of holding an established office in the church. Among those affirming that Phoebe held such a position are J. B. Lightfoot, Dissertations on the Apostolic Age (London: Macmillan, 1892), 148; J. Forget, “Diaconesses,” in Dictionnaire de théologie catholique, 4:686; H. Leclercq, “Diaconesse,” in Dictionnaire d’archéologie chrétienne et de liturgie, 4:725; Meyer, 286–287; and C. H. Dodd, The Epistle of Paul to the Romans, Moffatt New Testament Commentary (London: Harper, 1932), 234–235; as well as various Fathers of the church, including Origen (PG 14:1278) and Theodoret of Cyrus (PG 82:217–220). Others hold that it is unlikely that the office of deaconess had yet officially come into being, and that the title given to Phoebe is somewhat more general. Among these are Daniélou, 8; Hünermann, 325–326; Davies, 1; J. Armitage Robinson, “Deacons and Deaconesses,” Encyclopedia Biblica (New York: Macmillan, 1914), 1039; Ryrie, 86–90; and the church Father Ambrosiaster (CSEL 81/1:476.10–23, 477.10–22). Gryson, 22f., chooses something of a middle ground, as does A. Oepke, TDNT, 1:787, seeing the position of deaconess as somewhere in its process of formation, but perhaps not as clearly established as it was to become.

19. The term “servant” could be (a) a title for a position; (b) a general term for services rendered; (c) a term given to all those holding positions (e.g., Col 1:7); or (d) a term given to all Christians. The link with the church at Cenchreae makes the term sound more like (a) or a general term for commendation. If it were (c) or (d), the term would be used in reference to Christ or God, as in “servant of Christ.” The reading of Maertens, 189, who sees Phoebe as a “minister” participating in the government of the community, and not “confined to the ‘diaconate,’” is highly tenuous.

20. See, for example, Gryson, 23–24. Leipoldt, 98, points to ruling titles which were given to women in synagogues because of their service or financial contribution, but which carried no authority (e.g., archisynagogus). Prostatis could be the same sort of title. Ryrie, 86–88, bases his interpretation of the word on such a view.

21. It would be interesting to deal with the question of the relationship of the deaconess to the bishop, elders, and deacons by analyzing the question document by document and community by community. For instance, the Didascalia Apostolorum draws the strongest parallel between the deacon and deaconess. But the Didascalia is written for a small church in which there were either no elders apart from the bishop or elders who were not particularly active in caring for the congregation. All the “work” was done by the bishop and deacons and deaconesses. The deaconesses were very much like deacons, to be sure, but undoubtedly the deacons were more like elders than they were in other situations. Such analysis would probably reveal some significant differences in the way women were involved in pastoral care in different Christian communities, but it goes beyond our purposes for this book.

22. For some helpful descriptions of the functions of deaconesses, see Didascalia Apostolorum 3.12–13; Apostolic Constitutions 3.15; Meyer, 288–289; Zerbst, 89; Davies, 3.

23. Many have written concerning the question of the relationship between these two orders of women, among them Gryson, 9–17, who includes a longer survey discussion; Daniélou, 14, 84; Meyer, 292–293; Zerbst, 91. There is early evidence for an identity of the two: Apostolic Church Order 21; Ignatius of Antioch, Ad Smyr. 13.1, in J. B. Lightfoot, The Apostolic Fathers, pt. 2, vol. 2 (London: Macmillan, 1889), 323; and possibly Tertullian, De virginibus velandis (CCSL 2:1219.15–29). There is also evidence for a distinction: The Apostolic Constitutions 3.8; the Testamentum Domini Nostri, 1.40–43. Some suggest that, out of the larger body of widows in the community, some performed service that was analogous to that of the deacons: Daniélou, 14; Meyer, 257–288, 292. Timothy 3:11 and Titus 2:3 might, in this context, be understood to refer to widows. For the order of widows as having “ecclesiastical rank,” see Epiphanius, Panarion 79.2 (GCS 37:476.25–477.26), as well as Origen, Homilies on Isaiah 6.3 (GCS 33:273.9–19).

24. Epiphanius, Panarion 79.2 (GCS 37:476.25–477.26).

25. Examples of abbot-presbyters and abbess-deaconesses can be found in Palladius, Lausiac History 17.18, 58, 70.3, in Ancient Christian Writers, no. 34, trans. Robert Meyer (Westminster, Maryland: Newman, 1965). Clark, Unordained Elders, 50–70; Daniélou, 24; and Meyer, 297; discuss the development of abbess-deaconesses, and their parallel with abbot-presbyters.

26. One might further note that the terms “elderess” (presbytera) and even “bishopess” (episkopa) were sometimes ascribed to deaconesses. The term presbytera was used for the wife of a presbyter or elder (Gregory the Great, Dialogues 4.11 [PL 77:336]), but could also be used for deaconesses (Epiphanius, Panarion 79.4 [GCS 37:476.24–29]), to indicate the corresponding nature of the positions. Presbytera is used in modern Greek for the “priest’s wife.” Episkopa was a term used for the women who presided over (were “overseers” of) the women’s sections of the congregation. See Meyer, 294–296, for a discussion of these terms. These women clearly did not have the same authority as a presbyteros or episkopos.

27. For a fuller discussion of communal structures vis-à-vis institutional structures see S. B. Clark, Building Christian Communities (Notre Dame: Ave Maria, 1973), 33–40.

28. For a good description of the order of subordination in a Christian community, see Zerbst, 69–81.

29. Clement, “First Epistle to the Corinthians,” 37–38, Early Christian Writings (Baltimore: Penguin, 1968), 42–43; the critical Greek edition in J. B. Lightfoot, The Apostolic Fathers, pt. 1, 2:111–117.

30. Probably in the pastoral epistles the terms were identical in meaning, but later the term episkopos was reserved for the presiding elder. Some, e.g., N. Brox, “Historische und theologische Probleme der Pastoralbriefe des Neuen Testaments,” Kairos 11, no. 2 (1969): 91ff.; John Meier, “Presbyteros in the Pastoral Epistles,” Catholic Biblical Quarterly 35, no. 3 (July 1973): 328; and A. Cousineau, “Le sens de ‘presbuteros’ dans les Pastorales,” Science et Esprit 28, no. 2 (1976): 147–162; hold that in Timothy “bishops” were a special group of “presbyters.” Most, like A. Lemaire, “Conseils pour le minstère, Tm 1, 6–8, 13–14,” Assembl. Seign. 58 (1974): 61–66, would not accept this view. The differences in interpretation, however, are not significant for the basic discussion in the book.

31. See, for instance, Rengstorf, TDNT, 1:398–445, for a helpful discussion of some of these issues. See also R. Schnackenburg’s article “Apostolicity: The Present Position of Studies,” One in Christ 6 (1970): 243–273, for an overall survey of the subject in contemporary scholarship. For examples of those who argue for the view that apostles exercise a governmental authority in the early church, see R. Schnackenburg, The Church in the New Testament (London: Burns and Oates, 1974), 27–35; R. Brown’s discussion of issues concerning the position of apostles in Priest and Bishop: Biblical Reflections (New York: Paulist, 1970), 47–73; P. Grelot, “Les épîtres de Paul: la mission apostolique,” Le ministère et les ministères, ed. J. Delorme (Paris: Editions du Seuil, 1974), 49ff.; J. Colson, “Le ministère apostolique clans la littérature chrétienne primitive: apôtres et épiscopes ‘sanctificateurs des nations,’” L’Épiscopat et l’Église Universelle, ed. Y. Congar and B. Dupuy (Paris: Editions du Cerf, 1962), 135–169. H. von Campenhausen, Ecclesiastical Authority and Spiritual Power in the Church of the First Three Centuries (Stanford: Stanford University Press, 1969), 30–54, represents a somewhat different view of apostolic authority. While acknowledging the authority of the apostle over the churches he founded, von Campenhausen portrays that authority as highly individual, non-official, and very limited. He states:

However imperiously Paul the apostle may demand a hearing for Christ, however ingenuously he may put himself forward as a pattern for imitation, yet he cannot simply give orders. . . . They must themselves recognize in his instructions the ‘standard of teaching’ to which they are committed, and to which Paul in a sense merely “recalls” them, in order that they may affirm it for themselves, and freely and joyfully make it their own once more. (47)

Schnackenburg, 28–29, takes exception to von Campenhausen’s approach, stating

That surely cannot be an accurate picture. . . . His apostolic power in no way makes him dependent on the “freedom of the community” to follow him. But unmistakably he asks the Corinthians, “What will you? Shall I come to you with a rod, or in love and the spirit of gentleness?” (Cor 4:21).

While the term “apostle” was primarily a governmental term in New Testament times, to designate the Twelve, Paul, and probably some others, it is not clear that all who were called “apostles” in the New Testament had a governmental role (see footnote on p. 130 for a possible exception). The title as a governmental function was not used after the New Testament until it was revived by certain Protestant churches like the Irvingites. Gradually the term was used more for those who first brought Christianity or the gospel message somewhere and therefore used more in the sense of “evangelist.” In this meaning it was later commonly applied to women. St. Nino was called the “apostle of Georgia.” The title “apostle to the apostles” was given by some to Mary Magdalene in the middle ages, because she first told the apostles about the resurrection. The relation of the Twelve and others termed “apostles” as well as other possible distinctions among apostles or views about apostles in the early literature are beyond the scope of this work and do not affect the basic considerations here as long as the governmental nature of the apostolic position is recognized.

32. I. De la Potterie, “Titres missionaires du chrétien clans le Nouveau Testament,” Rapports de la XXXVIème Semaine de Missiologie, Louvain, 1966 (Paris: Desclée de Brouwer, 1966), 44–45.

33. While either form of the name is possible, “Junias” as a man’s name is nowhere else attested in the Greek. This is perhaps the weightiest grammatical argument for holding that the text refers to a woman. Andronicus and Junia, then, might be a husband-wife pair. However, even if Junia(s) were clearly a woman and were being referred to as an “apostle,” there would be a further question of the sense of the term—whether it would refer to actually holding the office or not (see note 31 above). Chrysostom, for example (Homily 31 on Romans, PG 60:670) seems to believe that it was an honorary title given to a woman (Junia) for special merit.

34. See, for developments of this possibility, Ryrie, 56, and J. Murray, The Epistle to the Romans (Grand Rapids: Eerdmans, 1975), 229–230.

35. For further substantiation of presbyteros as meaning “older man” as well as “elder” (as in Tm 5:1–2) see the discussion of this word by Bornkamm in TDNT, 6:666. See also Meier, 324–325. The interpretation given here is confirmed by a similar passage in Clement 1:3, an early church document that was probably written before 100 AD (Lightfoot, The Apostolic Fathers, 8–11).

36. Another possible interpretation, one not commonly held, is that the “church in so-and-so’s house” meant the community that lived together as a household. If this were correct, Nympha might have been a widow or virgin who was head of a household.

37. Certain feminists attempt to draw some unjustified conclusions from the reading of this name in the feminine (Nympha). However, it is worth noting (as does Gryson, 24n1) that, in fact, the majority of manuscripts have Nympha(s) in the masculine. This is certainly the reading which John Chrysostom had (Homily 12 on Colossians, PG 62:381), as well as that preferred by the NAB and La Bible de Jérusalem.

38. Daniélou, 14.

39. The last two elements of this pattern cannot be documented in any more than a sketchy way because of the limited evidence available. The New Testament evidence has been surveyed and supports both generalizations, though not with the strength that can claim conclusiveness. The generalizations, however, are greatly strengthened by social historical and anthropological study, not only that treated in Chapter Three, but also broader anthropological studies considered in Chapter Seventeen.

40. Priscilla might be seen as an exception to this in the case of Apollos (Acts 18:28). But it was not just Priscilla who instructed him. It was Priscilla and Aquila. And they could hardly be said to be raising him. The instance was more one of special instruction of a well-trained man in a situation where no church had yet been established.

41. Chrysostom, Homily 20 on Ephesians (PG 62:143); Homily 10 on Timothy (PG 62:549).

Chapter 6

Social Roles and Galatians 3:28

1. Among those taking such a position are Stendahl, The Bible and the Role of Women; Jewett, 112; C. Parvey, “The Theology and Leadership of Women in the New Testament,” in Religion and Sexism, ed. R. R. Ruether (New York: Simon and Schuster, 1974), 132–134; and V. Mollenkott, 25. It is interesting to note how recent is the “discovery” of Galatians 3:28 as the major scriptural teaching on men and women. Most of the books written on the subject of men and women before 1955 either do not give it consideration as a passage concerning the roles of men and women, or only mention it in passing. The passage does seem to have been used as a key text on men-women roles by some earlier Evangelicals fighting for women’s emancipation (e.g., Jessie Penn-Lewis in The Magna Carta of Women [Minneapolis: Bethany Fellowship, 1975], 99), and by some sects in the past such as the Quintillianists. (See Epiphanius, Panarion 49.2.1 [GCS 31:241.18–244.11].)

2. Scanzoni/​Hardesty, 18.

3. See K. Stendahl, Paul among Jews and Gentiles (Philadelphia: Fortress Press, 1976), 18–19, both for a helpful treatment of the pedagogue and for a treatment of the centrality of the issue of circumcision in Galatians.

4. Vos, 49–50, discusses women’s participation through the circumcision of the males.

5. For helpful discussions here, see Stendahl, The Bible and the Role of Women, 32; David Daube, The New Testament and Rabbinic Judaism (New York: ARNO Press, 1973), 442. Both of these writers argue for the connection of Galatians 3:28 with the creation narrative.

6. The prayer is quoted from the version of S. Singer, Authorized Daily Prayer Book (London, 1939), 5–6.

7. Strack/​Billerbeck, 3:558. See 557–563 for a treatment of the three distinctions and their significance in relation to the law.

8. For helpful treatments of this, see Stendahl, The Bible and the Role of Women, 27–28; and John Bligh, Galatians: A Discussion of St. Paul’s Epistle (London: St. Paul Publications, 1969), 314–329.

9. Strack/​Billerbeck makes the comparison with the full proselyte, but that seems to miss the point of the category that Paul had in mind. See rather Crouch, 90–95. Being a Jew had legal consequences in the Roman Empire. When one became a Jew, he actually changed nations legally and became subject to the Jewish government in the diaspora. The use of the term “Greek” rather than Gentile might refer to the fact that it was precisely the “God-fearers” or resident alien proselytes, who were at issue, that is, precisely the proselytes who were still Greek and had not become Jewish.

10. On Galatians 3:28 as “the great breakthrough” see pp. 141142 and footnote on pp. 149150. A clear statement of the view that finds Galatians 3:28 incompatible with the other New Testament statements can be found in Jewett, 112–113:

Because these two perspectives—the Jewish and the Christian—are incompatible, there is no satisfying way to harmonize the Pauline argument for female subordination with the larger Christian vision of which the great apostle to the Gentiles was himself the primary architect. It appears from the evidence that Paul himself sensed that his view of the man/​woman relationship, inherited from Judaism, was not altogether congruous with the gospel he preached.

11. There are, to be sure, views that Corinthians 11:2–16 was not written close to the time of Galatians, but was an interpolation. See W. O. Walker, “Corinthians 11:2–16 and Paul’s Views Regarding Women,” Journal of Biblical Literature 94, no. 1 (March 1975): 94–110. Walker’s views are clearly conditioned by the kind of position which assumes an incompatibility on the basis of a modern approach. The normal view of almost all exegetes would be to see Corinthians 11:2–16 as written close to the time of Galatians 3:28. Likewise, even if Paul did not write Colossians, the fact that someone so close to his time and thought could hold both opinions would argue for the view that they were not incompatible in Paul’s mind either. Further confirmation of the fact that no incoherence is involved in Paul’s teaching is the presence in Peter 3:7 of the view that wives are both joint heirs and subordinate, uniting the themes of Galatians 3:28 and Corinthians 11:2–16.

12. For the use of this phrase in contemporary exegesis, see Stendahl, The Bible and the Role of Women, 31–32.

13. Italics mine. See Madeleine Boucher, “Some Unexplored Parallels to Cor 11:11–12 and Gal 3:28: The New Testament on the Role of Women,” Catholic Biblical Quarterly 31, no. 1 (January 1969): 56. In general this is a very helpful article. It misses the point in this case, however, by finding the basis of comparison on any privilege rather than in status before God according to the law. Social privilege nowhere comes into the discussion in Galatians except possibly as a consequence of religious status.

14. The distinction behind this view is a traditional Lutheran one. Stendahl, in The Bible and the Role of Women, 32–34, gives a brief survey of its use in modern Lutheran interpretations of Galatians 3:28.

15. See Jeremias, Jerusalem in the Time of Jesus, 270–302, 317–344, for a helpful discussion of the background to this change.

16. Many contemporary people recoil at the idea that Paul could have recommended to Christian masters and slaves that they relate to one another as brothers rather than that the master dissolve the relationship. Some of that recoiling comes from a deeply ingrained commitment to abolish the institution of slavery. Much of it, however, comes from a failure to understand how different the institution of slavery could be in different times and places. Uncle Tom’s Cabin and other expressions of modern slavery do not well represent all forms of slavery. The slavery of an Israelite to an Israelite master, as described in the Pentateuch (Ex 21:2–11; Dt 14:12–18), was more like being an indentured servant than like being a full slave. Moreover, in Hellenistic kingdoms, in fact in many ancient kingdoms, the highest ministers were slaves of the king. Slaves were not only menial servants or workers, they were also stewards, set over the estate of the master. Such stewards could be both powerful and respected. In many societies, slaves had legal protection and could expect care from their master. In short, Paul might well have reacted to Uncle Tom’s Cabin the same way nineteenth-century Americans did and still not have seen it as representative of the slavery of his day.

17. The more likely interpretation of this passage would seem to me to be that Paul is urging Philemon to receive his runaway slave back as a brother, without implying that he free him. The view that Paul is implying manumission, however, is often maintained and the issue is complex.

18. On agapē as distinctively Christian, see A. Nygren, Agapē and Eros, 3 vols. (London: SPCK, 1932, 1938, 1939). Crouch, 11n70, lists several other commentators who assume this position. Among those who object to such a view are Crouch, 111, and M. Barth, Ephesians 4–6, 715–720.

19. For a valuable treatment of Galatians 3:28, which offers some insightful analysis and arrives at this same conclusion about the effects of the passage on social roles, see Hans Cavallin, “Demythologising the Liberal Illusion,” in Why Not? (Apelford: Marcham Books, 1976), 81–94.

20. For instance Stendahl, The Bible and the Role of Women, 34. On the other hand, in Paul among Jews and Gentiles, 1–7, he reverses his approach.

21. See, for instance, W. D. Davies, Paul and Rabbinic Judaism (London: SPCK, 1948), 68–76, 301; W. F. Albright and C. S. Mann, Matthew, The Anchor Bible, vol. 26 (New York: Doubleday, 1971), ix; as well as Stendahl, Paul among Jews and Gentiles, 129–133. See also W. L. Knox, St. Paul and the Church of Jerusalem (Cambridge: Cambridge University Press, 1939), 122; C. H. Dodd, “The Mind of Paul: Change and Development,” The Bulletin of the John Rylands Library 18, no. 1 (January 1934): 41.

22. Crouch, 125–126, and Stendahl, The Bible and the Role of Women, 33, justify this position fully.

23. Regarding the difference between Paul’s perception of the men-women differences and those of slave-free, see also R. C. Sproul, “Controversy at Culture Gap,” Eternity 27 (May 1976): 15, and Thomas Hopko, “On the Male Character of the Christian Priesthood,” St. Vladimir’s Theological Quarterly 19, no. 3 (1975): 151.

24. This observation about Galatians 3:28 seems to me totally destructive of the basic argumentation of Jewett’s book. His attempt to argue for the fundamentality of the man-woman relationship on the basis of Genesis 1 is contradicted by the statement of Galatians 3:28 which urges going back beyond the male and female differentiation to the original unity of man. The attempt to abolish role differences and simultaneously exalt the sexual relationship finds no support in the scriptural approach from Genesis to Revelation.

25. Mary Daly, The Church and the Second Sex (New York: Harper & Row, 1968), 41–42.

26. Boucher, 57. Emphasis in the original.

27. Scanzoni/​Hardesty, 110.

Chapter 7

The Community  ▷  Key Texts (1 Corinthians 11:2–16; 14:33–36)

1. For a fuller justification of this view, see C. K. Barrett, A Commentary on the First Epistle to the Corinthians (London: Adam and Charles Black, 1968), 247; and F. F. Bruce, I and II Corinthians (London: Oliphants, 1971), 102; among others. However, there is Walker’s view, which would begin an interpolation at this point (Walker, “Corinthians 11:2–16 and Paul’s Views Regarding Women,” Journal of Biblical Literature 94, no. 1 [March 1975]: 97ff.). There is no manuscript evidence, however, for any interpolation and there is an alternate explanation (the one given here) that is adequate. Walker’s article is one of the more speculative approaches to dealing with difficulties in a scriptural passage that can be found.

2. For a substantiation of this view, see J. A. Fitzmyer, “A Feature of Qumran Angelology and the Angels of Cor XI. 10,” New Testament Studies 4, no. 1 (October 1957): 48–58, in which Fitzmyer cites two passages from Qumran texts that demonstrate the presence of angels in worship assemblies. See also Annie Jaubert, “Le Voile des femmes,” New Testament Studies 18, no. 4 (July 1972): 427–428. Fritz Zerbst, in The Office of Women in the Church, trans. A. G. Merkens (St. Louis: Concordia, 1955), 42–43, gives a number of other possible interpretations which include understanding the “angels” in the passage to be elders of the church, prophets, husbands, and young people, pagan or Jewish spies, or evil spirits (in view of Gn 6).

3. The opinions of scholars differ greatly as to the customs of veiling in the ancient world. Those pertaining to Jewish women are fairly clear. See especially Jeremias, 359–360, and Strack/​Billerbeck, 3:423–437, for good treatments of this. Also see Jaubert, 424; Orr and Walther in I Corinthians (New York: Doubleday, 1976), 260; C. K. Barrett, 247ff.; and J. Duncan M. Derrett, “Religious Hair,” Studies in the New Testament, vol. 1 (Leiden: Brill, 1977), 170–174. There is some general agreement that veiling among the Greeks was primarily an Eastern custom, being less and less common as one headed West. See Oepke, TDNT, 3:561–563. Jaubert says that the Greeks would have considered it generally more decent for a woman to wear a veil in public, but that it is not possible to know what the local Corinthian custom was. See also Zerbst, 36–37.

Among popular writers who suggest that unveiled women in Corinth would be taken as prostitutes are D. Pape, In Search of God’s Ideal Woman (Downer’s Grove: InterVarsity Press, 1975), 122 (where it is mentioned as one option among several possible ones); R. Kress, 87; and Mary Daly, 38, who, with Sister Albertus Magnus McGrath, OP (35–36) also sees the instructions on veiling as a form of “missionary adaptation.” The opinion is not normally advanced by scholars.

For the most part, our sources on Jewish custom are rabbinic and are later than Cor. We have no clear sources in the area for diaspora Judaism in the time of Jesus, or for non-rabbinic custom except as we can deduce it from the later rabbinic sources.

4. For discussions of the origin of the yarmulke and prayer shawl, see Strack/​Billerbeck, 3:423–437; also Barrett, 250ff.; C. T. Craig, Interpreter’s Bible, vol. 10 (New York: Abingdon, 1953), 126. Possibly the wearing of the yarmulke was designed as an anti-Christian practice on the part of the Jews. See “Head, Covering of,” Encyclopedia Judaica, vol. 8 (Jerusalem: Keter Publishing House, 1971), 5.

5. See for example, Anton Baumstark, Liturgie comparée: principes et Méthodes pour l’étude historique des liturgies chrétiennes (Paris: Éditions de Chevetogne, 1953), 30ff.

6. For a discussion of the tallis (or tallit) in Judaism, see “Tallit” in The Jewish Encyclopedia, vol. 11 (New York: Funk and Wagnalls, 1905), 676–678.

7. The evidence for the Jewish practice comes mainly from Palestinian sources. Hence, Paul and the early Christians may have adopted the custom of Jews in the Greco-Roman world. There is a passage in Tertullian (De Corona 4; CCL 2:1043–1044) which indicates that Jewish women in North Africa wore veils all the time in public. If this were a widespread custom, diaspora Judaism would not present the kind of parallel suggested.

8. On the honor involved in a woman’s wearing a veil, see Feuillet, “La dignité et le rôle de la femme d’après quelque textes pauliniens,” 160; and W. Ramsey, 202–203. Ramsey writes:

In Oriental lands the veil is the power and the honour and dignity of the woman. With the veil on her head she can go anywhere in security and profound respect. . . . But without the veil the woman is a thing of nought, whom anyone may insult. . . . A woman’s authority and dignity vanish along with the all-covering veil that she discards.

9. Zerbst’s observations concerning cultural expressions are worthy of note:

The considerations and explanations advanced by Paul in the Cor 11 passage appear strange to us of modern times not only because we are unable to determine with finality the custom to which Paul refers, but also because the people of Paul’s day felt much more keenly than do people of our day that the outward demeanor of a person is an expression of his inner life, specifically his religious convictions and moral attitude. The arguments of Paul will be rightly understood and appreciated only when the attempts of Corinthian women to lay aside the headcloth are recognized as an attack upon the structure of marriage, and, as such, an attack in general upon the relations between man and woman as established in creation. (40)

Some view the concern in the passage as “legalism,” and therefore certainly not Pauline (Walker, 106). Such a view is an arbitrary interpretation of Paul’s concerns. Paul chooses where to make rulings (e.g., Cor 5; 7; 14) and where not to make them, depending upon his approach and the importance he attaches to a particular practice.

10. On the term physis, see Koester, TDNT, 9:246–271. Zerbst, 43ff., discusses various interpretations of Paul’s use of physis in Corinthians 11, which include “the objective order of nature,” “a natural feeling,” a Stoic usage of the term. Zerbst comments that Paul “sees behind physis the Creator,” who so made nature that it is able to teach such lessons as the one he puts forth in verses 14ff. See also Barrett, 256–257.

11. One example of such a scornful approach is in R. C. Devor, “When We’re ‘Blindsided’ by the Gospel,” Encounter 35 (Autumn 1974): 376, as he says of verse 14:

This is not only laughable but questionable. Convention may have dictated short haired men and long haired women. It may have been a part of Paul’s religious tra­dition. But it can hardly be claimed that this is the way “nature” ordered it . . . as we can see everywhere today, long haired men abound. I would hesitate to suggest to most of them that their appearance is degrading.

Not only does Devor assume one of the possible interpretations of “nature,” but he also assumes a kind of cultural relativity that many would give reasons for disagreeing with. The question of how to decide whether something is natural will be discussed further in Chapters Sixteen and Seventeen.

12. For further development of the significance of the concept of tradition, see Büchsel, TDNT, 2:169–173; also Rengstorf, TDNT, 2:152–159. See also Y. Congar, Tradition and Traditions (London: Burns and Oates, 1966), 8–13; Zerbst, 31–32; and F. F. Bruce, Tradition Old and New (Grand Rapids: Zondervan, 1970), 19ff.

13. Examples of those who see Paul as merely giving his own personal and hence non-authoritative opinion are Ford, “Biblical Material Relevant to the Ordination of Women,” Journal of Ecumenical Studies 10, no. 4 (Fall 1973): 679; J. Short, in The Interpreter’s Bible, 10:128–129; and McGrath, 41.

14. Among those proposing the first view are F. F. Bruce, 105; L. Morris, 153; C. T. Craig, Inter­preter’s Bible, 127; and Kugelman, JBC, 210. Among those recommending the second view are A. Feuillet, “L’homme ‘gloire de Dieu’ et femme ‘gloire de l’homme’ (I Cor XI,7b),” Revue Biblique 81, no. 2 (April 1974): 161–182; and A. Jaubert, 418–430. In favor of the view that “glory” here means “reflection” is the fact that the phrase one would normally expect would be “image and likeness.” The context points to the fact, moreover, that “glory” should somehow express the idea that woman is from man. On the other hand, someone’s glory is more commonly something that gives him glory. The parallels, moreover, point in this direction. It would not be unreasonable to see man, the obedient son, as someone who brings glory to God. For a collection and discussion of the later rabbinic parallels, see Strack/​Billerbeck, 3:611.

15. In an attempt to deal with this passage, some of the Fathers and some later Christian teachers following them stated that woman was in the image of God in a derivative way, not directly, because she was created from man. For instance, Cyril of Alexandria, who stated that “woman, too, is indeed in God’s image and likeness, but as by means of the man, so that in a way she is distinguished a little in reference to nature” (PG 74:881). However, even being in the image of God derivatively rather than directly does not seem to change the nature of the image of God in her.

The Fathers resolved the issue of whether woman was in the image of God in a variety of ways, which generally depended upon their interpretation of the word “image.” Ambrose (PL 16:307ff.), Augustine (PL 34:452f.), Basil (PG 31:240f.), Gregory of Nazianzus (PG 36:289–292), Gregory of Nyssa (PG 44:181), Origen (GCS 10:252), and many others, see “image” as referring in some way or other to one’s essential nature and therefore hold that woman as well as man is in God’s image. On the other hand, John Chrysostom (PG 53:73), and others of the Antiochene school such as Diodore of Tarsus (PG 33:1546f.) understand “image” to be a functional term referring to man’s ruling position. They state that woman is not in God’s image according to this functional sense. Yet, on the level of essential nature, Fathers such as Chrysostom would appear to agree with the others cited above (e.g., PG 53:73). In short, the passage in Corinthians 11 does not rule out woman’s being in the image of God, and both Genesis 1 and Galatians 3:28 would call for her being in the image of God.

16. Among those taking such a position are Stendahl, The Bible and the Role of Women, 31–32, 35; Scanzoni/​Hardesty, 66; and R. Scroggs, “Paul and the Eschatological Woman,” Journal of the American Academy of Religion 40, no. 3 (1 September 1972): 300–302. This view is relatively recent and seems to ignore the basic reference to a man’s relationship to his mother in the text.

17. An example of the first approach can be found in Russell Prohl, Woman in the Church: A Restudy of Woman’s Place in Building the Kingdom (Grand Rapids: Eerdmans, 1957), 24ff. An example of the second approach would be that of H. Schlier, Der Brief an die Epheser (Düsseldorf: Patmos-Verlag, 1957), 253–254. For an example of the approach which combines the first two, see Zerbst, 33–34, where he states:

These observations suggest the thought that the Apostle had husbands and wives in mind when he wrote this passage. However, Paul in this passage at the same time speaks also generally of man and woman. In order to understand Paul we must bear in mind that the relationship between the sexes always has its center in marriage. In all his pronouncements concerning the position of woman, Paul’s central concern is for the preservation and protection of marriage. . . . It is a fundamental consideration for him that the preservation of marriage always depends also upon the deportment of the unmarried. . . . The demeanor of the unmarried woman, for instance, is not a matter of indifference for the preservation of marriage. One may perhaps say, therefore, that every word concerning marriage is at the same time a word concerning the relationships between men and women in general and, vice versa, that every declaration concerning the relationship between the sexes in general is decisive also for marriage. This fact explains the characteristic indefiniteness of Cor 11, which in one place speaks of men and women in general and in another place of married people in particular.

18. Among those stating that Paul makes no sense, or that he presents a string of poor arguments, realizes their weakness, and appeals to authority, are R. C. Devor, “When We’re ‘Blindsided’ by the Gospel,” 360–381; Scroggs, “Paul and the Eschatological Woman,” 297; and Walker, 97.

19. For a discussion of the reasoning behind the interpolation view, see Zerbst, 45; A. Feuillet, “La dignité et le rôle de la femme d’après quelques textes pauliniens,” 162ff.; and M. E. Thrall, The Ordination of Women to the Priesthood (London: SCM Press, 1958), 77–79. Their arguments seem adequate to refute the idea.

20. On the question of the relationship between Corinthians 11 and Corinthians 14, the interpolation view can be found in Scroggs, 284; Conzelmann, 246; among others. The view that Corinthians 14 rules out the praying and prophesying spoken of in Corinthians 11 is held by Crouch, 133ff.; Ryrie, 74–81; and J. Wahl, The Exclusion of Women from Holy Orders, Studies in Sacred Theology (Second Series), no. 110 (Washington: Catholic University of America Press, 1959), 15–18; among others. The suggestion that these passages refer to different situations is made by R. Prohl, 34–35. Among the many who see two different types of speaking referred to are Daniélou, 10–11; Feuillet, 166–167; Stendahl, The Bible and the Role of Women, 30; Zerbst, 50; L. Morris, 201–202.

21. Examples of the view that disorderly speech is at issue can be found in Pape, 138. Scanzoni/​Hardesty, 68–69, suggest a particularly noisy women’s section. Among the many who envision here an instructional situation are Daniélou, 10–11; Feuillet, “La dignité . . .”, 167; Bruce, 135–136; and Morris, 201–202. The discussion on the difference between lalein and legein and the significance of Paul’s choice of the former seem inconclusive. They range from seeing lalein as a term for preaching and teaching (Daniélou, 10–11; F. Refoulé, “Le problème des ‘femmes-prêtres’ en Suède,” Lumière et Vie 43 [1959]: 80), to “disorderly chatter” and “babbling” (Pape, 138–139), to “critical discussion of passages from the prophets,” and “questions asked for the purpose of achieving deeper comprehension or elucidation of things heard” (cited by Zerbst, 46).

22. This explanation would be strengthened by anthropological and historical parallels. This is exactly the sort of approach that would be taken by many societies. See the discussion in Chapter Seventeen.

23. See Strack/​Billerbeck, 3:467–468, for a consideration of the parallels.

24. Among those suggesting that Genesis 3:16 is referred to are Barrett, 330; L. Morris, 201; J. O’Rourke, in A New Catholic Commentary on Holy Scripture (London: Thomas Nelson, 1969), 1158. Others such as F. F. Bruce, 135–136, and A. Feuillet, 165, suggest the Genesis 2 creation narrative, while Zerbst, 47, cites the suggestion of a reference to the wives of the patriarchs. Yet if he meant to indicate the Pentateuch, Paul would not likely have said “even the law,” because of the respect with which he spoke of the scriptures. The suggestion that some form of oral tradition stands behind this reference is made by Strack/​Billerbeck, 3:468, and Crouch, 138–139, who quotes Josephus, Contra Apionem 2.201, as a likely parallel: “The Woman, says the Law, is in all things interior to the man. Let her accordingly be submissive, not for her humiliation, but that she may be directed; for the authority has been given by God to the man.”

Chapter 8

The Community  ▷  Key Texts (1 Timothy 2:8–15)

1. Among those who suggest that Timothy reads as one of the earliest church orders, see M. Dibelius and H. Conzelmann, The Pastoral Epistles (Philadelphia: Fortress Press, 1972), 5–6, where it is compared with the Didache, another early church order.

2. A number of church orders are cited in Chapter Five, footnotes pp. 122123. These early church documents give instructions concerning the order of worship, relationships, and other important elements of church life.

3. Selwyn’s discussion in The First Epistle of Peter (432–435) argues well for this view of the two passages.

4. For a helpful and fuller discussion of the basic concern in this instruction, see Zerbst, 51–52. See also the discussion of this passage and the citations made in Chapter Four, pp. 8895.

5. Among writers who do not take such adornment admonitions seriously are Daly, 40; van der Meer, 24; McGrath, 37. Among the many Fathers who made this admonition were Clement of Alexandria, Pédagogue 2.10 (Sources Chrétiennes 108:195ff.); John Chrysostom, Homily 8 on Timothy (PG 62:549–550); and Augustine, Sermons 32 (PL 38:196ff.).

6. The majority of commentators read authentein in the first meaning given, as, for instance, Zerbst, 53 (who gives an extensive citation of others holding this interpretation); J. N. D. Kelly, A Commentary on the Pastoral Epistles (London: A. & C. Black, 1963), 68; C. Spicq, Les Épîtres pastorales (Paris: Garabalda, 1947), 70. Examples of the second meaning can be mostly found in popular feminist writers like James L. Beall, The Ministry of Women (Detroit: Bethesda Missionary Temple, n.d.), 21–25; and Scanzoni/​Hardesty, 71. The third meaning is found in Pape, 150. There is some discussion as to the precise etymology of the term authentein which appears to have been a relatively rare verb whose meaning changed over time. In its earlier usage, the verb referred to those who killed others or themselves with their own hands. Josephine Ford, in “Biblical Material Relevant to the Ordination of Women,” Journal of Ecumenical Studies 10, no. 4 (Fall 1973): 683, makes the very unusual and unsubstantiated suggestion that authentein should be translated “supreme authority,” referring specifically to the ultimate authority of a bishop to “formulate doctrine.” She distinguishes between this “supreme authority” of the bishop and the teaching authority of the elders, which, she holds, could be exercised by a woman.

7. There is a passage in the Didascalia Apostolorum 3.6.1–2 (Funk, 190.8–17), which prohibits widows from explaining Christian doctrines to pagans because they were not educated enough to explain the doctrines in a way that gained the respect of pagans. The Didascalia passage presents a contrast to the passage in Timothy 2, a contrast probably explainable by the difference in social climate between cosmopolitan cities in first-century Asia Minor and in the towns in third-century Syria that the Didascalia was probably written for and by an attempt to deal with a different situation.

8. An illustration of those who see Paul as stating his own personal opinion can be found in J. M. Ford, “Biblical Material . . . ,” 632.

9. The view that there was a high degree of “feminism” in the contemporary Roman Empire and especially in Asia Minor is argued for in L. Carle, “La femme et les ministères pastoraux d’après la tradition,” Nova et Vetera 47, no. 4 (1972): 284–285; J. Dauvilliers, Les temps apostoliques (Paris: Sirey, 1970), 417–424; J. Carcopino, La Vie quotidienne à Rome à l’Apogèe de l’Empire (Paris: Hachette, 1939), 104–124; J. Broudéhoux, Mariage et famille chez Clément d’Alexandrie (Paris: Beauchesne et ses fils, 1970), 14–142.

10. Among the patristic commentators who understand Timothy 2 in this way, often with an explicit reference, are Origen (GCS 33:273.9–19), Chrysostom (PG 62:543ff.), Theodore of Mopsuestia (PG 66:938), Theodoret of Cyrus (PG 82:310), John Damascene (PG 95:1005), Epiphanius (GCS 31:241.18–244.11), Ambrosiaster (PL 17:468), and Jerome (PL 30:878).

11. Some understand Eve to be given the blame in Sirach 25:24 (for example, Jewett, 117; McGrath, 15–16). This view of Sirach is an overinterpretation of the passage, because it rests upon a misunderstanding of its literary form (it is not a theological statement, but a humorous lament).

12. Among those stating such a view are A. T. Hanson, Studies in the Pastoral Epistles (London: SPCK, 1968), 76–77; R. Kress, 94; R. Wahlberg, “Is the New Testament Chauvinist? Paul: Yes!; Jesus: No!,” New Catholic World, May–June 1975, 103. The position taken in the text is simply that the two approaches are not incompatible, but are, in fact, complementary in what they assert. That still leaves room for the view that the two approaches are different enough to point toward different authorship. Such a discussion goes beyond the scope of this book.

13. For a discussion of Paul’s founding of women’s subordination, see Chapter Four, pp. 8488. Among those who appear to interpret Timothy 2:14 as founded upon the “curses” are Ida Ramig, Exclusion of Women from the Priesthood: Divine Law or Sex Discrimination? (Metuchen: Scarecrow Press, 1976), 111–116; and McGrath, 36–37. Zerbst, 54–56, provides a carefully argued view of the contrary, along with a useful survey.

14. The term “deceived” could mean “seduced” here. There was a Jewish tradition that Eve was seduced by the serpent, and Paul possibly refers to that tradition in Cor 11:3. Hanson, 65–77, defends the view that the Jewish tradition lies behind both passages. Whether or not this is the correct interpretation of Timothy 2:14 does not affect the discussion here, since Timothy 2:14 is concerned with the fact that Eve was deceived as a basis for the rule about teaching. The interpretation of the deception as seduction would perhaps strengthen the point, since false teachers lead Christians into an adulterous relationship (cf. Cor 11:2–4) by making them disloyal to Christ. A seduced teacher leads to a seduced people. This line of thought also would point to the husband’s and father’s role as the protector of the chastity of their women (cf. Sir 42:9–11).

15. Hanson, 66ff., cites a number of possible Jewish parallels to this notion, including the Letter to Aristeas and Philo’s Questions on Genesis 1.33. See further Strack/​Billerbeck, 3:646.

16. For a discussion of these issues from a social scientific perspective, see Chapter Sixteen, pp. 390391.

17. The prominence of women in the heretical sects of the early church is noted at times by the Fathers; as, for instance, Jerome (PL 22:1152f.). Zerbst analyzes this fact on 83–84. The tendency for women to cluster in higher proportions than men around new spiritual movements is illustrated by the contemporary charismatic renewal.

18. Although scholarly commentators rarely use this as the preferred interpretation, S. Jebb “A Suggested Interpretation of Tm 2:15,” Expository Times 81, no. 7 (April 1970): 221–222; and Dibelius-Conzelmann, 47f.; could be seen as holding a similar position. It is commonly advanced in feminist writing.

19. Exponents of this view include Kelly, 69, and Spicq, 72f.

20. Among those who take this position are C. K. Barrett, The Pastoral Epistles (Oxford: Clarendon, 1963), 56f.; and E. F. Scott, The Pastoral Epistles (London: Hodder & Stoughton, 1936), 28.

21. Among those who recommend this approach is A. D. B. Spencer, “Eve at Ephesus (Should Women Be Ordained as Pastors According to the First Letter to Timothy 2:11–15?),” Journal of the Evangelical Theological Society 17 (1974): 215–222, who lists it as a possibility among others.

22. Among the Fathers, the position of woman in the resurrection and its correspondence with the position of woman in the Fall is a favorite theme. Among the many who comment upon it are Origen (PG 13:1819), Cyril of Alexandria (PG 72:941), Hippolytus (GCS 1/1:354f.), Ambrose (PL 15:1843ff.), Augustine (PL 38:1108), Gregory the Great (PL 76:1194).

23. For a development of this point, see R. Laurentin, Structure et théologie de Luc 1–11 (Paris: Garabalda, 1957), 176–178.

24. For instance, Justin (PG 6:710–711): “He is born of the Virgin, in order that the disobedience caused by the serpent might be destroyed in the same manner in which it had originated. For Eve, an undefiled virgin, conceived the word of the serpent and brought forth disobedience and death. But the Virgin Mary, filled with faith and joy, when the angel Gabriel announced to her the good news that the Spirit of the Lord would come upon her and the power of the Most High overshadow her, and therefore the Holy One born of her would be the Son of God, answered: Be it done unto me according to your word.” In a similar vein see Origen (PG 13:1819), Irenaeus (Sources Chrétiennes 34:380ff.), Ambrose (PL 16:327–329), and Augustine (PL 40:186). Thrall suggests, probably mistakenly, that Paul is speaking of Mary in this way in Corinthians 11:12; i.e., that, having mentioned the creation of the woman from the First Adam, he speaks of the birth of Christ, the Second Adam, from a human woman.

Chapter 9

Summary  ▷  The New Testament Teaching as a Whole

No notes

Note on Method  ▷  Exegesis

1. This aspect is what B. Lonergan calls “understanding the author” in Method in Theology (London: Darton, Longman & Todd, 1972), 160–161. In the sketch given in note 2 following of the exegetical task, this phrase primarily refers to what is involved in “understanding and restating the text.”

2. The exegetical task has the following main components:

  1. preliminary tasks
    1. study of the text:
      • textual criticism
      • linguistic study (vocabulary, syntax, etc.)
      • literary study of the text (structure, literary form, etc.)
    2. study of the situation from which the text comes:
      • study of the background (economic, social, political, intellectual, religious, theological, ecclesiastical; Old Testament, intertestamental, rabbinic, Greco-Roman, early Fathers, etc.)
      • situating the text in the flow of history
      • situating the text in the author’s thought and development (when possible)
  2. understanding and restating the text:
    1. understanding the subject being discussed in the text (content and referent)
    2. understanding the author’s intent
    3. translating it to a new conceptual system or language
    4. relating it to our situation
  3. judging the likelihood of our exegesis (possible, probable, certain)

Evaluation of what is said in the text, indicating how it can or should be applied, and recommending how it should be approached are all outside the exegetical task, according to the definition used here.

The above schematization of the exegetical task is purely analytic. Concretely speaking, relating the text to our situation might go on as one is involved in the linguistic study of the text. All the elements can happen as simultaneous aspects of the one process.

3. In theory, modern discussions about hermeneutics should be concerned with this process, because of their focus on relating the horizon of the author to the horizon of the modern reader and being able to show the meaning of the text within the context of the reader’s actual experience. For the most part, the hermeneutical question is more accurately related to questions of applicability and hence is treated in Chapter Twenty. In fact, however, as hermeneutical theory correctly observes, “prior understandings,” including those concerning application, affect exegesis. The discussions connected with Bultmann, Fuchs, Ebeling, and others raise the hermeneutical question. However, their discussions seem to produce little useful material for the discussion of the roles of men and women. This is perhaps another instance of what Walter Wink in The Bible in Human Transformation (Philadelphia: Fortress, 1973), 1, would consider the inability of modern exegetical study to fulfill its purpose of relating the scripture to the lives of modern Christians, or what Peter Stuhlmacher in Historical Criticism and Theological Interpretation of Scripture (Philadelphia: Fortress, 1977), 65, describes as the way “historical criticism is the agent of a repeated and growing rupture of vital contact between biblical tradition and our own time.”

One reason why most discussions proceeding from considerations of “the hermeneutical question” do not produce much for our area is possibly the fact that their concern is more with interpreting the kerygmatic or doctrinal parts of scripture, not scriptural teaching on Christian life. The latter area presents a different problematic. A more significant reason, however, in the current context is the general lack of attention given in such hermeneutical discussions to concrete questions of intercultural comparison. Perhaps if the discussions of hermeneutical theory had originated more from the influence of anthropological studies on scripture scholars and less from the influence of philosophical theories such as those of Gadamer and Ricoeur, the approach and results would have been different.

4. Examples of this sort of failure to understand the significance of social roles can be found throughout the book by Leipoldt, a book that seems to have influenced much subsequent writing on the social background of the scriptural texts on men’s and women’s roles. Derrett’s Jesus’s Audience is an example of a work which displays a recognition of such important social aspects.

5. The characteristic “liberationist” approach to scripture can also be found in Latin American Liberation Theology, some American Black Theology, European Political Theology as well as Feminist Theology. What is characteristic of each of these is that they subject the scriptural interpretation to an ideal of political, economic, and/or sexual liberation. (More will be said about this in Chapter Fifteen.) Many liberationist theologians ground their position in the revisionist Marxist sociology of knowledge of Jürgen Habermas and others of the Frankfurt School. They would agree with Bonino when he writes: “. . . this theology, with its insistence on praxis and the sociopolitical context as privileged theological data, gives the historical circumstances a determinative weight in theology” (Jose Miguel Bonino, Doing Theology in a Revolutionary Situation [Philadelphia: Fortress Press, 1975], 72). Scripture is, for them, a radically historical document to be interpreted according to a neo-Marxist hermeneutic. See also Jürgen Moltmann, “Toward a Political Hermeneutic of the Gospel,” Union Seminary Quarterly Review 23, no. 4 (Summer 1968): 303–323; Juan Luis Segundo, The Liberation of Theology (New York: Orbis Books, 1976); Elizabeth Schüssler Fiorenza, “Feminist Theology as a Critical Theology of Liberation,” in Woman: New Dimensions, ed. Walter J. Burghardt (New York: Paulist, 1977), 29–50; F. Herzog, “Liberation Hermeneutics as Ideology Critique?” Interpretation 28, no. 4 (October 1974): 387–403.

6. See Chapter One, footnote on p. 24.

7. See Chapter One, footnote on pp. 2626.

8. See Chapter One, footnote on p. 26.

9. See Chapter One, footnote on p. 25.

10. This opinion is so unreasonable that it was not treated in Chapter One. It can be found in Trible, “Eve and Adam: Genesis 2–3 Re-read,” 251–258, and in Adams, 20ff.

11. See Chapter One, footnote on p. 19.

12. See Chapter Ten, pp. 249302

13. See note 17 to Chapter Ten, p. 726.

14. See Chapter Five, pp. 120121.

15. See Chapter Five, p. 132.

16. See Chapter Five, pp. 133133.

17. See Chapter Five.

18. See Chapter Five.

19. See Chapter Five.

20. See Chapters Four and Seven.

21. See Chapter Four.

22. See Chapter Four.

23. See Chapter Four.

24. See Chapter Seven.

25. See Chapter Seven.

26. Boucher, 57–58.

27. Cited in Stendahl, The Bible and the Role of Women, 8. Mascall, in Women Priests? (London: Christian Literature Association, 1972), gives an excellent description of the process in the Church of England’s study commissions on the ordination of women. The change in approach and the reasons for the change are enlightening.

Chapter 10

The New Testament Approach  ▷  Jesus and Paul

1. The most influential exponent of the cultural conflict view appears to be Leipoldt, whose book is built around this thesis.

2. “Canonized rabbinism” is a position held by, among others, van der Meer, 39–45; Ida Ramig, Exclusion of Women from the Priesthood, 111–116; Maertens, 166, 196; and V. Mollenkott, Women, Men and the Bible (Nashville: Abingdon, 1977), 90–106.

3. Among those who propose a conformity to culture view are Crouch, 152ff.; Lohse, Colossians and Philemon (Philadelphia: Fortress Press, 1971), 156ff.; and Conzelmann, First Corinthians (Philadelphia: Fortress, 1975), 184ff.; who take this position in their studies of the Haustafeln. It is recommended by a variety of commentators on the Corinthians 11 passage, and is a favorite among the popular feminist writers.

4. Those who propose a distinctive approach of some sort include Zerbst, 49; Refoulé, 70, 83ff.; Morris, 152; M. Barth, 618. Many authors cannot easily be classified as having an overall approach.

5. See, for instance, Otwell, 132–151; Leipoldt, 72; Oepke, 781; Vos, 46–50. See Vos in particular for a helpful explanation of the man-woman relationship in the Old Testament.

6. Possibly for many that role was due primarily to prophetic gifts, as Deborah’s and Huldah’s seem to have been. However, whether later Judaism would have changed the way women exercised their prophetic gifts is unclear, since by the intertestamental period the prophet’s role was restricted to the Essenes.

7. On this subject, see Jeremias, Jerusalem in the Time of Jesus, 370f.; Strack/​Billerbeck, 4:1226; Leipoldt, 79–116; Derrett, Jesus’s Audience, 31ff.; Oepke, 781ff.

8. Kid. 49b, in The Babylonian Talmud, 34 vols., ed. I. Epstein (London: Soncino Press, 1936–1952).

9. Kid. 1.7.

10. Yeb. 62b.

11. Ber. 16a.

12. See Leipoldt, 119–146, for a vigorous presentation of the difference.

13. The notion of Jesus as a revolutionary in his approach to women is often found in feminist writings (for instance, McGrath, 17–27, and Jewett, 94–103). It can also be found in a wide range of other commentators (as, for example, C. C. Ryrie, 26–32). The idea that Jesus departed little if at all from contemporary Jewish customs is clearly stated by K. Stendahl, The Bible and the Role of Women, 26, where he writes:

It would probably be difficult to find any element in the gospels which transcends the essentially Palestinian Jewish frame of ideas. Jesus’ sayings touching on the relationship between men and women all fall within this fundamental view. The contrast between the sayings from the rabbinic schools as recorded in the Talmud and the more nonprofessional and popular character of Jesus’ ministry explains full well the characteristic role women play in his activity and the characteristic place of domestic duties in the imagery of his parables. The lecture halls and court rooms of the rabbis give a different setting from the travels of the eschatological preacher Jesus.

The modified view of Jesus as new, but not totally revolutionary can be found in the essay by Bishop Albert Descamps of the Pontifical Biblical Commission, “Significance for Us Today of Christ’s Attitude and of the Practice of the Apostles,” in The Order of the Priesthood (Huntington: OSV Source Books, 1978), 66–67.

14. On the variety within Judaism before 70 AD, see Floyd Filson, A New Testament History (London: SCM Press, 1965), 48–57; Davies, Paul and Rabbinic Judaism, xii; Jacob Neusner, The Rabbinic Traditions about the Pharisees before 70 AD, pt. 3 (Leiden: Brill, 1971), 239ff.; Morton Smith, “A Comparison of Early Christian and Early Rabbinic Tradition,” Journal of Biblical Literature 82, no. 2 (June 1963): 171–172. On the am ha-aretz, see Smith; A. Büchler, Der galiläische ῾Am-ha’Ares des zweiten Jahrhunderts (Hildesheim: G. Olms, 1968); and A. Oppenheimer, The ῾Am ha-Aretz, trans. J. H. Levine (Leiden: Brill, 1977). On the break in scribal-rabbinic tradition at 70 AD, see Neusner, The Development of a Legend (Leiden: Brill, 1970), 2–3; The Rabbinic Traditions 1.6. See also Smith, 171–172; Strack/​Billerbeck, 2:547.

15. On the difference between the role of the wealthy Jerusalem women and that of the poorer women in rural areas, see Jeremias, Jerusalem in the Time of Jesus, 362–363.

16. Stendahl, The Bible and the Role of Women, 26, provides an example of interpreting Jesus’ approach to women and to his differences from the rabbis in terms of his role as a popular eschatological preacher.

17. The impression of Jesus as someone who broke radically with the customs and approaches to men-women relations in his Palestinian environment is sometimes increased by exegesis that misses the point of passages by interpreting them as if Jesus’ concerns were that of a first-century proponent of women’s liberation. For instance, the story of Martha and Mary in Luke 10 is sometimes used as an illustration of a woman doing woman’s work (Martha) and a woman taking a man’s place (Mary). Among those taking this position are A. Swidler, Woman in a Man’s Church, 37–38; Mollenkott, 18–19; and J. M. Ford, “Tongues–Leadership–Women,” 194–197. According to such an interpretation, Jesus was commending Mary for not being bound by feminine jobs. This interpretation distorts the story. The concern of the story is to show that the “one thing necessary”—hearing Jesus and learning from him—is more important than “much serving.” Jesus chooses two women to make this point, and his choice is a significant indication of his desire to include women among those he taught. The point is that Jesus is commending a woman for valuing him and his teaching, not for being “liberated” from traditionally feminine tasks. The concern of the passage is not with sexual division of labor in work. Rather, its implication for the relations between man and woman is that in Jesus’ view there is no secondary religious status for women in Israel.

The story in Luke 7 of the woman Jesus forgives is sometimes cited as an instance of radical innovation. It is said that when Jesus let himself be touched by a woman, he broke with all custom in the area of men-women relations. However, none of the people surrounding Jesus seem to notice this aspect of the incident. Their concern is with the fact that the woman is a “sinner” and that Jesus allows himself to associate with her, even to be touched by her. The issue in the passage is not raised by the fact that she was a woman (except insofar as she may have been a prostitute, and getting too close to a prostitute might be a source of temptation for a man). The issue is raised by the fact that Jesus was willing to ignore some Pharisaic teachings to do his work. The focus of this passage is not Jesus’ relations with women, but Jesus’ forgiveness of sins and his willingness to associate with sinners for the sake of their salvation. If anything, this passage bears more directly on Jesus’ relations to the Pharisees than on his relations to women. Among those overly focused on Jesus’ relations with women in this passage are Wahlberg, 100–107, and Kress, 63–64. Being too sensitive to what now are called “women’s issues” can lead to missing the point or seeing the passage anachronistically in a framework alien to the minds of Jesus and the gospel writer.

18. See Leipoldt’s discussion of the rabbinic approach here, 91–92.

19. For a helpful presentation of rabbinic master-disciple customs see Aberbach, “The Relations Between Master and Disciple in the Talmudic Age,” 1–24; for a comprehensive survey of the word in the New Testament see Rengstorf, TDNT, 4:390–461. Rengstorf, consistent with his normal approach, stresses the discontinuity between discipleship among the rabbis and Jesus.

20. One could conjecture that the woman mentioned in Luke 8:1–3 performed a role something like a deaconess and evangelized and even taught women. The passage itself, however, points to something like physical or material service rather than to evangelizing women.

21. On the rabbinic use of the term “daughter of Abraham,” see Strack/​Billerbeck, 2:200.

22. Sr. Margaret Brennan, I. H. M., “Women’s Liberation / Men’s Liberation,” Origins 5, no. 7 (July 17, 1975): 102.

23. A. Swidler, 36. Such views can be found in a number of recent feminist writers, e.g., Wahlberg, 100–107.

24. Some versions of the New Testament translate this text in a significantly different way:

I appeal to Evodia and I appeal to Syntyche to come to agreement with each other, in the Lord; and I ask you, Syzygus, to be truly a “companion” and to help them in this. These women were a help to me when I was fighting to defend the Good News and so, at the same time, were Clement and the others who worked with me. Their names are written in the book of life. (Phil 4:2–3, JB)

This would normally be considered the less likely, but not impossible reading. Such a translation would make Paul somewhat less warm to the women, but still showing a personal concern for them as his co-workers in their time of need.

25. Leipoldt, 182–183, gives a summary of the approaches of the different gospels. See also Brown, “The Role of Women in the Fourth Gospel,” 688–699, for a discussion of the approach to women in the Gospel of John.

26. Although some writers have chosen to interpret Luke 8:1–3 as an indication of women with Jesus functioning as deaconesses, the evidence from the text itself would not appear to support such a reading.

27. Some would hold that Paul, or whoever wrote the pastoral epistles, showed a disrespect for women in the way he spoke in Timothy 2:15 and Timothy 3:6. We have discussed Timothy 2:15 adequately. Timothy 3:6 does not have to be read as being disrespectful to women and probably should not be. The point is not that all women are in the situation that is described, but that those who are in that situation are prey to false teachers. The problem seems to be that false teachers are gaining access to women’s quarters and realizing some success among the weaker women there.

28. The issue of Paul’s authorship of various epistles is likewise not essential here. Corinthians is undisputedly Paul’s, and by itself that is enough to make the point. The Pauline authorship of Colossians also has adequate consensus to be used for a discussion like this.

29. For descriptions of Gentile influences upon Judaism at the time of Jesus, see Martin Hengel, Judaism and Hellenism: Studies in Their Encounter During the Early Hellenistic Period (Philadelphia: Fortress Press, 1974); Davies, Paul and Rabbinic Judaism, 1–6; Tcherikover, Hellenistic Civilization and the Jews (Philadelphia: Jewish Publication Society of America, 1959), 344–377; and W. F. Albright, From the Stone Age to Christianity (New York: Doubleday, 1957), 334–357.

30. See, for instance, Leipoldt, 50–72; Oepke, 776ff.; G. Delling, Paulus’ Stellung zu Frau und Ehe (Stuttgart: Kohlhammer, 1931), 3, 30; Carle, 284f.

Chapter 11

The New Testament Approach  ▷  Setting and Culture

1. The New Testament teaching and approach could be described as Pauline teaching in the broad sense of the word Pauline. The places in which we find the explicit teaching on the roles of men and women and the places which allow us to trace most clearly the patterns of the early Christian life in this area are all in the Pauline sphere of influence. The scripture which contains our main sources for the roles of men and women stem from churches composed of Jews and Gentiles in the area where Paul worked and are texts either written by Paul or written in close association with him (this would include Luke–Acts, and probably Peter, as well as the whole Pauline corpus). There is, of course, much discussion in scholarly writings about how much of the Pauline corpus was actually written by Paul. Few letters have escaped being called into question. For the purposes of this book, there is no need to be involved in these debates. It is enough to note that the pastorals come to us under Pauline authority and most would accept the main lines of approach in the pastorals as Pauline, at least in the sense that they were shaped by Pauline teaching. Moreover, there is some consensus that the teaching in Peter on Christian personal relationships is either influenced by Paul or based upon the same kind of instructional material that Paul’s approach was based on.

2. On this aspect of diaspora Judaism, see Tcherikover, Hellenistic Civilization and the Jews, 296–332; S. Appelbaum, “The Organization of the Jewish Communities in the Diaspora,” in The Jewish People in the First Century, vol. 1, Compendia Rerum Iudaicarum ad Novum Testamentum, vol. 1/1, ed. S. Safrai and M. Stern (Assen: Van Gorcum, 1974), 464–503.

3. For some discussions of the early Christian catechesis, see Crouch, 103–150; M. Barth, 608ff.; P. Carrington, The Primitive Christian Catechism (Cambridge: Cambridge University Press, 1940); Davies, 111–146; C. H. Dodd, The Apostolic Preaching and Its Development (London: Hodder and Stoughton, 1950), 3ff.; and Lohse, 154ff. Daube, 90–105, makes a particularly helpful contribution from the point of view of the concerns of this chapter when he presents evidence for viewing the New Testament ethical instruction as Christian halacha.

4. For helpful treatments of the difference see Crouch, 103–107; W. Lillie, “The Pauline House-tables,” Expository Times 86, no. 6 (March 1975), 179–183.

5. This opinion is presented by Crouch, 166, concerning Colossians. See also Lohse, 156–157; Conzelmann (cited by Lohse, 156). For a penetrating analysis of such an approach, see Sproul, 13–15, 40.

6. This point is noted by Crouch, 155.

7. For helpful material here see Davies, 114ff.; Crouch, 95–97; G. Moore, Judaism in the First Centuries of the Christian Era (Cambridge: Harvard University Press, 1940), 1:247ff.; and The Jewish Encyclopedia, 7:648ff.

8. For a basic presentation of the development of these ideas see the discussion in John Bright, A History of Israel (Philadelphia: The Westminster Press, 1974), 450–453.

9. See, for example, van der Meer, 39–45; Ramig, 111–116.

10. See above, Chapter Six, pp. 142145.

11. Strack/​Billerbeck, 3:610–613.

12. Leipoldt, 147–155, among others, subscribes to this view. However, evidence such as that of Corinthians 9:5, and the role of the woman Grapte in The Shepherd of Hermas may be taken as contradicting such a position. Corinthians 9:5 indicates that women traveled, and possibly worked with, the Twelve, as well as with Paul. Grapte’s role in Hermas (which is normally seen as a Judeo-Christian work) points to a similar conclusion. See Chapter Five on women as missionary workers for a related issue.

13. Among those suggesting a countering of Greek cultural influences are Leipoldt, 172–173; and Carle, 172–173. For the opinion that the problem arose from an interpretation of Paul’s message of freedom, see the discussion in Meeks, 201ff. For the suggestion of tendencies leading toward Gnosticism, see Crouch, 139ff. There is also the distinct possibility that the situation being countered in Corinthians and that being countered in Timothy are two different situations.

14. Some people would hold that Paul’s taking a stand was cultural adaptation in reverse: Paul could not have given women too great a role of leadership in the Christian community because women were so prominent in pagan situations as priestesses and cult prostitutes. If they were leaders, women might have confused their new religion with their old, or they might have been encouraged to resume their old ways. This position rests upon a comparison with the way the Christian church took pains to distinguish itself from paganism in certain areas of life. This view is suggested by Thrall, 74–76, and taken up by J. M. Ford, “Tongues–Leadership–Women: Further Reflections on the Neo-Pentecostal Movement,” 186–197. See also A. Cunningham, “Christian Women in Ecclesial Ministry: The First Six Hundred Years,” in Pro and Con on Ordination of Women (Report and Papers from the Anglican–Roman Catholic Consultation), 66.

It does seem that at times the Christians would avoid a practice simply because it was pagan. On the other hand, it also seems that at times the Christians would take up a pagan practice and change its significance in order to counter pagan influences. However, such concerns both to reject and to take up pagan practices seemed to motivate Christians primarily in the area of worship forms where a symbol, ritual action, or confessional formula might have led new believers to be confused about what God they were worshiping or what kind of worship was fitting. The early Christians did try to guard against syncretism. But the same phenomenon does not seem to have operated in the area of social structure considerations. There is no evidence that the early Christians avoided certain approaches to personal relations and social structure to avoid confusing new Christians about the difference between Christianity and paganism. They did avoid certain approaches to personal relations and social structure that were characteristic of pagans because they thought such approaches were wrong, but not because they thought the practice would cause confusion of religions. However, the major objection to the theory of cultural adaptation in reverse is the lack of evidence for it. It has no more support in the key texts than the theories of cultural adaptation. There is no indication that in these texts New Testament writers were attempting to keep their female converts from relapsing into paganism. Such a view has to be counted as an unlikely guess. Moreover, presumably if Paul guided male converts who were used to male leadership in pagan cults to approach their new religion differently than they had approached their old, he could have done the same for women.

15. The list of writers proposing such theories, and a listing of the various theories proposed, would be lengthy. For a typical sampling see Scanzoni/​Hardesty, 60–72, 88–105; McGrath, 28–44; Kress, 77–106; and Adams, 187–206.

16. For instance, in Gaudium et Spes, in Documents of Vatican II, ed. W. Abbott (New York: The American Press, 1966), 259f.

17. For a good summary of the anthropological definitions of culture, see Louis J. Lutzbetak, The Church and Cultures (South Pasadena: William Carey Library, 1975), 59–72. Alfred Louis Kroeber and Clyde Kluckhohn in Culture: A Critical Review of Concepts and Definitions (Cambridge: Harvard University Press, 1952) give a comprehensive overview and analysis of the attempts to define “culture.”

18. Talcott Parsons draws a similar distinction between the “social system” and the “cultural system.” For Parsons, the term “society” refers to the basic system of human relationships, and the term “culture” refers to the system of symbolic meanings (e.g., language and ceremony) which mediate communication within the relationships. See Talcott Parsons, The Social System (New York: The Free Press, 1951), 5–6, 10–11. The terms have been reworded in this book to deal with the (often confusing) ways in which “the culture question” is phrased. The structuralist distinction between deep and surface structures presents some analogies to this distinction. The distinction has been used earlier in the book, especially in Chapter Seven, pp. 174176

19. For instance, Ramig, 116, and McGrath, 10–16, who describe it as Jewish custom; and Jewett, 129, and Conzelmann (cited in Lohse, 156–157), who regard it as merely a custom of the ancient world.

20. Mary Daly, Beyond God the Father: Toward a Philosophy of Women’s Liberation (Boston: Beacon Press, 1973), 69–70. Daly’s total rejection of Christian belief is even more emphatic in her most recent book, Gyn/Ecology (Boston: Beacon Press, 1978).

21. Daly, The Church and the Second Sex, 42.

22. These two approaches can be found coexisting in such writers as M. Daly, ibid., 40ff.; J. M. Ford, “Tongues–Leadership–Women,” 194–197; and Scanzoni/​Hardesty, 64–72, 202–209. It is, of course, common outside of feminist literature.

23. The question of culture and Christianity has been extensively discussed by Christian thinkers in modern times. They often, however, fail to adequately focus on the issue of two particular opposed cultures, the Christian and the non-Christian, in their interpretation of the New Testament and early patristic writers. Richard Niebuhr in his influential and overall helpful book Christ and Culture, provides an example of this difficulty in chapter 2 (“Christ Against Culture”). He relies throughout the book on the universal sense of “culture” as human life insofar as it is developed by human beings and not simply given in an instinctual or semi-instinctual way by “nature” rather than using “culture” to refer to the way of life of particular cultures (see the discussion in the text, pp. 277279). Hence, he does not clearly enough observe that Christians who were against “culture” were not against culture in general, but against the pagan culture that surrounded them. In fact, those who were most against pagan culture wanted to create a distinctly Christian culture.

The same point could be made by saying that Niebuhr does not approach the issue sociologically or anthropologically (i.e., in terms of a Christian group and culture versus a pagan group or culture). Hence he does not clearly enough treat some of the important aspects of the question.

Because of his basic framework, Niebuhr and others like him miss the great difference between the challenge of culture in a Christendom context (where culture is often approached as an element within a Christian society that has a relationship to religion) and the challenge of culture outside a Christendom situation (where “culture” often presents itself as the culture of an alien, unbelieving group). Niebuhr’s book, therefore, is more valuable as a study of theological thought in a Christendom situation than as a study of the Christian approach in missionary situations—the context of the New Testament writings.

24. See for instance, Stendahl, The Bible and the Role of Women, 38–43. This is further discussed in note 25 to Chapter Twenty, p. 773.

25. A very helpful presentation of Christianity as a culture is that of Lutzbetak, 5–7.

Chapter 12

Christian Tradition  ▷  Husbands and Wives

1. A very positive view of tradition among modern thinkers is often to be found among cultural anthropologists. For a helpful discussion of tradition from the cultural perspective see Lutzbetak, 115–116.

2. For a good summary of tradition in the New Testament, see Congar, Tradition and Traditions, 12–22. See also “Tradition” in New Catholic Encyclopedia, 14:225–228. Recent Catholic thinking tends to emphasize this latter aspect.

3. Examples of the consciousness of the early church that it had received its teaching from the apostles, and of the importance that it placed on that fact, can be found in Clement of Rome (Lightfoot, The Apostolic Fathers, pt. 1, 2:135ff.), Irenaeus (PG 7:1056), and Tertullian (PL 2:32–33).

4. The primary focus here will be on the earliest tradition, that of the patristic era, which extended roughly over the first five or six centuries after the death of the last apostle. Not all early Christian writers are helpful as witnesses to tradition but, in general, early Christian writers of good reputation who appear to be giving accounts of what they understood to be Christian teaching passed on from the apostles can be of assistance in understanding what the scriptures say. There is an important sense in which the earliest tradition is more helpful and authoritative than later tradition, because an earlier writer is more likely to have received and preserved an undistorted version. For this reason, later teachers have given special weight to the writings of the patristic age. It is sometimes pointed out that later tradition is often more clearsighted on particular issues than is earlier tradition, partly as a result of more reflection over the centuries and partly because of having issues clarified in the course of various controversies. Some would hold, therefore, that later teaching is more reliable. Catholics and Orthodox hold that some issues have been solemnly and deliberately decided by the teaching authority of the whole church and that such elements in later tradition are therefore more authoritative and reliable than many elements in earlier tradition. All other things being equal, however, in the case of a “chain” of tradition over the centuries, an earlier authority has more weight simply because it is earlier and there is less likelihood of distortion. The primary focus of these chapters, therefore, is with the earliest tradition, the tradition of the patristic era.

5. For the critical text, see J. B. Lightfoot, The Apostolic Fathers, pt. 1, 2:11.

6. Lightfoot, pt. 1, 2:75–78.

7. Lightfoot, pt. 2, 2:347–350.

8. Lightfoot, pt. 2, 3:328–330.

9. For two helpful treatments of the Alexandrian Fathers and their views on marriage, see Jean-Paul Broudéhoux, Mariage et Famille chez Clément d’Alexandrie (Théologie Historique, vol. 2) (Paris: Beauchesne et ses fils, 1970); and Henri Crouzel, Virginité et Mariage selon Origène (Paris: Desclée de Brouwer, 1962).

10. PG 8:260.

11. PG 8:1271.

12. PG 8:621–622.

13. PG 8:1182.

14. PG 8:1211.

15. Sources Chrétiennes 7:129.

16. For a somewhat balanced view of Tertullian’s writings on marriage, see Igino Giordani, The Social Message of the Early Church Fathers (Boston: St. Paul Editions, 1977), 220–243. Tavard, 56–62, also makes some attempt to offer a balanced view of Tertullian’s views. Many feminist writers (for example, A. Swidler, 13) display no effort to present an accurate overview of Tertullian’s attitudes toward marriage, and toward women in general. Rather, they choose from among his most offensive statements to characterize his position.

17. CSEL 1:393–394.

18. The Didascalia Apostolorum, probably written in Syria in the third century, adds its witness to the third-century church Fathers in teaching the following:

And let a woman also be subject to her husband; because the head of the woman is the man, and the head of a man that walks in the way of justice is Christ. After the Lord Almighty, our God and the Father of the worlds, of the present and of that which is to come, and the Lord of every breath and of all powers, and this living and Holy Spirit—to whom is glory and honour for evermore, Amen—woman, fear your husband and reverence him, and please him alone, and be ready to minister to him . . . (there follows a quote from Prv 31:10–31)

19. The literature describing the views of marriage held by these great Fathers is not extensive in quantity or very helpful on the whole. See, however, the helpful treatment of Chrysostom in Moulard, St. Jean Chrysostome, le défenseur du mariage et l’apôtre de la virginité (Paris, 1923). Of some use in the study of Augustine’s thought is K. E. Børreson’s Subordination et equivalence: Nature et rôle de la femme d’après Augustin et Thomas d’Aquin (Oslo: Universitetsforlaget, 1968).

20. PL 14:357–358.

21. PL 16:1218.

22. PL 16:259.

23. PG 61:292.

24. PG 51:230ff.

25. PG 61:290.

26. PG 62:140–141.

27. PG 62:136–137.

28. John Chrysostom, Homily 20 on Ephesians (PG 62:143).

29. PL 40:373.

30. PL 32:1336.

31. Examples from Protestant sources are numerous. From among the Reformers, see Luther, Lectures on Genesis, in Luther’s Works, vol. 1 (St. Louis: Concordia, 1964), 202–203; and Calvin, Commentary on Genesis, in Commentaires de Jean Calvin sur l’Ancien Testament, vol. 1 (Geneva: Labor et Fides, 1961), 57, 81. See Zerbst, 96–103, for further Protestant examples.

32. Casti Connubii, December 31, 1930, 19, 20.

Chapter 13

Christian Tradition  ▷  Government of the Community

1. For a description of this change, see Clark, Unordained Elders, 44–49.

2. CCL 2:1218.4–1219.7. See also the following quote from De Praescriptione Haereticorum 41.2, written during his Catholic period: “And even the heretical women, how bold and indecorous they are! They dare to teach, to argue, to undertake exorcism, to promise healings, perhaps even to baptize” (CCL 1:221.13–15).

3. GCS 33:273.9–19; see also the quotation from his Fragments for Corinthians 74: “It is not proper to a woman to speak at the Assembly, however admirable or holy what she says may be, merely because it comes from female lips” (cited in Journal of Theological Studies 10, no. 37 [October 1908]: 41–42). The Alexandrian Fathers Clement and Origen seem to have had little to say in general about woman’s official role in the church, as Ryrie (105–111) points out in his survey. Much of their teaching on the service of women, especially the teaching of Clement, focuses on the woman’s position in the home, which would point in the direction of the observations made in Chapter Five that much of the service to others that a woman would perform would be done out of the context of her home. Some further observations on the teaching of the Alexandrian Fathers, especially Clement, can be found in I. Giordani, The Social Message of the Early Church Fathers, 238–242.

4. This can be found in his Letter to Cyprian 75.10 (PL 3:1164) where he states:

Here suddenly there arises a woman who fell into ecstasy and pretended to be a prophetess and behaved as though she were full of the Holy Ghost. . . . This spirit had also duped one of the presbyters, by the name of Rusticus, and still another man, a deacon, so that they were involved along with this woman. . . . But that woman had also been so bold as frequently to do the following: amid an in no way contemptible invocation she affected to sanctify the bread and celebrate the Eucharist and offered the sacrifice to the Lord, not without the mystery of the usual customary words; and she undertook many baptisms with the use of the customary and proper formula of questions, so that she seemed not to deviate at all from the ecclesiastical rule.

5. On the significance of Epiphanius’s witness to tradition regarding the question of women as elders, see Daniélou, The Ministry of Women in the Early Church, 25–28, who says: “Epiphanius here assembles the whole of the official teaching on the question, finding his sanction for the exclusion of women from priestly functions in divine and apostolic authority.” See also R. Gryson, The Ministry of Women in the Early Church (Collegeville: Liturgical Press, 1976), 77–80; and H. van der Meer, Women Priests?, 47–50. Unfortunately, van der Meer, who states that “Epiphanius of Salamis is without doubt by far the most important witness” (47) appears to be primarily interested in trying to find reasons to question the authority of Epiphanius’s witness. His efforts are unconvincing.

6. GCS 37:477.27–478.2.

7. GCS 37:478.16–478.31.

8. Didymus states in The Trinity 3.41.3 (PG 39:988–989):

Regarding female prophets, Scripture speaks of four daughters of Philip, Deborah, Mary, the sister of Aaron, and Mary the Mother of God . . . but there are no books written in their names. As a matter of fact, the Apostle Paul forbade this, in his first letter to Timothy, when he wrote: “I permit no woman to teach,” and again, in the first letter to the Corinthians, “Every woman who prays or prophesies with her head uncovered dishonors her head.” This is to say that women are not permitted to write books impudently, for in this way, a woman insults her head, and “A woman’s head is man; man’s head is Christ.” The reason for imposing silence on women is obvious: the teaching of the first woman, in the beginning, caused a serious wrong to humankind, for so writes the Apostle, “it was not man who was deceived, but woman.”

9. “It is against the order of nature or of law for women to speak in an assembly of men” (Commentary on Cor 14) in PL 30:762.

10. PG 48:633.

11. On the Priesthood 3.9 (PG 48:646):

Divine law has excluded women from the ministry; but they endeavor to force their way into it. Because they can do nothing of themselves, they seek to accomplish everything through others. They have gained such power that they can appoint to the priesthood and depose from it whomsoever they wish. Everything is topsy-turvy, and the saying of the proverb can be seen coming to pass: “those who are ruled lead their rulers.” And would that it were men who do this, rather than those who are not permitted to teach. Did I say teach? The blessed Paul did not permit them even to speak in the church. Yet I have heard someone say that women now assume such liberties as to rebuke the bishops of the Church more sharply than masters do their slaves.

12. PG 51:192.

13. PG 61:688–689.

14. PG 62:683.

15. Despite his expressed respect for women, and the personal relationships he had with Christian women, Chrysostom is much maligned by the feminists, who can tend to portray him as “misogynistic” and less than human. Tavard’s description of Chrysostom’s views on women is an example of the resulting distortion. Tavard, 82, says of Chrysostom that he “frequently falls into bad taste,” that his work on remarriage is “particularly savage,” but that he becomes “more human when he addresses himself to one particular person.” Such comments demonstrate a failure to understand or to accurately analyze the mind of this Father of the church, partly because of proceeding from the view that all who hold a role difference between men and women must be undervaluing women, partly for reasons treated toward the end of this chapter.

16. Swete 2:93.10–95.8.

17. PG 82:309.

18. PG 82:801.

19. We might also quote Ambrosiaster (probably from the end of the fourth century) in this regard. Although little is known about Ambrosiaster, except as the author of some writings attributed to Ambrose, his work is a witness to the thought of the patristic age:

It is obvious that woman is submitted to man’s power, and she has not authority. For she can neither teach, nor be a witness, nor give guarantees, nor administer justice, and so, how much less is she than capable of exercising power. (Questions Relating the Old to the New Testament 45.2–3; CSEL 50:82.14–83.7)

20. Funk, 190.8–17.

21. Apostolic Church Order 24.1–28 (Schermann, 31.10–33.6):

Andrew said: “It is helpful, brothers, to establish a ministry for women.” Peter said: “We have already made preparations. But concerning the sacrifice of the Body and Blood, let us make ourselves clear.” John said: “You have forgotten, brothers, that when our Master asked for the bread and cup and when he blessed it saying, ‘This is my body, this is my blood,’ he did not give permission to women to stand with us.” Martha said: “That’s on account of Mary, because He saw her smile.” Mary said: “It’s not because I laughed. For He had used to tell us, when He taught, that that which is weak will be saved by that which is strong.”

For a brief and helpful discussion of the Apostolic Church Order, and, in particular, of the above passage, see Gryson, 80–86.

22. Funk, 199.21–201.17.

23. Heféle, A History of the Councils of the Church, vol. 2, trans. by H. N. Oxenham (Edinburgh: T. & T. Clark, 1876), 305.

24. Ibid., 319.

25. Ibid., 293. On this Council, see also Lafontaine, “Le sexe masculin, condition de l’accession aux ordres, aux IVe et Ve siècles,” Revue de l’Université d’Ottawa 31, no. 4 (October–December 1961): 150.

26. Heféle, 2:420.

27. PL 59:55f.

28. PG 104:1025. Photius cites Canon 19 of Nicaea, which requires that returning members of the Paulianist heresy be re-baptized, and their clergy re-ordained. That canon makes clear that deaconesses are not to be considered a part of the ordained presbyterate: “We remind those deaconesses who are in this position, that as they have not been ordained, they must be classed merely among the laity.” See further Heféle, 1:430–431. Photius also cites Canon 15 of Chalcedon which regulates the laying on of hands for deaconesses, possibly as an indication that women are to be ordained to the diaconate but not the presbyterate. The fourteenth canon of the Quinisext (or Trullan) Council (692 AD) (viewed by Photius as providing the canons for the previous Sixth Ecumenical Council) reads: “Let the canon of our holy God-bearing Fathers be confirmed in this particular also; that a presbyter be not ordained before he is thirty years of age, even if he is a very worthy man, but let him be kept back. For our Lord Jesus was baptized and began to teach when he was thirty. In like manner let no deacon be ordained before he is twenty-five, nor a deaconess before she is forty.” See further Heféle, 5:226, for the text and some commentary. See also the very useful edition of The Seven Ecumenical Councils, ed. H. R. Percival, in A Select Library of Nicene and Post-Nicene Fathers, vol. 14. It contains the texts of the Councils, as well as a selection of excerpts from ancient and modern commentaries on each canon under the heading “ancient epitome.” For the canons mentioned here, see 40, 129–130, 279, and 372.

29. It is clear that by the fourth century, bishops were receiving the vows of virgins. It is less clear what kind of process existed earlier, and precisely when a distinct order of virgins began under the bishop’s direction. It is possible that, at first, virgins made their vows privately and remained in their family’s home, under their father’s authority. On virgins, see H. Leclercq, “Vièrge, Virginité,” in Dictionnaire d’archéologie Chretienne et de liturgie, vol. 15, pt. 2, 3094–3108.

30. This point is made generally by J. Gribomont, “Double Monasteries,” New Catholic Encyclopedia, 9:1021. It is applied more specifically to Pachomius and the monasteries of women related to him in Derwas Chitty, The Desert a City (Oxford: Blackwell, 1966), 23.

31. On the subject of abbesses with so-called “quasi-episcopal” authority, see P. de Langogne, “Abbesses” in Dictionnaire de théologie catholique, 1:17–22, and J. de Puniet’s article “Abbesses” in Dictionnaire de spiritualite, 1:57–61. In recent years, the role of these abbesses has been grossly misrepresented in feminist literature, perhaps, most notably by Joan Morris, The Lady Was a Bishop (New York: Macmillan, 1973). Elizabeth Kennan accurately assesses Morris’s book in a review in America, September 1, 1973, 125, where she states:

This is an exasperating book. It is a polemic with all the intellectual weaknesses and none of the rhetorical virtues of that genre. Joan Morris’ intention is to recall the age-old prominence of some women in the ecclesiastical hierarchy and to lay the blame for the eclipse of their positions on Renaissance male chauvinism. To establish such a neat dialectical pattern, she has had to strip her history of all social context and misinterpret at least one important canonical category: exemption from episcopal jurisdiction.

Much the same comment could be made of others who attempt to find in these abbesses a precedent which never existed.

32. There are four monasteries where the abbesses seem to have exercised even greater authority than most of the abbesses with “quasi-episcopal powers,” namely the Cistercian abbeys of las Huelgas and Conversano and the abbeys of Fontrevault and Quedlinburg. These abbeys were for the most part beneficiaries of some significant royal patronage. Exactly what kind of jurisdiction they did have is not completely clear. Three points are to be noted: the abbesses were not ordained to the presbyterate or episcopate, their privileges were eventually taken away from them as being inappropriate, and they were not authoritative examples but exceptions. There is no reason not to judge these abbeys as abuses due to royal patronage and distortions introduced by feudal customs into Christian life. Just as the existence of chantry priests in the Middle Ages is commonly regarded as an abuse, the existence of such abbesses can also be regarded as an abuse. On these abbeys, see Langogne, DTC, 1:17–22.

33. Innocent III’s prohibition is cited in Thomassin, Vetus et nova Eccl. disciplina (Venice, 1773), pt. 1, vol. 1, bk. 3, ch. 47, sec. 4.

34. Concerning patristic use of Timothy 2, see Chapter Eight, p. 203. Among the Fathers citing Cor 14 are Tertullian (CCL 1:291–292; 2:1210–1219), Epiphanius (GCS 37:478.16–31), John Chrysostom (PG 48:646), Theodoret (PG 82:348), Ambrosiaster (CSEL 81/2:163–164), and Jerome (PL 30:794).

35. This theme of weakness occurs in various patristic writings, as for example, Clement of Alexandria (PG 8:620f.), Origen (PG 12:296f.), Cyril of Alexandria (PG 68:1053), Epiphanius (PG 41:643), Augustine (PL 35:151), and Gregory the Great (PL 75:982–983).

36. PG 31:240–241.

37. Van der Meer is an example of both of these arguments. His general approach, while superficially appearing reasonable, is in fact problematic. The method he employs in his book, when its implications are drawn out beyond this single issue, makes it impossible to argue from tradition for anything. John Sheets (“Ordination of Women: The Issues,” American Ecclesiastical Review 169, no. 1 [January 1975]: 26) summarizes his evaluation of van der Meer’s book by saying that the “whole methodology is in fact questionable.”

38. Some examples among the books that use this approach are: Daly, The Church and the Second Sex, 43–48; McGrath, 41–44; Kress, 109–146; and Rosemary R. Ruether, “Misogynism and Virginal Feminism,” in Religion and Sexism (New York: Simon and Schuster, 1974), 150–183.

39. On woman as inferior, see for instance John Chrysostom (PG 51:230). Another passage from the same author (Homily 20 on Ephesians, PG 62:142) highlights the distinction between worth (or here, “dignity”) and position. In speaking of the wife, he states: “She is second authority, possessing indeed an authority, and a considerable equality of dignity, but at the same time the husband has somewhat of superiority.” Here again, “superiority” as with “inferior” as mentioned above, refers to position, not to personal worth. In a similar vein, see Ambrosiaster (PL 17:239).

40. The Summa Theologica of St. Thomas Aquinas 1.92.1 (Condon: Burns, Oates and Washbourne, 1922), 275–276:

As regards the individual nature, woman is defective and misbegotten, for the active force in the male seed tends to the production of a perfect likeness in the masculine sex; while the production of women comes from defect in the active force or from some material indisposition, or even from some external influence, such as that of a south wind, which is moist, as the Philosopher observes (De Gener. Animal. 4.2). On the other hand, as regards human nature in general, woman is not misbegotten, but is included in nature’s intention as directed to the work of generation. Now the general intention of nature depends upon God, who is the universal Author of nature. Therefore, in producing nature, God formed not only the male, but also the female.

41. An example of a quote which stems from the general lack of education among women of the time can be found in Cyril of Alexandria’s Commentary on the Gospel of John, bk. 12 (Pusey 3:133ff.). Augustine is an example of a Father who sees in women a stronger and less easily controlled sexual inclination.

42. CCL 1:343–344.

43. CCL 1:352.

44. Examples of such typology are abundant in the writings of the Fathers. See, for example, Ambrose (PL 16:325), Augustine (PL 35:1395), Origen (PG 12:296), Justin (PG 6:710–711), Gregory the Great (PL 75:982f.).

45. Van der Meer, 59.

46. The report on the ordination of women issued by the Pontifical Biblical Commission (Origins 6, no. 6 [July 1, 1976]: 92–96) illustrates this distinction between headship/​eldership within the Christian community (as seen in the early church) and sacramental ministry. The report divides its final section (pt. 4) into these two subheadings. The vote of the Commission was based only on the latter subsection and on the fact that scripture does not treat the sacramental function traditionally ascribed to the “priest” (presbyter).

47. Van der Meer, 100.

48. J. H. Newman, An Essay on the Development of Christian Doctrine (London: Longmans, Green & Co., 1920), 3–32.

Chapter 14

The Authority of Scripture

1. Kierkegaard presents one of the most penetrating analyses of the necessity of being addressed by God personally in scripture. See especially S. Kierkegaard, “For Self-Examination,” in For Self-Examination and Judge for Yourselves, trans. Walter Lowrie (Princeton: Princeton University Press, 1968), 50–74. He also makes this point forcefully in the Philosophical Fragments (Princeton: Princeton University Press, 1962), esp. 61–67, and in the Concluding Unscientific Postscript (Princeton: Princeton University Press, 1941), esp. 339, 536, 538.

2. For a contemporary example of the view of the authority of scripture flowing from the genius of its authors, see C. H. Dodd, The Authority of the Bible (London: Collins, 1900), 13–40, 264–274. Kierkegaard deals with this position with great insight in “The Difference Between an Apostle and a Genius,” in Authority and Revelation, trans. Walter Lowrie (New York: Harper & Row, 1956). Dodd significantly modified his views on this subject in later life.

3. For a helpful summary of the authority of scripture in the period of the New Testament, see R. Longenecker, Biblical Exegesis in the Apostolic Period (Grand Rapids: Eerdmans, 1975): especially for Jewish exegesis, 19–20; for Jesus’ use of the Old Testament, 51–78; and for the Evangelists’, 79–103. Important statements of the authority of scripture can be found in Theophilus of Antioch, Ad autolycum 2.22, 3.12, 3.14; Athenagoras, Apol. 7; Athenagoras, Legatio pro Christianus 7, 9; Irenaeus, Adv. Haereses 3.11, 3.18; Clement of Alexandria, Stromata 2.2.9; Origen, Philocalia 13; Gregory of Nyssa, Contra Eunom. 1.114, 1.126, 1.107; Augustine, De doctrina Christiana 2.5.6; Aquinas, S. T. 1.1.8; Aquinas, Quodlibeta 12.26; Council of Florence (1442), DS 1334; Luther, D. Martin Luthers Werke, Kritische Gesamtausgabe (Weimar, 1883), 7:315, 7:317, 7:453, 7:455, 8:108; 30/2:420; 40/1:119; 50:206; Calvin, Institutes 1.7.1; Council of Trent (1556), DS 1501; Thirty-Nine Articles of Religion (1563), 4; Second Helvetic Confession (1566), 1; Westminster Confession (1646), 1.2.4; Twenty-Five Articles of Religion (1784), 5; Abstract of Principles (1859), 1; Second Vatican Council (1965), Dei Verbum 21.

4. The authority of the Bible in its traditional formulation is founded in the authority of God as someone other than man, over him, and deserving of man’s submission by the nature of who he is. The appropriate response to divinity is reverence and submission. The rightness of this response is not dependent upon God’s use of force (although the scriptural teaching indicates that he is willing to do so), nor upon his making the rightfulness of his demands evident. It is rather primarily dependent upon the intrinsic nature of the relationship between God and man. In this sense it is analogous to the authority of a father over his children which likewise is founded in the nature of the relationship. For this same reason, even though the term “authority” is “legal,” it is more than legal. It expresses an important aspect of many personal relationships.

5. Barr, in The Bible in the Modern World, 23–29, criticizes the use of the term “authority” for describing the status of the Bible. Much of the critique is centered upon the way in which the term is unacceptable to many modern thinkers because of their dislike of authority. He does not observe with the same clarity that the reality claimed by those who use the word is, in fact what is disliked and not just the word itself. The issue is fundamentally an issue about how God and the things of God are to be approached.

6. Augustine states the practical application of the authority of scripture by saying: “If I do find anything in these books which seems contrary to truth, I decide that either the text is corrupt, or the translator did not follow what was really said, or that I failed to understand it” (Ep. 82.1.3 [PL 33:277]).

7. The Sumerian root of the Greek kanōn has as its primary meaning “reed” (see, e.g., Kgs 14:15; Job 40:21). In Greek it can mean a straight rod or bar, staves which preserve the shape of a shield, the line which carpenters and masons use, or metaphorically, a rule, standard, model, or paradigm. In the KJV New Testament it occurs as “rule,” (Phil 3:16; Gal 6:16) and in the RSV as “limit” (Cor 10:13). It is first used in reference to scripture by Athanasius. For good summary descriptions of the concept, see R. H. Pfeiffer, “Canon of the Old Testament,” Interpreter’s Dictionary of the Bible (IDB), 1:499; Brown, “Canonicity,” Jerome Biblical Commentary, 518.

8. In various formulations this traditional understanding of the nature of scripture is shared by many contemporary theologians. Among those who reflect this approach are: Pierre Benoit, “Inspiration and Revelation,” in The Human Reality of Sacred Scripture, ed. P. Benoit, R. E. Murphy, B. van Iersel, Concilium 10 (New York: Paulist, 1965), 6–24; Louis Bouyer, The Meaning of Sacred Scripture (Notre Dame: University of Notre Dame Press, 1958); Yves Congar, The Revelation of God (New York: Herder & Herder, 1968), 20–23; J. Norval Geldenhuys, “Authority and the Bible,” in Revelation and the Bible, ed. Carl F. H. Henry (Grand Rapids: Baker, 1969), 371–386; Rene Latourelle, Theology of Revelation (New York: Alba House, 1966), 444; Paul S. Minear, Commands of Christ (Nashville: Abingdon Press, 1972), 12–21; Anders Nygren, The Significance of the Bible for the Church (Philadelphia: Fortress Press, 1963); Karl Rahner, “Scripture and Theology,” in Theological Investigations, vol. 6 (New York: Seabury Press, 1974), 89–93; Herman Ridderbos, Studies in Scripture and Its Authority (St. Catherine’s: Paideia Press, 1978), 20–36; Karl Hermann Schelkle, “Sacred Scripture and Word of God,” in Dogmatic vs. Biblical Theology, ed. H. Vorgrimler (London: Burns and Oates, 1964), 11–30; Luis Alonso Schokel, The Inspired Word (New York: Herder & Herder, 1965).

9. For good discussions of this and related issues, see Carl F. H. Henry (ed.), Revelation and the Bible; J. Baillie, The Idea of Revelation in Recent Thought (London: Oxford University Press, 1965); K. Rahner, Inspiration in the Bible (New York: Herder & Herder, 1961); K. Rahner and J. Ratzinger, Revelation and Tradition (New York: Herder & Herder, 1966); J. T. Burtchaell, Catholic Theories of Biblical Inspiration Since 1810 (Cambridge: Cambridge University Press, 1969).

10. For a good discussion of this concept see C. K. Barrett, “Paul and the ‘Pillar’ Apostles,” in Studia Paulina in hon. J. DeZwann, ed. W. C. van Unnik and G. Sevenster (Haarlem: E. F. Bohn, 1953), 1–19. See also Rahner, Inspiration in the Bible, 26–28.

11. Clement 42.

12. The Second Vatican Council clearly enunciates the Catholic principle that all that the Catholic Church teaches must be measured by scripture. See Second Vatican Council, Dei Verbum 2.10, in Austin Flannery, OP (ed.), Vatican Council II (Northpoint: Costello, 1975), 756. On the relationship between the authority of the church and that of scripture in Catholic theology, see K. Rahner, Inspiration in the Bible, 77. See also footnotes in Chapter Twelve, p. 289.

13. Second Vatican Council, Dei Verbum 3.11, in Flannery, 756–757.

14. The canon has currently received a great deal of discussion. The issue is not only the formation of the original canon and its finality (see David L. Dungan, “The New Testament Canon in Recent Study,” Interpretation 29, no. 4 [October 1, 1975]: 339–351, for a good survey of this area), but more importantly calling into question scriptural material already received as canonical. Some researchers would consider significant portions of the New Testament as non-canonical in fact. Their approach would logically call for a new New Testament. One reason that a new canon constructed along these lines has not been published is the fact that the criterion of selection differs from scholar to scholar. There would be little agreement among them as to what should be considered canonical and what not.

There are also many who simply deny the authority of scripture, yet claim to be presenting a Christian approach. For an example of a straightforward denial of the authority of scripture see Robin Scroggs, “Tradition, Freedom and the Abyss,” in New Theology No. 8, ed. Martin E. Marty and Dean G. Peerman (New York: Macmillan, 1971), 86–87. He states, “Neither from a theological nor from a historical point of view can there be the slightest hope of claiming the New Testament as canon” (92). Others would accept the New Testament as the canon, but in fact deny it any normativeness other than that which each Christian reader gives it. Ernst Käsemann presents such an approach in “The Canon of the New Testament and the Unity of the Church” in Essays on New Testament Themes (London: SCM Press, 1964), 95–107. Dennis Nineham in The Use and the Abuse of the Scripture (London: Macmillan, 1976) presents a more fully developed view of such an approach. Gregory Baum in “The Bible as Norm,” in New Horizons (New York: Paulist, 1972), provides a Catholic example. Barr in The Bible works to reestablish a concept of canonicity that would be acceptable to most modern scholars. He expounds the view that the scripture contains the classical model for the Christian faith and asserts that faith must “relate itself to classically-expressed models” in order to be Christian (118). He recognizes the chaos that Christianity would be in without any canon, but is unable to provide it with enough authority to effectively function as a norm. His article “The Authority of Scripture,” The Ecumenical Review 21, no. 2 (April 1969): 135–166, provides a good synopsis of current challenges to scriptural authority.

Neoorthodoxy is more difficult to locate in relation to these issues. It attempted to bridge the gap between the traditional and Liberal interpretations of scripture by accommodating the modern critical approach of the Liberals to a more traditional understanding of scripture. Its champions held that, although scripture could be said to contain God’s word and revelation, not all of scripture was God’s word. This attempted accommodation was ultimately unsuccessful. For good critiques of this attempt see Langdon Gilkey, Naming the Whirlwind (New York: Bobbs-Merrill, 1969), 80–101; Childs, 103–104; Barr, Fundamentalism, 213ff.

The result of the denial of the authority of scripture among many modern scholars is the loss of a consensus about the substance of Christianity. Their sources of authority are no longer in Christian revelation, but elsewhere. Hence, beyond agreement about historical views of the scripture and of Christianity, they are unable to agree upon or even present a statement of faith in Christ.

Childs, 99–107, gives an excellent analysis of the weakness caused to Christian biblical studies by a failure to accept the authority of the canon as well as a very helpful exposition of the role of an authoritative scripture.

At root, the issue is one of which authority people will accept for their lives. Occasionally this issue comes to clarity of expression among some who do not accept scripture as having authority. Baum, in “The Bible as Norm,” expresses his own personal choice this way: “I prefer to think that man may not submit to an authority outside of himself: the ground on which he builds his life must be within him. He must stand on his own feet” (49).

15. The word hypotagē is here used for submission to teaching. The term “submission” as used in the text is an English equivalent of a biblical usage and expresses another aspect of the concept of “subordination” described earlier.

16. For an accurate reflection of the role of personal freedom in modern secular thought, see Gilkey, 365–397. The locus classicus for modern man’s abhorrence of authority is Adorno et al., The Authoritarian Personality (New York: Harper and Brothers, 1950). See also the critique of H. H. Wyman and P. B. Sheatsley, “The Authoritarian Personality,” in Studies in the Scope and Method of ‘The Authoritarian Personality’ (Glencoe: Free Press, 1954). A good example of reading this modern notion of freedom back into the scriptural texts is found in Rudolf Pesch, “Jesus, a Free Man,” in Jesus Christ and Human Freedom, ed. E. Schillebeeckx and B. van Iersel, Concilium 93 (New York: Herder & Herder, 1974), 56–70.

17. Paul, “the apostle of freedom,” uses the vocabulary of slavery almost twice as much as he does that of freedom. See David Stanley, “Freedom and Slavery in Pauline Usage,” The Way 15, no. 2 (April 1975): 94.

18. In the New Testament, freedom (eleutheria) is never presented as personal autonomy. Rather, it is presented as freedom from sin (Rom 6:18–23; Jn 8:31–36), freedom from access to God only through the performance of the Law (Rom 7:3f.; 8:2; 10:4; Gal 2:4; 4:21–31; 5:1, 13; but see also Rom 2:25; 7:12; 8:7; Gal 5:3; 6:13), and freedom from death (Rom 6:21f.; 8:21). For helpful summaries of the New Testament view of freedom, see Schlier, TDNT, 2:487–502; and Kleinknecht and Gutbrod, TDNT, 4:1022–1090. See also Stanislaus Lyonnet, “Christian Freedom and the Law of the Spirit According to St. Paul,” in Stanislaus Lyonnet and Ignace de la Potterie, The Christian Lives by the Spirit (New York: Alba House, 1971), 145–174.

19. The “law” (nomos) can refer either to the obligations imposed by the Old Covenant (the “Mosaic Law”) or to the standard and judgment of God. Paul states that the law of the obligations of the Old Covenant is fulfilled and superseded in Christ and in the New Covenant. Thus he says: “Christ is the end of the law in its connection with righteousness to all who believe” (Rom 10:4). However, in Romans 2 and elsewhere he stands by the law as the continuing standard and judgment of God. The ethical prescriptions of both the Old and New Covenant are not abrogated in Christ. For helpful presentations of Paul’s approach to freedom from the law, see R. Longenecker, Paul: Apostle of Liberty (New York: Harper & Row, 1964), 144–147; C. E. B. Cranfield, “St. Paul and the Law,” in New Testament Issues, ed. Richard Batey (New York: Harper, 1970), 148–172; C. A. A. Scott, Christianity According to Paul (Cambridge: Cambridge University Press, 1927), 42; and C. H. Dodd, “Ennomos Christou,” in Studia Paulina, 110, where Dodd changes from his earlier view found in his Meaning of Paul (Manchester: John Rylands Library, 1934), 146–148. See also the discussion in Chapter Six, pp. 142143.

20. For descriptions of the development of the notion of “human rights,” see W. G. Andrews, Constitutions and Constitutionalism (Princeton: Van Nostrand, 1968); Richard P. Claude “The Classical Model of Human Rights Development,” in Comparative Human Rights, ed. Richard P. Claude (Baltimore: Johns Hopkins University Press, 1976), 6–50; Maurice Cranston, “Some Aspects of the History of Freedom,” in Theory and Politics, ed. Klaus von Beyme (Haag: Martinus Nijhoff, 1971), 18–35; C. H. McIlwain, Constitutionalism Ancient and Modern (Ithaca: Cornell University Press, 1940).

21. For helpful treatments of the Israelite constitution see John Bright, History of Israel, 140ff.; Adolphe Lods, “The Religion of Israel: Origins” in Record and Revelation, ed. H. Wheeler Robinson (Oxford: Oxford University Press, 1968), 187–215; Albrecht Alt, “The Origins of Israelite Law,” in Essays on Old Testament History and Religion (Oxford: Basil Blackwell, 1966), 81–132, esp. 122–126, 129–132.

22. There is an approach held by some theologians in the last sixty years that holds that scriptural revelation is not propositional. The real revelation of God is “the Christ event” (e.g., L. Thornton, P. Tillich, R. Bultmann) or God’s acts (e.g., G. E. Wright, W. Pannenberg), or something similar. The position as a whole goes beyond the scope of this book to discuss. Chapter Eleven of this book contains the developed alternate understanding. There are many ways in which viewing scripture as primarily “propositional” is distorting, but the non-propositional view of scriptural revelation cannot be pushed to the point of leaving no role for the teaching in scripture without being seriously at odds with what the writers of scripture understood themselves to be doing. Barr makes a very helpful contribution to the discussion in The Bible, 122–126.

23. On this point see Bartlet, Church Life and Church Order During the First Four Centuries (Oxford: Basil Blackwell, 1943), 32; E. Schweizer, Church Order in the New Testament (London: SCM Press, 1961), ch. 12, 28e, 28f.

24. See, for example, Schweizer; W. D. Davies, “A Normative Pattern of Church Life in the New Testament?” in Christian Origins and Judaism (Philadelphia: The Westminster Press, 1962), 199–229; R. Brown, “Unity and Diversity in New Testament Ecclesiology,” in New Testament Essays (Milwaukee: Bruce, 1965), 36–47; J. D. G. Dunn, Unity and Diversity in the New Testament (London: SCM Press, 1978), 103–123. This concern reflects a more general approach taken by some theologians to the diversity within the New Testament in general. This approach is related to the issues surrounding the “canon within the canon” and the “new quest for the historical Jesus.” For some examples see Dunn; Käsemann, “The Canon”; and G. Ebeling, “The New Testament and the Multiplicity of Confessions,” in The Word of God and Traditions (Philadelphia: Fortress, 1968), 148–160.

25. This position is developed by R. E. Brown, “The Ordination of Women,” in his Crises Facing the Church (New York: Paulist, 1975), 52–55.

26. This position is, of course, denied by the advocates of a “charismatic church order” in Pauline churches. The issue is treated in Chapter Five, footnote, p. 130.

27. The most developed treatment of the question of diversity in the New Testament, Dunn’s Unity and Diversity, finds only one unifying factor: “Christ,” “the unity between Jesus the man and Jesus the exalted one” (371). He observes that there are others, such as love of neighbor, but avers that they can all be “narrowed back down to” the one unifying strand. The book is valuable as the most complete study of the area available. His methodology, however, makes his view of the unity in the New Testament too narrow. The principles he uses that are most relevant to our subject are a tendency to assume diversity and expect unity to be proved, a tendency to assert diversity on the basis of difference in formulation when the realities being asserted could be identical, a tendency to neglect the unity that is not distinctive of Christianity in relationship to other groups, especially Judaism, and a failure to consider fully the stream of ethical teaching in the New Testament which provides some other strands of unity which are less tractable to his form of gospel reductionism. Finally, and most significantly, his methodology does not allow for combining the New Testament teaching into a synthesis, where all the elements of the synthesis are not presented by all the authors of the New Testament (an approach that someone who looks on the New Testament as a whole as a teaching authority would instinctively adopt). There is much diversity in the New Testament, but the New Testament approach to roles of men and women contains some important areas of uniformity.

28. Barr’s critique of related approaches in The Bible, 77, is perceptive and helpful.

29. As, for example, in A. Kosnick et al., Human Sexuality (New York: Paulist, 1977), 86, 151–152.

30. With regard to submitting to scriptural teaching, there are two questions which regularly arise:

  1. Does submitting to scriptural teaching in the area of men-women roles mean that Christian women have to wear headcoverings in worship? The answer depends on giving an answer to yet another question: Is the headcovering itself the point of the passage, or is it more likely some kind of external expression of men-women order? To put it another way, when Paul laid down the rule about headcoverings, was he mainly concerned with headcoverings as the only proper expression of men-women roles, or was he primarily concerned about men-women roles and order being properly expressed and would he accept a different expression that was culturally the proper one in that society? The question itself is difficult, as the discussion in Chapter Seven showed, but insofar as the question of submission to scripture is concerned, it would be easier to believe that somebody’s concern was the intent of the passage if that person was working to find an expression that was suitable to our culture than if that person was simply content to leave the whole passage aside claiming uncertainty. This point is posed well in R. C. Sproul, “Controversy at Culture Gap,” Eternity 27 (May 1976): 13–15, 40.
  2. How does a Christian submit to the Old Testament? It is not enough to say that we are no longer obligated to follow the Old Testament. Jesus approached the Old Testament as his authority, as did Paul and every other New Testament author, as well as the early Fathers. The Old Testament is likewise inspired, canonical teaching that is God’s message to us. However, a Christian cannot approach the Old Testament the same way a Jew would, either now or in the time just before the birth of Jesus. There is a Christian interpretation of the Old Testament that allows us to know which things were for a stage of God’s dealing with man and which things are for the times after the coming of the Messiah. For example, divorce was given according to the law of Moses for hardness of heart, but a Christian would not approach divorce the same way a Jew following the law of Moses would, because followers of the Messiah would approach it according to what was established by God from the beginning (see Mt 19:3–9).

31. James Barr, in an appendix to his Old and New in Interpretation (London: SCM Press, 1966), proposed that we view Fundamentalists primarily in terms of their holding to traditional doctrinal orthodoxy. This has some merit in explaining the ensemble of opinions that the original Fundamentalists came up with as the fundamentals. They were certainly traditional Protestant Evangelicals and today’s Fundamentalists are likewise. However, such a view misses the thrust of the anti-Modernist movement. The Fundamentalists have not been strong on tradition, not even their own. Their reaction was more on the basis that the Modernists were jettisoning Christian realities that were essential to a living Christian faith. Their commitment was more to the content of the fundamentals than to their own tradition. Barr’s recent book Fundamentalism (London: SCM Press, 1977) takes up the discussion in a different and more developed way. He focuses, however, more on the approach of current Fundamentalists (and Evangelicals) to scripture interpretation. The issue of the origin of Fundamentalism in a response to Modernism-Liberalism, however, is not focused on in the book, perhaps as C. F. H. Henry points out in his review of Barr’s book “Those Incomprehensible British Fundamentalists,” in Christianity Today 22 (1978): 1092–1096, 1146–1150, 1205–1208, because Barr himself takes very much of the Modernist-Liberal position. Barr’s emphasis on the doctrine of inerrancy in analyzing Fundamentalism is perceptive and helpful, but the doctrine of inerrancy was more part of the intellectual underpinning of an attempt to defend what was seen as the essentials of the Christian faith.

For a good short summary of the history of Fundamentalism, see Sidney Ahlstrom, A Religious History of the American People (New Haven: Yale University Press, 1972), 808–816, 909–915, 956–960.

32. A good summary of the fundamentals is found in William Bell Riley’s “The Faith of the Fundamentalists,” Current History 26 (1927): 434–435. He writes:

Fundamentalism undertakes to reaffirm the greater Christian doctrines. . . . It does not attempt to set forth every Christian doctrine. It has never known the elaboration that characterizes the great denominational confessions. But it did lay them side by side, and, out of their extensive statements, elect nine points upon which to rest its claims to Christian attention. They were and are as follows:

  1. We believe in the scriptures of the Old and New Testament as verbally inspired by God, and inerrant in the original writings, and that they are of supreme and final authority in faith and life.
  2. We believe in one God, eternally existing in three persons, Father, Son, and Holy Spirit.
  3. We believe that Jesus Christ was begotten by the Holy Spirit, and born of the Virgin Mary, and is true God and true man.
  4. We believe that man was created in the image of God, that he sinned and thereby incurred not only physical death, but also that spiritual death which is from God; and that all human beings are born with a sinful nature, and, in the case of those who reach moral responsibility, become sinners in thought, word and deed.
  5. We believe that the Lord Jesus Christ died for our sins according to the scriptures, as a representative and substitutionary sacrifice; and that all that believe in him are justified on the ground of his shed blood.
  6. We believe in the resurrection of the crucified body of our Lord, in his ascension into Heaven, and in his present life there for us, as High Priest and Advocate.
  7. We believe in “that blessed hope,” the personal, premillennial, and imminent return of our Lord and Savior Jesus Christ.
  8. We believe that all who receive by faith the Lord Jesus Christ, are born again of the Holy Spirit and thereby become children of God.
  9. We believe in the bodily resurrection of the just and the unjust, the everlasting felicity of the saved, and the everlasting conscious suffering of the lost.

Riley’s premillennialism was by no means universal throughout the Fundamentalist movement. Premillennialists draw upon certain New Testament passages (especially Rv 20:4–6) to support the historicity of Christ’s thousand-year reign with certain martyrs as an interregnum at the end of time. Premillennialists understand Christ’s return to precede this reign, while postmillenarianists argue that his coming follows upon the millennium.

The importance of millennialism for Fundamentalists is sometimes overstressed. For example, see Sandeen, The Roots of Fundamentalism: British and American Millenarianism 1800–1930 (Chicago: University of Chicago Press, 1970); Barr, Fundamentalism, 190–207. For a more balanced approach see George Marsden, “Defining Fundamentalism,” Christian Scholars Review, Winter 1971; and “From Fundamentalism to Evangelicalism: A Historical Analysis” in The Evangelicals, ed. David F. Wells and John D. Woodbridge (Nashville: Abingdon Press, 1975), 122–145.

33. See Lamentabili (The Holy Office, 1907) and the encyclical letter of Pius X, Pascendi, of the same year, for a statement of the official Catholic position.

34. The term “Fundamentalism” is used more in the United States and perhaps British commonwealth countries for these approaches to questions of scriptural interpretation. European Protestant scholars might be more inclined to use the term “Biblicism.” Since this term does not involve using a name of an existing group for an approach to scriptural interpretation that is not clearly coextensive with the group in question, it is much preferable.

35. See footnotes, p. 674. See also Vinson Synan, The Holiness-Pentecostal Movement in the United States (Grand Rapids: Eerdmans, 1971), 188.

36. Those who hold what is often called a “dictation view” of inspiration (the view that the exact words of the text were given to the human author by the Holy Spirit) will also often be termed Fundamentalists by those who hold a different view. This, however, is not as common a concern as it once was and does not come into the scope of this book.

37. It is a measure of the prejudice against Fundamentalists that it is not recognized that Fundamentalist churches often contain scholars. They rarely obtain academic recognition outside of their own circles, because of a refusal to accept the dominant principles of scriptural interpretation. Their refusal, however, is often a thoughtful and educated refusal. The statement in the text is especially true if one includes scholars who would prefer the title Evangelical to that of Fundamentalist, but who likewise reject many of the principles in much of modern biblical criticism.

Chapter 15

Bypassing Scriptural Authority

1. Elizabeth Farians, “Justice: The Hard Line,” Andover-Newton Quarterly, March 1972, 199.

2. This is the approach of many of the liberation theologians. See, for example, Hugo Assmann, Theology for a Nomad Church (New York: Orbis, 1976), 54–55; Bonino, 61–83; Fiorenza, “Feminist Theology,” 30–44; Moltmann, 103–105; Segundo, 120–122. The difficulties some liberation theologians exhibit in understanding scripture are pointed out by John Howard Yoder, “Exodus,” Sojourners 5, no. 7 (September 1976): 26–29; and Stanley Hauerwas, “The Politics of Charity,” Interpretation 31 (1977): 252–262. Liberation theology is often used as a basis for feminist thinking.

3. Wahlberg, 103.

4. J. M. Ford, “Tongues–Leadership–Women,” 195.

5. Devor, 368.

6. M. Daly, The Church and the Second Sex, 39.

7. J. M. Ford, 195.

8. Devor, 378, 379, 381.

9. Van der Meer, 45.

10. For an example of systematic evaluation of the worth of scriptural teaching on the basis of the “cultural setting” of the New Testament, see Elizabeth Schüssler Fiorenza, “Understanding God’s Revealed Word,” Catholic Charismatic 1, no. 6 (February/​March 1977): 7.

11. This approach is taken by Jewett, Man as Male and Female, 111–147, and V. Mollenkott, “Women and the Bible,” 20–25.

12. M. Daly, The Church and the Second Sex, 41–42.

13. This is a noticeable feature of much contemporary Christian literature. Some, for example, Robin Scroggs, in “Tradition, Freedom and the Abyss,” 94–95, simply equate the “insights” of contemporary culture with the truth and baptize them as “Christian.” The liberation theologians rally around the revolutionary praxis, while others take as their starting point the Western notion of personal freedom, or the doctrine of this or that psychological theory. In all of these, the search for a new foundation is generated by the inability to ground one’s Christianity in scripture as the authoritative word of God.

14. For the same point well made from the perspective of a literary critic, see C. S. Lewis, “Modern Theology and Biblical Criticism,” in Christian Reflections, ed. Walter Hooper (Grand Rapids, Eerdmans, 1967), 158, 161–166.

15. The Bultmannian attempt to arrive at the authentic Christian message has been one of the most influential variants in recent years. Bultmann approached this area with the presupposition that in scripture we find not only the Spirit of God, but also “other spirits.” The task, then, is to ferret out what is genuine revelation from what is not. Bultmann writes: “. . . it is a matter not only of the relativity of the word, but also the fact that no man—not even Paul—can always speak only from the subject matter. Other spirits also come to expression through him than the Spirit of Christ. Hence the criticism can never be radical enough” (“Karl Barths Römerbrief in zweiter Auflage,” Christliche Welt 36 [1922]: 372f., cited in James M. Robinson and John B. Cobb, The New Hermeneutic, New Frontiers in Theology 2 [New York: Harper & Row, 1964], 31).

The search for a “canon within the canon” is part of the attempt to discover what is genuine revelation within the scripture and what is not. The “quest for the historical Jesus” is likewise a part of this attempt but, although more widely known, is only tangentially relevant to the issues in this book. The search for a “canon within the canon” is related to some traditional theological approaches which in fact and often in theory work with views of scripture which see parts of the scriptural material as more central than others. Luther’s approach to justification by faith would be a particularly influential example here. Some of the moderate approaches to “the canon within the canon,” like that of Dunn in Unity, 374–376, seem close to such traditional approaches insofar as the accent is on certain parts of scripture having greater weight or centrality. Käsemann, on the other hand, in “Begründet der neutestamentliche Kanon die Einheit der Kirche?” in Das Neue Testament als Kanon, ed. Ernst Käsemann (Göttingen: Vandenhoeck and Ruprecht, 1970), makes very explicit that the concern is to find a canon which is authoritative within the New Testament because, in his view, the various strands within the New Testament are too much at odds with one another to be a unified canon. Nonetheless, a gulf divides approaches like Dunn’s from the traditional discussions because of the failure to accept the whole New Testament as authoritative and inspired. Barr’s approach in The Bible in the Modern World (New York: Harper & Row, 1970), 159–161, is only superficially closer, because of his inability to find a successful place for the inspiration of the whole canon. Brevard Childs in Biblical Theology in Crisis analyzes the shortcomings of these approaches very well (see esp. 102).

16. There are other places where contradiction has been asserted, e.g., between Genesis 1 and 2, between Timothy 2:1 and Romans 5:12–21, etc. The two major purported contradictions are between Jesus and Paul, and between Galatians 3:28f. and the rest of Paul’s teaching. Some, like Devor, 380, see the contradictions even within one passage in Paul.

17. It would be difficult to overestimate the influence of Hegel upon modern Christian thought. In bringing together the results of modern philosophical reflection and Lutheran Christianity, he was able to convince many Christian thinkers that the traditional distinctions between the human and the divine, secular history and salvation history, etc., were no longer tenable. This was foundational for contemporary theological reflection.

Where Christianity saw itself as different from secular philosophy, Hegel understood this dialectical opposition as finally overcome in the aufgehoben. The result is a secular philosophy called “Christianity.” Kierkegaard correctly assesses the effect of this maneuver in the following journal entry:

The greater honesty in even the most bitter attacks of an earlier age upon Christianity was that the essentially Christian was fairly well allowed to remain intact.

The danger in Hegel was that he altered Christianity—and thereby achieved agreement with his philosophy.

In general it is characteristic of an age of reason not to let the task remain intact and say: No—but to alter the task and then say: Yes, of course, we are agreed.

The hypocrisy of reason is infinitely treacherous. That is why it is so difficult to take aim. (X4 A429, n.d., 1851)

On Hegel’s understanding of Christianity see Stephen Crites, In the Twilight of Christendom (Chambersburg, Pa.: American Academy of Religion, 1972), 35–57; Crites, “The Gospel According to Hegel,” The Journal of Religion 46 (1966): 246–263; and Emil L. Fackenheim, The Religious Dimension in Hegel’s Thought (Bloomington: Indiana University Press, 1967).

Although not many contemporary thinkers would identify themselves as Hegelians, most have been deeply affected by him—either directly or indirectly. For the history and effect of Hegelianism see Charles Taylor, Hegel (New York: Cambridge University Press, 1975), 537–571; and Richard J. Bernstein, “Why Hegel Now?” Review of Metaphysics 31, no. 1 (September 1977), 29–60. For Hegel’s influence on modern theology, see Gilkey, 49–57, 65, 73–78, 186n, 187. On Hegel as the father of the modern secularization of Christian thought, see R. Bultmann, History and Eschatology (New York: Harper, 1957), 56, 62–70, 73, 82, 89, 120; Karl Lowith, Meaning in History (Chicago: University of Chicago Press, 1949), 1–19, 52–59; 189–223; Lowith, From Hegel to Nietzsche (New York: Holt, Rinehart & Winston, 1964); and Kenley R. Dove, “Hegel and the Secularization Hypothesis,” in The Legacy of Hegel, ed. J. J. O’Malley et al. (The Hague: Martinus Nijhoff, 1973), 144–155.

18. The analytical, oppositional tendency has prevailed since the advent of the historical-critical method and is dominant today. The Biblical Theology movement, with its concern for the unity of the New Testament, has been perhaps the major exception to this statement.

Chapter 16

Men’s and Women’s Differences  ▷  Individual Characteristics

1. For a vivid description of the Victorian image of woman’s nature and role, see Janet Dunbar, The Early Victorian Woman (London: George G. Harrap & Co., 1953).

2. Such statements are common in both the social and natural sciences and are referred to as “probabilistic generalizations” or “statistical assertions.” For a good concise discussion of their role in the sciences, see Ernest Nagel, The Structure of Science (New York: Harcourt, Brace & World, 1961), 503–504.

3. See E. Maccoby and C. Jacklin, The Psychology of Sex Differences (Stanford: Stanford University Press, 1974), 65. The entire organization of the Maccoby/​Jacklin book is based on the distinction between “Intellect and Achievement” and “Social Behavior.”

4. For a helpful treatment of the relationship between descriptive and experimental methods, see Wolfgang Kohler, Gestalt Psychology (New York: Liveright, 1947), 34–57. Kohler uses the terms “qualitative” and “quantitative” in a way closely approximating “descriptive” and “experimental.”

5. Kohler, 40–41, briefly chronicles the history of natural science in order to demonstrate that qualitative methods must precede quantitative methods.

6. This preference for experimental methods is found in most striking form in the literature of behaviorist psychology. For two classic popular expositions of behaviorism, see John B. Watson, The Ways of Behaviorism (New York: Harper and Brothers Publishers, 1928) and B. F. Skinner, Science and Human Behavior (New York: Macmillan, 1953). In principle, neither Watson, 8–19, nor Skinner, 37–39, object to descriptive methods. Though they place a higher value on experimental methods, they also recognize the need for accurate description to precede experimentation. The main clash between behaviorist and descriptive social scientists concerns rather those aspects of human experience that are valid objects for scientific description. For the behaviorist, only objective external action, “behavior,” can provide the subject material of social science. Though one must begin with crude description, “behavior” is always potentially measurable and quantifiable. Many social scientists are dissatisfied, however, with this limitation on the range of human experience that is fit for scientific study. For a helpful phenomenological critique of behaviorism, see Maurice Roche, Phenomenology, Language and the Social Sciences (London: Routledge & Kegan Paul, 1973), 105–110. Roche also takes behaviorism to task for its “physicalism,” “reductionism,” and “determinism,” 85–104.

7. For a forceful statement of this approach, see R. Carlson, “Understanding Women: Implications for Personality Theory and Research,” Journal of Social Issues 28, no. 2 (Spring 1972): 20. Carlson recommends psychological study of the differences between men and women involving “naturalistic observation, sensitivity to the intrinsic structure and qualitative patterning of phenomena studied, and greater personal participation of the investigator.”

8. See S. M. Dornbusch, “Afterword,” in Development of Sex Differences, ed. by E. Maccoby (Stanford: Stanford University Press, 1966), 216; Judith Bardwick, Psychology of Women (New York: Harper & Row, 1971), 2–3; E. Maccoby and C. Jacklin, 3–8. Also, see Richard I. Evans, Konrad Lorenz: The Man and His Ideas (New York: Harcourt Brace Jovanovich, 1975), 4, 152–180.

9. Dietrich von Hildebrand, Man and Woman (Chicago: Henry Regnery, 1965), 13.

10. Edith Stein, The Writings of Edith Stein (London: Peter Owen, 1956), 142.

11. F. J. J. Buytendijk, Woman: A Contemporary View (New York: Newman Press, 1968), 140.

12. Ibid., 154.

13. Erik H. Erikson, Identity: Youth and Crises (New York: Norton, 1968), 28.

14. The female quality of emotional immediacy may have some relationship to what was described as her being “susceptible to spiritual influences” in an earlier chapter (in reference to Tm 2, see Chapter Eight, pp. 206208). In this usage, susceptibility does not mean greater perceptiveness or sensory intake, but instead the tendency of women to respond to social and spiritual situations in a more total, immediate, and personal fashion.

15. Bardwick, 100.

16. J. Guitton, Feminine Fulfillment (New York: Paulist, 1965), 3.

17. I. C. Castillejo, Knowing Woman (New York: Putnam and Sons, 1973), 14–15.

18. Stein, 161–162.

19. Karl Stern, The Flight from Woman (New York: Farrar, Straus & Giroux, 1965), 42.

20. Sherry B. Ortner, “Is Female to Male as Nature Is to Culture?” in Women, Culture and Society, ed. M. Rosaldo and L. Lamphere (Stanford: Stanford University Press, 1974), 67–68.

21. For a discussion of some other significant expressions of this difference, see Bardwick, 21–46, 70–82.

22. Buytendijk, 7.

23. Bardwick, 73.

24. Helene Deutsch, The Psychology of Women, vol. 11 (New York: Grune and Stratton, 1944), 77–78.

25. Margaret Mead, Male and Female (New York: Dell, 1949), 104–105.

26. Ibid., 229.

27. Buytendijk, 310–314.

28. Buytendijk is working with an ideal or pure type. In the realities of daily life, the distinction between “work” and “care” is not so absolute. “Work” is often directed to values, and “care” usually involves attention to goals and objectives. Nonetheless, the distinction between “work” and “care” is a valuable one. These terms do represent contrasting attitudes and orientations, and they express relevant categories for the study of men’s and women’s differences, as the experimental material presented later in this chapter will substantiate. The terms themselves, however, are potentially confusing, because much of what he describes as “care” often occurs in what would be considered “work” in most languages, and some of what he describes as “work” also overlaps with the common usage of the word “care.”

29. Ibid., 317.

30. Mead, 168, 230.

31. Buytendijk, 348.

32. Stein, 123.

33. Hildebrand, 63.

34. There are several helpful volumes available which survey the experimental evidence. In this chapter we have drawn our survey largely from: Bardwick; Julia Sherman, On the Psychology of Women (Springfield: Charles C. Thomas, 1971); Corinne Hutt, Males and Females (Ontario: Penguin, 1972); E. Maccoby, The Development of Sex Differences (Stanford: Stanford University Press, 1966); Maccoby/​Jacklin; R. Friedman and R. Richart (eds.), Sex Differences in Behavior (New York: Wiley, 1974).

35. The physicians and scientists of the Victorian era tended to greatly exaggerate the biological differences between men and women. For some examples, see Elaine and English Showalter, “Victorian Women and Menstruation,” in Victorian Studies 14, no. 1 (September 1970): 83–89; and Jill Conway, “Stereotypes of Femininity in a Theory of Sexual Evolution,” ibid., 47–62. They are, of course, used as a point of comparison in contemporary polemics to show that modern science, compared with Victorian opinions, shows differences between men and women to be insignificant.

36. See Chapter Seventeen, pp. 434437

37. For the narrow definition, see R. A. Hinde, Biological Bases of Human Social Behavior (New York: McGraw Hill, 1974); Maccoby/​Jacklin, 227; Maccoby, “Sex in the Social Order,” Science 182, no. 4111 (November 2, 1973): 470; and Evans, 35–36.

38. For the wider definition, see Hutt, 108–119, and Lionel Tiger, Men in Groups (New York: Vintage Books, 1969), 201–223. For Anthony Storr in Human Aggression (New York: Atheneum, 1968), aggression is required for “the achievement of dominance, the overcoming of obstacles, and the mastery of the external world,” though Storr does not explicitly define aggression in these terms (see introduction and p. 19).

39. For a review of the behavior customarily recognized by researchers as “aggressive,” see Maccoby/​Jacklin, 227–243.

40. Ibid., 230–233; Roberta M. Oetzel, “Annotated Bibliography,” in Maccoby, The Development of Sex Differences, 323–326.

41. Lionel Tiger and Robin Fox, The Imperial Animal (New York: Holt, Rinehart & Winston, 1971), 213–216; Kenneth Moyer, “Sex Differences in Aggression,” in Friedman/​Richart, 335–339; Hutt, 108.

42. See Money/​Ehrhardt, 99, for a solid argument for a positive relationship between dominance and aggression in male and female behavior.

43. Maccoby/​Jacklin, 247–254.

44. Ibid., 179–182.

45. Hinde, 164; Tiger/​Fox, 60–65. Also, see the discussion in Chapter Seventeen, pp. 437439.

46. Maccoby/​Jacklin, 214–220.

47. Money/​Ehrhardt, 98–103. This experiment was replicated and confirmed by Ehrhardt and Baker, “Fetal Androgens, Human Central Nervous Systems Differentiation, and Behavior Sex Differences,” in Friedman/​Richart, 33–50.

48. B. Whiting and C. Pope Edwards, “A Cross-Cultural Analysis of Sex Differences in the Behavior of Children Aged Three to Eleven,” Journal of Social Psychology 91, no. 2 (December 1973): 171–188.

49. Sherman, 38–40; Oetzel, 332–334.

50. Maccoby/​Jacklin, 188.

51. Ibid., 172–182.

52. Oetzel, 334–338.

53. Maccoby/​Jacklin, 75–85.

54. Ibid., 91–98.

55. Hutt, 92.

56. Sherman, 23.

57. Sherman, 8–9; Frank Wesley and Elaine Wesley, Sex-Role Psychology (New York: Human Sciences Press, 1977), 39–40.

58. David A. Hamburg and Donald T. Lunde, “Sex Hormones in the Development of Sex Differences in Human Behavior,” in Maccoby, The Development of Sex Differences, 19; Wesley/​Wesley, 36–38.

59. Hutt, 79–81; Wesley/​Wesley, 39–40.

60. Bardwick, 26–33; Harold Persky, “Reproductive Hormones, Moods, and the Menstrual Cycle,” in Friedman/​Richart, 455–476. Pierre L. van den Berghe, Age and Sex in Human Societies: A Biosocial Perspective (Belmont, California: Wadsworth, 1973), 50.

61. Sherman, 9; Beatrix Hamburg, “The Psychology of Sex Differences: An Evolutionary Perspective,” in Friedman/​Richart, 386–389; Wesley/​Wesley, 41.

62. Sherman, 8; Wesley/​Wesley, 40–41.

63. Sherman, 8.

64. Wesley and Wesley also review the research methods used to study the causality of sex differences, 17–21. They examine four methods: cross-sectional, longitudinal, cross-cultural, and cross-species studies.

65. Anneliese F. Korner, “Methodological Considerations in Studying Sex Differences in the Behavioral Functioning of Newborns,” in Friedman/​Richart, 197–206; Bardwick, 90–92.

66. B. Whiting and C. Pope Edwards, 171–188.

67. J. Kagan and N. Kogan, “Individuality and Cognitive Performance,” in P. H. Mussen (ed.), Carmichael’s Manual of Child Psychology (New York: Wiley, 1970), 1337–1340.

68. B. Whiting and C. Pope Edwards, 171–188.

69. These conclusions apparently contrast with those found in one of Mead’s earlier works, Sex and Temperament, first published in 1935. The apparent conflict between Sex and Temperament and Male and Female becomes most evident when Mead discusses nurturance and aggression. The following passages are found in Sex and Temperament (New York: William Morrow, 1963):

We have assumed that because it is convenient for a mother to care for her child, this is a trait with which women have been more generously endowed by a carefully teleological process of evolution. We have assumed that because men have hunted, an activity requiring enterprise, bravery, and initiative, they have been endowed with these useful attitudes as part of their sex temperament. . . . If a society insists that warfare is the major occupation for the male sex, it is therefore insisting that all male children display bravery and pugnacity . . . (286)

If those temperamental attitudes which we have traditionally regarded as feminine—such as passivity, responsiveness, and a willingness to cherish children—can so easily be set up as the masculine pattern in one tribe, and in another be outlawed for the majority of women as well as for the majority of men, we no longer have any basis for regarding such aspects of behavior as sex-linked. (279–280)

Mead takes a different stance regarding nurturance and aggression in Male and Female:

It is probable, however, that the young male has a biologically given need to prove himself as a physical individual, and that in the past the hunt and warfare have provided the most common means of such validation. . . . At this point in history, young males are in a particularly difficult spot, threatened with a worldwide catastrophe which no individual heroism can prevent and without new means to exercise their biologically given aggressive protectiveness or desire for individual bravery. (31)

Women may be said to be mothers unless they are taught to deny their child-bearing qualities. Society must distort their sense of themselves, pervert their inherent growth-patterns, and perpetrate a series of learning-outrages upon them, before they will cease to want to provide, at least for a few years, for the child they have already nourished for nine months within the safe circle of their own bodies. (197)

Mead thus evaluates the data on nurturance and aggression differently in these two books. These two areas of difference represent a wider difference in tone and approach between Sex and Temperament and Male and Female.

On several occasions, Mead has publicly claimed that these two volumes are not contradictory. She has done so mainly by asserting that Sex and Temperament was widely misunderstood. She never intended to attack the existence of biological differences between men and women. This is the burden of the following quotes:

Nowhere do I suggest that I have found any material which disproves the existence of sex differences. . . . This study was not concerned with whether there are or are not actual and universal differences between the sexes, either quantitative or qualitative. (Goldberg, 44)

This is my most misunderstood book. . . . I have been accused of having believed when I wrote Sex and Temperament that there are no sex differences . . . (Preface to the 1950 edition of Sex and Temperament)

Though Mead’s intentions in these two books may not have been strictly contradictory it is clear that the books were written in such a way as to readily invite such criticism. (For further comments from Mead, see Blackberry Winter, 221–222.) Nonetheless, we can at least take Male and Female as the book which Mead in her mature judgment would see as most accurately reflecting her views on sex differences.

Further, Mead did not even think of Sex and Temperament as being primarily concerned with the differences between men and women. Male and Female, however, is about sex differences:

I went into the field, in 1931, to study one problem, the “conditioning of the social personalities of the two sexes.” I hoped that such an investigation would throw light on sex difference. I found, after two years’ work, that the material which I had gathered threw more light on temperamental differences, i.e., differences among innate individual endowments, irrespective of sex. . . . But when this book came out and often since, oftenest perhaps since I published Male and Female (in which I did discuss sex differences), I have been accused of having believed when I wrote Sex and Temperament that there are no sex differences . . . (Preface to the 1950 edition of Sex and Temperament)

Therefore, according to Mead’s own testimony regarding her intentions, we are justified in assigning special prominence to Male and Female in the context of the present chapter which is discussing the evidence concerning the differences between men and women.

70. Hamburg and Lunde, 12–15; Charles H. Phoenix, “Prenatal Testosterone in the Nonhuman Primate and Its Consequences for Behavior,” in Friedman/​Richart, 19–32.

71. For a brief discussion of imprinting and its application to human behavior, see van den Berghe, 27, 34; Money/​Ehrhardt, 177–178; and Evans, 12–16.

72. Gene P. Sackett, “Sex Difference in Rhesus Monkeys Following Varied Rearing Experiences,” in Friedman/​Richart, 99–122; Leonard A. Rosenblum, “Sex Differences in Mother-Infant Attachment in Monkeys,” ibid., 123–142.

73. Money/​Ehrhardt, 96–103.

74. Money’s results do not say anything about girls who are not affected by the Adrenogenital Syndrome who display tomboyish behavior. It would go beyond his data to conclude that such girls suffer from some type of hormonal imbalance.

75. Reports on these other longitudinal studies are found in Money/​Ehrhardt, 117–125, 151–160. Money’s emphasis here on the learning process in the formation of gender identify has not gone uncriticized, see, for example, B. G. Rosenberg and Brian Sutton-Smith, Sex and Identity (New York: Holt, Rinehart & Winston, 1972), 35–36; and Hutt, 69–75.

76. Persky, 455–476; Bardwick, 26–33; van den Berghe, 50.

77. Bardwick, 33–39.

78. Wayne Sage, “The Split Brain Lab,” Human Behavior, June 1976, 25–28; Craig Buck, “Knowing the Left from the Right,” ibid., 29–34; Maccoby/​Jacklin, 125–127; Hamburg, 386–389.

79. Erik Erikson has taken a psychoanalytic approach to the difference between men and women. Erikson observed children setting up human scenes with toys and found that boys preferred to set up outdoor scenes with much action, whereas girls preferred indoor scenes with toy characters in more stationary positions. Erikson then hypothesized that the male preference for external space and action relates to the external location of the male genitals, and the female preference for internal space relates to the internal location of female genitals (268–286). Bardwick supports this hypothesis (see 15).

80. Bardwick is critical of traditional psychoanalytic explanations of the differences between men and women, 5–20. However, she insists on the importance of the female reproductive system in forming and expressing female identity, 70–82, and she makes considerable use of Erik Erikson’s work.

81. Bruno Bettelheim, Symbolic Wounds (New York: The Free Press, 1954); Mead, Male and Female; Karen Horney, Feminine Psychology (New York: W. W. Norton, 1967), 60–62.

82. Another method is the heritability study. See Maccoby/​Jacklin, 120–122, for the application of this method to the area of visual-spatial ability. The method is so far of minor importance compared to the other six, and hence had not been treated in the text.

83. Sherman, 13; Maccoby/​Jacklin, 3–6.

84. Maccoby/​Jacklin, 166.

Chapter 17

Men’s and Women’s Differences  ▷  Social Structural Characteristics

1. For a description of the mentality of primitive societies, see C. Levi-Strauss, The Savage Mind (Chicago: Chicago University Press, 1969).

2. On the variety of family systems found in human societies, see Robin Fox, Kinship and Marriage (London: Penguin, 1967), esp. 33–53.

3. Margaret Mead notes the variety of possible activity assignments in Male and Female, 168.

4. R. G. D’Andrade, “Sex Differences and Cultural Institutions,” in Maccoby, The Development of Sex Differences. Also, see G. Murdock, Social Structure (New York: Macmillan, 1949), 7, 213; and van den Berghe, 52–56.

5. See E. E. Evans-Pritchard, The Position of Women in Primitive Societies and Other Essays in Social Anthropology (London: Faber & Faber, 1965), 49; Mead, Male and Female, 190–199; Michelle Rosaldo, “A Theoretical Overview,” in Rosaldo/​Lamphere, 23–24.

6. Rosaldo, 23.

7. For a discussion of the existence of universal female subordination, see D’Andrade, 188–191; Evans-Pritchard, 49–51; S. Goldberg, The Inevitability of Patriarchy (New York: William Morrow, 1974), 30–33, 39–44; R. Fox, 31–32.

8. Ortner, in Rosaldo/​Lamphere, 70.

9. Goldberg, 31–32.

10. Pierre van den Berghe, 59–60. On differences in character traits, see Ortner, in Rosaldo/​Lamphere, 81–82.

11. For a description of the Chinese approach to dress, see R. Sidel, Women and Child Care in China (New York: Hill & Wang, 1972), 39–40.

12. Rosaldo/​Lamphere, 3; van den Berghe, 53.

13. Joan Bamberger, “The Myth of Matriarchy: Why Men Rule in Primitive Society,” in Rosaldo/​Lamphere, 263–280. Also, see B. Yorburg, Sexual Identity (New York: John Wiley & Sons, 1974), 11.

14. Fox, 112–114.

15. On matrilineality, see L. Lamphere, “Women in Domestic Groups,” in Rosaldo/​Lamphere, 106–109; and Fox, 97–131.

16. See Fox, 111–114.

17. For helpful research on economic systems and men’s and women’s roles, see Peggy R. Sanday, “Female Status in the Public Domain,” in Rosaldo/​Lamphere, 194–200; Bette S. Denich, “Sex and Power in the Balkans,” in Rosaldo/​Lamphere, 244–260; Murdock, 137, 206; D’Andrade, 181–184, 189–190.

18. Agriculture and horticulture are closely related forms of subsistence, but they can influence social structure in very different ways. In an article entitled “Sex and Power in the Balkans” (in Rosaldo/​Lamphere), Bette S. Denich discusses these two sets of economic activities and their impact on men’s and women’s roles:

Worldwide cross-cultural correlations demonstrate that the nature of basic subsistence activity and the sexual division of labor act together in demarcating strategic advantages for local group formation, tending to favor those forms that keep together the sex responsible for the most crucial tasks. Thus, nearly all matrilocal, matrilineal societies are found among horticulturists, where women are gardeners, and it is advantageous to maintain groups of kinswomen as the basic work force. In contrast, both pastoralism and agriculture assign the primary herding and plowing tasks to men. The predominance of patrilocal residence among surviving pastoral and agricultural societies attests to the ecological adaptiveness of arrangements that keep together male kinsmen, maintaining continuity in their attachment to workmates and property. (244–245)

19. See Sanday for a useful treatment of this issue, 194–197.

20. On economics and male absenteeism, see Sanday, ibid.

21. On war and male absenteeism, see Sanday, ibid.

22. On social disintegration and male absenteeism, see Daniel Patrick Moynihan, The Negro Family: The Case for National Action (Washington, DC: Department of Labor, 1965); Carol B. Stack, “Sex Roles and Survival Strategies in an Urban Black Community,” in Rosaldo/​Lamphere, 113–128; N. Tanner, in Rosaldo/​Lamphere, 150–154.

23. For a discussion of roles among the Eskimos, see Lamphere, 103–104, 111–112. Also, see Goldberg’s discussion of the Pygmies, 120–121.

24. For further discussion of technological society, see Chapter Eighteen.

25. Rosaldo, in Rosaldo/​Lamphere, 17–42.

26. For a picture of the relationship between public and private spheres in Victorian society, see Judith Blake, “The Changing Status of Women in Developed Countries,” Scientific American 231, no. 3 (September 1974): 137–139; Christopher Lasch, “What the Doctor Ordered,” New York Review of Books, December 11, 1975, 50–54.

27. For a helpful statement of the relation of ideology and family, see William J. Goode, World Revolution and Family Patterns (Glencoe: Free Press, 1963), 20–22, 369; and van den Berghe, 107.

28. For a discussion of men’s and women’s roles in the Soviet Union, see H. K. Geiger, The Family in Soviet Russia (Cambridge: Harvard University Press, 1968), 184–185, 225–230; in China, Sidel, 21–43, and C. K. Yang, The Chinese Family in the Communist Revolution (Cambridge: MIT Press, 1959), 105–136; in the Kibbutzim, see L. Tiger and J. Shepher, Women in the Kibbutz (New York: Harcourt Brace Jovanovich, 1975).

29. Tiger/​Shepher, 26–33.

30. For division of labor, see ibid., 75–117; for overall male authority, 118–158; for women in childcare, 225–229.

31. Ibid., 272.

32. Ortner, 67–68.

33. For summaries of the research, see Corrine Hutt, 123–131; Maccoby/​Jacklin, 207–211, 225–226, 254–260; Tiger/​Fox, 102–107; Tiger/​Shepher, 147–158, 278.

34. For summaries of the research, see Hutt, 123–131; Maccoby/​Jacklin, 265–274; Mead, Male and Female, 196–199, 230; Tiger/​Fox, 60–68; Tiger/​Shepher, 272–275.

35. See L. Tiger, Men in Groups (New York: Vintage Books, 1969), 199–244; Money/​Ehrhardt, 10, 103; and Maccoby/​Jacklin, 254–265.

36. Though their book can prove very useful as a thorough summary of the experimental research on the differences between men and women, and though their comments on the gathered body of data can be perceptive and illuminating, Maccoby and Jacklin’s work can also convey an inaccurate impression of the literature they survey. The book’s general approach is to examine those areas which have been assumed in the past to demonstrate a difference between men and women, point out the inadequacy of past formulations, offer a more subtle understanding of the available data, and then conclude, leaving the impression that no significant differences between men and women exist in most of the areas. In fact, the social structural differences which Maccoby and Jacklin observe may be more significant and full of implications than those differences which they initially critique, though the authors seem genuinely unaware of the potential importance of their new interpretations. This procedure is carried out when studying compliance (265–268), dominance (254–262), affiliation (207–211, 225–226), activity rates (176–177), achievement orientation (135–138), and task and person orientation (146–147). Though Maccoby and Jacklin’s volume is generally an excellent piece of scholarship, in this area their feminist viewpoint may influence their manner of presentation so that they either fail to see the implications of their evidence, or else fail to communicate them, explicitly and clearly. For additional discussion, see the Note on Method on social science following the present chapter.

37. Maccoby/​Jacklin, 191–214.

38. Ibid., 227–242.

39. Ibid., compliance: 265–268; dominance: 254–262; affiliation: 207–211, 225–226; activity rates: 176–177; achievement orientation and competition: 135–138; task and person orientation: 146–147.

40. For a brief discussion of the relationship between ethology and social anthropology, see Michael R. A. Chance and Clifford J. Jolly, Social Groups of Monkeys, Apes and Men (New York: Dutton, 1970), 16–17.

41. For a presentation of the variety in the ethological data, see Hinde, 342–348. Hinde points out that variety exists not only among different species, but also within a species. Factors in an animal group’s ecology appear to affect the social structure of the group even as they also affect the social structure of human groups.

42. For studies of the male role, see Hinde, 350–353; Chance/​Jolly, 154, 173–191, 208; P. van den Berghe, 30–32; Tiger/​Fox, 31–32; and Storr, 59–60.

43. For studies of male and female peer groups, see Hinde, 382; Tiger, 25–53; Hutt, 128; and Chance/​Jolly, 146–147, 157–161.

44. For studies of male dominance hierarchies, see Tiger, 25–53; Hinde, 339–354; Maccoby/​Jacklin, 255–257.

45. Also see Chapter Sixteen, p. 405. Though there may be isolated cases of mammalian species which include a strong paternal role (e.g., the African lion, see George B. Schaller, The Serengeti Lion [Chicago: University of Chicago Press, 1972]), and though males in a few isolated primate species display paternal behavior (see Gary Mitchell and Edna M. Brandt, “Paternal Behavior in Primates,” in Primate Socialization, ed. Frank E. Poirier [New York, Random House, 1972], 173–206), the nearly universal mammalian pattern involves a much higher degree of female attention to infants. See van den Berghe, 9, 27; Chance/​Jolly, 114–122, 142–143 (maternal behavior); ibid., 125–127 (paternal behavior).

46. For studies of differential maternal responses, see Maccoby/​Jacklin, 312–313.

47. See footnote on p. 412 in Chapter Sixteen on human and non-human animal analogies. Arguments about evolutionary theory are common in some Christian and academic circles. Chapters Sixteen and Seventeen of this book attempt to proceed without assuming either side of the argument.

48. For example, see Karen Horney, 60–62; G. Gilder, Sexual Suicide (New York: Quadrangle Books, 1973), 14–21. Gilder, though not himself a psychoanalyst, relies strongly on a psychoanalytic approach.

49. See footnote on pp. 416416 in Chapter Sixteen on psychoanalysis and a biological explanation of the differences between men and women.

50. See Rosaldo, and, for a similar position, see Peter Swerdloff, Men and Women (New York: Time-Life Books, 1975).

51. An example of this sort of radical feminist “anthropology” can be found in Roxanne Dunbar, “Female Liberation as the Basis for Social Revolution,” in Sisterhood Is Powerful, ed. Robin Morgan (New York: Random, 1970), 477–492.

52. For a good presentation of these Gestalt principles, see D. Katz, Gestalt Psychology (New York: The Ronald Press, 1950), 18–48, 91–94, 160–165; H. Helson, “The Psychology of ‘Gestalt,’” The American Journal of Psychology 36, no. 3 (July 1925): 342–350.

53. For an introductory discussion of structuralism, see Michael Lane, Structuralism: A Reader (London: Jonathan Cape, 1970); and J. Ehrmann, Structuralism (Garden City: Anchor, 1970).

54. N. Chomsky, Aspects of the Theory of Syntax (Cambridge: MIT Press, 1965), 47–59.

55. Tiger/​Fox, 16.

56. Ibid., 58–59; also, see van den Berghe, 114–117.

57. Ibid., 59.

58. Tiger, 145. Chance and Jolly support Tiger on this particular question, 206–207.

59. Tiger/​Fox, 58–84; Chance/​Jolly, 142–147.

60. Maccoby/​Jacklin, 191–214.

61. Ibid., 207–211, 225–226, 254–260; Hutt, 123–131; and also note 39 above.

62. Hamburg, 374–375.

63. Chomsky, 47–59.

64. The ecological principle also applies to culture. The importance of this application becomes apparent when considering the changes brought about in primitive and traditional societies through the introduction of Western technology and culture. For an overview of this set of concerns, see Margaret Mead (ed.), Cultural Patterns and Technical Change (New York: Mentor, 1955); and Peter Berger et al., The Homeless Mind (New York: Random House, 1973). See also Lutzbetak’s useful treatment where he cautions the missionary about making hasty changes in various cultural patterns (9), and explains the importance of the “structural integration” of cultures (135–154).

65. For some similar views, see Gilder, 240–250, and Armand M. Nicholi II, “The Fractured Family: Following It into the Future,” Christianity Today, May 25, 1979, 12.

66. For some similar views, see Harold M. Voth, MD, The Castrated Family (Kansas City: Sheed Andrews & McMeel), 1–6, 212–213; and Gilder, 104–108. Margaret Mead also emphasizes the tenuousness of the male paternal role in contrast to the female maternal role in a chapter in Male and Female entitled “Human Fatherhood Is a Social Invention,” 190–205.

67. Nicholi and Voth are very insistent about the weakening of the modern family and its consequences for the children produced. Voth places special emphasis on the breakdown of men’s and women’s roles and its contribution to the weakening of the family and its children.

68. See Gilder, 22–23; Tiger/​Shepher, 241; and Virginia O. Abernethy, “Dominance and Sexual Behavior: A Hypothesis,” American Journal of Psychiatry 131, no. 7 (July 1974): 813–817.

69. All problems with impotency in men and frigidity in women are not to be attributed to the breakdown of men’s and women’s roles. This is not the argument here. The intention of this point is merely to assert the likelihood of some connection between a breakdown in men’s and women’s roles and problems in sexual functioning.

70. See Gilder, 226–228; Nicholi, 14; and Voth, 1–3, 6, 217–219,

71. See Mead, Male and Female, 110; and Storr, 63.

72. See Voth, 4, 214–216; Nicholi, 12; and Lasch, Haven in a Heartless World (New York: Basic Books, 1977), 167–189.

73. See Patricia Cayo Sexton, The Feminized Male (New York: Vintage, 1969), 12–22, 29–39; and Gilder, 226–237.

74. For some studies indicating this, see Natalie Gittelson, Dominus: A Woman Looks at Men’s Lives (New York: Farrar, Strauss & Co., 1978); and Caroline Bird, “The Best Years of a Woman’s Life,” Psychology Today 13, no. 1 (June 1979), for a review of some recent mental health studies that indicates a serious decline in the mental health of younger women in the US.

75. Barbara Seaman, “Image Breakers,” The Ann Arbor News, August 1, 1978, p. B-1.

76. The failure of feminists to lay out a positive social program is scathingly described by Gilder, 7, who states: “The liberationists have no idea where their program would take us. The movement is counseling us to walk off a cliff, in the evident wish that our society can be kept afloat on feminist hot air.”

77. Mead, Male and Female, 40.

78. Though van den Berghe is sympathetic with the feminist position, he is still able to see the crucial question:

What is at stake is not the feasibility of reversing or neutralizing these predispositions, but rather the social cost of fighting instead of going along with physiology. The empirical rarity of such learned reversals and the virtual absence of sexual undifferentiation suggest that the cost would be high, or that the cost would not be commensurate with the gain, which amounts to the same thing. (48, emphasis added)

Note on Method  ▷  Social Science

1. The psychological survey approach is taken in Bardwick, Hutt, Maccoby/​Jacklin, and Sherman.

2. The most common type of interdisciplinary survey of men’s and women’s differences is the scientific anthology (for an example, see E. Maccoby, The Development of Sex Differences). However, there have been more homogenous interdisciplinary works, such as van den Berghe, Age and Sex in Human Societies: A Biosocial Perspective, and Carol Tavris and Carole Offir, The Longest War (New York: Harcourt Brace Jovanovich, 1977).

3. Kuhn’s discussion of paradigms has some bearing on the present topic of conceptual frameworks in science, see Thomas S. Kuhn, The Structure of Scientific Revolutions (Chicago: University of Chicago Press, 1962), 10–42.

4. Maccoby and Jacklin organize their study around the distinction between intellectual abilities and social behavior.

5. For several different perspectives on the history of the nature/​nurture controversy, see Theodosius Dobzhansky, Mankind Evolving (New York: Bantam Books, 1962), 53–78; Tiger, 3–24; van den Berghe, 1–5; and Jessie Bernard, Women, Wives, Mothers (Chicago: Aldine, 1975), 5–29.

6. Friedan’s critiques are found in The Feminine Mystique (New York: Dell, 1963), 95–141.

7. For example, modern “biodeterminism” is a major point of controversy in Barbara Lloyd and John Archer, Exploring Sex Differences (New York: Academic Press, 1976).

8. Steven Goldberg, The Inevitability of Patriarchy (New York: William Morrow, 1974).

9. See Bardwick, Hutt, Tiger, and Erikson.

10. Friedman/​Richart, Sex Differences in Behavior (New York: Wiley, 1974).

11. See Maccoby, Money, P. van den Berghe, and Ehrhardt.

12. See Sandra Bem, “Androgyny vs. the Tight Little Lives of Fluffy Women and Chesty Men,” Psychology Today 9, no. 4 (September 1975): 61–64; Janet Chafetz, Masculine/​Feminine or Human? (Ithaca: F. E. Peacock, 1974); Betty Yorburg; Tavris/Offir; Lloyd/​Archer.

13. Connie Bruck, “Professing Androgyny,” Human Behavior, October 1977, 24.

14. Chafetz, 4.

15. One good example of the methodological critique can be found in Barbara Lloyd, “Social Responsibility and Research on Sex Differences,” in Lloyd/​Archer, 6–10.

16. Bernard, 5.

17. Lloyd, 16.

18. Tavris/​Offir, 99.

19. Nancy Chodorow, “Family Structure and Feminine Personality,” in Rosaldo/​Lamphere, 43.

20. For selective use of Money, see Yorburg. Money himself notices this tendency among his interpreters, Money/​Ehrhardt, xi.

21. This clouding of the evidence occurs in Tavris/Offir, and Paul C. Rosenblatt and Michael R. Cunningham, “Sex Differences in Cross-Cultural Perspective,” in Lloyd/​Archer, 71–94.

22. This problem with arrangement of data is especially evident in Tavris/​Offir.

23. Phyllis Chesler, “Men Drive Women Crazy,” Psychology Today (July, 1971), 18, 22.

24. Bem, 61.

25. Ibid., 64.

26. See, for example, “Opting for Androgyny,” Human Behavior, November 1978, 51, for a critique of Bem based on further research utilizing her model.

27. Ortner, 67–70.

28. John Archer, “Biological Explanations of Psychological Sex Differences,” in Lloyd/​Archer, 260.

29. Lloyd, 13.

30. Bardwick, 3.

31. In the last paragraph of her article, Lloyd in fact recognizes that Bardwick is not a “biodeterminist”: “Bardwick, Hutt, and others who acknowledge the interactive nature of social and biological variables yet nonetheless stress the latter in order to right what they see as an imbalance, fail to appreciate the danger of their approach” (19). However, Lloyd has already labeled both Bardwick and Hutt and “biodeterminists” in a polemical attempt to discredit their work as extreme.

32. Rosenblatt/​Cunningham, 72, 89.

Chapter 18

The New Social Environment  ▷  Technological Society

1. The change in human society that occurred among some peoples in the third millennium BC could be seen as the first significant shift from primitive to traditional society. This shift was characterized by such things as the first growth of cities, the development of political kingdoms, and the invention of writing, and appears to have occurred first among societies of the Middle East, especially those in Egypt and Mesopotamia. For a similar historical perspective on these three periods of history and the radical changes involved in the transition from one period to another, see Kenneth Boulding, The Meaning of the Twentieth Century (New York: Harper & Row, 1964), 1–26. For further use of the terms “primitive society,” “traditional society,” and “technological society,” see p. 480.

2. For a simple discussion of the issue of escalating change and its possible outcome, see Paul E. Lutz, “The Environmental Crises: Business as Usual?” Division of Theological Studies, Lutheran Council in USA, 1975. The Club of Rome report, published in Dennis L. Meadows et al., The Limits to Growth (New York: Universe Books, 1972), has perhaps been the most successful in popularizing this concern.

3. Peter Laslett, The World We Have Lost (London: Methuen, 1965), 233, emphasis in original.

4. The following books are helpful in understanding both the historical development of technological society and its many unique characteristics: Raymond Aron, Progress and Disillusion (New York: Praeger, 1968); Peter L. Berger, Facing Up to Modernity (New York: Basic Books, 1977); Peter Berger et al., The Homeless Mind; Jacques Ellul, The Technological Society (New York: Knopf, 1973); Lasch, “The Family and History,” New York Review of Books, November 13, 1975, 33–38; Peter Laslett; Marion J. Levy Jr., Modernization: Latecomers and Survivors (New York: Basic Books, 1972); Herbert J. Muller, The Children of Frankenstein (Bloomington: Indiana University Press, 1970); Robert A. Nisbet, The Quest for Community (New York: Oxford University Press, 1969); and Edward Shorter, The Making of the Modern Family (New York: Basic Books, 1975).

5. On some of the differences between primitive and traditional societies, see note 1, above.

6. For a perspective on how different societies are affected by “modernization” in our area of concern, see William G. Goode, World Revolution and Family Patterns, and Pierre L. van den Berghe, Age and Sex in Human Societies: A Biosocial Perspective (Belmont, California: Wadsworth, 1973), 97–98.

7. There were other aspects of Western European society of the seventeenth and eighteenth centuries that could be considered advance developments toward technological society. Order, efficiency, regimentation, and mass numbers were becoming important values in the military sectors of society. One popular history which alludes to these new values is E. J. Hughes, The Church and Liberal Society (Princeton: Princeton University Press, 1944). The ideal of the conjugal family had begun to spread among a broad cross-section of the bourgeoisie (tracing the development and varied manifestations of this ideal is one of the central purposes of Philippe Ariès, Centuries of Childhood [London: Jonathan Cape, 1962]). Also, an ideal of individualism became current. This ideal focused on the individual man (not the individual woman or child) and on his freedom to act independent of the restrictions of others (a concise but clear description of the development of this ideal is found in Lionel Trilling, Sincerity and Authenticity [Cambridge: Harvard University Press, 1971]). In addition, the emergence of the Western nation-state foreshadowed and contributed to the development of technological society. The nation-state was closely associated with bureaucratic government, an organized military corps, and rapid economic expansion. Crane Brinton is one among many historians who have noted this association, see The Shaping of Modern Thought (Englewood Cliffs: Prentice-Hall, 1950), esp. 45–49, 144–148. Some of the basic features of technological society were thus already emerging in seventeenth- and eighteenth-century Western Europe. For two further helpful discussions of these types of issues, see Marc Bloch, Feudal Society (Chicago: University of Chicago Press, 1961), 137–142; and Goode, 23–33, 370.

8. Accounts of the development of technological society can be found in a variety of places. Two useful summary accounts can be found in David Reisman et al., The Lonely Crowd (Garden City: Doubleday, 1950), and in Ellul.

9. Goode, 1, exemplifies the modern recognition of the emergence of a global technological society.

10. The distinction made in this chapter between relational and functional groupings is similar in many ways to distinctions found in some of the classic writings of sociology. Tönnies’s description of the difference between community (gemeinschaft) and society (gesellschaft) has been perhaps the most influential, but Weber’s discussion of traditional and rational groupings and Sorokin’s discussion of familistic and contractual relationships have also been of great importance. For a brief survey and comparison of these three classic sociological “types,” see Community and Society (Gemeinschaft und Gesellschaft), Ferdinand Tönnies, trans. and ed. Charles P. Loomis (East Lansing: Michigan State University Press, 1957), 12–29.

11. The term “functional” as used in this chapter is similar to Ellul’s “technique.” Ellul uses the term “technique” to describe a systematically organized procedure for efficiently accomplishing some end. He sees modern society as the place where technique dominates all human activities and interactions. Though extremely similar, these two terms differ in one significant way. Whereas “technique” can refer to all ordered goal-directed behavior, the “functional principle” applies specifically to a task-efficiency orientation. This narrower term allows for discussion of “relationship value” as found among relational groupings without confusing this quality with the “task efficiency” concern found in functional groupings.

12. Among those who note the contrast between functional and relational groupings are Levy, 121–126, and Fox, 13–15. Terminology in this area varies, but the basic referents are the same.

13. The distinction between purposive, goal-oriented activities and expressive activities used here has parallels in the work of Talcott Parsons. He chooses the terms “instrumental” and “expressive” to capture the distinction. See, for example, The Social System (New York: The Free Press, 1951), 49, 79–88, 100, 384–407; and Toward a General Theory of Action, ed. Talcott Parsons and Edward Shils (New York: Harper & Row, 1951, 1962), 8, 149, 165–167. For a brief discussion of some aspects of the division of instrumental and expressive spheres in modern society, see Levy, The Structure of Society (Princeton: Princeton University Press, 1952), 528–541.

14. For the classic presentation on bureaucracy and impersonality, see Max Weber, On Charisma and Institution Building (Chicago: University of Chicago Press, 1968), 38, 66–77. Further development of this analysis in sociology is popular, as seen in such books as Victor Thompson, Modern Organization (New York: Alfred A. Knopf, 1963), 10–24; and Berger et al., 41–62. A helpful discussion of the relationship between bureaucracy and technological approaches is found in Berger et al., 41–62, esp. 41–43.

15. Goode articulates clearly some aspects of the functional approach and the concern for task competency, see The Family (Englewood Cliffs: Prentice-Hall, 1964), 108; and World Revolution, 11–12, 24.

16. It is generally agreed that the division between public and private spheres is particularly marked in technological society. For examples of various viewpoints on this modern division, see Ariès, 411–415; Berger et al., 28–30; Blake, 138; Lasch, “What the Doctor Ordered,” 51; P. Laslett, 1–21. Rosaldo’s theory concerning public and private spheres and men’s and women’s roles (see Chapter Seventeen, pp. 429430) is also worthy of consideration in this context.

17. Specialization and standardization are commonly associated with technological society. For a few examples of this association, see Thompson, 25–57; Berger et al., 63–68; Ellul, 11–12, 132, 211–215.

18. For an explicit statement on people in technological society as individual bearers of skills, see Goode, The Family, 108; and Goode, World Revolution, 11–12.

19. Some useful perspectives on this instability can be found in Richard M. Titmuss, Essays on “The Welfare State” (London: George Allen & Unwin, 1958), 111–112; Levy, 124–126; Laslett, 4–5.

20. M. F. Nimkoff, Comparative Family Systems (Boston: Houghton Mifflin, 1965), 34–35.

21. The pure or “ideal” type plays an important role in sociological theory and analysis. For examples of the pure type in early sociological work, see Weber, 47; and Thomas Burger, Max Weber’s Theory of Concept Formation (Durham: Duke University Press, 1976), 115–179.

22. The term “technological society,” whatever its origin, has probably obtained common usage mainly through Jacques Ellul’s book of the same name. “Post-industrial society” and “technocratic society’’ are common equivalents. “Technetronic society” is often used for more recent phases of “technological society.” There are also various uses of “modern society” which are close equivalents.

23. Among those who discuss perceptively some of the pre-technological manifestations of the functional approach are Hughes, 164; Weber, 37; and Ellul, 30–32, 43.

24. Goode especially discusses the “fit” between technological society and a type of life pattern. See The Family, 108–109; World Revolution, 369–370.

25. Many modern people recognize the development of the mass collective and its individualizing tendencies. For two examples of this recognition, see Philip E. Slater, The Pursuit of Loneliness (Boston: Beacon Press, 1970), 5–9; and Jacques Ellul, Propaganda (New York: Knopf, 1965), 90–99.

26. Goode and Ellul are especially alert to the tendency of technological society to eliminate nonfunctional groupings. See Goode, The Family, 108; and Ellul, Technological Society, 49–52.

27. Among those who express concern over the development of the mass collective, are Laslett, 18–19; Lasch, “The Emotions of Family Life,” New York Review of Books, November 27, 1975, 40; and Lasch, Haven in a Heartless World, 91, 189; Philip Slater, Earthwalk (Garden City: Doubleday, 1974), 55; Ellul, Technological Society, 49–52, 332–335; Nisbet, 98–120, 198–203; and Peter Berger’s essay “In Praise of Particularity: The Concept of Mediating Structures,” in Facing Up to Modernity, 130–141.

28. Ellul, Technological Society, 50–51.

29. For basic descriptions of governmental structures in traditional and technological society, see Levy, Modernization and the Structure of Societies, vol. 2 (Princeton: Princeton University Press, 1966), 454–471; Levy, Modernization: Latecomers and Survivors, 124–125; Ellul, Technological Society, 83, 255–267.

30. Ellul and Slater pay special attention to the question of “social control” in technological society. See Slater, Earthwalk, 55; Slater, The Pursuit of Loneliness, 89; Ellul, Propaganda; and Karl Mannheim, Man and Society (London: Routledge and Kegan Paul, 1940), 274–311. Mannheim uses the terms “direct” and “indirect” control.

31. A similar view is expressed by Christopher Lasch in Haven in a Heartless World. Lasch sees the demise of the “authoritarian family” as the doorway to greater political despotism rather than to greater individual liberty:

The gradual erosion of authoritarianism and the authoritarian family, which went on throughout the liberal phase of bourgeois society, has had an unexpected outcome: the reestablishment of political despotism in a form based not on the family but on its dissolution. Instead of liberating the individual from external coercion, the decay of family life subjects him to new forms of domination, while at the same time weakening his ability to resist them. (91)

32. A simple description of the general institutionalization of human services in technological society is found in Nimkoff, 352–354. Of particular interest regarding the study of the institutionalization of education are Ariès, 269–285, and John Bremer, The School without Walls (New York: Holt, Rinehart & Winston, 1971), 1–8.

33. The concepts of achieved and ascribed status are standard ones in sociology. For examples of their definition and use, see Parsons, 64–65, 180–200; Nisbet, The Social Bond (New York: Knopf, 1970), 156–158; Goode, World Revolution, 369–370.

34. Many sociological accounts note the prevalence in technological society of partial functionally-specific commitments. Two of the most helpful are S. N. Eisenstadt, Modernization: Protest and Change (Englewood Cliffs: Prentice-Hall, 1966), 21–25, 37; and Levy, The Structure of Society, 255–262.

35. For a brief but vivid description of the medieval guilds and their relational structure, see Ariès, 245–246.

36. See, for example, “Arranged Marriages,” by Carol Stocker, Detroit Free Press, March 20, 1977, pp. 1F, 12F.

37. In addition, technological society has also brought a functional approach to religion, as can be seen in the various cults of the 1970s. For a brief, helpful exploration of this trend, see James Manney, “The Consciousness Movement II: ‘Salvation’ through Techniques,” New Covenant 6, no. 10 (April 1977), 18–21.

38. The breakdown of kinship ties in technological society was an unquestioned sociological observation until recent years. For examples of traditional approaches, see E. W. Burgess, H. J. Locke and M. M. Thomas, The Family (New York: American Book Company, 1963), 18–20; Talcott Parsons and Robert F. Bales, Family, Socialization and Interaction Process (Glencoe: Free Press, 1955), 10–14; Paul E. Mott, The Organization of Society (Englewood Cliffs: Prentice-Hall, 1965), 163; and Clifford Kirkpatrick, The Family as Process and Institution (New York: The Ronald Press, 1955), 137. However, two new sources of data have recently called this observation into question. First, historical demographers have documented the relative absence of the extended family as a residential unit in the middle ages. Similar investigations of other cultures have shown the extended family residence to be a less frequent arrangement than was once thought. Secondly, certain sociological studies purport to demonstrate the enduring strength of extended kin ties in industrial societies. Upon further examination, each of these objections is seen to carry little weight. (1) Even given that the historical demographers have compiled accurate statistics, the new data need not call for a serious readjustment in the picture of the traditional extended family. Residential data is not the major index of level of commitment, support, resource sharing, and common life. All other evidence points to much higher levels in each of these areas for the traditional extended family relative to its technological counterpart. Some misleading images of traditional family life may be dismissed by the new demographic data, but the general assertion of greater kinship solidarity in traditional society vis-à-vis technological society remains valid. In addition, one should consider Goode’s helpful distinction between ideal and actual family models (see World Revolution, 7–10). In most traditional societies the extended kinship grouping is seen as the ideal residential unit, though lack of economic resources often prevents the majority from living in such a fashion. In modern technological society, on the other hand, the conjugal family of husband, wife, and children is the ideal residential unit, and even the wealthy usually maintain this pattern. Though the predominant residential unit in both types of societies may be the conjugal family, the existence of varying residential ideals has an impact on the quality of the extended kinship relationships. (2) The modern sociological studies on kinship networks in industrial societies also fail to seriously alter the picture of the relative isolation of the nuclear family in technological society. These studies tend to highlight the friendship relationships that sometimes exist among extended family members, and the continued prominence of family social gatherings of various sorts. A more important focus would be on questions of commitment, stability, resource sharing, and corporate identity. Also, these studies gain much of their effect from contrast with the supposedly nonexistent kinship relationships of technological society. Given that some form of extended kinship relationships still remains in modern technological society, one does not gain an accurate historical perspective unless the modern form is compared with the traditional form. Such a comparison once again supports the assertion that kinship ties tend to be severely weakened in technological society. For two helpful discussions of these recent questions, see Lasch, “The Family and History,” 34–36; and Goode, World Revolution, 70–76. For a good recent restatement of the traditional view of the breakdown of kinship ties and communal groupings, see Shorter, 3–4, 22–53.

39. For an extensive treatment of the internal changes in the conjugal family wrought within technological society, see Goode, World Revolution, 7–10, 27–86.

40. For more on emotional intensity in the technological family, see p. 506.

41. For examples of the traditional sociological statement on the loss of family functions, see Norman B. Ryder, “The Family in Developed Countries,” Scientific American, September 1974, 123; C. Christian Beels, “Whatever Happened to Father?” New York Times Magazine, August 25, 1974, 11, 52; and Nimkoff, 27–31, 362–365. Some sociologists take exception to this formulation, insisting that while some functions have been lost, others have been added or increased in importance. Such items as leisure functions, family planning functions, and “therapeutic” functions are offered as the additional roles brought to family life by technological society. For example, see F. Ivan Nye and Felix M. Bernardo, The Family: Its Structure and Interaction (New York: Macmillan, 1973), 247–248; and Nimkoff, 365–369. However, the significance of these added functions is questionable. A leisure function and a therapeutic function were also elements of the traditional family. Though leisure activities are corporately pursued by some modern families, in many other families these activities are the specialized realm of the peer groups of the various family members. This is increasingly the case as children in a family reach older ages. Though some modern families engage in family planning, it is still comparatively rare, and it is not clear that this added function contributes markedly to the commitment or solidarity of the family grouping. The “therapeutic” function of the modern family is certainly increased in importance by the pressures and demands of technological society, but it is of dubious value as a support for family life. Rather than constituting a helpful new family function, the heightened demand for emotional release, healing, and fulfillment within the conjugal family threatens to further weaken the family unit, for in most cases the family relationships are not capable of meeting the demand. Therefore, it seems clear that the functions lost by the family in technological society are far more significant than those gained, if in fact it is reasonable to say that any positive functions are gained.

The loss of family functions in technological society should be viewed against the background of the erosion of all relational groupings through a transfer of functions to mass institutions; see Nisbet, 52–62.

42. The isolation of the conjugal family as a modern social problem has received attention in many quarters. For some popular examples, see Urie Bronfenbrenner, Two Worlds of Childhood (New York: Russell Sage, 1970), 95–97; Lasch, “The Emotions of Family Life,” 40; “The Parent Gap,” Newsweek, September 22, 1975, 50, 56; Slater, The Pursuit of Loneliness, 6.

43. Useful observations on the burden of emotional support and the modern family are found in Goode, World Revolution, 12–14; Ryder, 127–130; and Shorter, 277–279.

44. Ryder, 127–128. See also Nisbet, 62, for a similar description.

45. Ryder, 130. Also see Goode, World Revolution, 34–35; Shorter, 270–276; and Lasch, 130.

46. Modern consciousness of the change in the paternal role is high, and is reflected in such popular presentations as Beels’s.

47. Judith Blake clearly describes the isolation and dependence of modern women, 138.

48. Some supportive statistics can be found in Titmuss, 91–102.

49. Ryder, 128. For other helpful discussions of role conflict in women, see Bardwick, 188–202, and Nisbet, 63–64.

50. For some supportive statistics on females unattached to families, see Blake, 139.

51. Ryder, 128.

52. This idea of traditional roles resulting in the isolation of the American housewife was a major thrust of Betty Friedan’s The Feminine Mystique (New York: W. W. Norton, 1963), which was an early and highly influential book in the feminist movement. See, for instance, 15–32.

53. A typical depiction is found in Sidel, 3–18. The Chinese Communists talk about pre-revolutionary life as “the bitter past.”

54. For one helpful examination of the status of women in modern society relative to traditional society, see Evans-Pritchard, 37–57.

55. For an example of this contrast, see Susan Lydon, “The Politics of Orgasm,” in Sisterhood Is Powerful, 201ff.

56. For a helpful study of the question of the elderly in technological society, see James Manney, Aging in American Society (Ann Arbor: The Institute of Gerontology, 1975), 6–10, 53–57. Problems faced by the elderly are more briefly treated by Ryder, 130; Slater, The Pursuit of Loneliness, 14–15; and Nisbet, 65–66.

57. For a few helpful studies on the problems faced by youth in technological society, see J. H. Plumb, “The Great Change in Children,” Horizon 13, no. 1 (Winter 1971): 6–12; Ariès, 269–285; and Bremer, 1–8.

58. See pp. 508509.

59. Nisbet also discusses the relationship between the following type of psychological problems and the new social circumstances of technological society, 14–19.

60. Studies of neurosis and psychosis in traditional societies are unavailable.

61. Peter Laslett alludes to the correlation between suicide and industrialization, 137–138.

Chapter 19

The New Intellectual Environment  ▷  Ideology and Christianity

1. Some of the meanings assigned to the term “ideology” are general while others are more specified and technical. Four of the more common meanings, ordered according to increasing levels of specificity, are as follows:

  1. In common usage, “ideology” can refer to any system of ideas, especially ideas related to some aspect of human life. According to this definition, psychoanalysis can be called an ideology, as can also Transcendental Meditation.
  2. In a political context, the term is frequently used as a way of describing theoretical systems which include definite sociopolitical programs and implications. This is the way that the term is often used by Communists (for one example, see V. I. Lenin in Carl Cohen, Communism, Fascism, and Democracy [New York: Random House, 1962], 212). Social scientists also sometimes use the term in this way (for an example, see Berger et al., 159).
  3. Sociologists often use “ideology” to refer to the sum of the fundamental beliefs, values, theories, and assumptions held by a social group. This definition allows the sociologist to focus upon the way individuals have their ideas and values conditioned by their social environment. One could thus speak of the Christian ideology of medieval Western Europe or the Islamic ideology of the Ottoman Empire.
  4. A fourth usage of “ideology” is in fact merely an elaboration of the third usage cited above. Some sociologists further refine the term by applying it only to bodies of thought and belief that justify an existing social system. Any popularly held set of beliefs, values, theories, and assumptions which does not buttress the existing social system is called by another term. In a classic sociological study, Karl Mannheim calls revolutionary systems of thought and belief “utopias” (Mannheim applies this new term to movements such as the sixteenth-century Anabaptists), see Mannheim, Ideology and Utopia (New York: Harcourt, Brace & World, 1936), 55–84.

The definition of “ideology” used in the present volume is primarily definition 2. However, the particular form of definition in the text places a focus upon ideology as a force conditioning the popular opinions and values of individuals within society and in this sense approximates some aspects of 3. The definition in the text is used because the primary concern in the chapter is with modern systems of thought which have affected the fundamental beliefs of modern social groupings, especially in their vision of how society should be structured.

2. Berger et al., 159.

3. As discussed above (n. 1), some sociologists distinguish between ideologies which justify an existing system and those which prepare the way for a new system. Such a distinction is not directly relevant to the purpose of this chapter.

4. William Goode gives helpful descriptions of the interconnection between social structures and modern ideologies in technological society, see his World Revolution and Family Patterns.

5. An example of a European Liberal Party is the Belgian Liberal Party.

6. As stated by Berger et al., “In the United States, liberalism as a political ideology has been a major representation of modernizing forces” (198). For a few helpful books on Liberalism, see Theodore Meyer Greene, Liberalism: Its Theory and Practice (Austin: University of Texas Press, 1957); Harold J. Laski, The Rise of European Liberalism (London: George Allen & Unwin, 1936); Louis Hartz, The Liberal Tradition in America (New York: Harcourt, Brace & Co., 1955).

7. John Stuart Mill, On Liberty (Boston: Ticknor & Fields, 1863), 23. Elsewhere in the same essay, Mill defines civil or social liberty as “the nature and limits of the power which can be legitimately exercised by society over the individual” (7).

8. For one description of the individualistic and anti-authoritarian tendencies of Liberalism, see Crane Brinton, The Shaping of Modern Thought (Englewood Cliffs: Prentice-Hall, 1950), 150–157.

9. Liberal theories of self-interest are usually associated with eighteenth-century economists such as Adam Smith or nineteenth-century social Darwinists such as Herbert Spencer.

10. An old, but useful, volume dealing with eighteenth- and nineteenth-century continental Liberalism is Guido De Ruggiero, The History of European Liberalism, trans. R. G. Collingwood (London: Oxford University Press, 1927).

11. See, for example, Brinton, 152–168.

12. The connection between Liberal ideology and the middle class was an essential aspect of the Marxist critique of Liberalism. This connection has also become an aspect of non-Marxist critiques. For a Catholic attack on Liberalism from this perspective, see Hughes, 23–24.

13. Philippe Ariès makes a similar observation about the Code Napoléon in “The Family, Prison of Love,” Psychology Today, August 1975, 53–58, esp. 57.

14. Not all nineteenth-century Liberals opposed the extension of “individual rights” to women. John Stuart Mill is one prominent exception as seen by his famous essay on The Subjection of Women. The birth of the feminist movement can be traced back to this period. Nonetheless, this was a minority opinion among Liberals of the mid-nineteenth century.

15. For a few different perspectives on the anti-Christian tendencies of French Revolution Liberalism, see R. R. Palmer and Joel Colton, A History of the Modern World (New York: Knopf, 1971), 388–392; Hughes, 124–127; Alexis de Tocqueville, The Old Regime and the French Revolution (1856; Garden City: Doubleday & Company, 1955), 148–157; Alec R. Vidler, The Church in an Age of Revolution (Baltimore: Penguin, 1961), 11–21.

16. See, for example, Tocqueville, Old Regime and the French Revolution, 153–154; Democracy in America, 287–301, 542–546; and Murray.

17. For helpful introductory works on Socialism, see G. Lichtheim, A Short History of Socialism (New York: Praeger, 1970); and G. D. H. Cole, A History of Socialist Thought, 4 vols. (London: Macmillan, 1953–1966).

18. The connection between Marxist Socialism and technological society has been noted by many who study the characteristics of modern society, including Jacques Ellul, The Technological Society, 81–82, 144; Goode, 24, 320; and Berger et al., 161–162, 171–174.

19. For an extensive study of collective and personal forms of social control, see Mannheim, 274–311.

20. Geiger has some useful observations on private life and state authority in the Soviet Union, see Geiger, 60–62, 329–330.

21. For some examples of how collective social control functions in Communist China and the Soviet Union through regulation and education, see Sidel, 111–154; and Geiger, 292–320.

22. For a brief description of the dialectical revolutionary strategy used initially in China, including mention of “consciousness raising,” see Sidel, 17–18.

23. Two firsthand accounts of the approach to lying and traditional morality in Communist strategy are V. I. Lenin in Cohen, 220–222; and Douglas Hyde, The Answer to Communism (London: Sands & Co., 1949), 21–35.

24. Berger et al. give an excellent description of the romantic reaction in its most recent forms, 181–184, 201–214. These authors view this reaction as one of the three most important ideological developments in modern society. They categorize these ideologies in the following manner:

There are three different types of ideological response to modernization. First, there are ideologies that directly endorse or legitimate modernization [e.g., Liberalism, Socialism]. Next, there are ideologies developed in opposition or resistance to modernization; these might be called counter modernization ideologies [or, as discussed here, the romantic reaction]. Third . . . there are ideologies that seek to control or contain modernization in the name of values that are conceived to be independent of that process. (159–160, brackets ours)

This third category, according to Berger et al., includes some forms of modern Islam and some forms of third-world Nationalism and Socialism.

25. For a general introductory work on Romanticism and the Romantic Movement, see Jacques Barzun, Romanticism and the Modern Ego (Boston: Little, Brown & Co., 1943). Barzun is partial toward the Romantic movement, and attempts to distinguish it clearly from such later phenomena as Fascism. Nonetheless, Fascism and Romanticism do share some significant features, though they are neither identical nor connected to one another in a direct cause-and-effect relationship.

26. See Berger et al., 201–214, for a similar approach to these varied phenomena.

27.The antagonism to institutions logically extends to institutional roles on the level of everyday life. To play a role is, ipso facto, to engage in hypocrisy. The real self (that spontaneous, un-“repressed,” to-be-intuited entity) is presumed to lie beneath or beyond all roles, which are masks, camouflage, obstacles to the discovery of the real self.” Berger et al., 213.

28. On the dichotomy of personal and functional spheres, see Chapter Eighteen, pp. 498500.

29. Berger et al. have an excellent analysis of the division between public and private spheres and its relationship to the romantic reaction, 185–188.

30. The philosophical foundations of some American feminist and liberation thought is to be found in the Marxist sociology of knowledge of the Frankfurt school. The feminist and liberation movement outside of America, while sharing the same Marxist foundations, is usually militant and nationalistic. On feminist theology as part of the liberation movement, see Elizabeth Schüssler Fiorenza, “Feminist Theology as a Critical Theology of Liberation,” 29–50; on the Frankfurt school, see Albrecht Wellmer, Critical Theory of Society (New York: Herder & Herder, 1971); on liberation theology, see note 2 of Chapter Fifteen, p. 746.

31. For examples of feminist advocacy of consciousness-raising techniques, see Hole and Levine, Rebirth of Feminism (New York: Quadrangle, 1971), 137–138; J. Mitchell, Woman’s Estate (New York: Vintage Books, 1971), 61–63; and M. L. Carden, The New Feminist Movement (New York: Russell Sage Foundation, 1974), 33–37.

32. Examples of this appeal to the authority of personal experience are to be found throughout radical feminist literature. The Redstockings Manifesto states: “We regard our personal experience, and our feelings about that experience, as the basis for an analysis of our common situation.” The “Principles” of the New York Radical Women included: “We regard our feelings as our most important source of political understanding.” (Both documents can be found in Sisterhood Is Powerful, 520–535.) Some women’s liberationists would describe this approach as “the politics of experience.” See Juliet Mitchell’s discussion of this concept in Woman’s Estate, 13–14.

33. For one example of such a feminist attack on functional society, see Patricia Cayo Sexton, The Feminized Male (New York: Random House, 1969), 151–156.

34. This point is made well by Carden, 78–81, and by G. Gilder, 7.

35. Depending upon which definition of ideology one chooses (see note 1, above), it is possible to argue that traditional society did not have “ideologies” as such. If ideologies are clearly articulated theoretical systems which advocate a particular approach to social structure, then ideologies may not have existed in fully developed form until the eighteenth century. If, however, ideologies are defined in a more technical sociological fashion, or in a looser and more popular fashion, all societies have their ideologies.

36. The new consciousness of social life and social change is described well by Lionel Trilling, 26–27, and Berger et al., 177.

37. Among those historians who have used a term like “Western Christian Society” are Christopher Dawson, Understanding Europe (Garden City: Doubleday, 1960, 1952); and Arnold Toynbee, An Historian’s Approach to Religion (Oxford: Oxford University Press, 1956). Troeltsch called it the “Church-directed civilization.” See also Peter Gay, “The Unity of the French Enlightenment,” in The Role of Religion in Modern European History, ed. Sidney A. Burrell (New York: Macmillan, 1965), 83–89.

38. The following discussion of the three main stages in Christian social history is further developed in Clark, Building Christian Communities (Notre Dame: Ave Maria Press, 1972), 40–46; and Clark, Unordained Elders and Renewal Communities, 28–30.

39. Two brief articles in the Burrell anthology give a general sense for the eighteenth-century societal rejection of Christianity in Western Europe, see Peter Gay and Joseph N. Moody, “The Dechristianization of French Working Classes,” 89–98. Carl Becker’s The Heavenly City of the Eighteenth Century Philosophers (New Haven: Yale University Press, 1932) is also a good introduction to this area.

40. On equality, see pp. 526527.

41. Some examples of a genuine Christian response to modern society can be found in, among others, the work of John Henry Newman, C. S. Lewis, Peter Berger, Jacques Ellul, George Parkin Grant, and in papal social teaching.

Chapter 20

Applying Scriptural Teaching

1. This could be understood as a chapter on hermeneutics. “Hermeneutics,” however, is a word with many uses. The traditional use of the word refers to the study of the principles of exegesis. Hermeneutics, then, would be the theory, exegesis the practice. Such an understanding would be, for example, the one which Lonergan works with in Method in Theology, 153. Recently, “hermeneutics” has shifted its meaning. Stendahl, for instance, uses it in a way that is identical with “applicability” as used in this chapter (The Bible and the Role of Women, 8–10). The kind of discussions of hermeneutics that are common among scholars influenced by existential-phenomenological approaches are closer to Stendahl than to the traditional understanding. For all these, hermeneutics is something that follows upon exegesis and is at least logically subsequent, if not actually subsequent, to exegesis.

2. Exegesis cannot be considered “objective” in the sense that one can divorce the explanation of scripture from one’s personal stand. On the other hand, an exegesis which interprets scripture in its meaning for now is not therefore “subjective” in the sense of “arbitrary” or in the sense of giving an application that is just “its meaning for me.” It is possible to state “objectively” what God is saying now through the scripture to the human race, or to the Christian people, or to a particular group of Christians. The way scripture applies now is “objective” to the readers, because it is God who is speaking to them now through the scripture. They must discern his meaning. They cannot merely decide on what application they want to make of it.

3. The phrases “gap between the centuries,” “play First Century Semite,” and “play First Century Bibleland” come from Stendahl, The Bible and the Role of Women, 12, 17, 40. He does not use them to deny the applicability of the scriptural teaching on the roles of men and women but to raise the question of applicability. The section on “Some Background Problems” sets forth his view in a helpful way. It is developed in his article on biblical theology (“Biblical Theology, Contemporary,” IDB, 1:418–432) in a broader way and most helpfully in Paul among Jews and Gentiles, where he treats the question of the application of Pauline teaching on justification by faith. His first essay in The Bible and the Role of Women is significantly different from the second, which is the one which actually determines his stand on the question of ordination. The crux of his case is an interpretation of Galatians 3:28 that has already been discussed in Chapter Six, not his principle of application, although the latter plays some role in his view. However, the phrase “the gap between the centuries” has become a popular term somewhat independently of Stendahl, and all the uses of the term should not be attributed to him. (For example, S. Brown and R. Corney, 39–56, use the phrase “the gap between the centuries” to summarize a constellation of approaches which say that modern men should not apply various elements of scripture at all, rather than to refer to a reality which raises the question of the intent of scripture, as Stendahl does.)

4. Van der Meer uses a form of this second approach to “the gap between the centuries” in his Women Priests in the Catholic Church, 34–36. Invoking the logical principle that if an argument is to be valid then the subject of the argument must remain the same throughout, he maintains that the logical subject of the teaching under consideration, namely, woman, has changed so much in the past two thousand years that the texts are not referring to the same subject matter. Thus, what could be applied to women in the first century cannot be applied to what are called “women” in the twentieth century, since they are not the same thing. In raising this issue van der Meer draws an analogy with the usury question. Money has changed so much that the old arguments against usury can no longer be applied to the modern form of capitalism. “Money” and “lending” are simply not the same thing any more. It is certainly worth asking the question whether the intent of the scriptural teaching is men and women as such, or men and women as found in the cultural conditions of the first century. That question has been raised in Chapters Nine and Eleven of this book. The answer to that question is that the intent of scripture is men and women as such as God created them “in the beginning.” It is more ingenious than helpful to raise the question of the same “logical subject.” No first-century person transported to the twentieth century would have any doubt as to which human beings would properly be referred to as “men” and which as “women.” Sex is not so culturally dependent that a change in culture involves an essential change.

5. Stendahl, in Paul among Jews and Gentiles (see esp. 1–7) raises this point convincingly.

6. The phrase “the signs of the times” became popular in the 1960s (especially in the Catholic Church in the period following Vatican II). While the actual term is seldom used today, the ideas behind it appear frequently. Such ideas are reflected in Scanzoni/​Hardesty, 202–209; A. Swidler, 11–23; McGrath, 99–115; and L. Swidler, “Two Christian Views of Women,” National Catholic Reporter, March 29, 1974, 17.

7. There are a variety of ways of asserting that modern social currents represent God’s will. They often amount to saying that the main trends of modern society are produced by God. Many who take such approaches would like to hold out the possibility of distinguishing good currents in modern society from evil ones. They would also like to let the scripture have some role in the process. In the final analysis, however, their effective criteria are drawn from their own choices of values, ethical judgments, or ideologies rather than from revelation.

8. An example of this approach can be found in Arthur Gouthro, “Women’s Equality in the Christian Churches,” Ecumenical Trends, June 1978, 82. See also G. W. H. Lampe, “Church Tradition and the Ordination of Women,” Expository Times 76, no. 4 (January 1965): 125.

9. See, among others, Robin Morgan, introduction to Sisterhood Is Powerful; Mitchell, 99–112, 152–172; Hole/​Levine, 218–222, 278–302. It is also worth noting that among many “Christian feminists,” the same principles which they use to support their feminist position are now leading them to sanction homosexuality in the church. See, for example, L. Scanzoni and V. Mollenkott, Is the Homosexual My Neighbor? Another Christian View (New York: Harper & Row, 1978).

10. On the feminist lack of respect for the facts in scripture and examples of justifying Eve for her part in the Fall, see the lists in the Note on Method: Exegesis, pp. 231234. With regard to social science, see the discussion in the Note on Method: Social Science, pp. 469476.

11. See Emile Comar, “Xerox’ Book Back,” in the New Orleans Clarion Herald, June 3, 1976.

12. Among those who use “development of doctrine” for setting aside scriptural teaching in this area are Gouthro, 82; and Sr. Elizabeth Carroll, “The Proper Place for Women in the Church,” in Women and Catholic Priesthood: An Expanded Vision, ed. Anne Marie Gardiner (New York: Paulist, 1976), 18–19. The notion of a “dynamic” rather than a “static” view of tradition can also move in the same direction. For many who speak of it, a “dynamic” view is one which allows change in doctrine. See Gouthro, 82; G. Tavard in Perspectives on Scripture and Tradition, ed. Joseph Kelly (Notre Dame: Fides, 1976), 122ff.

13. John Henry Newman, An Essay on the Development of Christian Doctrine.

14. Sheets, 30, notes the distinction. J. Walgrave, “Doctrine, Development of,” in New Catholic Encyclopedia, 4:940–944, draws some helpful distinctions between “logical,” “theological,” and “transformistic” theories of the development of doctrine. An approach which sets aside scriptural teaching in this area would be “transformistic.” Newman’s would be “theological.” Baum uses the term “non-homogeneous development” for what Walgrave calls “transformistic” in “Infallibility and Doctrinal Development,” New Horizons (New York: Paulist, 1972), 28–36. For other valuable treatments of the subject of development of doctrine, see Jaroslav Pelikan, Development of Christian Doctrine (New Haven: Yale University Press, 1969), and Walgrave, Unfolding Revelation (London: Hutchinson, 1972).

15. Newman’s criteria were rather “Catholic,” as Pelikan has observed. Pelikan’s discussion of Newman provides a good perspective from a sympathetic Protestant. See Pelikan, 12–24.

16. Phyllis Trible, “Depatriarchalizing in Biblical Interpretation,” The Journal of the American Academy of Religion 41, no. 1 (March 1973): 30–48.

17. Lonergan makes this point in Method in Theology, in the section on Dialectic, 235ff.

18. Among those who exemplify “the current church practice” argument are Perry; Scanzoni/​Hardesty, 70, 179 (from an Evangelical perspective); and Kress, a Catholic, 311–318, who proposes in an appendix on ordination of women the remarkable argument that the Roman Catholic Church has already admitted women to the sacrament of Holy Orders by making them special ministers of the eucharist, therefore the issue of women’s ordination in the Catholic Church has already been resolved by that church’s current practice.

19. Troy Perry, “God Loves Me Too,” in Is Gay Good?, ed. W. Dwight Oberholtzer (Philadelphia: The Westminster Press, 1971).

20. See van der Meer, 32–34.

21. Both the word “interpretation” and the word “adaptation” carry with them some potential confusion in terminology. “Interpretation” in this chapter refers to the faithful re-translation of the first-century statement into its twentieth-century equivalent. However, it is common in contemporary scripture scholarship to use “interpretation” to refer to the entire process of applying scripture, or even more broadly, to the entire process of making the teaching of scripture clear (a process which includes translation and exegesis as well as application). Here, it is used in a more specialized sense, as one possible element of application. “Adaptation,” too, can be understood in more than one way. Even after the elements of a passage are “interpreted” into their contemporary equivalent, they can be followed somewhat differently than the passage specifically instructs, shifting the way the teaching is carried out so as to accomplish the actual intention more faithfully. In this chapter, this shifting process is called “adaptation.” Some people, however, would tend to use the term more broadly, referring not only to changes in the way the passage is followed, but also to changes which we might make in our circumstances (creating a “space” for the teaching to be applied).

22. To make this statement is not to eliminate the role of tradition, or that of church authority, in interpreting scripture.

23. This principle does not rule out the role of tradition in the process. Christian churches differ at this point. The fundamental issue, however, is that where God has revealed his will to us (whether in scripture or tradition), the intent of his will is the prime factor in determining the kind of response we make to problems of applicability to our circumstances.

24. The latter part of Brown and Corney’s essay, 47–54, is a good example of an approach which suffers from the failure to be clear on models of interpretation and hence illustrates the problem well. While many of their individual observations are helpful, they are considering the whole problem of application of the scriptural teaching on the roles of men and women as if it were simply a matter of scripture dealing with a particular situation. They miss the fact that different principles operate for different types of material and more of the material in our area is, in fact, instructional. They also could consider more fully the “logic” of argumentation from particular to particular. Newman’s discussion of “The Illative Sense” in A Grammar of Assent (New York: Longman’s & Green, 1947) is particularly helpful here. Many discussions of “hermeneutics” fail to distinguish clearly enough the different types of material and the different models of understanding and application.

25. Stendahl in The Bible and the Role of Women, 38–41, correctly observes the scriptural teaching on women’s place in the Christian community is not a discussion of “ordination” but of women’s place in society. He operates, however, with a Christendom mentality. For him, the fact of a woman’s “emancipation” in society is decisive for the life of the church. He does not fully consider the possibility that we might be dealing with two societies, a Christian one existing in the midst of a worldly one. The distinction between secular society and Christian society was drawn very forcefully by A. Nygren in an intervention in the 1954 Synod of the Swedish Lutheran Church. Nygren pointed out that a change in the laws of secular society does not necessarily entail a change in the organization of the church, for, as the body of Christ, the church receives its laws from scripture. See the discussion in Refoulé, 85.

26. There are, of course, certain principles which apply both inside and outside the community. For instance, Christians are to love all people, and are to be compassionate and merciful to all.

27. Dunn, 69, 77, calls this “interpreted tradition.” “Interpretation” here is used in a broader sense than the text of the chapter does, but the concepts and the understanding behind them are very similar. Dunn’s key formulation is, “Paul regards the ethical tradition drawn from the traditions about Jesus not as a series of laws which have to be obeyed whatever the circumstances, but more as a set of principles which have to be applied in the light of circumstances.” Dunn, however, confuses the issue when he says that Paul therefore does not regard this tradition as having “binding force on all his converts.” It would be better to say that he regards them as having binding force where applicable according to the intention of the teaching. The idea, however, seems to be the same.

Chapter 21

The Bases of a Christian Approach Today

1. For further development of the idea of forming communities and for a treatment of some of the necessary principles, see the author’s Building Christian Communities.

2. This usage is both acknowledged and criticized in Heinrich Popitz in “The Concept of Social Role as an Element of Sociological Theory,” in Role, ed. John A. Jackson (Cambridge: Cambridge University Press, 1972), 11–39. Popitz holds that “informal social roles” are not properly social roles at all, 16–20.

3. This second use of the term “social role” can be clearly seen in J. Scherer, Contemporary Community (London: Tavistock Publications, 1972), 96–103. Scherer explicitly identifies social roles with functional organizations, and contrasts them to the approach taken in a more communal environment.

4. These three uses of the term “social role” are sometimes mixed. For example, some would view both relational and functional roles as social roles, and only exclude informal roles from the definition. See Popitz, 16–20.

5. On ascribed and achieved roles, see Chapter Eighteen, p. 497.

6. Margaret Mead, Male and Female, 173.

7. This objection is raised or noted by Scanzoni/​Hardesty, 81–82, 183; Mollenkott, Women, Men, and the Church, 85; and Carden, 11, 159; among others.

8. Among those raising the objection of inauthenticity are Scanzoni/​Hardesty, 205–206, and Hole/​Levine, 201–202.

9. For a helpful discussion of this, see Nisbet, The Quest for Community, 229–230.

10. In The Homeless Mind this question is discussed as the “underinstitutionalization” of private life:

The individual is given enormous latitude in fabricating his own particular private life—a kind of “do-it-yourself” universe.

This latitude obviously has its satisfactions, but it also imposes severe burdens. The most obvious is that most individuals do not know how to construct a universe and therefore become furiously frustrated when they are faced with a need to do so. The most fundamental function of institutions is probably to protect the individual from having to make too many choices. The private sphere has arisen as an interstitial area left over by the large institutions of modern society. As such, it has become underinstitutionalized and therefore become an area of unparalleled liberty and anxiety for the individual. Whatever compensations the private sphere provides are usually experienced as fragile, possibly artificial and essentially unreliable. (186–187)

11. Among those voicing or mentioning this objection on the basis of discrimination are Carden, 13–14; Mitchell, 99; and Hole/​Levine, 122.

12. On the inaccuracy of a comparison between sexism and racism, see A. Dummett, “Racism and Sexism: A False Analogy,” New Blackfriars 56, no. 666 (November 1975): 484–492. Pierre van den Berghe treats the issue well, saying: “The essential difference between race and sex, however, is that the former is a biologically trivial if not meaningless category, whereas the latter is a fundamental one” (48).

13. This objection concerning sex-role stereotyping is mentioned with great frequency. See, for instance, Scanzoni/​Hardesty, 34, 81, 182–183; Carden, 12; A. Swidler, 17; Hole/​Levine, 197–200; Mollenkott, 75ff.

14. See Chapter Sixteen, p. 384, and Chapter Seventeen, pp. 434437.

15. Epistle to Diognetus, trans. Maxwell Staniforth, in Early Christian Writings (Baltimore: Penguin, 1968), 181–182.

16. Though not an approach based on scripture or tradition, the socialist model has been taken by some Christians in their attempts to build community. In some ways these community attempts parallel the Jewish Kibbutzim. The community has a Christian commitment, but the social structure is socialist. A collective of people relating as individuals is understood as an expression of Christian brotherhood. Leaders assume the role of administrators and as facilitators of democratic (collective) decisions, and this role is understood in terms of service.

17. The various elements of the monastic model can best be seen in some of the early rules, such as The Rule of St. Benedict, ed. J. McCann (Westminster: Newman, 1952); The Ascetic Works of St. Basil, ed. W. K. L. Clarke; and The Rule of St. Augustine, trans. T. Hand (Westminster: Newman, 1956).

Chapter 22

Guidelines for a Modern Christian Approach to Men’s and Women’s Roles

No notes

Chapter 23

Special Issues in Constructing a Modern Christian Social Structure

1. Some of the problems experienced by men are described in Mead, Male and Female, 104–120, 164, 169; Gilder, Sexual Suicide, 14–25, 103–108; and Vance Packard, The Sexual Wilderness (New York: David McKay, 1968), 118–134, 380–395. On the subject of gender and social problems, Gilder writes: “Men commit over 90 percent of major crimes of violence, 100 percent of the rapes, 95 percent of the burglaries. They comprise 94 percent of our drunken drivers, 70 percent of suicides, 91 percent of offenders against family and children” (Sexual Suicide, 6).

2. On the problem of the socially disruptive male, see Gilder, 105–106, and Sexton, 1–11. For discussions of feminization, see Sexton, ibid., and Sexton, “How the American Boy is Feminized,” Psychology Today 3, no. 8 (January 1970): 23–27, 66–67; Ann Douglas, The Feminization of American Culture (New York: Alfred A. Knopf, 1977); Levy, Modernization: Latecomers and Survivors, 112–120; Berger et al., 210.

3. For different uses of the term “feminization,” see Sexton, and Douglas. Sexton’s treatment is especially relevant to this chapter. She sees the “feminized male” as a man “whose normal male impulses are suppressed or misshapen by overexposure to feminine norms” (4).

4. For a similar distinction, see Money and Ehrhardt’s discussion of gender identity and gender role, 4, 15–23, 162–165, 176–179, 243–247.

5. Sexton clearly distinguishes between the feminized male and the homosexual male:

The feminized male is not necessarily a sissy; some are, most are not, though many lean in that direction. Nor is the feminized male a homosexual; some are, most are not. So far as we know, no evidence shows that the two are synonymous, or even closely related. Sex habits may be one thing, and personality quite another. (16)

By “sissy” Sexton may mean “effeminate” as the term is used in this chapter. If so, Sexton discusses the same three terms distinguished in this chapter.

It is helpful to notice that the connection between effeminacy and homosexuality in males seems to be closer than that between homosexuality and feminization in males.

6. Levy, Modernization: Latecomers and Survivors, 117, 119–120.

7. Money/​Ehrhardt, 147–149; Mead, Male and Female, 121–123, 165–169; Gilder, 14–25, 78–88, 92–97.

8. On the problems experienced by this type of woman, see Bardwick, 114–126, and Chesler, 22.

9. See Mead, Male and Female, 110.

10. See Evans-Pritchard, 51–52.

11. An excellent study of the development of the modern ideal of man-woman companionship is found in Shorter. One of his main themes is the important role of sentiment in the modern family. He defines romantic love using such terms as “empathy” and “spontaneity,” thus highlighting the aspect of companionship (15–17). Shorter’s discussion of courtship customs (138–167) and the nuclear family (205–254) are also useful for gaining an understanding of the modern ideal of man-woman companionship. Among many Christian feminists, the “companionship marriage” ideal is often praised, and such features as “role-interchangeability” and the abolition of complementarity in marriage are heavily espoused. For a typical example, see Scanzoni/​Hardesty, 106–118.

12. For a description of patterns of celibate life, see Clark, Unordained Elders and Renewal Communities. Also helpful is P. Camelot, “Virginity,” New Catholic Encyclopedia, 14:701–704.

Chapter 24

Ordination, Occupation, Legislation

1. See the brief account of Olympia Brown in Sojourners, November 1975, 11–13. There had been an earlier ordination of women in a local Congregationalist Church in 1853 in South Butler, New York, but it had been unofficial and not formally recognized.

2. From the Catholic Church, see especially Declaration on the Question of the Admission of Women to the Ministerial Priesthood, Sacred Congregation for the Doctrine of the Faith, October 15, 1976. See also Paul VI’s statement of April 18, 1975 to the Study Commission for International Women’s Year in L’Osservatore Romano (English edition), May 1, 1975, 5; and Archbishop Joseph Bernardin’s statement on behalf of the National Conference of Catholic Bishops in the United States of October 3, 1975, in USCC News Release of October 7, 1975. From the Eastern Orthodox Churches, see among others the statement of Archbishop Athenagoras, Ordinary of the Orthodox Archdiocese of Thyateira and Great Britain, given on May 14, 1975, quoted at length in the English edition of L’Osservatore Romano, July 3, 1975, 9–10.

3. This point is made by Sheets, “Ordination of Women: The Issues,” 30. See also Alexander Schmemann, “Concerning Women’s Ordination: A Letter to an Episcopal Friend,” St. Vladimir’s Theological Quarterly 17, no. 3 (1973): 239–243; and Mascall, Women Priests?, 3–4.

4. See the report of the Pontifical Biblical Commission, published in Origins, July 1, 1976, 92–96. The report is a composite document, and is simply intended to be a study document. See the comment in note 46 of Chapter Thirteen (p. 738) concerning the report’s distinction between government/​eldership and sacramental ministry.

5. For a fuller discussion of this difference, see Clark, Building Christian Communities, 20–46.

6. Here it is instructive to read the Kenyon case of 1974 in the United Presbyterian Church in the USA. Walter W. Kenyon appeared for ordination and stated in the course of the examination that he would not ordain women to the session. He would not oppose the ordination of women, and would even call in someone else to do it, but he would not do so himself. His position was based upon scripture, primarily Timothy 2:12. That position was not argued either in the original examination before his presbytery (which agreed to ordain him), or in the trial before the synod (which overruled the presbytery) or before the general assembly (which sustained the synod). The grounds given for rejecting Kenyon’s ordination was his refusal to abide by the order of the United Presbyterian Church. That decision has a great deal of wisdom behind it. The fundamental issue in such a case is not what the scripture says, but what kind of a body a particular church is and what principles it follows. A summary of the case is recorded in Maxwell v. Presbytery of Pittsburgh (Remedial Case 1), in the minutes of the General Assembly of the United Presbyterian Church in the USA, 1975, 254–259.

7. See S. B. Clark, “Social Order and Women’s Ordination,” America, January 17, 1976, 32–33.