Response to CBMW’s Annotated Bibliography

CBMW made an annotated bibliography of gender-related articles of 2006 and included some commentary on my The “Difference” Between “A and Not-A”: An Analyses of Alleged “Word-Tricks” and Obfuscations. Their comments are reproduced below and my responses are in [red].

Omelianchuk, Adam. “The ‘Difference’ Between ‘A and Not-A’: An Analysis of Alleged ‘Word Tricks’ and Obfuscations.” Priscilla Papers 20, no. 1 (2006): 9-12.

Omelianchuk examines “Egalitarian Claim 10:6” in Evangelical Feminism and Biblical Truth (Multnomah, 2004) by Wayne Grudem. Omelianchuk first defines and examines key terms used in the gender role debate (i.e., authority, leadership, submission, etc.) by using reference books such as a dictionary and thesaurus. He then critiques the “hierarchicalist” position and concludes that they, not egalitarians, use word tricks and obfuscate language to conceal the incoherence of their view. However, Omelianchuk’s fundamental error is the assertion that differences in function necessarily implies inferiority in being, which is a common mistake to make when words and concepts are defined by resources other than the Bible [The “fundamental error” in this review is that it fails to understand that my use of the dictionary and thesaurus was to clarify words that complementarians use in their descriptions of how they think gender hierarchy is compatible with gender equality. I did not use them as substitutes for Scripture as this review misleading implies. I started with Wayne Grudem’s assertions and analyzed the logic of his position. There is nothing wrong with using reference books in clarifying how words are being used in a debate about what the Bible supposedly teaches ]. His logic fails because he, like other egalitarians, cannot grasp the simultaneous biblical concepts of equality in personhood and difference in function [This begs the question. The very point of my article was to show how complementarians construe these ideas is contradictory, and therefore cannot be grasped in the same way a colorless blue car cannot be grasped. Criticizing me for failing to grasp it trivially says that I am wrong because I don’t believe their position is right] He also fails to see that male headship is not harsh headship. As God is the head of Christ and Christ is the head of man (1 Cor 11:3), so men are to lovingly and sacrificially lead like Christ, who did not come “to be served but to serve, and to give his life as a ransom for many” (Mark 10:45) [This is irrelevant. Whether harsh or humble, men are deemed authoritative over women because they are men. The issue of whether they are good or bad at being authoritative is another matter ]. Lastly, he fails to see that male leadership is not due to women being “unfit” to lead. Rather, it is God’s wise design for his creation which points to greater realities, namely, Christ’s leadership of the church and the Triune God himself, who as Father, Son, and Holy Spirit, are equal in essence yet different in function [If women are designed by God to be in subjection then how are they not unfit to lead? Such greater realities don’t mimic this crucial point in that the Son is uncreated and there is nothing in him or in the Father that requires him to be subordinate, nor is the church equal with Christ in being ].


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