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Jesus, the Canaanite Woman, and Caring for Marginalized People

Today’s guest post is from Dominique DuBois Gilliard, a graduate of North Park Theological Seminary where he also served as an adjunct professor, and comes via the ECC’s Commission on Gender Equality’s blog. How does one best care for marginalized people, those who have been isolated from community, stigmatized by society, and even neglected or […]

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Long Hair and Head Coverings and Hierarchy, Oh My! 1 Cor. 11 in the Women in Ministry Sermon Series

1 Corinthians 11 may be one of the most confusing passages in the New Testament. What’s all this “headship” stuff about (and how can God be the head of Christ, if Christ IS God)? Do men represent “the glory of God” better than women? What’s all this talk about long hair, short hair, shaved heads, […]

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Calvinism, Control Freaks, and the Sovereignty of God

The internet has been obsessed with Calvinism for the past week or so. Zack Hunt’s Dear John letter to Calvin, Jonathan Merritt’s article about the troubling trends in America’s Calvinist revival, the Sovereign Grace Ministries scandal and The Gospel Coalition’s shifting blog roll. I don’t typically blog about denominational or doctrinal differences, but I’ve been pondering the […]

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Jesus, Paul, and Women in the New Testament: The Women In Ministry Sermon Series.

How did Jesus view women, and just how radical was his treatment of them in his society? What did it mean that Mary “sat at Jesus’ feet,” and what’s with those women who traveled with Jesus and the Twelve? Who was Junia, what did Phoebe have to do with the Book of Romans, and was Priscilla […]

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In the Beginning: Oneness, Equality, and Women in the Old Testament: The Women in Ministry Sermon Series

My friend James preached a great sermon this past week about God’s original plan in creating humans male and female (synopsis: so they could experience oneness and community, not so the male would have someone to help him get his chores done), talked about some of the misunderstandings of the first three chapters of Genesis […]

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Are you digging wells or building fences? The women in ministry sermon series

Yay! The new sermon about women in ministry is up, and you can listen by clicking here. Here’s what Pastor Darrell has to say about this message: This week we start our sermon series “Called and Gifted – In It Together” by looking at John 4:1-42.  The story of Jesus talking to the Samaritan woman […]

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Women in Ministry Sermon Series: The 1 Timothy 2:12 “Silence” Passage

My church, Mission Covenant Church, has just started a six-week sermon series on women in ministry titled “Called and Gifted.” For the next month and a half, we will be digging into the Bible to see what it says about women (and men!) working together for the kingdom, taking the whole council of scripture into […]

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Going to Jesus Outside the Camp

This post was originally published in March 2009. I'm not a big fan of taking Bible verses (or chapters or books for that matter) out of context, but every once in a while I come across a snippet of scripture that just steals my breath away. Today's was from Hebrews 13:13, in the New Century […]

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Winds of Change: Speaking Up for Women in Ministry

One of the things I love about my denomination, the Evangelical Covenant Church, is their strong support of women in ministry. Change can be slow, however, and women called to pastoral ministry often find themselves walking a long, difficult path, even in denominations that support them. That's why the ECC's Commission on Biblical Gender Equality […]

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Love Should Never Include Disclaimers: Why Christians Need to Stop Trying to “Fix” People

There was a time when I thought it was my Christian duty to point out anything I thought someone was doing wrong. I called out teachers for being too hard on other kids. If the pastor said something I disagreed with in a sermon, I informed him of it afterward. I made sure people on […]

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The Gospel is Never at Stake. A Few Words on Orthodoxy, Christian Unity, and Not Being a Big Jerk

I saw a quote from a Christian leader yesterday, one who I respect despite disagreeing with some of his doctrine. It contained the words “At stake is the gospel of Jesus Christ.” Whoa, hold up. I’m not a scholar or a theologian, but I can tell you one thing: The gospel of Jesus Christ is […]

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Reclaiming Eve: How the gospel restores women

Suzanne Burden is a heart sister, a gentle woman who wants to see women thrive, set free to work in God’s kingdom alongside their brothers. I’m thrilled to be posting this short description and Q&A about her new book, Reclaiming Eve. About Reclaiming Eve What started as a ladies’ Bible study in their church led […]

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Mary Magdalene, the Apostle to the Apostles

What does the gospel make possible for women? Do we have to stay hidden away in the shadow of the curse, as if our silence and subservience could atone for the sin of the first woman’s fall, or are we called to live in the light of the resurrection? I am so excited about my […]

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What one book do you think every Christian should read? Share your One Book!

So, I’ve been thinking about how to pull off the Seminary Stories series, and I’ve decided to start this way. One of the things that I struggled with the most when I was started feeling the need to dig deeper into what I believed and why was just not knowing where to begin. What books […]

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Why Men Need to Mentor Women. I’m Looking at You, Pastors!

I spent most of my twenties in a state of mind-numbing, hair-pulling, pacing-tiger frustration. I was a smart, God-obsessed young woman who was passionate about ministry and theology, but had no idea what to do with myself. If the Christian blogosphere had existed in its current state, I probably would have taken up permanent residence […]

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Internet Outrage; Or, why we need to refuse to sit in the seat of the scornful.

I haven't been blogging much for the last several months, and there are a few reasons for that. Sure, I've been busy. Between school stuff, interning at my church, and being part of a family whose M.O. resembles pedaling a bicycle downhill fast (we take our share of tumbles, but we get places!), there's always […]

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Slavery, Colonialism, and Using the Bible to Keep Women Down.

For me, one of the most disturbing parts of the EFOGE training on gender equality in Bondo, Kenya, was hearing the stereotypes commonly used about women (not that they were using them, but they were discussing them). Women are like animals. Women simply aren't as intelligent or capable as men. Because women are lesser beings, […]

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Opposition to Gender Equality, East and West.

It's interesting, the questions people ask when you start talking about gender equality in a Christian context. Of course, there are the theological questions, important conversations that need to be had about biblical interpretation, ancient cultures, translation and projection, and God's heart for humankind. But then, you crash headlong into people's native culture, where belief […]

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On arguing with experience, grieving the Holy Spirit, and being 5/8ths right.

My pastor is fond of saying “You can't argue with experience.” But some people do. I've been hearing about it a lot lately in Christian circles. The cessationist pastor who accuses charismatics of being heretics who “grieve the Holy Spirit.” The pentecostal who thinks people who don't speak in tongues aren't saved. The academic types […]

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When We Are Impatient With God’s Work in Our Lives.

I read Isaiah 1 this morning. It's a powerful passage, one that is often quoted in justice-oriented circles because of it's condemnation of empty religious rituals and insistence that righteousness means helping the oppressed, defending the cause of orphans and fighting for the rights of widows. Good stuff. But, hoo boy. It's kinda dumb to […]

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Divorce in the Church: “I literally asked Jesus to end my life because, in my mind, I could not end my marriage.”

Divorce is one of those topics we don’t really like to talk about in church. We all know people who have been wounded by divorce, and we all know people who have been wounded by staying in an unhealthy marriage. We know that the Bible speaks against divorce, yet we also know that God allowed […]

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In Which a Woman Scandalizes Stingy Hearts, but Blesses Jesus Enormously.

In “She Did What She Could,” Elisa Morgan asked a question only a woman would think to ask. When Jesus was on the cross, could he still smell the costly perfume Mary of Bethany had anointed him with only days before? Did it comfort him, this reminder of his friend's love, as he was dying […]

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“Get Comfortable with Being Uncomfortable”: Lament as an Act of Worship

Here’s the last post from my friend Pam on dealing with the “waves of adversity” in our lives. I am becoming an avid cyclist, some would describe me as a obsessive cyclist, but I enjoy cycling and participating in road races. It’s a newer passion and I find myself being coached and encouraged by those […]

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Are you going to live a little more or die a little bit? Joan Chittister on the spirituality of struggle.

My friend Pam and I spoke at a women’s conference in Moose Lake, MN recently, about the “waves of adversity” we all face in our lives. I’ll be posting follow-ups for the next couple weeks, so the women who were there (and anyone who wasn’t!) can continue to chew on and discuss the topic. This […]

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Stillness in the Storm

My friend Pam and I spoke at a women’s conference in Moose Lake, MN recently, about the “waves of adversity” we all face in our lives. I’ll be posting follow-ups for the next couple weeks, so the women who were there (and anyone who wasn’t!) can continue to chew on and discuss the topic. This […]

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Mary Means “Rebellion”: Jesus and His Band of Rebellious Women

When I was little, my mom used to act out Bible stories with me. My favorite, always, was Mary Magdelene finding Jesus in the garden. I would be Mary, kneeling in front of the tomb (our wood stove) in the little flannel bathrobe my mom had sewn for me, pretending to cry. My mom would […]

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On Deserts and Dry Places: When You Hit A Dry Patch In Your Walk With Christ

Lent commemorates the 40 days Jesus spent fasting in the desert. I’ve been feeling rather dry myself lately, but I don’t think it has anything to do with Lent. Here are some of the things that seem to wring me out, spiritually-speaking. Maybe you can relate. Analyzing Everything I LOVE studying and learning more about […]

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“The missionaries brought the Bread of Life, but we choked on the packaging.”

“When the missionaries came, they brought the Bread of Life. But alas, we choked on the cellophane it was wrapped in.” Those were words I heard over and over as a child, my missionary father thoughtfully quoting a Liberian radio preacher. I could tell my father took them very seriously, so I did too, branding […]

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John Piper, Women in Combat, and How Gender Roles Fall Short of the Glory of Humankind

Co-Ed Combat and Cultural Cowardice, an article written by John Piper in 2007, has resurfaced in light of the U.S. military’s decision to let women serve in combat. I’m posting part of it here not because I want to pick a fight with Piper (please see my comments policy), or discuss women in combat (I […]

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50 Shades of Complementarian? Why We Should Lay Down the Labels, and Look at Our Common Purpose

Last week, a Twitter friend told me how shamed and berated many blogs made her feel for her complementarian theology. That made me so sad. I mean, I get it. Egalitarians are a minority in the evangelical world, and are often treated like theological scapegoats by their more traditional brothers and sisters. Women still lack […]

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