Why I’m (Functionally) Egalitarian

Yesterday, I stumbled across an interesting post on the Gospel Coalition Voices blog. In it was the following quote by Russell Moore, dean of Theology at the Southern Baptist Seminary:

What I fear is that we have many people in evangelicalism who can check off “complementarian” on a box but who really aren’t living out complementarian lives. Sometimes I fear we have marriages that are functionally egalitarian, because they are within the structure of the larger society. If all we are doing is saying “male headship” and “wives submit to your husbands,” but we’re not really defining what that looks like . . . in this kind of culture, when those things are being challenged, then it’s simply going to go away.

I hate to break it to Dr. Moore, but…duh!┬áBecause when you practice the kind of complementarianism outlined by the Bible, that’s what you get: something functionally egalitarian. Continue reading

Where Complementarians Go Wrong on Headship

Get your heretical indoctrination while supplies last!

“Life is too short to subject myself to any more of those books.”

This was the conclusion my coworker and friend came to as we sat at lunch together a few weeks ago. I laughed, because I knew exactly to which books she was referring: those that promote a complementarian view of marriage. Needless to say, without getting into the gritty details, such teachings have caused my friend no end of grief in her own marriage.

Complementarianism is the belief that God created men and women to complement each other in marriage, and that the husband exercises headship over the wife as described in Ephesians 5:23. Many popular Christian leaders–most notably John Piper, Mark Driscoll, and Debi Pearl–promote this theory in their teachings on marriage.

Now, I’m not here to claim that such a view of scripture is completely wrong. If you want to find complementarianism in scripture, you can, and, if exercised correctly, it can make for a harmonious marriage. However, many complementarian teachers too often twist scripture–to the detriment of many Christian marriages. This is what I wish to address. Continue reading