Thursday 2 May 2013

Christian Reflection on Women in the Bible

The latest issue of Christian Reflection, published by the Center for Christian Ethics at Baylor University, is now available, this one devoted to ‘Women in the Bible’. The whole issue is available as a pdf here, and an accompanying Study Guide is available here. The main articles, with their abstracts, are as follows:

Robert B. Kruschwitz
Studying the stories of women in the Bible can point us to the heart of the scriptural narrative. Without ignoring some of the difficult androcentric passages in the Bible, our contributors show us the liberating implications, for both men and women, of studying the women in the Bible.

Junia Pokrifka
Redeeming Women in the Grand Narrative of Scripture
In light of the biblical grand narrative of redemption and restorative justice, patriarchy and androcentrism can no longer be seen as normative, but as regrettable conditions that God and God’s human agents are working to overcome.

Mary Ann Beavis
Who is Mary Magdalene?
The traditional image of the Magdalene as a repentant prostitute, not to mention contemporary speculations about her being a priestess or goddess figure or bride of Christ, are quite mistaken. They fail to do justice to the biblical and historical woman behind the legend.

Mona Tokarek LaFosse
Women’s Roles in the Letters to Timothy and Titus
The letters to Timothy and Titus reveal a growing consciousness about reputation in early Christian communities. Behavior that outsiders might find distasteful – especially the behavior of women – could be perceived as immoral, compromising the honor of the group. How do these observations (and prescriptions) bear on the present?

Joy A. Schroeder
Deborah’s Daughters
As prophetess and judge, Deborah became a potent symbol of female authority and speech, an obvious exemplar for women aspiring to claim a public voice in the nineteenth century. These women – preachers, devotional writers, suffragists, and abolitionists – were Deborah’s daughters.

Other Voices

Heidi J. Hornik
Biblical Women in Christian Art

Jeanie Miley
Worship Service

Jocelyn Mathewes
Women with Icons
In the Orthodox tradition, icons – like the saints and stories they portray – point to the power of the larger story of Scripture, and show how great a God is our God. The photographs in the Women with Icons project reveal how the icons of patron saints, and the women who hold them close, point to Christ.

Katherine Callahan-Howell
Ripples of Freedom
God desires that the spiritual freedom that we receive in Christ Jesus should cascade into others’ lives. Sometimes this happens in unpredictable ways. In Acts 16:16-34, an unnamed slave woman sets in motion a course of wonderful, freeing events that we remember and celebrate today.

F. Scott Spencer
Preaching about Women in (and on) the Bible
Since women experience and interpret the world differently from men, it would be nice if the viewpoints of women scholars were seriously considered in preaching today – not least in dialogue with women’s stories in the Bible.

Sheila Klopfer
Feminist Scholarship on Women in the Bible
While acknowledging the difficult androcentrism of the Bible, the three books reviewed here also affirm its liberative and authoritative nature. They present a constructive way forward for modern interpreters who are committed to feminism and who maintain a high view of scriptural authority.

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