Andrew Wilson of Newfrontiers recently wrote "I believe in women in ministry, the equality of men and women…" yet less than a week earlier he wrote Complementarianism and the Gospel in which he recomended a video to watch and some articles to read.
I am amazed that Andrew thinks that it is at all helpful to his argument to appeal to John Piper ("It's well worth a look").
John Piper has taught that a wife should endure verbal abuse for a season and that she should endure being smacked at least once (just a reminder that you can watch him saying this on youtube). [update see the comment below from Jon Bryon who corrects my paraphrase of John Piper's comments]
When I challenge Newfrontiers on Male Headship I am continually told that I am being unfair, that in fact they believe women and men are equal. They say that restricting the role of elders to only men and requiring women to submit to the leadership of their husband does not create or imply inequality. They tell me abuse is always wrong and they would never accept it. They tell me that gender roles are not about power and they do not make women vulnerable.
If that is true then why suggest that John Piper, who teaches women to accept abuse, is "well worth a look" (no warnings about his teaching). If Andrew had a teenage daughter would he want her listening to a preacher telling her to endure abuse (verbal for a season, physical at least once)?
Why isn't Andrew making it clear that Newfrontiers do not accept John Piper's teaching on abuse?
Newfrontiers are connecting themselves with people who hold extreme views and they are not saying these are wrong.
In the same post Andrew writes:
What do these people write that Andrew does not condemn?
"The rejection of biblical gender roles has dire implications for evangelical theololgy. The hermeneutics of egalitarianism are a blemish leading to theological cancer."
Oh well at least those of us who believe in equality are probably no worse at spelling "theology"!
Oh and by the way as someone whose parents both died of real cancer an expression like this is always going to be particularly welcome!
Elsewhere in the article:
"it is the potentialities of egalitarianism that make it so deadly, not its expression in any particular evangelical."
"This is not to say that every egalitarian will eventually become a heretic. Roger Nicole remained a convinced egalitarian and an evangelical stalwart all the way to the end. We can think of other individuals for whom egalitarianism has not and likely will never lead to an erosion of their fundamental evangelical commitments. Nevertheless, the issue at hand is not whether or not we can find orthodox evangelicals who are also egalitarian. The question at hand is whether or not egalitarian doctrine itself tends toward the erosion of fundamental evangelical commitments such as inerrancy, the doctrine of God, and penal substitutionary atonement. Is the egalitarian blemish benign or potentially malignant?"
Of course those quotes are from the "slightly more friendly angle" (note the assumption that the only alternative to an evangelical is a heretic and the very tight defintion of an evangelical, compare to the Evangelical Alliance).
The alternative is:
"The true gospel (the death, burial, and resurrection of Jesus) calls us to a life of repentance and faith, and it is not possible to work together with men "in the gospel" when they are refusing to call people to repent of the principal corruption of our day, which is that of sexual confusion. This confusion includes homosexuality, porn, fornication, divorce, women's ordination, and so on. This is the front line of the battle, and if I decline to strike hands with a man who is confused at this point, I am not saying that he is going to Hell. I am only saying that if he cannot detect a strategic moment in history like this, then he ought not to be a general. Keep him on our side, but him back in the Red Cross tent and ask him to wind some bandages."
When Andrew Wilson says he believes in equality you need to consider the people he wants Newfrontiers to learn from. People who say that women should endure abuse; that women's ordination is to be ranked with porn and fornication; and that egaliarianism is a deadly cancer leading, most but not quite every person, to becoming a heretic.
According to Google a lot of sites think you can tell a lot about a person by the company they keep.