To help restore damaged relations with the lesbian, gay, bisexual and transgender (LGBT) community the Church of Latter Day Saints endorsed Salt Lake City, Utah, ordinances making it illegal to discriminate against gays in housing and employment. Part of what the Southern Baptist Convention’s ERLC confrontationally calls the radical homosexual agenda, they passed.
Last week, voters in Kalamazoo, Michigan, approved a similar ordinance.
The Salt Lake City action is the fruit of a complex process of reconciliation between Mormon Church, which urged members to contribute money to the campaign in support of California’s Proposition 8 banning same-sex marriage, and LGBT groups.
Mormons are not, it seems, consumed by inerrant distrust.
The woman Junia, whom St. Paul calls “of note among the apostles” (KJV, RSV) in the Epistle to the Romans 16:7, is the subject of blogs and scholarly articles considering her genter. She has inspired at least one scholarly and one popular book affirming her womanhood.
Among recent articles, one whose struggle with the problem Junia as a female historic figure poses for Southern Baptist inerrantists, attracted the attention of Enid, Oklahoma, pastor Wade Burleson. He courteously called out Southeastern Theological Seminary’s David Jones for attempting to cast out Junia’s femininity by reducing it to a clerical error.
Jones is open about his motives for trying to erase Junia’s womanhood in an article posted by The Council for Biblical Manhood and Womanhood. If he cannot do away with the exemplary female apostle Junia, the seminary he serves may have to revise the fundamentalist/no-women-pastors theological views it teaches to students and requires teaching professors to endorse. Jones writes:
If it is indeed the proper understanding of this obscure verse, egalitarian scholars are provided with one instance in Scripture where a woman is called an apostle — and a prominent apostle no less, who may have planted churches throughout the Roman world and exercised governing authority over them. It challenges the traditional belief in an all-male apostolate, as well as the implication that complementarians have drawn from it, namely, that women should not exercise pastoral authority over men.
Burleson winnows Jones’ complex review of arguments down to a single, keystone conclusion. Burleson quotes [correctly] from Jones:
(T)he important papyrus P46, along with several other less important manuscripts and versions, reads Ioulian. Ioulian is a feminine name, equivalent to our Julia. If this reading is to be preferred, then Paul is definitely referring here to a sister in Christ and not a brother. It is unlikely that this reading is original, however … It is most likely that the scribe who copied P46 inadvertently transposed “Julia” from verse fifteen. (emphasis mine).
Thus Jones argues that the view of Junia (or “Julia”) as a woman is the consequence of a scribal error in Papyri 46.
Jones has strained forth a fragile interpretation of the inerrant text. It is no dishonor to Jones but a matter of fact to note that he is a signed-on-the-dotted line defender of the Danvers Statement on Biblical Manhood and Womanhood and the Chicago Statement on Biblical Inerrancy.
A successful argument like his may be required to keep the latter from unhorsing the former and for a time reducing two SBC theological seminaries to incoherence. Indeed, we feel Burleson has gently pointed out to us a pair of already riderless horses.
Emily Douglas writes for The Nation:
At Change.org, Jen Nedeau pointed out that even women who currently have employer-based insurance that does cover abortion care (and 87 percent of employer-based plans do) may ultimately be affected. “Since the plan for the uninsured is designed to open up to everyone over time, including large employers, it is likely that women will lose access to abortion coverage as part of any health insurance plan available for purchase,” Nedeau explains.
In the Stupak amendment, the exceptions to the coverage ban read as follows: rape, incest or “where a woman suffers from a physical disorder, physical injury, or physical illness that would, as certified by a physician, place the woman in danger of death.” The Center for American Progress’s Jessica Arons writes, “Given insurance companies’ dexterity in denying claims, we can predict what they’ll do with that language.” And in case you wonder what that leaves out entirely: “Cases that are excluded: where the health but not the life of the woman is threatened by the pregnancy, severe fetal abnormalities, mental illness or anguish that will lead to suicide or self-harm, and the numerous other reasons women need to have an abortion.”
Happy about all of this? Careful how hard you dance.
Or if you’re too busy for information treasure hunts, just watch the video.
You can still have a sillystuff snack. Pure, unadulterated junk: