Random Thoughts on Gender, Based on a Small Sample Size

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I had the privilege yesterday, along with the other elders of Second Church, of spending the afternoon and evening (before and after evening worship) hearing professions of faith from applicants for membership in our church.  As is usual for a city church, it was an incredibly diverse group and almost half of them are joining by profession of faith.  Among them were two young couples (early to mid 20's), who fit a mold that I increasingly observe.  First, they are very theologically motivated and speak with great doctrinal intensity.  Second, feeling welcomed and accepted is enormously important to them.  Third, they all evidence a very strong, biblical, and beautiful commitment to gender complementarity.  In separate interviews, two young wives said, "I completely agree with my husband.  But I also trust his judgment and want to following his spiritual leadership."

 

I point this out because I think there is a misconception on the gender issue, namely, that if we want to be considered relevant by the young then we cannot afford to be openly complementarian.  The great majority of my experience (and admittedly, this is among people who are attracted to a church like ours) shows exactly the opposite.  The young people I meet are fed up with the egalitarianism of their upbringing and yearn for counter-cultural biblical authenticity.  I would suggest that the examples of younger preachers like Josh Harris and Mark Driscoll, both of whom are in-your-face complementarians and draw in flocks of young people argues in the same direction.  Based on these examples, I suspect that the gender debate is much more of a baby-boomer issue.  Of course, the ultimate standard is the clear teaching of God's Word.  But if we are going to talk sociology, I want to put my two cents in.

P.S.  The young people joining our church also say that they are blown away by classic, historically-rooted (i.e. traditional) worship.  This, too, is now counter-culturally Christian.

Posted June 23, 2008 @ 9:20 AM by Rick Phillips
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