[Vision2020] Peter Leithart's View of Women

J Ford privatejf32 at hotmail.com
Sat Sep 23 11:27:55 PDT 2006

Peter Leithart's take on women's role in the church - does Dougie-boy know 
you wrote this, Peter?

"In an intriguing book published some years ago, historian David Noble 
described the origins of modern science among medieval monks and friars who 
lived in what Noble called "a world without women." Though the book promoted 
every trendy academic fad existing in 1992 and was rife with contradictions 
(women are no different from men, yet it is tragic that women were excluded 
from the development of modern science), the questions Noble raises about 
the development of modern science are important. After all, the fact that 
most early scientists were celibates who did not live with women and had 
comparatively superficial relations with women must have had some effect on 
the way they perceived the world. To put it in extreme terms: Modern science 
developed by a human race with one half of its brain tied behind its back.

Something of the same can be said for the development of Christian theology, 
which was also pursued for most of a millennium is a world without women. 
Christians, who believe in fundamental sexual difference, have even more 
reason than some feminists to regard this purely male theological practice 
with suspicion. It's no accident that two of the greatest and most 
innovative of modern theologians, von Balthasar and Barth, had close 
associations with women theologians. No doubt most theology will continue to 
be written be men, and I believe Scripture requires that the church be ruled 
by men. But women's contribution to theology is essential to the healthy 
future development of the church. As evangelicals become more attuned to the 
Scriptural teaching on sexual difference and the proper role of men and 
women in family and church, we must avoid the errors of the bast. We cannot 
afford the mistake of attempting to renew theology or the church in another 
world without women."

J  :]

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