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How I Changed My Mind about Women in Leadership Paperback – 15 Oct 2010


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Product details

  • Paperback: 272 pages
  • Publisher: Zondervan (15 Oct 2010)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 0310293154
  • ISBN-13: 978-0310293156
  • Product Dimensions: 15.2 x 1.9 x 22.9 cm
  • Average Customer Review: 3.8 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (4 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Bestsellers Rank: 434,516 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)

Product Description

How I Changed My Mind About Women in Leadership Well-known evangelical leaders from a broad range of denominational affiliations and ethnic diversity share their surprising journeys from a restrictive view about women in leadership to an open, inclusive view that recognizes a full shared partnership of leadership in the home and in the ministries of the church based on gifts not gender. Full description

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Most Helpful Customer Reviews

6 of 7 people found the following review helpful By David Webster on 6 Jun 2012
Format: Kindle Edition Verified Purchase
This book is very helpful in filling in the personal journeys that leaders have undertaken in their transition to a more egalitarian stance on the roles of men and women in the church. It is a great suppplement to the studied approach of other books that focus in more detail on the exegesis of scripture. So much is involved personally and there are so many implications for church life and ministry so it is both heart warming and encouraging to see how others have come to terms with the transition. Easy to read with good chapter length and a variety of stories. Thoroughly recommend it.
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2 of 4 people found the following review helpful By Cjbevan on 15 Mar 2014
Format: Paperback Verified Purchase
This was bought by me partly in a forlorn hope that someone would nail a conclusive argument so I could accept it happily, but otherwise so I could see how people in favour of this were thinking and talking. I wanted to know so that when discussing this rationally (which is very rare indeed) I could do so in an informed and responsive manner, and not at crossed purposes (which I have noticed is also common) with whosoever wanted to do so.

Leadership is a broad term, and nowhere does this book attempt to describe it. Appointment of church leaders was not in Scripture based upon spiritual gifts in the same a way as prophets and apostles, but the requirements stated in the epistles are those of character and maturity. The Amazon book description which bases its premise on gifts is indicative of the experiential theology which follows in the book. This is a book about feelings, which are irrefutable in that one cannot prove the inner feelings of anyone about anything, and suits our current post-modern, relativist, subjectivist zeitgeist. Of course, relativism and subjectivism are by their nature transient and mutable, so one might reasonably expect conclusions drawn so to also be transient and mutable; it would posit transience and mutability as somehow inevitable, and possibly indicative of truth, perhaps under the guise of authenticity. It is a book about a theology of experience, or as Barth might prefer, an anthropology of experience.
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By Amazon Customer on 18 Oct 2014
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Excellent thought provoking book
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1 of 3 people found the following review helpful By AlfieTom on 22 April 2013
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I had been looking for a book to explain this tricky theological issue for a while, and found the short reviews by a number of scholars to be an excellent aproach. Thought provoking and very convincing I would encourage all from 'consevative' church and other backgrounds to read this to help re-evalauate what the Bible really says and how we should be practically embracing and using the talents of all followers today.
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Most Helpful Customer Reviews on Amazon.com (beta)

Amazon.com: 26 reviews
66 of 69 people found the following review helpful
The most enthusiastic five star I've given so far 17 Jan 2011
By Lil' me - Published on Amazon.com
Format: Paperback Verified Purchase
I am a female freshman in college and have studied the egalitarian/complementarian debate for over a year. I've read a lot of literature coming from many different backgrounds, even reading the original Greek of the New Testament for my own research.

Beyond a doubt, this book has truly cleared up the whole debate for me. I purchased a version to put on my Kindle, and I was so impressed I bought the paper book version to give to my searching friends. Regardless of what persuasion of the gender debate you come from, this book will be a gem. Not only did this book strength my believe in gender equality, women being fully engaged in Christ's ministry beside men but gave me a fresh view of what the gospel means. It has taught me on a deeper level what it means for a man to love his wife the way Christ loves the Church, and how radical to the core the gospel is for those who have no voice. This book did not make me fall in love with egalitarianism. It made me fall in love with God. This is a must-read for any believer who has struggled with gender roles in the Church and wants to find a way to serve the Church freely.
47 of 52 people found the following review helpful
Giftings of women 14 Nov 2010
By Joel Holtz - Published on Amazon.com
Format: Paperback
Whether you're a complimentarian or egalitarian, this book will bless you and challenge you to dig deeper into God's word.

This collection of some well known evangelicals, Tony Campolo, Bill and Lynne Hybels, and John Ortberg to name just a few, presents some very compelling arguments for the more "inclusive" view of women in leadership roles, both at home and in the church.

Two of the most compelling chapters are chapters 14 and 15, written by John and Nancy Ortberg and Cornelius Plantinga, respectively. Perhaps the most brilliant chapter in the entire book is I. Howard Marshall's, THE GOSPEL DOES NOT CHANGE BUT OUR PERCEPTION OF IT MAY NEED REVISION.

In chapter 18, Ron Sider astutely points out that in Paul's greetings written in Romans 16, he mentions more women co-workers than men. (pg.228)

Other contributors point out the fact that despite Paul instructing women to be silent in his letter to the Corinthians, he also instructs those women who prophesy to cover their heads.. the problem then becomes, how can you prophesy silently?

The most touching chapter in the book comes from Gilbert Bilezikian, who writes about the Armenian genocide from the early 1900's in chapter 3.

I'm probably still not a full fledged egalitarian.

But after reading this book, I'm alot closer to becoming one.
18 of 20 people found the following review helpful
Touching articles 16 Dec 2010
By Donald Byron Johnson - Published on Amazon.com
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This is a wonderful collection of articles written from the heart about how some evangelical Christians went from believing that the Bible taught a male church hierarchy to believing that women can also be ministers in church. Some of the testimonies are very heart wrenching. As I was reading the Spirit several times emphasized some points the authors were making as very relevant in my personal life.

If you have been taught that male church hierarchy is the ONLY way to read the Bible faithfully, have some questions, and are wondering if there is a different way forward in your faith, then this book can be a glorious way to see what God is doing and can help heal you as God did heal many of the authors.
16 of 18 people found the following review helpful
Understand Where Egalitarians are Coming From 22 May 2012
By Dan - Published on Amazon.com
Format: Paperback Verified Purchase
I am not all the way through this book, but have read enough to gain a positive impression of its form and content and to comment on its purpose and effectiveness. But first, a little about me:

I am an evangelical church attender who sat under complementarian church teaching (no women in pastoral leadership) for four years, but recently I have started attending a church that is egalitarian in its outlook (women teaching and preaching). The first time I sat under one of the women preaching there, my instinct was to leave the auditorium ("This isn't right...the Bible forbids it.") However, I ended up staying and listening, and I am glad I did. In fact, by the end of the sermon, I was tearing up. Clearly this woman was a powerful preacher. My criticism of her ministry seemed foolish.

The form of the book is to present story after story of ministry leaders and theologians whose minds were gradually changed about women in leadership. The accounts are not technical, but personal: honest testimonies about a change of convictions. Attention is paid to theology (analysis of favorable and challenging bible passages), but not too much. The affect is more like having lunch or coffee with the various authors than like taking a seminary class.

The book is effective in terms of what it intends to do. Those who attend churches where women are not allowed to teach and preach may not have the opportunity to meet and talk with someone who holds the egalitarian position. This book provides the opportunity. In the run of its pages, the reader becomes acquainted with real people who have come to believe that women have a place in ministry and to study a few justifications of this belief. Thereby, the egalitarian position becomes less "other," foreign, stigmatized, etc.

After reading 3/4 of the book, am I fully convinced that women should be teaching and preaching? Not quite. I think will have to read another volume or two that delves into Scriptural analysis a little more carefully. However, my heart has changed enough on this issue not to be embarrassed when a female teacher speaks at my church. I will be able to respect her commitment to Christ and gift to teach. I will also be able to understand some of the reasons why the senior pastor allows her to preach as a member of the church staff.

In closing, let me bring up the example of the Apostle Paul, whose letters play a major role in complementarian arguments. Time and again, Paul was forced to defend his ministry: he associated with Gentiles, he was "small of stature," he was not a great rhetorician, he was condemned as a criminal, he wasn't one of the original Apostles, he preached grace, etc. But Paul had the substance of an Apostle of Christ despite appearances to the contrary. He was called by God. Such is the case of many women in ministry. Although they do not have the "form" of a man, they have the power and calling of God. That is what mattered in the case of Paul, and, perhaps, it is what God most cares about.
16 of 18 people found the following review helpful
It's about interpreting correctly, not situations 17 Feb 2011
By Ruth-Ann McKellin - Published on Amazon.com
Format: Paperback Verified Purchase
This book is a marvelous compilation of (primarily) men changing their minds about women in (church) leadership because of their experiences. That's nice.

What is truly enlightening is stepping through the Bible passages with Dr. Bilezikian, the great forerunner in the discussion of women in the church. His book, Beyond Sex Roles: What the Bible Says about a Woman's Place in Church and Family is a classic from 1985 and thoroughly dissects and analyzes the whole picture of women in the church, not just the few passages that are often bantered about and cause such dissention. Dr. B presents the best scholarly work and grapples with the positions of those who agree and those who disagree.

In this book, Dr. B presents his very personal walk through the issue of control and submission. His story gets to the heart of what women in the church have experienced. The extrapolation of how unquestioned control can destroy makes the topic bigger than petty discussions. His story in this book brought tears to my eyes.

Reading this book highlighted for me how far I have come from my conservative upbringing to 1985 to now. What a journey!
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