|Publication Date: 21 Mar 2019|
|Page Count: 448|
|Author: Andrew Bartlett|
|ISBN-13: 9781783599172, 9781783599189, 9781783599875|
Men and Women in Christ
Andrew Bartlett draws on his theological learning and his skills as a judge and arbitrator to offer an even-handed assessment of the debate. His analysis is thorough but accessible. He engages with advocates of each view and all the key biblical texts, weighing the available evidence and offering fresh insights. He invites the reader to move beyond complementarian and egalitarian labels and seeks progress towards healing the division.
Books on this topic are often accompanied by the sound of an author steadily grinding their axe in the background. This work is refreshingly different. Meticulous research, careful argument, objective assessment and judicious evaluation make this a significant scholarly contribution to the discussion on the role of men and women in Christ’s church. It is essential reading for all in leadership.
This is a major contribution to the debate on the place of men and women in Christian ministry. It breaks new ground and is an important read whatever view you hold.
This is a must-read for anyone considering the Bible’s teaching on the roles of men and women. It has changed some of my thinking. Using his skills as an international arbitrator and his deep theological understanding, Andrew weighs up the biblical teaching on this often contentious issue. His conclusions are fresh, illuminating, and challenging to both egalitarian and complementarian alike. Every Christian leader and serious Bible student should read and digest this book. It will go a long way to bringing greater humility and unity on the subject, which is a great need in today’s church.
Although I lean more towards a fully complementarian position, I want to commend this book because of its recognition of the importance of Scripture in Christian belief and practice, its desire to explain Scripture in its biblical context, its scholarly quality, and its promotion of good relationships between Christians who have divergent views, with objective assessment and without personal criticism.
This book’s consideration of male and female relations according to Scripture is a model of clarity, scholarship and summary. It is in every sense a judicious work, which helps to resolve some contentious issues of biblical interpretation. Its aim is thoroughly constructive: to promote mutual understanding and unity among those who believe in and wish to be faithful to Holy Scripture.
In this remarkable book, Bartlett begins where any scholar and thinker should begin: in humility. He wisely stresses the biblical importance of unity amongst believers. He then follows the path of sound biblical exegesis, appropriate attention to the existing literature, and a fresh non-biased perspective to arrive at sound conclusions with strong supporting evidence. He admits where there are difficulties in interpretation (whether historical or textual), but also helps to ‘hack through’ some of these biblical and theological ‘thickets.’ This book is an excellent addition to the canon of literature on what the Bible says about men and women. The summaries and guiding questions at the end of each chapter make the text accessible to the average reader, as well as a great resource for group or academic discussion.
Global communications are driving social change in East and South Asia. This increases the danger of importing Western theories unchallenged. I hope the insightful exegesis in this book will help Asian theologians and church leaders to engage with the Scripture without getting caught in the tramlines of the complementarian/egalitarian debate.
In over 45 years of involvement in Bible translation I have frequently grappled with the interpretive issues dealt with in this book. Faithful translation should be accurate and unbiased, allowing the original text to speak for itself. This is the ideal, but translators are human. Cultural biases have affected English translations of texts concerning women. The author’s professional background helps him take a clear and refreshingly new look at the key texts. With careful scholarship and sound reasoning he resolves some important translation issues. I would recommend Bible translators take note of this book.
An enjoyable and fascinating read. Andrew Bartlett writes in an engaging, highly readable style. He does not press his own views home but models a gracious openness; he ends each section with questions that are focused on biblical interpretation, personal reflection and practical application to church life. The book benefits from clear summary sections which ensure that, despite the complexity of some of its detail, the reader does not lose the main focus of the argument. This book is stronger for the fact that it does not pretend to have all the answers, but by reading it you will accompany a writer on his quest for understanding and you will encounter with him the twists and turns of his journey of discovery.
This book is very thorough, leaving no stone unturned. Some of the ‘stones’ certainly needed to be turned!
As an arbitrator I look for careful assessment of evidence and contextually-sensitive reasoning. This book has both.
An important contribution to a debate on which all sides need to listen carefully to each other with humility and a shared commitment to Scripture.
Whether you hold a complementarian or an egalitarian viewpoint, this book challenges us to read the Bible with fresh eyes. It is hard not to read the Bible through our frameworks thus backing up our personal positions and prejudices while writing off others who hold a contrary opinion. Andrew Bartlett is seeking to re-frame this contentious debate, which requires his readers to take careful note and read again familiar passages. He writes with both humility and meticulousness which points out inconsistencies with both frameworks. You may not agree with all of his conclusions, but his reasoning should be carefully considered. At the very least this book gives us much food for thought as we seek to continually reform our understanding in the light of God’s word.