The Divide That Is There by S. M. Hutchens

The Divide That Is There

S. M. Hutchens on Egalitarian Christianity

Reduced to essentials, my critique (see Symposium, Touchstone 12.3, May/June 1999) of the Christian Women’s Declaration was that its call for cooperation in evangelism and church renewal was futile, or nearly so. This is because the theological and practical divide between its signatories who believe women can be ordained to the pastoral or presbyterial offices and those who don’t is too wide to accommodate cooperation in efforts requiring close agreement on what the gospel is, and what therefore success in its promulgation would look like.

I knew this assertion would sound radical and indigestible, so I summoned C. S. Lewis to my help, for this is just what he says, in so many gentle words, in his little essay “Priestesses in the Church?” There he makes it clear that a church with female presbyters does not have the appearance of being Christian at all. (His duplicity with the tiresome and unreasonable Hutchens seems to have been overlooked by my critics.) The institution, in other words, is foreign to Christianity, analogous to the substitution of a circle for the cross as its principal symbol. Those who advance it have misunderstood the gospel at a fundamental level.

THIS ARTICLE ONLY AVAILABLE TO SUBSCRIBERS.
FOR QUICK ACCESS:


S. M. Hutchens is a Touchstone senior editor.

Print &
Online Subscription

Get six issues (one year) of Touchstone PLUS full online access including pdf downloads for only $39.95. That's only $3.34 per month!

Online
Subscription

Get a one-year full-access subscription to the Touchstone online archives for only $19.95. That's only $1.66 per month!

bulk subscriptions

Order Touchstone subscriptions in bulk and save $10 per sub! Each subscription includes 6 issues of Touchstone plus full online access to touchstonemag.com—including archives, videos, and pdf downloads of recent issues for only $29.95 each! Great for churches or study groups.

Transactions will be processed on a secure server.


more on ministry from the online archives

32.4—July/August 2019

Pastor Prime

on a Steady Presence in an Unsteady World by Preston Jones

33.5—September/October 2020

Killing Homicide

on Missing Fathers & Redemption in Prison by Bob Perry

32.1—January/February 2019

Role Reversals

Sex, Women's Ordination & the Rejection of Hierarchy & Equality by James A. Altena


more from the online archives

32.4—July/August 2019

Image- Bearers for God

Does Biblical Language for Man Matter? by Stephen F. Noll

32.5—September/October 2019

Peter's Sword

by Patrick Henry Reardon

18.10—December 2005

A Mighty Child

on an Apostle’s Encounter with the Son’s Children by Anthony Esolen

calling all readers

Please Donate

"There are magazines worth reading but few worth saving . . . Touchstone is just such a magazine."
—Alice von Hildebrand

"Here we do not concede one square millimeter of territory to falsehood, folly, contemporary sentimentality, or fashion. We speak the truth, and let God be our judge. . . . Touchstone is the one committedly Christian conservative journal."
—Anthony Esolen, Touchstone senior editor

Support Touchstone

00