Byrd's "Recovering From Biblical Manhood and Womanhood"

mvdm

Puritan Board Junior
I am a member of Genevan Commons, a group that has over 500 members, consisting of many ministers, elders, and women in good standing from the URC, OPC, RPCNA, and PCA, none of which have I ever seen promoting FV errors. Painting the whole group as "arrogant" and as "militant FV" is simply rank slander.

That group, Geneva Commons, is a militant FV group. If you think Doug Wilson is arrogant, check that group out.
 

BottleOfTears

Puritan Board Freshman
Americans are funny, and Christian Americans are no exception:

Middle Eastern/Far Eastern gender norms/patriarchy = cultural traditions to respect/work around.

Deep South/Far Western (e.g. Idaho) gender norms/patriarchy = ignorance and bigotry to dismantle/destroy.

:D
This is an overgeneralisation but there is some truth in it. Still, the problem is that the Middle East, the Far East, Europe, and America all have different ideas of gender norms, and very different ideas about the way the rest of society should be run. Often the trad gender roles are just a piece of the puzzle, is it really that easy to just take one piece and reject the rest?

I think that there are shared norms, and that these are in some sense grounded in gender without being arbitrary. That said, a lot of the discussions around owning guns, for example, are so foreign to someone not from the US, I think Carl Trueman was right to point out the American style of the whole thing. I find US Christians have a much greater problem with this whole thing than people here in the UK.

One thing you must remember though, is that this overthrowing of cultural norms comes from the Enlightenment originally, and much of what you Americans hold dear and count as manly comes straight from this source. The extolling of "freedom" in owning guns and using them to protect your family, and the idea that any man can rise up in the ranks by his own strength, comes from the same place. Those kind of "obvious" things aren't so obvious to the rest of us. Even the obsession with eating steak and such is rather strange to me.

Indeed, the idea that women should stay home and the men go out and work is much easier to argue as a near-absolute standard if you think that any man can try hard enough and earn a lucrative job so that only they need to work.

Basically, my point is, it's clear even from the Very American perspective that not everything "traditional" from pre-modern times is great. I think this kind of arguing is too simplistic. I can guarantee you would find things that these other countries assume are natural to be rather strange.
 

BayouHuguenot

Puritanboard Amanuensis
I am a member of Genevan Commons, a group that has over 500 members, consisting of many ministers, elders, and women in good standing from the URC, OPC, RPCNA, and PCA, none of which have I ever seen promoting FV errors. Painting the whole group as "arrogant" and as "militant FV" is simply rank slander.
Oh I am sure the lurkers probably aren't. But before I got kicked off for criticizing Wilson, I saw routine dismissing of those who have concerns over FV false teaching, not to mention slander and invective against guys like Scott Clark.
 

mvdm

Puritan Board Junior
Oh I am sure the lurkers probably aren't. But before I got kicked off for criticizing Wilson, I saw routine dismissing of those who have concerns over FV false teaching, not to mention slander and invective against guys like Scott Clark.
Brother, I'm not a lurker there. A vast number of men and women there are faithful brothers and sisters who are not lurkers. You have broad-brushed defamed them. Don't deflect the issue to silly nonsense about Scott Clark.. Just repent, apologize, and move on.
 

C. M. Sheffield

Puritan Board Senior
I've read everything else she wrote and that Trueman wrote on the subject and do not find it objectionable; quite the opposite in fact.
Well, I've read quite a bit of her blog in recent years and things she's contributed in other places. I've listened to her talks and watched/read a handful of interviews. I have also read the articles of those who both affirm and disagree with the positions she's taken. So, my observations are my own based on an intelligent assessment of the things she has written as well as the explanations of them she has given. It is not necessary to conlcude that those who disagree with us, do so from ignorance.
 
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arapahoepark

Puritan Board Graduate
Well, I've read quite a bit of her blog in recent years and things she's contributed in other places. I've listened to her talks and watched/read a handful of interviews. I have also read the articles of those who both affirm and disagree with the positions she's taken. So, my observations are my own based on an intelligent assessment of the things she has written as well as the explanations of them she has given. It is not necessary to conlcude that those who disagree with us, do so from ignorance.
Good to know. So forgive me if I haven't seen any interaction...
 

C. M. Sheffield

Puritan Board Senior
Speaking of Aimee's blog... Something I've noticed about Aimee Byrd and Rachel Miller is their defensiveness. They wrote books which were overtly polemical and then acted surprised that anyone would have the gall to disagree with them. If anyone says, blogs, or tweets a word against them, they have to respond with a tediously long blog post rebutting every one of their opponents assertions. I haven't encountered this in many other writers.

One other thing one can't help but notice is their self-promotion. Whenever they post anything online, they have an image of their book as the cover. Just go to Ref21 right now and count the number of times you see the cover of Aimee's book. It's a bit off-putting.
 

Andrew35

Puritan Board Freshman
Speaking of Aimee's blog... Something I've noticed about Aimee Byrd and Rachel Miller is their defensiveness. They wrote books which were overtly polemical and then acted surprised that anyone would have the gall to disagree with them. If anyone says, blogs, or tweets a word against them, they have to respond with a tediously long blog post rebutting every one of their opponents assertions. I haven't encountered this in many other writers.

One other thing one can't help but notice is their self-promotion. Whenever they post anything online, they have an image of their book as the cover. Just go to Ref21 right now and count the number of times you see the cover of Aimee's book. It's a bit off-putting.
That awkward moment in your MOS interview (Rachel Miller) when Carl Trueman jokingly refers to you as a "good Hegelian" for your lynchpin argument on the pendular motion of history.... :p
 
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BottleOfTears

Puritan Board Freshman
Speaking of Aimee's blog... Something I've noticed about Aimee Byrd and Rachel Miller is their defensiveness. They wrote books which were overtly polemical and then acted surprised that anyone would have the gall to disagree with them. If anyone says, blogs, or tweets a word against them, they have to respond with a tediously long blog post rebutting every one of their opponents assertions. I haven't encountered this in many other writers.

One other thing one can't help but notice is their self-promotion. Whenever they post anything online, they have an image of their book as the cover. Just go to Ref21 right now and count the number of times you see the cover of Aimee's book. It's a bit off-putting.
Are they overly defensive? I think what they are surprised about is not that people disagree with them, but rather the things some people say about them, for instance the accusation that Aimee only kicked off the ESS debate in order to sneak in feminism or some such thing into the church.

Frankly, I think the overly defensive ones are those who hear about a book being published by Aimee that they suspect they may disagree with and then jump in making noise about ulterior motives.

This often happens before books of hers have even been published, and even after by people who have never read a single page.

On the subject of responses, I usually only see them respond to say, a short article or review, with a short article of their own. That's seems to be a reasonable response.

I mean there's no number of theologians and authors online who write articles responding to articles responding to articles. Essays in theology journals are a whole other story. Try looking up what Calvin taught on union with Christ and how that relates to justification/sanctification(for instance) and you'll see what I mean.

And those would be the more reserved examples.

Not to mention people who spend all day arguing on Twitter. Aimee doesn't even tweet that much. I'm presuming you don't use Twitter, because there are much worse examples.

Moreover, if you want "defensive" there are definitely other places to look.

I really cannot see how they are an exceptional case.

Regarding their books, that seems to be rather subjective. Most Christian websites have books written by people there. I mean go to Ligonier, Grace to You, Desiring God, or TGC and count the number of books that appear. And honestly, if you are talking about a book it makes sense to have the cover as the image for the article, it's why pretty much all reviews do that.

EDIT: After having been to Ref21 (on mobile) I have seen three images of the the book cover. One from the MoS episode on the book, and two as the images for two articles, both of which were responding to reviews of the book, one of which was mostly about the book cover itself and the "yellow wallpaper" metaphor. All seem rather reasonable to me.

Honestly, it just seems like you're just looking for things to criticize. This is the reason why Aimee and Rachel get "defensive", far more time is spent on speculation about feminist conspiracies and strange criticisms like these than on their actual arguments.
 
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A.Joseph

Puritan Board Sophomore
I think Ms. Byrd could probably make the distinction between what is a cultural more and what is a biblical mandate, direct or implicit. Her work should be critiqued and corrected without harsh rebuke (or slander obviously) , unless some ill intent is proven.

Ive only heard her speak, never read a book. Does she directly challenge any biblical edict or denominational practice? Those would be the areas that can and should be assessed without malice, but compassionate critique of a member in good standing with support from specific church authorities. Let’s stay there as this is important. I think so anyway and am interested in a clear picture of where, if anywhere, she truly errs. I must acknowledge women have been forced to step up in lots of areas but I don’t think we throw the baby out with the bath water even under unusual circumstances.

She always sounds very, very nice. I don’t picture her as some angry feminist with an axe to grind.
 
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BayouHuguenot

Puritanboard Amanuensis
Don't deflect the issue to silly nonsense about Scott Clark.. Just repent, apologize, and move on.
No. The most I'll do is modify my original statement to "the ethos of the group is militantly FV and the ethos attacks godly ministers like Scott Clark."
 

BayouHuguenot

Puritanboard Amanuensis
I'll make one other concession: Geneva Commons isn't "FV" in the sense of the pure 2002-2003 conferences. The spirit of Lusk and Jordan has more or less passed from the scene. I think Neonomians or what DG Hart calls "The Obedience Boys" is a better moniker for GC.
 

SRoper

Puritan Board Graduate
Speaking of Aimee's blog... Something I've noticed about Aimee Byrd and Rachel Miller is their defensiveness. They wrote books which were overtly polemical and then acted surprised that anyone would have the gall to disagree with them. If anyone says, blogs, or tweets a word against them, they have to respond with a tediously long blog post rebutting every one of their opponents assertions. I haven't encountered this in many other writers.
There's no way for them to engage correctly. If they don't respond they are too weak and shouldn't have written their books if they weren't willing to defend them. If they respond in part their response is emotional and doesn't address the substance of the critique sufficiently. Now, apparently, a response in detail is considered overly defensive.

I mean I guess it is consistent for a certain brand of complementarian. For them the writing and defense of books is public which is the sphere of men.
 

SRoper

Puritan Board Graduate
That's cheap.
This is the brand I am referring to, from OPC Pastor Michael Spangler:

The enemy is feminism. By feminism I mean the ideology that disputes the following facts:

1. God made men stronger, and appointed them to public work, and to rule in family, church, and state. (1 Sam. 4:9; 1 Cor. 16:13; Gen. 3:19; Prov. 31:23; 1 Tim. 3:1; 1 Cor. 11:3; Eph. 5:23; 1 Tim. 3:4; 1 Tim. 2:8, 12; 3:2; Titus 1:6; Ex. 18:21; Prov. 31:23; Num. 1:2–3)

2. God made women weaker, and appointed them to domestic work, and to submit to the rule of men. (1 Peter 3:7; 1 Tim. 2:14; Prov. 31:27; 1 Tim. 2:15; 5:14; Titus 2:5; 1 Cor. 11:7–9; Eph. 5:22; 1 Cor. 14:35; Ps. 68:12; Isa. 3:12)
 

A.Joseph

Puritan Board Sophomore
This is the brand I am referring to, from OPC Pastor Michael Spangler:
Yeah, I don’t think we should isolate these matters without starting with our sin. Sin and grace has to be the starting point when speaking on all these matters. That is where the charity comes in. This should not be turned into a culture war. A. Byrd is certainly not my enemy.
 

A.Joseph

Puritan Board Sophomore
If women can't ever rule in state, there goes Good Queen Bess. It is arguable that England was at its manliest under Queen Elizabeth.
Although, women may overcompensate. I got a few Hillary Clinton quotes in mind. I do think men are better qualified for such a role, despite our record.
 

NaphtaliPress

Administrator
Staff member
This is the brand I am referring to, from OPC Pastor Michael Spangler:
Can women go to college, if so, study the sciences or a profession? I've heard of the view that says, why should they? They're to stay at home, etc.
My grandmother was a brilliant lady and got a degree in chemistry, but the year or so before she married (1905) instead of working at a pharmacy which my great grandfather would not allow (scandalous for a lady!), he had her give piano lessons for far less money. She married my grandfather who was heading to internship and became a TB doctor and never worked but raised four daughters including my mother.
 

SRoper

Puritan Board Graduate
To be clear, I don't agree with Pastor Spangler's view (my wife is a physician). I was simply demonstrating that my comment was not a cheap shot. For some, the public sphere belongs to men which raises the question if they can write books. Or if they can, on what topics can she write? Can men read them?

This is the context I see Aimee Byrd working in. It is illustrated by Pastor Spangler article, but also with things like John Piper's questions and answers. It's a frankly bizarre policing of the relations between men and women. "Rabbi, may a woman give directions to a man?"
 

C. M. Sheffield

Puritan Board Senior
To be clear, I don't agree with Pastor Spangler's view (my wife is a physician). I was simply demonstrating that my comment was not a cheap shot. For some, the public sphere belongs to men which raises the question if they can write books. Or if they can, on what topics can she write? Can men read them?

This is the context I see Aimee Byrd working in. It is illustrated by Pastor Spangler article, but also with things like John Piper's questions and answers. It's a frankly bizarre policing of the relations between men and women. "Rabbi, may a woman give directions to a man?"
I understand. Thank you for the clarification. I wouldn't disagree with the quote you provided. Though I don't know the gentleman who said it. It is too brief a quotation to know how he would say that is fleshed out practically, and there, I may disagree with some of his conclusions. But I think you are assuming too much if you believe such a view excludes the possibility of a woman writing a book review or books in general. One of my favorite writers is Anne Dutton. I have a seven volume set of her works sitting on the shelf in here in my study.

The problem, as I see it, is that statements like this are interpreted as hard and fast rules never admitting of any exception. They ought rather be understood as general principles that may have any number of legitimate exceptions in ordinary life.
 
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NaphtaliPress

Administrator
Staff member
"There is a distinction to be made between error and heresy. And between minor error and serious or even gross error. But to collapse all distinctions and to hasten to label folks like Aimee Byrd godless Jezebels strikes me as seriously failing to distinguish between things that differ. And while – again – I support every good minister’s right to critique and even challenge Mrs. Byrd, we need to steer clear of the cliff. There is also a process for transitioning an offender outwith the Visible Church, where one not only may but must be named “a heathen man and a publican.”​
Let us applaud all righteous zeal. Feminism is a cancer. Let us not be time-serving yes men. But let us also let not our “good be evil spoken of” (Rom. 14:16)."​
Good article from Michael Ives (Presbyterian Reformed Church). https://westportexperiment.com/2020/05/14/on-naming-names-in-controversy/
 

NaphtaliPress

Administrator
Staff member
I saw this comment by Bryan Peters (PRC, Columbus) who posted the article linked in the prior post, and also Todd Pruitt's response to it.
"No, it [Bryd's book] is not out and out feminism, with full scale advocacy for women's ordination, etc. But I and many other confessional ministers are concerned that Byrd has built the proposals which she does make on a foundation of thoroughly egalitarian arguments and scholarship."
"For what it's worth: I think that's a fair judgment. I understand why you hold that concern." quoted with permission.
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BayouHuguenot

Puritanboard Amanuensis
I saw this comment by Bryan Peters (PRC, Columbus) who posted the article linked in the prior post, and also Todd Pruitt's response to it.
"No, it [Bryd's book] is not out and out feminism, with full scale advocacy for women's ordination, etc. But I and many other confessional ministers are concerned that Byrd has built the proposals which she does make on a foundation of thoroughly egalitarian arguments and scholarship."
"For what it's worth: I think that's a fair judgment. I understand why you hold that concern."
View attachment 6951
I can go with that as an initial judgment.
 

Romans922

Puritan Board Professor
I don't know the history of the site, but I think Paul wrote that.
@SeanPatrickCornell The creator of the site is Seni, it's run by Seni and Paul. Seni took the post down because his pastor and I encouraged him to take it down given that 1) he's a candidate for ministry and this is something ministers should be addressing very directly; 2) it's not 'in the lane' of PP so go back to quoting dead men in an organized fashion to make a good post applied to today's church; and 3) the author was going to - in upcoming articles - draw support from Doug Wilson which his site didn't want to touch with a 10 ft pole.
 
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NaphtaliPress

Administrator
Staff member
@SeanPatrickCornell The creator of the site is Seni, it's run by Seni and Paul. Seni took the post down because his pastor and I encouraged him to take it down given that 1) he's a candidate for ministry and this is something ministers should be addressing very directly; 2) it's not 'in the lane' of PP so go back to quoting dead men in an organized fashion to make a good post applied to today's church; and 3) the author was going to - in upcoming articles - draw support from Doug Wilson which your site didn't want to touch with a 10 ft pole.
I only knew the half of it when I said this was a wise decision.
 
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