Over the past day I've been getting a number of comments in support of Dr. Wil Gafney, an Associate Professor of Hebrew and Old Testament at The Lutheran Theological Seminary at Philadelphia, an ELCA Seminary. The people writing recently found a blog I wrote back in May regarding a blog written by Dr. Gafney where she posted a picture of Jesus as a female. (read my blog here) Those who commented thought the picture was great. They expressed that Dr. Gafney is a wonderful professor and attempted to justify what she did and wrote. Many of them justified the female Jesus picture by pointing to the verse where Jesus says, “Jerusalem, Jerusalem, you who kill the prophets and stone those sent to you, how often I have longed to gather your children together, as a hen gathers her chicks under her wings, and you were not willing.” - Matt. 23:37. Somehow, because Jesus referenced a female chicken, these people think Jesus was a woman.
Some of the comments I received:
From an ELCA pastor – Dr. Gafney's “. . . teaching and preaching build up the faith and instill a deep interest in knowing more about our Scriptures, something you sadly know nothing about. Go and educate yourself.”
From another ELCA pastor - “Do you honestly have so little imagination that you cannot see that God is greater than gender, color or race? Your God is too small, too white and too male as far as I can tell.”
“I am so glad that ELCA pastors in training are being taught by Dr. Gafney. Too few seminarians are learning robust feminist and womanist theologies . . .”
“I think Dr. Gafney is one of our most gifted and prophetic voices in our church.”
“It troubles me that my beloved church may actually have paid for your education which you are now abusing in order to propagate such flawed and hateful statements. Shame shame on you.”
“Clearly the author of this reflection is at best novice and at worst ignorant of how social realities impact theological reflection. Please spend time doing something more productive than objecting to the scholastic innovation that comes from Dr. Gafney.”
“I think the Christa image is beautiful and thought-provoking.”
“The Rev. Dr. Gafney opens up, by her meticulous scholarship, access to images of God that are not only scriptural but deeply needed in a world that is increasingly polarized by racist, sexist and homophobic agendas.”
Most of the people who support Dr. Gafney's female Jesus picture are liberals who warp Christianity and Scripture to their own liking so much so that many of them do not even worship the God of the Bible anymore. In their lost-ness, they would likely still sing Dr. Gafney's praises even in view of the professor's belief that Asherah, a Canaanite goddess, is the Holy Spirit. (see here) I'm not joking. As you can see, that is what she believes. Is this thinking and foundation for teaching “scholastic innovation” and “meticulous scholarship?” No. It's heresy! People in the ELCA need to know what is happening in their church and what their leaders are teaching.
8/8/2013 03:42:43 am
I would call this "Defending Stupidity." The Feminist Movement probably goes back to the caves, but let's say, for simplicity's sake, that it began during the French Revolution or WWII (Rosie the Riveter).
Alan L. Baglien
8/9/2013 08:58:36 am
yes, the Bishop of MT Synod, and she thinks she is Jesus Christ!
8/8/2013 04:49:35 am
All my life I was of the opinion that the "behavior" of Jesus Christ and what He did and what He taught is the model for both male and female behavior each being called to the individuals God given gifts. The gift of teaching, healing, administration, exhortation, etc. We are all called to follow Him, Jesus, the True Son of God, the Triune God, Father, Son, and Holy Spirit. Why does the denomination work so hard to prove otherwise? It is absolutely astounding!
8/8/2013 01:05:25 pm
I suspect that some of the ELCA pastors who defend Dr. Gafney do so because they accept the heresy of Docetism, which teaches that Jesus was not really human, but merely masqueraded as such. To a Docetist it makes no difference whether you depict Jesus as male or female because, being not human, he was neither.
8/9/2013 08:01:50 am
Consider their hateful, misinformed slander of you as part of your suffering along with Christ. The saints must endure such persecution, as did Christ himself, for speaking the truth. Don't let their threats and taunts deter from proclaiming the Word. Maybe even those poor tainted souls will hear it one day.
Carl W Baggett Jr
8/9/2013 07:25:11 pm
8/10/2013 03:38:23 am
I think we have to ask the questions: What are Dr. Gafney's motives? What is her agenda? Is she trying to discover truth in Scripture to move the church forward, or is she pushing a social agenda, namely Feminism? Everyone knows that God the Father has no gender, but God the Son came to Earth as a man.
Carl W Baggett Jr
8/14/2013 05:07:40 pm
I agree with you, Kathy. I was just using a little sarcasm to point out that the ELCA takes liberties with Scripture to bolster their agendas. Is Jesus talking about His identity or illustrating how He wants to treat His creation? It's obviously the latter. Hence my point, sometime metaphors are clear in intent, and this is one of them.
8/10/2013 08:47:15 am
I wonder how brother Martin would respond to the feminizing of Jesus Christ? I suspect he would throw his ink bottle at Doctor Gafney.
8/10/2013 10:54:42 am
Heretics of a feather indignantly harrumph together when a sister's feminista-first Bible revisionism is exposed in all its barrenness.
8/12/2013 12:21:15 pm
"The time is coming when people will not endure sound teaching, but having itching ears they will accumulate for themselves teachers to suit their own likings, and will turn away from listening to the truth and wander into myths." (2 Timothy 4:3-4).
8/19/2013 02:13:56 pm
I have been a frequent reader of Exposing the ELCA for a couple years and appreciate the news hereon and the comments which have increased over time also. I am not sure we are at the time where itching ears will actively pursue teachers to tell them what they want to hear, but instead seem to be in a time where the present teachers subtly mix familiarity with their respective agenda. I was accused by one such for posting a "diatribe" on my blog and being "judgmental" of the church at large for ignoring its Jewish roots or even informing the attendees of Hebrew words for faith and what they mean. Sorry, I cannot blindly march to the ELCA this and that but have always been the type to speak up in respectable ways when something appears out of sync and the ELCA fits that bill today. Justice alone would be a good example. Just my thoughts.
Your comment will be posted after it is approved.
Leave a Reply.
Prove all things; hold fast that which is good.
1 Thessalonians 5:21
Former ELCA seminary student and former ELCA member who is fed up with the ELCA's consistent mockery of God's Word.
If you have been helped and blessed by Exposing the ELCA's ministry, please help us continue to proclaim the truth of God's Word to ELCA members who need to hear it.
Give online by clicking the "donate" button below:
Have nothing to do with the fruitless deeds of darkness, but rather expose them. - Ephesians 5:11