Die ‘christelik-sosiaal feministiese’ rebellie in die GKSA

Die ‘christelik-sosiaal feministiese’ rebellie in die GKSA

“Die gesagsorde in die ampswerk wat God gestel het deur die subordinasie van die vrou, is geen minderwaardigstelling nie: ‘Dit is nie vernederende knegverhoudings nie, nie ’n afgeforseerde diens nie; maar dit is egte liefde met die totale vryheid en saligheid, ware oorgawe van die eie lewe aan dié een waarvoor ons beroep is tot wie ons moet leef; egter nie só dat dit ’n willekeurige gelykheid begeer nie, maar só, dat die gemeenskap daardeur bewerk word, dat die oor- en ondergeskiktheid wat God bestem het, bewaar word en ’n heers- en dien, ’n leidinggewend en gehoorsaam-wees tussen beide bestaan.’ … Die Middelaarswerk van Christus hef die gesagsorde tussen man en vrou nie op nie, maar bevestig dit… Die vrou moet haar aan God se orde onderwerp om Christus wil, Paulus ‘is bevrees dat hierdie ontkenning die ingrypende gevolg kan hê dat die hoofskap van Christus nie meer ernstig opgeneem sal word nie…’” – prof. dr. JJ van der Walt, Christus as Hoof van die Kerk en die Presbiteriale Kerkregering)

Ek plaas hier, met erkenning van die bron, prof. Gert (Jorrie) Jordaan se voorwoord van dr. Simon Jooste se boek, Embodiment and Power: The Essential Nature of Office in the Identity Politics Debate (Potchefstroom: CBJF, 2022; beklemtonings bygevoeg).

In recent history, Protestant churches worldwide had to withstand insistent pressure towards  allowing female members into the offices of elders and pastors (WIO). Some churches have succumbed to the pressure, but most churches are standing firm, such as the RCSA with its decision of 2016 not to open up the offices of pastor and elder to women.

The decision was followed by various appeals, none with any success. These appeals removed any doubt that the matter of WIO or not is indeed essential in the church. Furthermore, the unsuccessful appeals attested that arguments for WIO have no Scriptural basis.

Yet the proponents of WIO are continuing their onslaught. In a few churches, it even resulted in a kind of rebellion, where female elders were appointed regardless of the Synod decision.

Against this background, the question arises:

What is the driving force behind the WIO proponents’ sustained campaign?

How do they justify their insistence on WIO?

Based on such questions, the author did an in-depth study of the WIO movement, its ideological roots and its allies and published his findings in this book. Accordingly, the book provides a very informative discussion and evaluation of predominantly Christian feminism with its drive towards gender equality and its affiliation to postmodern identity politics.

In some places, the reader will encounter what may be called difficult reading material, for the author had to outline and clarify some philosophical and theological terminology, as used by the movements in question.

The author was also obliged to analyse and explain the illogical and bizarre arguments and claims as often presented by these movements. These expositions enable the reader to see where the WIO movement comes from and where it is heading. The information thus provided by the author clarifies the WIO campaign of our time and sheds excellent light on the rise of other identity movements, such as LGBTQAI+, in modern-day society.

In the book, liberalism, feminism, postmodernism and their offspring are exposed as part of a power struggle in society. In this power struggle, their strategy is to deny the existence of any objective truth, leaving us with nothing else than subjective experience. As a result, the truth, as revealed by God in his creation and the Bible, is not only obscured but annihilated.

Due to this rejection of truth, WIO proponents are no longer impressed by arguments objectively based on factual truths as revealed in the Bible. They instead base their opinions on social experience, especially their experience of society as being male-dominated.

Unable to win the argument on Biblical grounds, WIO proponents often retreat by claiming that the WIO debate is not essential in the church. However, this book makes a strong case for the essential nature of the WIO debate. It is essential primarily because God has chosen to form and reveal his church as the body of Christ, and that to the example of the mutual relationship between man and woman and their respective responsibilities that they received from Him.

Hence, the book’s central thesis is that God orders his church to make Christ present through male-ordained Word-and-sacrament ministry.

This book, appropriately titled “Embodiment and power: The essential nature of office in the identity politics debate”, proved to be a richly rewarding endeavour.

I cannot do otherwise than recommend it to everyone who has been troubled not only by the WIO debate of our time but also by other alarming developments in modern-day society.

Dr Rev. Gert (Jorrie) Jordaan

(RCSA Faculty of Theology, New Testament, Emeritus)

Sien hier meer artikels oor VIDA/WIO.

Dr. Simon Jooste se boek is hier beskikbaar:

– Available for purchase in Amazon Kindle format here

– Available for purchase from the Admin Buro:

Tel.  +27 18 297 3986, Fax.  +27 18 293 1042

E-mail: bestellings@gksa.co.za

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