WIC/CE&P, Covenant, Westminster, Tenth, and ACE preacher and speaker holds membership in feminist organization...
NOTE FROM TIM: I've just taken the liberty of changing a couple sentences and adding some quotes to clarify this piece. So if you already read this post in its first day on the blog, please read it again. Having two writers contributing to this piece allowed a couple things through we'd normally have caught. They've now been corrected.
(David and Tim, w/thanks to Dave) Search for "Langberg" on the Christians for Biblical Equality (CBE) web site and fifty-seven links are returned offering products produced by Westminster Theological Seminary adjunct professor Diane Langberg. (Here and here are sample pages.)
Check out CBE's directory for a recommended counselor in Pennsylvania and you will find Calvary Presbyterian Church (PCA) member Diane Langberg.
Several years ago, controversy erupted within the Presbyterian Church in America over whether or not a certain woman actually preached at Covenant Theological Seminary. The controversy came to a head at the 29th General Assembly when Covenant's president, Dr. Bryan Chapell, explained the chapel address had mostly not been preaching although some parts strayed into "sermonic (and) some applicatory material." Bryan Chapell explained to the Assembly:
That Diane Langberg had been told ahead of time what the standards were for her speaking during the chapel time;
That after she spoke at Covenant Seminary, Diane Langberg received a letter reminding her of the standards, and expressing concern that those standards had not been followed; and
That the administration of Covenant Seminary met with students to explain the situation and to assure the seminary community that what had happened was not according to the standards they were committed to upholding.
Note that the chapel message at the root of the controversy was given by Dr. Diane Langberg. Yet, despite her being at the center of this controversy...
Two years ago, the Christian education arm of the Presbyterian Church in America, Christian Education and Publications (CE&P), held its 2006 International Women in the Church Conference in Atlanta. The three women employed to teach the 4,000 assembled women of the PCA? Joni Eareckson Tada, Paige Benton Brown, and Dr. Diane Langberg.
Again, at Women in the Church's (WIC) 2007 Leadership Training Conference Dr. Diane Langberg was a plenary speaker.
Diane Langberg was principal speaker at Tenth Presbyterian (PCA) Church's 2008 TenthWomen Conference.
And this same Diane Langberg is featured speaker at the Alliance of Confessing Evangelicals' Princeton Regional Conference on Reformed Theology--together with Al Mohler and Don Carson.
Christians for Biblical Equality lists the following qualifications for counselors they commend: "Christians for Biblical Equality... presents these names as those in agreement with CBE’s Statement of Faith and as active CBE members."
What does membership in CBE indicate concerning Dr. Langberg's doctrinal commitments? This is how CBE describes it:
By joining CBE, you stand with Christians around the world who promote the biblical truth of equality as a community. CBE serves its members by providing resources on what the Bible says about gender, as well as the scriptural mandates regarding justice. CBE members are extraordinary advocates for Christ's liberation from human limitations imposed by gender, ethnicity or class. The overwhelming majority of CBE members tell us that passion for the cause compelled them to join our organization.
What is "the biblical truth of equality" that Dr. Langberg is committed to promoting?
Again, this statement of CBE's doctrinal commitments:
The Bible teaches that woman and man were created for full and equal partnership. The word “helper” (ezer) used to designate woman in Genesis 2:18 refers to God in most instances of Old Testament usage. Consequently the word conveys no implication whatsoever of female subordination or inferiority.
The Bible teaches that man and woman were co-participants in the Fall: Adam was no less culpable than Eve.
The Bible teaches that the rulership of Adam over Eve resulted from the Fall and was therefore not a part of the original created order.
The Bible teaches that, in the New Testament economy, women as well as men exercise the prophetic, priestly and royal functions. Therefore, the few isolated texts that appear to restrict the full redemptive freedom of women must not be interpreted simplistically and in contradiction to the rest of Scripture, but their interpretation must take into account their relation to the broader teaching of Scripture and their total context.
The Bible teaches that husbands and wives are heirs together of the grace of life and that they are bound together in a relationship of mutual submission and responsibility.
In the church, spiritual gifts of women and men are to be recognized, developed and used in serving and teaching ministries at all levels of involvement: as (elder) board members, and in pastoral care, teaching, preaching, and worship.
Diane Langberg clearly practices what she preaches. In the midst of a vacillating, temporizing PCA where seminary chapel addresses contain unfortunate "sermonic elements," women are invited to speak and preach to men at conferences because conferences aren't churches and teaching isn't preaching; in a time and place where horses in dining rooms are called dogs because, after all, horses don't belong in dining rooms; Dr. Langberg's commitments remain bracingly clear and consistent. The Reformed and Evangelical world in which she has embedded herself (and which has embraced her) may play word games about why Langberg preaches alongside them and from their pulpits, but make no mistake: Such games are essential to victory in CBE's playbook.
Either the leaders of the Alliance of Confessing Evangelicals, our seminaries, and denominational agencies are wrong about Dr. Langberg and we are right Or, together with Christians for Biblical Equality, Carolyn Custis James, CBE founder Alice Matthews, you and I are wrong and the leaders of ACE, our seminaries, and denominational agencies are right.
Which is it?
It's time those continuing to turn their pulpits over to Dr. Diane Langberg show their cards.