Christianity Seminar

A Report on the 2018 Fall Meeting

by Hal Taussig

The Fourth R 32-2
March/April 2019
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The fall 2018 meeting of the Christianity Seminar marked the final of its three meetings focused on gender in the first two centuries. It gave special attention to the second century and intentionally worked on overarching issues of gender in a range of emerging Christ communities and movements. Celene Lillie’s paper, “Thinking through Gender in the Second-Century Jesus Movements,” contributed significantly to the larger picture of gendered dimensions by demonstrating their multiplicity and diversity. To this end she described the different kinds of genders in four second-century documents: 1 Timothy, the Acts of Paul and Thecla, the Gospel of Mary, and On the Origin of the World. Lillie argues that in each of these texts,

Women play a prominent role, however, the position of females within these texts often situates them in stark contrast to their male “counterparts,” highlighting an array of gendered dynamics. These texts also address a wide range of issues from sexuality to celibacy, marital status to violence, suggesting a wide variety of investments and concerns within the proliferation of Jesus groups during this time period.

Lillie’s treatment of 1 Timothy showed a very conservative gendered reality. For instance, the author of 1 Timothy wrote:

I desire, then, that in every place the men should pray, lifting up holy hands without anger or argument; also that the women should dress themselves in modest clothes with respect and discretion—not with plaited hair and gold or pearls, or costly clothes, but, as fitting for women who are God-fearing, with good works. Let a woman learn in silence in full subordination. I command no woman to teach or to have authority over a man, but to be silent. For Adam was formed first, then Eve; and Adam was not deceived but the woman was deceived and became a transgressor. Yet she will be saved through childbearing, if they stand fast in faith and love and holiness with discretion.* (1 Tim 2:8–15)

Lillie comments:

These words are both prescriptive and prohibitive: women are told what to wear—“dress in modest clothes with respect and discretion”—as well as what not to wear—“plaited hair,” “gold,” “pearls,” or “costly clothes” (1 Tim 2:9). Women are allowed to “learn in silence in full submission,” but are not allowed “to teach or have authority over a man” (1 Tim 2:11–12a). Then, as if once were not enough, the text re-emphasizes the command for women to be silent. (1 Tim 2:12b)

Lillie shows how 1 Timothy’s reading of the Eden story (Gen 2:4–3:24) drives a strong patriarchal bargain and elaborates a case for the subordination of woman, citing its treatment of widows (1 Tim 5:5 –6; 5:12, 5:14 –15). Similarly,

Though women—both married and widowed—are instructed to manage their homes well, 1 Timothy is clear that they are subordinate in this, too. In prescribing and prohibiting attributes of would-be bishops, the text states men must be, “irreproachable, married only once, sober, reasonable, modest, hospitable, a good teacher, not a drunk, not violent but kindly, noncombative, not moneyloving” (3:2–3). But the pinnacle of this list comes when the letter states that the prospective bishop “must head his own household well, keeping his children submissive and respectful in every way—for if one does not know how to head his own household, how can he manage God’s assembly?” (3:4–5).

1 Timothy prescribes and prohibits similar qualities for deacons, who must be “honorable, not insincere, not indulging in too much wine, not greedy,” have faith, a clear conscience, and be blameless (3:8–10). They, of course, too, must “be married only once” and be able to “head their children and their households well” (3:12). And Lillie lays out clear reasons to see men in 1 Timothy as privileged and in control of women.

Lillie finds things quite different, however, in the Acts of Paul and Thecla. This early second-century text tells the story of teenage woman who leaves home and betrothal in order to become a healer and teacher like Paul. For this Thecla is brought to “justice” by Roman authorities, who try to burn her to death and, when that fails, to kill her with wild beasts in the arena. Although she asks Paul to baptize her so that her work as healer and teacher may be supported, Paul rebuffs her. Lillie describes how

Women and children continue to defend Thecla as she is processed in the street, and bound to a ferocious lioness who, rather than mauling her, sits and licks her feet. Both Tryphaena and Thecla appeal to God as Thecla is led into the stadium. Stripped but for a girdle as lions and bears are thrown into the ring, Thecla is rushed by a lioness who once again lays at her feet. A bear then attacks, but the lioness intercepts, killing it. Finally, a man-eating lion is let loose, but again, the lioness engages it. She kills the lion, but loses her own life in the process. More and more animals enter the arena as Thecla filled with killer seals, declaring for herself that which was denied by Paul: “In the name of Jesus Christ I baptize myself!” With a lightning flash, the seals die, and Thecla is surrounded by “a cloud of fire so that neither the wild animals could touch her, nor could she be seen naked,” (34:36). As the onslaught of animals continue, Thecla is aided by women pacifying the beasts with perfume. In a final effort to see her dead, she is bound to bulls, but her bonds are consumed by flame, and she is set free.

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Thecla is finally free to do her work, which she does for her entire life, occasionally with Paul and sometimes on her own. In some regards, Paul is portrayed as Thecla’s colleague and, in others, he seems to be a thoughtless authority figure. So, as Lillie concludes, “In these examples, while Thecla moves beyond her circumscribed status, the men must work harder and harder not only to try to restore her to her proper place, but also to retain their own social status.”

Thecla’s powerful leadership is reminiscent of the second- century portrait of Mary of Magdala in the Gospel of Mary. But Lillie notes that this gospel

mentions nothing about sexuality. While Mary is defined and named as “woman” throughout her eponymous gospel, nothing in particular is said about her sexuality or marital status: she is neither celibate nor wife, mother nor virgin; in this text she is simply teacher, seer, comforter, and exemplary leader.

The Gospel of Mary paints a striking picture of a woman’s leadership in that the character of Mary is portrayed as Jesus’ closest companion and best advocate for his teaching. After Jesus’s death, he enjoins his disciples, including Mary, to continue his work. But, except for Mary, the disciples fear those who have killed Jesus. When, with Mary’s encouragement, the disciples seem ready to proceed, Peter and Andrew rebuff Mary because she is a woman and her teachings appear strange to them. Levi then defends Mary and leads proclamation of the good news of Jesus’s teachings.

Lillie summarizes:

Throughout the extant portion of this text, Mary exemplifies the stability, clarity, and knowledge of an exemplary leader. In the midst of the Savior’s departure and the fear of similar violence, Mary not only is an example of stability and clarity, but she uses her own skill to steady the group. Additionally, she is singled out for special status with the Savior and the special teachings from him. While Peter qualifies Mary’s special relationship saying that the Savior loved her more than other women, Levi is clear to correct that the Savior loved her more than everyone, his male followers included. … It is important to remember, though, that Levi’s defense is not only predicated on Mary and her character but also upon the Savior’s teachings themselves. Levi’s words imply that Jesus did not prohibit women’s teaching, visions, etc. Rather, laying down new laws against women teaching and their place as leaders within the community is characteristic of the adversaries, not followers of the Savior. All can seek and acquire their true humanity, because, according to the text, it is something that lies within. Therefore, in terms of the Gospel of Mary, distinctions in status (though Peter tries again and again) cannot be made on the basis of gender.

Lillie’s treatment of the Nag Hammadi document, On the Origin of the World, and particularly its story of the cosmic rulers’ rape of Eve embedded within the text is, like 1 Timothy, based on “a mythological elaboration of the creation narrative from Genesis.” But its point about gender in the early Christ movements could not be more different. Rather than 1 Timothy’s support of patriarchal power, On the Origin finds that “the fecundity of creation flows from divine female figures,” according to Lillie.

As Eve enters the narrative, the rulers and authorities of the material world … decide to create a human being because they fear the divine realm will try to ruin their work. … In this way, the rulers hope to make those born from the light their slaves (112.25–113.5). However … Wisdom/Sophia laughs at their plot, knowing through her foresight that their humans will be used in service of the divine to condemn the rulers (113.6–16). In order to advance her plan, Wisdom creates her own human first— a human who will instruct the rulers’ Adam how to escape their grasp. Wisdom names her creation Eve (113.17–35). When the rulers finish their creation, Adam, he is lifeless on the ground having no spirit/breath, so they abandon him. Wisdom-Life eventually sends her own breath to Adam, giving him a soul; and … then sends her daughter Life, also called Eve, to instruct Adam and cause him to rise. … Eve’s words are efficacious as Adam stands, the text stating that Eve’s “word became a work,” (OnOrig. 115.3–116.8).

The authorities are disturbed and decide to rape Eve. But Eve tricks the rulers of the world. She leaves her likeness with Adam and enters and becomes the Tree of Knowledge. So the rulers rape only Eve’s likeness. Eve’s likeness then takes the fruit, the knowledge, of the tree the real Eve has become, reintegrates herself, and shares this font of knowledge with Adam. Lillie summarizes this reversal by Eve after the rape.

As they ingest the fruit their minds open, they become enlightened, and they love one another. Through this eating they also see the rulers for what they are, beasts, and the two humans “loathe them,” thus enacting the plan of the divine realm to save humanity from the rulers (119.6–18). In On the Origin, there is no man or male savior on top, but rather a constellation of female figures, imbued with divine power and efficacious in their own right. These female figures portray a sharp contrast to the rulers: while the female figures of the divine realm display care and life-giving power, the rulers of the world in their arrogance and ignorance wield power to violate and subjugate.

In On the Origin, Lillie sees

a text that analyzes the structures of the world and imagines a possibility beyond them. … Woman is not derivative or secondary to man, but is figured as efficacious, divine, trickster and also violated and split. … Adam holds a space where the feminine does not need to be rejected, controlled, or kept under wraps; a space where men and women can exist in partnership. … Eve possesses the resources necessary to protect herself as well as direct her own healing. She is not shamed or blamed for the violence perpetrated against her, but through this violence the brutal structures of the world are unmasked.

Lillie’s portrait of Christ movements’ understanding of gender is not unified, for in addition to the patriarchal 1 Timothy, there are three other options in full view in the second century. On the Origin of the World, the Gospel of Mary, and the Acts of Paul and Thecla provide major alternatives. These other three are not a single alternative to 1 Timothy, but rather three differing options that point to even more diversity of genderin the second century. So, for Lillie,

These texts point to the wide-ranging and multiple ways women were figured rhetorically as well as the myriad of possibilities and spaces they could hold—from child-bearer to leader. In the same way that followers of the early Jesus movements used the stories of Jesus’ teachings, life, death, and resurrection creatively in a multitude of configurations, so too, the possibilities for women reflect this multiplicity. Interestingly, these possibilities for the positionality of women are often predicated on the way in which the Jesus story is framed and interpreted. While men are often seen policing the boundaries of the possible, women seem to hold the potential of occupying multiple spaces.

Lillie’s paper provides a very helpful complement to the Christianity Seminar sessions, in 2014 and 2017, about gender in the first two centuries. It points to the possibility that the overarching work of the Seminar in terms of gender will demonstrate not one patriarchal conclusion, but a range of creative and incomplete arrangements of gender and power.

Virginia Burrus’s paper, “The Gender of Martyrdom,” had very similar positions, but its nuanced and complex picture focuses on the ways that gendering occurs in second- and third-century stories of martyrdom. Although Burrus uses somewhat different language than Lillie, her study provides a more specific portrait of the diverse gendering in the first two centuries than Lillie surveyed through a wider lens.

Burrus concludes,

My thesis is that early Christian martyrdom texts queer gender. That is to say, they resist and subvert understandings of gender that were widely held in the ancient Mediterranean and that are arguably, to a great degree, still operative in our own context as well. The simplest version of this conventional understanding is that masculinity is active and dominating, femininity passive and submissive, that masculinity aligns with virtue and femininity does not— or at least it aligns with only lesser, more passive virtues. Masculinity and femininity exist on a spectrum, moreover, and one’s position on that spectrum is never stable or secure. Masculinity is always at risk. Our texts leverage that risk by representing martyrdom as a kind of contest or competition in which manhood might be lost or won. Rather than subjects of public torture and execution, martyrs are seen to be victorious athletes, tested and proven in the combat of the arena and in the rhetorical combat that precedes it. But who are these manly victors? They are, overwhelmingly, nonmen— that is, women, children, elders, disabled, slaves. Their bodies are otherwise than the expected ones.

Correspondingly, they skew virtue. They do not win by dominating but simply by enduring—by refusing to break. The only thing they control is their own wills; the cost of their victory is not someone else’s life but their own. Andreia—courage, manliness— has been significantly revised, then. At the very least, the emphasis has shifted. The martyrs’ passive resistance is seen as strength, the aggression of the rulers who torture, sentence, and execute them as weakness. Counterbalancing the representation of martyrs as masculine athletes is the representation of martyrs as birthing mothers and the consequent privileging of maternal bodies, both literal and metaphorical. Pain proves generative, in the labor of martyrdom as in birthing. Suffering alone becoming suffering-with—compassion. Martyrdom gives birth to new life, to new bonds of love, and to new forms of nurture. What, then, is the gender of martyrdom? It is neither masculine nor feminine nor does it simply transcend such distinctions. Rather it is hybrid, queered, crossing, emerging.

Joanna Dewey’s study, “Women: Their Visibility and Agency and Loss of Agency in Early Christian Texts,” also takes an expansive perspective. Based within her career-long engagement with feminist theory and first-century contexts, she brings a clear critique of both ancient and contemporary scholarly patriarchal approaches. Although it is important to her larger work to see much first- and secondcentury literature and perspectives as damaging to women’s lives, her assessment of the earliest Christ-movement author Paul is nuanced and generally focused on how

Paul affirms women’s freedom from the patriarchal household in his use of the baptismal formula, “in Christ there is no male or female.” He affirms women’s equality in matters of marriage and celibacy. He may at times be disturbed by the way women use their freedom. So Paul’s writings also include hints of restrictions on women’s agency, hints that are made explicit in the interpolation in 1 Corinthians 14, and that are developed strongly in later writings in Paul’s name.

Dewey sees much of this also in the second-century apocryphal Acts of the Apostles and, in this regard, her take is quite close to Lillie’s. Dewey’s approach to Luke has been important in the history of scholarship, and this paper underlines her position.

Luke, the author of Acts, presents an ambiguous picture of women around Paul. Women are explicitly visible as members of the communities. Paul when persecuting Christians prior to his conversion explicitly drags off “men and women” (Acts 8:3; 9:2; 22:4). Woman appear in the narrative, named (Lydia, Damaris, etc.) and unnamed (a few Greek women and men of high standing, four unmarried daughters of Philip with the gift of prophecy). Women are clearly visible. They are not, however, shown as ministering: Prisca/Priscilla and Aquila are present in Paul’s letters as travelling missionaries independent of Paul. They appear in Acts but with no public ministry—they take Apollos aside to explain things better (Acts 18:2, 24). Public missionary activity is reserved for men. In Acts, women are visible but have restricted agency.

For Dewey, however, the strongest take-away concerning the study of gender in the first two centuries has to do with what she sees as a final triumph of patriarchy in early Christianity. Here she goes beyond the second century and outlines five factors that converged to enable and solidify early Christianity as patriarchal. They are:

(1) The typical process of institutionalization, (2) the move from house churches into public space, (3) the gradual shift from oral to written authority, (4) the reintroduction and increasing importance of sacrificial understandings of Jesus’ death and of the Eucharist; and last, (5) the trump card, Constantine’s conversion.

In some contrast to the papers of Lillie, Burrus, and Dewey, David Wheeler-Reed’s paper, “Re-Reading Regulating Sex One Year Later,” addressed issues around marriage and ascetic behavior. Nevertheless, the subject matter of his paper clearly relates to issues of gender as much as those other three papers do. Since issues of marriage and asceticism mattered for the Christ groups and movements of the first two centuries, Wheeler-Reed’s paper is important to the work of our seminar.

Both his paper and his previous book, Regulating Sex, focus on the divergent and emerging attitudes and behaviors of early Christ people relative to marriage, asceticism, and the more technical topic of porneia (a Greek word meaning adultery, fornication, and sexual immorality). Wheeler-Reed notes, “Ideas about marriage and procreation are much more fluid and malleable in the first few centuries of early Christianity than many suppose.” Indeed, in many respects, this is particularly the case in the second century. Thanks to Wheeler-Reed, the fall Seminar discussion in Denver took this topic up in the context of the rather intense disagreements and complicated opinions about asceticism and marriage in the second century. As he points out, Clement of Alexandria “does argue that any man who has sex with his wife for the purpose of pleasure adulterates his marriage.” Similarly, Wheeler-Reed argues that porneia, often traditionally understood as “adultery,” has a far broader, more complicated, and more debated meaning in this early period.

As his paper reassesses his earlier book, Wheeler-Reed notes: “I wish I would’ve spoken a bit more often about just how much the early Christians were the ones questioning established definitions of marriage in the Roman Empire.” Perhaps the Seminar needs to let the likes of Wheeler-Reed help us explore how gender was recalibrated in the second century, recognizing that century as a time of thorough renegotiation of marriage and asceticism, as a lens through which we can appreciate that they were not necessarily opposing and mutually exclusive. In other words, the advances and queering of masculine and feminine categories in the papers by Lillie and Burrus may need to be accompanied by new sets of hybrid relational categories in asceticism and marriage.

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After further lively discussion on a variety of suggestions regarding process, two papers were presented to demonstrate a range of style for both scholarly and public audiences as well as language shifts about what has traditionally been called “Christian origins.” B. Brandon Scott identifies his piece, “Arch of Titus,” as a cameo essay based on an artifact. Nina Livesey’s paper, “Does Paul speak from the heart?” assesses Paul’s influence among early Christ followers through an analysis of his letters.

Scott uses the triumphal arch of the Roman Emperor Titus to demonstrate both the history of the complicated Roman-Judean relationship and the role of this relationship in the development of Christian thought and history. Scott’s informal writing style informs readers who are not antiquities specialists. But for the student of history, his focus on the artifact’s representation of an important political event significantly shifts the traditional understanding of the origins of Christianity.

The erection of the Arch of Titus in the Roman Forum memorializes the siege and sacking of Jerusalem and the destruction of the Temple. It appears to depict the tension between Rome and its Judean territory. But the lesser-known issue related to the arch is its impact on the eventual estrangement of the children of Abraham and their mutual antipathy. Paul and the Q Gospel still provide the only evidence of life among the various groups trying to identify themselves within Israel in the period before the construction of the arch. Scott argues that when Titus was sent to Jerusalem to conclude the “revolt” or “war” against Rome that had begun years earlier, he had not intended to destroy the Temple. It was probably burned unintentionally, but its demise provided Titus with the perfect opportunity to demonstrate the prowess he needed to become emperor.

The logic of the building of the arch was imperial logic. By destroying the Temple Titus was presumed to have triumphed over the God of Israel and thus was elevated to divine status posthumously (by his Flavian family). The defeat of the Judeans featured as the greatest conquest in Flavian propaganda, further enflaming the already bitter Judean hatred toward Rome. The Roman conqueror-imperialistic policy toward the Judeans endured through later Roman dynasties, eventually shaping and distorting the ensuing Jesus movements as they separated themselves from their Jewish identity.

Livesey’s study of Paul’s letters undergirds her agreement with Taussig’s tenth shift away from traditionally held views of Christian origins. Biblical scholars have generally read Paul as speaking plainly, without artifice or contrivance, about his own first-hand experience. Livesey’s work cuts against this grain, arguing that Paul carefully constructed his letters to persuade and to stake out a place among his peer group of literary specialists. Her analysis of Paul’s style in the context of the literary conventions of his time led her to conclude that Paul wrote his letters at least in part for his own social-literary peers, and not necessarily “from the heart” as Paul implies and as the Christian tradition has assumed. His letters are neither confidential nor personal. They reveal a savvy strategist seeking to gain acceptance from his contemporary literary peers and claiming authority for himself. This conclusion may align with Jason BeDuhn’s findings (see the Report on the Spring 2017 Christianity Seminar) that Paul’s letters left very little mark on the early second century.

Livesey’s line of argument begins with a deconstruction of Adolf Deissman’s influential early twentieth-century claim that Paul, like Jesus, worked from a humble social position. According to Deissman, Paul depicted the character of Christianity originating in a primitive and pristine social state, in opposition to high culture. By contrast, Livesey finds that all of Paul’s letters were intentional, carefully crafted documents employing the conventions of letter-writing known among literary specialists. In fact, Paul wrote letters with the aim of gaining prestige and authority from this social milieu. He masterfully uses rhetorical autobiography, not to convey historical reality, but rather to elicit audience confidence. Typical of ancient autobiographers, Paul was highly selective in the information he divulges, and his choices signal his intent to identify his authority. He signals his transition from a lower human position to a divinely driven agent for the purpose of claiming a hierarchically superior position to his rivals. This human-vs-divine dichotomy with which Paul presents himself is one of the techniques by which he claims his words are from God, not of his own invention.

Whether Paul’s strategy succeeded among his literary peers or with the recipients of his letters remains unknown. But traditional assumptions of flourishing Pauline communities from Rome to Jerusalem are inconsistent with both the relative silence about him in the early second century and the literary intentions of his letters.

Livesey’s presentation offers a contrasting style for the seminar’s book, as it presents its position with scholarly arguments and lengthy footnotes of attribution and explanation. Her work and Scott’s article both demonstrate the need for, and the challenge of, communicating with the larger public. The seminar is gifted with these contrasting examples offering both scholarly discernment and direct persuasion that is easily accessible.

Fall 2018 Ballot Items

Westar academic seminars conduct periodic votes on propositions related to their research topic. Both scholars (Fellows) and public members (Associates) cast votes in response to scholar presentations and recommendations. Voting does not, of course, determine the truth–it only indicates what the best judgment is of a significant number of people sitting around the table. Learn more about this tradition at Westar.

David Wheeler-Reed
(Re)Reading Regulating Sex

The term porneia should no longer be translated as “fornication.”

Fellows ... Strongly Agree ... Associates ... Strongly Agree

Porneia should be understood as any “illicit sexual activity,” and those “illicit activities” will change from ancient society to ancient society and from one ancient writer to the next.

Fellows ... Strongly Agree ... Associates ... Generally Agree

It does not make sense to limit porneia as Kyle Harper does to: (1) Prostitution; (2) Same-Sex intercourse; (3) Adultery; (4) Pre-marital intercourse

Fellows ... Strongly Agree ... Associates ... Strongly Agree

Celene Lillie
Thinking through Gender in Second-Century Jesus Movements

Early Jesus followers imagined a myriad of possibilities and practices for women in the first several centuries of the Jesus movement.

Fellows ... Strongly Agree ... Associates ... Strongly Agree

Though many of the early texts of the Jesus movement reflect rhetoric rather than reality, opposition by early leaders such as Tertullian to women’s teaching, preaching, and baptizing point to women filling these roles.

Fellows ... Strongly Agree ... Associates ... Strongly Agree

One of the ways in which the multiplicity of the Jesus movement is evidenced is through the multiple roles imagined for women in the first and second centuries.

Fellows ... Strongly Agree ... Associates ... Strongly Agree

Though occupying different leadership roles, a primary role of men in the first several centuries of Christianity Seminar Fall 2018 Ballot Items Jesus movement literature seems to be to uphold and circumscribe traditional gender norms.

Fellows ... Generally Agree ... Associates ... Strongly Agree

Virginia Burrus
The Gender of Martyrdom

Early Christian martyrdom texts appropriate and confirm conventional ideals of masculinity by representing martyrs as victorious athletes, gladiators, or soldiers, tested and proven in the combat of the arena and demonstrating the highest degrees of selfcontrol.

Fellows ... Generally Agree ... Associates ... Stongly Agree

Early Christian martyrdom texts queer gender. That is to say, they resist and subvert understandings of gender that were widely held in the ancient Mediterranean. They do so by representing women, children, elders, the disabled, and slaves as more “masculine” than the rulers who torture, sentence, and execute them, by virtue of their capacity for passive endurance.

Fellows ... Strongly Agree ... Associates ... Strongly Agree

Early Christian martyrdom texts masculinize female martyrs to underline their superiority to their persecutors but at the same time reassign them to subordinate roles within the Christian community by emphasizing stereotypical feminine traits and roles, such as motherhood.

Fellows ... Generally Agree ... Associates ... Strongly Agree

The representation of martyrs as birthing mothers, both literal and metaphorical, privileges maternal bodies and thereby exalts women. Female martyrs are presented as powerful exemplars qua women and also as potent theological symbols. Pain proves generative, in the labor of martyrdom as in birthing.

Fellows ... Strongly Agree ... Associates ... Strongly Agree

The gender of a martyr is inherently ambivalent, hybrid, unstable.

Fellows ... Strongly Agree ... Associates ... Strongly Agree

Joanna Dewey
Women: Their Visibility and Agency and Loss of Agency In Early Christian Texts

The Pauline traditions provide us with abundant evidence of both women’s visibility and agency and of attempts to silence and control women.

Fellows ... Strongly Agree ... Associates ... Strongly Agree

Already in the second century, and continuing in the third and fourth, forces were gathering and reinforcing each other to limit women’s agency.

Fellows ... Strongly Agree ... Associates ... Strongly Agree

There is no title that Paul applies to a male leader that he does not also apply to a woman leader.

Fellows ... Strongly Agree ... Associates ... Strongly Agree

Paul approves of the theory of gender equality but is not fully comfortable with its practice.

Fellows ... Generally Agree ... Associates ... Strongly Agree

The story of Thecla does not stand alone in the Apocryphal Acts: there are twelve named women in various Apocryphal Acts who hear an apostle preaching, reject sex and marriage, and get persecuted. And yet, they always get their way and thrive. These women were ancient Christian heroines.

Fellows ... Strongly Agree ... Associates ... Strongly Agree

The Pastoral Epistles represent perhaps the most total capitulation of all the writings that were eventually included in the New Testament to the patriarchal, hierarchical, and male-dominated culture of the ancient world.

Fellows ... Strongly Agree ... Associates ... Strongly Agree

The typical process of institutionalization enabled and solidified patriarchal Christianity.

Fellows ... Strongly Agree ... Associates ... Strongly Agree

The move from house churches into public space enabled and solidified patriarchal Christianity.

Fellows ... Generally Agree ... Associates ... Strongly Agree

The gradual shift from oral to written authority enabled and solidified patriarchal Christianity.

Fellows ... Generally Agree ... Associates ... Strongly Agree

The reintroduction and increasing importance of sacrificial understandings of Jesus’ death and of the Eucharist enabled and solidified patriarchal Christianity.

Fellows ... Generally Agree ... Associates ... Strongly Agree

Constantine’s conversion enabled and solidified patriarchal Christianity.

Fellows ... Generally Agree ... Associates ... Strongly Agree

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