I debated before writing this. For one thing, the answer is so obvious to me that blogging about it seemed a waste of time. For another, if people didn’t already know about the series Christianity Today was doing, I wasn’t sure I wanted to draw attention to it. Nonchristians already view Christians as less tolerant of women in authority, and I wasn’t sure I wanted to give them more reason to dislike Christians, and by extension (sadly) Christ.
But after seeing the reaction to Christianity Today’s series on Christian women bloggers and who’s in charge of them, I couldn’t keep quiet. Thankfully, I did see many replies on Twitter defending women’s right to blog without someone with a degree in theology checking in on them, but many people, including women, agreed with the first essay in the series which implied that women should be held accountable by their denomination—that there needed to be some sort of guidelines for these rogue Christian bloggers.
The essayist threw in a quick statement that men were to be held accountable, too, but let’s face it. Christianity Today’s Twitter headline said “especially women,” and the only blogger mentioned by name was Jen Hatmaker. I guess she got too popular and then made a statement that did not please the powers that think they be.
Crisis! Crisis! Who’s in charge of Jen? Who will control the blogosphere, they wonder. Well, I have three thoughts about all this.
1. If there’s a crisis in the church, I would argue that it might be something like how to help refugees or who is in charge of well-known pastors who shill for sexist, racist politicians.
2. If bloggers are a crisis, there is no way for the church to hold bloggers accountable even if it wanted to. Sorry!
3. If you have a problem with a blogger’s theology, you can blog about why they’re wrong. The blogosphere patrols itself. Get with the times.
Christianity Today had the gall to use the hashtag #AmplifyWomen, which came out of the women’s march. They may be amplifying women writers, but the first one they amplified in their series had a clear message—that women should only be amplified if they are saying what they are “supposed to” say.
If the women in the New Testament’d had the technology, they’d have been blogging their fingers off. “He’s alive! I saw him!” And good gracious, I hope Peter wouldn’t have said, “I know I just denied knowing him, but let me see that before you hit publish.”
I’d like to say that I won’t even read the other articles in the series, but I’ll probably get swept up in it. Someone needs to hold them accountable, after all.