NIV Ready To Take The Next Step

According to an article by Susan Olasky in the March 29, 1997 issue of World magazine,
the New International Version is quietly going "genderneutral." This means words
such as; he, man, brothers, and mankind will be replaced with such words as; person,
people, brother and sister, and humankind. Larry Walker, one of the 15 members on the
Committee for Biblical Translation says, "At the present time, almost everyone is for
it (unisex language)."

This unisex language opens the door for women to be in church leadership. In this
regard, Gilbert Bilezikian, professor, writer, and a founding elder and influential
theologian at the Willow Creek Community Church believes, "There cannot be authentic
community as described in the New Testament without the full inclusion of the constituency
of members into the ministry, life, and leadership of the group. "In other words,
"You can't have a New Testament church without women being in leadership."
Willow Creek has had women elders since its founding in 1978. (Willow Creek was the model
for the progressive movement among the assemblies.)

The issue is more than just a translation of the Bible. The real issues are
"feminism" and "obedience." Willow Creek is an example of those who
are willing to set aside Biblical distinctions in order to accommodate women who desire to
exercise leadership in the church, and men who lack the conviction and commitment to take
a stand against it. While they are ready to supply some rather intellectual explanations
for . their departure from Scripture, in reality compromise, appeasement, and expediency
become the governing principles rather than obedience to the word of God. (I Sam. 15:23)

Of course many will point to the rapid growth of such churches and attempt to justify
such departure from the Word of God. The truth is, there is never justification for such
departure. Once again men and women have failed to bring their imaginations (reasonings)
into. captivity to the obedience of Christ. (2 Cor. 10:5)

This is simply another step in the apostasy of the professing church. Many may mock
such a thought, but the Adversary is clever and knows that the accumulation of such
departures produces the same effect as a massive and radical one. In fact, it may produce
a greater departure since many will not stand against small changes over time, while a
quick and massive departure would receive much more opposition.

The question we each must answer, and each local church must answer is, "Will we
stand against such error, or will we take the easier and popular path of compromise,
appeasement, and expediency?" Are we ready to be ridiculed and belittled? Remember,
God has said, "obedience is better than sacrifice."