If what Julia Baird says here is true about Sydney teaching on women submitting to male headship in every context, inside and outside the church, are things not getting just a teensy-weensy bit out of hand?
LATER: I note and acknowledge here a response in The Briefing. I am not sure that point 4 works that well. Newspaper publishes nonsense one day does not mean that next day's post is ignorable. Not is point 5 up to much: 'nuances' to help society understand what the church stands for? Can't recall Jesus dealing in 'nuances' and expecting people to patiently wait while he worked through them! Point 6 is a good point. So how come the headlines aren't about a service in which the man vows to live and love his wife sacrificially?
In general I think we are missing the most obvious point about Ephesians 5:21-6:9 on husbands/wives, parents/children, masters/slaves. The headline is, BE SUBJECT TO ONE ANOTHER OUT OF REVERENCE FOR CHRIST (5:21). From this headline flows the mutuality of the three sets of relationships, each of which starts out with the 'norm' of the day: 'Wives, be subject to your husbands ... Children, obey your parents ... Slaves, obey your earthly masters ...; only for the responsive requirement to tilt the potential imbalance of one side of the relationship being dominated by the other. 'Husbands, love your wives, just as Christ loved the church and gave himself up for her ... fathers, do not provoke your children to anger ... masters, do the same i.e. good] to them. Stop threatening them ...'
Further, there is a subtle modifier of 'subject' in 5:22 when the mirror and closing verse of the passage reiterates the beginning with 'Each of you, however, should love his wife as himself, and a wife should respect her husband' (5:33). 'Submit' is such a loaded word today, with a bad history through the ways in which we men have 'subjected' our wives to various ills, including dumping them for a younger woman (my current hobby horse, brothers!). But 'respect' I can live with that. Is there any woman committed to her marriage who does not want to respect her husband?
STILL LATER: Notwithstanding my qualms about the Sydney service, I think a great case is made for it by ++Peter Jensen himself.