No longer "Male and Female" (Gal 3:28) Ethics and an Early Christian Baptismal Formula

Hauptsächlicher Artikelinhalt

Adela Yarbro Collins


The controversial text of Gal 3:28 is classified as an early Christian baptismal formula with a remarkable reception in early
Christian Writings. It is argued that all baptized persons are qualified to be full members of the church and that no group
defined by gender, ethnicity, social, or legal status may be excluded from any type of service in the church. With regard to
the role of the text in current debate, this reading leads to strong claims regarding social ethics in contemporary church and
society: for example, that it is wrong for church authorities to deny ordination to women on the grounds of gender. Practices
involving gendered violence, sexual molestation and exploitation demean women and fail to acknowledge their inherent
dignity and worth. The baptismal declaration of Gal 3:28 calls for a society in which all such mistreatment or exclusion of
women will be shameful matters of the past.