Christians for Biblical Equality to Offer Its Digital Journals to the Public in “Year of Jubilee”

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In 2017, to celebrate its 30th year of ministry, Christians for Biblical Equality, the flagship organization of the evangelical egalitarian movement, will offer all its digital journals to the public on its website, free of charge, in a celebration it calls the “Year of Jubilee.”

In 1987, a group of evangelical scholars came together, concerned that the Bible’s teachings on gender were being distorted by patriarchal leaders. In response, they formed their own academic journal, Priscilla Papers. The following year, these leaders formed an educational non-profit organization, Christians for Biblical Equality (CBE).

Since its inception, CBE has been the flagship organization for evangelical egalitarianism, the belief that the Bible affirms the co-leadership of women alongside men in the family, church, and home. CBE has been a leader in publishing egalitarian scholarship, a core component of the organization’s mission. It continues to publish award-winning quarterly issues of its academic journal, Priscilla Papers, as well as a magazine, Mutuality, and a blog, Arise. CBE hosts conferences with lectures from renowned evangelical leaders. It also publishes, translates, and reviews books. All told, CBE’s library boasts over a thousand resources, including articles, books, reviews, and multimedia recordings.

For most of its history, CBE’s resources have been available for sale or restricted to its paying members, but that has been changing in recent years, according to CBE’s development manager, Mary Lou Wiley. “Since 2015, CBE’s donors have supported initiatives to make more resources available, especially internationally,” says Wiley. “Twenty-two of our resources, including books and journal issues, are now available globally through a partnership with Publish4All, a global network of Christian printers. In 2016, we are printing and distributing nearly 5,000 books to ministry partners in Africa alone. We’ve also made our library of over 200 audio and video recordings available online at no cost.”

In 2017, to celebrate its 30th year of ministry, CBE will offer all its digital journals to the public on its website, free of charge, in a celebration it calls the “Year of Jubilee.” In addition, current CBE members will see no renewal fees in 2017; instead, their memberships will be extended by a full year.

CBE’s celebration hearkens back to the Old Testament concept of Jubilee, according to CBE’s president, Dr. Mimi Haddad.

“In the book of Leviticus, God commands Israel that every 50 years, debts were to be forgiven, slaves and prisoners freed, and land returned to its original owners, and the land allowed to lay fallow. This year, called the Year of Jubilee, created a means to liberate those who had fallen under bondage or oppression and restore right relationships with family, community, and even the land. As long as I’ve been with CBE, I’ve seen our resources liberate women from the bondage of patriarchy, which is often mischaracterized as a biblical ideal. For many, CBE’s work ushers in a kind of Year of Jubilee in their own lives. As we reflect on three decades of ministry, I can’t think of a more appropriate celebration than to share the gift of CBE’s powerful resources with the world!”

In its effort to advance a biblical foundation for gift-based rather than gender-based ministry and service, CBE sponsors annual conferences, facilitates local chapters, hosts an online bookstore, and publishes two award-winning journals. For more information, visit http://www.cbeinternational.org.

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Tim Krueger
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