“Heretic” is a big charge. Saying someone is “not a Christian” is a judgment not to hurl around lightly. We should not, for example, swing such accusations at those who disagree with us on what “the mark of the beast” means, or on the place speaking in tongues should have in modern-day worship. But certain ideas are really beyond the fray of Christian belief.
I have written before that it is possible to treat male headship in such a way that the man replaces Jesus. That would certainly not be compatible with Christianity. Others have expanded on why they find ESS (Eternal Submission of the Son, a doctrine used to justify female submission) outside the fray of orthodoxy.
To add to that, here is an exhibit on why I think the Council of Biblical™ Manhood and Womanhood really don’t understand the gospel:
48. How can a Christian single woman enter into the mystery of Christ and the Church if she never experiences marriage?
[Their answer promotes offering your virginity to God. Nothing about becoming a Christian.] – CBMW, “Fifty Crucial Questions, Question 48
The very premise of such a question does not fit in with understanding the gospel. A similar question will be:
How can you enter the pleasures of wealth without acting the role of a wealthy person in a movie? [Their answer: By not acting in movies]
Wealth is not role play. You enter into the pleasures of wealth by having money. And by enjoying the things money can buy. Movies have nothing to do with it.
The mystery of Christ and the church, likewise, is not about marriage or celibacy. Jesus loved you – male or female, single or married or divorced or widowed – first. Know you are loved by God, love God back, experience God’s love, and see how it never ends, and how it changes you to live for Him. Even if you are unfaithful, God remains faithful. That is the mystery of Christ and the church. Other names for entering into the mystery of Christ and the church include: being born again, giving your life to God, getting saved, and inviting Jesus into your heart. For all the great things that can be said about marriage or virginity, neither of them is central to how anyone enters into this mystery.
The mere suggestion or question which hints that a single woman may enter it differently from a married woman, or a man, is anti-gospel. To mention virginity makes it worse. The (single or otherwise) non-virgin enters the Kingdom the same way the virgin does.
It seems that the theologians at CBMW do not know what it means to enter into the relationship between Christ and his church.
This was not a moment’s slip of the tongue by one individual associated with the CBMW. The subheader says “An Overview of Central Concerns about Manhood and Womanhood.” The front page mentions Randy Stinson (president of CBMW), David Kotter (Executive Director of CBMW), as well as John Piper and Wayne Grudem.* It says of itself: “Over the years, the booklet you hold in your hand has been one of our most helpful and popular resources.” (Foreword) It admits “[t]his book is adapted from a CBMW-sponsored book, Recovering Biblical Manhood and Womanhood.”
To not promote an actual relationship with Christ (available to male and female, single or not, virgin or not), even when answering a direct question about entering this relationship, is central CBMW doctrine. I strongly consider the possibility that this type of non-answer comes from theologians who don’t actually know, firsthand, what it is to be born again.