Adam Edgerly, a pastor, consultant, and member of Biola University’s board of trustees, hosted a lecture during the school’s 2021 Student Congress on Racial Reconciliation (SCORR) where he proudly declared that he spoke out against the Christian University putting out a statement condemning Critical Race Theory (CRT) like the Southern Baptist Convention (SBC) did. Instead, he argued it was the wrong path and that CRT is a marvelous and untapped tool for understanding the scriptures.
Specifically, he “revealed” that Paul appealed to his Intersectionality, and that Mary the mother of Jesus checked all sorts of intersectional boxes which if we acknowledge, will help us understand her better. He said:
Let me give you an example of that: intersectionality. Look at the Apostle Paul from an intersectional point of view. He would declare boldly, ‘I am a Jew, of the tribe of Benjamin, raised in Tarsus, studied under Gamaliel, in the city of Jerusalem, Pharisee of Pharisees, etc., right?
He is using in what a modern-day sense is called an intersectional approach to describing his own identity.
He embraces his Jewish heritage, he embraces his tribal heritage. He embraces his family line. He embraces his hometown of Tarsus. He embraces the university that he went to in Jerusalem and the professor that he studied under, Gamaliel. And he recognizes that all those things have shaped his thinking.
He also embraced the fact that he was an artisan, a business, a tentmaker, and that he was single. And so those things, he described himself that way. But if you think that way when you read his writing, you will see those characteristics of his identity showing up in the way he encounters God. And it gives him a unique perspective that he shares with us in scripture.
[Editor’s note: Although it is true that Paul did describe himself that way, if you read the passage in context, Paul’s point is anything but intersectional.] He continues:
You do the same thing with Mary. Now you’ve got a single girl, from a poor family, who is now a single mom, with all that that means. She is a colonized person living under Roman oppression. Now read the Magnificat, her poem to God, and her declaration of God overturning unjust people and sending the rich away while he blesses the poor, and you got a deeper understanding of who Mary is and why she thinks and talks the way she does.
That’s an example of this tool of thought coming out of Critical Race Theory called intersectionality informing even the way we understand scripture.
h/t to @wokepreachertv for the clip
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