I have little to add to the objections by Rachel Held Evans and several others (see the list compiled by J.K. Gayle, James McGrath, Dunedin School) to a post, since taken down with an apology, that provides divine sanction for gender inequality and supported by a depiction of sex in terms and imagery that have been utilized in colonial discourse on the violent conquest of colonized peoples/lands as any basic introduction to post-colonial criticism would attest. I am more disappointed that many rebuttals (see here, here, here, here, here, here) have focussed on personally attacking Evans, even perpetuating the gender stereotype of the overly emotional or shrill woman, or dismiss her (and apparently many other male and female academic bloggers) as misreading the authorial intent. On the latter fallacy, if I mark a student paper I may be able to make an educated guess about the intentions of the author but I ultimately mark how an argument is communicated in the paper (e.g., word selection, sytax, outline of case, evidence cited) and the student may not be aware of all the corollaries or full implications of a given argument. With that said I recognize clarifications were issued about how the post was intended to be read and I always want to read charitably, but it still seems to me that at the very least the social logic of the quotation is that essentialized gender roles are prescribed and naturalized because it is seen as evident that in sexual intercourse men are the active partner who pentrates and women the passive recipient (note other bloggers have noted how different this argument would sound if the imagery was switched to the woman embracing, enveloping or consuming the man). It is striking to me that this is precisely the logic that legitimated social inequality in the Greco-Roman world – free men penetrate women, boys, lower-class persons or slaves and colonized persons but they found it shameful to take on the female role of being penetrated. As Daniel Kirk (previously Michael Bird, Joel Willits) pointed out, Jesus himself was a victim of this mentality as crucifixion was a way to “feminize” victims of Roman imperial domination. Yet in triumphing over the powers on the cross and being vindicated at Easter, as well as calling the disciples to a different way of servant leadership, Jesus exposes this domination system as wrong. Now in a past post I concede that Mark, like the whole Bible, is open to liberationist or oppressive readings, but should we not use the gospel to oppose social injustice rather than perpetuate it?