1. Ephesians 5 prescribes gender-related roles to men and women in marriage.
2. Ephesians 5 compares these gender-related marriage roles to Christ and the Church (i.e. the Gospel)
3. Ephesians 5 specifically attaches the man’s role to Christ’s work (especially his death & self-denial) and the woman’s role to the salvation/sanctification/glorification experience of Church.
4. Ephesians 5 says gender-related roles in marriage are directly linked to the Gospel.
The Gospel is to be directly applied to marriage, but in different ways for men and women.
This is the foundation of complementarianism: gender-related roles based on the Gospel.
Now, let each one step back and preach the Gospel to himself (or herself). Does Christ initiate love toward the Church? Or does the Church initiate? Does Christ lead the Church? Or does the Church lead Him? Does Christ have authority over the Church? Or is the Church equal in authority with Christ? Who dies for whom? Who leads whom? Who carries the greater weight?
No slippery slope here. It’s just simple exegesis of Scripture that can’t be denied by anyone who accepts the Word as it is written.
An Egalitarian can certainly believe the Gospel, but he (or she) will be in defiance of Ephesians 5, and will have to explain away several other passages that link gender roles to the Biblical facts of creation and the fall.
Now, here IS a slippery slope I’m observing: Deny inerrancy . . . call the creation and fall in Genesis “figurative” or a myth . . . do away with the NT gender roles that are built on the creation & fall you don’t believe actually happened. The Gospel is tied to all of this, and can’t be separated by the sincerest idealism. Seems like some here are proving the slipperiness of the slope they don’t think exists. But keep in mind – this is not my argument, just an observation. My argument is that Ephesians 5 proves that the Gospel and complementarianism are indispensably linked. Any group or person that wants to be defined by Gospel-centeredness will necessarily follow Ephesians 5 into some form (even a mild form) of complementarianism.
We can applaud the Gospel Coalition and T4G for taking this unpopular but thoroughly Biblical stance.