In a recent Mere Comments posting I mentioned in passing that egalitarianism involves anthropological modalism. A friend wrote for clarification, asking me, “What is anthropological modalism and how is it related to the Egalitarian heresy?” This, for any who may have the same question, was my reply:

I am drawing an analogy here.  A theological modalist effaces the critical distinctions between members of the Godhead by reducing the Persons to functions or modes of existence of a single member.  Classically, under the influence of strict monotheism, the existence of a Son and Spirit were admitted, but they could only be “modes” of the existence of the one God–not the discrete personal existences (hypostases) recognized by Christian theology.  

An egalitarian is an anthropological modalist who effaces the critical distinctions between man and woman by making the sexes into functions or modes of existence of the “human.”  The idea of humanness is thus made to serve a scheme in which the differences between the man and the woman, which include the priority that orthodox anthropology recognizes in the man, are subject to egalitarian reduction. 

Because of the relation of God and man in Christ, any anthropological heresy also inescapably infects theology and becomes a theological heresy as well–although some egalitarians with more conservative instincts do not understand this or will not admit it.  A Christ who is Human in the egalitarian sense cannot be Man in the orthodox sense, but is merely the apotheosis of the egalitarian ideal.  He cannot be the head of the man as the man is the head of the woman as God is his own head; the ordinal relations of which the Apostle spoke, and in which the Church believes, are utterly broken on the egalitarian wheel.  That is why egalitarianism is a heresy and no orthodox Christian can be an egalitarian.