Saturday, April 8, 2017

Does The Bible Permit Women To Be Pastors?

  • Defining The Issues:
          -For decades, Christianity has been divided over the issue of the purposes of women in ministry. In other words, there are varying points of view as to whether Scripture permits woman to serve in ordained, authoritative positions of the church or not. For example, some congregations have all male deacons while others allow for deaconesses. Therefore, the specific purpose of this article is to provide a biblical answer to this important question. Although Christians will not be disqualified by God from going to heaven because of attending a church with female pastors, they should either be on guard for heretical ideas or completely separate themselves from that congregation to find a different one because an entrance for liberal theology has been created. Having female pastors in a church is a sign of poor spiritual health because adhering to such a pattern of ministers violates the pattern of ministers presented within the pages of the New Testament. The truth of the matter is that ordained pastors are supposed to be men.
  • "Husband Of One Wife:"
          -The New Testament Scriptures plainly tell us that appointed ministers of the church are to be the husband of a wife (1 Timothy 3:1-13; 5:1; Titus 1:5-9). These passages discuss other characteristics of appointed men such as not being alcoholics, greedy, selfish, foul-mouthed, and being responsible. In summary, Scripture gives us a comprehensive list of stipulations for men who desire to take on the obligations of a bishop or deacon. We are told what morals these individuals must uphold and how they must conduct themselves in order to obtain and maintain being a spiritual leader of the local congregation. These men are to set the primary example of holiness for other members to see. However, we have no Scripture passages offering any sort of descriptions of or necessary qualifications for any female ministers. We know that these passages address men because they read, "the husband of one wife." Scripture affirms heterosexual marriage. These passages are silent about female bishops, elders, or pastors (these terms have a synonymous meaning in biblical usage).
  • The Apostle Paul Forbade Women From Possessing Authority Over Adult Men In The Church And Making Interruptions During Times Of Preaching (1 Corinthians 14:33-35; 1 Timothy 2:10-15):
          -The church authority structure pointedly rules out women from exercising spiritual authority over men. This scriptural principle does not in any way pertain to the political, social, or economic categories of the secular sphere, but to the context of church leadership. Male leadership in the church is grounded on the order in the creation of human beings and how sin entered the world, as recorded within the Book of Genesis. The reasons for woman not being allowed to be ordained ministers in church are that 1.) Adam was created first and 2.) Eve was deceived by the serpent. Adam is the federal representative of mankind. Therefore, all humanity falls in Adam (Romans 5). The grounding in creation gives Paul's reasoning a universal application. He also affirms that what he is writing is the "Lord's commandment" (1 Corinthians 14:37). When the apostle says that women should remain silent in churches, he means they should not be interruptive but peaceful and orderly.
  • Woman Do Have Dignity And Purpose:
          -Generally speaking, women excel in areas pertaining to hospitality, instruction, and support. They are not restricted from occupying gifts of the Holy Spirit (1 Corinthians 12). Women are neither forbidden from educating children nor from exhorting other women to remain in the truth (Titus 2:3-4). They, just like men, have been called to demonstrate the fruit of the Holy Spirit (Galatians 5:22-23), contend for the faith (1 Peter 3:15), and to proclaim the Gospel of Salvation to the lost world (Matthew 28:18-20). Women are not inferior to men. Men and women are equal in essence, being created in the image and likeness of God. It is just that men and women have different purposes at home and in the church.
          -Some women were direct witnesses to the crucifixion and resurrection of the Lord Jesus Christ, even when most of the other disciples went into hiding (Matthew 27:55; John 19:25). Moreover, the Apostle Paul acknowledged individual women for their work in ministry and even addressed some as "co-workers"(Romans 16:1; 6-7; Colossians 4:15; Philippians 4:2-3). The point here is that the Bible is not in any way sexist, biased in favor of one specific gender over the other. The accomplishments of women ought to be acknowledged.

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