I’ll tell you upfront that this will be controversial. There will not be a grey area, it’s going to black & white. Those that realize they disagree, please read the whole post before throwing accusations and comments. The title is simple and to the point on purpose. Women pastors, preachers, clergy etc. are a controversial subject that has split churches and congregations. There has been some incredibly stupid arguments for and against. To be upfront with you I believe that women should not hold these positions. Not that they aren’t capable, not that they are not equal to men, but that they were not created to.
The main arguments I hear the most often to justify women in these positions are as follows;
- The Galatians 3:28 argument that we are equal is in error when it comes to this point. They took the verse grossly out of context to justify a thought. One must read v. 25-29. Then you will see that scripture is speaking of your position with Christ. We are all equal in the eyes of God. You are either clothed in righteousness and a co-heir with Christ or you are not. If you are, all God sees is a righteous child.
- Deborah judged Israel so women can pastor a church. In Judges 4 – 5 it mentions Deborah as a judge. It also mentions that because the men wouldn’t do what they were supposed to they would receive no glory because a woman would defeat the enemy. God’s plan from day one was for men to rule and steward everything God put in their possession. When they neglect their duties things go awry. In this case God put Deborah as a judge over Israel as a rebuke, shaming the men for advocating their responsibilities. A simple study of the culture in that time will reveal this.
- The women Paul commended and praised for their hard work in the church surely tells us that women can lead a church. No, they did not hold authoritative positions to include teaching men. They were instrumental in the running of the church in other areas.
- We feel that women can, and should, do everything a man can do. After all, we don’t live in the stone ages. The problem starts with “feel”. Feel is an emotion and decisions based on emotions always cause problems. When we justify something due to feelings we nearly always compromise truth.
The reasons why I say women should not be in these positions is equally straightforward. Paul, in 1 Timothy 2:12-15, counselled the church on the subject. This is extremely unpopular today and much time has been spent trying to explain it away as not being relevant for today.
Problem one is women are not permitted to teach men because Adam was created first. When Adam was created he was given dominion and authority over everything. Everything received it’s identity from Adam. Eve was created last as a help-meet. That’s a hard one to explain in todays culture, but to make it simple it’s much more than a helper and companion. The popular term “soul mate” doesn’t even touch the significance nor the importance of this. You can not have two leaders. The term too many chiefs and not enough indians comes to mind.
The woman was deceived first. Why was this? It’s a good question that I have not found the answer to in scripture. I can guess that she was deceived due to the enemy playing on her emotions and emotional decisions tend to cause a lot of trouble. This is just conjecture though.
Trying to explain this away as not relevant for today raises the question, what else in the Bible isn’t relevant? If this no longer applies does making Jesus your Lord and savior no longer apply? What about honoring your father and mother, does it no longer apply? What about marriage that’s acceptable according to scripture…oops, we already threw that overboard. See how easy it is to discount more and more passages once you start tossing the ones you don’t like? It’s a deadly slippery slope.
God is a god of order. Everything has a purpose and a plan. He is the head, he appointed man to be His second in command here on earth ( see Ephesians 5:22-33 ) and the wife is second to the husband in authority. She is his equal in the eyes of God with a different position with different responsibilities. If you have a woman running the church she will be running the house. Again, you can not have to leaders. The idea of co-leaders is absurd and is a concilation to the sore looser. It doesn’t work, it never worked and never will. The two leaders will overshadow the organization with their disputes and disagreements creating chaos.
The woman being deceived brought about a curse. Part of the curse is the woman shall desire her husband’s position, but he will rule over her ( Genesis 3:16 ). We have women everywhere insisting on taking the mans position as if they have something to prove. Why would they want to take the man’s part of the burden from the curse as well as their own? It makes sense only in that it’s part of the curse.
Just the way 1 Timothy 2 has been explained away as not relevant for today causes much confusion. We lament that our men will not lead, they will not take the appointed position in the home or the church. Numerous studies show that women truly want a man who will lead in a Godly manner. We blame it on the culture and secularism. We blame it on the women’s liberation movement, behavior modifying drugs like Ritalin and anything but the church.
The truth is the church has caused the problem. In its desire to be culturally relevant, appeasing the “un-churched” we have shown our boys that the Bible isn’t that important. We don’t really believe what it says, despite what we say. We say we believe the whole Bible then allow women to preach and hold authority over men, then say that part of the Bible doesn’t apply any longer. Kids are not stupid and they grow up to be skeptical adults who say if that’s not relevant then the parts about being in fellowship with other believers, tithing, not being drunk, not having sex before marriage is not relevant either.
We tell them to lead then put women in leadership over them from the earliest days of Sunday school. We send them to VBS to be led by women. We send them home to a house run by a women with a submissive husband. We send them to school where the teachers are predominantly women and celebrate when women are ordained and lead a church. Then we wring our hands and wonder why men won’t lead. The answer is right here, you have shown them they really don’t have to. The Bible wasn’t serious about that.
Women do have a very important and vital role to play in ministry. Ministering, to disciple and mentore younger women. Titus 2 tells women to teach and instruct younger women. Women have a unique gift for hospitality that men just don’t have. There are many functions in the church that would be a disaster without the womans touch. Women are great comforters for the sick and the elderly. Women have a heightened sensitivity to spiritual things that a wise man will consider. Women can relate and speak a language that other woman understand. She can phrase things in a way that I can’t that will make sense to another woman. Whereas my response most likely will be unintentionally brash and offensive due to my not understanding the real issue.
What about women like Joyce Meyer and Beth Moore? They have women’s ministry, that’s their target. I’m not getting into the theology of what they teach, but the target demographic is women. As such there is no problem with their ministries. If men chose to put their selves in a position to sit under their teaching that is on them.
A question was posed on Church For Men on Facebook. The individual stated that his wife was a Presbyterian minister in California. She pastored a small church then moved on to a larger church. He felt isolated as the pastors husband and emasculated. He feels that he can’t discuss it with her as the pastor because of their relationship. When the natural order of things, as God placed them, is upended to appease feelings and secular culture the toll is high. In this case the toll is emasculated men who will not stand up to their potential, their calling and their anointing. Thereby creating a crisis in our culture, families and churches.
There’s much more I can say, but at over 1,500 words I’ll resist the urge. Understand that I’m not saying women who have taken positions in the church that put them over men are bad. Simply misguided and their pastors are at fault. The more the church strives to be relevant and hip to the prevailing cultural trends the less relevant and influential it becomes. Foresaking the truth for popularity only undermines ones credibility.