- SHEILA RHODES
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Tag Archives: His Word
*My husband, Pastor Dan Rhodes, was asked the following question by a pastor…”Can Women Serve God In Significant Leadership And Pastoral Roles?” He beautifully addresses the question according to the character of God and His Word with tremendous wisdom and insight.
TOUGH QUESTION Asked By A Pastor:
“Most will concede that there is ample evidence for women, under the covering of male leadership, to teach other women and children, to evangelize, witness for Christ, use any spiritual gifts, prophesy and help serve in many other capacities. But, is there any clear scriptural support for Christian women to be in governmental positions over men in the church (e.g., pastors, elders, bishops, or apostles)?”
Downloading God’s Answer…Discovered In His Word
What Are the Objections to Women Serving as Leaders in the Church?
1. Eve Disqualified Both Herself and ALL Women. Men point to Gen. 3:16 indicating that they should rule over women. But that wasn’t a command of God. He simply stated the tragic result of sin. Yet Adam’s sin was just as bad. He caved in to temptation, bringing sin upon the entire human race! (Rom. 5:12-14)
2. The Apostle Paul Refused to Allow Women to Teach or Have Authority Over Men (1 Tim. 2:9-15). Keep in mind that Paul was addressing a very prejudiced cultural world in which women held low social positions and were prohibited from training in the scriptures. Knowing that redeemed attitudes between men and women could not happen overnight, Paul set a godly structure over the authority struggles between men and women, bringing stability to both the Church and the home (1 Cor. 11:3–16; 14:34–35). He directed women to LEARN rather than try to exercise authority in the church (1 Tim. 2:11). Had Paul tried to abruptly reverse that social order, it would have caused utter chaos (1 Cori. 3:1-3).
What Did God Say in His Word About the Relationship Between Men and Women?
1. Before Sin Entered Humankind, Men and Women Were Equal in Authority. God commissioned BOTH Adam and Eve to rule together (Gen. 1:28). In their pre-fall relationship, they had equal access to God without competition, power struggles or abuse of authority. Created uniquely in God’s image, they ruled Eden with interdependence…inseparably committed to one another (Gen. 2:23-24).
2. In Redemption, God Removed ALL Barriers…Including Gender Prejudice (Gal. 3:28). Sin is the basis of quarrels, envy and striving for superiority (James 4:1-3). In redemption, both men and women submit to one another according to the gifting of God in them (Eph. 5:21-33). Through redemption, men and women are reunited to their original mission as co-rulers over the earth.
3. Are There Biblical Examples of Women in Leadership Roles? This was rare because of social prejudices. However, Deborah was a Prophetess called by God to Judge Israel (Judg. 4:4-10). Priscilla (whose name was mentioned before her husband’s) brought Doctrinal Correction to Apollos (Acts 18:18, 24-26). And the early church had Women Prophets (Acts 21:9) and Deaconesses (Tim. 3:8-11; Rom. 16:1-2).
What Then Shall We Do?
1. Return to the Pre-Fall Biblical Model with Redeemed Attitudes. Both men and women must lay aside fallen attitudes (Eph. 4:22-25) and allow their paradigm to be renewed according to God’s original design. God does not show partiality (Acts 10:34). He does not discriminate against women!
2. Evaluate Leadership Gifts Based on the Righteous Fruit of God’s Call. God redeems, calls, anoints and distributes gifts to whom He decides (1 Cor. 12:11-27), not according to male or female gender. Submission is not on the basis of “inferior” or “superior.” We submit to the Gifts and Calling in people, regardless of whether they are men or women.
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