Precious Jesus

"Afresh, precious, precious Jesus, I resign this body to You, for doing or suffering, for living or dying. Will You accept it? Will You use me for Your glory more than heretofore, that You may have some little return for all the benefits You have done to me? Oh, do grant this request; my heart longs for it, my spirit pleads for it; and "if You will, You can." You know the hot temptation of which I am the subject. Bring Your glory out of it, and keep me from the evil, and it shall be well." - Ruth Bryan

Sunday, January 15, 2012

Are women who pastor churches sinning against God?

This is a subject that isn't very popular within the realm of Christianity, it is hotly debated with more and more women taking what they believe is their rightful place in the pulpit. I believe it goes back to one of the five solas, sola scriptura. Do we really believe God's word is the sole authority and are we submissive to it? If you believe women have a right to preach, you do not adhere to sola scriptura.

We start with the Holy Spirit inspired teaching from the Apostle Paul in 1 Timothy 2, 'I do not permit a woman to teach or to exercise authority over a man; rather, she is to remain quiet. For Adam was formed first, then Eve; and Adam was not deceived, but the woman was deceived and became a transgressor.' Here Paul clearly states women are not to be in a position of authority, {which is what teaching is}, over men. Then he states two reasons why, 1. it goes out of the order of creation and 2. the woman was the one who fell into sin. A third reason is found in the phrase 'Exercise authority over', this phrase means 'to domineer, govern, acting as an autocrat – literally, self-appointed (acting without submission)'. Women who insist on teaching are in defiance of the God given command to be submissive, which is what verse 11 states, 'a woman must quietly receive instruction with entire submissiveness'. This applies to women of all ages, periods of time, from when Paul spoke this truth until Christ returns. If the time has come and women are now allowed to preach, where is the verse[s] to say so? Where is an example from God's word of a woman being permitted to preach/expound the word of God to a gathered body of believers?

I have discussed this topic with a gentleman who I believe may be from a Charismatic background, his response was Paul was not making a universal statement, he was speaking to women of his day. I find that hard to believe in light of the fact of the reasons behind why women are not allowed to teach, these reasons have not changed over time have they? I think not, even so, this pastor was not convinced, so I proceeded to 1 Timothy chapter 3 where the qualifications for the office of bishop/elder/pastor/preacher are laid out in verses 1-7, 'The saying is trustworthy: If anyone aspires to the office of overseer, he desires a noble task. Therefore an overseer must be above reproach, the husband of one wife, sober-minded, self-controlled, respectable, hospitable, able to teach, not a drunkard, not violent but gentle, not quarrelsome, not a lover of money. He must manage his own household well, with all dignity keeping his children submissive, for if someone does not know how to manage his own household, how will he care for God's church? He must not be a recent convert, or he may become puffed up with conceit and fall into the condemnation of the devil. Moreover, he must be well thought of by outsiders, so that he may not fall into disgrace, into a snare of the devil.'
These verses leave no doubt about the qualifications for elders, they must be men, as 'husband of one wife' indicates. This was not enough to convince this gentleman, his response was an opinion and not the word of the Lord.

I am amazed at the growing number of ordained ministers who are female and NO ONE approaches them and points them to their sin? Yes, I said sin, the sin of rebellion, isn't that what it's called when you blatantly disobey a command from God? Or do we pick which verses we'll adhere to and which ones we'll toss to the wind?

So what is the sin of rebellion? 1 Samuel 15:23 says this, "For rebellion is as the sin of divination, and presumption is as iniquity and idolatry. Because you have rejected the word of the LORD, he has also rejected you from being king."According to the word of God, rebellion equals the sin of divination, meaning what? From Gill's Exposition of the Entire Bible, "For rebellion is as the sin of witchcraft,.... Or divination (e), in whatsoever way it was exercised; for there were various sorts of it among the Heathens, and all condemned by the law of God, Deuteronomy 18:10. Now rebellion against God, or disobeying his commands, though in things otherwise, were they not forbidden by him, lawful to be done, is as heinous a sin as to be guilty of witchcraft, or any kind of divination forbidden by the law of God, and deserves as sore a punishment". - {from biblecc}

So what happened when Saul rejected the word of the Lord? God rejected him; is it any different today? Does God somehow overlook women who disobey the clear teachings of the Apostle Paul and insist on being in the pulpit based on silly excuses like 'we are all equal in God's eyes'?

It could not be more clear, women who insist on pastoring churches are in outright blatant sin, and we know that nothing sinful will enter into God's kingdom. God forgives all sin, but only if it is confessed and forsaken, that is what repentance is all about.
These women must have huge holes in their Bibles from ripping out pages pertaining to their sin of rebellion; this is no light matter. After all, it is a dreadful thing to fall into the hands of the living God.

This post is not my opinion, here is what men of God, such as John MacArthur, say...

From R. L. Dabney, "“This common movement for women’s rights,’ and women’s preaching, must be regarded, then, as simply in­fidel. It cannot be candidly upheld without attacking the inspiration and authority of the Scriptures.” read the entire transcript here...

Biblical womanhood is taught here...

Women preachers is also addressed here...Link
As well as here...

And finally, commentary from Matthew Henry on 1 Timothy 2:12-14, " According to Paul, women must be learners, and are not allowed to be public teachers in the church; for teaching is an office of authority, and the woman must not usurp authority over the man, but is to be in silence. But, notwithstanding this prohibition, good women may and ought to teach their children at home the principles of religion. Timothy from a child had known the holy scriptures; and who should teach him but his mother and grandmother? Aquila and his wife Priscilla expounded unto Apollos the way of God more perfectly; but then they did it privately, for they took him unto them, Here are two very good reasons given for the man’s authority over the woman, and her subjection to the man, v. 13, 14. Adam was first formed, then Eve; she was created for the man, and not the man for the woman; then she was deceived, and brought the man into the transgression."

Historical Christianity agrees with the Apostle Paul, it is only in our modern day culture the Apostle's words are twisted and his authority questioned.


Anonymous said...

You are correct, Lyn. It's bad enough that women now feel the necessity to take over the man's role in the church, but is it any worse that men do not know or care or are so timid that they will not stand for the Word of God-I think so. Even worse is the prevailing sentiment growing in the church that places the Word in second or third place or lower. Good post.


lyn said...

I am amazed when 'Christians' defend this rebellion, dance around the clear teachings of God's word, and defend women who sin against God by placing themselves in the pulpit. It's just as Dr. Boice states in his book 'Whatever Happened to The Gospel of Grace?: Rediscovering the Doctrines That Shook the World', we have forsaken sola Scriptura and compromised with the world. We must return to believing and submitting to biblical truth, or nonsense like this will continue to grow like a cancer.

Thank you for stopping by.


Garth said...

Hi Your post was a succint and accurate overview of one of the many divisive issues facing the Church today. I have been told by so many friends and family members (both men and women) that 1 Timothy 2 no longer applies because Paul held that view for historical reasons. Sometimes my answer is to ask which other parts of the Scriptures we should rip out along with this. Also, I must confess I often cringe when I see an article with a similar title to this one. This is because so often the arguments for women pastors are so lacking in Biblical support I often 'feel sorry' for the proponents. Mercifully, this was not the case with your article. Great article and I commend your courage to tell the truth as revealed in the Bible. God Bless.

lyn said...

Hello Garth,

Thank you for stopping by, all glory for this article goes to the One from whom it came...God.

I do expect to receive some backlash, but I know the responses will be opinions only.

As I have stated, this is a growing problem, and it is sin. We have lost our way when it comes to sola scriptura, as is evident in the mass ordaining of women. We must defend truth with truth.

blessings to you

Anonymous said...

This manifisation of sin is rooted in autonomy, as all sin is. Women who insist on playing pastor simply will not conform to the will of God. Nor do the men and women who would submit themselves to the rebellious and pretentious women who violate the commands of God. If there were the slightest ambiguity in the Word of God, perhaps one could simply hope that ignroance reigned in these circumstances, but in fact Scripture is absolutely crystal clear on the matter.

Jessica said...

Amen. It does boil down to whether or not you hold to Sola Scriptura.
There was a big Twitter debate going on about this very thing yesterday, and the lady who was defending women pastors kept pointing to the teachings of women pastors and a dvd about women in ministry (done by a woman, of course). Every time someone tried to point her back to Scripture, she evaded the question or referred back to the DVD. Clearly, what these women pastors were teaching held more authority in her view than what the Bible actually says about it.

Anonymous said...

This is a difficult subject in modernity and I think it is a serious problem and one of the reasons that men are not attending services.

But I would have to say that teaching (now days) doesn't necessarily connote authority over. I have few times received excellent instruction female in the work field, they were not my boss and they still taught me the ropes.

In Pauls day all teachers connoted authority. To be a teacher, you had to be knowledgable and to be knowledgable you had to study the Word at a synagogue. Women were not permitted to study with the men. They had to sit in their own groups listening. The women of that day were illiterate.

Today, bibles are everywhere and with many version and ample study tools. Women are not illiterate and can teach. Today teaching can and does often so apart from authority. So, I don't have a problem with a woman teaching in a Sunday school class (depending on the subject and also whether or not the lady is usurping authority).

In conclusion, I agree with you that women should not be put in authority (i.e they should not hold a pastorate or be and elders, deacons or overseers) over men, but, I disagree with the notion of all teachers being in authority today.

On another note, I know quite a few women who have found themselves in leadership positions because there were no men to take the reins.

lyn said...

Women can teach Sunday School, IF there are no brothers in Christ in the class. We can teach children and other women but that is all. As far as women who are in leadership roles because no men will step up, that does not make it right {if you are referring to leadership within the church}. A church would be better off to close its doors rather than allow a woman a position of authority. To teach/preach/ expound God's word is all the same and is a position of authority, as Paul clearly condemns.

Katy~The Country Blossom said...

I completely agree Lyn! Thanks for the post!

lyn said...

You're welcome Katy, to God be the glory.

Thanks for the visit

Michael Nelson said...

All I can say is if the Bible isn't for today, then throw it out and write a new one (wait, they are doing it) . If we don't like certain Scripture, find one that will adhere to your stance and belief. People wonder why the Body has so many doctrines.

lyn said...

You are exactly right Michael, there are multitudes of denominations because most aren't willing to adhere to all of scripture as authoritative. This is why I claim no allegiance to any denomination, my authority is Christ and the word of God.
Man chooses to cherry-pick what is and isn't relevant, which is why we have the mess we have today in the visible church. Take heart, Christ knows who His own are.

Anonymous said...

I have struggled with this reality, as I am a woman, and have been called by GOD to share HIS Word, and preach the Good News. The HOLY SPIRIT has been clear with me, that the WORD of God is true in this matter,as in all matters. I am to share HIS Word with other women and children.

lyn said...


You are right, you should share His truth with other women and children, there is no sin in that. Praise God He reveals truth to His chosen people. Women can and should proclaim truth to unbelievers, to other women, to our children, grandchildren, and great grandchildren. We can even correct error with truth in a believer, as Priscilla and Aquila did with Apollos. They took him aside, they never corrected him in the synagogue. Instead, they waited until the time of worship was over. This is how we do it biblically.

Thanks for your comment, may His blessings be upon you this day sister.


Susan said...

Thanks for this, Lyn, I watched MacArthur's clip and read the comments, but will read the rest later, I'm tired!!! I do want to mention that I at one time thought (like I saw mentioned) that Paul's words were for another time with different rules for etiquette in their society....and then of course there was Deborah, a very powerful judge of Israel mentioned in the book of Judges. But as I've grown and seen more of life, the Lord has been gracious to show me that I was wrong about how I viewed this topic. Pastor MacArthur is correct in stating that men aren't better than women in God's estimation. He doesn't differentiate between Jew and Gentile, and male and female. However God has designed us for different roles. God designed women to be a "helpmeet" for men.

Like the comments about the difference between teaching and that of having a position of authority.

I have a blender and a crock pot. They have different functions and different reasons to be used for in my kitchen. If I expect my blender to do the job of a crock pot, that is just silly. Each has a different reason for being in my kitchen. I know that isn't a perfect analogy, best one I could come up with on the fly...I'm exhausted and need to go to bed, but wanted to say how much I appreciate the great topics and wisdom you share on your blog. :)

lyn said...


Actually, your analogy was quite good.

I must give all glory to God for what this blog contains, and I praise Him that you enjoy what you find here.

Susan said...

Thanks Lyn, I finished your post, and the Dabney article as well, and both are excellent. There are several things said by Dabney that helped to strengthen and clarify the truth of God's system of order...I learned much from his thoughts and this portion:

"Doubtless that spirit of willfulness, which is a feature of our native carnality in both man and woman, tempts us to feel that any subordination is a hardship, so that it is felt while God has been a Father to the man, he has been but a stepfather to the woman. Self-will resents this natural subordination as a natural injustice. But self-will forgets that ” order is heaven’s first law;” that subordination is the inexorable condition of peace and happiness, and this as much in heaven as on earth ; that this subjection was not imposed on woman only as a penalty, but as for her and her offspring’s good ; and that to be governed under the wise conditions of nature is often a more privileged state than to govern. God has conformed his works of creation and providence to these principles. In creating man he has en­dued him with the natural attributes which qualify him to labor abroad, to subdue dangers, to protect, to govern. He has given these qualities in less degree to woman, and in their place has adorned her with the less hardy, but equally admirable, attri­butes of body, mind and heart which qualify her to yield, to be protected, and to “guide the home.” This order is founded, then, in the unchangeable laws of nature. Hence all attempts to reverse it must fail, and must result only in confusion."

That really is the bottom line for me; "the spirit of willfulness", how true!!!

Also what you say about witchcraft...and truly I can see how our nation has suffered from allowing this undermining of God's word in our society, but especially (and much more sadly) in our churches by making confusion where once it was orderly.

I also agree with: "she has confounded a human impulse with the Spirit of vocation", and also his reference to "the presumption of Uzzah".

His closing comments about the blessings that come from living in a society that largely enjoys the wisdom and blessings derived from highly esteeming God's word, and how women shouldn't undermine that blessing really hit home. We are seeing the consequences of the undermining of Godly teachings, by substituting the mixing of truth with lies and man's morality over God's word. The evidence of the final outcome of rebellion (of even seemingly good women preachers) whatever good short-term benefit there might be (very superficial, as he makes clear with his explanations for what must shortly follow such "blessings"), the long-term effects are disastrous.

When we suppose God's wisdom and word for us is harsh, it isn't. It is just our flesh that doesn't want to bow to Him and wants to be superior and know more than Him, to our ultimate downfall.

lyn said...

You said it Susan...pride is the chief sin that will always exalt man above God, in all things. We must battle against pride raising its ugly head in our lives daily. When humility rules, all is well. When pride takes over, it gets ugly...