How Far Will Evangelicals Go To Exclude Women In Ministry?

Romans16:Greet Andronicus and Junia ,my kinsman and my fellow prisoners,who are of note among the apostles,who also were in Christ before me.

It is quite evident that women held prominent leadership roles in the early church.

When the first edition of the New International Version of scriptures came out,certain Evangelicals changed the name Junia to Junius–a man’s name.Was that an attempt to restructure the Bible to legitimate their own chauvinist ideas about who should serve in leadership roles in the church?

Southern Baptists get nervous when they read in Acts2:18,God ordained women to prophesy(preach) from the earliest days of the church.

We read in Scripture that the apostle Philip had daughters who preached(Acts21:8-9) and about Euodia and Syntyche,who were leaders in the church at Philippi(Philippians4:2).Women such as Priscilla played key teaching roles in the spiritual formation of male leaders(Acts18:26).

Paul in 1Tim3:11 continues the qualifications of deacons by addressing women,Women similarly must be grave,not slanderers,temperate,faithful in all things.(Referring to deaconesses?Rom16:1,I commend to you Phoebe our sister,who is a deaconess of the church which is in Cenchrea.)

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9 Comments on “How Far Will Evangelicals Go To Exclude Women In Ministry?”

  1. Greg Bailey Says:

    Oooo! You are really meddling now Bill. I don’t think scripture in anyway affirms women as Elder types, but I agree, the Timothy passage could very easily be translated “the women” not the wives. It is in most other literature. Add Phoebe, and I think you definitely have warrant for deaconesses. The problem is that deacons act like ignorant elders ….no, they act like rulers in most Baptist churches. In other words, they exert influence that elders should, therefore women are excluded from such service. I think from Titus and 1 Tim and Romans 16 that there are some ministries that are unique to women (not just hospitality and young children). Therefore qualified women who assist in the minsitry can (and should sometimes) be recognized by the Body as deaconesses!

  2. Greg Bailey Says:

    I am not sure you can say that it is obvious women had significant leadership roles and apply it to today.
    But, honestly, most churches are ruled by women. I know, I am in one right now. Two deacons wives rule the roost.

  3. Greg,
    It is also sad that in most churches if you have a “male”organ and have never been divorced then you are elected as a deacon.Hardly anything else matters.

  4. Greg Bailey Says:

    Agreed. The church I am in now is in big trouble for such. A few years ago the pastor and some of the old guard had a falling out (I have no idea why or who was at fault), many left and many just sat down. The pastor rushed 4 or 5 guys into being deacons. Eliminated a term limit (I am not for term limits if your deacons are legit), and now we are stuck with 3-4 guys (one who supposedly isn’t on the board now but acts as if he is). The only one of them with a servants’ heart is divorced (prior to claiming Christ) and he is still (7 years later) very self consciencious about whether he qualifies or not. Our pastor (the reason I joined the church and became very active-to include leading most of the music) has left and these guys now attempt to run things largely behind closed doors. Funny, they really seem to take marching orders from one of the deacons wives. I have met with she and her husband to try to shed a little light on them, but alas “when one is physically blind, they know they can’t see. When one is spiritually blind, they think they see quite well.”
    Nothing kills a church faster than unspiritual leadership.
    Grace Alone,

  5. John Teets Says:

    The original post is tired feminst dogma with no understanding of the scriptures. Being of note to apostles does not make one an apostle. Prophesying does not make one a preacher. Sharing truth with Apollos does not make one a mentor. The Biblical prohibition on women in authority in the church is pre-sinper I Timothy and deals with God’s eternal purposes. If women would simply serve God HIS way, all would be well. When they try to serve THEIR OWN way, there is chaos and disorder.

  6. John,
    Great insight.Thanks for your comments.

  7. Greg Says:

    And if we men would serve as he decrees, few of our women would feel the need to do otherwise.

  8. John Teets Says:

    I, like many who stick with the Bible on this issues, am harder on men than women. Most women get along great with me and I highly value the spiritual gifts of women, including my own wife. It is a tragedy that many men seek position, honor and money while ignoring their wives and families. Women are doing the same in many cases now. I have no patience for either.

    However, there is now a culture of women ministers where the lack of integrity in dealing with the Bible makes itself extant in other areas and some of what I hear is very frightening. There is also a problem with sexual purity among some women ministers. Multiple affairs and all manner of uncleanness was an eye-opener to me when I was confided in. No matter what the gender, disobedience to the word opens one up to many sins and it is nothing to play with.

  9. Sam Says:

    Please forgive my being late to reading this. Could you clarify your interpretation of women’s roles in the Church? Many thanks.

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