submit to your husband"...Headship
Most of the secular and Christian portions of the
western world are concerned that society be fair, respectful, and dispensing of
equality to women. Much debate is held about the various roles of men & women. And, there
is fret about hidden barriers to women and the presence of "glass ceilings", "pink ceilings",
and unequal pay.
These are not only "worldly concerns" but concerns
of true Jesus believers. Now, I am not advocating for or against women as pastors; but I am
advocating that we see what the Bible says and then think & pray about it in our churches
when (1) we are in need of pastors, & (2) when we Jesus followers encounter a man or
woman who thinks they have been called by God into the ministry.
When God told Adam & Eve, "Your desire will be
for your husband, and he will rule over you (Genesis 3:16)", He was describing just one of
the unfortunate consequences of The Fall. These were not directions for a "right
life"! When we look through the lens of the Christian view from the Bible, we see specific
directions about the roles of men and women in the family...about the "chain of authority", so to speak. As you
think about the apostolic commands Paul gave, remember that God speaks through Paul in
scripture and does so in the context of other parallel commands.
You can't pick scriptural
things apart and take them out of context if you want to get at The Truth. If you
is. And He is our creator and sustainer. Then He creates Truth. [check out attributes]
greatest messenger: God sent His son to be a messenger of The Truth and the
Gospel...the apostles to
continue it. Jesus = God's Word in living form.
- Scripture. Through divine inspiration, people chosen of God
have been divinely inspired ("breathed into" by the "breath" of God) to speak/record The Word
of God which, protected by the Holy Spirit, has been recorded into The Bible. Being The Word of God,
the Bible is a book of The Truth.
marriages: the husband and wife are commanded (and can be divinely enabled to do so)
to "cleave unto one another"
- Paul said to
the early Christians: "Now that faith has come, we are no longer under the supervision
of the law. You are all sons of God through faith in Jesus Christ, for all of you who were
baptized into Christ have clothed yourselves with Christ. There is neither Jew nor Greek, slave
nor free, male nor female, for you are all one in Christ Jesus (Galatians 3:25-28)." God
Himself chose Deborah as a judge to lead all of Israel (Judges Chapters 4 & 5). So the Old
Testament plainly shows a women in the highest office of the land...the leader of God's chosen
people. The first humans to tell the Gospel truth that Jesus had arisen were women
(Matthew 28:1). And then Paul declares (see above) that...as to the followers of Jesus &
the organization of the universal Church...there is no difference between men &
So why do so many of our churches persist in applying the
historical cultural practice of keeping women out of headship...blanketly denying women
the roles of teacher, minister, pastor, senior pastor, etc? Broad, multinational Christianity
probably requires a number of approaches to its practice (but also even in one nation...due to
the fact that human beings are so different). Jesus spoke to the effect that whoever is not
against Him is for Him (Mark 9:40). Does such an exclusionary "church" (men...are they being
influenced/moved by the workings of Satan?) stance prevent many shepherds from being the
shepherds God called them to be?
letter about headship (to believers @ Corinth): I Corinthians 11:3...God is the "head"
of Christ...Christ is the "head" of every man, and the "head" of the woman is man (might this
"man" be fulfilled by way of the church's ruling group of deacons, elders, or Board of
Trustees, rather than by excluding women as pastors?).
letter about headship (to believers @ Ephisus): Ephesians 5:21-33...believers to
submit to each other out of reverence for Christ...wives to submit to husbands ["to put things
in order under"...to submit] as to the Lord for the husband is the head of the wife as Christ
is the head of the church....husbands to love the wife as Christ loved the church. He who loves
his wife loves himself [actually and truly loves himself].
In short, and considering all of the above, shouldn't churches dig really deeply into being certain
of the fact that (1) a person has gotten a life's call from God to preach, pastor, teach,
etc....and (2) has gotten a call to their particular local body of believers...and far less concern
as to that persons gender?
Scripture lays out God's formulae for God's
best for mankind while in this brief life on earth. It is the procedure manual, the policy manual,
the shop manual for how we humans can have a fulfilled, joy-filled, happy life...a life of peace.
Happiness truly comes in holiness. But we aren't to judge our lives by how well we keep the
rules...that is living life by "The Law"! When you consider church positions & relationships,
consider the whole counsel of God...God's Word [the Bible]...through prayer, depending on God to
lead you into The Truth. Yes, we are concerned about societal rights in free countries. But
we need to be more concerned that we find the "Way" and the "Formula" to the maximally fulfilled
life...that we find "God's Best" as He has so freely offered it to all of us! His best is when we
rest in Him...when we accept the divine grace that desires an actual relationship with Him
(not just "head knowledge" about Him).
***give me your comments about this
check out the Highest
(posted: 10 August 2000; last addition 1 January