*Women pastors – what does the Bible say?*
A key passage on the women pastors issue is 1Tim2:11-12, which reads, “I do not permit a woman to teach or to exercise authority over a man; rather, she is to remain quiet.” Paul restricts women from teaching or having spiritual authority over men. In the context the focus is on the concept of pastoring/shepherding. A pastor’s duties are primarily teaching, preaching (which involves teaching but also explaining, exhorting, rebuking) and shepperding (counseling, caring for the spiritual advancement of the flock). It is the preaching, teaching and shepherding over men that God, through Paul, restricts to men. A woman can teach man on non Biblical issues (maths, singing, languages and others).
-Some might say that a woman does teach man by SONGS, testimonies or personal conversations but in these situations man has the possibility to refute, question, debate, refuse to listen or to accept to believe and assimilate the information received without denying the spiritual authority of the church in which he hears these from a woman. And by the way, when the woman sings or gives a testimony in church, she is doing so under the supervision and spiritual authority of the pastor of the church. When a woman is a pastor, she is not under spiritual authority but she claims to be the spiritual authority.
-Some say LYDIA led the church that was gathering in her house, Acts 16:40, but she only housed the church, it does not say she lead it. Remember she was gathering previously with a group of women for prayer v13.
-Joel2:28-29 “And it shall come to pass afterward, that I will pour out my Spirit on all flesh; *your sons and YOUR DAUGHTERS SHALL PROPHECY*, your old men shall dream dreams, and your young men shall see visions. *Even on the male and FEMALE servants* in those days I will pour out my Spirit’ – this happens since Pentecost, all who receive Jesus receive the the Holy Spirit, but it does not say that all become pastors, or that some women can be pastors. Women can ‘prophesy’ or ‘preach’ to women Tit2:4 and can evangelize men.
–*Rom16:7 ‘Salute Andronicus and JUNIA*…who are noted AMONG THE APOSTLES” does not imply that Andronicus and Julia were among and equal with the 12 apostles of Jesus. Remember that Rev21/14 says that the New Jerusalem heavenly city at the end of history will only have 12 names of apostles on its foundation. Someone might be called apostle (meaning ‘sent one’) of a local church, but they cant be an apostle of Jesus, who only had and will ever have only 12 apostles. The apostles appointed ELDERS (pastors: ‘presbuteros’, ‘episkopos’, ‘poimen’, all in masculine in Greek), they didn’t appoint apostles, ‘apostolos’ (Tit1:5, 1Pet5:1-3, Acts14:23, 20:17)
–*All 12 apostles were MEN*, Paul’s disciples pastoring churches were MEN (Timothy, Trophimus, Epafroditus, Tichicus, Titus and others); for 1900 years pastors were MEN, only in the last 100 years women started to be pastors, as a result of the FEMINIST MOVEMENT. As much as we agree that women should have certain social rights (to drive, to teach in public schools, to take public positions, to vote), we do not agree that they should be usurping authority over men as teaching men on spiritual issues or pastoring. Satan wants men to act as women and women to act as men. God created man to be initiator and woman to be a responder, not the other way around, just as Jesus is the initiator and the church is the responder. See Eph5:32, the mystery of the husband – as head – and his wife is paralleled with the mystery of Jesus as the husband and the head of the church. A woman pastor is thus affirming she is the head of her husband. Satan lies again to Eve: ‘You will be like God’, you will be the head!!
–*The fact that some women ‘pastors’ have some ‘fruit’ does not confirm them as pastors:* remember that some will say to Jesus, ‘we have prophesied in your name, made miracles, cast out demons’ but Jesus will answer, ‘depart from Me, I never KNEW (‘GINOSKO’=knowing through personal relationship) you’ Mat7:23, their apparent fruit did not confirm them as genuine preachers!
-In 1Pet5:1-3, *every occurrence of the word, “elder(s),” is in the masculine* form in the Greek
–There are several lines of argument against this interpretation of the women pastors issue:
(1) Some argue: ‘Women were uneducated at that time, and therefore not qualified to be teachers’. The passage nowhere mentions education. Education is not mentioned as a qualification for church leadership in 1Tim3:1-13 or Tit1:6-9. If education was a requirement, few, if any, of Jesus’ disciples would have been qualified. Judas only was educated, and probably Matthew, who was a tax collector.
(2) Some argue: ‘Paul was only dealing with Artemis worship at Timothy’s church in Ephesus’. The context, and all of 1 Timothy for that matter, nowhere mention Artemis or the prominence of women in the worship of Artemis. If there was a problem with women usurping authority over men in the church in Ephesus, Paul would have addressed it directly.
(3) Some argue: ‘Paul is referring to husbands and wives, not men and women. Wives are not to teach or have authority over their husbands’. The Greek words could refer to husbands and wives, but the context indicates otherwise. Are only husbands to lift up holy hands in prayer or all men? Are only wives to dress modestly or all women (1Tim2:8-10)? The immediate context indicates that men and women in general are the subject, not husbands and wives exclusively.
(4) Some argue: ‘There are women in the Bible who served in ways that contradict this interpretation of 1Tim2:11-12’. Miriam, Deborah, Huldah, Priscilla, and Phoebe are the most commonly given examples.
*MIRIAM, DEBORAH AND HULDAH:* Miriam might have been a prophetess for women, she has never addressed as a prophet the whole congregation as Moses did (in fact she did a bit but not at God’s command: when she rebelled against Moses…). We do believe in women teaching women, as Paul instructs in Tit2/4. Miriam was leading the nation in singing, not in teaching and preaching. Women can lead music ministry, of course under the supervision of the pastor.
*In regards to PRISCILLA AND PHOEBE,* the New Testament nowhere describes them serving in a way that contradicts 1Tim2:11-12. Priscilla helped her husband Aquila to disciple Apollos in their home, she did not teach Apollos alone, maybe did not even say one word but approved what her husband said (Acts18:26), and her name is always by her husband’s name, never mentioned alone. Phoebe is simply identified as a servant/deaconess of the church (Rom16:1)
*THE FOUR DAUGHTERS of Philip* the evangelist (Acts2:19) are said to be prophesying but when Paul stayed in Philip’s house the prophet Agabus (a man) was sent by God from Jerusalem to Caesarea, 120km distance, to give a message to Paul (God gave directly to Paul 12 visions/messages in Acts but here He used prophet Agabus as a testimony for the others: will Paul be fearful or courageous when receiving news of future persecution?…and courageous Paul was, having received grace); God did not use the 4 daughters to pass a message to Paul; I believe they were prophesying to women and also evangelizing (just as their father), as women can evangelize men.
-Is3:12 ‘As for my people, *CHILDREN are their oppressors, and WOMEN rule over them*. O my people, they which lead thee cause thee to err, and destroy the way of thy paths.’ In this verse, God implies that children and women are leading the people astray. Children lack knowledge and women are not meant to be leaders above men. As in Rev2.20 where *Jezebel called herself a prophetess.*
When God chose women to be judge *(DEBORAH)* or prophets over men, it was as a rebuke, as God could not find a godly man to do His work, just as Israel wanted a king ‘as the other nations’ and God gave them Saul who was not spiritual, to chastise Israel, then in His grace gave them David but still allowed David and Solomon to have many wives from among Israel to chastise Israel, see 1Sam8:11; Just as He rebuked Israel in these verses:
-Is3:4 ‘And I will give children to be their princes, and babes shall rule over them.’ – children and babes have no wisdom to lead, resulting in oppression and social problems as described in verse 5.
-Ecl10:16 ‘Woe to thee, O land, when thy king is a child and thy princes eat (feast) in the morning!’
-Mat21:16 ‘…And Jesus saith unto them, Yea; have ye never read, Out of the mouth of babes and sucklings thou hast perfected praise? ‘ (as a rebuke to adults, babes did praise God but adults didn’t).
(5) Some argue: ‘Gal3:28 says that *men and women are equal in God’s eyes’*. The subject here regarding equality in Christ, is equal access to the salvation Christ offers, access to and fellowship with God. Men and women, Jews and Gentiles, slave and free are absolutely equal in this context. Church leadership is not the subject of Gal3:28, but this verse only applies to salvation, or else homosexuals can use this verse outside to its context to support homosexual marriage; or some could use it to support change of sex or ‘no gender’ theory that is taught in secular education lately.
Reason of prohibition of women pastoring is given in the next two verses: *”For Adam was formed first, then Eve; and Adam was not deceived, but the woman was deceived”* (1Tim2:13,14). The order of creation and the nature of the fall impacts spiritual leadership in the church, and in the family where man is the head (translation ‘source’ is wrong) of the woman just as Christ is the head of the church (see Eph5:22,33). Women are not to teach or have spiritual authority over men because women were created to be “helpers” to men and because Eve was deceived into sin. Through creation, and because of the Fall, God has chosen to give men the primary teaching authority in the church.
…end of part 1