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Charisma News Leveraging Bicklegate to Advance Women in Church Leadership

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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. - 1Timothy 2:12-14 (ESV)

I have written a few times on the subject of women in leadership over men in God's church. The subject gives me no joy as I personally know women who could preach the paint off the wall. The possession of skill however, does not constitute direction from God. In many cases, God draws us out of where we are comfortable so that we can learn to be more reliant upon Him. Ironically, that was why He called my to preach - because it was the lats thing I wanted to do. Speaking in front of a crowd was one of my biggest fears and preaching is what helped me to overcome it because I was never more reliant upon God, then when I preached. The subject of women in positions of church power however should be an easy one because the key verses clearly state that God has said - I DO NOT PERMIT. Not only that, but God tells us why! No matter how much dancing the women's lib contingency does, they cannot escape these verses. They try to say that Paul somehow hated women without the consideration of divine inspiration. The words above are directly from God - not Paul. They bring up irrelevant examples such as women who prophesied, which is allowed by God. They change names from Junias to Junia and then pretend that he/she was of all things an apostle, which she most assuredly was not. The take Greek words like Diakonos, which meant helper at the time it was written, and pretend that it meant deacon. Granted it eventually would be where the church position of deacon came from but that would not be for another thousand years! I have no dog in this fight. I am just a guy telling you what the bible says. Charisma News on the other hand presents so many things contrary to God that it is of little surprise that they host writers that advocate for disobeying the word of God when it comes to women in leadership. The above linked article however tries to do so subtly, by using the Mike Bickle fiasco to advance the cause and as such it needs to be called out. So, let us reason once more together.

"When I first heard about the sexual scandal involving Mike Bickle and the International House of Prayer in Kansas City, Missouri, in December, my initial reaction was defensive. I didn't want to believe the charges. But I cringed on Dec. 12, 2023, when Bickle released his own confession. And my heart sank when details surfaced about another woman who had been involved with Bickle in his earlier years as a youth pastor. It became obvious that there had been a disturbing pattern of sexual abuse at IHOPKC, and with it, a pattern of hiding that abuse. The IHOP scandal is a harsh reminder that we have a much bigger problem. The worst thing we can do is go back to business as usual when the investigation ends. We need to stop, mourn for the victims, grieve for our own hardness of heart and publicly repent for the sin of sexual abuse." - J Lee Grady

Huh? Let's get this straight. Mike Bickle sexually abused women, not every man in the church. What Grady is engaging in here is elevating a pet issue of his, which is unbiblical concept of women in leadership, on the back of a much more grievous problem. You see the problem in IHOPKC is not that women were not allowed by God to be pastors. It is that the Charismaniacal church as a whole venerates their cult of personality pastors. Just listen to Dr. Michael Brown and Sam storms gush over Bickle before this all came out a year ago in the American Gospel roundtable. People have been ringing the warning bell for decades about the cult in Kansas City and places like Charisma News rebuked any attempt to speak ill of the great prophet Mike Bickle. Oops. The abuse was not hidden because of women not being allowed to lead men. It was because you see what happens if they dare to come forward! Just look at Jane Doe number one, who was VILIFIED by Charisma News. Steven Strang said she was just being used by the devil to bring a good old boy like Bickle down. I cannot speak for J. Lee Grady, who writes for Steven Strang, but my heart is good on this one. I have been calling for the end to the cult in KC for over a decade now.

"For more than two decades I've been confronting the abuse of women and girls in developing countries where gender-based violence is common. I work in communities where rape is widespread, sexual violence is normal, polygamy is legal and the forced marriage of underage girls is considered a man's right. When I start working in a country where men consider women inferior, I always begin with the pastors. I teach them how Jesus elevated women"how He healed bleeding women, defended women who were falsely accused, brought ignored women into the spotlight and empowered women to be vocal witnesses of His Resurrection. Then, I always challenge the men to repent for having hard hearts. It's a beautiful thing to watch when men from countries such as Congo, Tanzania, Bolivia, El Salvador or India kneel in front of women and repent for cruelty, domestic abuse, polygamy, abandonment, harassment and other forms of misguided male dominance. In one case in 2019, the men from a village in Uganda wept as they renounced a saying their forefathers had passed down to their sons for hundreds of years. That saying was: "Our cows are more valuable than our wives." The men repented of promoting that idea, and they broke free from centuries of male domination." - J. Lee Grady

This is just wrong. It is unbiblical as well. What Grady is teaching here is that women are literally raped because men won't let them act in authority over men within the paradigm of God's church. Even though it is what God expressly says in the key verses. God is not unclear here. He even provides the reason for why He will not allow women to lead men within the church. Grady is not comparing apples and oranges. He is comparing apples and orangutans. The fact that women cannot preach or teach with authority over men does not make them inferior. It means they have different giftings and different roles that are just as important in the body of Christ. The biblical examples he gives are being misrepresented here. Healing the woman with the issue of blood was not an example of Jesus elevating her but rather healing her. I am unsure who Grady thinks Jesus defended but the woman at the well was guilty. Jesus did not defend her, He just pointed out the hypocrisy of those wishing to kill her while they themselves were sinful. That woman though was literally caught in the act of adultery. Only sinful men with agendas can read the accounts of the life of Christ and think they somehow elevated anyone other than Christ. It is HIS gospel. Jesus also did not empower women to be vocal witnesses of His resurrection. That is a stretch straight out of unbiblical tales like "The Chosen." The first people to find the empty tomb were the women because their ROLE, was to prepare the body for burial. The fact that Jesus spoke to them first simply means He is no respecter of person, but it does not change what He then wrote in the key verses. We each have roles ordained by God. This "women can do anything men can do" mantra is straight from the carnal women's liberation movement.

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Credentialed Minister of the Gospel for the Assemblies of God. Owner and founder of 828 ministries. Vice President for Goodwill Industries. Always remember that in all things God works for the good of those who love Him and are called according to (more...)
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