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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)
Whenever I write about the gender roles that God has ordained I try to do so biblically and delicately. I do so delicately because I know many godly women who love the Lord and genuinely want to only serve Him. The suggestion that they may be overstepping the Lord is not one I make lightly or with joy. But biblically must be how we examine every situation; even the ones we may not like or agree with. Beloved, God has an order to the way He designed things. That order has man as the headship. He created man first. He created woman from man, as a suitable helper. This is not because societies were male dominated when the Bible was written. To make that argument is to make the same argument that liberal Christian denominations make for cultural bias. That the culture at the time Scripture was written has now changed and therefore Scripture must change. Nonsense. The Bible transcends all time and all cultures.
So in order to justify women in pastoral and leadership roles within the church their proponents scour the Bible to find any examples of prominent females in ministry and then read into the text what is simply not there. At the end of the day they are left with one example in 6000 years of God allowing a female in leadership over men and that was Deborah. This was not a joyous time in the kingdom beloved. That there were no men willing to lead. Nevertheless, Deborah deserves the recognition and respect for leading and following God. What we cannot do is take this one instance in 6000 years and think we have uncovered a prescriptive story about how things ought to be today. The reality is that the world has changed. Where women had their primary role in the home just 60 years ago, today we see women leading across the world. Not coincidentally, we see the demise of the family unit across this country. We cannot step out of the design of God and expect that there will not be consequences. Beloved, please understand this is not about dominance but rather it is about order. Eve was to be Adam's helper, not his servant. Women can serve in nearly any role a man can within the church. They can exhibit the same gifts of the Holy Spirit as man. They can have a word of knowledge. They can speak in a foreign tongue. They can prophesy. What they are not permitted to do is teach (preach) or to exercise authority over men. No matter how much people try to twist the Bible to suit their own agendas they cannot escape the key verses today on this subject. They are incontrovertible.
These key verses come from the Apostle Paul to his young prote'ge' Timothy, who was going to pastor the Church at Ephesus. These instructions are not vague. They are crystal clear. Women are not permitted to teach, which includes preaching, or exercise authority over men within the church structure. God even provides the reason why! Because it was Eve who was deceived! Now, this does not make women less. This makes their role different. Many Christo-feminist advocates will then point to the portion that says she is to remain silent and exclaim; that can't be true! I think that being hyperbolic is not helpful. All Paul is doing here is reinforcing the point. In matters of teaching and authority, women are to be silent in the church. It is a reiteration of the point, not some catch all doctrine that can be used to portray Paul as somehow being misogynistic. Let us also not lose sight of the fact that we all believe that every word in the Bible is God breathed -- written by the Lord Himself. Be careful with how you are criticizing Paul because you are also criticizing God. I say this as the backdrop to a new story on Charisma News, which clearly advocates for women in leadership over men. Author Eddie Hyatt wrote this latest affront to the Bible and it can be found at this link:
Did Paul have a woman as his pastor is the attention grabbing headline. I know the answer! No. He absolutely did not have a woman as a pastor. If he did, that would not only violate the key verses which he wrote himself, but it would thus violate the Word of God as well. Let us reason together beloved as we review this article to see how badly Eddie Hyatt mangles the Bible to proof text the conclusion he already has come to.
Phoebe was a woman leader for whom Paul had great respect as is borne out in the language he used to describe her. The power of his words is lost in our English translations but is very obvious in the Greek (Rom. 16:1-2). In fact, an argument could be made from Paul's own words that Phoebe had once functioned in a pastoral-type role toward him. -- Eddie Hyatt
No Eddie. No such argument can be made based on the text. Note what Hyatt does though. First he establishes a general fact that has nothing to do with the allegation he then makes about being a pastor. Was Phoebe respected by Paul? Absolutely it is fair to draw that conclusion. Does the fact that Paul respected her mean that she was his pastor? Of course not. Secondarily however, Hyatt plays the "we don't really know" card. The power of the words of Paul have not been lost in translation beloved. God is not some powerless entity that cannot properly ensure that the limitations of our languages, which He created, somehow limit His Word. Let us proceed however with the argument from Eddie Hyatt: