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)
For God is not a God of confusion but of peace. As in all the churches of the saints, the women should keep silent in the churches. For they are not permitted to speak, but should be in submission, as the Law also says. If there is anything they desire to learn, let them ask their husbands at home. For it is shameful for a woman to speak in church. -- 1Corinthians 14:33-35 (ESV)
Beloved, I know plenty of God-fearing Christian women who can preach the paint off the walls. I consider them friends. This has never been a subject that has brought me any joy. Yet I continuously get emails from Christian women who want to know what God has to say about the very controversial subject of women in the pulpit. When one approaches the Bible objectively and not trying to prove a pre-bias, one must conclude that women are not permitted to hold teaching or preaching positions of authority over men. Our two verses today come from different books and address the topic the exact same way. These are directional passages. They are instructional by nature. The Timothy verses are actually Paul instructing young Timothy as he headed off to pastor the Church at Ephesus. There is no ambiguity in these verses beloved. The language of "I do not permit" and "they are not permitted" is not open for a different interpretation. Those who defend the rise of Christo-feminism know this and do not dispute what the word says so they attack why they think it was said. They engage in what I call scriptural gymnastics.
Suddenly they are cultural experts about the inner workings of the church at Corinth. Suddenly Paul wrote this because of a specific problem with women gossiping in THAT church but not to be taken as instruction for the church. This is a hollow argument since nowhere else in the bible do we pretend that the cultural issues have any impact on what God wrote. Another tact is to turn Paul into a misogynist and ignore the fact that we believe in divine inspiration. God wrote the bible beloved, not Paul. Not only did He place this prohibition on women but He even tells us why in the Timothy passages -- because Eve was deceived in the garden. Before you start questioning the fairness of God you must realize that He decides and His ways are far above ours. He is the same God that refused to allow Moses to see the Promised Land because he struck the rock. He is the same God who struck Uzzah dead for trying to steady the Ark of the Covenant and not let it fall to the ground. Besides using culture and turning Paul into a woman hater, Christo-feminists love to exalt the roles some women have played in the bible as if that must mean we can dismiss the directional and instructive passages above. Hermeneutics do not work that way. We do not bypass clear instruction by jumping through imaginary hoops and inflating the truth about what role some women did play in the bible. Why? Because no one is suggesting women have no role to play. Women have served the Lord in compelling fashion throughout history and will continue to do so. They have been great helpers, prophets, and leaders of ministries. They just are forbidden from teaching and preaching with authority over men in God's church. Much like Eve insisted on the forbidden fruit many in the church today in the Christo-feminist movement are essentially asking -- did God really say? Yes, He did. So let us reason once more through the above linked article that seeks to elevate women in the bible far beyond reality.
"In honor of March being Women's History Month, I am here presenting a sampling of women in the Bible who functioned in all kinds of leadership roles. My motive in presenting this is twofold: First of all, I pray that it will affirm those women who sense a call of God but are hampered by doctrinal questions about the validity of such a call. Secondly, I hope to influence others to rethink their theology that puts restraints on the ministry of women in the church. I am convinced that we will not see the great spiritual awakening for which many are praying apart from the full participation of the female members of Christ's body." -- Eddie Hyatt
If you really wanted to honor women you would not lead them into disobedience with God. Catch the early switcheroo. No one is saying women cannot have prominent roles within the church. They are saying they cannot preach or teach with authority over men. There is a difference. There are also no real doctrinal questions beloved. Read the two sets of scripture above and see how plainly God is saying this. Eddie Hyatt does not have ONE scripture to counter these so he is forced to extrapolate doctrinal meaning from historical narratives while rewriting the key verses. The restraints have been put in place by God so I will not participate in removing them.
"Deborah: Prophetess and Judge. Before the institution of the monarchy beginning with Saul, Israel was ruled by a series of judges. Perhaps the most celebrated of these judges was a woman named Deborah, who is referred to as both a prophetess and a judge. In other words, she exercised both spiritual and civil authority. She had such respect from the people that even the military commander, Barak, refused to go out to battle unless she accompanied him. She accompanied him to battle, and God gave them a great victory over the Canaanites. Deborah had a husband named Lapiodoth, but he is mentioned only in passing. She was obviously the one called of God to be the out-front leader and deliverer of Israel at that time in history. There is not the slightest hint that her example was out of order or even exceptional. The Assemblies of God is, therefore, correct when, in its official position paper on women, it says, "The instances of women filling leadership roles in the Bible should be taken as divinely approved pattern, not as exceptions to divine decrees." -- Eddie Hyatt