To start off our discussion on the possible differences between men and women, we will start with an old favorite - Should Women Be Allowed to Preach in the Church?
This oft-debated topic has its share of proponents and detractors, both groups quoting their own favorite scriptures. So who's right? We may never really know, however, I'm going to add my own voice to the fray in trying to resolve this matter.
Do I think women should be allowed to preach in the church? In a word - yes. Why, you ask? Here are five reasons why:
1. (And this is my favorite) God never said that women shouldn't.
Preach, that is. There are no scriptures directly prohibiting a woman from preaching, prophesying or ministering in any fashion in the church.
2. The Bible tells us that tells us that God is no respecter of persons and all are considered the same in Christ.
Peter, in Acts 10:34 (see below) tells us that God is no respecter of persons. Peter learned this valuable lesson prior to being sent to lodge with a Gentile (which was considered abhorrent to many Jews at the time). If God could accept Gentiles, then why not women?
Paul, in Galatians 3:28-29, tells us that God doesn't consider the religion (Jew, nor Greek), status (bond nor free) or gender (male nor female) of His children - all are one in Christ.
Act 10:34 Then Peter opened his mouth, and said, Of a truth I perceive that God is no respecter of persons:
Gal 3:28 There is neither Jew nor Greek, there is neither bond nor free, there is neither male nor female: for ye are all one in Christ Jesus.
Gal 3:29 And if ye be Christ's, then are ye Abraham's seed, and heirs according to the promise.
3. Israelite women were placed in leadership roles and were called upon to prophesy.
Deborah was appointed as one of the judges of Israel (Judges 4:4-5). In this position, she judged all matters of contention between the Israelites. And, not only was she a judge, she was a prophetess as well! In Joel 2:28, God speaks through Joel to his people and tells them, among other things, that their daughters would prophesy.
Jdg 4:4 And Deborah, a prophetess, the wife of Lapidoth, she judged Israel at that time.
Jdg 4:5 And she dwelt under the palm tree of Deborah between Ramah and Bethel in mount Ephraim: and the children of Israel came up to her for judgment.
Joe 2:28 And it shall come to pass afterward, that I will pour out my spirit upon all flesh; and your sons and your daughters shall prophesy, your old men shall dream dreams, your young men shall see visions:
4. Women were with the Apostles when they received the Holy Spirit in the Upper Room.
After Jesus was resurrected and had ascended to heaven, the Apostles, along with a number of women, gathered in the upper room. During their prayer (and when they were on one accord), the Holy Spirit descended upon all of them and and all of them spoke in other tongues. God did not differentiate between the men and the women who were present in the Upper Room.
Act 1:13 And when they were come in, they went up into an upper room, where abode both Peter, and James, and John, and Andrew, Philip, and Thomas, Bartholomew, and Matthew, James the son of Alphaeus, and Simon Zelotes, and Judas the brother of James.
Act 1:14 These all continued with one accord in prayer and supplication, with the women, and Mary the mother of Jesus, and with his brethren.
Act 2:1 And when the day of Pentecost was fully come, they were all with one accord in one place.
Act 2:2 And suddenly there came a sound from heaven as of a rushing mighty wind, and it filled all the house where they were sitting.
Act 2:3 And there appeared unto them cloven tongues like as of fire, and it sat upon each of them.
Act 2:4 And they were all filled with the Holy Ghost, and began to speak with other tongues, as the Spirit gave them utterance.
5. Women were only specifically directed to remain quiet in one instance.
For those who often quote 1 Corinthians, where Paul admonishes the women to keep silent in the churches and to ask their husbands questions in the privacy of their home - this scripture refers to one particular situation, one particular church and one particular instance. Reportedly, the women in the Corinthian church were being disruptive, and speaking out of turn. So, this admonishment was more about order than a general rule to be applied across all spectrums. God may not be a respecter of persons, but He does expect His people to be orderly!
1Co 14:34 Let your women keep silence in the churches: for it is not permitted unto them to speak; but they are commanded to be under obedience, as also saith the law.
1Co 14:35 And if they will learn any thing, let them ask their husbands at home: for it is a shame for women to speak in the church.
I would love to hear your opininon - for and against. So let me know what you think!
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