(NOTE: The video referenced below has been set for private viewing only by its owner since the day it was originally posted and I wrote this article.)
This video is making the rounds through social media among brethren in churches of Christ.
After watching this very talented and passionate young woman preach before a church on Sunday morning and share her beliefs, the legitimate question some have is whether women can preach in church.
As with all things of a religious nature, all I’m interested in is what the Bible teaches. Here’s why. Jesus said the following:
The one who rejects me and does not receive my words has a judge; the word that I have spoken will judge him on the last day.
The Word of God – the Bible – is what will judge us on the last day. Our penitent obedience to the Word of God is what determines whether we’re saved eternally.
And being made perfect, (Jesus) became the source of eternal salvation to all who obey him.
Jesus promised that many religious people would receive a rude awakening on the day of judgment.
Not everyone who says to me, ‘Lord, Lord,’ will enter the kingdom of heaven, but the one who does the will of my Father who is in heaven. On that day many will say to me, ‘Lord, Lord, did we not prophesy in your name, and cast out demons in your name, and do many mighty works in your name?’ And then will I declare to them, ‘I never knew you; depart from me, you workers of lawlessness.'”
I don’t want to be a religious person who gets a rude awakening on Judgment Day. I want to go to heaven, and so I will do my best to obey the Word of God.
So what does God’s Word have to say about women preaching in church? Consider the following with an open heart and mind:
…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.
1 Corinthians 14:33b-35
Granted, the Greek translated “women” in this passage could also be translated “wife,” which seems to be more fitting since Paul speaks of these women as being married (“let them ask their husbands at home”). Contextually, a case could be made that Paul was speaking to the wives of the prophets to whom he had given earlier instruction about speaking to the church assembly while using their miraculous gifts (14:27-33a).
So what does this mean for single women, or women who aren’t married to prophets? Again, consider the following with an open heart and mind:
Let a woman learn quietly with all submissiveness. I do not permit a woman to teach or to exercise authority over a man; rather, she is to remain quiet.
1 Timothy 2:11-12
The context reveals that Paul was writing Timothy about how Christians should conduct themselves in the church.
I hope to come to you soon, but I am writing these things to you so that, if I delay, you may know how one ought to behave in the household of God, which is the church of the living God, a pillar and buttress of the truth.
1 Timothy 3:14-15
Despite what the senior minister in the above video said, there’s no indication in Scripture that Paul’s directives to either Corinth or to Timothy concerning women were designed to be temporary in nature. Read all of 1 Corinthians and 1 Timothy. There’s no clear, scriptural indication that these commands would be temporary in nature, as is the case with other sections of Scripture like the Law of Moses (cf. Heb. 8:7-13). Rather, they are woven into the fabric of the overall biblical message, the entirety of the scriptures which God breathed out in order to teach us, reprove us, correct us, and train us how to be righteous so that we are complete and equipped for every good work (2 Tim. 3:16-17). If 1 Corinthians 14:34-35 and 1 Timothy 2:11-12 no longer apply to us today, what about John 3:16? Does that no longer apply as well? If not, how can you tell?
You see, this conclusion that the passages prohibiting women from teaching or exercising authority over men in the church are irrelevant today is reached only through personal supposition, not concrete scriptural data. When we walk in the footsteps of this young lady and the senior minister and follow our suppositions and feelings rather than what God actually commanded in the Bible, we are walking on very dangerous ground.
There is a way that seems right to a man, but its end is the way of death.
The fact of the matter is this. Despite what this young lady and the senior minister theorize, what Paul wrote was actually from Jesus.
If anyone thinks that he is a prophet, or spiritual, he should acknowledge that the things I am writing to you are a command of the Lord.
1 Corinthians 14:37
It was Jesus, not Paul, who ultimately decreed that women should not preach in church to men in the church. So if you have a problem with this, take it up with Jesus. Personally, I don’t want to take it up with Jesus. You see, Jesus died an agonizing, humiliating death on the cross which he did not deserve, and he did that so that you and I could go to heaven rather than burn in hell like we deserve because of our sins. That is far more important than our tender sensibilities being miffed because his commands concerning women preaching to men are not politically or socially correct.
Do you truly love Jesus and God? That’s a claim that’s easy to make with great sincerity. This young lady made it, and I’m glad she did. However, here’s what Jesus says about loving him.
If you love me, you will keep my commandments.
“Whoever has my commandments and keeps them, he it is who loves me. And he who loves me will be loved by my Father, and I will love him and manifest myself to him.” Judas (not Iscariot) said to him, “Lord, how is it that you will manifest yourself to us, and not to the world?” Jesus answered him, “If anyone loves me, he will keep my word, and my Father will love him, and we will come to him and make our home with him. Whoever does not love me does not keep my words. And the word that you hear is not mine but the Father’s who sent me.”
As the Father has loved me, so have I loved you. Abide in my love. If you keep my commandments, you will abide in my love, just as I have kept my Father’s commandments and abide in his love.
And by this we know that we have come to know him, if we keep his commandments. Whoever says, “I know him” but does not keep his commandments is a liar, and the truth is not in him, but whoever keeps his word, in him truly the love of God is perfected. By this we may know that we are in him: whoever says he abides in him ought to walk in the same way in which he walked.
1 John 2:3-6
Plus, if one keeps reading the Bible, it becomes clear that Jesus recognized that women have much to offer for the good of his kingdom and in no way prohibited them for utilizing their gifts in numerous ways. For example, notice this passage:
Older women likewise are to be reverent in behavior, not slanderers or slaves to much wine. They are to teach what is good, and so train the young women to love their husbands and children, to be self-controlled, pure, working at home, kind, and submissive to their own husbands, that the word of God may not be reviled.
The Timothy passage specifically prohibited women from teaching men in the church. It said nothing about teaching other women or children. In this passage, Paul (and ultimately, Jesus) is both commanding and encouraging women to teach other women “what is good.” Every congregation I’ve been a part of has either directly or indirectly promoted women teaching other women and children in Bible classes, “Ladies’ Days,” etc. Ladies, do you like this young lady in the video have a gift of public speaking? By all means use it in the church! Just keep it within the parameters Jesus laid out for you in Scripture! If you truly want to follow God, that’s what you’ll do.
Also, remember that the prohibition of women teaching men was limited to within the church (cf. 1 Tim. 3:14-15). Christian sisters, do you know any man, woman, or child who is outside of Christ, a lost soul who has not yet been added to the Lord’s church through faithful, penitent baptism into the body of Christ? They’re not in the church, so what’s stopping you from teaching them? Absolutely nothing (cf. Matt. 28:19; Mark 16:15).
Remember this also, sisters. Yours is not the only gender on which God laid certain prohibitions concerning certain actions in the church. If you keep reading 1 Timothy, you’ll get to chapter 3 where God laid out certain qualifications which one had to meet in order to be an elder or deacon. As many men in the church can attest, not all of us meet all of these qualifications; therefore not all men can serve as a bishop or deacon in the church. Yet there are plenty of other ways men can serve the kingdom, just as there are plenty of other ways women can serve the kingdom also.
Yes, there is much that women can and must offer in service to the kingdom of God! Some of the hardest workers I’ve ever observed in the church are my sisters in Christ, who in many cases do far more than many men! Yet, while serving God in all these varying and needful ways and being a huge blessing to the church and the souls of many, they never stray from following what God commanded them NOT to do as well. In that way they serve God even more, and provide even more of an example of a proper, humble walk with God to the rest of us.
I recognize that what’s been pointed out from the Bible here is not popular with many. I’m probably going to get some “strongly worded” comments from this. That’s okay. It’s to be expected (2 Tim. 3:12; Matt. 5:10-12). Again, all I’m interested in is what the Scriptures say, the holy Word of God which will judge me and you into eternity. If 1 Timothy 2:11-12 and 1 Corinthians 14:34-35 weren’t in the New Testament, the covenant which the Bible says we are currently under, then you wouldn’t hear anything from me or others about what this young lady is doing. We would give her complete props and support. However, since those passages ARE in the Bible, and since we are commanded to defend the faith delivered to us once for all time (Jude 3) and speak the truth in love (Eph. 4:15; 2 Tim. 2:24-26), and since we care about both her soul, the senior minister’s soul, and the souls who are not familiar with biblical teaching and thus might be easily persuaded by feelings to follow after the error promoted in the video (Hos. 4:6; Acts 20:29-30; Rom. 16:17-18; 2 Tim. 3:1-9; 4:3-4), then we’re compelled to point out what the Bible actually says about this.
Whether you choose to heed it is up to you. It’s between you and God now (cf. Ezek. 3:17-21; Acts 20:27). He will judge us, not me or anyone else. All I’ve done is point out what the Book he will be using to judge us says about this.
29 thoughts on “Can Women Preach In Church?”
No women are not given the authority to preach and please do not encourage them to do so!!
Women are prohibited from preaching to men in the church, as the article clearly shows from the New Testament.
Thank you for standing for the truth in this issue! There are so many ways that women can and should be serving in our precious congregations that we currently fail to be involved in. If we were to be fully occupied in everything we were supposed to do we would not have time to desire to reach into the realm of authority of our brothers.
This can be a devisive issue. I could not and would not attend worship services where a woman was preaching. Some denominations ordain women ministers, but I see no authority in God’s Word for this. Historically, the church has not had or encouraged women to preach in a mixed audience. Women have an important role to play in teaching the Word. Why would a woman want to cause a division in the church? There is no precedent in the Bible. We must keep silent where the Bible is silent. To do more is perverting the Word of God. I pray that this will not happen and for all women who may want to follow this young woman’s example. God bless our Christian women.
You have to take into account the social traditions of Biblical times.
Only if the NT says to do that, SN, which in this case it doesn’t. Besides, remember that the entire Bible was written in a different culture from ours by authors who observed different traditions than we do. If we dismiss 1 Timothy 2 and 1 Corinthians 14 for those reasons, why not the rest of the Bible for the same reasons? How can we pick and choose?
I appreciate the spirit that you seemed to write this in. It is with information and not laced with tremendous amounts of emotion. I grieve when I see these kind of things rise up. When they do, emotions and feelings seem to overtake the cognitive. Feelings and emotions are Satan’s playground when it comes to being divisive and the foundation of many of his strategies for destruction. Our challenge is how to keep unity and scriptural integrity without being unduly legalistic or restrictive beyond what scripture dictates. This is very HARD and shouldn’t be met with abrasive or callousness from any “side” of the equation. I hate that things like this….and you could pick many other topics….does create division or sides. When we recognize the true enemy and look inside his playbook, he will work to influence all “sides”….and when there are now sides there is division….he is gaining some sense of victory. I believe this is an instance where Satan is gaining some victory thus far. I don’t doubt the genuine heart of this young woman. Even IF there came to some level of acceptance or agreement that she is fine doing this…..what is the cost for the friction it is going to cause…..and she may not be right. Meaning, she could be wrong….and in doing so, has caused dissension and disunity in the body. There are, as the author here points out, multiple other ways to use her heart for God for His service. We must realize we are all susceptible to Satan’s influence and must be vigilant. We must also back up one chapter in 1 Corinthians 13 and see that agape love IN PRACTICE….which is extremely hard….is our most potent spiritual weapon against Satan. We need to approach this whole thing with that kind of love, but without compromising the integrity of God’s word.
[…] Can Women Preach In Church?. […]
Good afternoon brother. Thanks for your article for us to reflect upon. I am having trouble. while you offer the passages that prohibit women’s participation, you don’t mention the passages that seem to suggest that it takes place. Acts 21:9, speaking of Philip the evangelist says, “He had four unmarried daughters, who prophesied.” 1 Corinthians 11:5 speaks of women praying and prophesying with their heads uncovered. Luke 2 mentions Anna preaching in front of the temple. I’m son suggesting a definitive answer here, but wouldn’t we at least consider that the topic is not that definitive. I only ask in the spirit of unity and love. Blessings to you.
You are correct that I didn’t mention those particular passages. However, I did mention Titus 2:3-5, where Christian women are commanded to teach other Christian women. That verse, along with passages that speak of women prophesying, when taken together with 1 Cor. 14:34-35, 1 Tim. 2:11-12, and 1 Tim. 3:14-15, show that women can teach and preach, but not to men in the church. I did bring that out in the article, but your question shows the need to elaborate on it more. For that I thank you for your question.
It doesn’t say the daughters prayed and prophesied in the assembly on the Lord’s day, does it?
So then all of the women in your church have their heads covered?
See 1 Cor. 11:16, Eric. As far as I’m aware, there is no verse around 1 Cor. 14:34-35 and 1 Tim. 2:11-12 that says concerning them, “We have no such custom, nor does the church of God,” as is the case with head coverings.
The issue is not eloquence or ability to deliver succinct influential speeches in public by a woman. The issue is not cultural mores or taboos concerning women speaking in public. There are many adept, charismatic, and successful women who are public speakers. Politicians, judges, lawyers, etc…
The crux of the matter is finding biblical authority from God for a woman to deliver a sermon, lesson, or teaching concerning biblical truth before an audience of the Lord’s body (His church). The biblical text does not authorize such an action by a woman and there are no written examples. Whether a prophetess did so in a public setting is not revealed in Scripture. One cannot deduce from silence that the example did or did not occur. One can search in vain for the precedent to do so. One can find many examples of men speaking in public (Jesus being the prime example, and His disciples) concerning biblical truth. There were indeed women counted among the disciples of Jesus, yet we don’t read of them ever delivering a sermon in a public setting? Why? The biblical record is the authority.
Why would anyone seek to deviate from known biblical examples? Because, in all honesty, they do not want to follow the examples given by God in His Word.
As you have all said, it is very important that we consider what the Bible teaches on these issues. Our discussion must come from scripture and our conclusions based on what we find there, in context…not prooftexted (which people on either side of this issue are equally capable of doing).
As I have considered and studied these issues for myself there are many questions that I have asked along the way and turned to scripture for the answers. I would like to mention two of those questions and see what you all think (again, there are more but 2 is a good start):
1 – Was Priscilla wrong to teach Apollos the Gospel?
“24 Meanwhile a Jew named Apollos, a native of Alexandria, came to Ephesus. He was a learned man, with a thorough knowledge of the Scriptures. 25 He had been instructed in the way of the Lord, and he spoke with great fervor[a] and taught about Jesus accurately, though he knew only the baptism of John. 26 He began to speak boldly in the synagogue. When Priscilla and Aquila heard him, they invited him to their home and explained to him the way of God more adequately.”
In Acts 18:26 the word “explained” is in the 3rd person plural, which means “they taught/explained”…both Priscilla (who as you will note is listed first) and Aquilla both taught Apollos the gospel. If we go by example (as we traditionally do in the churches of Christ) there you have an example of a woman teaching a man. Was she wrong to do so? I hear all the time that women are not to teach men…so Priscilla was in sin and Apollos conversion must not have been legitimate. Right?
2 – Does God use women today in teaching ministry for the good of the kingdom just as he did with Priscilla in Acts 18? Stated a different way, if women in these positions produce fruit in line with the Gospel and the kingdom, is that fruit from God or from man? This is much like the question the Jewish leaders were facing in Acts 4 when Peter and John healed the lame man…they couldn’t deny he was healed. This is also like the question Jesus asked on John’s baptism…was it from God or man? If you say God is doing something there then how can you say at the same time God condemns it? If these women are baptizing people and growing the kingdom…how can you say God is working for and against the kingdom at the same time? By their fruit you will know…
I appreciate everyone who is taking the time to actually study the New Testament on this issue with an open mind and heart…not to confirm what anyone else has to say, just to confirm what scripture teaches, in context. It is quite a wrestling match but it is one that we must work through. Either what you already believe will be confirmed…if you honestly come to that conclusion then live by those convictions. But you may also find there is more to the story…like women praying and prophesying in the assembly in Corinth (1 Cor 11) or that “all”/”everyone” of the Christians in Corinth were expected to come to worship ready to participate according to their gifts (1 Cor 14).
Just a few things to wrestle with. Thank you for reading and considering! Many prayers and blessings to you all.
Thanks for your comments and questions, mattdabbs. I appreciate them very much. One thing I would encourage you to consider about prooftexting is that, if done by rightly dividing the Word (2 Tim. 2:15), which means to take into account the entirety of the Word about any particular subject with an honest and open heart (Ps. 119:160; Luke 8:15), proof-texting is basically the only way to find divine authority for anything we do or say and thus know whether we are on the right track. After all, Jesus himself proof-texted to determine what was right and wrong (Matt. 4:4ff).
Your questions are well-founded. Let’s go to the Bible and examine each of them:
1. Priscilla was not wrong to teach Apollos the gospel for several reasons. First, if we assume Apollos was a Christian, she was not alone. Her husband Aquila joined her, and it was a joint effort by both of them. Second, notice that they took him aside privately rather than during the religious assembly in the synagogue (Acts 18:25-26), which implies that it was a private discussion rather a formal teaching situation. Thirdly, when you remember that he was only familiar with John’s baptism (v. 25) and not the baptism into Christ’s death and body which is the one baptism of the new covenant (Rom. 6:3-4; 1 Cor. 12:13; Eph. 4:4-5), it is highly probable that he wasn’t yet a Christian at the occasion recorded in Acts 18. If such were the case, as I believe it was, then she would have been within her rights to teach him the gospel for the reasons I stated in the article.
2. This question seems to revolve around the inquiry as to whether a Christian woman can teach a non-Christian man. As I stated in the article, there is no scriptural prohibition against Christian women teaching non-Christian men because the prohibition against women teaching men was part of Paul’s writing concerning conduct within the church (1 Tim. 2:11-12; 3:14-15); lost souls are not yet in the church until after they are taught the gospel and are baptized.
You also mentioned the scriptural references to women prophesying (1 Cor. 11:5). Remember that the Bible doesn’t contradict itself, and one must consider the entirety of Scripture in order to determine the whole truth of any matter, including this one (Ps. 119:160). The prohibition against women teaching has solely to do with Christian men. Titus 2:3-5 specifically commands women to teach other women, there is no prohibition against them teaching children, and we’ve already seen how there’s no scriptural prohibition against a woman teaching any non-Christian. Thus, the reference to women prophesying in no way cancels out or contradicts the prohibition against them teaching or exercising authority over men inside the church.
Let me make sure i heard you right. Did you hust say proif texting is the only way to find meaning in the text and that is because Jesus proof texted. Please tell me i am misunderstanding.
It’s not the only way to find meaning. However, I cannot see any other way to find AUTHORITY for what we do or do not do than to see whether it is commanded, implied, or exemplified in the texts of Scripture.
So what do you do with verses like Galatians 3:28? “There is neither Jew nor Gentile, neither slave nor free, nor is there MALE and FEMALE for you are all ONE in Christ Jesus.” And if women are to be totally silent in the church ad you pointed out, then why can they sing? You are correct in that the WHOLE of scripture is to be taken into consideration, but if you impose part, should you not impose all…no jewelry, must have long hair, must wear head coverings…Who decides what is cultural and what is not?
Good questions, Tammie. I’m glad you asked them.
Galatians 3:28 clearly teaches that women are not inferior to men. With that in mind, I’d encourage you to consider that just because women are commanded to not teach men in the church does not mean that they are inferior to men. Remember that men too have prohibitions placed upon them, as alluded to in the article. Not all men fit the qualifications to be elders or deacons (1 Tim. 3:1-13). Are elders or deacons superior to men in the church who aren’t in those offices? Of course not. Elders are specifically told to not “lord it” over their flock, and deacons are by definition servants of the church. All of us are told to submit to each other (Eph. 5:21). None of us are inferior to each other. However, we each have different roles to play in the body of Christ, as clearly taught in Romans 12 and 1 Corinthians 12. Just because the eye is not a hand does not mean that it is less important than the hand. Just because a woman is not to teach a man in the church does not in any way mean that she is inferior to a man and Galatians 3:28 is violated by the command of 1 Timothy 2:11-12.
Concerning jewelry, compare 1 Tim. 2:9-10 with 1 Pet. 3:3-4. Taken by itself, Peter’s command would not only prohibit jewelry and braided hair, but also all clothing, period! That obviously would violate Paul’s command of modesty, so it’s clear that Peter and Paul were not prohibiting the wearing of jewelry, braided hair, and clothing per se. Rather, as they stated rather clearly, they wanted Christian women’s focus to be on humility rather than gaudiness.
Concerning head coverings and long hair, remember 1 Cor. 11:16 which specifically states that the discussion about head coverings and long hair was not a custom held by the churches of God. However, no verses around 1 Corinthians 14 or 1 Timothy 2 say anything similar about the command for women to not teach men. This is significant when considering your question about who decides what is cultural. The answer to that question is: the Bible itself. Concerning head coverings, the Bible specifically says it’s a cultural matter. Not so with the topic under discussion.
Good questions. Thank you for reading and asking them.
Using the exact same hermeneutic you’re using, slavery is permitted. I assume you don’t believe that. So there must be something wrong with the hermeneutic, and this conclusion cannot therefore be trusted.
Also, you have to wrestle with the issue that your analysis raises, which is a picture of a God who gives gifts (I don’t see you denying that women might have gifts of preaching) that God doesn’t want to be used. Now, I personally find that hard to believe.
Hi James. Thank you for reading and for asking these very good and relevant questions.
The NT does not condone slavery by virtue of the Golden Rule alone (Matt. 7:12). What the NT does repeatedly do is give Christians guidance through commands and principles on how to live in a sin-filled world. For example, none of us read Matthew 5:39-40 and conclude that Jesus is condoning slapping someone or stealing their clothes; rather, he is telling us how to react when such sins are done to us. In like manner, passages like Colossians 3:22 do not condone slavery, but rather tell Christians who are slaves how to live while enduring that sin.
Concerning the picture of a God who gives women gifts that he doesn’t want them to use, I’d like for you to consider some things. First, God gave me the gift to cook. I make a mean steak and some pretty good tortellini dishes too. Should I use that gift to make some steak and tortellini for the Lord’s Supper? Even though the Bible only commands bread and fruit of the vine? You see, using the gifts God gave us for his SERVICE means that we actually SERVE him, i.e, do what he told us to do, i.e., use our gifts within the parameters he laid out for us in Scripture (Col. 3:17; Heb. 5:9).
Secondly, as the article clearly states, just because God told Christian women to not teach Christian men does not mean that he told them to not teach anyone at all. Re-read the article to see how the Bible clearly not only allows and condones but even commands women to use their gift of teaching to teach many other people other than Christian men in the church.
Thanks for the comment and for reading.
Preaching is clearly addressed.
I appreciate that teaching can occur if man isn’t a believer and if he chooses to attend a ladies class such as Beth Moore conducts. Both she and Joyce Meyer state they are teachers not preachers and neither preach in or have churches they are over.
My questions are: can women read scripture in mixed assembly?
Can women say prayer in mixed assembly?
Can women serve communion in mixed assembly?
Good questions, Vicki. Notice that the command in 1 Timothy 2:11-12 prohibits not only teaching but also “exercising authority” over men. When a woman say aloud a prayer in mixed assembly, it would be said that she is LEADING the prayer, and thus exercising authority over the men present. Same with reading scripture and serving communion, as both at the very least give the appearance and implication of having authority. Good question.
As social media, digital media, et al continue to grow at rapid a rapid pace, minsters all over the world have utilized them for for ministry. Part of this ministry includes authoritative speaking/preaching/teaching in addition to reflection, encouragement, public journal, etc.
Is a woman Biblically permitted to author blogs, videos, books, journals, etc. that diverse genders or believers will access? The black and white “permission” becomes hard to interpret in 2014 since a female cannot control who will access something she has to offer in ministry if it is logged/recorded.
PS- I presume that this article will be read by many men and women of God. I covet your prayers for a dear friend’s granddaughter. Raegan Pruitt, six-year old granddaughter of Walter and Belvia Pruit, was diagnosed with aggressive AML Leukemia yesterday. Please keep this little girl in your prayers–she is in Vanderbilt facing significant treatments in the very near future. May God heal her body as he increases our faith!
Good question! Consider this. When reading Luke 1:46-55, could it be said that the written words of Mary could teach any Christian male reader? Certainly, yet God inspired Luke to record it for both male and female readership anyway. That shows a difference between the written teachings of a female Christian which a male Christian would encounter in books or online and a Christian woman formally teaching a Christian man in a worship setting as is talked about in 1 Corinthians 14 and 1 Timothy 2.
Thanks for letting us know about your prayer request. Our prayers are with little Raegan.
Thank you for your article that is written in a way that invites discussion and is obviously well thought out.
I was just discussing this with some of my brothers recently and was interested to hear what others might think. Let me say I actually tend to agree with your article somewhat, but I do have a tendency to question things. Not in a selfish way, to get what I want, or to further a specific agenda, but in a way to make sure I am doing everything I can to further the cause of Christ in an acceptable manner.
When it comes to 1 Corinthians 14 I have always found it odd that we eagerly accept verses 34-38 as the way things are to be done today in the church, BUT we clearly throw out the rest of the chapter without acknowledgement that there are clear instructions on how to do things that we completely EXCLUDE in the modern church (at least in the coC.) Does verse 38 not apply to ALL the things he was just mentioning? Or does it somehow suggest in some way that it only applies to certain things mentioned?
I sometimes wrestle with the idea that perhaps this is more an issue of order in the gathering. Women probably did not sit with men in the meetings in these days, and the women were interrupting or perhaps even being more divisive with questions and ‘uneducated’ contribution. He is saying ask the questions at home, and keep the distraction to a minimum. Possibly?
The only reason I even consider this is because in Chapter 11 he clearly describes a scenario where women were praying and prophecing (sp?)
And even as he starts the section in Chapter 14 he says that when you come together ‘each of you’ has something to offer to the group. Not each man, but each of YOU. Meaning women, too, I would suspect.
I can’t begin to look into the mind of God, but I sometimes wonder if he is shaking his head at us thinking ‘I thought these guys were smarter than this…did I have to spell every single thing out for them?’ At least when it comes to many of our ‘divisive’ issues. We pick and pick and pick and worry about if we are doing this or that, while the majority of Christians today choose to completely ignore the direct teachings of Christ in Matthew 28:19-20; Mark 16:15-18. He said to GO, so let’s get GOING!
I am thankful for grace!
Hi JJ. Thanks for reading and commenting.
Concerning your thoughts about women prophesying in 1 Cor. 11, see what I’ve replied to others who made similar comments and inquiries. It might help clear up the matter some.
Concerning the majority of 1 Cor. 14, remember that the majority of that chapter deals with divine directives only how to properly use the miraculous spiritual gifts of speaking in tongues in a worship assembly. The previous chapter stated that speaking in tongues would cease “when that which is perfect (literally, complete) has come” (1 Cor. 13:8-10), a reference to the completion of God’s Word (Rom. 12:2; James 1:25). God’s Word has been complete for centuries; thus, miraculous spiritual gifts have ceased, which is why less attention is given to the parts of the chapter which talk of spiritual gifts.
Thanks for reading!
It’s not a matter of capability, but of eligibility. Paul, in I Tim. 2:12 went on to say why women were not to teach or have authority over men. It wasn’t culture, it wasn’t something temporary, it’s wasn’t trends of the time, it was because…1. Adam was formed first and 2. It was Eve that was deceived. Paul’s culture was not that of Adam and Eve’s time yet he pointed back to Adam and Eve as to the very reasons for him to speak these words to 1st century Christians as authorized by Christ and empowered by the Holy Spirit. Object then needs to be taken up with the words of God, not the “heritage” of the ‘tribe of Christ.”
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