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The Idea of Women Pastors is Unbiblical
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Post Re: Charisma Article (L) Da Sheik
famousflavius wrote:
This Charisma article really surprised me.

https://www.charismanews.com/opinion/75421-what-does-the-bible-actually-say-about-women-as-pastors


I don't read Charisma, but I think they got this one right. My views closely align with the author here.
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3/5/19 12:53 pm


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Post Re: Charisma Article (L) diakoneo
Da Sheik wrote:
famousflavius wrote:
This Charisma article really surprised me.

https://www.charismanews.com/opinion/75421-what-does-the-bible-actually-say-about-women-as-pastors


I don't read Charisma, but I think they got this one right. My views closely align with the author here.


Very good article!

The way God made us did not change at Pentecost. God did not suddenly decide to switch roles of male and female. He is still a God of order and His order is best. He will, however, allow us to have women pastors, bishops, etc. doesn't mean it is best. He is gracious and kind and will even bless these missteps...still doesn't mean it is best because He even makes it rain on the unjust. We are blessed despite our stumbling around in legalism or hypergrace, so...
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3/6/19 7:43 pm


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Post THis article that just appeared in Charisma brotherjames
confirms my own post and scholarship in a more readable way. From Eddie Hyatt:
What does the Bible Actually say about Women in Leadership?

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.

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."

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Miriam: God-Sent Leader to Israel

In Micah 6:4b, God speaks through the prophet and says, "I sent before you Moses, Aaron, and Miriam." Of the three leaders God sent to bring Israel out of Egypt, one of them was a woman. Note that in this passage God says, "I sent." The word "apostle" literally means "sent one," which means that Miriam, along with Moses and Aaron, were the "apostles" sent by God to bring deliverance to Israel.

This is confirmed by the Septuagint, which uses the word ekapisteila, the verb form of apostolos with the prefix ek, meaning "out." It literally means "sent out." Miriam was "sent out" by God along with Moses and Aaron. Could it be that that God is still calling and "sending out" women today? Will the church be open to receiving these women?

Mary Magdalene: Apostle to the Apostles

Jesus appeared first to Mary Magdalene after His resurrection. The emphasis that the Gospel writers give to this fact make it clear that this was no chance or accidental appearance, but that Jesus appeared first to Mary in order to make a statement.

We must remember that in the first century, neither Roman nor Jewish courts of law would allow the testimony of a woman as evidence. Jesus confronts this cultural bias head-on by appearing first to Mary and sending her to bear testimony to the most significant event of human history. He could have just as easily appeared first to the men, but he required that they hear the news of His resurrection for the first time from the lips of a woman.

His words to Mary, Go and tell . . . identify her as a "sent one" who receives the first apostolic commission from the risen Lord to go and proclaim the Good News of His resurrection. This is why, throughout history, Mary has often been referred to as "the apostle to the apostles."

My father was converted as a result of a young "Mary" (her actual name) responding to the voice of the Lord to "go and tell," who began conducting revival meetings in southeastern Oklahoma and northeastern Texas. I have no doubt that there are a host of Marys in the world today who are hearing the voice the Lord instructing them to "go and tell."

Phoebe: Minister and Church Leader

In Romans 16:1b, Paul refers to Phoebe as "a servant of the church in Cenchrea." The word "servant" in this passage is translated from the Greek word diakonos, which literally means "servant," but was used as a general designation for Christian leaders.

For example, in 1 Corinthians 3:5a, where Paul says, "Who then is Paul, and who is Apollos, but ministers through whom you believed?" "ministers" is a translation of diakonos. Where diakonos was used of men, the translators chose to translate it as "ministers," but where it was used of a woman, they chose to translate it as "servant." Phoebe was, therefore, a "minister" and leader in the church in Cenchrea.

Paul also said that Phoebe had been a "helper of many and of myself as well" (Rom. 16:1b).It is unfortunate that some translators have translated the Greek word prostatis as "helper," for it appears to be another case of translator bias. The word is feminine and literally means "to stand before."

Thayer's Greek-English Lexicon defines a prostatis as "a woman set over others; a female guardian, protectress, patroness, caring for the affairs of others and aiding them with her resources." In other words, a prostatis had all the characteristics that we would expect in a modern-day pastor.

This word prostatis identifies Phoebe as a leader from the church in Cenchrea who has Paul's respect. Not only does her refer to her as a diakonos and a prostatis, but he instructs the church in Rome to receive her with respect and to assist her in whatever business she has with them (Hyatt, Paul, Women and Church, 2Cool.

Does the church today show respect to the Phoebes who are in her midst?

Priscilla: Pastor and Co-Worker with Paul

When Paul mentions Priscilla and Aquilla, he always mentions them together, and they were obviously a husband-wife team. Paul had lived, worked and ministered with them while in Corinth and when he departed, they departed with him (Acts 18:1-3, 1Cool. He always uses plural pronouns—"they" and "them"—when referring to them.

In Romans 16:3-5, Paul sends greetings to Priscilla and Aquilla "and the church that is in their house" (Rom. 16:5). Because Paul here goes against the normal cultural convention of always mentioning the man first, and mentions Priscilla first, many believe that Priscilla was the out-front one in the relationship—like Deborah—and the host and pastor of the church that met in their home. Paul obviously thinks very highly of them both saying that they had "risked their own necks for my life" (Rom. 16:4a).

Junia: An Apostle

In Romans 16:7, Paul greets Andronicus and Junia, who, he says, "are noteworthy among the apostles." Junia is a feminine name and was recognized as a female apostle for the first several centuries of the church's existence. The famous church father of the fourth century, John Chrysostom, declared of Junia, "O how great is the devotion of this woman that she should even be counted worthy of the appellation of apostle."

Some have tried to argue that the name should be "Junias," which is a male name. The problem with this claim is that, first of all, every ancient Greek manuscript, without exception, has the feminine form of "Junia." Secondly, the name Junias is unknown in the ancient world, while Junia is a common name. Junias, therefore, is a hypothetical name created by those who cannot accept that Paul would recognize a female apostle (Hyatt, Paul, Women and Church, 25).

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Commenting on why some translations have used "Junias," Dr. N. Clayton Croy, professor of New Testament at Trinity Lutheran Seminary in Columbus, Ohio, says, "It is hard to see any reason other than the translators' bias against the possibility that a woman could be an apostle." Faced with such overwhelming evidence, the NIV translators changed the word from "Junias" (1984 edition) to "Junia" in the 2011 edition.

Lydia and the Women Who Labored with Paul in Philippi

Paul began the church in Philippi with a group of praying women. His base of operations and the church's meeting place was in the home of one of these women whose name was Lydia (Acts 16:13-15, 40). Jewish law required a quorum of 10 Jewish men, who were heads of households, for establishing a synagogue in any community. Paul, however, had no problem beginning a Christian congregation with a group of praying women. As far as we know, this was the first church in Europe.

These women obviously functioned in leadership alongside Paul. This is borne out by the fact that in 4:3b of his letter to the Philippian church, he exhorted, "help those women who labored with me in the gospel." Gerald F. Hawthorne, in the Word Biblical Commentary, says that Paul, in this passage, uses a metaphor which means "to fight together side by side with," clearly indicating that Paul sees these women, not as peons under him, but as highly esteemed members of his team who have labored at his side in the cause of Christ.

This reminds me of the words of the noted, British New Testament scholar, F.F, Bruce, who said;

He [Paul] delighted in the company of his fellows, both men and women. The most incredible feature in the Paul of popular mythology is his alleged misogyny. He treated women as persons. The mainstream churches of Christendom, as they inch along towards a worthier recognition of the ministry of women, have some way to go yet before they come abreast of Paul (Hyatt, Paul, Women and Church, 31).

Paul's Spiritual Mother

Paul never mentions a spiritual father, but he does mention a spiritual mother. In Romans 16:13 he sends greetings to Rufus, "and his mother and mine." This is obviously not Paul's biological mother, but a woman who has been a spiritual mother to him. We know little about this woman, but at some point in Paul's spiritual journey, she had offered encouragement and counsel to Paul and been like a mother to him.

The identity of this woman can perhaps be identified by comparing Paul's words in this passage to Mark's Gospel, which also mentions an individual named Rufus. Since Paul's letter and Mark's Gospel were both written to the same Christian community in Rome, and within a few years of each other, it is likely that the Rufus mentioned by Paul and the Rufus mentioned by Mark are the same person.

In his Gospel, which was originally written to the church in Rome, Mark tells of Simon of Cyrene being compelled to carry the cross of Jesus. He notes that Simon is the father of Alexander and Rufus and obviously expects his audience to make the connection when they hear the names of the two sons. The Rufus of Paul, therefore, is most likely the Rufus of Mark, the son of Simon of Cyrene who carried the cross of Jesus.

So, although Paul never mentions a spiritual father in his writings, he does make a point to send greetings to his spiritual mother. His spiritual mother was likely an African woman from Cyrene (Cyrene is located on the north coast of Africa), the mother of Rufus and the wife of Simon of Cyrene who carried the cross of Jesus.

What About 1 Timothy 2:12?

Some will surely quote I Timothy 2:12 as a counter to all the above biblical passages. It reads, "I do not permit a woman to teach or to usurp authority over a man, but to be silent." First of all, the above passages about women must be given equal consideration with this passage. Many have made the error of making 1 Timothy 2:12 a canon within the canon when it comes to women and forcing every other passage to fit their interpretation of this one passage. That is not good hermeneutics.

Secondly, it is obvious from 1 Timothy 1:3 that Paul wrote this letter to Timothy to address the issue of false doctrine that was being spread in the church in Ephesus. His concern is not women in leadership per se, but the propagation of false doctrine by both men and women. First Timothy was not written as a manual of church order to be observed by all churches at all times, but to address the unique situation that existed in Ephesus at the time.

This is borne out by the fact that "authority" in 2:12 is a translation of the Greek word authentein, a word that is found only here in the entire New Testament. If Paul was addressing the normal exercise of authority in the church, we would expect him to use exousia, which he and other New Testament writers use over 100 times. That Paul uses this strange Greek word that neither he nor any other New Testament writer ever used is a clear sign that he is addressing a unique and local situation in Ephesus and is not giving instructions for all churches everywhere.

Those who would restrict the role of women in the church cannot claim Paul as an ally or an authority for their stance.

An Amazing Word From God

Much of the church has refused to recognize the gifts of its female members and has, thereby, violated Paul's command in 1 Thessalonians 5:19, "Do not quench the Spirit." As a result of this disobedience, many gifts have lain dormant while millions have perished without Christ, and the church has languished in defeat.

In 2010, I awakened very early one morning and, not wanting to awaken Sue, went into an adjoining room where I sat on a sofa enjoying the solitude and quietly communing with the Lord. At some point, I sensed my heart become very still and quiet, and then I heard, "I want you to be more identified with Sue and what she is doing," a reference to her work for the full acceptance of the gifts and callings of women in the church.

There was a moment of quietness and I then heard the words, "This message has the power to begin a mass movement from Islam to Christianity, beginning with the women."

This article is derived in part from Dr. Eddie Hyatt's book, Paul, Women and Church, available from Amazon in both paperback and Kindle. He and his wife, Dr. Susan Hyatt, have founded the International Christian Women's Hall of Fame in Grapevine, Texas, with the goal of "celebrating God's women of yesterday and creating world changer's today." The website is gwtwchristianwomenshalloffame.com. Visit Dr. Eddie Hyatt's website at eddiehyatt.com.

This article originally appeared at eddiehyatt.com.
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3/13/19 2:44 pm


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Post Eddie Robbins
Again, if you are going to be scriptural, let the women remain silent in the church. Otherwise, pick and choose your verses to suit your own beliefs. Isn’t that what we do? Acts-pert Poster
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3/13/19 2:54 pm


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Post Da Sheik
Eddie Robbins wrote:
Again, if you are going to be scriptural, let the women remain silent in the church. Otherwise, pick and choose your verses to suit your own beliefs. Isn’t that what we do?


Just curious Eddie, do you believe there are objective criteria for the appointment of bishops and deacons? If so, what are the qualifications ?

BroJames: the article you cut & pasted is so rife with error I don’t know where to begin. He lost me at Mary Magdalene as an apostle. And seriously - using Miriam as a proof text ? I wonder if he ever read Numbers 12 ?? Maybe a quick glance is in order.
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3/13/19 8:44 pm


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Post Da sheik brotherjames
I would concur with you in Mary Magdalene and Miriam while prophetic certainly had issues. However as with so many things, there is still truth related in the article and points made I wrote previously regarding women as deacons & Apostles. There is scriptural basis for them if you read the text unbiased. As to Eddies comment I'm sure he was tongue in cheek and I stand by my previous comments regarding the issue being directed to a particular church at a particular time and not intended to be doctrine. You must take 1 cor 11 together with 1 cor 14. If women cant pray or prophesy with their heads uncovered it must also follow that they COULD pray and prophesy with their heads covered. Reconcile that with women must be silent. He's dealing with a specific situation of uneducated women separated from their husbands by gender in a church because of culture and that causing confusion in the church. Acts-celerater
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3/14/19 8:32 am


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Post Re: Da sheik Nature Boy Florida
brotherjames wrote:
. As to Eddies comment I'm sure he was tongue in cheek


I don't think Eddie is tongue in cheek.

His point is - if we don't interpret in light of the culture of the times - and everything is completely literal - where would that leave us?
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Post Bro. James...NO. Aaron Scott
With respect, Bro. James, allow me to challenge what was written....



brotherjames wrote:
confirms my own post and scholarship in a more readable way. From Eddie Hyatt:
What does the Bible Actually say about Women in Leadership?

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.

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.

This is an egregious and, frankly, false conclusion. There is EVERY REASON to believe that he example was an exception! This is evidenced by there being ZERO queens of Israel (in the sense of ruling). This being evidenced by there being ONE judge that was a female (and I would presume that even then women were at least half the population). This being evidenced by there being ZERO of the twelve disciples that were women. This being evidenced by there being ZERO female apostles (and even if we allow that Junia WAS an apostle--and not just esteemed by them--we still wind up with what in every other situation we would call an exception.

Here's the thing: God ABSOLUTELY uses women to fulfill His divine purposes. There is no question at all of that. Women were and are engaged in ministry as fully as any man. But in the LEADERSHIP of the Church, in the LEADERSHIP of the home, for whatever reason, God decided to be politically incorrect and, in virtually every example we know of, men are placed in leadership.

Is that a cultural thing that caused this male headship? Maybe to some extent. After all, women are just as bright, sharp, organized, effective, ambitious as men. And if we take out Paul's "I suffer not a woman...," EVEN THEN we have reasons for accepting that God placed man as the head of the woman, and Jesus as head of the man. It seemed evident (although, to be fair, it should not be taken as proof of that women are to be excluded from leadership) that women were not even considered for nomination as elders or bishops.

Even if the Bible does not make the absolute statement of "no women in leadership," the examples are overwhelming, and the exclusions (Deborah, etc.) only bolster the truth that men were virtually always the ones chosen by God for leadership.









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."

This is an almost laughable conclusion. Seriously--and I don't even fight against women in leadership any longer. But THIS is the reason that so many DO! Why? They KNOW that such a conclusion is absolutely WRONG (I would say "false," but I don't believe that most who hold this position are doing it from wrong intentions)! narrative. We find a VERY SMALL number f women in leadership positions throughout the ENTIRE Bible...and we call that a "pattern"? There's no pattern. NONE. And anyone who knows the Bible knows that.

Just because there is no pattern doesn't mean women can't be in leadership, but let's have none of this nonsense that there is some pattern in scripture of women in leadership (unless we mean "pattern" in the same way that pi has a pattern).







Miriam: God-Sent Leader to Israel

In Micah 6:4b, God speaks through the prophet and says, "I sent before you Moses, Aaron, and Miriam." Of the three leaders God sent to bring Israel out of Egypt, one of them was a woman. Note that in this passage God says, "I sent." The word "apostle" literally means "sent one," which means that Miriam, along with Moses and Aaron, were the "apostles" sent by God to bring deliverance to Israel.

I believe that women are equal in ministry. It is whether they are equal in the leadership (even though they may be much better leaders than men, for that matter!). And if Miriam was a leader, she was along the lines of a song leader. Outside of protecting baby Moses (which was itself noble and wonderful), and leading a song of praise on the other side of the Red Sea, we find virtually (or literally) nothing of Miriam's leadership. It's simply not there. Which doesn't mean that God didn't send her as a minister.





This is confirmed by the Septuagint, which uses the word ekapisteila, the verb form of apostolos with the prefix ek, meaning "out." It literally means "sent out." Miriam was "sent out" by God along with Moses and Aaron. Could it be that that God is still calling and "sending out" women today? Will the church be open to receiving these women?

Is the usage of this word even meaningful in the context of leadership? Does this prove anything? No. It simply means "sent out."

If it did prove anything, I think our writer would be more forward than asking questions about that matter, and would instead insist upon it.

The key thing here is that if someone is literally called an apostle, that is one thing. But if it is a general term (as this appears to be) that connotes little beyond being called of God, then it has little to do with leadership of the nation/church.





Mary Magdalene: Apostle to the Apostles

Jesus appeared first to Mary Magdalene after His resurrection. The emphasis that the Gospel writers give to this fact make it clear that this was no chance or accidental appearance, but that Jesus appeared first to Mary in order to make a statement.

This is an interpretation of an event, not a scriptural statement at all. Do we KNOW that Jesus was making a statement? We do NOT. Was Jesus making a statement by having Andrew follow Him before Peter? Did that ultimately place him at the head of the apostles? Not at all. Indeed, however, Mary was blessed to be the first to witness the resurrected Jesus, but that does not indicate that she was in leadership. In fact, after that, we pretty much never hear of her again...until "The Da Vinci Code." She was not at all indicated to be part of the Jerusalem Council, etc. This does not mean that she was not utterly beloved of Jesus and the apostles...it does not mean that she wasn't a wonderful minister of the gospel...it doesn't mean she wasn't in leadership...but what it does mean is that this verse/event does not at all give us room to consider her a leader in the church. NONE. We might as well argue that the shepherds, being the first to see the newborn Jesus, were leaders in the church.






We must remember that in the first century, neither Roman nor Jewish courts of law would allow the testimony of a woman as evidence. Jesus confronts this cultural bias head-on by appearing first to Mary and sending her to bear testimony to the most significant event of human history. He could have just as easily appeared first to the men, but he required that they hear the news of His resurrection for the first time from the lips of a woman.

His words to Mary, Go and tell . . . identify her as a "sent one" who receives the first apostolic commission from the risen Lord to go and proclaim the Good News of His resurrection. This is why, throughout history, Mary has often been referred to as "the apostle to the apostles."

If you wish to use "go and tell" as definitive, then the Great Commission of "Go ye therefore..." either is applicable ONLY to the twelve disciples...OR, if it is applicable to ALL Christians, then I guess we are all apostles, for we, too, have been sent, right?

Again we find that the claim for apostleship or leadership is ill-founded.

Can a woman be an apostle? I wouldn't doubt it. But it is NOT AT ALL definitive in the scriptures....

BUT... BUT...

To be fair, it is also not definitive that a woman CANNOT be an apostle. Yes, the examples, the weight, the preponderance of the evidence is DECIDELY for male leadership. Of that there can be no mistake. But that in itself is not a definitive statement that says that ONLY men can be leaders of the nation/church.






My father was converted as a result of a young "Mary" (her actual name) responding to the voice of the Lord to "go and tell," who began conducting revival meetings in southeastern Oklahoma and northeastern Texas. I have no doubt that there are a host of Marys in the world today who are hearing the voice the Lord instructing them to "go and tell."

Phoebe: Minister and Church Leader

In Romans 16:1b, Paul refers to Phoebe as "a servant of the church in Cenchrea." The word "servant" in this passage is translated from the Greek word diakonos, which literally means "servant," but was used as a general designation for Christian leaders.

For example, in 1 Corinthians 3:5a, where Paul says, "Who then is Paul, and who is Apollos, but ministers through whom you believed?" "ministers" is a translation of diakonos. Where diakonos was used of men, the translators chose to translate it as "ministers," but where it was used of a woman, they chose to translate it as "servant." Phoebe was, therefore, a "minister" and leader in the church in Cenchrea.


Again, no one (that I know of) is denying that women are equal in MINISTRY. The question is does the Bible indicate that they are to be equal in LEADERSHIP OF THE CHURCH? The answer is NO. At the same time, while the evidence is HEAVILY against women in leadership, there is still no definitive statement that women CANNOT be in leadership.



Paul also said that Phoebe had been a "helper of many and of myself as well" (Rom. 16:1b).It is unfortunate that some translators have translated the Greek word prostatis as "helper," for it appears to be another case of translator bias. The word is feminine and literally means "to stand before."

Thayer's Greek-English Lexicon defines a prostatis as "a woman set over others; a female guardian, protectress, patroness, caring for the affairs of others and aiding them with her resources." In other words, a prostatis had all the characteristics that we would expect in a modern-day pastor.

This word prostatis identifies Phoebe as a leader from the church in Cenchrea who has Paul's respect. Not only does her refer to her as a diakonos and a prostatis, but he instructs the church in Rome to receive her with respect and to assist her in whatever business she has with them (Hyatt, Paul, Women and Church, 2Cool.

Does the church today show respect to the Phoebes who are in her midst?

Priscilla: Pastor and Co-Worker with Paul

When Paul mentions Priscilla and Aquilla, he always mentions them together, and they were obviously a husband-wife team. Paul had lived, worked and ministered with them while in Corinth and when he departed, they departed with him (Acts 18:1-3, 1Cool. He always uses plural pronouns—"they" and "them"—when referring to them.

In Romans 16:3-5, Paul sends greetings to Priscilla and Aquilla "and the church that is in their house" (Rom. 16:5). Because Paul here goes against the normal cultural convention of always mentioning the man first, and mentions Priscilla first, many believe that Priscilla was the out-front one in the relationship—like Deborah—and the host and pastor of the church that met in their home. Paul obviously thinks very highly of them both saying that they had "risked their own necks for my life" (Rom. 16:4a).

Junia: An Apostle

In Romans 16:7, Paul greets Andronicus and Junia, who, he says, "are noteworthy among the apostles." Junia is a feminine name and was recognized as a female apostle for the first several centuries of the church's existence. The famous church father of the fourth century, John Chrysostom, declared of Junia, "O how great is the devotion of this woman that she should even be counted worthy of the appellation of apostle."

Some have tried to argue that the name should be "Junias," which is a male name. The problem with this claim is that, first of all, every ancient Greek manuscript, without exception, has the feminine form of "Junia." Secondly, the name Junias is unknown in the ancient world, while Junia is a common name. Junias, therefore, is a hypothetical name created by those who cannot accept that Paul would recognize a female apostle (Hyatt, Paul, Women and Church, 25).

Related Articles
What Does the Bible Actually Say About Women as Pastors?
Does the Bible Say Women Were Apostles?
Commenting on why some translations have used "Junias," Dr. N. Clayton Croy, professor of New Testament at Trinity Lutheran Seminary in Columbus, Ohio, says, "It is hard to see any reason other than the translators' bias against the possibility that a woman could be an apostle." Faced with such overwhelming evidence, the NIV translators changed the word from "Junias" (1984 edition) to "Junia" in the 2011 edition.

Lydia and the Women Who Labored with Paul in Philippi

Paul began the church in Philippi with a group of praying women. His base of operations and the church's meeting place was in the home of one of these women whose name was Lydia (Acts 16:13-15, 40). Jewish law required a quorum of 10 Jewish men, who were heads of households, for establishing a synagogue in any community. Paul, however, had no problem beginning a Christian congregation with a group of praying women. As far as we know, this was the first church in Europe.

These women obviously functioned in leadership alongside Paul. This is borne out by the fact that in 4:3b of his letter to the Philippian church, he exhorted, "help those women who labored with me in the gospel." Gerald F. Hawthorne, in the Word Biblical Commentary, says that Paul, in this passage, uses a metaphor which means "to fight together side by side with," clearly indicating that Paul sees these women, not as peons under him, but as highly esteemed members of his team who have labored at his side in the cause of Christ.

This reminds me of the words of the noted, British New Testament scholar, F.F, Bruce, who said;

He [Paul] delighted in the company of his fellows, both men and women. The most incredible feature in the Paul of popular mythology is his alleged misogyny. He treated women as persons. The mainstream churches of Christendom, as they inch along towards a worthier recognition of the ministry of women, have some way to go yet before they come abreast of Paul (Hyatt, Paul, Women and Church, 31).

Paul's Spiritual Mother

Paul never mentions a spiritual father, but he does mention a spiritual mother. In Romans 16:13 he sends greetings to Rufus, "and his mother and mine." This is obviously not Paul's biological mother, but a woman who has been a spiritual mother to him. We know little about this woman, but at some point in Paul's spiritual journey, she had offered encouragement and counsel to Paul and been like a mother to him.

The identity of this woman can perhaps be identified by comparing Paul's words in this passage to Mark's Gospel, which also mentions an individual named Rufus. Since Paul's letter and Mark's Gospel were both written to the same Christian community in Rome, and within a few years of each other, it is likely that the Rufus mentioned by Paul and the Rufus mentioned by Mark are the same person.

In his Gospel, which was originally written to the church in Rome, Mark tells of Simon of Cyrene being compelled to carry the cross of Jesus. He notes that Simon is the father of Alexander and Rufus and obviously expects his audience to make the connection when they hear the names of the two sons. The Rufus of Paul, therefore, is most likely the Rufus of Mark, the son of Simon of Cyrene who carried the cross of Jesus.

So, although Paul never mentions a spiritual father in his writings, he does make a point to send greetings to his spiritual mother. His spiritual mother was likely an African woman from Cyrene (Cyrene is located on the north coast of Africa), the mother of Rufus and the wife of Simon of Cyrene who carried the cross of Jesus.

What About 1 Timothy 2:12?

Some will surely quote I Timothy 2:12 as a counter to all the above biblical passages. It reads, "I do not permit a woman to teach or to usurp authority over a man, but to be silent." First of all, the above passages about women must be given equal consideration with this passage. Many have made the error of making 1 Timothy 2:12 a canon within the canon when it comes to women and forcing every other passage to fit their interpretation of this one passage. That is not good hermeneutics.

Secondly, it is obvious from 1 Timothy 1:3 that Paul wrote this letter to Timothy to address the issue of false doctrine that was being spread in the church in Ephesus. His concern is not women in leadership per se, but the propagation of false doctrine by both men and women. First Timothy was not written as a manual of church order to be observed by all churches at all times, but to address the unique situation that existed in Ephesus at the time.

This is borne out by the fact that "authority" in 2:12 is a translation of the Greek word authentein, a word that is found only here in the entire New Testament. If Paul was addressing the normal exercise of authority in the church, we would expect him to use exousia, which he and other New Testament writers use over 100 times. That Paul uses this strange Greek word that neither he nor any other New Testament writer ever used is a clear sign that he is addressing a unique and local situation in Ephesus and is not giving instructions for all churches everywhere.

Those who would restrict the role of women in the church cannot claim Paul as an ally or an authority for their stance.

An Amazing Word From God

Much of the church has refused to recognize the gifts of its female members and has, thereby, violated Paul's command in 1 Thessalonians 5:19, "Do not quench the Spirit." As a result of this disobedience, many gifts have lain dormant while millions have perished without Christ, and the church has languished in defeat.

In 2010, I awakened very early one morning and, not wanting to awaken Sue, went into an adjoining room where I sat on a sofa enjoying the solitude and quietly communing with the Lord. At some point, I sensed my heart become very still and quiet, and then I heard, "I want you to be more identified with Sue and what she is doing," a reference to her work for the full acceptance of the gifts and callings of women in the church.

There was a moment of quietness and I then heard the words, "This message has the power to begin a mass movement from Islam to Christianity, beginning with the women."

This article is derived in part from Dr. Eddie Hyatt's book, Paul, Women and Church, available from Amazon in both paperback and Kindle. He and his wife, Dr. Susan Hyatt, have founded the International Christian Women's Hall of Fame in Grapevine, Texas, with the goal of "celebrating God's women of yesterday and creating world changer's today." The website is gwtwchristianwomenshalloffame.com. Visit Dr. Eddie Hyatt's website at eddiehyatt.com.

This article originally appeared at eddiehyatt.com.




I did not feel the need to comment further, BUT I want to make it clear that I am not opposing women in leadership. Rather, I am opposing the incorrect belief that the scriptures support women in leadership. No, what the scriptures do is they DO NOT support any direct prohibition of women in leadership.

For that matter, the scriptures do not directly prohibit getting a face tattoo. So if we go forward with women in leadership, it must be done with wisdom and the consideration that MAYBE there is a reason that God almost invariably chose men to be the leaders (with the noted exceptions). If there is a reason, then we do well to find it and live by it. If there is no particular reason (just a cultural matter, say), then we proceed in faith in the same degree that we have truly submitted our view to the scripture and to prayer.
Hon. Dr. in Acts-celeratology
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3/14/19 10:30 am


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Post Da Sheik
Sound exegesis assumes that we must separate the cultural from the timeless. Clearly, in Corinth there were situations unique to them. Any mature bible student will acknowledge that. Much in the same way I don't greet our parishioners with a holy kiss.

I will pose the questions once more. What are the criteria for selecting Bishops and Deacons? Has God left us to arbitrarily fill these offices based on personal preferences?
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3/14/19 10:37 am


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Post Right Reverend Sheik brotherjames
Your question about Qualifications for bishops, overseers etc are found where they've always been in 1 Timothy 3 and Titus. If you take a look at the Greek in version 1 of 1 tim 3 you will discover the word "man" is a translators preference. The word is actually as follows:
Original: εἴτις

Transliteration: ei tis

Phonetic: i tis

Thayer Definition:

whoever, whatever
Origin: from G1487 and G5100

TDNT entry: None

Part(s) of speech:

Strong's Definition: From G1487 and G5100; if any: - he that, if a (-ny) man ('s thing, from any, ought), whether any, whosoever.

The word the KJV translates as man actually means whoever. So, whoever desires the office of an overseer must fulfill the Qualifications listed below in the rest of 1 tim 3. Additionally, in Acts 6
The qualifications for Deacon were full of faith and full of the Holy Ghost. In both cases, women could fulfill those qualities. And, before you say verses 2 and 5 say husbands it follows if you are translating whoever as a man you would continue to use the masculine pronouns. In vs 11 as I mentioned in my initial post the word wives is gyne which can be wives or just women depending upon your translation and perhaps predilection.

In fact in verse 2 thayers dictionary says the word there transliterated as aner (husband) can mean either Male or female.


Last edited by brotherjames on 3/15/19 10:01 am; edited 3 times in total
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3/14/19 4:16 pm


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Post Re: Da sheik Eddie Robbins
Nature Boy Florida wrote:
brotherjames wrote:
. As to Eddies comment I'm sure he was tongue in cheek


I don't think Eddie is tongue in cheek.

His point is - if we don't interpret in light of the culture of the times - and everything is completely literal - where would that leave us?


Thank you. We just like to find scriptures that support our personal beliefs and ignore the others. I’m guilty too. As for the qualifications of being a bishop or deacon or whatever, my personal belief is that women should be “allowed” to participate in whatever they believe God has called them to and to hunt down a scripture that says they can’t, you may as well use “let the women remain silent.” It’s just as valid, isn’t it? But no, we laugh at that one.
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3/14/19 5:02 pm


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