Changing the Church's Narrative Part 4: Women in Leadership
Updated: Apr 30, 2022
Hello everyone! I can't believe the middle of March is almost upon us! Spring is coming! This is the first real spring I have been entirely excited to see coming in 2 years. We are coming out of a long haul with COVID-19 and so many things are not as they once were. I consider this a good thing. I believe the Lord has allowed COVID-19 to shake us from our lazy slumber in the western world - that has boded well for some, not so well for others (note I did not say the Lord put COVID-19 on us – I don't believe that). The King continues His work in this new year. He is doing a new thing! We must perceive it and go in His direction (Isaiah 43:19).
This brings me to today's blog topic of women in leadership in the church. I can tell you, if you haven't figured it out already, I don't shy away from controversial topics – especially if God is in the midst of them. Shall we begin?
I'm going to cut to the chase. Why beat around the bush?
Women can be leaders in your church and I'm not talking children, youth, women's
ministry, or in the kitchen. Although each of those ministries are valuable to the Church, these are not the only places women can serve the local or international church body. Women can be pastors in your church. Women can be deacons and elders in your church. Jesus is moving his Church back to the basics of the New Testament church we see in the Gospels and writings of Paul after a long season of human misunderstanding, bad scriptural translation and interpretation, and the influence of power-hungry, deceived people. He is restoring the proper balance to his Church – note I said His Church, not their church. Allow me to explain why this is the case. To do this, let's start by going back to Genesis Chapter 2 and setting the stage in the Old Testament then comparing what we see in the New Testament (the new covenant we are now under).
In Genesis Chapter 2, we see the paradise of Eden with two beautiful people, Adam and Eve, in its midst. They tended the garden and cared for the animals, together. They moved about
paradise together, and they loved God, together. Adam and Eve were bone of bone and flesh of flesh – image bearers of God and equals as such in God's creation. Long before the Church as we know it existed, men and women were co-equals. Both Adam and Eve loved, lead, served, and submitted to one another. This was God's original intent! Go to the book of Judges. In Judges 4, Deborah is a prophet, as well as leading Israel, commanding armies, and hearing from God at the same time – with a counter male-dominated culture all around her! God ordained this, again long before the Church existed! I will leave you with one last example of leadership and teaching in the Old Testament – the prophet Huldah. She can be found telling the Kings of Judah and Israel what God has for them in 2 Kings 22:14-20 (their men came to her by the way), and 2 Chronicles 34:22-33). And guess what? The words these ladies spoke came to pass and the men took them seriously! God was working in women despite the predominant male-dominated culture throughout the ancient world!
Fast forward to the time of Jesus and the woman at the well, he revealed his true identity to her and set her free, then she ran back to the town and told everyone about the man who knew her and loved her anyway– our first New Testament preacher by the way (John 4:7-30). Again, a woman, Mary Magdelene, proclaimed the news of the empty tomb (John 20:1-2) and his very real resurrection after meeting him outside of his tomb (John 20:11-18) to Jesus' disciples! Again, Jesus moved for and through women despite a continued male-dominated culture!
Move forward again in time to the first century church in Corinth. Paul was first taught by both Priscilla and Aquila, who led house churches in the port city of Corinth. Priscilla taught Paul, you read that correctly. Priscilla taught other men. (Acts 18:18, 26). Let's not forget about Phoebe, a deacon in the church of Cenchrea (Romans 16:1) – she read Paul's epistle to the church in Rome and worked along side Paul as well. A women named Junia also taught and preached with Paul in his letter in Romans 16:7 and had been imprisoned with him for doing so. The early women of the Church were moving mountains despite the norms of society around them. The early Church didn't mimic the predominant culture, political or otherwise, they countered it! I want to point out that you may find different translations of these verses from the Greek to English where much was literally lost in translation – particularly during the time of King James I of England when the Bible was first translated from Greek to English.
I would ask you to study these verses out for yourselves and search these scriptures for
yourselves – the Word speaks for itself, always. Let the Holy Spirit lead you into all truth about His daughters' call to lead. I don't know what more proof the Church needs that women can lead and teach men, women, and children. Women can hear from the Holy Spirit too. After all, men and women alike were filled with the Holy Spirit on the day of Pentecost (Acts 2:1-4)! If God is no respecter of persons, why are we? What more proof do you need? Nowhere in the Bible does it say, “ladies may not teach truth to men.” I can't find that anywhere. What happened to accepting the Holy-Spirit inspired Word of God? This hurts my heart. I can tell you there are certain men in Christendom right now that, if Paul were with us today, he would have serious issues with them and deal with them according to their rotten fruit. I call those men to better! I call those men back to original intent! I call those men to repentance!
Ladies, don't let anyone hold you back from what God is calling you to do in preaching and
teaching. Your proof that Jesus is not only okay with it but has ordained it is in Holy Scripture. Scripture need be your only authority on the matter, not the ideas of mere men. Go forth in freedom today preaching and teaching the good news of Jesus Christ!
Church, empower women as Jesus empowered the woman at the well and Mary Magdelene.
Empower women as God did in the days of Deborah and Huldah. Empower women as Paul and the 1st century Church did so well even as they were persecuted at every turn. Church, we must repent for allowing cultural ideas and constructs to take precedence over the God-breathed Word! We must repent and make it right for the women of the Church!
God is indeed doing a new thing! Perceive it!
With empowering Love,