Wednesday, July 2, 2008
Ordination #3f: Women in Church Leadership
Men and women are both created in the image of God (Gen. 1.27; 5.1-2), created for and interdependent upon one another (1 Cor. 11.11-12), equally receive the blessing of the Holy Spirit (Acts 2.17-18 = Joel 2.28-29) and the gifts He gives (1 Cor. 12.7; 1 Pt. 4.10), and are full participants in Christ (Gal. 3.28). Women should clearly exercise their gifts within the church, including what seem to be general encouragements to teach one another as a church (Col. 3.16; Heb. 5.12), but there are some limitations to teaching and ruling (1 Tim. 2.12) based on order of creation rather than cultural elements (1 Tim. 2.13). Also, Paul gives directions to male elders, deacons, and deaconesses in 1 Timothy 3, but no reference to women elders. It seems appropriate that women have significant freedom within the church apart from the role of elder/overseer of a body of believers.