Should women be pastors? This argument has transcended generations and is still causing division in the body of Christ. There has been a lot of confusion on this matter, each with an opinion and biblical references backing up their points. You may have noticed that a lot of people are against the idea of a woman being their pastor. Some have refused to visit churches where a female presides as pastor while some others do not mind being led by a woman. They read the rest of the scriptures as regards to women in leadership, through the lens of 1st Timothy 2:11-15. Traditions and laws have forbidden the woman from taking the lead in the house of God. Well, it is a good thing that we have the Word of God and the Holy Spirit dwelling within us. Before we start to see how true or how false their opinions are, let us define according to the Word, who the woman is, God’s purpose for her and how it relates to the pastoral call. Let’s take off our gender-based sentimental hats, rid ourselves of every opinion and look at it with a fresh pair of eyes.
God’s Purpose for the Woman
The woman was not an afterthought. She was neither created out of necessity, merely because man needed assistance. She was created to dominate just like the man. Yes! She was created after the man but she isn’t inferior to him. Gen 1:26 tells us that God made Man in his own image and likeness and he created them male and female. God is Spirit, the real you [man] is spirit and a spirit has no gender. Whatever God said to the man, He referred male and female. When He gave the dominion mandate in verse 28, He gave it to both male and female. The woman and the man are equal spiritually but different physically; complementary in nature. They were both given the dominion mandate but they were to carry out this assignment differently. The man has the leadership position as he was the first one to be put in the garden. The woman has the power of influence, designed to help the man. She brings a different way of service to the table. This may spoil your traditional beliefs and what you have been taught from the onset, but please read on with an open mind.
Should Women Be Pastors? There is a lot more to see and learn.
Who is a pastor?
A pastor is one of the five-fold ministry, a leader who takes care of the flock, nursing them to spiritual health. The next logical question to ask is this: “Were there any female leaders in the Bible times?”
Should Women Be Pastors? – Some Examples of Women in Leadership
Taking a stroll to Micah 6:4 (NIV), it reads: I brought you up out of Egypt and redeemed you from the land of slavery. I sent Moses to lead you, also Aaron and Miriam… It is very important to note that God himself acknowledged Miriam as a leader. She was part of the team of leaders who led the people of Israel to the promise land. She served alongside her brothers, Moses and Aaron. Like Moses, she made several mistakes during her time as a leader but she repented of them. You’d notice that she was not mentioned as much as Moses or Aaron was. This is because women lead differently from men. Men have a dominant attitude, announcing his authority through words and actions but this is different for a woman. Women lead through influence. This subtle way is not really noticed and taken for granted at times but its effect is felt greatly.
Back to our question, Should Women be pastors? Well, read on.
Deborah, who was a prophetess, a judge and the wife of Lappidoth was another great leader in the bible times. She knew her identity as a woman and understood her God-given authority; the influence and power, given to her. Deborah understood that her position as a judge was not a means for her to oppress the people. This was evident in the way she addressed Barak. The way she led in humility and understanding was so great that Barak refused to go to war without her. He didn’t mind the fact that he would lose the glory of the victory to a woman [Judges 4:8-9].
So what do you think, should women be pastors?
The Bible also identifies Esther, Huldah, Anna, four daughters of Philip and several others. These women understood their God-given purpose and took the lead without disrespecting the position and authority of the man. There is nothing wrong with a woman being a pastor. They have their own unique role to play. The way they lead may be different from men but God totally approves of it. After all, He created them and God never creates anything to fail.
Should Women be Pastors? – Paul’s View
Paul was one of the apostles who dominated the earth through his ministry. He mentioned some things in his letters to the church in Corinth [1st Cor 14:34] and Ephesus [1st Timothy 2:11-15] that forbids women to participate in leadership roles. I believe his intent has been greatly misunderstood. Paul addressed the matter with regard to the happenings in the church at the time. He was speaking to the women and men alike who were struggling with the negative effects of the fall and were still yet to grasp the significance of what Jesus did on the cross.
Gal 3:28 had Paul saying this,
“There is neither Jew nor Greek, slave nor free, male nor female, for you are all one in Christ.” He addressed our spirit-man; the one living in our physical bodies, male and female alike. Anyone who walks in the Spirit is not bound by the Law. The curse is broken. We need to stop living in the past, the chains of the law and stop trying to put God in a box. God’s ways are totally from ours and so are His thoughts. God will use anyone that has made himself or herself available to be used by him.
Just like Myles Munroe of blessed memory would say,
let us ask ourselves which is more important, culture or Christ? Did Jesus ever command a woman to be silent or rebuke her from leading and preaching the Word? Think about these things and do not let culture define God’s standards to you.
Should women be pastors?
Yes! I believe so. In practice, I have discovered that women in ministry care passionately more than men in some cases because of their nature. Many female pastors are also blessed with the great support of their husbands. Kathryn Kuhlman was one of the greatest women preachers who walked the face of the earth. The same goes for Joyce Meyer, another great woman of God. We need to realise that God’s plan for the woman in all areas including leadership has been restored. If you are in Christ and you have the Holy Spirit leading you, God can use you to feed his flock, needless of your gender.
If Jesus did not condemn it, I wouldn’t condemn it either and so should you.
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