What about Anna?

If we read carefully Luke chapter 2, woman by the name of Anna is a prophetess. She continued to speak/declare (the word laleo) to those who were searching for the Messiah. Laleo means to declare one's mind and disclose thoughts.

God considered Anna the perfect person to teach about His Son in the Temple. Yes, I know. The actual word for Teacher isn't there. However, consider what that word didasko actually means.

1. a to hold discourse with others in order to instruct them. b intended to convey instruction and information as well as pleasure and entertainment; making moral observations. It also means to d. explain or expound a thing.

So when Anna continued to speak of Jesus to those who were searching for the Messiah...she was teaching. And she was teaching in the Temple supposedly a "man's domain" considering the Women's Court. However, women actually sacrificed their own offerings to the Lord. Also, this is where she lived for 84 years before Jesus was born. She was not a Levite woman, who were provided for by the sacrifices and offerings. She was of the tribe of Asher. She did devote her entire life to worship, fasting and praying.

What does this tell us? This tells us that God uses willing, devoted vessels for His good purposes. It matters not whether the vessel is man or woman. Both a man and a woman prophesied over Jesus. We don't have to go any further than this one example because it presents a supposed contradiction, does it not?

This leaves us with a seeming inconsistency in Scripture, if we point to 1 Timothy 2:12 as a blanket rule concerning women teachers. Let's see...Anna was willingly devoted to the Lord God. She was submissive to Him and spoke because of the Holy Spirit within her, otherwise, she would not have been a prophetess. (That's what that word means, btw, a female that speaks the word of God.)

Then we look at Titus 2:4 3 the older women likewise, that they be reverent in behavior, not slanderers, not given to much wine, teachers of good things-- . Then we turn to 1 Cor 14. vs 31 says "you can all prophesy one by one, that all may learn and all may be encouraged." He doesn't say "only you men can prophesy". Paul instructs them in vs 34 that the women are to keep silent. The whole chapter is about order in worship...and vs 33 is the famous verse that God is not the author of chaos. The context around this verse is about prophecy! But in vs 19 Paul says he'd rather speak 5 words with his own understanding than 10,000 words in a tongue. This church was having a "free-for-all" chaotic worship service which was not reverential nor godly in nature. Paul admonishes that women should be silent in church and then the next verse 35 says "If she wants to learn something, let her ask her husband." Doesn't that imply questions are being asked? Not women preaching, but desiring to learn?

Then we have the 1 Timothy 2 passage has a phrase that hasn't been addressed here. Paul commands, "Let a woman learn in silence." And back over in 1 Cor 14:31 he talks about all learning. That includes men, too. Men don't just fall out of the womb knowing everything there is to know (although some men sure act that way). Mommas have to teach their sons.

The fact that Paul allowed Pricilla to teach... The fact that he admonished older women to "teach good things"... The fact of Anna teaching in the Temple about Jesus the Messiah... clearly indicates that women should learn as much as they can and when called by God or given the motivational Spiritual gift to teach should willingly do God's bidding to teach. We do not all have the same gifts in the same measure.

I do not see any examples of women pastors. I do not see any examples of women in authority or domineering over men within a church in Scripture. In the ideal, it is men and women working side by side. I do see an example of a domineering woman--Jezabel and we all know what happened to her and should take a lesson and learn something from that.

Biblically, there is substance to women teachers and even teaching in Sunday School. Because of this, and because the Bible does not contradict itself, then there must be a reconciliation. The Holy Spirit does give the gift of teaching to women and gives the Spiritual gift of ministry of teaching to women and the motivational gift of organization/administration. Look at Beth Moore, for crying out loud. But women pastors? No.

The very first set of seven Servers were all men. The Apostles said they could not take time to serve tables (which means to do exactly as it says but also to count money). So they were lending all their time to study and teaching/preaching, Acts 6:2ff. Why men and no women? This was Jerusalem, not Corinth or Ephesus or Rome. The women here knew much of Scripture because they were taught in synagogue and at home. I must point back to Proverbs 31. Our Spiritual place is supporting our husbands and our children. That is how God designed us. That, in no way, means that God won’t use women in Spiritual leadership roles. He gives ample evidence of it in Scripture. He gives ample evidence of it today. This is a seeming paradox until we recognize the diversity of snowflakes. No two are exactly the same and neither are any two humans, regardless of gender. God relates to each of us in the exact manner needed to reach us and if that mean using a toad frog, He will do it. (No, I am not comparing women to toads... well, maybe I am comparing, but I mean no disrespect.)

How many women out there who have children actually have time to devote to a whole church full of people to the extent expected of pastors? If there are three children or more in a family that is equivalent to two full time jobs. It is not fair to her family nor to the church for a mother to be a pastor. Again Proverbs 31. But she absolutely can devote the time needed for family and studying to teach. I see a pastor as a servant of God dedicated to shepherding His flock; his time is not all his own or his family's. I see teaching encompassing preaching as well as Sunday School and Discipleship training and mentoring, in short Discipling. But, we must consider ramifications of one-on-one. Here is a crucial point: we should never put ourselves in a postion that could appear evil. You know exactly what I mean by this. One-on-one situations between men and women are risky undertakings and that's all I'll say on that for the moment.

The very first verse that puts women in their "place" is when she is created from Adam's rib. And then verse 16 of chapter 3 in Genesis. "You shall be eager for your husband and he shall rule over you." Why is it so many people forget this verse? Plain and simple. The husband is the ruler over the wife, period--God said it, not me. That was in Adam's day. As the years rolled by ... centuries later, God directed Paul to add three words to that verse. "...in the Lord." Because we women are first Christians and then wives. We belong first to Jesus as our betrothed husband and then to our physical husbands so our obedience should first be to the Lord and then to our husbands. Does anyone have a problem with this logic?

We must not assume the 1 Timothy 2:12 is a blanket rule or a stone wall against women teaching men or having any Spiritual leadership role. Because of Anna and so many others. A friend of mine, Joanne Flynn said:

Philip's four daughters were active prophetesses in the early church. I would love for someone to tell me how a woman prophesies without breaking her silence, and how it would be profitable if a man is not to learn from it (there is no biblical pattern for a prophet to women and another to men, I double-dog dare you to find it!) Please see Acts 21 for this reference. The prophesying of women in the church was not only happening in Acts, it was predicted by Peter (Acts 2) and prophesied by Joel. If this is evil, why isn't it depicted as such?
Another friend commented about Martha and Mary. It is an extremely good contrast. Tomorrow we’ll talk about them.

Let's Talk About Deborah

I keep bringing her up so let's gather around the fire and talk about her. (No gossip, good stuff only.)

God chose her as a judge. God gave Deborah authority. Not just general authority, but Spiritual authority. Her being a Judge was not Israel's doing nor was it the act of any human to raise her up as a judge. God did it and the reason we know it was God's doing is because there was peace in the land for 40 years while she was judge. Why? Because she led the people in the right ways of God...God's righteousness and not to the left or to the right but in the straight path of the Lord.

  • Jdg 2:18 And when Jehovah raised up judges to them, then Jehovah was with the judge, and rescued them out of the hand of their enemies all the days of the judge. For Jehovah took pity because of their groaning before their oppressors, and those that crushed them.
  • Jdg 2:19 And at the death of the judge, it happened that they would turn and act more corruptly than their fathers, to go after other gods, to serve them, and to bow themselves to them. And they did not fall away from their own doings, and from their stubborn way.

Spiritual authority.

I strongly suspect Deborah was no young chicken. Abraham was 75 and Moses was 80 before God called them into service. I'm practically sure as can be without having Scriptural back up that Deborah was most likely past childbearing years. This is important because of Proverbs 31. Since God ordained a heirarchy, I do not believe that God would take a mother from her children to

That is the Hebrew word for Judge. Interestingly, it means to pronounce sentence, avenge, govern, passively to litigate. The Bible also calls her a prophetess, which generally means an female prophet, inspired woman, poetess or wife of a prophet. So God chose her to judge Israel. God spoke to her and she called Barak to hear the words of God to take 10,000 men and kick the army of Jabin out of Israel. He said he'd go if she did and if she didn't he wouldn't. She said, "All right, but you'll have no glory from this day's work."

How can any man say for certain that God does not want women in leadership roles within the church? God chose a woman from all the men available in Israel. She was obviously the best and most attuned to God's voice at that time. It was such a God-thing because she was not a warrior or a swordsman. In her weakness was God's strength. God does not change.

I submit that God's desire was for women to have leadership roles all along. It was man that changed God's lead. It isn't God Who has changed. It is humankind that has changed. God chooses the best and most attuned to His voice for His work and since God is no respecter of persons, how can any man say for sure one way or another what God's purpose is in what He does? God says He will have compassion upon whom He will have compassion and that means it is not for us to say yea or nay to God's will, correct?

Some questions for thought...

Why did Jesus choose the woman at the well in Samaria? He could have spoken to any number of men of that village. He chose a woman.

Why did Jesus choose to reveal Himself to a woman first in the garden? He could have appeared directly in front of John or Peter who were the first to come rushing after Mary told them that Jesus rose from the dead.

Mary sat at Jesus' feet and drank in His teaching. That wasn't even unusual for a Jewish woman to follow a Rabbi. What did Jesus expect her to do with all that teaching??? Sit in her house and do nothing? Hatch nothing?

Dark Star

(Taking a little break from the series to promote a book. I hope we prove for Christian Fiction what we proved with the Passion.)

Everett Lester and his band, DeathStroke, ride the crest of a wave to superstardom. But the deeper they become immersed in fame, wealth, and power, the more likely they are to be swallowed alive by the drugs, alcohol, and discontentment that have become their only friends.

Does this sound familiar? It could be taken from any celebrity magazine. Why is it we always try to stuff that God-sized hole with eveything but God? Creston Mapes explores this question with a truly wonderfully crafted character. He is evil personified on the outside but on the inside he's just a scared kid. How many times do we parents, teachers, adults look on the outside and figure that's exactly what's going on inside, too. If you have teenagers and you read the first chapter of this book, you won't be able to resist ordering it to see what happens.

I asked Creston what gave him the inspiration for this story he wrote right back with his answer:

Creston: I was reading J.D. Salinger's novel, Catcher In The Rye, around the time I began writing Dark Star. Without really thinking about it, that book showed me the potential power of a first-person novel. Also, I was a huge rock fan growing up in Cleveland, Ohio. Went to many, many concerts-both big groups and unknowns. Read all the rock magazines. Later in life, when I became a Christian, I wondered what would happen if one of these mega-stars found Christ.

It's the great "what if" question. I love going down those paths. I also asked him what kind of advice he had for any up and coming unpublished writers.

Creston: Try not to become too discouraged by the rejections. Keep in mind, it is one editor, one person, that is rejecting your work, not even necessarily that entire publisher. I received a ton of rejections before landing a three-book deal with Multnomah. Many times I questioned God, "I thought I was supposed to be doing this, Lord!" But, if He's put it on your heart, you won't be able to stop trying until God brings a publisher. I read a lot about the craft of writing fiction. Take notes. Read those notes while you're writing. That helps me!

Thanks, Creston! You didn't know it but that was an answer to a prayer of mine. Praise God Who answers our needs and the desires of our hearts.

Now go read all about Creston's first novel Dark Star and see if I'm not right.

The Truth about Women in Leadership 3

Many, many people hold up one verse as the ultimate of prohibition of women teaching men in the church. That verse is 1 Timothy 2:12.

1Ti 2:12 And I do not allow a woman to teach nor to exercise authority over a man, but to be in silence. 13 For Adam was formed first, then Eve. That is the literal translation from e-Sword.

I am not attempting to retranslate the Bible, nor am I saying that the men translators from eons ago got it all wrong. What I am saying is that there is a tendency toward assumptions that perhaps have a bit of prejudice in them rather that objectivity.

I would like to suggest that this prejudice perhaps tinted the translations of Paul's teaching to Timothy. The reason I say this is because the whole of Scripture has evidence of women Spiritual leaders (Deborah and Lydia and Junia et al) plus today there are numerous women who are the only Spiritual leader their children ever see in the home. Please understand there are so many beautiful men Spiritual leaders and this is not a detraction toward them. It is more a focus on the legitimacy of God's use of women in leadership roles.

With this in mind...

The word translated "man" is Aner and means: 1. with reference to sex: male, husband, betrothed or future husband; 2. with reference to age: distinguish adult man from young boy; 3. used generically of a group of both male and female.

Now, why is it that this word that is used generically of a group of both male and female is used in this particular verse? Why wasn't Paul more specific? Why didn't he use the word husband? Oh, actually Paul did use the word aner which is the word husband. And Paul used the word gune which is the word wife in verse 12. And he followed up with a reference to Adam and Eve the very first married couple.

So let's look at the entire verse, okay?

But I do not allow a woman to teach or exercise authority over a man, but to remain quiet. didaskein (5721) de gunaiki ouk epitrepw, (5719) oude auqentein (5721) androv, all' einai (5750) en hsuxia.

didaskein = to teach, to instruct
de = but, moreover
gunaiki = gune = wife, betrothed, woman of any age whether widow or virgin.
ouk = no, not Epitrepo = 1. to turn to, transfer, commit, instruct; 2. to permit, allow, give leave Oude = but not, neither, nor, not even
Authenteo = one who with his own hands kills another or himself; one who acts on his own authority; autocratic; an absolute master; to govern, exercise dominion over one
Aner = with reference to sex: of a male, of a husband, of a betrothed or future husband; with reference to age, and to distinguish an adult man from a boy any male; used generically of a group of both men and women
Alla = but nevertheless, notwithstanding an objection an exception a restriction nay, rather, yea, moreover forms a transition to the cardinal matter
Einai = to be, to exist, to happen, to be present
En = in, by, with etc.
Hesuchia = stillness; quietness; description of the life of one who stays at home doing his own work, and does not officiously meddle with the affairs of others silence

So, with all those words translated from the original Greek with all their meanings. This verse says to me: (de) But (epitrepo) give leave or allow (ou) not (gune) the wife to (didasko) teach or instruct (oude) nor to (authenteo) to take control or dominate the (aner) husband (alla) but rather (hesuchia) being quiet and staying at home minding her own business and not officiously meddling in affairs of others.

For me, it is evident that Paul is teaching both men and women how to conduct themselves. In verse 8, Paul is telling them to pray always, lifting up their hands, without anger or dissention. In verse 9, the women are to adorn themselves with proper clothing and verse 10, they are to pursue good works (as opposed to gossiping etc. I would assume). Verse 11 is crucial to the context. She is to receive instruction from her husband with submissiveness and to (verse 12) not be autocratic or domineering in teaching and instruction for this will kill, but to learn from her husband in quietness, being at home about her own business of raising and providing for her family.

In other words, it is not the wife who should teach her husband, but the husband who should teach his wife in an ideal world. God commanded Adam to not eat of the Tree of Knowledge and through Adam, Eve learned the command for the command was given before Eve was created.
Should a woman teach if asked to teach a class? Yes. As long as her husband is not in the class.

This is a back door instruction to the men so that they should study deeper to stay ahead of their wife.

What I see in these verses is far superior to just an instruction to women to be quiet in church.
The ultimate responsibility is the husband’s.

Therefore, when one studies Paul's statement "I do not allow a woman to teach or have authenteo (dominion, domineer, authority) over a man AND when Scripture holds many examples of women having church in their homes (Nympha, Junia & Pricilla), or Lydia by the river, Deborah a judge, Anna in the Temple, Paul's fellow workers Euodia and Syntche at Philipi, and all the women that sat at Jesus feet gathering His dust as He walked through Gallilee and Judea soaking up His teaching numbered among the original 120 Believers who were called apostles ---- One must broaden the scope to understand since there are no contradictions in the Bible Paul must have a broader meaning than "no women teachers". Just as "morning and evening" means a single 24 hour period... Paul's teaching to Timothy cannot mean no woman may teach a man or preach. All of Scripture does not uphold that interpretation! Instead, the Greek words used mean "wife" and "husband" in almost the same breath Paul speaks of the very first married couple Adam and Eve. Paul is talking about authority/order of a husband and wife. Not any woman having authenteo over any man and vice versa. There are too many examples -- but even one example would be enough to make a Bible student take a step back from the deliberate statement 'No women teachers of men'.

Let's take a look at a seldom noticed example of a woman having a gentle authority over a man in the book of John chapter 2: Three days later there was a wedding in the village of Cana in Galilee. Jesus' mother was there. 2 Jesus and his disciples were guests also. 3 When they started running low on wine at the wedding banquet, Jesus' mother told him, "They're just about out of wine." 4 Jesus said, "Is that any of our business, Mother--yours or mine? This isn't my time. Don't push me." 5 She went ahead anyway, telling the servants, "Whatever he tells you, do it."

Did Mary yank the reigns out of Jesus' hands? No. Did Mary tell Jesus what to do over His objection? Most certainly. Did Mary sin in doing this? No. She was His mother and therefore had a great amount of authority over Him. Up to the point when the crippled man was let down through the roof and Mary along with Jesus brothers asked to see Him and He took the authority from her at that point when He said, "Who are my mother and my brothers?" and He stretched out His hand toward His disciples and said, "Here are my mother and my brothers!" Matthew 12

I realize no one is disputing the authority a mother has over her child... but Jesus was 30 years old at this time. However, Mary also exerted authority over someone else's servants! She told them what to do and they did it. The fact is, there are God-ordained instances where a woman does have authority over a man such as the authority a wife has over her husbands body. His body is hers and no other woman's. The authority a woman has over her boy children--no matter their age. "Honor thy father and thy mother."

And the duty is also directed toward the parents "Parents do not provoke your children to anger." Women had authority over men slaves and Paul taught repeatedly that slaves were to submit to their master's in Christian love.

When a woman (or a man) teaches/preaches, is she exerting authenteo over anyone?

Absolutely Not.

The Teacher is imparting wisdom. Does a Pastor exert authenteo over the church? He had better not. That word implies dictatorship rather than leadership. A Shepherd leads with gentleness and wisdom and protection. What sheep listen to orders or even are in the proper mood to obey when the shepherd is a tyrant without regard to feelings of others, who takes away another's ministry/job for himself and portrays the opposite of Christian love--which is exactly what that word authenteo means?

If you go to the Lifeway.com website and do a search on Spiritual Gifts, you will find a PDF file about it. In that, there is teaching concerning the ministry gift of Pastor/Shepherd. It states that women have a natural inclination toward this ministering gift. Women "do it" better than men because we have the mother instinct. Pastoring is not a motivational Spiritual gift. Those motivational gifts are listed in Romans 12: a. prophet/perceiver b. exhortation/encouraging c. teaching/edifying d. service/ministry e. giver f. administration/organizing g. mercy/compassion

Ephesians 4:11-16 lists the gifts which are specifically for the perfecting of the saints for the works of the ministry and for the edifying of the body which are: a. apostles b. prophets c. evangelist d. pastor e. teacher.

1 Corinthians 12:7-12 we find the manifestation of the Spirit gifts. These gifts are given by the Holy Spirit specifically for the Glory of God the Father, the Son and the Holy Spirit. They are: a. Wisdom through the Spirit b. Knowledge through the Spirit c. Faith through the Spirit d. Healing through the Spirit e. Miracles through the Spirit f. Prophecy through the Spirit g. Discernment of spirits through the Spirit h. Various tongues i. Interpretation of tongues.

Where in any of these lists of gifts which are God Given is the Overseer or Elder? In fact, after Paul's first mission trip from Antioch, Luke reports that Paul appointed the Elders and Overseers. In Acts 13, the Holy Spirit called Paul and Barnabas as missionaries to do the work that He had called them to do. So my question is this -- How many men in the pulpit and leading churches are God-called and how many are man appointed?

The Truth about Women in Leadership 2

I may be preaching to the choir but this is something I just must get out of my system... There are so many precious men who love the Lord and are so sensitive to His voice. There are others who are not so sensitive. In the same way, there are women exhibiting the same attributes. We are each individuals making up the Family of God and each of us is given our Spiritual Gifts according to the Holy Spirit's discretion.

A brand new Christian just does not have the maturity to teach Bible lessons. God provides more mature Christians to mentor and teach those newbies. God will use the willing heart to further His purposes. All hearts are the same color regardless of gender or race. Not all hearts are filled with the same stuff, though. Some are filled with God's Spirit and others are still encased in stone, uncircumcised.

I cannot dance ballet, in order to do that I'd have to study for years. I will tell truly, I have taught for years in different age groups and to be perfectly blunt--unless I studied what I was to teach, I taught nothing. Many times, I have taught a whole hour and not remembered what I said...but without exception, those times have been when I studied to teach. I have studied the Bible for 40 uh- hmm years and I have learned a valuable lesson...I must always study to show myself approved and to be a good instrument for the Holy Spirit. But even Paul stressed the necessity for the Spiritually Mature to teach. In Acts 14, Luke tells us that Paul and Barnabas appointed elders in each congregation. And another lesson that I have learned is that I have much, much more to learn.

A person who is knowledgeable and capable of teaching the Bible and biblical principles in the middle of a bunch of newbie Christians... It stands to reason that this person is a missionary.

I want to share two examples...

Born in Virginia on December 12, 1840, Charlotte Digges Moon grew into a cultured and educated woman. During a sermon in 1873 at her church in Cartersville, Georgia, she heard her call to China to share the gospel. On July 7, 1873, the Foreign Mission Board of the Southern Baptist Convention appointed her a missionary to China and in autumn of that year, she set sail for Tengchow. Lottie spent most of her missionary years in Tengchow and P’ingtu where she taught at mission schools and ministered to women. She eventually adopted Chinese dress and learned the Chinese language. Having immersed herself in Chinese culture, Lottie earned respect among many Chinese people and her missions work won many to Christ. At the urging of Annie Armstrong, the SBC annual Christmas Offering for foreign missions was named Lottie Moon Christmas Offering.

Throughout the 1880s and 90s Utah Methodism's force of women missionaries varied between 10 and 15. Most of them assisted a male minister, but in smaller towns the ladies often worked by themselves, even holding Sunday services and delivering sermons. Most were single and thus able to devote their entire energies to one- to two-year missions. A few married while in the Utah mission field. And many developed trusting relationships with the Mormons among whom they worked. A Miss Baker, while teaching in Moroni, was asked on two separate occasions to give a talk at a Mormon funeral. Although most of these missionaries went quietly about their work, a few were outspoken warriors for national Methodism's campaign against polygamy. Missionary Angie Newman wrote and lectured with some success against the appointment of a Mormon army chaplain and the seating of two Mormon polygamists in Congress. She was also the guiding force behind the Salt Lake Industrial Home for polygamous wives.

Now look at this passage from Matthew 28:18-20

18 And Jesus came and spoke to them, saying, "All authority has been given to Me in heaven and on earth. 19 Go therefore and make disciples of all the nations, baptizing them in the name of the Father and of the Son and of the Holy Spirit, 20 teaching them to observe all things that I have commanded you; and lo, I am with you always, even to the end of the age." Amen.

Did Jesus mean make disciples of just the men? Did He mean just the Jews? When Paul used that Greek word translated "nations"... Ethnos he meant the Gentile Christians. But here, I take Jesus to mean all the human race.

So who was He talking to? The eleven disciples, of course. So when those guys died, did the Commission die, too? Of course not.

There is a cross reference in the NASB: Mark 16:11 "When they heard that He was alive and had been seen by her, they refused to believe it."

Gee. Was this because it was a woman that shared the Good News? Of course not. Belief is a personal choice and does not stem from gender.

What about other commands to preach and teach? Matt 10:27
"Whatever I tell you in the dark, speak in the light; and what you hear in the ear, preach on the housetops."

Col 3:16 Let the word of Christ dwell in you richly in all wisdom, teaching and admonishing one another in psalms and hymns and spiritual songs, singing with grace in your hearts to the Lord

To name a couple... The fact is, we all have a responsibility which is given to us the instant we become Christians. Paul names them in 1 Corinthians 12 and we find in Romans 12 the motivating gifts we are given to do the job we are given responsibility for. The fact is, not all of us have the same responsibility or the same gift. This is what makes us a whole body and not a bunch of ears or eyes or hands or spare hearts lying around.

Were these commands just to men? Some people think so and even preach it to be so. It would seem Paul says so blatantly: Col 1:28 Him we preach, warning every man and teaching every man in all wisdom, that we may present every man perfect in Christ Jesus.

Did he mean to leave out the women? No, obviously not because of Titus 3 "the older women likewise, that they be reverent in behavior, not slanderers, not given to much wine, teachers of good things--" But wait! What is that word translated “man” in the above verse? It is the Greek word anthropos meaning "of the human race whether male or female. Also meaning different from plants, animals, from God, from angels. In three words – anybody, everybody human.

Frankly speaking, when a person obeys the Lord and shares the Gospel with those around him, he is in the will of God, nothing else matters! When a person is in the will of God, He blesses their work, regardless of gender, race or stature.

So, if there is only one person who is Spiritually Mature to teach Biblical Principles and lead a Bible study (which btw is the same as preaching sometimes), that one person must obey God’s command through Jesus and teach!

The authority for the missionaries is the church. Why is it okay for women to be missionaries and teach men, but not okay for them to teach men in church? If it is against God’s will for there to be women teachers in the church, why does God bless the efforts of millions of women who teach in the church?

…unless, of course, Paul really was talking about a specific problem within the church at Ephesus.

The way I read that Great Commission is this: The Goal is when we meet someone to make sure that someone is never the same again because he or she has met Jesus. If everyone would keep that goal in mind instead of worrying about what color a person is or what gender the person is…the entire world would be changed one person at a time.

I do not think a woman should be president nor do I think a woman should be a Pastor. The reason for this is physiological--menopause. I don't care how many hormones a woman downs, she cannot control her emotions 24/7, regardless of what Martha Stewart says. On the same coin, men have been known to lose self-control, too. But, there is a hierarchy set by God and that is 1. Christ; 2. Husband; 3. Wife; 4. Children. Even though there is a hierarchy set by God, I believe there is too much Scriptural evidence that illustrates God's willingness to set women in leadership roles.

The first one is Deborah (Judges 4). It takes a special woman to do well in the Spiritual leadership of a nation. Deborah did it. Does that mean all women can? No. Nor, can just any man do it. But, God does the calling, not humans. When God calls, it is our responsibility to answer that call with a pure and willing heart in obedience to our Lord Almighty.

The Truth about Women in Leadership

I started this study in my post back in The Perfect Wife in Proverbs 31. A little expounding on this subject will follow. It has been my experience that most men have a huge problem with women in leadership roles in the church. It is not Biblical that women should not hold teacher postions or have leadership roles. I'll take this week and discuss it.

Scripture does not contradict itself. Therefore, we must do as Paul commended the Bereans and measure Scripture against Scripture for pure understanding, anyone who says he completely understands all of Scripture does not know what he is talking about. It is too deep.

So we must pick up a few pieces of the puzzle here and there and put them in place to see if they fit. If they do, voila! If they do not, then we must do some more hunting and digging to find more pieces.

Let me point to a few things that we should include in this discussion that could shed some light on Paul's teachings.

Timothy was in Ephesus. He was left there by Paul to deal with certain problems in that church such as false doctrine (1 Tim 1:3-7; 4:1-3; 6:3-5), disorder in worship (2:1-15), the need for qualified leaders (3:1-14) and materialism (7:6-19). This letter was written to the Pastor of a church of Gentiles. These people had not grown up learning Scripture. They did not have the opportunity to sit at Jesus feet as Mary did. And Mary did follow Jesus on His ministry journeys as did Joanna, Susanna and many other women. Luke 8. They traveled with Him. (Noted by the idiom "she sat as His feet". Dwight Pryor taught in his seminar "Jesus was a Jew" that this idiom means a "disciple of". And the term following doesn't mean opening the morning paper to "follow" how the Saints are doing in football. It meant literally "gathering His dust". As Jesus walked down the road, His feet would kick up dust. Thus, as His disciples walked behind Him, they gathered the dust kicked up by his feet—therefore, following Him. At one time, over 500 people were following Him. That was a lot of dust.

I ask you: Is that any different than today? Jewish women experienced a lot of freedom that the neighboring countries did not give their women. Already many examples of that have been presented. Lydia is another example Acts 16. Did Paul march up to Lydia and tell her she could not teach anymore? Now here is an interesting point: There weren't 10 Jewish men, heads of households that were interested enough to form a synagogue so the women met to read the OT and pray and discuss what they read. What does that really say? It says the men were not doing what God had commissioned them to do...be the Spiritual Leaders. So the women did it.

In some areas of the U.S. there are a lot more women in church than men. It is a sad state of affairs. My church has about 70% elderly.

And if women were doing what God called them publicly to do and that is teach their children in the Lord as the mother of King Lemuel of Massa did (Prov 31)...then there would be plenty of good theologically solid Christian men doing what God called them to do.

I would think that being called a "fellow worker" by Paul in Rom 16:3 would be excellent commendation. Except she was called by her nick name Prisca. Neither she nor Aquilla were reprimanded for pulling aside this great teacher "mighty in Scriptures", who had been instructed in the Lord and teaching him The Way. The fact that what Aquilla and Priscilla did was mentioned is an implied commendation.

However, that isn't the point of this passage. The point is Truth Teaching as opposed to Incomplete Teaching and/or False Teaching, is the point isn't it? Just because a person is a man does not make him in authority over a woman. That is false teaching. It is the husband's role to cover his wife. I was submissive to my father. And submissive to my husband all the way through all the infidelities.

God does not call us to be submissive to just any man, only to a husband. I will not be submissive to just any Jack I meet. That is not only ridiculous but stupid. Do not ever teach your daughter to be submissive to any man just because he is a man and he is in the church. Authority comes from the permissive will of the Lord God Almighty Romans 13:1 and the ability to handle authority comes as a Spiritual Gift of the Holy Spirit. 1 Cor 12:28 Respect, on the other hand is earned by the person in authority. While I can respect a person because he is a person or because of his position, I quickly lose respect for that person when I hear false teaching coming from his mouth.


When I lived in Baton Rouge, I had a delicious opportunity to go to a Messianic Jewish celebration of Rosh Hashannah (Feast of Trumpets). If you ever get a chance to celebrate this you are in for such a wonderful experience.

I had never before heard the Shofar blow. The lights were dim and there was a hush as everyone found their seats. I looked at my friend with a, "Well, now what?" expression. There was a trembling excitement from the unknown and the known. The known because I was wondering if it would be like the Passach we had at our church and how thrilling that was to find out how every single bit of the Passover pointed to Jesus. The unknown because we were worshiping with a group of Messianic Jews that I had never met before. What a blessing.

The first blast sent chills up my arms and legs and made my feet lift up off the floor. Three short blasts and I was ready to see God. Every gathering of God's people came to mind. Mount Sinai and Moses and most especially the march around Jericho. It was like I was there and lived it in the space of the Shofar blasts.
The Shofar lifted me up. I had to literally hold on to my seat so I wouldn't just jump up in the air. It is the single most thrilling sound I have ever heard and that includes my babies' first cries.
When Jesus comes to get us, I believe that it will be on His shout and that only we Christians will hear the trumpet blow for The Gathering to Himself. Even now I can feel the thrill of God. How I love Him! How I can hardly wait to hear His shout.

If you would like to hear this magnificent sound click Shofar go down the page a bit and you'll see "Shofar Wave". You will be blessed.

Important Recall

IMPORTANT RECALL The maker of all human beings is recalling all units manufactured, regardless of make or year, due to the serious defect in the primary and central component, or heart.

This is due to a malfunction in the original prototype units, resulting in the reproduction of the same defect in all subsequent units. This defect has been technically termed, "Subsequential Internal Non-morality," or more commonly known as S-I-N, as it is primarily symphonized by loss of moral judgment.

Some other symptoms are: (a) Loss of direction (b) Foul vocal emissions (c) Amnesia of origin (d) Lack of peace and joy (e) Selfish, or violent, behavior (f) Depression or confusion in the mental component

The Manufacturer, who is neither liable or at fault for this defect, is providing factory authorized repair and service, free of charge, to correct this S-I-N defect, at numerous locations throughout the world.

The number to call for the recall station in your area is: J-E-S-U-S WARNING: Continuing to operate the human unit without correction voids manufacturer's warranty, exposing owner to dangers and problems too numerous to list, and will result in the human unit being permanently impounded.

Jesus said "I am the Way, the Truth, and the Life" BELIEVE IT!

(Thank you to whoever wrote this eons ago!)

Doing What I Can't

I really needed what I was reading this morning in my notes. I have been trying to do everything by myself because God gave me those abilities. Those things that I can do in an most excellent way such as reading and doing my school work. Writing my school papers. Studying my Sunday School lesson so I can teach on Sunday. But... when things get piled up so high that I can't see over them, can't see around them, can't see under them and I just can't go through them, suddenly I realize I need God's help.

Well... Beth Moore had some words of encouragement for me today and remember, I wrote this down last April 12, 2005. Just writing it down does not mean that we will retain if forever...

I am not stuck with permanent flaws. I have the fruit of the Spirit (Gal 5:22-23). I must use this fruit and exercise in this fruit. We are called to exclamation mark living! I must strive toward His working His works in me. I can't do a great work in myself. I do not have the strength. But He does and He promised to do this, so there is no struggle with His energy in me. God reveals this through His Spirit just as He bestows gifts through His Spirit. What makes me think that fulfilling what God has called me to do won't cost me anything?

Just as God provided all that was needed to build the Tabernacle, He provides all that is needed to act beyond my capabilities. Selah.

2Co 1:8 For, brothers, we do not want you to be ignorant as to our affliction having happened to us in Asia, that we were excessively burdened beyond our power, so as for us even to despair of living. 9 But we ourselves have the sentence of death in ourselves, that we should not trust on ourselves, but on God, the One raising the dead
With power like that, who can defeat us? With power like that, how can we fail? Father, help us to wake up with You on our minds and to always ask You to manage our time and to help us use Your energy in us. Amen

Have you ever...

...noticed how we have a tendency to push the envelope until all the contents come flying out, fluttering around us in an untidy heap? Sometimes we get so busy, we don't listen. We try to gather up all the scattered pieces and then we continue to stuff more into the envelope! Why is that?

Last April, I was in tears because I had so much in my envelope that I didn't put there, but I was still juggling and arranging and putting in order so that I might have some time to do Gina things. You know, those things that are so satisfying and only mean something to just yourself. Then in the summer I took some classes which jammed my envelope so full that there was no way to seal it. But, the difference was, I put everything in that envelope by my choice and all by myself. It was a choice to do it and I did it.

Now, I'm coming to a point in a couple of months where I'll be finished with school and still God has not broken the egg of enlightenment over my head about what He desires me to do with the rest of my life.

I prayed and prayed that He would reveal to me what He wants me to do. In the mean time, while waiting for the Light to burst forth on my road to Damascus, I was asked to speak at an Envangelism Ministry Conference about grants and what to do to get ready to write a grant. I called it "Show Me The Money". That was in April. I made sure I got plenty of business cards and information from the folks there about their ministries and how to get in touch with them.

Then I prayed some more about what He wanted me to do. In the mean time, I went to summer school and learned about American Government, computers and American History, took my Mom to see her sisters, went on an astounding trip to OK City and experienced the deeply moving Federal Building Memorial and Bricktown paid for by grants and contributions. I prayed some more about what God wants me to do.

Then this fall, I'm taking Criminal Justice Ethics, Research Methods, Juvenile Delinquency and White Collar Crime in America. This gives me enough credits to have a Sociology degree. While studying for a test I got a phone call from a precious young woman who had started a ministry for women in central Louisiana. She needs me to write a grant, or maybe several grants, for this ministry. I met her last April at the conference. Since then I have been coaching her at what kind of information I need her to gather and how she needs to put her goals on paper so we can get this grant(s) written.

I prayed again last night for God to share His goals for my life with me. When do you think He'll answer my prayer?

Adventure of writing and critical analysis

One fascinating thing about writing is, What do people actually think about when reading a creative piece?

You can join us this week in a discussion with the author of this creative work of fiction called Ezekiel's Shadow by David Long. The critique is at J. Mark Bertrand's place here. Of course if you want to add your own comments you can do that at Faith In Fiction message board located here. The point is not to voice opinions per se, but to learn from those in the biz so to speak. Dave Long is director of acquisitions at Bethany House Publishing. Talk about getting a terrific inside look!!!


No, it's not Mork and Mindy month. It's the National Novel Writing Month. I signed up to be reminded several months ago and voila I received an email that it is time to sign up. I became intrigued with this while I was doing some research about writing. How exhausting this is going to be. But, how rewarding it will be on the other side!

Since I don't have an agent, nor do I have a contract, what better way to light a shuck under me than to enter this contest. So, I'm asking for your prayers. I'm asking that I might know God's will beyond any doubt by this contest. Actually, it isn't a contest. It is more like an event for writers. I will...

Write like crazy for thirty days. If you write 50,000 words of fiction by
midnight, local time, November 30th, you will be added to our hallowed Winner’s
Page, and receive a handsome winner’s certificate and web icon. The adding of
your name to the Honor Roll of Winners requires that you send in a version of
your novel in text format (scrambled for security) to our site to be counted.

Some authors have gotten book deals from this event, others have fine tuned their writing skills and still others found out that writing just wasn't what they wanted to do with their life. I have so much on my plate right now and this is a scary commitment for me. We'll see what God has in store.

I invite you to do the same. If you've had a story idea rolling around in your head or if you just want to see what others are doing, the pitfalls, the crying, the screaming... what we writers go through then come join the fun. It will be a creative frenzy!

Tagged again

5 idiosyncrasies -- tag from Gayla (I can't believe how much I am like her. Except for the bags she likes and having to watch TV with a blankie, I have her idiosyncrasies, but I'll choose some different ones)

1. I can live with a little clutter until one day I can't stand it anymore and I go into hyperdrive and a cleaning frenzy.
2. I never react to chain letters. I never send them on... not even the recipe ones... If an email has a line at the bottom that says "Send to at least 5 people... blah blah blah." I never send it on and I have never been sorry or had something bad happen to me.
3. I have fought a stupid fear of roaches for years. At least now I don't go squealing through the house and jump up and down. Now I just bite my cheeks and search for something big to squish them to death. Maybe a shudder or two.
4. I must have the fan on high at night and the temp turned down. This has been really difficult since my Mom gets cold easily and I'm burning up. This is one of those things I have to pray about, otherwise I never get to sleep.
5. I must brush my teeth at night or I can't sleep. It comes from when I had braces. I was constantly brushing my teeth because I didn't want to have that gunk on my braces; it looked nasty. Therefore I haven't had a cavity in 35... oh, all right, 40 years.

Pia was so gracious to tag me...
23rd post,it was another Tag post :) The 5th line

5 years ago--I was with my husband in Hawaii and what a fabulous place to go!

I would rather do a different kind of tag...
Grab your digital camera and take pictures of
1. The top of your desk. (Do not do a clean up job just to take this picture.)
2. Your pet
3. A project you've been working on for a long time.

To be fair, here are my offerings...

My desk top which I did not clean up before taking this pic.

Our cat Scooter. Not a very elegant name for such a pretty cat. My Dad named him and he was really Dad's cat before he died. I call him Scooter Booter and there is no reason for that name.

My quilt top which will be finished
around 2020 at the rate I'm going.

A Case of Dog Food

There is a very enlightened and fun pastor of North Monroe Baptist Church who has a morning devotional on channel 11 every weekday morning. I make a point of being there to see how Bill Dye looks at the world and life with the Christian worldview. He, so very often, gives me a chuckle or an insight that is a gold nugget I carry around all day. This morning was a special delight that I can't pass the chance to share.

The one this morning went like this:

Pastor Bill's dog took a dislike to dry dog food. Just wouldn't eat it. So he got the idea to buy some nice, juicy canned dog food. As soon as that food hit her bowl, she dived into and when he came close to the bowl, she got this mean look in her eye and actually snarled at sweet Pastor Bill, like she was saying, "Don't you dare come near my food. Don't you dare try to take it away from me!"

Why would he take it away? He went to the store and bought the food, opened the can, dumped the food in. Bill Dye doesn't eat dog food. Dog food does not sustain Bill Dye. Bill Dye takes care of and loves his dog and when he went to all that trouble would never, ever take it back.

Pastor Bill said that God shone a light on that moment. God said, "Bill, it's all dog food to Me."

I have never contemplated that thought before. It is all dog food to God. He created us, His good and most excellent, fragile creation. He created the world and all that is in the universe. He provided all the ingredients for us to survive in abundant living with not only delicious, juicy food, but also the universe around us filled with amazing discoveries to exercise our brains. Once the home was created, Man sinned. Then, God sent His Son to pay the bride price so sin would no longer make us slaves... the Law would have no claim on us... death has no sting. God showers on those that love Him all manner of blessings from basic needs to deep desires and those blessings spill over onto those that have no regard for Him.

Knowing that He is the Great I AM, the King of the Universe, we still grab onto all our stuff with a death grip and snarl at God when He draws near.

Bill Dye quoted Corrie Ten Boom: Don't hold on to your things with such a tight grip that it hurts when God has to pry your fingers loose. (loose paraphrase)

We so often lose sight of the bald fact, it's all dog food to God.

The Wane of Etiquette

I have found the most delicious book on etiquette written by Sarah Anne Foster in 1869 or somewhere thereabouts. It is public domain and an ebook which can be found by clicking on the post title.

Never smack the lips when eating.

Never take a long, deep breath after you finish eating, as if the exercise had fatigued you.

Never make noises in your mouth or throat.

Never suck your teeth, or pass your tongue round the outside ofyour gums.

Never, even with cheese, put your knife into your mouth.

Never pick your teeth, or put your finger into your mouth. If you find you have a fish-bone in your mouth, cover your lipswith a napkin to remove it. It is better to be very careful to remove all bones before putting fish into your mouth. On no account spit the bones out upon your plate.

Never take the bones of fowl or birds up in your fingers to gnaw or suck them. Remove the meat with your knife, and convey it to your mouth with your fork, never being too eager to clean off every particle of flesh.

Wipe your finger tips, if soiled, upon the table napkin, never upon your tongue or the table-cloth. An elegant eater will never have occasion to think of his fingers.
Never use the table-cloth to wipe your mouth, you might as well use it in place of your pocket handkerchief.

Never remark upon what is placed before you, either in praise ordispraise of it.

Neither drink nor speak when you have anything in your mouth.

When you are helped, begin to eat, without regard to those who have already, or have not yet, been helped.

Never watch the dishes as they are uncovered, nor make any exclamation when you see their contents. Under no circumstances tuck your napkin, bib-fashion, into yourshirt collar. Unfold it partially and put it in your lap, coveringyour knees. A lady may slip a corner under her belt if there is danger of its slipping upon her dress, but a gentleman must be awkward indeed if he lets his napkin fall upon the floor.

No gentleman will ever settle himself in his chair, pushing back his cuffs, as if for a "set-to," at the table.

If you make any general remark, do not look up at the waiters to see what effect it has upon them. If they are well-trained they will not move a muscle at hearing the most laughable story, nor will they give any sign whatever that they have not closed their ears like deaf adders to all that has been going on. In any case, however, you must refrain from noticing them. If you want anything, take the occasion of a waiter being near to you, to ask for it in an undertone. To shout out "Waiter!" or order one about, as if you were in a restaurant, is a certain markof ill-breeding. Unless the party is a very small one, general conversation is impossible. In such a case, you must converse with those on eitherside of you, not confining your remarks exclusively to one.

As I have been reading this most enlightened etiquette book, I have noticed such a drastic and, sorry to say, great chasm between the mid-nineteenth century and today. Not just in years, but in everything that is genteel and courteous. I read these dos and don'ts and I can remember my mother teaching some of them to me, like a gentleman should always remove his hat in church. When I grew up, gentlemen did not wear hats. They were call caps and baseball was always said in front of it. Baseball cap. I remember gentlemen opening doors for me and greatly watching their language when I was in the room. Now, I see all kinds of foul things on the internet and within my hearing if I'm not careful about what movie I'm watching. It makes me want to cry out, "Oh, Jesus, come quickly!" Then the faces of people I love flash in my memory. People I know do not have Jesus in their hearts and I say, "Wait, Lord Jesus, get them; gather them like a hen gathers her chicks. Continue just a little longer until they finally get it." So I will bear the crassness of today, just so the lost will have a bit more time to come home.