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Summarized by "The Council on Biblical Manhood and Womanhood," complementarianism is the viewpoint that God restricts women from serving in church leadership roles and instead calls women to serve ...
I once preached a sermon entitled "What Place do Women Have in the Church Today?" in reading your take on the subject, I got some deeper insights into the role of women, not only in the church, but in the home. In this message, I used the following opening texts: "There is neither Jew nor Greek, slave nor free, male nor female, for you are all one in Christ Jesus." (Galatians 3:28 NIV) "How true it is that God does not show favoritism." (Acts 10:34 NIV) I gave a bit of historical background, some of which I'll include here: God has used women throughout all ages to minister to His people—from Old Testament prophetesses and judges to New Testament deaconesses. In the book of Acts we read about the four unmarried daughters of Philip who were “prophetesses.” (Acts 21:8-9) Paul talks about the leadership roles of Phoebe, a deaconess, (Rom. 16:1-2) Priscilla, a woman worthy of high honor, (Rom. 16:3-5) and two of his co-workers in Philippi: Euodia and Syntche. (Phil. 4:2-3) Mary Magdalene was the first to announce the good news of the resurrection to the incredulous disciples. And a woman of Samaria became an evangelist to her own townsfolk, convincing them that Jesus was indeed the Messiah. (John 4:28-30, 39-42) Old Testament Scriptures speak of Moses’ sister Miriam being a prophetess. (Exo. 15:20) Deborah served as judge over Israel. She not only prophesied, but under God’s direction, ruled over a nation of men and women. (Judges 4:4) The Lord sent the prophetess Hulda to convey a divine message to King Josiah and to the high priest Hilkiah. (2 Kings 22:14-20) A woman as an adviser to a king and a high priest? Despite these biblical exceptions--and the exception proves the rule - I have to agree with S. Michael Houdmann's premise that in the natural order of things, as God planned it, women are in a complementary role. I went on to relate the story of Teresia, a Christian woman in Nairobi, Nigeria, who wanted desperately to serve the Lord. She decided to hold a lady's Bible study in her home. Several women came and some were converted. The Lady's Bible Study group soon outgrew her home. It grew from 17, to 55, to 105, to 200 - during the first month. They moved the Bible Study to a city auditorium that held 2,000, but 4,00o women showed up. She moved to the Convention Center which holds 5,000; 12,000 women showed up. Thousands were being saved and delivered. But because her English Missionary husband had abandoned and divorced her some years back, some preachers were warning the women in their congregations not to attend the meetings of a "divorced" woman. But that seemed to have a reverse effect. She secured the use of Uhuru Park and over 100,000 came to her "Lady's Bible Study." By this time, many of the husbands also showed up. One evangelist in Nigeria went to the Lord in prayer. “Why Lord,” he asked, “did you choose a divorced woman for this great ministry? We have so many wonderful men in our Bible schools, men who pursue You with all of their hearts. Why did You choose her and not one of our graduates?” God’s answer affected him deeply. “I chose her because I wanted to show the world that I could take a broken vessel and make a vessel of honor.” “How this humbled me,” the missionary said. “We’re not chosen for our great qualities. We’re flawed servants who must depend totally on Him.” Teresia had suffered the ultimate humiliation of divorce, but God had lifted her up to a platform of powerful ministry—all to the glory of God! “I, the Lord, do not change.” (Mal. 3:6) “Jesus Christ is the same yesterday and today and forever.” (Heb. 13:8) Peter said, “I now realize how true it is that God does not show favoritism.” (Acts 10:34 NIV) I guess God has the final say! He has every right to make whatever exception to the rule He chooses!
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