Glass Ceilings

Glass Ceilings

The #metoo movement has impacted every arena of our society from entertainment to government and everything in between. The church has not escaped scrutiny as some have used religion as a weapon to control and manipulate women for their own selfish motives. But Jesus and the early church were radical in their understanding of the value and equality of women in first century Rome. Join us as Pastor Gary Webber explores what the Bible says about women and their unique and vital role in the Church.

In our Essentials we have unity;
In non-essentials we have liberty;
In all things we love everyone always.

The Issue:

Can and should women be permitted to teach and hold leadership positions in the church?

Two realities that frame our conversation this morning:

  1. We cannot allow the church to be tossed about by the winds of culture.
  2. We must be led by the Holy Spirit and by the Word of God.

What Scripture Says:

  1. Men and Women are made in the image and likeness of God and reflect unique but complimentary aspects of His image. (Genesis 1:26-27)
  2. Sin has distorted the image of God in creation, including the relationship between men and women. (Genesis 3:13-19)
  3. Throughout the Old Testament, we have record of how God used women in various roles and ways to accomplish His purpose in the nation of Israel.
  • Miriam: Micah 6:4
  • Deborah: Judges 4
  • Huldah: 2 Chronicles 34:22-23
  • Ruth: The Book of Ruth
  • Esther: The Book of Esther

4. Throughout the New Testament, we see evidence that women played a significant role in the ministry of Jesus and the early church.

  • The ministry of Jesus: Jesus consistently went against the customs and culture of His day to demonstrate the value of dignity of woman.
  • The Crucifixion: (Matthew 27:55-56)
  • The Resurrection: (Luke 24:1-3, 10-11)
  • The Book of Acts – Peter cites an OT prophecy that has been fulfilled: (Joel 2:28-29)
  • The Apostle Paul: (Galatians 3:27-28; Romans 16:1-15)

5. Two passages cited to justify baring women from teaching and holding leadership roles in the church: (1 Corinthians 14:33-35 & 1 Timothy 2:8-15)

Two Problems with the traditional interpretation of 1 Corinthians 14 & 1 Timothy 2:

  1. People who adopt this view tend to be selective in its application.
  2. It appears to contradict other passages

A POSSIBLE Solution:

Paul is addressing a specific problem in the first century that may not apply to every church in every era.

Three SURE Conclusions:

  1. God has and continues to call and equip whomever He chooses to accomplish His purposes.
  2. Each local church must prayerfully follow the leadership of the Holy Spirit under the direction of the full council of God’s Word to determine who should teach and lead in each season ministry.
  3. Sin continues to distort the image of God in creation, including and especially as it relates to how men and women live and work together, but the church is not defined by what sin has broken, but by the redemption offered through Jesus Christ and the New Creation He is establishing.