Women in Leadership and Biblical Authority

There have been some discussions on social media recently around women in pastoral leadership. This is nothing new of course. But some people have been connecting those who approve of women in leadership with an abandonment of biblical authority.

This is not surprising because there is a strong overlap between those who affirm only men in pastoral leadership and those who see defence of inerrancy as one of the key issues for the church.

For some people, the issue of women in leadership and teaching roles in the church comes down to this:

I do not permit a woman to teach or to assume authority over a man; she must be quiet. (1 Timothy 2:12)

You either obey that or you do not. If you do not obey it, it points to a bigger issue than just the role of women. It suggests that you put your personal preference over the authority of the Bible.

First, I will say that there probably are some people in this category. Some Christians will agree that the Bible teaches a certain thing but they just don’t care.

However, most of the people that I know that support women in pastoral ministry, including myself, come at it from a different angle. I have a high view Scripture and I tend not to just disagree with Paul (or another biblical author) and just do my own thing.

The reason I support women in pastoral ministry is not just because I want to, but because I see biblical support for it. You can find the biblical case for women in pastoral leadership here.

The difference between myself and a person who rejects leadership roles for women is not that they accept the authority of the Bible and I don’t. The difference is that I don’t see 1 Timothy 2:12 as the only word on the issue. When I read the Bible, I see women in leadership roles and women that teach, and this pushed me to go back and try to figure out what 1 Timothy 2:12 says.

If someone disagrees with my view of the role of women, that is fine. But do not accuse me of rejecting the authority of the Bible when my view is actually based on my reading of the Bible.

The post Women in Leadership and Biblical Authority appeared first on Stephen J Bedard.






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