Wednesday, May 13, 2009

Don't Forget Deborah - Part 5

Common Objections to Biblical Patriarchy

We reviewed in the previous posts (linked at the bottom) how God's authority is patriarchal and how the authority in the church and in the family is a reflection of that.

However, there are a number of objections one might hear when discussing this truth.  While one who has his/her heart set on rebelling against God will find any excuse to do so, we have attempted to address some of the more common objections people have in this area.

There is Neither Male nor Female in Christ

In an attempt to deny that church/family authority is patriarchal, many will refer to Galatians 3:28 which states:

"There is neither Jew nor Greek, there is neither bond nor free, there is neither male nor female: for ye are all one in Christ Jesus."

We should note that the context of Galatians Chapter 3 is not addressing the qualifications for church leadership at all.  It is dealing with our standing before God by faith as His children.

Saying that there is neither male nor female does not mean that gender distinctions are no longer relevant, but that there are no gender divisions in Christ.  The text affirms that we are all in equal standing before God in relation to our salvation; it does not do away with gender roles.

Consider the implications if what people claim is true.  If this text means that there are no more gender distinctions (not just divisions), then God has just normalized homosexuality.  If there is no such thing as male and female for believers because gender is done away "in Christ", then marriage is no longer just between a man and a woman (because there is no male or female).

Clearly such an assertion is foolishness.  This is the type of perverse thinking which results from trying to twist Scripture.  The truth is that the covenant which makes us one in Christ regardless of gender (Galatians 3:28), is the same covenant which says that the authority in the church and in the family is patriarchal (Ephesians 5:22-24; Colossians 3:18; I Corinthians 9:5; 11:3; I Timothy 2:11-12, 3:1-12; Titus 1:6; I Peter 3:1-7). 

The same God who says that man and woman are created equally, is the same God who (in the new covenant) said that the woman must submit to the man. The same God who said there is neither male nor female, also said that He will not allow a woman to be over a man as a teacher (in the new covenant).  Why? Because our God is logical.

God would not call a woman to submit to the authority of the man at home, and then when they cross the threshold of the church, cause the man has to submit to the woman. The qualification for church leadership is that he is one who rules his own house well.  Headship in the family is the proving ground for leadership in the church.

When women usurp the roles God has ordained by "serving" in areas for which they have not been called, they are out of order. What we have is not the Spirit of God in operation but an unclean, unholy spirit.  God is not the author of confusion (I Corinthians 14:33). He will not condemn that which He then turns around to ordain. He will not forbid the very thing that He then exalts. No woman of God is called to operate in roles that expressly contradict God's Word. When people operate outside of what God has ordained (in any area), they are simply rebelling against God.

Jesus Used Women in His Ministry

Women were a vital part of Jesus' ministry, even in terms of helping to fund the ministry work (Luke 8:13).  In a culture where women were considered inferior, the level of inclusion to which Jesus embraced women certainly turned these notions on their head.

It is clear that Jesus considered women to be equally as valuable and necessary as men in their contributions to God's work.  Yet and still, Jesus appointed none of these women to lead His church; and neither did any of the Apostles.

Women were active in His ministry, but never in positions of authority over the church.

Women Carried the Good News of Jesus' Resurrection

Women declared the good news and told the rest of the disciples that the tomb was empty. They were not however ordained as teachers/elders/pastors in the church.

There is a place for women in ministry.  Every believer is called to be a proclaimer of the Good News, which is what these women did. Yet there are criteria for church oversight which exclude women from serving in these roles.

Men Are Not Stepping Up to the Plate

In the Old Testament, Uzzah thought he was doing a good thing by reaching out to steady the ark when it was falling. God struck him dead for that because He had commanded that only the priests were allowed to touch the ark. In this judgment by God, He didn't look at Uzzah's good intentions, only his disobedience. Obedience is better than sacrifice (I Samuel 15:22).

We cannot justify disobeying God by claiming that the need is great or that others who should be doing it are not.  A 'perceived' failure on the part of others does not permit us to rebel against God's commands. When the women spread the good news of Jesus' resurrection, God knew that the men would not believe them.  Yet their shortcoming in this area didn't cause God to simply forget the men and give the women responsibility for establishing His church. He did what was necessary to get the men to a position of faith needed to lead His church...without the need for women to go into disobedience by becoming interim leaders.

God foreknew the times in which we live and He still gave these commands that church leadership be based in patriarchy. Any remedy or redress we think we can offer which requires breaking God's commands is sin. If more people would obey His commands instead of trying to find excuses around them, there wouldn't be so much work to do.

You Cannot Limit the Holy Spirit

This has to be the most disturbing argument. It is interesting that people think the Holy Spirit can go off and act in violation to God's word because that is just what is being done when a woman becomes a pastor...she is going off in violation to God's word. However, God says:

"Howbeit when he, the Spirit of truth, is come, he will guide you into all truth: for he shall not speak of himself; but whatsoever he shall hear, that shall he speak: and he will shew you things to come." John 16:13

The Spirit does not speak for himself but only what the words of the Father say. The Holy Spirit will never do anything different than what God says. We are to hold things up to the light of God's word. God exalts His word even over His own name (Psalm 138:2). If something contradicts His word, it is a lie. Either one submits to God's word or one is preaching another Jesus, under the anointing of another Spirit, and carrying another Gospel (II Corinthians 11:4). Those who are sent by Him will speak according to His word.  If a man (or woman) speaks in contradiction to the word, he is not to be received.

There is Division In the Church On This Issue

There are many who profess faith in Jesus Christ or claim to belong to the church of God.  However, human understanding is not the barometer for God's truths. He alone determines what is acceptable and what is not from His people.

The fact that people may argue over the meaning of Scripture does not mean that the truth of the word doesn't exist.  If we want to know God's commands, then we need to look to His word and ask for understanding by His Spirit. 

The church is in no way divided on this issue. There are simply those who choose to deny God's word and do their own thing. God's word prevents women from being the head of man, even in the church.

If one's understanding contradicts Scripture, then that understanding is in error.

The Scriptures Are Not Clear On This Issue

People see confusion where they want to confusion, because they do not like what God says. Yet God promises to give wisdom an d understanding to all who ask Him.

Where some say there is ambiguity, God gives clear precepts. What some say is up for debate, God states is His will. Truth is not determined by man's understanding, but by the word of God.

If God Can Use a Donkey, He Can Use a Woman

God can use a woman and does in many ways to minister to His people, just not in positions of authority over men in His church.  Further, there is no Scripture which prevents God from using a donkey.  Yet there is Scripture which prevents Him from appointing a woman as a pastor, elder, or bishop.

If a Woman Cannot be Pastor, then How Can She Serve?

What a woman is forbidden from doing is serving as the head or authority of men. The ministry leadership positions include pastor and apostle for these roles had spiritual authority/responsibility for the church.

A woman can teach (as long as she is not set-up as a teacher over men), she can prophesy (the word prophetess is used in Scripture), she can evangelize (which merely means to bring the good news). There is a place for women in ministry, but it is not in leadership of the church.

We Cannot Say Who Is Called, We Can Only Judge By the Fruit

"Either make the tree and his fruit good or else make the tree corrupt, and his fruit corrupt: for the tree is known by his fruit." Matthew 12:33

When trying to justify disregarding God's commands, people are often quick to point to "good works".  Look how many people are coming to the Lord through this work!  Look how many lives are being changed!  Look at how the poor are being taken care of!  What they are asking you to do when they say this is to judge them based on their good works.

Yet there is a difference between spiritual fruit and "good works".  In fact, God says that there will be many  who perform numerous "good works" but are still workers of iniquity who will be cast off from God (Matthew 7:22-23).  There are many who preach in Jesus' name, heal in Jesus' name, cast out devils in Jesus' name. prophesy in Jesus' name...who will be damned because they have not obeyed God's words (Matthew 7:24).

Spiritual fruit is not simply good works for even Muslims, Buddhists, and New Agers give to the poor, feed the hungry, and encourage people to live better lives.  True spiritual fruit is the result of regeneration through a nature change where we no longer are what we were, but have become new so that the life of Christ is seen in us.

The fruit of the Spirit is in all goodness and righteousness and truth (Ephesians 5:9).  If our fruit comes from a root that is against God's commands, then it is unrighteous and not the truth, but a lie.  When a person is in direct, willful disobedience to the word of God, we are not to wait and see if they bear "good fruit", but to recognize that the tree is defiled. God tells us that we are NOT to receive them (Isaiah 8:20).

I Love the Lost SO MUCH, I have to do this

No one loves the lost more than God. Yet, in spite of His awesome love for the lost, He still declares that there is an order and pattern for His authority in the church and in the family. God still declares that women must not be teachers over men, and cannot be pastors, elders, or bishops.

It is the height of arrogance to claim that someone's "love" for others permits them to disobey God for the assumption is that they then love others more than God. God says if you love Him, then you will obey His word. If you say you love Him and do that which against His word, then you are a liar and the truth is not in you.  Any work done in contradiction to God's word is not from Him.

I Am Called to Be a Pastor

One must show himself able to rule his own home well before he can be entrusted to lead the house of God. A calling which willingly lays aside God's words - and teaches others to do the same - is false and not from God. 

God is not the author of confusion. He does not anoint persons to be ordained in roles He has expressly forbidden. God is not a man that He should LIE. If He says that a pastor "must be" a husband, and then He ordains a woman, then He has sinned. Those who support women pastors must believe that God has broken His own commands and shown Himself to be a liar.

Men Willingly Submit to Me as Female Pastor

The standard for what is of God isn't based upon what men receive, but whom God ordains. No anointing from the Lord ever contradicts His word. Everything must be held to the standard of His word. If it does not hold water, it is a lie from Satan.

Man's feelings do not dismiss nor determine what God says. Just because man receives error does not make that error acceptable to God.

God is not going to change His words to accommodate man. What is acceptable to God is not what men receive, but what He says. Those who operate in false authority and those who follow it are all accountable and in error.

Doesn't this make women inferior to men?

No, having different roles for men and women does not make women inferior to men.  It simply means that men and women were made to serve different purposes.

As we reviewed in the article on the purpose of submission, even Jesus is called to submit to God the Father.  This does not make Him less God than the Father, it is simply how their relationship to each other is defined.  Men and women are equal, but they were created to serve in different roles.

What if there is no man to be the head of my family?

Some might ask, "What if I am a single mother?  Don't I have to be the head of my own family?"  First, when we come to Jesus, we come to Him as a bride.  He in turn is our husband.  So in a very real sense, not just spiritually, we are betrothed to One who takes care of our needs, is a friend closer than any other, and who loves us more than His own life.  We can not only turn to Him for guidance in our family life, but we can direct our children to Him as the final authority in our lives.  God is a Father to the fatherless and a Husband to those without a husband (Deuteronomy 10:18; Psalm 68:5; Jeremiah 49:11).  So acknowledging God as the head of your family is reinforcing patriarchy for your family.

Further, consider also that God makes provision for single women in His word through the function of the extended family first, but then through the church (Genesis 38:11; Deuteronomy 14:19-29, 26:12; Acts 6:1-7; I Corinthians 9:5; I Timothy 5:1-16).  This too reinforces God's command for patriarchal authority since the same is also the leader in the family and church.

I have heard people refer to God as our Father-Mother because He is like a Father and a Mother to us. Don't you think that is more appropriate and fair?

God reveals who He is to us in His word and He is described as a Father.  This is not by chance, neither has He mistakenly left out a title of "Mother".  The root for the word Father in Greek is the word "pater" which means:

"Generator or male ancestor; The originator and transmitter of anything; God, the Father."

The concept of fatherhood or patriarchy confirms that ALL comes from or originates in Him. This is the essence of who God is; He is the Creator of all and the word "Father" denotes that to us.  If God wanted to be known as our "Mother", then He would have identified Himself to us as such.  Yet when Jesus taught us to pray, He told us to call to our Father.  This way, we are confirming the creative, eternal, and omnipotent essence of who He is when we approach Him.

Those who call God our "Mother", "Mother-Father" or "Father-Mother" are merely trying to matronize the image of God to support a rebellious depiction of womanhood. 

Why do you make comparisons between matriarchy and homosexuality?

In short, because it is the same spirit in operation.

When the woman functions as the man (and vice versa), it is a role reversal. Both the man and the woman become the opposite of what God has created.  You have a woman who is soulishly operating as the head and a man who is soulishly functioning as the submissive one. This is the basis for homosexuality; it is the foundation of the sodomite nature which was first birthed in the Garden of Eden.

God's main issue with Adam in the fall of man was that he "hearkened unto the voice of his wife" (Genesis 3:17).  This does not mean that a man should not consider his wife's input.  Rather, Adam had forsaken the council of God and instead heeded the authority of his wife over God.  Whereas God had equipped and commanded Him to be the head and her the help; Adam made her the head by submitting to her and shirking his God-given responsibilities.

Have you ever wondered why God refers to homosexuals as effeminate (I Corinthians 6:9)? Why did Jesus berate those sitting up in "kings' houses" as seeking "soft" things (same word as effeminate)? Even in the world, people know subconsciously that a "soft" man or a "hard" woman are indicative of a homosexual spirit. When you masculinize a woman or feminize a man, you are preparing them to receive a full homosexual spirit.  This begins with a change in the inward man to become the opposite of what you were created to be.

Scripture has been provided showing clearly that women are not to be in positions of leadership or authority over men. I have also shown how this rebellion sows the seeds for the sodomite nature to grow into full manifestation (homosexuality).

The only question which remains is will you submit to the Word of God? 

There is no support for the assertion that God ordains women to be leaders over men. Those who insist otherwise are just in prideful rebellion against God as the Scriptures are plain.

God does not care about how we feel about His word, nor will He change His word to accommodate our preferences. When people do things outside of God's will, it is either a work of the flesh or of satan.

If one is not called by God, then one is not ministering on God's behalf. Any woman who is operating as a pastor is NOT in the truth. It is a false authority that God does not ordain and which actually stands against the things of God.

If we submit to God's word and follow His ways, THEN blessings will flow and life will be restored - both in ourselves and in His Body. While there is confusion and disorder, such evils and perversions will only continue to be prolonged.

Many people are not sent...they just went.  We should seek God for Scriptural understanding and spiritual discernment to know the difference.


  1. Good job. These are common things people say to try to justify why a woman should be in a position of leadership in church. It's a very common practice for women now a days name themselves co-pastors, along with their husband. It's sad that no one has the courage to reveal the truth.

  2. Excellent...this is an answer to prayer for me...thank you

  3. Ok. I have read through this entire series, and the one dealing with being upside down. So, does this mean I can not start a business or take a promotion at work because it would place me in authority over men? And that they were right to tell me I couldn't work with the audio visual equipment at church, that the only thing I could do was help in the kitchen because I was a girl (this happened when I was a freshman in college)?

  4. Hello Anonymous,

    If you read Proverbs 31, it is clear that she was an industrious business woman. Neither have I ever seen anything in Scripture limiting a women in church to kitchen detail. :-)

    I, of course, cannot dissect every situation someone has been in or every future possibility which may arise...nor would I want to. All I can say is that we should be seeking the Lord - and submitting to His word - in all things.

    Understanding and submitting to patriarchal authority is not about a woman shrinking her personality or hiding her talents. It is about a heart that respects (and does not rebel against) the order God has established. This is true even for Deborah herself, although she was appointed a judge of the people.

    So in terms of what to do in any situation, the answer remains the same: we must seek and obey God.

    Thanks for commenting.

  5. Glory to God! Woman of God & Truth, without truth you cannot be a True Woman of God.May the Holy Spirit continue to lead you into all truth.Your message edifies the body of Christ.Christs love compels us to speak boldly and with conviction.Thank you for your commitment to serve Christ in truth and love.

    God Bless!


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