True Power

True Power

Friday, July 30, 2010

Office of Deaconess

Many theolgians have debated if there is such an office of deaconess and if it is does it carry the same responsibilities as the office of deacon for a man. Pheobe is usually brought into this debate as many scholars deny she was a deaconess or in the position of pastor. There has come to the forefront documentation as to the office of deaconess being acknowledged by one of the apostles, Bartholomew.

"Jesus went up on a mountainside and called to him those he wanted and they came to him. He appointed twelve - designating them apostles - that they might be with him and that he might send them out to preachand to have authority to drive out demons. These are the twelve he appointed: Simon (to whom he gave the name Peter) James the son of Zebedee and his brother John (to them he gave the name Boanerges, which means Sons of Thunder) Andrew, Philip, Bartholomew, Matthew, Thomas, James son of Alphaeus, Thaddaeus, Simon the Zealot, and Judas Iscariot, who betrayed him." Mark 3:13-19.
From: Upcoming book - "When Will Eve Be Forgiven?"

Bartholomew, one of the twelve disciples, wrote protocol concerning ordination of a deaconess within the church.
CONCERNING THE DEACONESS – THE CONSTITUTION OF BARTHOLOMEW.

XIX. Concerning a deaconess, I Bartholomew, make this constitution: O bishop, thou shalt lay thy hands upon her in the presence of the presbytery, and of the deacons and deaconesses, and shalt say”



THE FORM OF PRAYER FOR THE ORDINATION OF A DEACONESS.

XX. O Eternal God, the Father of our Lord Jesus Christ, the Creator of man and of woman, who didst replenish with the Spirit Miriam, and Deborah, and Anna, and Huldah; who didst not disdain that Thy only begotten Son should be born of woman; who also in the tabernacle of the testimony, and in the temple, didst ordain women to be keepers of Thy holy gates, -- do Thou now also look down upon this Thy servant, who is to be ordained to the office of a deaconess, and grant her Thy Holy Spirit, and “cleanse her from all filthiness of flesh and spirit, that she may worthily discharge the work which is committed to her to Thy glory, and the praise of Thy Christ, with whom glory and adoration be to Thee and the Holy Spirit for ever. Amen. Ante-Nicene Fathers, Volume VII, Constitution of the Holy Apostles. Book VIII, Section III.

In the above writing one of the original 12 apostles wrote how a deaconess is to be ordained. High honor is given to the position of a woman as a creation of Christ. She is viewed as a fellow worker in the kingdom of God. I was very pleased to have run across such an account, not so much for the knowledge of a position in the church for women. But because there was a time in which they were seen as capable of being a servant along with men in the church.

Tuesday, July 27, 2010

Women are large and in charge

Founs this article and found it enlightening. I hope you will enjoy reading it as much as I did.

FEMALE PASTORS: The stained glass ceiling
by Galen Holley/NEMS Daily Journal

The Rev. Cheryl Penson had ben preaching up a whirlwind , but halfway through her sermon she paused and drew a deep breath.

Like a mother gathering her children, Penson seemed to pull the spirited words and expansive gestures that carried the first part of her sermon in toward her, compressing them into a warm, staccato whisper. She began speaking in a measured cadence, making sure every member of Lane Chapel Christian Methodist Episcopal Church could hear the point she was about to make.

“Mark, in his gospel, as does the Apostle, Paul, uses the body as a metaphor for the Christian community,” she said.

Just before she took the pulpit, Penson’s husband and co-pastor, the Rev. Charles Penson, prayed that God’s anointing would be upon her. “Like Yahweh’s blessing upon Aaron in the Old Testament,” he said, in a deferential, loving voice. As his wife preached, he handed her a towel, and the congregation clapped and waved their hands in recognition of the nuptial gesture.

Today in America there are twice as many women senior pastors as there were a decade ago. Women like Penson are providing capable leadership in many denominations, but females still haven’t assumed the larger pulpits in the same numbers as men.

According to the California-based research institute The Barna Group, one in 10 U.S. churches employs a female senior pastor. That’s a remarkable increase in a short time, considering that, until recently, women in the pulpit were an anomaly.

Those numbers are encouraging for people who see the issue of females in ministry as one of equality and justice, but even the optimists admit that women have a long way to go in terms of reaching parity with their male colleagues.

Mainline success

Despite decreasing membership and ongoing internal debates over social issues, mainline Protestant churches have opened new horizons for women in ministry in the second half of the 20th century.

Today, 58 percent of women ministers, as compared to only 23 percent of their male counterparts, work in mainline Protestant churches. Until recently, however, those women were mostly relegated to serving as associate pastors or as children’s or music ministers.

Among those churches with the longest-standing traditions of ordaining women is the Evangelical Lutheran Church in America which started almost 40 years. Today, two of the four female ELCA ministers in Mississippi are senior pastors.

The Episcopal Church has ordained women since 1976 and it is currently led by a woman, Presiding Bishop Katherine Jefferts Schori. Thirty percent of priests considered senior pastors in the Episcopal Diocese of Mississippi are women.

The Presbyterian Church USA started ordaining women in 1956 and over the past decade the number of women serving as ministers of word and sacrament within the church has increased by 75 percent to just under 1,200. Today, four women serve as senior pastors of PCUSA churches in the Magnolia State.

When the Rev. Sandra Sisson left homemaking to enter the seminary in 1983, she was afraid people would laugh at her. At that time female ministers in the PCUSA were still rare. Sisson eventually became the first female teaching elder ordained in the Presbytery of St. Andrews.

Sisson, who today pastors Okolona Presbyterian Church and First Presbyterian Church in Aberdeen, is convinced that women’s history of teaching religious education and directing ministries has paved the way for them taking over as lead pastors.

“Women were the primary educators for a century or more,” she said. “It just makes sense that we’d eventually start leading congregations.”

Mainline churches, like the PCUSA, are often criticized for being too liberal, and those who oppose women serving as senior pastors see it as another concession to contemporary culture.

However, one church with a conservative pedigree has ordained women as fully commissioned officers and assigned them as senior pastors since its inception. Women in 19th century England were instrumental in starting the Salvation Army.

Major Sue Dorman has been the ranking officer and senior pastor of the Tupelo Salvation Army for three years. In addition to her administrative duties, each week Dorman preaches and ministers to a congregation of around 80, as well as countless transients. The Salvation Army mostly utilizes husband and wife teams, but Dorman is the only single female serving as a senior pastor in the region that includes Mississippi, Alabama and Louisiana.

“There’s such a great need in the world today, both in terms of social justice work and in terms of preaching and spreading the gospel,” said Dorman. “We have to use every resource, every person we have, in order to succeed.”

Dorman believes women in ministry tend not to get hung up on issues of gender. As long as a person is able to do the job effectively, it doesn’t matter whether they’re male or female.

Small churches

Although female pastors have achieved unprecedented success, the Barna study showed they still haven’t taken the pulpits in the country’s largest churches. For example, Sisson’s two congregations, in Okolona and Aberdeen, are of small and moderate size.

Across denominations, churches led by male pastors average 103 adults at Sunday worship, compared to 81 for female pastors.

The United Methodist Church recently celebrated 50 years of ordaining female ministers, yet today only about one tenth of women shepherd the denomination’s largest churches.

Bishop Hope Morgan Ward, who became the first female bishop for the Mississippi Conference in 2004, said getting women into the senior clergy positions of the largest churches is the new frontier in building the kind of diverse church Methodists want.

The UMC recently launched the Lead Women Pastor Project which combines researching leadership styles and building mentoring relationships to try to figure out how to get women ministers into bigger churches.

Ward said the project makes sense given that over 50 percent of those enrolled in master of divinity programs at Methodist seminaries are women. That confirms findings from the Barna study which show that females in ministry are better educated than their male counterparts. Seventy-seven percent of female ministers earn a seminary degree, as opposed to 63 percent of men.

Although being relegated to smaller churches presents a glass ceiling for female senior pastors, Ward said that as young women see more females leading congregations it will create momentum and inspiration.

“I find that a church’s openness to accepting any minister is in direct proportion to the minister’s experience,” said Ward. “If there’s a minority or a female minister that people can see, it opens people’s eyes. We have so many people out there doing good work – so many women – and, as a result, I think resistance to accepting female ministers is decreasing.”



Minority experience

Black women are also taking the pulpits in greater numbers. Twenty-three percent of the congregations in Mississippi are historically black churches. That’s the highest percentage in the country. Female ministers in the black church are a fairly new phenomenon but their ascendancy represents an affirmation of the strong matriarchal currents that have always been present in the church.

Denominations like the African Methodist Episcopal Church have led the way in ordaining women as presiding elders and today almost 30 percent of AME ministers are women. In 2000 the AME Church elected its first female bishop, Vashti Murphy McKenzie.

The Christian Methodist Episcopal Church started ordaining women in 1976. Today, about 5 percent of senior ministers in the CME are women.

Penson and her husband at Lane Chapel shepherd the largest CME church in the area. She’s pleased with the progress her denomination is making, but she’d like to see her sisters elected to the highest positions in the church.

“We’re gaining new responsibilities all the time,” said Penson. “Right now we have to be faithful servants and stewards with the opportunities we have.”

Even women who stand outside the pale of possible ordination are finding inspiration in what they see as the long-overdue historical progress of female senior pastors.

In her office at St. Christopher Catholic Church in Pontotoc, Sr. Soledad Mendoza sat counseling a young Hispanic man who often comes to her for advice.

Fr. Tim Murphy didn’t hesitate to say that, in a very real sense, Mendoza is the shepherd of the sizable Hispanic community at St. Christopher. The Catholic Church doesn’t ordain women, and with so few priests in the area Murphy is hard pressed to keep up with everyone who needs his attention. As a result, Mendoza and women like her often perform many of the pastoral duties in taking care of a congregation. They’re providing a critical pastoral presence, particularly at smaller, Catholic mission churches that don’t have full-time priests. Some say they’re keeping rural communities alive.

Mendoza isn’t angry that she can’t be ordained, instead she takes heart that women are increasingly being seen as equals in ministry, and, like her, they’re taking the lead.

She walked out of the counseling room, whispering in Spanish, telling the young man that she’d be right back.

“This is a matter of justice – yes, I think it is,” said Mendoza. “This work is not easy, but women have gifts, as do men.” She smiled, and leaned forward. “Perhaps one day I would like to be a priest, too.”

Contact Daily Journal religion editor Galen Holley at 678-1510 or galen.holley@djournal.com

COMPLAINERS BEWARE


I have been posting for quite a while now. And I was wondering; do most of my posts contain complaining? I have gone on about one subject or the other, but I would not like to be considered as a person who complains alot.

Blogs and other forms of internet media allow the everyday person to get his thoughts and opinions off of their chest. In a world of anonymity, we can feel free to say whatever we like without reprecussions. I never wanted to be one who would write one thing and then hide from it.

While pondering if I were a complainer; I began to think about the Jews Moses led out of slavery from Egypt. They complained when they were slaves and complained when they were free. Do I have the complaining spirit of those led out of bondage in the Book of Exodus? I don't want to be a complainer. Well the next question must be asked: What kind of blogger do I want to be?

Well I would like to be encouraging, thought provoking, and humorous. With little feedback I hope I have accomplished a little of what I set out to do. I hope I have not just used this platform to grumble and moan about everything that is wrong in the world (my world). I hope I have said something that made someone say: "That was something new and different."

Anyway, I know with all of my complaining there is thankfulness. I am happy for all of you who have stopped by and checked me out. I am happy to soon have two of my manuscripts published. I am happy that I am getting a grip on how to use all of this technology. I am just thankful for you all out there.

Let me share a favorite passage of mine from the Bible that keeps me in balance at times:

There is a time for everything, and a season for every activity under heaven:
a time to be born and a time to die,
a time to plant and a time to uproot,
a time to kill and a time to heal,
a time to tear down and a time to build,
a time to weep and a time to laugh,
a time to mourn and a time to dance,
a time to scatter stones and a time to gather them,
a time to embrace and a time to refrain,
a time to search and a time to give up,
a time to keep and a time to throw away,
a time to tear and a time to mend,
a time to be silent and a time to speak,
a time to love and a time to hate,
a time to war and a time for peace. Ecclesiastes 3:1-8

So if I have been in a time of complaining I will definitely be in a time of cheering. Whatever your complaint is today----BEWARE---- you will also have a time of cheering.

Friday, July 23, 2010

The Devil Gets The Credit

I have a story for you.

After Hurricane Katrina many people who were not affected by the storm, claimed they were; getting boo-coo of food stamps. Going on food shopping sprees loading up their freezers and cabinets with all kinds of goodies. It was high times.

Fast forward a year and in the mail is a statement saying because of fraud all of the money would have to be paid back. A date for review of the case was set. Money or time in jail would be the outcome.

What does the person accused of foodstamp fraud do? Go to church and say the devil is busy - yall pray for me. After many prayer circles and prayer groups the person heard a message from God: "The devil will not be victorious. Everything is going to be alright."

Sure and satisfied God was with them, on the appointed day of the review, the person was shown leniency. Instead of paying back thousands of dollars, a mere $300 was the penalty. Rejoicing and praises to God were offered. And finally what has become a Christian idiom was said "What the devil meant for evil, God turned it to good."

During the whole ordeal I was dumbfounded. How did the devil become involved in this?
A person, a Christian person willfully chose to be deceptive and lie. Once caught the person ran to God to clean up a legal mess and to battle with the devil. Does anyone realize bad choices equal bad consequences?

Again, a person who goes to work and does the bare minimum their job requires, talks on the telephone all day, comes in late, and is not the most productive employee will declare the devil is busy if they are terminated.

Where is self reflection? Where is growth and change.

I told a cousin of mine how tired I was of hearing how busy the devil is. According to the Bible the devil does not have power or authority over Christians. Christians can speak to the devil, tell him to go, and he will flee. The devil it seems is not that occupied with people that already serve him, so where exactly and with whom is the devil busy with? She was appauled at my statement. "The devil IS busy! He is always up to something."

The devil is busy. But he is getting too much credit for our human busy-ness. We do alot of things without any nudging from the devil because it has become a part of our daily living. If he can be blamed for everything then we have no need to try to do what is right.

There are bad things that happen for no other apparent reason than it had to be from evil, but there are a lot of things we set in motion ourselves. Temptation is everywhere but choice comes from within.

As I looked at my cousin when she said she believed the devil was busy, I could see she honestly believed it. We have to have an enemy to blame our pains on or we would have to come to the realization that we are sometimes the enemy of ourselves. It is easier to get compassion from others if there is a common enemy. Would we actually admit to another that we are responsible for some of our bad situations? But that is exactly what God wants us to do. Reflect on our own behavior and strive to change it for the better.

The devil knows and is happy he gets blamed for everything because we will have no reason to change. Genesis stated he was the craftiest of all creatures. He has no problem taking the credit for bad as long as you continue with the bad instead of saying "GET THEE BEHIND ME SATAN."

Thursday, July 22, 2010

Facebook Frienemies

I didn't want to, but I was forced to come into the 21st century four months ago and join the facebook world.

As an author constantly on the lookout for new topics and inspiration for my writing, I needed to expand my resources; so I joined facebook.

The first day of friending and reading I HATED FACEBOOK and could not understand why anyone would be a part of such a community.

There was a lot of cursing, praying, farm life news (the game I guess), and business sharing. I poked around and read some profiles and discovered people really enjoy describing themselves in the utmost positive light. There were several people who enjoyed various activities, open minded, and fun loving. These people seemed very interesting in their likes and dislikes. One would believe the world is full of beautiful people doing beautiful things at all times.

Of course the picture albums with the standard booty poses and thug love poses can't be beat. People are living it up on facebook. They eat, they drink, they are sad and sick, but most of all they like what others have to say.

I DID NOT LIKE FACEBOOK --- AT FIRST.

After about a week I became drawn into "what will they post next?" Was it going to be "I am so full," "I am blessed," "haterz hating today," or a wonderful new happy picture? I was on a high because I got to peruse over people's lives and loves. It became a secret addiction. I personally do not have anything I want to share that much, but I do comment here and there.

I feel a little happy for all of the people enjoying their lives and making connections with others. With life filled with so much stress you can unwind and enjoy someone elses good day. There is always someone with a word of wisdom or encouragement, or a partial sermon sprinkled in. It's like reality t.v. on asmaller scale.

I only have a few facebook friends. One of my daughters has over 500 friends, how and why I do not know. I have been sent a bouquet of flowers for Mother's Day and have taken a quiz or two.

Not too long ago I sent out requests for people to friend me. South Park did a spoof on a kid without any facebook friends and how sad he was. I did not know anything about facebook at the time so I was out of the loop on the joke. Now I am the kid without a lot of facebook firends. My kids say it is because I am too old. I can't believe I am at that time in my life when I can be considered too old for something. So there is age descrimination on facebook I guess. But I have no interest to friend those cursing kids with their secret language codes.But exactly how many friends are enough on facebook anyway?

But as with all love relationships, the thrill is waning. I don't get the rush like I did before. I do not like arguing social or political issues; also add religious issues. Some things are too private even for facebook. I have joined many wonderful writing groups, geneaology gruops and religious groups. But I do not rush to facebbok to read and look at the photo albums anymore.

I guess I am a fickle friend. Now my facebook activity is more related to my career endeavours. I mean if I could max out and have 5,000 friends I would have a large vein for resource and research.

So, am I a friend or enemy of Facebook? I guess we are FRIENEMIES.

Wednesday, July 21, 2010

Shirley Sherrod Should Sue!!!

I try to stay away from extreme controversial political issues. But I could not sleep last night after this woman was accused of racism.

Over and over again the edited tape was played fanning the flames of racism: BLACK WOMAN HATES WHITES.

Consequently she lost her job and everyone is blaming the other. I say SUE!!!! I've watched enough of Judge Judy to know she has a case of libel. This woman's reputation was harmed and she lost her job.

When I was young I trusted the news. When I became an adult, I became a little more cautious about what was reported but I knew it would not be an out and out lie. Now, it is one news organization beating up on another news organization and saying whatever the demographic wants to hear and they eat it up. Is there any wonder the Bible said the people will be fooled by a false messiah? The masses are fooled by everyone as long as they think and say what they want to hear.

I now listen to BBC and other countries to tell me about my own country and NO I don't trust them either, but I want to know how the rest of the world is viewing our stupidity.

Once a great nation now a pack of wolves devouring ourselves as other nations look on. We hate each other plain and simple. We will not survive long and everyone but America knows it.

America use to go to the rescue of other nations mistreating their countrymen. Now, several nations have signed on with Mexico against Arizona's immigration stance. We use to go on missionary trips to evangelize other countries. Now, other countries come to the U.S. in missionary efforts.

WAKE UP PEOPLE. I use to love Fox News, now I am sad for them and feel shame as they plug their political agenda for the day. Their dignity has been sold. It is a hate station now, not news. It has never been "news" that people dislike minorities and a new minority is bar-b-qued each day.

The liberal networks have to keep up with them by dismissing everything they report which is like high shcool kids fighting and gossiping. Where do real people go for what is actually happening in the U.S. with no political agenda.

GROW UP PEOPLE. You are creating a nation of angry, bitter people. It does take the eye off individual lives but this garbage that is suppose to be news is depressing. Does everyone get up in the morning wanting to fight?

SUE SUE SUE SUE SUE!!!!!

Stop the slander of people. Show that we can be a Christian nation again. Who is benefiting from all of this. There are some people getting rich and they are not the fired up listeners.

Sorry if you do not share my views and I know I spoke against the God Like Fox News. Remember, we are all humans wanting to live in some kind of peace. Turn away from all of this ugliness.

Tuesday, July 20, 2010

Christian Women and Depression


I live in a small rural community. On every corner there is a church. For every large family group there is a church that goes back from generation to generation. Everyone knows the family you belong to if not you personally. It is a die hard Christian community.

There is a secret though. Look into the eyes of the many God fearing women and you will noticed fixed dialated pupils. The majority of the women 30 and over are on antidepressants. After 29, it is pretty much standard proceedure to be prescribed something for depression.

With such a large Christian population it would seem there is no time for sadness for the saved. The women follow the Proverbs account of a Godly woman. Most teach the little ones in Sunday school and the rest reveling in being a great southern cook. Butttttttttt.

In small groups away from the Christian man, there are whispers of discontent mingled with the fear of missing heaven. Anger turned inward is depression. the inability to say what's on your mind builds. I was privy to a post of a woman who was a part of the quiverful movement and she said she was a closet alcoholic. Her inability or the overwhelming demand of being the perfect Christian wife, mother, and woman left her to find solace in being absent in life through drinking.

Can the demands of being a Godly Christian woman be leading to the large amount of antidepressants being prescribed for these women. In Utah, there is a high incidence of antidepressant use by those women of the Mormon faith. Is there a link? Statistics indicate that 11 percent of women and 5 percent of men who are taking antidepressants. I believe that total is low. Are Christian women trying to just get through their Christian lives?

Surveys of alcohol use among African Americans point to the positive relationship between religious participation and abstaining from alcohol, for both women and men (Caetano and Herd 1984; Herd 1988; Herd and Grube 1996). A strong commitment to religious values and church participation has been a significant component of family life for many African Americans. As the central pillar supporting the African American community, the black church provides spiritual, social, emotional, and economic resources (Lincoln and Mamiya 1990). Most African Americans are affiliated with Baptist denominations, which are characterized by a lack of tolerance for consuming alcohol (Herd 1996). In addition, African American women participate in religious activities to a higher degree than African American men (Taylor et al. 1999). Their high rate of abstention is consistent with the norms of their religious denominations. Thus, African American women’s level of religious participation may serve a protective function, buffering them from higher rates of alcohol use.

Well, alcohol is a no-no for Christians, but, antidepressants are more acceptable. PLEASE do not take from this post that those needing medical help for depression and other mental illnesses should not seek help. PLEASE always seek help for any emotional difficulties you may be going through. But many women within the Christian community may be using antidepressants just to make it through an existence that would cause any person to become depressed "being a superwoman."

Being able to talk about life as a Christian woman and all it entails should be a natural part of the Christian experience before it leads to alcoholism and other drug addictions.

Be a part of the solution and not a part of the problem.

Monday, July 19, 2010

I Timothy 2:9-15 The Answer is not Childbirth Part 3

Continuation of Part 2 (The Response)

A woman fearful of where she would spend eternity asked a pastor the following question:

"Having been raised in Churches of Christ, I am having a hard time breaking away from a works-based attitude into one more grace-based. I just can’t seem to break free of this constant fear for my salvation based on the fact that I am not following perfectly each and every verse in the New Testament. For example --- I am now an older woman. My husband and I never wanted our own children for many reasons. However, now, when I read the verse about women being saved through childbirth, my heart aches over the thought that this decision of mine may be one which keeps me out of Heaven. It was a willful choice on my part not to have children, and my heart actually hurts when I contemplate where my decision may be sending me when I die, and so I lie awake at night! …any insight or help you can offer me would be very much appreciated!"

The Answer:

“Does Paul literally mean a woman can be saved by childbirth?” The pastor answers the inquiring woman that if the statement in I Timothy 2:15, if followed literally, would be a work-based theology, that would discount the realities of God’s grace, and a woman’s faith.

For Biblical conformation let's look at Ephesians 2:8-9: “For by grace you have been saved through faith; and that not of yourselves, it is the gift of God; not as a result of works, that no one should boast.” The pastor consuls the woman not to be fearful of her salvation. The ultimate redemption of mankind is by faith in and acceptance of the Lord Jesus Christ.

I bring to this discussion the point that in the account of the fall, God prophesied at the time, the seed of the woman would crush the head of the serpent that deceived her. Therefore, through the birth of a child would come salvation, which we have come to know as Jesus Christ. Jesus would cover all sin even to that of the Garden of Eden. If Paul truly believed a woman could receive salvation through childbirth, why would he have urged the unmarried and widows to remain virgins or to remain single as he did in I Corinthians 7. It is then clear, in reference to this chapter, that a woman’s salvation was not conditioned upon her bearing of children.

What a biblical response to the woman who posed the question earlier to the pastor; that her salvation is in Jesus Christ. I have been in several classes during my religious academic experience where the question of whether to “have” or “not to have” children has been raised. In a Marriage and Family class, the identical question was posed to the class, “Can a woman be a Christian if she does not have any children?” The answer given by the instructor was a resounding "no" based on the Genesis instruction to “be fruitful and multiply.”

The instructor stated the Christian would be acting contrary to the will of God for the earth to be populated and subdued by man. Following this logic of thought, one of my classmates asked “How many children fill the criteria of being fruitful and multiplied?” The instructor began to spout the philosophy of man having been endowed with common sense and thus has the intelligence to know how many children that can be cared for by the couple. It would be lacking “wisdom” if a couple had more children than could be cared for. The class found this to be profound and acceptable answer.

When an outside entity can determine one’s salvation by whether one has children or not is a scary concept. When someone can tell an individual the number of children that is acceptable before one crosses over into negligence in the care of children is obscene. Who has become the judge in life, God or man? I could not let this topic slide without challenging the “be a wise Christian statement.” It seems one must have at least one child to be considered a Christian and less than a “brood” of children to be considered a wise Christian. How presumptuous!

In my humble and ever expanding knowledge of the creation of man and woman, after God had created each he said that it was “good.” We are a perfect creation; all God wanted us to be. We can breathe without having to think about it every second of our lives. Our heart beats without our having to wind it up daily. Our blood courses through our veins without any assistance from the individual. God made our body to function in autonomy to our conscious minds. He created a “perfect” creation. He gave the food laws found in the Old Testament to keep the body operating flawlessly. Even though we no longer follow the food laws, this doesn’t negate the fact the creator of the body gave maintenance instructions for the body. And when it came to reproduction, God in his infinite wisdom gave the male and female body individual start and stop times for reproduction.

The female body is on a different timeline for reproduction than the male’s body. For some reason, God decided a man would be able to procreate longer and later into his life than a woman is able to procreate in her lifetime. The female reproductive years begin with menses and ends with menopause; God’s own start and stop time. Are we wiser than God, knowing how long our fertility should last? Are we more so able to care for our family than God? What is the message we as Christians are sending the world about our faith in God when we say he is not able to provide for me and mine? Are we wise with our 2.5 children or are we out of the will of God? If we consider ourselves wise, limiting the number of children we choose to have, then isn’t the person who chooses to have “zero” children wiser?

The point of a woman being saved through childbirth was not a throw away statement. To fully understand why and what Paul meant by the statement takes the seeking Christitan to delve into the passage. There were serious goddess worship occuring at that time which elevated woman and her ability to reproduce to god-like status. Paul had to counter this culture and elevate man and thus Jesus to the highest posiotion. the role of childbirth had to be minimized if Paul were to be successful in his evangelistic efforts.

To learn more on this topic purchase my book When Will Eve Be Forgiven? release date by September 2010.

I have hermenuetically dissected 1 Timothy 2:9-15 in an effort to refute the ideology of woman being too treacherous to be over men in 3 parts. I hope I have demonstrated a biblical case to the reader which will encourage you to continue your study on the subject and to be able to present a well informed case for women in ministry.

Friday, July 16, 2010

Good Woman, Good Christian Woman

With the reality show starring the Duggards, the ordinary person gets a first hand view of the daily life of a couple living the Quiver Full life style. To say they portray a happy Christian couple is an understatement. They are absolutely joyful with their life style.

The house is brimming full of happy well, adjusted kids. The home seems to overflow with love. Whether mother's belly is extended with the next addittion to the family or not, she seems to live a life of contentment. Her contentment comes from being married to a Godly man and fulfilling her role as a woman.

What about the other unhappy, unfulfilled Christian women with their scant brood of one or two children. Are they missing out on the ultimate intimate relationship with God? With antidepressants being prescribed in record numbers, can the answer be fulfilling God's command to multiply? The Quiver Full Movement would have one believe that there is not only joy in replenishing the earth but a duty.

Quiverfull is a movement among conservative evangelical Christian couples chiefly in the United States, but with some adherents in Canada,Australia, New Zealand, England and elsewhere.It promotes procreation, and sees children as a blessing from God, eschewing all forms of birth control, including natural family planning and sterilization. Adherents are known as "quiver full", "full quiver", "quiverfull-minded", or simply "QF" Christians. Some refer to the Quiverfull position as Providentialism, while other sources have referred to it as a manifestation of natalism. Currently several thousand Christians worldwide identify with this movement. It began to receive significant attention in the U.S. national press in 2004.

Quiverfull authors and adherents express their core motivation as a desire to obey God's commands as stated in the Bible. Among these commands, "be fruitful and multiply" (Genesis 1:22; 9:7), "behold, children are a gift of the Lord" (Psalm 127:3), and passages showing God acting to open and close the womb (Genesis 20:18, 29:31, 30:22; 1 Samuel 1:5-6; Isaiah 66:9) are interpreted as giving basis for their view. Quiverfull adherents typically maintain that their philosophy is first about an open, accepting and obedient attitude toward the possibility of birthing children. Within the view, this attitude may result in many, few or even no children, because God Himself maintains sole provenance over conception and birth. The duty of the Quiverfull adherent is only to maintain an "open willingness" to joyfully receive and not thwart however many children God chooses to bestow. Contraception in all its forms is seen as inconsistent with this attitude and is thus entirely avoided, as is abortion.

Quiverfull's principal authors and its adherents also describe their motivation as a missionary effort to raise up many Christian children to affect the world for the cause of the Christian religion. Its distinguishing viewpoint is to eagerly receive children as blessings from God.

Quiverfull authors and adherents advocate for and seek to model a return to Biblical Patriarchy. Mary Pride recently distanced herself from the patriarchy movement in an article for Practical Homeschooling. In her article, she clearly stated her disapproval of the movement, and sets the record straight that she should not be considered a founder of it. Citation: http://www.home-school.com/Articles/phs89-marypride.html

Quiverfull authors typically organize family governance with the mother as a homemaker under the authority of her husband with the children under the authority of both. Parents seek to largely shelter their children from aspects of culture they as parents deem adversarial to their religious beliefs. Additionally, Quiverfull families strongly incline toward homeschooling and toward homesteading in a rural area. However, exceptions exist in substantial enough proportion that these latter two items are general and often idealized correlates to Quiverfull practices and not integral parts of them.

I believe there is nothing wrong with this choice and that God probably favors it. The problem on arises when a woman is demeaned for not being a person who is willing to have several children. The Bible speaks of not trying to avoid having children. The best way for Christianity to spread or be maintained is through the birth of more Christians. But, it should still be a choice. God commands us to do certain things as his children. But, throughout the Bible we see outstanding righteous people fall short in regards to following God's command. They repent and try to move forward and follow God, but the point is that they can fall short of perfection. It is God's love that enables them to get back on the right path.

Some women are harmed in rigid procreation attempts and get lost in the submission of men until their God created selves are lost. It is the danger of not being a functioning intity that is a cause for caution.

Quiver Full women are doing what they believe is right in regard to their religious beliefs and should not be harshly ridiculed, especially if they are happy and content. Likewise, women who do not choose to have several children should not be ostracized as sinful. God does give different ministries to different people as he sees fit. If a woman is not blessed with children she still can have a relationship with God not based on procreation.

Having several children or no children should not be the divide among Christian women.

Wednesday, July 14, 2010

1 Timothy 2:9-15 Salvation Through Birth?????

“I also want women to dress modestly, with decency and propriety, not with braided hair or gold or pearls or expensive clothes, but with good deeds, appropriate for women who profess to worship God. A woman should learn in quietness and full submission. I do not permit a woman to teach or to have authority over a man; she must be silent. For Adam was formed first, then Eve. And Adam was not the one deceived; it was the woman who was deceived and became a sinner. But women, will be saved through childbearing—if they continue in faith, love, and holiness with propriety.”


The Quiver Full Movement encourages women to embrace their role of child bearer and mother. They add to this dignified position their extraordianry faith, love for all and holiness demonstrated through purity, piety, modest demeanor and dress. There is also a movement which includes women who no longer believe in the Quiver Full Movment called "No Longer Quivering." This group looks at and challenges this idea of the fulfilled Christian mother as only child bearer.

If woman is to be forever cursed by Eve's disobedience and her order of creation; I think all who adhere to this notion should thoroughly search the Scripture for complete understanding. Is a woman saved by childbirth from the ongoing condemnation of Eve's original sin? And if so, where does the crucified Christ come into play in the salvation of women?

(Below excerpts from manuscript: When Will Eve Be Forgiven?)

What does the Bible say about the importance of having children? One of the first commands given to both the man and the woman was to be fruitful and to multiply found in Genesis 1:28: “God blessed them and said to them, “Be fruitful and increase in number, fill the earth and subdue it. Rule over the fish of the sea and the birds of the air and over every living creature that moves on the ground.” It is clear God intended for man and woman to reproduce, but we do not have any spoken stipulation in regards to not reproducing as being a sin.

When we look at Psalms 127:3-5 we can see with even more clarity the opinion of God in relation to having children through the words of David: “Sons are a heritage from the Lord, children a reward from him. Like arrows in the hands of a warrior are sons born in one’s youth. Blessed is the man whose quiver is full of them. They will not be put to shame when they contend with their enemies in the gate.”

We must begin with I Timothy 2:9-15 to try and decipher how Eve/woman can be forgiven. Paul states that through childbearing if they continue through faith, love, and holiness with propriety the woman can be saved. Was Paul truly saying a woman can be redeemed from her sin of being deceived in the Garden of Eden through childbirth? Paul, being an apostle of Jesus Christ fully knew the price Jesus paid for forgiveness of man that will be discussed in chapter ten. So what exactly was Paul stating woman could be “saved” from?

In the entire Bible, the Greek word for “saved” sozo (sode-zo) means to deliver or protect (lit. or fig.):- save (93x), make whole (9x), heal (3x), be whole (2x), misc. (3x) = preserve, do well. To “save” is used (as with the noun soteria, ‘salvation’) (1) of material and temporal deliverance and (1a) to save from danger and suffering etc., each use can be applied to the word saved in I Timothy 2:15. The word “saved” is used 57 times in the New Testament. Of the 57 times the word “saved” is used, 55 times out of the 57, the word has the same meaning.

In an article by Stanley E. Porter, he concludes the author of I Timothy apparently believed that for the woman who abides in faith, love and holiness, her salvation will come by the bearing of children. What importance did childbearing play in the life of the Christian woman? Were women with children viewed as less sinful than women without children?


In an article published in Salvation Through Childbirth, A Reflective Analysis of 1 Timothy 2:15, Mr. Maxey addresses a question asked by a woman:

“Brother Maxey,

Having been raised in Churches of Christ, I am having a hard time breaking away from a works-based attitude into one more grace-based. I just can’t seem to break free of this constant fear for my salvation based on the fact that I am not following perfectly each and every verse in the New Testament. For example --- I am now an older woman. My husband and I never wanted our own children for many reasons. However, now, when I read the verse about women being saved through childbirth, my heart aches over the thought that this decision of mine may be one which keeps me out of Heaven. It was a willful choice on my part not to have children, and my heart actually hurts when I contemplate where my decision may be sending me when I die, and so I lie awake at night! …any insight or help you can offer me would be very much appreciated!

This is a powerful letter to say the least. Before I write the response given by Mr. Massey to this question, I would like to look at the churches obedience to the command to be fruitful and multiply and how many Christian women are resting their salvation on childbirth.

There are many women who are Christians. I have discussed in previous blogs that women outnumber men in the Christian faith. For Christian men and women who live by the verses in 1 Timothy 2:9-15, here are statistics to the contrary.

It would be truly wonderful to live in a Christian nation that practiced what was preached, but this is not the case. Roman Catholic women have abortions at a significantly higher rate than Protestants. In 1996, about 57% of women who received legal abortions were white. The abortion rate was 55.5 per 100 live births for black women, 20.2 for white women, and 36 for women of other races.

In the Alan Guttmacher Institute it was reported in 2001 – July, 37.4% of all abortions are performed on Protestant women; 18% of all abortions are done on born-again Protestants. The survey goes on to say “born-again” believers constitute about 30% of the American adult population. The abortion index by religion during 1994-1995 was found to be: Protestants 0.69, followers of a non-Judeo-Christian religion 0.78, Catholics 1.01%, Jews 1.08, and persons who do not follow an organized religion 4.02. This information was prepared by Roper Center for Public Opinion Research, Storrs, CT, in 1995 from five Gallop polls. By these statistics alone, it is evident the limitation of conception is practiced by many Christians.

Continuing a 12-year decline, the U.S birth rate has dropped to the lowest level since national data has been available, according to statistics released by the Center for Disease Control (CDC). The birth rate among women of peak childbearing age has been declining. Birth rates for women in their 20’s and early 30’s were generally down while births to older mothers (35-44) were still on the rise. Rates were stable for women over 45.

In 2002, there were 4,019,280 births in the U.S., down slightly from 2001 (4, 025,933). More than one-third of all births were to unmarried women. WebMD reports there is now a new baby boom. The birth rate increased by 3% to 4.26 million between 2005 and 2006, the largest single-year increase since 1989 and the largest total number of births since 1961 which was one of the last years of the baby boom. Birth rates rose by 4% among women between the ages of 20 and 24, to 105 births per 1,000 and by 3% among those aged 40-44, to 9.4 births per 1,000. Families are now made up of more than one or two children; the ideal number of children per family seems to be three. The 1.6 million births among unmarried women represent an 8% increase over 2005 and is 20% higher than the recent low point for births in the group seen in 2002

Monday, July 12, 2010

I Timothy 2:9-15: Women, study the word thoroughly Part 1.


From my manuscript: When Will Eve Be Forgiven?
I Timothy 2:9-15:

“I also want women to dress modestly, with decency and propriety, not with braided hair or gold or pearls or expensive clothes, but with good deeds, appropriate for women who profess to worship God. A woman should learn in quietness and full submission. I do not permit a woman to teach or to have authority over a man; she must be silent. For Adam was formed first, then Eve. And Adam was not the one deceived; it was the woman who was deceived and became a sinner. But women, will be saved through childbearing—if they continue in faith, love, and holiness with propriety.”

The King James Version, which uses different terminology than the NIV states a woman is not to “usurp authority” over a man.

The word “usurp” is used only once in the entire Bible in I Timothy 2:12. It is a Greek word authenteo (aw-than-the-o) which means to act of oneself, i.e. (fig) dominate. It means “to exercise authority on one’s own account, to domineer over.” The word “authority” as it is used in the verse, does not have its own definition. The word “authority” and “usurp” are used interchangeably.

Within the New Testament there are six uses, with definitions, of the word “authority.” Various definitions of authority include: a ruler or officer of great authority, mighty, Potentate (a high officer), in the sense of ability, privilege, force, capacity, competency, freedom, mastery, delegated influence, power, authority, right, liberty, jurisdiction, strength, to control, bring under the power of, have power of, commandment, an injunction or a decree, to have full privilege over, prominence, superiority, and excellency.

Of all of the above definitions, none were sufficient or able to define what God meant by a woman having “authority” over a man. If we are to understand Scripture we must allow the Scriptures to speak for itself. The word “usurp” means the woman should not act or teach a man on her own behalf. She is not to exercise authority of a man on her behalf. I find this to be sound advice for any teacher. Males should not teach males on their own behalf. Adults should not teach children on their own behalf. We teach the Gospel on behalf of God, Jesus Christ, Holy Spirit, and those that are lost. Teaching the Word of God has nothing to do with exercising our authority over another on our own behalf. Can anyone disagree with putting oneself secondary to the Word of God?

The use of the word "or" between teaching and usurp authority should also be taken into account. What soes the conjunction "or" Mean?
a. To suggest that only one possibility can be realized, excluding one or the other: "You can study hard for this exam or you can fail."
b. To suggest the inclusive combination of alternatives: "We can broil chicken on the grill tonight, or we can just eat leftovers.
c. To suggest a refinement of the first clause: "Smith College is the premier all-women's college in the country, or so it seems to most Smith College alumnae."
d. To suggest a restatement or "correction" of the first part of the sentence: "There are no rattlesnakes in this canyon, or so our guide tells us."
e. To suggest a negative condition: "The New Hampshire state motto is the rather grim "Live free or die."
f. To suggest a negative alternative without the use of an imperative (see use of and above): "They must approve his political style or they wouldn't keep electing him mayor."
If example "c" is applied a woman will not wrestle control from a man for her own good to teach them as in teaching a corrupt doctrine. So, a woman should not forced teach or authority of a man. Simple huh!

One may say the need to address the issue of a woman being silent should come before any discussion about a woman teaching a man. Well, what did Paul mean by the statement “a woman needs to be silent and submissive in the church?”

The complete verse (34) reads as follows: “women should remain silent in the churches. They are not allowed to speak, but must be in submission, as the Law says (NIV has “law” capitalized)” In my religious studies, one of the first things I learned is when the word law is capitalized as in Law, the Law of Moses is the law being addressed. During the missionary journeys of Paul, Christians were no longer under the Law of Moses, but under the teachings of Jesus.

The usage of the Greek word nomos (nom-os) means law (through the idea of prescriptive usage), gen. (regulation), spec. (of Moses) or fig. (a principle) law. We must ask to which law Paul was referring. Was he speaking about Roman law, the Law of Moses, or an understood law of the Gospel?

In Paul’s educational background, he studied with a leading teacher of his time named Gamaliel, the son of a top Jewish scholar, Hillel. He was quite familiar with the laws of Moses. Paul described himself as a zealous person when it came to honoring God. Can Paul’s statement in regards to women come from his prior education? Was Paul privy to Jesus sending the first missionary woman at the well to spread the news regarding the living water? And how can we reconcile Paul’s treatment of Phoebe and the honor he showed to her in his writings?

The bigger question is the statement Paul made in regards to Eve. Women must not be in positions of authority due to the fact of Eve being deceived first and also due to the fact she was formed second. Did Paul consider Eve of less importance because she was created after the man, Adam?

The main question we should ask ourselves is do we believe that God, in the totality of his revealed nature in Scripture, view all women on the basis of Eve’s sin as Paul suggests? What role did Jesus’ birth, life, ministry, death, and resurrection play in the forgiveness of Eve in the eyes of man? Did Paul really mean a woman could be saved from the sins of Eve in bearing children as stated in I Timothy 2:15? Does the act of giving birth redeem the woman? What happens to the woman who does not have any children?

Stayed tuned for part 2 of this discussion on how childbirth could save a woman as Paul suggests in Scripture.

Saturday, July 10, 2010

I NEED YOUR HELP!

Hello to all who found my blog by choice or accident.

I need followers and imput to keep me encouraged as I blog and write new books. I get most of my inspiration from feedback from my posts. I am happy withthe amount of traffic I have been receiving but a little disappointed in so few followers. I would appreciate questions or topics you would like researched. It's simple to become one of my followers; just click on the followers icon. Help me to have 100 followers by December.

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I need your help in launching a new facebook group:PEOPLE AGAINST MISREPRESENTING GOD

Help me to find 100 friends by December 1, 2010!!!!
Suggest this cite to your friends or anyone you think may be interested.

Thank you all in advance and I look forward to hearing from you.

Sarah Palin, Hillary Clinton, Oprah Winfrey, Supreme Court Justices fit to lead.

There is no argument women are qualified to lead in any position they choose outside of the church with success. In the recent years there has been what many may deem as the "dawning of the age of the woman." Women are leading in politics and political positions in almost a take over fashion.

Any one of the above named women could draw a diverse audience to a speaking engagement and I dare say to a Bible study group. Men would not object if Sarah Palin taught them a Scripture or two.

So the question is not about the ability of women to teach, but not teaching men. In my next post I will tackle the most quoted of all Bible versus against women teaching men (1 Timothy 2:12 "I do not permit a woman to teach or have AUTHORITY over a man; she must remain silent) and break it down piece by piece so be ready.

The early church fathers, great ponderers of theology and doctrine, had much to say about women in their attempt to define the role of women in creation and religion. In the fifth century Augustine pondered Eve's(woman's)role and reflected on what kind of help she was suppose to be to Adam (man) in "Literal Commentary on Genesis." He states:

"If it were not the case that the woman was created to be man's helper specifically for the procreation of children, then why would she have been created as a helper? (Gen. 2:18). Was it so that she might work the land with him? No, because there did not yet exist any such labor for which he needed a helper, and even if such work had been required, a male would have made a better assistant. One can also posit that the reason for her creation as a helper had to do with the companionship she could provide for the man, if perhaps he got bored with his solitude. Yet for company and conversation, how much more agreeable it is for two male friends to dwell together than for a man and a woman!...I cannot think of any other reason for woman's being made as man's helper, if we dismiss the reason of procreation."
From "Women in the Early Church." Collegeville: The Liturgical Press, 1983, 28-29.

As great as Augustine was, he failed to realize that it was not until after the original sin of the snake, Adam, and Eve that we are told Adam knew his wife (Gen. 4:1 "And Adam knew Eve his wife; and she conceived and bare Cain and said, I have gotten a man from the Lord.")

If Adam and Eve had sex before eating of the tree it would seem they would have not been shocked to know they were naked and try to hide their genitals (Gen.3:7 "and the eyes of them both were opened, and they knew they were naked and they sewed fig leaves together, and made themselves aprons.") The knowledge they obtained from eating from the tree was the knowledge of their nakedness and shame from being naked.

The awareness of sexual organs (Sex) seems to be the original sin immediately followed by shame. From that point onward women have been portrayed as wicked seductresses, even though it took a whole conversation for the snake to convince Eve to partake of the tree and Eve just said "eat this" to Adam and he did and then blamed God for giving him the woman in the first place.

Satan pulled off the greatest trick ever in the Garden of Eden that day. He got man to turn his focus off of the true enemy--the serpent (Satan) and focus on the Woman; making her the enemy instead of himself. We cannot continue to forget who the true enemy of man is--Satan.

How do we reconcile what Paul said in the book of Timothy then about women teaching men? STAY TUNED.

Friday, July 9, 2010

Christian women lead the way

Gender differences: http://www.religioustolerance.org/chr_prac2.htm
Source for great statistics
The ratio of females to males who identify with different faith groups varies over a wide ratio. Only 38 or 39% of Seventh-Day Adventists, Buddhists, and Muslims are women; 55% or more of the persons identifying with the Episcopalian, Methodist, Pentecostal, or Presbyterian denominations are female.

This statistic shows that more women are Christians than men. We can look at gathered congregations on Sunday's and come up with a larger ratio then the one quoted above. This FACT continues to bring to the forefront: Should women be ministers? The argument against women ministers continue.

The statement below is from: www.gotquestions.org.women-pastors.html

Many women excel in gifts of hospitality, mercy, teaching, and helps. Much of the ministry of the local church depends on women. Women in the church are not restricted from public praying or prophesying (1 Corinthians 11:5), only from having spiritual teaching authority over men. The Bible nowhere restricts women from exercising the gifts of the Holy Spirit (1 Corinthians 12). Women, just as much as men, are called to minister to others, to demonstrate the fruit of the Spirit (Galatians 5:22-23), and to proclaim the gospel to the lost (Matthew 28:18-20; Acts 1:8; 1 Peter 3:15).

God has ordained that only men are to serve in positions of spiritual teaching authority in the church. This is not because men are necessarily better teachers, or because women are inferior or less intelligent (which is not the case). It is simply the way God designed the church to function. Men are to set the example in spiritual leadership—in their lives and through their words. Women are to take a less authoritative role. Women are encouraged to teach other women (Titus 2:3-5). The Bible also does not restrict women from teaching children. The only activity women are restricted from is teaching men or having spiritual authority over them. This logically would preclude women from serving as pastors/preachers. This does not make women less important, by any means, but rather gives them a ministry focus more in agreement with God’s plan and His gifting of them.

Should the church fail and Christianity be lost if the male population continues to decline in their attendance and faithfullness to the church? If nothing else, hopefully the presence of women in the pulpit will spur men to take their God given position within the church.

Thursday, July 8, 2010

Are Women Pastors Going To Hell?


O.K. people. The genie is out of the bottle. There are tons of women already in the pastor position and yes they have won many souls for Christ. What should happen to those who were led to Christ by a woman? Does their soul remain unsaved because a man did not witness and bring them to Christ and instruct them in the ways of the Lord. Will there be one line for those taught by men and one line for those taught by men? Is the Gospel irrelevant if it is taught by a woman? Timothy was taught by women his mother and grandmother. Paul benefitted from having a young learned man ready to teach others because he was first taught by women. Where was Timothy's father in the equation? Why didn't another man rush in to teach this young man?

Women are usually relegated to teach children, but men take responsibilty later for their salvation. So women are allowed to do the prep work only? We have heard the saying "The hand that rocks the cradle rules the world."

I ran across an article that asked the question whether women pastors would go to hell. Here is the answer.

If a woman is a pastor does that mean she is going to hell?
http://www.carm.org/apologetics/womens-issues/if-woman-pastor-does-mean-she-going-hell
by Matt Slick

If a woman is a pastor it does not mean she's going to hell. She is in sin, but it is not a sin that leads to damnation. The essentials of the faith that define our faith and form the boundaries of which a person is excluded from the faith does not include the issue of women being pastors and elders.
The elder, which is what a pastor is, is to be husband of one wife. Literally in the Greek it says, “a man of one woman,” (Titus 1:5-6). So, the elder is to be a man, not a woman. This is not culturally based because Paul clearly tells us in 1 Tim. 2:12-13, “but I do not allow a woman to teach or exercise authority over a man, but to remain quiet. 13 For it was Adam who was first created, and then Eve.” So, Paul ties the issue of teaching authority into the created order of God. Therefore, male eldership/pastorship is not a culturally related issue. It is based on the created order of God.
So, if a woman is a pastor she is not damned to hell for this, but she would be in contradiction to the word of God. She also would not be properly believing the word of God and what it says about this issue. How could such a person be trusted to properly represent God's word?

I would believe a woman would be out of the will of God if she sat by and watched a soul be lost in darkness due simply to the fact that a man is not around to teach. If we took a good look at the churches of today, they are not brimming to overflowing with men.

I once heard of a church of elderly women, a group of 7-9 did not have a male to teach them. What did they do? They waited for the only male child to turn 17 and he took over teaching them. Yes, following the letter of the law did not work in the Old Testament either.

If a woman preacher is in sin by teaching the word of God which we all have access to; then the power of the living word is not active. God's word does the saving and instructing. When man corrupts the word it's o.k. but we must make sure that a woman does not corrupt it.

What do you think? Are women pastors headed to hell?

Wednesday, July 7, 2010

Christian Woman Heritage

To understand the role women play in ministry today, we must acquaint ourselves with the role women played in ministry in the past. Education is Power!

Jesus selected and sent out the first missionary woman he met at the well. The book of Acts records the account of Priscilla, a woman specifically used of God to touch people in at least three different nations: Rome, Greece, and Asia Minor (Acts 18:26).

Many women were martyred for their love for Jesus in the first three centuries of Christianity. Lucia of Sicily, who lived about 300 A.D, was involved in Christian charitable work there. She married a wealthy nobleman. She was ordered to stop giving to the poor and when she refused she was jailed, persecuted and condemned to death.

Melania came from a wealthy family in Rome with estates all around the Mediterranean. She used her wealth to give to the poor and to build monasteries and churches for men and women in Africa and Jerusalem.

Clare lived and worked in the early thirtennth century. She was a reformer where Christianity had forgotten the poor. She founded the Franciscan order of the barefoot nuns in Italy.

The Protestant Reformation in the Sixteenth Century brought about changes in the role of women in Christianity. Reformers reemphasized that the role of women was in the home to be supportive of men. Arthur Glasser wrote that with the dissolution of the convents, women lost their last chance of churchly service outside the narrow circle of husband, home and children. In the early days of the Protestant mission most women who went to the field were wives of missionaries. Discerning men recognized that contact with women in most non-Western societies was impossible for them, so women had to undertake the responsibility. They received little recognition for their work. Leaders such as D.L. Moody, A.B. Simpson, and A.j. Gordon believed in encouraging women's gifts for public ministry.

The Civil war in the United States became a catalyst for change in the way women were sent. After the Civil War, so many men died that women were either widowed or unlikely to marry forcing women into an unusual range of responsibilities which extended into the church. Since missionary boards still refused to send women directly to work, women organized their own boards. One of the first such boards was the Women's Union Missionary Society. By 1900, over 40 denominational women's societies existed. By the eary decades of the 20th century, the women's missionary movement had become the largest women's movement in the United States. Sadly, boards were persuaded to combine with the denominational boards in the 1920's and 30's and women gradually lost their opportunity to direct the work.

Overall, probably two-thirds of the missionary force has been and currently is, female. Many mission executives agree that the more difficult and dangerous the work, the more likely women are to volunteer to do it.

David Yonggi Cho concludes from his experience; men are good for building up the work, but women are best for persevering when men get discouraged.

Women have been permitted great latitude in Christian ministry, with their work ranging from evangelism and church planting to translating Scripture and teaching seminaries. Christian women today need to know and celebrate their heritage.

How aware are you of the great works women have already done in Christian history? Should churches teach about the contributions of women to Christianity. Do you have your own great woman of Christianity that you would like people to become familiar with? If so, take a moment to tell us about her and her work.

from the book "Perspectives on the World Christian Movement (Women In Ministry) by Marguerite Kraft and Meg Crossman, Pasadena: Paternoter Publishing, 1999, 269-273.

Tuesday, July 6, 2010

What the Apostle Paul had to say


There have been many men throughout literature who have warned about the powers of a woman. The Apostle Paul has been one such man.

Paul has had much to say about Eve. He has had a lot to say about women in general. Mention the Apostle Paul in a room full of women and you will notice a couple of eyes rolling in exasperation at a man some label as a woman hater. It is interesting such a rule breaker and renegade as Paul would make a statement about women causing so much debate and angst such as: I Corinthians 14:33-35:
“For God is not a God of disorder but of peace. As in all the congregations of the saints, women should remain silent in the churches. They are not allowed to speak, but must be in submission, as the Law says. If they want to inquire about something, they should ask their own husband at home; for it is disgraceful for a woman to speak in the church.”

Another statement of Paul’s causing contention is found in I Timothy 2:9-15;
“I also want women to dress modestly, with decency and propriety, not with braided hair or gold or pearls or expensive clothes, but with good deeds, appropriate for women who profess to worship God. A woman should learn in quietness and full submission. I do not permit a woman to teach or to have authority over a man; she must be silent. For Adam was formed first, then Eve. And Adam was not the one deceived; it was the woman who was deceived and became a sinner. But women, will be saved through childbearing—if they continue in faith, love, and holiness with propriety.”

Paul was not a man who mixed words. Paul was not a man afraid to be used by God. He received a revelation from God to preach to the Gentiles and he did not let anything or anyone stop him as evidenced by Galatians 2:6, “As for those who seemed to be important---whatever they were makes no difference to me; God does not judge by external appearance---those men added nothing to my massage.”

It would seem Paul should have understood about the necessity to break the established rules in favor of kingdom work. Did he undrstand that there would arise a time that would make it necessary for women to break the assumed rules of silence for kingdom work? Do you truly believe Paul wanted the role of women in Christianity limited?

What do you think about the statements made by Paul about women? Could an apostle of God really not value the role of women in Christianity?

Friday, July 2, 2010

Vampire Fascination


From my manuscript "Death: Life's Annoying Neighbor)

There is no doubt we are fascinated with vampires. We flock to the movies and plunk down our cash to see a couple of hours of the pale sexy undead. They hold a certain mystery. They know what life is after death. We are drawn to them because in their life after death state, they are immune to the fear of pain and destruction. They are powerful and vibrant; able to live knowing they have no end. This can only be our dream. We must use caution in our vulnerable daily lives. We are powerless against natural forces. Watching the night roamers, we get to live out a fantasy. Vampires enjoy an existence after death; how seductive and alluring.

Long before Americans established themselves in America, people were being born and dying in other countries. As people immigrated to America, they bought a lot of their superstitions with them. America is a melting pot of superstitions. If one was truly serious about trying to extend their lives using handed down rituals and beliefs, there are enough of them to keep you busy until you can’t even think about dying.

Here are a few superstitions and beliefs related to death in the Philippines www.lininginthephilippines.com

1. If a black butterfly lingers around a person, it means that one of his relatives has just died.
2. No one should go out before the utensils used in eating have been washed and put away, otherwise a member of the family will die.
3. One must not organize teams of 3 or 13, otherwise one member will die.
4. Eating sour fruits at night will cause the early death of one’s parents.
5. At a funeral, not all members of the family should be allowed to look at the face of the dead person. If they do, he will visit them and all of them will die.
6. If a sick person on his way to the hospital meets a black cat, he will die.
7. If someone smells the odor of a candle when there is no candle burning, one of his relatives will die.
8. If one dreams that one of his teeth is being uprooted or pulled out, a member of his family will die.
9. If a person eats “malunggay” (leaves of a Philippine tree used as a vegetable) when one member of his family has just died, all the other members of the family will die.
10. During a wedding the one whose candle goes out first will be the first of the couple to die.
11. If one cuts his fingernails at night, a member of the family will die.
12. When a group of three have their picture taken, the one in the middle will die first.
13. If a cock crows in the afternoon, it means somebody will die.
14. If an owl is seen near the house of a sick person, that sick person is sure to die.
15. Pregnant women should not have their picture taken; otherwise, their babies will die.
16. While the mother is giving birth, every hole in the house should be covered, otherwise an evil spirit might come in and kill the baby.
17. When a pregnant woman wears a black dress, her baby will die.
18. If a person’s shadow appears to be without a head, that person will soon die.
19. Cleaning the backyard when the sun has already set and it is already dark causes death.
20. If two people from the same family get married within a year, one will die.
21. If you place a dead person with his feet pointing toward the rising sun, a relative will die

Thursday, July 1, 2010

Healing Old Wounds

Tell the truth. If I were to check out your closet of skeletons I would probably find a broken heart. There is always the ghost of the one who got away, or the one you made a complete fool of yourself for for love. For some, it was the first one who claimed your virginity with an oath never to love another only to love many more. Then of course, there is the one you mistreated in the idleness of your youth.

No matter what the case may be, past relationships can leave injuries to the heart that never quite heal. We are tempted at times to peek into our own closet of ghosts to revisit those old loves to see have they changed, evolved into what we wished they would have been. We close the door in disappointment beating ourselves for wondering. The wound oozes, seeming as fresh as the day it was born.

The song says "What becomes of the broken hearted?"

There are several choices: an angry hard hearted person looking for love in all the wrong places or a person continually feeling unloveable because THE ONE you wanted love from did not share your feelings.

I have a wound from an ex who was not truly an ex. It's complicated as most relationships that do not work out are. After years of living separate lives, I believed we could be friends. Older and wiser with life lessons learned, I believed the new improved me lived in the present and the past was in the past.

The problem. In my mind and heart, the ex has been petrified in time. I only see and hear the old version. There is no lust or hope for a relationship there, but all of the faults and shortcomings scream out. Now, whose problem is this; mines or his?

The problem of wounds that do not heal belongs to the person with the wounds. We all carry battle scars; it's part of living. But lost loves and past loves should just be that: PAST. I won't win a prize for being able to be in the ex'es presence without any residual emotion. It is not important prize to win. Ex'es are ex'es for a reason -- they were not the one. And since love relationships should be built on friendships, its safe to assume that there is no hope for friendship.

Now I'm talking about bad breakups, no amicable ones. I'm not talking about unforgiveness, because forgiveness of others is essential to peace. I am talking about wounds and scars of the heart. Revisiting the holder of the knife or gun is never a good thing and should be approached with caution. I am talking about taking care of yourself first in a healthy way.

Until you reach the point where you wish the ex well in life whether that includes you or not; stay away! Even then you may come to realize wishing them well actually does not include you because you are not the one they want in that capacity. Everyone deserves to be loved passionately and unconditionally. Returning to an ex only blocks that person in your future waiting to love you the first go round.

Back to ex'es as friends. Do I really need another friend? Do I really need an ex as a friend? There was no interest in me or my life the first go round and I have no interest presenting for a second time a new improved me for appraisal.

I am thankful this particular wound that will not heal is one and not several. I've met many more men who did not wound me. It was one knife, one time, one person. Ever seen someone with multiple gunshot wounds? I think you would tell them not to be around the shooter. We live, we learn, we live some more. The best we can ever hope for is not to live in the pain of yesterday nor the fear of tomorrow, but the reality of today. Today there is not a knife or gun.

This Could Be Me At Your Next Event

This Could Be Me At Your Next Event
Author And Public Speaker

NEED A SPEAKER FOR YOUR NEXT EVENT?

Do you have an upcoming gardening, church, or women's event planned and need a speaker? Contact me. I can speak on various topics such as:

1. Detangling Ancient Mythology From Christianity
2. The Female Presence In The History Of Christianity
3. Superstitions and Gardening In The 21st Century
4. The Politics Of Prayer: The Bible Speaks
5. African American Geneaology: Pride From The Grave


Contact me at rizerfall@yahoo.com for booking arrangements

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