Women in Ministry

May 8, 2000

To explain the words of Paul in the New Testament regarding women, we only need to go to the original Greek and understand the difference between the word used for women and the word used for wives. Surprise, it is the same word. When the translations were done into English, the word women was used when the context was for wives and everyone since has been blaming Paul for being anti-woman. I have asked Jesus to be in charge of these discussions, right? As soon as I mailed off the idea that women in the ministry should be discussed, an e-mail was sent to me immediately from someone not even on the mailing list that gave us the right answers to this question and it is in the study of the original Greek.

This time, I would like to comment on each one of the responses to the discussion individually rather than commentary in the beginning. The responses were overwhelmingly in favor of women except one. Of course, I am in favor of women in the ministry and it was just a woman as an apostle that I was confused about. The discussion is still on apostles and Godly authority. We can keep this up if you have more to say, otherwise, I will put something together soon and come up with some conclusions. This discussion and the responses are really great.

If there is more on authority you would like to bring out, we should hear it. If there is more to say about apostles or women that have been discussed, feel free.


Author: George Potkonyak

Some time ago I saw Roberts Liardon's "God's Generals", a series of videos describing lives of some of the mighty people of God. Among them he mentions three women: Maria Woodward-Ether, Amie Sapmle McPherson and Kathryne Kuhlman. There was no doubt in my mind that these three women ministered with authority, I mean, God's authority. My first reaction was: look at this our God! He commanded us that a woman should not preach neither have authority over man, but He Himself is running around and appointing them to such callings. I thought that there was something wrong, either with God or with our understanding of His word. I quickly concluded that the first option is out of question, so I proceeded with looking at the second option: our understanding of the Scripture.

My conclusion was rather unorthodox: never heard anyone teaching along these lines. So, bear with me, it won't take long. I'll start with the following Scripture:

1 Cor 14:34-35

[34] Let your women keep silence in the churches: for it is not permitted unto them to speak; but they are commanded to be under obedience, as also saith the law.
[35] And if they will learn any thing, let them ask their husbands at home: for it is a shame for women to speak in the church.

You may say: "You see, didn't I tell you!" It is apparently quite clear, without a shadow of a doubt, that a woman is simply not permitted to speak in the church. Well, perhaps - except for a little phrase:

"...as also saith the law."

I have no doubt that Paul was referring to the "Law and the Prophets" - the Old Testament, as we know it today. So, let's see what "saith the law".

The first thing that came to my mind was Deborah.

Judg 4:4-5

[4] And Deborah, a prophetess, the wife of Lapidoth, she judged Israel at that time.
[5] And she dwelt under the palm tree of Deborah between Ramah and Bethel in mount Ephraim: and the children of Israel came up to her for judgment.

Deborah was not only a prophetess, but she was a judge in Israel, an ultimate authority at that time - the authority given by God. A woman, having an authority over men of the whole nation.

In case that Paul didn't really refer to the whole of the Old Testament, but only to the Law of Moses - the first five books, I searched it... and searched it... and searched it... And I found it! It is in the Numbers 30, the whole chapter. So, let's look at it.


[1] And Moses spake unto the heads of the tribes concerning the children of Israel, saying, This is the thing which the LORD hath commanded.

Let's make it clear here: this is not some local regulation; this is a commandment of the LORD.


[2] If a man vow a vow unto the LORD, or swear an oath to bind his soul with a bond; he shall not break his word, he shall do according to all that proceedeth out of his mouth.

In other words, a man has authority over his own words and actions. God holds him responsible for them.


[3] If a woman also vow a vow unto the LORD, and bind herself by a bond, being in her father's house in her youth;
[4] And her father hear her vow, and her bond wherewith she hath bound her soul, and her father shall hold his peace at her: then all her vows shall stand, and every bond wherewith she hath bound her soul shall stand.
[5] But if her father disallow her in the day that he heareth; not any of her vows, or of her bonds wherewith she hath bound her soul, shall stand: and the LORD shall forgive her, because her father disallowed her.

Here is a woman, a young girl still in her father's house (at those times all girls were in their fathers', houses till they marry). It looks like she has no full authority over her words and actions. Her father can overrule her and God will accept his decision. Her father has an authority over her. Is it because he is her father? No. Is it because he is a man? No. There is a reason, however - just be patient with me.


[6] And if she had at all an husband, when she vowed, or uttered ought out of her lips, wherewith she bound her soul;
[7] And her husband heard it, and held his peace at her in the day that he heard it: then her vows shall stand, and her bonds wherewith she bound her soul shall stand.
[8] But if her husband disallowed her on the day that he heard it; then he shall make her vow which she vowed, and that which she uttered with her lips, wherewith she bound her soul, of none effect: and the LORD shall forgive her.

Our little girl has really grown up, so much so that she was allowed by her father to get married. Now, being grown up woman, one would expect her to have a full authority over her words and her actions. But not so! There is another 'male chauvinist [blank]' who has usurped her authority, that is, her husband. And obviously, according to the Scripture, God upholds this new authority over her.

[9] But every vow of a widow, and of her that is divorced, wherewith they have bound their souls, shall stand against her.

Finally free!!! Ladies, here is the clue for you to get hold of that elusive independence and authority: get rid of your husbands! Now you understand why we have such a high divorce rate, even among the believers. [I hope you don't mind a joke or two].

So, what the above Scripture teaches us? A grown up woman who doesn't live in her father's house and has no husband, is not responsible for her words and actions to anybody except to God. No other man has authority over her, not even a priest (nor her pastor).


[10] And if she vowed in her husband's house, or bound her soul by a bond with an oath;
[11] And her husband heard it, and held his peace at her, and disallowed her not: then all her vows shall stand, and every bond wherewith she bound her soul shall stand.
[12] But if her husband hath utterly made them void on the day he heard them; then whatsoever proceeded out of her lips concerning her vows, or concerning the bond of her soul, shall not stand: her husband hath made them void; and the LORD shall forgive her.
[13] Every vow, and every binding oath to afflict the soul, her husband may establish it, or her husband may make it void.
[14] But if her husband altogether hold his peace at her from day to day; then he establisheth all her vows, or all her bonds, which are upon her: he confirmeth them, because he held his peace at her in the day that he heard them.
[15] But if he shall any ways make them void after that he hath heard them; then he shall bear her iniquity.

Here is a repetition of what has already been said. I believe that it applies to a widow or a divorced woman who re-marries. When she re-marries she gets under the authority of her new husband.


[16] These are the statutes, which the LORD commanded Moses, between a man and his wife, between the father and his daughter, being yet in her youth in her father's house.

At the beginning of this commandment it appeared that the issue is the honouring of vows. But from the verse 16, it is clear that the issue is relationship between a woman and her father or her husband. She is always under the authority of her father if she lives in his house, for her father is the head of the family. She is also under the authority of her husband, if she has one, because he is the head of his household.

So, it is clear: a woman is not under authority of a man, except when she lives in household where a man (her father or her husband) is the head of the family. Not because he is a man but because he is the head of the family. If she lives on her own (a widow or a divorcee) no man has authority over her, she is responsible directly to God.

Now, with this new insight under our belt, let's go back to 1 Corinthians.

1 Cor 14:34-35

[34] Let your women keep silence in the churches: for it is not permitted unto them to speak; but they are commanded to be under obedience, as also saith the law.
[35] And if they will learn any thing, let them ask their husbands at home: for it is a shame for women to speak in the church.

From verse 34 "... but they are commanded to be under obedience, as also said the law", having in mind Numbers 30, talks about either a young woman in her father's house, or a married woman. Verse 35 is quite clear that the text refers to a married woman, she has a husband. In other words, this passage of Scripture refers to the marital relationship (even in the church) between a husband and his wife.

One may ask: "Why the Scripture doesn't say so?". Well, it does! There is one and the same Greek word for woman or wife, and also one and the same word for man or husband. The two words have been translated, not only in this instance, as man and woman rather than husband and wife, not necessarily because it was more accurate but because it lined up with our tradition.

The above text could have been legitimately translated as:

[34] Let your wives keep silence in the churches: for it is not permitted unto them to speak; but they are commanded to be under obedience, as also saith the law.
[35] And if they will learn any thing, let them ask their husbands at home: for it is a shame for wives to speak in the church.

The phrase, "... for it is a shame for wives to speak in the church" looks to be a little bit harsh. But, what I believe, Paul was addressing some customs in the Corinthian church, and this particular portion might be connected with chapter 11 (which I will address later on), in which he said:

1 Cor 11:16

[16] But if any man seem to be contentious, we have no such custom, neither the churches of God.

That could mean that one of the "customs" was that wives would talk during the service either asking their husbands or, worse still, explaining to them what the preacher was saying. Not much has changed in 2000 years! So, Paul was saying: "Hang on ladies; leave this talk for your home".

Here is another Scripture that 'clearly' states that a woman cannot teach nor have an authority over a man.

1 Tim 2:11-15

[11] Let the woman learn in silence with all subjection.
[12] But I suffer not a woman to teach, nor to usurp authority over the man, but to be in silence.
[13] For Adam was first formed, then Eve.
[14] And Adam was not deceived, but the woman being deceived was in the transgression.
[15] Notwithstanding she shall be saved in childbearing, if they continue in faith and charity and holiness with sobriety.

Again, the only thing that is quite clear here is that this Scripture talks about relationship between a husband and his wife rather than between a man and a woman in general. Verses 13 and 14 talk about Adam and Eve. The were not just a man and a woman, but rather a husband and his wife right from the moment Eve opened her eyes for the first time. Here it is:

Gen 2:20-25

[20] And Adam gave names to all cattle, and to the fowl of the air, and to every beast of the field; but for Adam there was not found an help meet for him.
[21] And the LORD God caused a deep sleep to fall upon Adam and he slept: and he took one of his ribs, and closed up the flesh instead thereof; [22] And the rib, which the LORD God had taken from man, made he a woman, and brought her unto the man.
[23] And Adam said, This is now bone of my bones, and flesh of my flesh: she shall be called Woman, because she was taken out of Man.
[24] Therefore shall a man leave his father and his mother, and shall cleave unto his wife: and they shall be one flesh.
[25] And they were both naked, the man and his wife, and were not ashamed.

It is even more clear from verse 15: "Notwithstanding she [singular] shall be saved in childbearing, if they [plural] continue in faith and charity and holiness with sobriety." Who are "they"? Obviously, the wife and her husband, because these are the only two people required for the process of childbearing. So, the verses should read:

[11] Let the wife learn in silence with all subjection [to her husband].
[12] But I suffer not a wife to teach, nor to usurp authority over the husband, but to be in silence.

The Greek word used in the above phrase "to usurp authority" is used once only in the whole of the New Testament. The meaning is that the wife should not wrestle away the authority given to her husband. It does not apply to a woman and a man, because there is no authority given to a man over a (grown up) woman, except in their marriage relationship.

Here is the last Scripture I am going to quote:

1 Cor 11:3-12

[3] But I would have you know, that the head of every man is Christ; and the head of the woman is the man; and the head of Christ is God.
[4] Every man praying or prophesying, having his head covered, dishonoureth his head.
[5] But every woman that prayeth or prophesieth with her head uncovered dishonoureth her head: for that is even all one as if she were shaven.
[6] For if the woman be not covered, let her also be shorn: but if it be a shame for a woman to be shorn or shaven, let her be covered.
[7] For a man indeed ought not to cover his head, forasmuch as he is the image and glory of God: but the woman is the glory of the man.
[8] For the man is not of the woman; but the woman of the man.
[9] Neither was the man created for the woman; but the woman for the man.
[10] For this cause ought the woman to have power on her head because of the angels.
[11] Nevertheless neither is the man without the woman, neither the woman without the man, in the Lord.
[12] For as the woman is of the man, even so is the man also by the woman; but all things of God.

Here I will comment only on verse 3. The rest of the text can be taken either way, it doesn't make any significant difference. (And I would appreciate somebody explaining to me verse 10).

If we look at the verse three, as it is translated ("and the head of the woman is the man"), it may have a few meanings: a) any man is the head of any woman, b) every man is the head of every woman, c) any man is the head of every woman, and d) every man is the head of any woman. Neither of these variations makes sense. The only translation that does make sense, and is in line with the rest of the Scripture, Old Testament and New Testament alike, is this: "and the head of the wife is the husband" [her husband, that is]...

In conclusion: Ladies, if the Lord calls you to any ministry and gives you the authority necessary to carry out His work, go for it! Tough luck guys.

If He calls you to be a prophetess, you have to speak, even in the church. If He calls you to be a teacher, you have to teach, even man, even your husband in the church setting (and still submit to him when it comes to the family matters). If the Lord calls you to be an apostle, go for it. And, God forbid, if He calls you to be a pastor... As you know, God gives gifts as He pleases, whether you are a man or a woman, makes no difference. But it does upset Him if you don't respond. So, ignore some [blank] rules and regulations of man. Obey God rather than man.

May God bless you all - especially you ladies!

George Potkonyak

I have no idea where this came from other than Mr. Potkonyak sent it to me. I mailed out the last discussion material late at night and it was in the mail early in the morning. Being that He is from Australia, he could have picked it up off the internet, I have been putting the discussion on my site as I send them out. I contacted him but no reply, I really bear witness to what he is saying here and would suggest this interpretation of the original Greek for everyone. Ladies, submit to your husbands but do not submit to those that would silence you in the church, recoil from them as if from evil.

Jay, I am not nowhere near a female, but I can tell you for sure that women can be apostles. It is biblical for the wife to have the same calling as her husband. Scripture tells us that two shall come together and become one flesh. A husband and wife are "one" in the eyes of the Father. If both man and wife submit themselves to God like we are supposed to do, this is a true statement. But, there are many that are caught up in man-made doctrine that says women are a bunch of heifers, and they should stay out of the ministry. If that is the case for you, then you might aughta go back to the book of Judges and read about Deborah. I won't stop there. Paul says to salute Priscilla and Aquila. Last time I looked at things, Priscilla was a woman.

To get back to the jist of things, the bast way I can put this is I have a calling on my life. My wife has the same calling on her life. If she would have married an evangelist, she would have that call. God has never given a man one calling and his wife a different calling. They may work out of different stages of that calling, but when you boil it down to the nitty-gritty the call is the same. There is no room for disagreement here. If you feel otherwise, from what I have seen, you are biblicaly out of line. But, don't take my word for it. Read it for yourself.

I will go on and say that if the woman is married to a sinner or a man that refuses to hear the call on his life, then the woman will have a different call. This is the only case I have seen concerning this subject. I know of a few different examples. I am sure we all know of at least one. Be BLESSED in Jesus name,

I think that this is a valid argument here that if a man and a woman is truly one flesh that a woman can share in the calling of her husband. And conversely, if the man is a sinner that does not submit to the authority of the Lord, then it could change the relationship of the submissiveness of the woman. If she must make a choice, which would be the righteous one? What of those unsaved husbands that never come to church, is she still forbidden to speak?

An Apostle in this day and time is one who has an anointing, a gifting that calls forth the gift ministries. It calls for putting the hand to the plow in all humility. I have watched myself operate in an apostolic anointing, but I NEVER brought that to anyone's attention. It has just been something I've observed. It is only the Lord that has spoken to me concerning this. One time, only one time a leader, in the church came to me and told me that what I was operating in was the apostolic. If I made it my business to look like what I think an apostle looks like, then I would have my reward. Concerning what I said earlier about my Girl Scout troop, I am primarily a teacher. The children I work with come from diverse backgrounds. Some have grown up in homes that do not worship God, some from very religious homes. I believe that we that are spiritual have a responsibility to show these children what it looks like to love and serve God. That is why I love Girl Scouts. In the middle of the secular school, God comes in very real ways. I get the opportunity to see the very beginnings of leadership in these little girls, and instead of everything we doing being my idea, the girls get to carry out the passion from within them. One little girl said that she would like for us to go to a homeless shelter to feed the homeless and gather clothing for them. I asked why and she said she knew what they needed, because she and her mother had been homeless. She is eight years old and is standing for something different in her home and in her community. Another little girl told us with tears, how the elderly need love and for people to want to be with them. Her grandpa was in a nursing home and died there.

My heart is primarily for teens in our nation. I hurt for them. When I look at teens, I see pastors, teachers, many apostles, many intercessors. The passion for the younger has come about because I have an eight year old daughter.

I am generally somewhat uncomfortable around people who with vast knowledge about the Bible, using long sentences and big words. I have had most of the new testament memorized, but in what God has called me to, people rarely would know that I have such knowledge. Am I an apostle? God knows and I don't really care.
Cathy Grant

This is where the office of an apostle must need defining. If god were to call a person in an apostolic anointing to a task that has traditionally been given to women, must it be a man's job? This is where it just would not make sense. Can there not be an apostle to girl scouts or something similar? If so, must it be a man. I suppose the man that thinks that God would not include women apostles would just as likely be the one that thinks that girl scouts are not important enough to send an apostle to. With some people, you cannot win, but then again, who needs to? This is a perfect question with a perfect answer. Am I an apostle? God knows and I don't really care. If there is truly an apostolic anointing on your life, I mean a true apostolic anointing, it makes no difference if you called an apostle. If it is true, then the perfect will of the Father will be done, no matter what the calling is called. God's will be done, not mine, not yours, just His; no titles, no delineation, just obedience. What does it matter what others say or do or call you? Just do His will and care not about what others say.

Dear Jay;

I have had an interesting summer. One Sunday last June I was worshiping the Lord, listening to the worship team I had raised up in my church. I was thrilled at how they progressed, and how much we loved each other...something I had worked diligently on. A question came into my mind "How would you like to do this in other churches??" Thinking it a stray, I said "No, I'm happy here."

That next Friday was the last time I lead worship in that church. Through some strange, confusing circumstances, within 2 mos I was hired at another church, leading worship. One of the main things that was needed there was the "team"thing I had formed at the other church. I am currently enjoying the challenge, since this is a very large church. My point is this: I believe that initial voice was the Lord, telling me my work was done there, and there were other places He wanted me to do this same thing. Because I do not believe in going from church-to-church, (i had been at my former church 7 years) I believe God brought me out of that church to this one, and I am employing the same standards and techniques for building up the worship team here. Also, have been called by a few other churches to help with their worship teams.

Is this an "apostolic" thing? I am a woman who has loved and served the Lord for 20 years, and am also a Pastoral Counselor. I love to build teams that are not envying each other and back-biting, but truly love each other and it comes forth when the team leads worship. Someone commented once that it seemed like God was doing an "apostolic" thing with me.

What do you think?

carol manglos

Well this is the only answer that can be given is that God knows. The more I see the call of an apostle, the more I see that to judge whether there are women apostles or even if other men are called as apostles, really does not matter. For anyone to set themselves up as some kind of a super-apostle that can judge whether others are truly called to the gift has to be false. God knows and that is the important thing. God will do His perfect will with us no matter what. Of course, it is important to know that there are apostles in the church and just like giving water to a prophet in the name of a prophet, you will receive a prophet's reward, same goes for apostles. I have seen nothing in this discussion concerning apostles in general that could not apply to women, and I came into this thing with my mind open. As far as I am concerned God will have His way and I cannot predict what He will do no more than I can limit what He can do. If God wants to make our callings into apostolic "things," who am I to argue or to say that He cannot.


Hmmm...quite a few interesting topics going on in your latest missive, besides the title subject. I have prayed and will see where the Lord leads...

First, on a personal note...having been through something similar as you describe with the "leader" of your group....my advice is to continue to pray for the person - that God would love and bless him - and keep him in your prayers until YOU really do love him (actually the Lord in/through you). This will keep the bitterness/resentment from your own heart & life, which is the most important thing...you can't change anyone else (only the Lord can), but you don't need the poison in your own system, which is what praying for them in sincerity will prevent (or remove). I don't mean to intrude in your affairs or be presumptuous, just sensed some hurt to which I could relate.

Women can be used by God just as well as men in most any role...the Old Testament and church history clearly shows this. They also can be just as deceived and mistaken. Gender alone gives no special privilege in either direction.

The real dilemmas are (1) authority and its counterpart, submission; and (2) discernment. Those who are truly surrendered in their hearts to the Lord Jesus and thus sincerely seek to listen to the Holy Spirit will recognize and receive from Him regardless of how He chooses to speak. They will have the witness of the Word and the Spirit within and will judge the truth of what they hear accordingly, for God does not speak contrary to His written Word nor without the confirmation of His Spirit (if we are sensitive to Him). Thus our submission is not to the person through whom He speaks, it is to the Lord Himself. He is the true Authority with whom we have to deal, although it is through his designated authorities (civil or otherwise) that we must submit in our day to day, "normal" lives. If we will not submit to them, then we will not submit to Him either. Pride comes clothed in lots of disguises, and for Christians, typically sneaks in when we are so humbly just going about "doing our Father's business".

Most of us get into the most trouble when we "lean upon our own understanding" in trying to discern what is "of the Lord" and what is not, rather than taking the time to learn how to listen Him. I have long thought that the one thing that every member of the body can learn from the other members, is how to listen to the head. (The eye does not necessarily need to know toe stuff, but it can sure learn something when the toe speaks on listening and obeying the head.) This may be why so many "ministries" are ineffective: if a member of our body is not responsive to us, what good is it? (I can get along without a finger, but the finger sure can't get along without me.)

We would probably not have as many of the misunderstandings we have in the church (and in our own personal walk) if we would recognize the truth of the statement that "we do not belong to ourselves". We have been "bought with a great price" and therefore we belong to God. Nothing happens to us apart from Him. He allows all that comes our way - and that means every single thing - for He "disciplines those whom He loves". He is aware of everything we suffer, therefore we must "work out our salvation with fear and trembling, for it is God who is at work in us". And just as Jesus suffered in the flesh in order to learn obedience (Heb. 5:8), so must we. It is important to realize that everything God does with us is aimed toward having us grow in Christ...everything is first and foremost for our spiritual development. Discipline is the masculine form of love (just as nurturing is the feminine) and there is a big difference between discipline and punishment.
Discipline is from love, punishment is for fear.

Much more could be said on these subjects, but time and space forbids it.

Again, my prayer is that this contributes something worthwhile.

In His Service,

Stan Dommert

Thanks Stan, I must realize that if we are to come to one accord through love and humility and submitting to each other, then you have the attitude and authority that I recognize that I must submit to in kind. As to that leader of the apostolic group, I have tried to pray and even to let others in the group know that I have wanted to pray for him. Out of all the people in the group, only one wanted to pray with me and he ended up compromising away from that. I have felt closure on the issue but that it is not yet over for me. Personally I must and will still pray for him, I did not stop loving him, I only changed my mind about the validity of his calling. Many times I have tried to separate completely from the group but the Lord kept calling me back to them. I felt for so long that it was because the group would somehow come into line with the humility and love expected from them and I would be restored there, but now I have my doubts. I will wait and see.

Also your views on authority are the same as mine and what I will be putting together. Others here share the same view. We do have authority but it is the same authority that Jesus had, He spoke as a man having authority but He spoke what the father spoke, He did not speak on His own authority while He was here on earth but what authority that His Father had given Him.

Hi Jay,

I got your e-mail on Women Apostles, I'm sure this is an unpopular opinion, but, I believe there was a reason the Apostles were all men & Jesus & God are men. Take a look at the United States since the dawning of Affirmative Action. With it's inclusion of homosexuals & women, this country is plagued by moral & social decay.


Well, I would say that this is not such an unpopular opinion as you may think but held by many in the church but we are discussing women in the ministry, not the market-place. What I would add is that God made women, He did not make homo-sexuals. God uses women in the church, not homo-sexuals, not in the spirit anyway. Women were created by God, not so, homo-sexuals. To equate the two together is being unfair. I do believe that what you say is true as regards to much of the break-up of the family. When women became so financially independent that they no longer needed their husbands, rampant divorce followed. I see that as the fault of greedy people that caused the inflation and increased housing costs that forced women in the market-place. It also caused millions of single men to be unemployed and displaced causing the homeless problem that we have today. I don't know what this has to do with affirmative action though. Women and minorities did not cause affirmative action laws to be passed, discrimination did, they only responded to it. If God is not a respecter of persons, then neither should we be.

Yes, my brother, it is certainly time to put this issue to debate. Praise His Holy name that we are to not be respecters of persons. That means male or female. I think we are looking at it from the wrong standpoint. Paul's standpoint was not the only one and certainly not the final one. Yes, the Apostles argued even amongst themselves as well. This should raise up the "flag" that their own upbringing and traditions (not to let women speak) were infiltrating Jesus' doctrine. These petty quarrels, however, have left us nagging at one another. The same goes for baptizing in Jesus' name or Father, Son and Holy Spirit. Another glitch thrown in because someone said it and the Apostles never corrected it. Luke even wrote it in there. To me, it doesn't matter. I'm for Unity of the Body to prepare for Jesus' coming. As one crying in the wilderness preparing for the coming of my Lord.

When we look at a leader in Church or anywhere, we should not look at them as male or female, but as the voice of God Who uses any means possible to get us to hear. If God can call a man to leadership, He can certainly call a woman. Is God prejudice? Not so. We cannot put God in a box. God pours out His Spirit on both men, women, etc. Why can't women be in leadership? THEY CAN. But some want to restrict the voice of God. I, too, was rebuked because of letting women speak and be in charge. But "they" are not in charge of me, only Jesus is. Glory to His name! It is time to break FREE from the bondage of ecclesiastical/religious/archaic thinking that has been imposed on the Church to drown out those who would speak for God. Thank you, Jay for this site. Praise Him.

love in Jesus, Joseph

Yes, it is time to break free. We are not to be a respecter of persons but to be like our Father in Heaven with Jesus as our example. As to Paul, it is time to understand that Paul has been misunderstood on this issue and we as a church have put him in a box. As to women in leadership, I still am not convinced that we should have others lead the church besides Jesus but anointed women in ministry? Yes and with all the power and authority that Jesus had.

hi Jay and group==thank God for His loving grace==There has been brought forth two view points in talking about the office of apostle.One view from people who do not want to rule and one from those who do.And to me anyway,I have never seen a sheep that is able to lead a herd of sheep.As a sheep is unable to lead only to blindly follow.We as part of God's church are all only broken vessels that God has repaired so that we can used for His purpose.We do not have control over what God pours into His vessels only the right to carry that which has been given to us.As I have read and understood what God pours into us is His spirit.The spirit of God is the power of God thru His Son,and my lord,Jesus Christ.If we set our minds to rule,we shall fail.Does the blind lead the blind?In my 21 years of being born again I have found that the leading is not the hard part,it is the following that makes people stumble.It is very easy to want to have your own way and to use God's word as a permission slip to do so.I will close this with these thoughts=humble yourselves before an all powerful God and listen to the voice of the master,for it does not matter if you are male or female -only that you be a holy vessel-one that God can use and one day be able to say to you"welcome in".There was once an angel who once thought that he would be like God and he fell.I would hate to think what would happen to us if we too wanted to take God's glory.If God calls you to speak and lead do so-if He calls you to listen and follow do so,but regardless what God has called you to do,do it with all that you have to do it with.We will not be rewarded in heaven for anything other that this,we heard the voice of the master and we did what we were told,for by our doing He does. With the love that is of God may all that be of Him may you be blessed of Him--your brother in christ-james s.

Humility is the key, this is where the true authority comes from. If we are truly submitting ourselves to God, we have the authority to do the things that He is would have us to do. If it is done in pride, authority will be usurped and abused. I agree here that we are not to govern and rule, no matter what our calling or gift and we should be faithful to what the Lord would have us be.

I have posted this in response to a question posed on a discussion group.

What exactly is a "Territorial Apostle"?

I believe the answer to this question would be determined by looking into the effectiveness of an apostle's realm of influence. Acts 1:8 (NKJV) "But you shall receive power when the Holy Spirit has come upon you; and you shall be witnesses to Me in Jerusalem, and in all Judea and Samaria, and to the end of the earth."

Our Jerusalem (city of peace) is our home territory. We must start there and reach out beyond it as our influence increases. We get more when we are faithful with what we have. Where there is effectiveness within a territory or region, there will be results (fruit that remains).

Realistically, apostolic ministry has a heart for the nations. Of course this breaks down into all different kinds of people groups. Which means outreach and establishing strongholds in a territory.

Apostles should not only compliment the evangelists' ministry, but enhance it as well as the ministries of the pastors, teachers and prophets. True apostolic is not concerned about losing ground in their region to other ministries, but gaining ground for the kingdom of God using every available resource supplied to them by God.

This is unique in that a territorial anointing comes upon apostle(s) and prophets and those who labor with them to win the community through the many different means available. Where this type of co- laboring comes by the Spirit, God commands the blessing according to Psalms 133.

Effective conversions and discipling which results in growth of the church and the manifestation of darkness such as crime begins to lessen due to the biblical dominion exercised by the church in unity. Ephesians 3:10 (NKJV)to the intent that now the manifold wisdom of God might be made known by the church to the principalities and powers in the heavenly places. This is wisdom the enemy cannot gainsay nor resist!

It's obviously not just about apostles and prophets. It's about the saints being equipped with these anointings to restore the foundations of our societies and churches and establish the kingdom of God's rule. This is where Jesus works through His church! Where there is a territorial apostolic gifting, there follows a releasing of the saints into workable ministry that is relative in reaching out to others beyond present limited mindsets.

There is a new model of effectiveness for the church in this hour! We must arise!

Reaching for Heaven & Touching the Nations,
Bret A.Wade

Hi Bret, I don't know if this was in response to our discussion or not but this is a good response to what the Great Commission is really all about. We are to start at home. This has been becoming clear for me with a large site that ministers to people all over the world, God is now calling me to revival in my home town. Praise the Lord for His goodness, I am new to this city and God had never before given me visions of revival before now. I pray that I am obedient and will labor in my own Jerusalem.

Hi Jay,

At times I become confused about the Role of Women in leadership roles. Paul says women should be quiet, and not teach men, then he says women should only teach younger women and children. Does this include baby boys? Then a women/mother is charged with teaching her family in the ways of God. Many may say this role is not big enough. I feel teaching your children about God, Jesus and the Word is very important, because many parents don't. This day and age many men aren't involved in church or spiritual things, but women are. If we followed Paul's rules, children would not get taught anything in this day and age.

I don't see any thing wrong with women being in leadership roles. Maybe we should redefine leadership and call it a partnership in ministry. Paul's says it was the women who was deceived first in the Garden, we are the weaker sex when it comes to spiritual things, this personally hurts, but sometimes the truth hurts. Because we sinned first, is our punishment not to proclaim the Gospel, I think not. I believe Jesus reconciled women to God. Many of Jesus most faithful followers were women. It was a women who gave birth to our Salvation.

My mother uses this line to give reason why a women should be a pastor, she says "If God let a donkey speak, then why can't a women be a apostle/preacher?" It seems like women have been put down so much throughout the centuries, I know that this wasn't God's will but man's will. Why can't a women proclaim the teach/preach what God has done for her in her life. If a woman is founded and rooted in the bible and shows this by her actions, if she has the gifts of the Spirit and is faithful to God, then what's the problem. If a women was surrounded by many false male prophets and she stood up and witnessed to the truth, is she from the devil because she is standing up for her belief in God against men. No she is exercising her faith and endurance in dealing with men speaking falsely against God. It takes a strong women to stand up in the midst of vipers.

I feel sad when I read Paul's letters saying because the women sinned first, but when you read the bible it says that Adam sinned (I am not covering up what eve did), this seems like another one of our many punishments for disobedience. Many times it seems like Paul is just giving his personal opinion, because he is bold, he's a man and he was a man of great authority, so his natural perception would be for women to be left out of proclaiming/teaching/preaching the Word of God. Jesus says all have sinned and fall short, but we are reconciled through Christ. In Christ there is no male or female no Jew or Gentile, bond or free. So doesn't this mean that we all are in partnership together, all are responsible to spread the Good News, all are charged with being good stewards, we all have a part to play not just men. I feel if men lead everything some things would be missing, If women lead everything some things would be missing, but together there is a balance. If women weren't involved in the Good News then there would be no examples for the little girls, teen-age girls or young women. I believe that all men, women, children, young and old are all a part of the body of Christ and we are all responsible.

I know we follow the bible letter for letter, symbol for symbol, content for content. I know God is the same yesterday, today and tomorrow. But his ways are not like our ways, his thought are higher than our thoughts. God does things out of love for us. Do we do things out of love for God or out of greed, power and having authority over many?

Jesus expresses no difference, but everyone is listening to Paul. Then sometimes Paul seems to contradict himself when he says that all are a part of the body of Christ with different functions, Jesus is the head and we are the body and it's parts. Are women the lower parts? I don't think so. All are one in the sight of God. God himself says He is not a God of any respectable person. So what does that tell you. The Spirit of God is poured out upon all of us, not just men.

Thanks for listening

Thanks Steph, because it is what I have been saying in that we should be calling leadership roles something else and get to acknowledging Jesus as our leader. You must all be following what is going on here to be reading this far and that is that Paul has been misunderstood. I am with you, the Spirit of God is poured out upon all of us, not just men. Maybe that is the promise given to Joel in these last days of the spirit upon all flesh. Maybe this is the new thing, the new song that we are singing. I hope so.

It is interesting that having just moved into a new community I have started to go to a Church where the pastor is a very gifted, anointed and God loving woman who has for twenty years preached God's love and the Gospel in a very straight forward and loving manner. The business of a woman not being able to teach must have been from the time and culture of the day, women then were possessions and Godly ones of stature still held the mantle of respect and authority only rarely. There was also the cult of temple prostitution that would have made any woman of that era suspect and especially among the Jews of the day. Women teachers as an acceptable norm was just too much then. And I know there are many arguments of sticking to the tried and true and just let women sing in the choir and have ministries of helps, but I do know this and it may be so for the community I now live in, if God is not getting through in the true and loving way that He is, in His very nature and in an the immutable way, in which He wants to work His Holy will, He will use any one or any thing to get His message across man woman, or Balams's donkey. I know I went to a very liberal church some 15 years ago and the pastorate changed and a woman took over and I had to leave because there was nothing of God coming through her to me for spiritual food. Now there are no other pastors who can seem to feed me through our blessed Lord but this dear woman who preaches and heals and teaches God's word. In the spiritual realm we have more than thesis/antithesis, we have many antinomies things that are and things that are not and things that are seemingly both true and false. Predestination is one of those hovering above us till we live in a dimension outside of space and time that we are stuck in. In looking back at our lives it does seem that even when we walked away or before we knew God our lives were planned out to find Him. But then there is the "Who so ever cometh unto Me.." and the doctrine as a doctrine of men of Predestination gets knocked over and spilled out on the floor. Women Apostles are certainly the same. Joan of Arc is an example. Madam Guyon another, and examples that point toward the different types of apostles and toward what has already been mentioned in that they are often spiritual mechanics or physicians, or midwives that help toward a birth in the Kingdom of new windows of light that shine through from the loving eyes of our blessed Savior, Christ Jesus whose eyes shine upon us so brightly that we may not look into them, save through another vessel who can. Women apostles? Sure, Maybe the exception and not the rule, but of course women Apostles, if He chooses them of course. "My sheep know my voice." We need not worry about being fooled. James Kelly

Exactly, I think that it was a cultural thing in the first century that has changed now. Since I have studied liberation theology, it is easy for me to accept that God is teaching us things throughout history that brings us to a progressive revelation of His perfect will for us. We know more now than we did then, and for us to go back to the past and ignore what God has taught us is pure ignorance for sure. The restoration is to bring us into that original purity but that will not include what was false in a cultural sense but apply what is true to what we have learned since. That is the essence of present truth of which those thinking in the flesh cannot understand. If we did not need God to bring us new truths, we would not need apostles and prophets in the church today. Of course that is what many believe in that they are not needed because there is not more truth to be had. The true truth is that God has more for us to learn and those of us with a teachable spirit and ears to hear will listen and hear His voice, those that do not, will not and cannot.

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