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Caller: I would like to know what the Bible says about women as elders or pastors in a church and the texts that you might have to support those answers.

Pastor Doug: Alright. Before I give you the texts, if you write Amazing Facts, I wrote an article on this issue and there’s, of course, hundreds of scriptures—I can’t give them all to you—if you send for the article, the article is called Unisex and Jesus, Unisex and Jesus. Let me state what I believe the Bible teaches and then I’ll give you some scriptures.

I believe that God made man and woman as equal creatures; I don’t believe there’s any distinction between men and women when it comes to their value to God and the accessibility of salvation—they’re perfectly equal. I believe God ministers through men and women. You have both men and women teaching and preaching in the Bible in the capacity of prophets and evangelists and giving Bible studies, like Priscilla and Aquilla. But I do not see an example in the Bible where a woman serves in the capacity of a priest or a pastor or an elder, which they’re almost synonymous in the Bible. When Jesus chose the twelve Apostles, I don’t think that He was accommodating the traditions of the day when He chose men.

There are certain offices that have a male symbolism to them. The men were to be the priests of the family; that means servant leaders, not dictators or despots. So, one of the examples I like to use is the story of Moses. Amram and Jochabed had three children, they had Miriam, a girl, three years later they had Aaron and three years later they had Moses. They were very symmetrical in the way they did that. All three of their children were prophets. That must have been something in their family.

But the boys served as priests; Miriam did not. She was a prophetess, but not a priest. She led the women in prophetic songs and taught and other things, but…. You see Anna in the temple, you see Deborah as a prophetess and a judge in Israel, but you never see them making a sacrifice. And that, in the Bible, is an identity that is similar to Jesus; it is a male role. The Passover lamb, they were to take a male lamb because it was a type of Christ.

And so, it seems to be that in the same way that God has distinctions in family, and roles in the family, I think in a church family, that the sexual identity does not evaporate when you walk through the doors of a church. We’re an extension of the other family. Now, there’s a lot of scriptures that we can share with you, and you’ve got, of course, some very heavy ones where Paul talks about in I Corinthians 14:34, 35; I Corinthians 11:5, Luke 2:36, 37; Judges 4:4; I mean, I could indiscriminately just give you piles of Scripture but probably the best thing is if you send for the article, Unisex and Jesus, it covers it from one end to the other. Okay?

Caller: Okay. As I’ve studied I’ve found the same thing, but I appreciate your answer.

Pastor Doug: Alright. Thank you very much.
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