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The Hesitant Nature Of Women In Ministry

1285 words - 6 pages

The Hesitant Nature of Women in Ministry
The assumed role of women in context of religion has been a topic of much controversy within many denominations and congregations throughout history. Even with the advancement of women in secular society, women have still been prohibited from occupying pastoral roles in various religious denominations. Women have long been regarded as the backbone of the church community, but their extensive and significant contributions are made as lay leaders, not as religious heads of churches. In Baptist Churches for example, women function as evangelists, missionaries, teachers, and choir directors. Due to the significant and fundamental contributions that women have played in bringing people to Christ one can not help but question the old axiom that women should not assume pastoral roles within the church. Moreover, I would posit the idea that contrary to the Baptist credence, it is scripturally dubious and religiously ambiguous whether women should occupy pastoral roles within the church.
During the Protestant Reformation, there was an assembly of Christians who were not content with the Church of England and thus decided to separate from the Roman Catholic Church because of their dissatisfaction. These individuals became known as Separatists. It is historically understood that the Baptist faith emerged out of this assembly. Though there have been various reformations and restructurings within the Baptist denomination most seem to regard the biblical text as truth. The Baptist church has generally ascertained the idea that God inspired biblical text and thus believe in the literal meaning of it. Therefore, most Baptists congregations deny women eligibility for pastoral roles due to infallibility of scriptural writing. The most notable scripture referenced in regards to the outlaw of women pastors is 1 Corinthians 14:34-35 where it states, “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. 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” (KJV). In these scriptures I would agree with the Conservative Baptist viewpoint that it is explicitly stated that women are prohibited from “by law” from even speaking within the church. However, there appears to be much room left for interpretation which causes one to reason that this was an establishment and time period within this Greece-Roman culture where it was necessary to construct commandments in an attempt to regulate the church and maintain order. Not to mention that if one were to take this scripture literally in its truest form; one would deny women the right to even speak within the church, which would only depict the absurdity of such a belief. From the unembellished and literal belief in the bible arise incontestable illogicalities. It is terribly nonsensical to believe in the literal...

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