Church Planting, Leadership, Pastors, Sermon Illustrations, Uncategorized

Why Women are Invited to Serve in Leadership at One Church

Shhh Women

One Church invites women to serve in church leadership, including serving on the church board and preaching sermons.

This is not liberal.

It is normal.

I’m not a radical feminist. The truth is, I don’t crusade for issues of the day, and I don’t make political statements publicly. Enough churches do that. It’s just that I’m a member of mainstream society on this issue.
Here is a link to a sermon I gave entitled “God’s Daughters.”The church I pastor, One Church, is a mainstream, nondenominational church that highly values the Bible. However, we value the whole Bible, not just the two verses that seem to prohibit women from leading or speaking in public. We are also interested in what the other verses say about the role of women.

Half of the churches in 2013 America, however, do not allow women to serve in any position of “authority” over men. Don’t believe me? As an interesting test, visit the websites of churches in your area. If the website lists members of the “Elder Board” (the governing board of the church) look at their names. Notice that the names are all male names. Why is this?

It’s not an accident.

Some churches attempt to hide their theology that women cannot serve in church leadership. The pastor of a large church in my area claims to be passionate about opposing injustices toward women. Yet, he holds to this same theology that women cannot have “authority” over men. For example, the “Elder Board” of his church consists of only males. Intelligent people have no problem seeing through the veil.

My wife is a schoolteacher who was raised in a pastor’s home and possesses great knowledge of the Bible. She is perfectly capable of preaching sermons. My sister is a lawyer. She could argue a case in front of the Supreme Court, but she can’t preach in half of the churches in America. In 2013, this is just odd.

Margaret Thatcher, a staunch conservative, served as Prime Minister of Great Britain in the 1980s and was a close friend of Ronald Reagan. Both Sarah Palin and Hillary Clinton have had massive influences in politics.

Allowing women to serve in leadership is not liberal.

It is normal.

The theology of Complementarianism is an oddity in 21st century America. People who hold to the view that women have no place in church leadership form a small Christian subculture that has already been left behind by mainstream American society.

Some people might think that a male pastor who supports women in church leadership has given up his “man card.” Here’s my answer to that. My wife and I may have a daughter someday.

I want my daughter to have all of the opportunities that life can afford her. I want her to know that she fulfill her dreams and that there is nothing off limits to her because she happened to be born a certain gender.

In other words, I’m man enough to stick up for my daughter.

Leadership, Pastors

Women in Ministry

My grandmother was a “layspeaker” in the United Methodist Church. That meant that when the pastor was away, she gave the sermon. She was also an incredible example to me of an authentic follower of Christ. She was a leader both men and women respected.

An uncle of mine who served as a pastor in a different church told her more than once, beginning in the 1970’s, that she should stop preaching sermons because women were not called by God to preach.

She told me that she struggled with this for years. Sometimes, she would feel guilty for preaching. Other times, she knew that God was working through her. Finally, she came to the place where she accepted the call and didn’t question it anymore, but it was a tough journey.

Supporting women in ministry does not make a person a flaming liberal or radical feminist. My grandmother is now deceased, but I have a wife, a mother, several aunts, a sister, female friends, and maybe a future daughter. I want them to have the same opportunities I have in life.

I also know that the Bible is full of stories of women preaching and leading.

Check out, Christians for Biblical Equality. I’m proud that the seminary I attend, Ashland Theological Seminary, was the first seminary to join CBE.