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Guests Question, Bob Answers about...

Women's Role

"Would you receive the Lord's supper from a woman if there are men available?"


In my religious background we wouldn't let women pass the communion down the aisles (while standing), but we allowed them to pass it down the rows (while sitting). What's the difference?

Men don't seem to have a problem with women serving them at the dining table. On what scriptural basis would they be denied to serve in this way also?

Many of our traditional / doctrinal scruples are centered around church buildings and church rituals that early disciples knew nothing of. The buildings and rituals came much later by human design.

"Would you please comment on women serving as deaconesses and pastors?"

Luke 2:36-38, Acts 2:17-18, and 1 Corinthians 11:5 let us know that women were able to use their gifts in public assemblies during the first century.

Some of our confusion about the role of women comes from the ambiguous use of the words "man" and "woman" in some translations when the passages are really talking about the "husband" and "wife" relationship, not men and women generally. Some translations of 1 Corinthians 11:3, for example, read like this: "...the head of every man is Christ, and the head of the woman is man, and the head of Christ is God." However, An Expository Dictionary of New Testament Words by W. E. Vine says this about that verse: "Head is used metaphorically of the authority or direction of God in relation to Christ, of Christ in relation to believing men, of the husband in relation to the wife." Therefore, translations like this are correct: "...the head of every man is Christ, the head of a woman is her husband, and the head of Christ is God" (RSV).

A husband is head of his wife. Men (in general) are not head of women (in general).

Another thing that adds to our confusion is the fact that we are conditioned to view the scriptures through modern institutional glasses. When we see words like minister, deacon, and pastor, we think of titles for the officers of a religious organization, an organization like those found in civil government and secular corporations. But the church of New Testament times was not an organization and Bible writers were not referring to cleric positions. They were writing about the functions of brothers and sisters in the family of God. All Christians are ministers (servants) and deacons (another word for servants), or we should be. And all Christians are priests (1 Peter 2:5). Christians who are more mature in the faith will be leaders / teachers / mentors (pastors, shepherds) among (not over) the flock.

The clergy system quenches the sovereign exercise of the Holy Spirit in the lives of both men and women.

"You didn't address the verse that says women are to be silent. I would like an explanation on that verse."

Theophilus and Brother Context discuss that subject and that verse in Women Be Silent in the Church?

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