As we continue to address the topic of women preaching, we take a look at several articles, one by Owen Strachan, (Senior Fellow of the Council on Biblical Manhood & Womanhood) where he discusses the divine order “grounded in theistic ontology itself, it is the very bedrock of Christian theology and the Christian worldview. You could say it this way: there is order in the home; there is order in the churches; there is order in the world God has made.”
As Senior Fellow of CBMW, his role in part is “to set forth the teachings of the Bible about the complementary differences between men and women, created equally in the image of God, because these teachings are essential for obedience to Scripture and for the health of the family and the church.”
The worrying commentary below is something that we here at CWC have seen on the ‘horizon’ for quite some time now – what can the argument for ordination women eventually lead to?
“The arguments used in support of the ordination of women require the dismissal or “reinterpretation” of specific biblical texts which disallow women in the teaching office. The same is true of arguments for the ordination of divorced persons – and for homosexuals. I am not accusing all proponents of women’s ordination of supporting the ordination of homosexuals. But I am insisting that the basic hermeneutical approach (method of interpreting the Scriptures) behind these arguments has a common core – a relativizing of prohibitive biblical texts in the name of “liberation,” whether of women, or divorced persons, or homosexuals.” Albert Mohler (Link)
Owen Strachan writes:
In the beginning, God made the heavens and the earth. Many evangelicals know the words of Genesis 1:1 by heart–but fewer have recognized the full ontological and metaphysical significance of this verse’s claim. In the beginning, Genesis teaches us, God not only made matter, he made order. In creating the cosmos ex nihilo, he ordered it–that is, he gave form and structure and coherence and beauty and symmetry to it. Order is not incidental to Christian doctrine; order is central. God is the maker and ruler of all things; the creation is distinct from him, yet exists by the super-sustenance of his Son (Colossians 1:17); the world in which we dwell is not characterized in fundamental terms by randomness and disorder, but by divine design.
All this matters greatly for our understanding of men and women, those who image the Lord (Genesis 1:26-27). The man is created first in the Old Testament, and possesses what the New Testament will call headship over his wife. Adam is constituted the leader of his home; he is given authority in it, authority that is shaped in a Christlike way as the biblical story unfolds. According to the apostle Paul, a godly husband does not lord his role over his wife, but rather sees his headship in cruciform terms. He dies to himself over and over in order to love his wife and children well (Ephesians 5:22-33). This does not mean that he fails to exercise actual on-the-ground leadership or make decisions; it means that he constantly seeks to shepherd his wife and family so that they will flourish in Christ. On the basis of a man’s domestic leadership, men are called to provide spiritual leadership and protection of the church (1 Timothy 2:9-15). Elders preach, teach, and shepherd the flock of God; only men are called to the office of elder, and only men who excel as heads of their wives and children are to be considered as possible candidates for eldership (1 Timothy 3:1-7; Titus 1:5-9).
Preaching Order in an Age That Despises it
The preceding (fleshed out in my forthcoming book Reenchanting Humanity) gives voice to the order of God’s world. There is physical order in the cosmos; there is also social order, and spiritual order. There are things that are right based on God’s creative design, and there are things that are wrong. It is right for men to lead their homes, and put their lives on the line when their family members are endangered, and work hard to be the financial pillar of their loved ones. It is right for women to be distinctively feminine, bear and raise children as God allows, submit to and support their husbands per 1 Peter 3, and serve their churches in ways that use their gifts. Living out these realities is good and glorious, and shows us the beauty of the Christian worldview over against secular conceptions of the sexes.
Source: Owen Strachan,’Thought Life’, Patheos, https://www.patheos.com/blogs/thoughtlife/2019/05/divine-order-in-a-chaotic-age-on-women-preaching/#disqus_thread. Published May 7, 2019. (Accessed May 11, 2019.)
Our next article:
Beth Moore goes off like a bottle rocket:
Pastor Gabriel Hughes writes:
In response to Owen Strachan’s article, as reported by Ps. Gabriel Hughes on May 10, 2019 – ‘Beth Moore went “off like a bottle rocket.” Her words. What was the thing that set her off? An article by Dr. Owen Strachan of Midwestern Baptist Theological Seminary, in which he argued from Scripture that God has appointed men to be the overseers of the preaching and teaching in the church, a role He has not granted to women.’
Pastors are to be men—tested, approved, and qualified according to Scripture. The Spirit of God is clear that women are not to have teaching authority over the men in the church (1 Timothy 2:11-12) pointing to the order of creation (v.13-14) and the Law (1 Corinthians 14:34-35). This applies to all people, in all cultures, at all times.
Lest that develop into any feelings of superiority, to be a pastor is to be a servant. In fact, it’s to be a servant of servants. Jesus said to His disciples, “If anyone would be first, he must be last of all and servant of all” (Mark 9:35). Again, He said, “If I then, your Lord and teacher, have washed your feet, you also ought to wash one another’s feet. For I have given you an example, that you also should do just as I have done to you” (John 13:14-15). As He said to Peter, “Feed my sheep” (John 22:17).
This is not a fight for the best seat at the table. A pastor must serve. The primary role in that service is to oversee the preaching and teaching in the church. Of course, all men and women in the church are called to serve. Women can even teach. Get this: they are commanded to teach! (See Titus 2:3-5.) But that doesn’t mean you hand them the pulpit. God has ordained specifically men for the role of pastor. On this point the Bible is unequivocally clear—from creation to Law to living in the new covenant.
Oh, but Beth Moore will have none of that. In a response to Dr. Strachan on Twitter of all places, Mrs. Moore openly stated the following:
Owen, I am going to say this with as much respect & as much self restraint as I can possibly muster. I would be terrified to be a woman you’d approve of. And I would have wasted 40 years of my life encouraging women to come to know and love Jesus through the study of Scripture.
One wonders what she would have said if she wasn’t exercising self-restraint! Beth Moore is “terrified to be a woman you’d approve of.” What an insult to Dr. Strachan’s wife. Contrary to Beth’s overreaction, Dr. Strachan was not telling Mrs. Moore women can’t teach women. Strachan would praise such an effort (if what Beth Moore was teaching was actually sound docrine). He was saying what the Bible says: women can’t be pastors teaching in the congregation of the church proper.
Source: Gabriel Hughes,’The Midwest Baptist’, https://pastorgabehughes.blogspot.com/2019/05/beth-moore-goes-off-like-bottle-rocket.html?m=1&fbclid=IwAR1oqxw-DP5-_CX4G-wBunKLNLdXgSA93RIKZBVAmrZ89-0TRxQd1w10Ino. Published May 10,2019. (Accessed May 11, 2019.)
Beth Moore, Do You Have Your Own Rule Book?
Cody Libolt writes:
I write this letter both “about” and “to” Beth Moore, in a spirit of pleading, as I would were Mrs. Moore my own mother (1 Timothy 5:2). On May 7th 2019, Dr. Owen Strachan of Midwestern Baptist Theological Seminary published an article Divine Order in a Chaotic Age: On Women Preaching.
Strachan explained the biblical parameters for the role of men and women in marriage and the church. He pointed out that Scripture (and a long history of Scripture interpreted rightly) have ruled out women from teaching or preaching — roles reserved for church elders, who must be men.
Strachan’s article seemed to miff the nationally known lady-preacher Beth Moore, partly because Strachan took issue with Moore’s recent unmasking in regard to her view on lady-preachers.
Source: Cody Libolt, https://medium.com/christian-intellectual/beth-moore-do-you-have-your-own-rule-book-9ad3d2ad3e65?fbclid=IwAR3KbbDo9M_RTfLajDHxsHGDRw4-uJfUDPevGwmZSlH0Ex99ZNP_p-ytUE4. Published May 10, 2019. (Accessed May 11, 2019.)
There is no doubt that godly women continue to fulfill a very important God-ordained role in the body of Christ. Just as we see in the divine order of the Godhead there is a divine order in God’s outworking of His plan for the church and the very special role that women play in that order.
“Men and women stand as equals before God, both bearing the image of God Himself. However, without making one inferior to the other, God calls upon both men and women to fulfill the roles and responsibilities specifically designed for them, a pattern that can be seen even in the Godhead (1 Cor. 11:3). In fulfilling the divinely given roles taught in the New Testament, women are able to realize their full potential because they are following the plan of their own Creator and Designer. Only in obedience to Him and His design will women truly be able, in the fullest sense, to give glory to God.” (Link)
For some excellent questions and answers on this important topic, check out this resource at carm.org:
Email all comments and questions to firstname.lastname@example.org