The forbidden 'women' questions

"If the very expressing of them makes me a feminist, then so be it"

Posted on October 15, 2015

This quote is 23 years old and yet these questions are still never discussed seriously within the churches that should be discussing it.

"Why is it that there seem to be different rules for Christian women in Scotland and for women from the same churches who go overseas? If it is a clear matter of biblical principle that women may not teach men, for example, how is it that the majority of Third-World church-planting in the last hundred years has been pioneered by women whom God has seen fit to bless in their teaching and discipling? Why was it that God brought revival to several areas of China through the ministry of women when there were plenty of godly men available? Why is it, if it is all so crystal clear, that many Third-World Christians see it all quite differently and say that since Calvary and Pentecost the important issue is gift, not gender?

And what do you say to the Scottish man who would under no circumstances have a woman teach in church, but may allow her to 'report' in the church hall, or will listen to her mediated via a tape recorder? What happens when a woman, scripturally well taught and spiritually mature, is expected to listen to a man making a complete hash of things, distorting the meaning of the Word and misleading the people?

Is it really necessary to use exclusive male language in talking about the Lord's people? Is it not questionable to describe God in terms that inevitably project him as a larger than life exclusively male being?

If Acts and the Epistles show women working shoulder to shoulder with the men, why cannot that be so today? Why is the radical nature of the Lord's dealings with women not taken more seriously? Why are three exegetically hard passages from 1 Corinthians and 1 Timothy always thrown at me as simple and decisive, even though that means that other extensive portions of Scripture no longer make sense?

The questions tumble out. If the very expressing of them makes me a feminist, then so be it."