Summary: The topic of Deborah’s leadership very obviously leads us to reflect on the topic of women and the roles they are allowed or not allowed to play in God’s kingdom.
Dakota Community Church
October 5, 2014
The topic of Deborah’s leadership very obviously leads us to reflect on the topic of women and the roles they are allowed or not allowed to play in God’s kingdom.
Here I will attempt to present the two most common doctrinal view points on the subject and end by stating where DCC stands on the issue.
1. What is Complementarianism?
Complementarianism is a theological view held by some in Judaism, Christianity, and Islam, that men and women have different but complementary roles and responsibilities in marriage, family life, religious leadership, and elsewhere. The word "complementary" and its cognates are currently used to denote this view. For some of those whose complementarian view is biblically prescribed, these separate roles preclude women from specific functions of ministry within the Church. It assigns leadership roles to men and support roles to women, based on certain biblical passages. One of its precepts is that while women may assist in the decision making process, the ultimate authority for the decision is the purview of the male in marriage, courtship, and in the polity of the church. (Wikipedia )
Complementarianism is the view that males and females complement each other in their different roles and duties. In the context of Christianity, men are to be leaders in the church and the home--where women are not. Likewise, women are to assist the husband in raising children and expanding the kingdom of God.
Christian complementarianism does not see women as inferior or men as superior. Instead, it sees them as being identical in nature but different in function and role. For example, women are to bear children--where men are not. This obvious biological difference is a complementarian necessity within the family. Likewise, men are to lead their families with Godly direction, and the women are to support their husbands in their leadership.
Therefore, in complementarianism, when we look at what the Bible says about the difference of roles in leadership in the church, we find that women are not to teach or exercise authority over men (1 Tim. 2:12 ) based upon the created order (1 Tim. 2:13). Likewise, elders are to be male (1 Tim. 3:2; Titus 1:6-9). This difference of authoritative structure is not based on culture but on the fact that Adam was created first. (by Matt Slick - CARM.org )
I do not permit a woman to teach or to exercise authority over a man; rather, she is to remain quiet. 13 For Adam was formed first, then Eve.
Therefore an overseer must be above reproach, the husband of one wife, sober-minded, self-controlled, respectable, hospitable, able to teach,
…appoint elders in every town as I directed you— 6 if anyone is above reproach, the husband of one wife, and his children are believers and not open to the charge of debauchery or insubordination. For an overseer,[e] as God's steward, must be above reproach. He must not be arrogant or quick-tempered or a drunkard or violent or greedy for gain, 8 but hospitable, a lover of good, self-controlled, upright, holy, and disciplined. 9 He must hold firm to the trustworthy word as taught, so that he may be able to give instruction in sound[f] doctrine and also to rebuke those who contradict it.
Complementarianism is the teaching that masculinity and femininity are ordained by God and that men and women are created to complement, or complete, each other. Complementarians believe that the gender roles found in the Bible are purposeful and meaningful distinctions that, when applied in the home and church, promote the spiritual health of both men and women. Embracing the divinely ordained roles of men and woman furthers the ministry of God’s people and allows men and women to reach their God-given potential. (www.gotquestions.org )
So God created man in his own image, in the image of God he created him; male and female he created them.
Then the Lord God said, “It is not good that the man should be alone; I will make him a helper fit for him.”
2. Clear passages dictate.
When trying to discern what the Bible teaches on any given topic the student is to interpret the unclear passages in Scripture in light of the clear.
Though all Scripture is God breathed, every passage is not equally clear (easy to understand).
…just as our beloved brother Paul also wrote to you according to the wisdom given him, 16 as he does in all his letters when he speaks in them of these matters. There are some things in them that are hard to understand, which the ignorant and unstable twist to their own destruction, as they do the other Scriptures.
When determining what the Bible teaches on a particular topic, find the passages which CLEARLY address the issue at hand and make this the starting point of your doctrine, rather than an obscure (or less than clear) passage.