Summary: In Christ God has made man and woman equal in the blessings from Christ, yet in worship and leadership Each sex has been given specific roles.
GUIDELINES IN THE WORSHIP OF GOD
(Part Two: The Role of Men and Women in Worship)
Dorn Ridge Church Of Christ June 02, 20
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1.) Most of this second chapter deals with the handling of worship services, and what was to be done, or not done in the church.
A.) Though the entire chapter deals with many aspects of worship within the church, I have divided this message into two parts:
aa.) Two weeks ago, we looked at the significance the early church placed on prayer in our worship.
ab.) Today, I want to examine the second half of this topic of worship dealing with the roles God has assigned to Men and Women in regards to worship and leadership within the Church.
2.) This passage of Scripture contains many controversial topics that are often left unaddressed.
A.) Because of the controversial nature of this message, I have probably laboured as much on this sermon as what I would normally do over 3-4 sermons.
B.) In preparing this message, I have read a great deal of material written over the course of the past 2,000 years on this.
ba.) I have read statements I would label as male chauvinism on the subject, as well as statements that would be described completely feminist.
bb.) To the best of my ability, I have tried to not lean toward either of these extremes, but to be as fair to the text as I am able to be, true to what God has given in His Word.
D.) Even still, I am certain that not everyone will be in agreement with the conclusions I am making.
I. THE CHURCH IS TO BE A PLACE WHERE MEN HONOUR GOD BY LIFTING UP HOLY HANDS IN PRAYER.
-- 1Timothy 2:8
1.) Lifting up holy hands in prayer was a common and ancient practice.
A.) Today in our churches we tend to not be comfortable with this practice.
aa.) At times someone will come in and worship with us and raise their hands as we go to God in prayer.
ab.) Though we have quietly accepted it, most of us have not felt completely comfortable with that practice.
ac.) I want to state this morning that even if we are not completely comfortable there is nothing wrong with it, and it is an acceptable practice in prayer.
B.) To be honest, this is the only place in the entire New Testament where we are told to do this in our times of worship.
C.) Having said that, it is a practice that was very common in the Old Testament Scriptures.
ca.) When Moses went before Pharaoh, God had instructed him to raise his hands in prayer, and that is what he had done.
caa.) Exod. 9: 22,29
cb.) When King Solomon dedicated the temple of God, he raised his hands to heaven in prayer.
cbb.) 1 Kings 8:22-23[ His actual prayer goes on till verse 53]
cc.) Many other passages as well speak of the same act of reverence in prayer.
cca.) Is. 1:15 “When you spread out your hands in prayer, I hide my eyes from you;”
cca-1.) Certainly, God in this passage addressed it in a negative manner because of their attitude toward him, but we still see of the practice of raising hands in prayer.
ccb.)Nehemiah 8:6 “6 Ezra praised the Lord, the great God; and all the people lifted their hands and responded, “Amen! Amen!” Then they bowed down and worshiped the Lord with their faces to the ground.”
cd.) In the New Testament, when the ministry of Jesus had been completed, the final act of reverence Jesus did for the disciples was to pray for them, and he did this with his hands raised towards God as He ascended into heaven.
cad.) Luke 24:50-51
B.) This practice seems to have developed in the offering of sacrifices and incense to God.
ba.) As the sacrifices were being offered to God, they would be lifted up and offered to God, as prayer would be made for the sacrifice.
bb.) From there, the practice of lifting up of hands became a common and acceptable stance to be taken in times of prayer.
bc.) There are certainly many passages of Scripture which deal with this, and which we could look at, but I am going to choose to refrain from that in order to focus more on the central theme of the text of the role of men versus women within the Church.
2.) The lifting up of holy hands in prayer is to be taken in contrast to the descriptions of women in the following verses.
A.) When you look at the passage of Scripture before us, the Greek language definitely shows man in this eighth verse, and women in verse 9-12.