The bible is clear sisters: We are not to teach or have authority over men. Being a prophetess is not the same as being a pastor or teacher. They are three different gifts. Women are taught in scripture to teach women, “for Adam was created first, and Eve was the one who was deceived.”
And I do not permit a woman to teach or to have authority over a man, but to be in silence. For Adam was formed first, then Eve. And Adam was not deceived, but the woman being deceived, fell into transgression. (I Timothy 2:12-14)
People who say otherwise are definitely twisting scripture and trying to make it seem like it was only for that period of time (which Paul even addresses immediately after saying women should keep quiet in the church when he says: “Or did the word of God come originally from you? Or was it you only that it reached? If anyone thinks himself to be a prophet or spiritual, let him acknowledge that the things which I write to you are the commandments of the Lord (I Corinthians 14:36-37).
If it were true that Paul was only speaking to those in that time, we can say the same exact thing for ALL of scripture because it was all written thousands of years ago!
Just because a woman cannot teach or have authority over a man does not mean she is not equal to him in God’s eyes. This not being equal because of differences is a mindset of feminism. They think equality means being able to do every function a man can do. But what this difference in roles means is just that: a difference in roles, not value.
Not having the same functions in the church does not mean we are not equal. Then we can say the pastor is more important than the prophet, or the elder is more important than the teacher and thus, we are being impartial as James says, showing favoritism when God does not have favorites.
There are diversities of gifts, but the same Spirit. There are differences of ministries, but the same Lord. And there are diversities of activities, but it is the same God who works all in all. But the manifestation of the Spirit is given to each one for the profit of all … For as the body is one and has many members, but all the members of that one body, being many, are one body, so also is Christ. For by one Spirit we were all baptized into one body— whether Jews or Greeks, whether slaves or free—and have all been made to drink into one Spirit. For in fact the body is not one member but many. If the foot should say, “Because I am not a hand, I am not of the body,” is it therefore not of the body? And if the ear should say, “Because I am not an eye, I am not of the body,” is it therefore not of the body? If the whole body were an eye, where would be the hearing? If the whole were hearing, where would be the smelling? But now God has set the members, each one of them, in the body just as He pleased. And if they were all one member, where would the body be? … And the eye cannot say to the hand, “I have no need of you”; nor again the head to the feet, “I have no need of you.” No, much rather, those members of the body which seem to be weaker are necessary. And those members of the body which we think to be less honorable, on these we bestow greater honor; and our unpresentable parts have greater modesty, but our presentable parts have no need. But God composed the body, having given greater honor to that part which lacks it, that there should be no schism in the body, but that the members should have the same care for one another … Are all apostles? Are all prophets? Are all teachers? Are all workers of miracles? Do all have gifts of healings? Do all speak with tongues? Do all interpret? (I Corinthians 12:4-7, 12-19, 21-25, 29-30)
The scripture makes it clear that even the seemingly less significant members and functions of the church are significant and equally important to God. And a woman’s role IS significant. We are helpers, supporters. But if we were supposed to head and lead the church, why did Christ only have twelve MEN as His Apostles? He had women who followed Him and “supported Him” financially. But they were not the ones who He chose to head the church. Also, every time Paul wrote concerning the qualifications of elders and deacons (the leaders in the church), they had to be men who were faithfully married to one wife, managing their households well. He never mentions women.
This is true equality: seeing the value in our different roles, what we each bring to the table for the other’s benefit, and rejoicing in our God-given differences, esteeming no one higher than another. In fact, I think many churches treat the head pastor with partiality and as if he’s above everyone else rather than a fellow brother, which eventually aids in his downfall. But that’s for another blog at another time.
We see the result of a woman taking authority over a man and leading him: Eve had good intentions but led her husband into sin! The bible thus warns women not to do what Eve did but to be submissive and let men lead while we support.
If you’re struggling with this simple truth, I ask you to really humble yourself and pray. Have the mindset that if this is indeed God’s will, you will trust that He is good and has good reason for it and that He loves you all the same. I pray you are not offended by His truth, but transformed by it in the name of Yeshua.