Saturday, January 17, 2009

Women Teaching And Preaching? Sure!

I'm writing this because I was told eight years ago that women couldn't minister. Didn't I know that women were supposed to be quiet and learn? I was told I could share testimonies on a certain web site but that I could not share with people how to get the same results. Of course I stopped writing immediately. In hind sight I realize that this was what the devil wanted. So I've started writing again.

You see, my dad raised me to believe that I could do anything for a living. I was always trying to help my Dad, whether it was fixing the car or building something downstairs. It was my Dad who suggested I go into Engineering studies at University. My dad believed in me.

In Western society we've come to realize that women can be good engineers, doctors, lawyers and executives. And yes, they can be good preachers. That's why these unfair judgments or shackles hurt so much.

Thank God for moms. She gave me a book titled "Why not Women?" by Loren Cunningham, (the Director of Youth With A Mission) and David Joel Hamilton. That book helped me so much. Husbands get it for your wives. Fathers get it for your daughters. It's that simple. Let me share what impacted me the most, and I didn't read the whole book. (Oops!)

This book helped explain how Paul was a woman's best friend because, in a cultural time when woman were not taught anything, he told the men to teach their wives. "Paul was encouraging the women in their desire to learn. He was urging them not to stay on the sidelines but to equip themselves for full participation in the Body of Christ! These words were a radical break with all the surrounding cultures." (pg 201)

I also found out that in a cultural time when a woman's only expression was to moan or wail in services he asked that they be quiet. (1Cor 14:34) I completely understand this. The women had no freedom to praise and worship or say 'Hallelujah!' or shout 'Amen!' in a service. They were only allowed to "moan or make ululations, which are high-pitched cries." (pg 197) Talk about shackles!

Well, guess what? Jesus took our shackles off two thousand years ago and Paul confirmed this freedom we now have, when he said that 'There is neither Jew nor Greek, there is neither bond nor free, there is neither male nor female: for ye are all one in Christ Jesus." (Gal. 3:28).

So why do men keep putting these shackles on us? Ignorance, insecurity, pride who knows?

It's time we educated ourselves. Time is running out fast and the devil has hamstrung 60% of the body of Christ with this false teaching. Therefore, I am going to make up for lost time.

Fast tract 5 years. I'd started street preaching and was learning by the seat of my pants. A friend of mine told me about his pastor who also street preached and I was so excited to meet him. I finally got the opportunity and you know what? He didn't want to even sit with me for a tea or coffee, because I was a woman preacher.

"Where's your husband?", he asked me. Can you believe it? He asked this in the 21st century no less.

This preacher was referring to 2 Tim 2:12 where it says "But I suffer not a woman to teach,". Paul made this troubling statement and it's been taken out of context for 2,000 years. I am not a Greek scholar, but if you translate the verses properly, and not out of context, the scholars can see that this verse was directed to one woman, who was probably responsible for the heretical teaching in the Ephesian church. (reference pg. 213)

This is also backed up by Paul's words in 2Tim 2:22 "And these things you have heard me say in the presence of many witnesses entrust to reliable [persons, that is, men and women] who will also be qualified to teach others." (pg 221)

Let's go back to this preacher's question about my husband. Now anyone that knows my husband, is aware that he is an introvert. He once told me that if there was an introverts society he'd be the president and the phone number would be unlisted. Face it, not everyone is cut from the same cloth and not everyone is going to be thrilled to go street preaching.

My husband is very happy about me going out and preaching and he gives me lots of current event material to tie in to the gospel message -- but him speak publicly? It's not going to happen without a miracle.

I once brought him up in front of a congregation where I was sharing on evangelism and afterwords he told me not to do that again. All I did was introduce him as "my handsome husband!"

Now you can see why I thought this street preacher was way off the mark. He had a heart to get people saved, God bless him for that. I just would have thought that he'd be happy for some help!

I've learned that if you want to do a good work for the Lord, persecution and opposition will come and sometimes it's surprising which quarter it comes from.

Finally, my advice to you is witness, share, testify and preach about our Lord and His gospel as often as you can. Do not let someone silence you, with their condemning words, like I was. I am going to make up for lost time. I have so many testimonies that I have written down in my journals and I am going to post them on this blog site. Plus, I fully intend to tell you how I got these results. I will share all my bloopers too, because you learn more from your mistakes than your successes, right? Right! Holy Spirit is such an encourager and He is so helpful. When you realize how much you are loved, it's easy to be real and share your bloopers.

Right now, I bless you In Jesus Name with the "spirit of wisdom and understanding, the spirit of counsel and might, the spirit of knowledge and of the fear of the LORD;" (Is.11:2) May you know HIM in a greater way today and every day this year, in Jesus' name!

Till the nets are full,

Brenda Gale Thompson


Karen Steele said...

Brenda, I thought the same thing. There was an evangelist at our chuch not too long ago, that said that God is just looking for obedient people. There are people who hear Him they just aren't being obedient. That spoke something so intense in me. It is so good to see that you are being obedient by writing sbout your personal experiences. Be encouraged!! God Bless You!!

Mary Moss said...

I agree with the previous comment! Obedience is what God requires. That man who spoke against you was dead wrong. The unfortunate thing is that he is not alone in his thinking. Many men AND women agree with him.

I try to be really careful about telling other people what/who God accepts and doesn't accept: I have enough of my own issues that I would not presume to make assumptions on behalf of our Lord:-)

hazelmay said...

Brenda, I only just read this today. Tears are welling up in my eyes. I keep asking, "Give me patience with these insecure men who think women preaching is a threat to their position." It's like Luke Holter was saying on Thursday night... competition and fear and low self esteem causes men to refuse to relent and see the truth and they try to keep women in bondage because... well... we challenge them. We're feisty and fiery and tenacious and they... expect us to stay in the kitchen and bake and be frail and happy to just nod and look cute and dumb. Freeeeeedom! In Jesus' name! The shackles must go! Bless the men, Lord. They don't do it deliberately, but Christians curse each other sometimes and I think sometimes even sickness comes on women because of these curses. So... bless you. I hope you don't mind me sharing this on Facebook. Yeah. I got armour on and... a slicker in case I get peed, pooped and puked on. (Man, my language is eloquent, isn't it?)

Raine said...

Thank you so much! This was an inspiring post, as I have struggled with similar issue on desiring to teach the things of God's Kingdom which bring the spiritual life to those who do not have it, yet have been told that women can't be teachers in any way! So happy to see a light shine in the darkness of confusion on this!