Why I Can Never Be A Pastor

I love to teach. I have taught Sunday School for years to adults, both men and women. While I loved it, teaching that is, it made me totally uncomfortable. Totally. I taught men and women alone, and have been in partner/teacher teams with men, once with my husband. We would alternate Sundays. On my Sunday to teach, when the women were not there or late, I would feel compelled to explain that I stood before them under the authority of the Pastor, not that they protested. It was solely my level of uncomfortableness.

Why was I so uncomfortable? Hasn’t God gifted me to teach? Didn’t God want me to use my gifts for his glory? Yes and yes. So what was it? It was this:

Let the woman learn in silence with all subjection. 12 But I |permit| not a woman to teach, nor to usurp authority over the man, but to be in silence. 13 For Adam was first formed, then Eve. 14 And Adam was not deceived, but the woman, being deceived, was in the transgression. 15 Notwithstanding, she shall be saved in childbearing, if they continue in faith, and |love| and holiness with sobriety. I Timothy 2:11-15 KJV

Yes, this scripture has haunted me, convicted me. For me, there was no getting around it, it is clear. In the church, I should not be teaching men. I am forbidden to teach men, for that would be exercising authority over men which was not given to women. That is why I can never be a preacher or pastor, not that I have ever desired that role. I have not.

But although I know many women who may protest this, I don’t see it as an indictment against women. God does use women. I don’t believe this diminishes the value of women as I stated in my last post.

Women have been used in very significant ways all throughout the Bible. There is Esther, Abigail, Rahab, Jael, Ruth, Naomi, Deborah, Hannah, Mary and so many more both in the Old and New Testament. Women are equal to men spiritually, but we have different functions, roles.

Now I know that equality hasn’t always been; just in America, women used to be denied  the right to vote. But God has always counted us as equal.

…there is neither male nor female; for ye are all one in Christ Jesus. 29 And if ye be Christ’s, then are ye Abraham’s seed, and heirs according to the promise. Galatians 3:28b-29 KJV

Pastor John MacArthur did an excellent sermon series on this:  God’s High Calling On Women. The sermon I’ve included is part 3 in the series that specifically looks at women’s role in the church. In this, he lays out through the scriptures how God has always viewed women, and used women. (Did you know that in the Old Testament that women were able to take the Nazarite vow? I didn’t.) In Part 4  of his series, he addresses the arguments that have been used for women as pastors and demonstrates through the scriptures how it fails the support of scripture.

I recognize that in today’s culture  we view women as being capable of doing anything a man can do. I believe that women can do a lot of things that men can do. We currently have a woman who is running for President of the United States. But in the church, for whom Christ is the head, God ordained a specific order. God had a purpose in his design.

So, did God gift me with a gift to teach? Yes, and there is room for me to teach. Titus II calls the older women to teach younger women. Our gifts are not wasted. My gift is not wasted. When I was a young mom, I tried to raise my children by the Word of God. I have been able to share with women my journey and share the gospel, and have tried to live out my commitment to God.

I believe that how I live, and how I respond to what God says in his Word will speak louder than my gift.

Every good gift and every perfect gift is from above, and cometh down from the Father of lights, with whom is no variableness, neither shadow of turning. James 1:17 KJV

We, I need to esteem the Giver of the gift, more than the gift itself. The way that I do that is to use the gift in the manner he has ordained; in other words, obedience.

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26 thoughts on “Why I Can Never Be A Pastor

    1. Thank you so much. Just heard in our sermon this morning that our first activity with God was listening. We must hear, obey and teach, and I guess blogging is my way of sharing what God teaches me through his Word. Thanks for reading!

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  1. Not a topic a lot of people like to discuss, but I think it is important. You are correct in saying God has established an order to things – and it isn’t up to us to choose that order. I do believe there are some women called to be speakers, but never a role of pastor. Thanks for the post.

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    1. I know it is a “hot topic”, but because I know many churches haved caved to the loud voices versus submitting to the scriptures clear teaching. I agree and believe that women can minister to women in a great way. Thanks so much for reading and letting me know your thoughts on this issue.

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  2. You love the controversies. 🙂 That scripture is indeed challenging, but I have always been mindful that Paul makes it clear that such was his rule, not God’s (“I don’t permit . . .”). He doesn’t say that God forbade women to teach or speak in church. If that were the case, why were there female prophetesses? We see Paul doing similar in 1 Co 7, where he distinguishes between rules from God and rules from Paul (“I, not the Lord” versus “not I, but the Lord.”). Paul also states that it is better for men and women not to marry and to abstain from sexual relations (1 Co 7), when God, to the contrary, makes it plain that men and women were made to marry and to become “one flesh.”

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      1. I will listen to MacArthur as soon as I get a chance (I’m at work). I’m not necessarily saying it was cultural (although it could have been), and I don’t dismiss what Paul said (he was inspired, as you noted). But when Paul clarifies that he is saying something as opposed to it coming directly from God, there is a discernment issue at play. For example, I mentioned Paul encouraging followers not to marry or have sexual relations (but if refraining from sexual relations was too big of a burden, then one should marry); yet we know clearly that God intended woman for man and man for woman, that they be united in marriage and become one flesh, and procreate. So why the seeming contradiction between Paul and God? How could it be better for us not to marry according to Paul when God intended us to marry? My point here is that Paul was making recommendations on how to deal with sin rather than teaching what God intended for us. Paul wasn’t rejecting marriage; rather he was noting all of the entanglements marriage involves and said we would be better off avoiding those entanglements. Even the disciples remarked to Jesus that it would be better not to marry. Matthew 19:10. But that doesn’t mean marriage is wrong; in fact, marriage is a reflection of Christ’s union with the Church. So, I don’t take Paul’s statements on marriage as condemnation of marriage. Similarly, I don’t take Paul’s statements on women in church as God’s law.

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      2. We must agree to disagree. There were no female priests, no female writers of the Bible, no female Apostles. I Timothy 2:11-15 Paul explains the reason for this is that it was the woman who was deceived, not Adam. But it’s not just here it’s in Ephesians, Corinthians, I Peter 3. It is all about order and function. God has a hierarchy. Having it does not diminish any of the parties. Jesus is still equal with God, though in Philippians 2 he submitted to God. So, I will just leave it at we disagree. The sermon may help, both Part 3 and 4. They are only about 22 minutes long.

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      1. I believe there is a difference between revelation and discernment. Parts of scripture are direct revelation from God (10 Commandments, for example). Other parts of scripture demonstrate men applying God’s law to circumstances on which God has not spoken directly (remaining married to an unbelieving spouse, for example-1 Co 7:12). While the latter is “profitable,” it is not necessarily what God requires. God would not tell us not to get married as Paul did, for example. Instead, He would tell us to marry as He intended, love our spouse, submit to him/her, and produce Godly children to further His Kingdom. When confronted with the issue of divorce, Jesus remarked that such was “not what God intended in the beginning.” Yet Moses allowed divorces (as does the Church today) in response to sin. But that doesn’t mean we condone divorce because Moses was inspired.

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    1. I’m sorry but doing as God leads you is how we got here. People think God has led them. I believe that we have to do what the scriptures say. That is obedience. But perhaps you are saying the same thing, but just in case. My two cents. 🙂

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  3. That was nicely written. I happen to be in a work where we agree with what you have said a 100 percent. I won’t every forget something that happened pretty early in my life as a believer. Our adult Sunday school class is men and women together, but always had been taught by one of the men. In fact about three men rotated in the teaching. One Sunday morning, a couple ot the man had been called out for work, and for whatever reason the other wasn’t there. It was just me and a class full of the ladies. When it was time for us to start, I noticed they were all looking at me! Finally my wife leaned over and said…”Um…you are going to have to teach us.”

    I was scared to death! But, as it turns out, that was God’s call for me to become a teacher, and I have not looked back sense.

    By they way, none of the ladies felt in the least slighted by this, as they understood that is just how it is. It doesn’t mean they are not important and equal, because they are.

    Thanks for this post.

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  4. Oh I agree sweetie! When we are in Nicaragua it is hard to explain to He men that I am there to teach women only! They get so little teaching that they want it all!!!! Sometimes the men will come in and I just have teach anyway knowing that God has it!!! I don’t understand how people can read the scriptures and not Obey!

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