Women ministers, an exploration

Discussion in 'Sacraments, Sacred Rites, and Holy Orders' started by kestrel, Nov 25, 2012.

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Do you think that women can follow these vocations/roles/whatchamacallits? Click for yea

  1. Choristers / Choir Leaders

    28 vote(s)
    96.6%
  2. Church Wardens and church council members

    25 vote(s)
    86.2%
  3. Teachers (Sunday school and the like)

    28 vote(s)
    96.6%
  4. Lay Readers

    25 vote(s)
    86.2%
  5. Deaconess

    25 vote(s)
    86.2%
  6. Priests

    10 vote(s)
    34.5%
  7. Bishops

    9 vote(s)
    31.0%
  8. It's complicated (post away)

    3 vote(s)
    10.3%
Multiple votes are allowed.
  1. Scottish Knight

    Scottish Knight Well-Known Member

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    anyone else wonder about hermaphrodites? :think:
     
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  2. Lowly Layman

    Lowly Layman Well-Known Member

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    Sequential or Congential? I wonder about that probably more than I should...but not in regards to Orders. LOL :D
     
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  3. Scottish Knight

    Scottish Knight Well-Known Member

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    haha indeed :D
     
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  4. Jeff F

    Jeff F Well-Known Member

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    I just returned from a week long vacation at Disney World, and to say that the crowd was diverse, would be an understatement. The two largest and most obvious groups were Hasidic Jews and Muslims, and while their theology is non comparable, their treatment of women is very similar. The Muslim women were covered in plain black gowns from head to toe, while their men wore designer jeans, Nike tennis shoes, and bling eye-wear. The Jewish women mostly had long blue jean skirts and black mesh hair nets, but some of their men in addition to modern clothing, had Yamika's with sports logos on them! My point is that middle eastern culture is extremely male-centrinc, and this prejudice is carried over in the Christian world. I see Jesus removing the man made barriers and allowing the Holy Spirit to have free reign. Someone on here made an excellent point that the Archbishop of Canterbury is appointed by a woman.

    Jeff
     
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  5. Lowly Layman

    Lowly Layman Well-Known Member

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    I heard recently that Luther's way of delineating between the rules and mores of the old testament that should be followed and those which should be set aside for Christians was a pretty simple one. If a rule in the Old Testament was redeclared by Jesus in the new testament and was agreeable with natural law, it was still binding upon Christians. It reminds me of incorporation amendments in a number of state Constitutions in the US where English common law is declared in force up to the date of independence and insofar as it does not conflict with either federal law, any statutes subsequently passed, or the constitutions themselves. I can agree with this.

    It becomes then, very hard for me, to use OT rules not ratified by Christ to bind Christians, especially in areas where we are discussing rules pertaining to rites and worship styles, rather than faith. I think this is true with women and Holy Orders.
     
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  6. Toma

    Toma Well-Known Member Anglican

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    Lowly Layman, if only Christ had to reiterate an O.T. Law for it to remain in ordinance, do we not prohibit homosexual acts based on Paul's condemnation of them? There's a whole spiral of things connected to this biblical-womens'-ordination issue.

    By the way, Christ said that not one jot nor tittle will pass from the Law - till all be fulfilled (in Matthew). The only time I can think of the LORD saying "it is fulfilled", or anything like that, is the dereliction upon the Cross in John.
     
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  7. Lowly Layman

    Lowly Layman Well-Known Member

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    Good point, but Christ did tell us to remain sexually chaste and discussed what a marriage was and how it was to be regarded. He didn't discuss pedophilia, necrophilia, bestiality, etc., nor did Paul, yet all of thes fall outside of the boundaries of Christ's definition of what is chaste and allowable within the lifelong commitment of one man and one woman, thus it is illicit. For the record, Paul never mentioned homosexuality either...since the term was one invented by psychologists only relativlely recently. He condemned sodomy, ie unnatural relations, which is broader than homosexuality. In Romans, he spoke of God giving those who would not honor God over to unnatural passions, such as homosexuality, but in that passage he was condemning those who were condemning of them.

    In regards to women, Christ makes no statement one way or the other. However, after the resurrection, he reveals himself to women first. And gives them the distinct honor of being the first to preach the Resurrection (to the apostles no less!). Why is it fitting for them to proclaim to the church "He is risen!" but not "The Body of our Lord Jesus Christ, which was given for thee, preserve thy body and soul unto everlasting life. Take and eat this in remembrance that Christ died for thee, and feed on him in thy heart by faith, with thanksgiving"?
    As far as the "it is finished" statement. I read that to mean exactly what you said: up to the point of Christ's finished work on the Cross, the Old Covenant remained in effect. Christ did not do away with or reject the validity of any of the precepts of the Law, as if they had no power or authority, rather he fulfilled them by his death and resurrection. That is why he said it is finished on the Cross. The Old Law was completely fulfilled. Being fulfilled, it was set aside and a New Law and an Eternal Covenant was effected, the Law and Covenant of Grace. At least that's how I read it. Perhaps you see it different?
     
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  8. Toma

    Toma Well-Known Member Anglican

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    I accept your points about the Law. My only reply is threefold:

    1. Saying "the LORD is risen!" was not preaching, but informing the Leaders (the men) that something momentous had happened. To conflate a few excited, breathless words, in a unique moment of history, with apostolic authority makes no sense to me.

    2. Christ revealed Himself to women first so as to confound that age, which averred from the witness of women as inherently untrustworthy. This one action of our LORD immediately proves that He was not somehow psychologically bound to His Culture.

    3. Ephesians 5:23-24 "The husband is the head of the wife, even as Christ is the head of the church... as the church is subject unto Christ, so let the wives be to their own husbands in every thing."

    To undermine the fact of the ontological difference between the sexes is to overthrow the whole created order. This has nothing to do with the Law, my friend, but with the very composition of the Universe itself.
     
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  9. Celtic1

    Celtic1 Well-Known Member

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    Now that is an argument based on scripture, reason, and tradition, without resort to insults. I like that. I may not agree with your conclusion, but I can admit that you have presented valid grounds for it. Thank you.
     
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  10. Celtic1

    Celtic1 Well-Known Member

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    I liked your presentation up until that sentence.
     
  11. Stalwart

    Stalwart Well-Known Member Anglican

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    Because the first is merely an evangelism. It is open and possible to lay people. We can and have lay readers and lay bible teachers who are women. The second is a sacrament of the Body and Blood; it can be done only by those who are legitimately ordained bishops and priests of the Church, for it is an instrument of grace, and that is left to the Church only.

    The former is not a sacrament nor an Instrument of Grace; the latter is an Instrument of Grace and given only to the Church. Does that make sense? Here are the other quotes I haven't mentioned yet, which explain why women cannot have spiritual headship:

    "But I want you to understand that Christ is the head of every man, and the man is the head of a woman" (1 Cor. 11:3).

    "The husband is the head of the wife, as Christ is the head of the church" (Eph. 5:23)
     
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  12. Toma

    Toma Well-Known Member Anglican

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    Then I respectfully remove that sentence, as it's immaterial to the overall truth. :)
     
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  13. Gordon

    Gordon Well-Known Member

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    That is correct it was Christs way of freeing the Jews and later the Gentiles from the Levitical Law that the most righteous Jew had problems keeping. Paul also talks about that way in his letters.
     
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  14. Toma

    Toma Well-Known Member Anglican

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    My only point about Ephesians 5:23, by the way, is this:

    If man is the head of woman in the same manner as Christ is Head of the Church, those who ask for the ordination of women should be voting to allow the Church to be the master of Christ. That is the only logical conclusion, following Paul's metaphor. The episcopacy and the presbyterate are places of authority in Anglicanism, but "head" is of authority - and man is "head" of the woman just as Christ is head of all the Church. It's very plain and simple, and beautiful.

    Removing this allegory of Paul is critical to the inversion taking place with the ordination of women, in my opinion. See 5:32: "This is a great mystery: but I speak concerning Christ and the church." We should be much more cautious than we have been.
     
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  15. Lowly Layman

    Lowly Layman Well-Known Member

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    I know these verses well, but it seems clear to me that these are speaking about the marital order within the home. It seems rather a bit of a leap to extend these to church governance. Although it has been done. I remember reading once how one of John Knox's chief beefs with the C of E was that it allowed a woman, QE, headship over both the state and the church and subjected men under her rule, which he saw as both antichristian and unbiblical since a woman should have no dominion over a man.

    It is true that Paul says that a man is to be head over his household and be responsible for those under his care. Paul also says that husbands and wives belong to one another and thus are subject to one another. Women, even if subject to the husband in marital affairs, are not chattle. Women have value in God's eyes, not only as mothers but as bearers of God's image, which means Christ's image. In Christ, there is no male or female. When God created man, he created man in his image and likeness, and he created Man male and female. That is the created order. Paul said some things which I believe had clearer meaning at the time they were written than they do now, and we should prayerfully consider them as the voice of the Holy Spirit speaking to the Church for all time, but we need to know both the text and the context of the Word. People thought that Peter and Paul were turning the whole created Cosmos upside down when they preached the Gospel of Jesus Christ which applied (heaven forbid!) as equally to Gentiles as to Jews, that both were equal in God's eyes. That both could serve God in his church, rather than hanging out on the Temple porch no matter how much they loved God. They did not preach that in Christ, there is neither Jew nor Greek ...except that Greeks cannot serve in leadership roles. They simply taught that "all are one in Christ Jesus". The Spirit brings us many things, some old and some new, but as long as they bring glory to God in Christ Jesus, I have no problem with any of them.

    This debate makes me think of something Sojourner Truth once said, when debating women's rights: "that little man in black there, he says women can't have as much rights as men, 'cause Jesus Christ wasn't a woman! Where did your Christ come from? Where did your Christ come from? From God and a woman! Man had nothing to do with Him."
     
  16. Toma

    Toma Well-Known Member Anglican

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    This isn't about womens' rights, but God's rights.

    I'll answer the rest later... :p I just needed to point that out, because this issue has become waaaay too closely linked with feminism and womens' lib. Just let me say that I respect you, all of you, and you're still God's children to all of us conservatives. Don't let our oft-passionate replies make you think we are full of hatred.
     
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  17. Lowly Layman

    Lowly Layman Well-Known Member

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    LOL, I don't fret over God losing His rights.
     
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  18. Toma

    Toma Well-Known Member Anglican

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    Oh well, sometimes rhetoric like that works! :D It is possible for His glory to be diminished on Earth, however, which is what conservatives fear happens with issues like this.
     
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  19. Stalwart

    Stalwart Well-Known Member Anglican

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    LL I fear that the basic premise behind your post can still be summarized as this: "divisions are hurtful; divisions are bad; as long as we abolish all differences and focus on Christ, that is the primary emphasis of all religion and the church."

    The gospel that we find in the NT is opposite: "divisions are good, divisions are strong; they are at the very foundations of Nature and Creation. Sure the different members have equal dignity under God, but they are different members, and all efforts to unite them into one single androgynous whole are wholly sinful."

    When did the effort to unite humanity into an adrogynous whole started? The feminist and atheistic 60s. Everything around you: films, tv shows ("Modern Family"), songs, news, the whole secular world has arranged its forces and pointed its guns at you, so as to inculcate this one belief into you (and me, and all of us). And over there the lonely Apostle of God Almighty saying something different. We have a choice to make, whether we go with God, or with the World.

    That is why I told Celtic1 that the next step is homosexual marriage; and then polygamy; what other abominable sins after that? If we are all in Christ, then if two men are devout Christians but love each other who's to say they can't marry? If a man devoutly loves 10 women and is a fervent Christian how dare we stop him?

    Do you see? This pietistic logic that "belief in Christ is all that matters" cannot work on its own. Nor was it ever meant to. The Bible is not 1 line, it is 1000+ pages long; its Gospel is at times complex and very sophisticated. It has many truths. Reducing it to a simple aphorism is a vehicle, an instrument, through which the atheists split and divide us, so as to win in the end.
     
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  20. Lowly Layman

    Lowly Layman Well-Known Member

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    I can't agree with all of your post, but you got the gist of my post and argument entirely. :)
     
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