Monday, February 13, 2006

Why Can't Women Honor God With Our Minds?

The following is from a PCA minister (not all PCA ministers are like this believe me):

Q: "What does it mean for a woman to be theologically trained?"
A: A theologically trained woman is a one, who, in the fear of God, does not disdain her sex for something more sophiticated such as writing books or speaking at conferences or translating Hebrew.

If women are not allowed to be theologically trained or read the Bible in Hebrew, why are respected, conservative, reformed seminaries (Westminster, RTS, etc.) training us to do so? And why can't a woman read the Bible in its original language? Where does it say that in the Bible. I would have left these questions at his website but he doesn't take comments. He just wants to pontificate from on Sinai (woman, thou shall not leave your kitchen or honor God with your brain) instead of communicate.

I am thankful to the Lord that my PCA minister does not hold this position or I never would have been able to go to seminary. (Westminster requires a letter of recommendation from your pastor as well as your husband. BTW, three men ordained in the PCA gave me a letter of recommendation.)

You can read this and more at his blog. (His blog does have a catchy title, PHIL UP THE BLOG)

(Link via Teresa, thanks Teresa for getting my blood boiling first thing in the morning)

Update: Now that my blood has cooled down, I regret the title of this post and have changed it.
Another update: He deleted the post, so the above link doesn't work. You can read his blog here.
Yet another update: It's baaaack!


  1. prairie girl said...
    "He just wants to pontificate from on Sinai (woman, thou shall not leave your kitchen or honor God with your brain) instead of communicate."

    or write his own catechism I guess.
    michele said...
    I was thinking when I saw that, "I am so glad that the Westminster divines didn't write our catechism that way!"
    Light said...
    It's really going to blow his mind when he learns that the PCA is seriously exploring the issue of women and gender in the church. In my opinion, it's only a matter of time until the PCA moves away from its unbiblical position of excluding women from their God-given gifts in all realms of life, including ordination.
    Moonshadow said...
    I am sorry about getting you upset.

    What follows might make you upset again - just delete my comment, if you want:

    This letter (especially section 11) was not well-received when it was released ten years ago because most were miffed over the ordination question.

    However, short of that, I can certainly go a longer way with the Holy Father than with those other dweebs.
    Susan said...
    Michele, as you know I am not an "official" presbyterian, but I know that the Lord is calling me to pursue higher education, where it will lead me only He knows. He knows where my gifts will bring Him the most glory.I have no problem teaching women. I don't consider that to be "less" of a gifting to the body. Of course, how it is viewed by the men in charge is a different story. If that is what the brouhaha is about, then shame on them for not being open to the Lord's leading. I remember in my Major world religion class, when we got to Christianity, what was most talked about was the abuse and injustice that women suffered under the authority of the church. It's hard for us to overcome that stigma, but God knows what He is doing in His church, so I trust that. If the church needs to repent of it's arrogance and pride, let's get on with it.
    michele said...
    Yes, it is so true that men can't seem to get it through their heads that in Christ there is no male or female. I understand that the pastor and the elders are to be male but that doesn't mean I am under the authority of every male in the church. I am only under the authority of my husband and the elders and pastor of my church. If they believe that it is OK to go to seminary and learn theology then everyone else can take a hike (or something like that).

    This is one reason I wanted us to be out here so that other people can hear that Christianity is not about saying "no" to women but about loving them and supporting them in their calling.
    michele said...
    Welcome, light! When did the PCA start looking into women being ordained? I haven't heard about that! I thought they were pretty set on men only ordination.
    Light said...
    Michele asked, "When did the PCA start looking into women being ordained? I haven't heard about that!"

    It's nothing official. But I'm privy to some information I can't go into detail here. It's my observation that persons of great influence within the denomination are looking at the issue seriously and making some long-term, strategic moves to bring the discussion forward and shine the light on the outstanding scholarship in that regard.

    Oy, reading over that sentence makes me sound like a lawyer. (I'm not.)
    michele said...
    Interesting. I think if that happens it would be a huge problem and many people would leave the church. I hope that they are going to be very careful because it would be a shame for yet another church to be ripped apart.
    Light said...
    Michele, from my perspective, it would be the biblically correct way to go. I've studied this issue for years, and came kicking and screaming from the complementarian camp into the egalitarian one. I tried to hold on to comp beliefs as long as I could, but after years of prayer and study, I finally yielded to what I believe to be the biblical truth.

    It's quite difficult to find a church that lines up exactly with what you believe. I don't quite fit anywhere. I've always been reformed in my theology, yet others have accused me of not being so simply because I'm egalitarian. But too many churches that ordain women are far too liberal for me. For now, despite its comp beliefs, my church is a loving, grace-filled community. I mean, who could leave a church where the pastor himself recommends Don Miller's "Blue Like Jazz" ... LOL.
    michele said...
    I agree with you that we are never going to find a church that matches up with all our beliefs. I was at a Lutheran church for 5 years knowing that I was reformed. It can really be hard being different. I am so happy being in a PCA church because it is the closest to what I believe. I may not always agree with the pastor but I know where he is coming from and I have learned to accept that he is the leader in the church (which is very hard for a rebel to do :-).

    Since I really don't want to be a pastor and since I have absolutely no interest in teaching men then it really doesn't matter to me that there is a "stained glass ceiling." I can understand that others might not feel the same.

    If the exegesis is convincing maybe the church can be moved. But it will have to be clear and convincing because you have 2000 years of church history against you.

    I would be interested in reading it. Is the material on line?
    Light said...
    There's a wealth of good scholarship at in their articles section. But for meatier reading, I suggest starting with Rebecca Merrill Groothius's book Good News for Women and then going on to Discovery Biblical Equality. There's a bunch more, but that's a good start.
    michele said...
    Thanks for the info, I will have to put it on my summer reading list :-)
    Moonshadow said...
    Leaving a church over the ordination of women is reprehensible but people do it: (Fr.) Richard John Neuhaus does not admit it here but in other interviews, he has said that women's ordination motivated him to switch affiliations.

    The same is true of Frederica Mathewes-Green, I mean, her husband and her, if you read her autobiography, Facing East. I would hope that I would not but, then, chances are slim to none in my case.

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